Guns in the House

Yesterday, in a neighborhood very near mine, a 53 year-old mother shot her 10 year-old daughter and her 79 year-old father twice each with a 12 gauge shotgun, and then turned it on herself.  The woman’s husband (and little girl’s father) found the three in the house after returning from an errand his wife had sent him on. All three died, but the little girl’s grandfather lived long enough to tell the Sheriff’s deputies what had happened, and investigators found signs of struggle as he and his granddaughter fought for their lives. According to friends and neighbors, the mother was active in the community, helped out at school, and organized neighborhood games, but had been “distraught” in recent weeks.

We hear a lot of blather about having guns for home security, for hunting, and for general protection. But the reality of guns in the home is homicide, suicide and accidental shootings. Owning a gun is a primarily a danger to one’s self and family–not to some nameless, faceless, vanishingly rare home invader–as this and countless other incidents show. When someone is distraught, upset or stupid in a home, having a gun gives that person a tool of unsurpassed lethality. Perhaps this 53 year-old mom could have stabbed her child and father to death with a kitchen knife, or bludgeoned them with a hammer. Even so, she would have needed far more strength and luck to get the job done with anything other than the implement she employed a few minutes before her beautiful daughter had to catch an elementary school bus.

I grew up in gun country, and we had guns in the house.  I’ve fired many guns, including a variety of pistols, rifles and shotguns. At close range, by far the most powerful and fearsome weapon I’ve handled is a 12 gauge shotgun. Inside a house, it’s basically a hand-held cannon. Distraught people should not be anywhere near one. You, me and every other human has the capacity to become distraught enough to do something extremely stupid and violent with that kind of weapon.

So, if you have a gun in the house, give your family the best Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa gift imaginable: get rid of the damn thing. You’ll still have the precious right to own one even if you don’t exercise it.

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372 replies
  1. 1
    Raven says:

    A shotgun is better than a high powered handgun or long rifle where a round can penetrate walls.

  2. 2
    Palli says:

    Amen, guns should not be in homes.

  3. 3
    jonas says:

    Maybe if the 10 year-old had not been prevented by the bleeding hearts out there from carrying a concealed handgun, she might have prevented this tragedy. We should also all support A.B. 231, which will allow fetuses to arm themselves against any potential abortions.

  4. 4
    Mudge says:

    This is very sad. I have always wondered why distraught folks feel the need to kill the children, or dear old Dad. And I wonder why she wanted to keep her husband alive.

    I have 2 inherited guns, a 12 gauge and a .32 pistol. I own no ammunition. My owning them keeps them out of the hands of moms like her.

  5. 5

    I was raised with guns, in an area where folks hunted in order to put meat on the table. I understand hunting.

    I’m not a big fan of shotguns. You can defend yourself, your property, and your livestock against all kinds of predators with a .22 rifle. Been there, done that.

    This is a very sad story. I wonder if anyone knows what the lady was so upset about.

  6. 6
    Fearguth says:

    Having had those once close to me commit suicide with guns in the home, I can only say, Amen!

  7. 7
    MattF says:

    The catch is that crazy people don’t pay attention to rational arguments about why crazy people should not have immediate access to deadly weapons.

    Some 20 years ago I knew a Vietnam vet who kept a pistol under his pillow, just in case. And he was a smart guy, trying to put his life back together 10 years after the Disaster. And now, guess what, we’ve got a whole new cohort of ex-soldiers from Iraq and Afghanistan who have experience with weapons.

  8. 8
    The Moar You Know says:

    get rid of the damn thing.

    Not going to happen, but thanks for the unwanted moralizing.

  9. 9
    Morbo says:

    Should be a fun thread.

  10. 10
    kindness says:

    Go fuck yourself.

    I own guns. I don’t own them for defense. I don’t own them to threaten others. I don’t hunt. I like to target shoot.

    I support gun restriction legislation. I support being able to hunt only those critters that have healthy populations. I support 2 week waiting period where they check you out. I support clip restrictions and citizens not being able to own fully automatic weapons.

    But you, you’d like to paint all of us as nuts because some people are nuts. Again, go fuck yourself.

  11. 11
    Schlemizel says:

    @Mudge:
    Distraught people take out loved ones because they know nobody will be there to take care of them once they are gone.

    Unless you have wrestled with this demon you have no idea how brutal an ugly it is.

    There is a movie, I don’t remember what it is or what the story line was but a major thing in it was too women struggling with their moms suicide. One of their roadblocks was mom had hung the cat as well as herself. It finally dawned on one of them the reason was she didn’t want the cat to suffer without her. I understand that thinking. brutal and ugly

  12. 12
    Cat Lady says:

    If we get rid of our guns, how are we going to prevent “them” from coming to take our guns?

  13. 13
    RossInDetroit says:

    Two gun suicides in my immediate family in the last 8 years. And last month a guy I shared a locker with in school fatally
    shot his wife and himself.
    Yes, you can kill yourself other ways. 6 months ago my BIL did it with a can of argon welding gas. But that’s not a spur of the moment act like pulling a trigger.

  14. 14
    Rathskeller says:

    To be honest, I decided to do my best to stop caring about gun control as a political issue a few years ago. These tragic stories keep happening, and they all rip my fucking heart out. America collectively just loves guns. While each tragedy is individually mourned and picked over in the press, we do not have the collective will to stop innocent people dying, over and over and over again. So I’m done.

    I’ll vote for any candidate who is against them, and I’ll back virtually any plan to change them, but I lost hope that we could actually change several years ago. I will believe in an improvement in gun control only after it has happened.

    I am so sorry for this family. Those poor people.

  15. 15
    Schlemizel says:

    @Morbo:
    Sadly, too many people on both side of the issue have no sense of good will on the part of those who disagree with them. The result is we get an immediate “GO FUCK YOURSELF” instead of “I see your point but think you are wrong & here is why”

    If I disagree with you how can I respond to “fuck you”? By having a calm, ration discussion where we find some common ground or agree we just see the world differently? Probably not.

  16. 16
    Rathskeller says:

    @kindness: Not nuts, just indifferent to the harm. Carry on, no one will stop you.

  17. 17
    waratah says:

    I was not raised in a home with guns and would rather not handle them. When my husband had to leave on a trip he would show me how to load up the shotgun and tell me to not aim just point in the direction and pull the trigger.
    When he left I put it away.

  18. 18
    drkrick says:

    @kindness: The problem is, it isn’t always easy to tell whether someone in the house is nuts. Or whether, under stress, they will become nuts for even the few moments it takes someone with a gun to execute a tragedy.

    But I understand that for some people the thought of losing their guns is like the thought of losing their nuts. So it goes.

  19. 19
    jrg says:

    Carry on, no one will stop you.

    Yeah. OK.

    But the reality of guns in the home is homicide, suicide and accidental shootings

    Horse shit. I know dozens of people who have guns in their homes. Not one of them has killed someone. I like the “accidental shootings” bit, BTW. You do know they make these things called “gun safes”, right?

  20. 20
    steve says:

    6 months ago my BIL did it with a can of argon welding gas.

    years ago when i was suicidal (no longer) i spent a lot of time thinking about how. I settled on asphyxiation. Seemed like you’d just fade out, if you picked the right gas. (N2? Ar? CO?…)

  21. 21
    Raven says:

    Mistermix made a plea from his heart. It doesn’t seem to me it requires a hysterical response. People are going to do what they want to anyway.

  22. 22
    tomvox1 says:

    @kindness:

    Yeah, but how many other people in your household have access to your guns? Of course, if you live alone then nobody should worry. You’re clearly not the angry type who would act rashly.

  23. 23
    dance around in your bones says:

    Well, Anne Laurie’s RIP, Russell Hoban post made me smile in delight while also leaking a bit out my eyes (humanity doesn’t always suck! sometimes we excell!)

    And this post made me get leaky again, in despair for the woman who was so depressed or stressed or whatever that she made the decision to end the lives of her daughter, her father and herself. And a gun made it so easy…it’s like pointing your finger at someone and going kablooey.

    I have also had several suicide-by-guns in the family. They are very messy, and they hurt the remaining family members so much. What do you do with the truck that ‘Uncle Bob’ decided to blow his brains out in because his wife told him she was leaving?

    It’s just incredibly sad. I don’t have any answers.

  24. 24
    mistermix says:

    @kindness: As a target shooter, you can’t store your guns at the range in a locker?

  25. 25

    I’m reminded frequently of the story of a study done among people who had jumped off of the Golden Gate Bridge and lived to talk about it. Every single person interviewed stated that on the way down they realized they could have coped with everything in their lives, one way or another, except of course for the fact that they had just jumped off of a bridge.

    It may be that those who didn’t come to that conclusion didn’t survive the fall. But I’m sure that many realized the futility of their actions but it was too late.

    Yes, I know what depression looks like. It’s a bitch. But this story has encouraged me to to look for other solutions. And here I am.

    Poor lady. Poor family.

  26. 26
    The Moar You Know says:

    Sadly, too many people on both side of the issue have no sense of good will on the part of those who disagree with them.

    @Schlemizel: Read mistermix’s post again, and imagine yourself in the position of a law-abiding gun owner who uses his or her firearms for sport and recreation. It doesn’t take a lot of imagination or empathy to understand why the reaction of some of us – me included – runs more towards “go fuck yourself” rather than “well, we’ll just have to agree to disagree”.

  27. 27
    amk says:

    Hear, hear. Finally a mm post that I can get 100% behind.

    People kill people. Indeedy.

  28. 28
    John's Minions says:

    I too feel the need to point out that I’ve got venison in the freezer before typing, but that defensive itch is interesting, as if owning a gun is a requirement to be able to even talk about them.
    In the long run they’re pretty bloody useless. I got robbed at gunpoint twice when I lived in Kansas City, and you know what? I’m glad I didn’t shoot the kid robbing me. I’d rather lose the $20 in my wallet and have to make some calls to my bank than have a death on my conscience.
    Here’s a question for the discussion though for the gun-owners out there. Have any of you really gotten any use out of your guns? I’d be curious to hear who actually hunts, who shoots at ranges and who just likes to have ’em.
    I’ll admit, the last two kind of mystify me. I own a power drill to drive screws, for example, not faff about on my day off with it.

  29. 29
    Rafer Janders says:

    I was in a group of friends last year and the conversation turned to guns. One of these friends has had several major depressive episodes in the past but has been fine for over a decade now. Another friend lives in the South and is a fervent hunter, with a Cheney-sized safe full of various rifles, shotguns and handguns at home (and two children under the age of twelve, but nevermind).

    The former depressive friend, though not a hunter himself, is actually not that opposed to guns, in fact, he claims to like them and has even gone target and skeet shooting for fun. So when the Southern friend asked him why he didn’t own any guns himself since he enjoyed shooting so much, his answer was as honest as it was blunt: “if I’d had a pistol in the house back when I was depressed, I know I would have shot myself out of despair and I wouldn’t be here now. I can’t be trusted to have a gun without supervision.”

  30. 30
    jibeaux says:

    @Rathskeller: ditto to that. It really doesn’t matter the magnitude, the frequency, or the horror of these things, there simply isn’t any will to change it and I’ve admitted defeat. Our response is apparently always & forever going to be a variation on “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.”

  31. 31
    dance around in your bones says:

    I would also add that her decision to send her husband out on an errand while she offed the family was an incredible act of hostility…’look what I did!’, you know?

    If she even thought it through that much.

  32. 32
    Satanicpanic says:

    The thing I don’t think people consider is that it’s mentally very hard to shoot someone if you’re in a normal mental state. Your brain is just not going to override years of training that murder is a very bad thing. I doubt I could shoot someone just for breaking into my house because even the state doesn’t consider robbery a capital crime. But the intruder might not have the same morals that I do.

  33. 33
    wonkie says:

    I used to own a gun. It was bought for me for self protection. After a while I realized that I did not need it and I threw it off a bridge into deep water.

    I know of a seventh grader who shot and killed his brother, a sixth grader who committed suicide, and and a high school boy who is paralyzed from the waist down from a gunshot. All were guns in homes for protection. In every case an adult wailed about not knowing that could happen, the gun was for protection, the kids weren’t supposed to touch it…All were guns taken by kids and used for something other than protection.

    If we stopped talking about guns in terms of protection and instead discussed them in terms of their actual purpose–killing people (handguns) and animals- maybe people would be more responsible. It sounds really bad to say that one has a gun by one’s bed for killing people but that is what the gun is there for.

  34. 34
    Jerzy Russian says:

    @Raven:

    Mistermix made a plea from his heart. It doesn’t seem to me it requires a hysterical response. People are going to do what they want to anyway.

    Agreed.

  35. 35
    gbear says:

    Agree with Rathskaller that America is just in love with it’s guns. A woman in my office has a string of holiday lights at her workstation that look like lit-up multi-color shotgun shells.

    I won’t have a gun in my house. I have a history of depression and know better than to have that kind of an impulse temptation in the house. My house has been robbed twice while I was at work (I now have a security system) so it’s more likely that any gun I would own would be out on the street before I ever had to use it for home self-defense. Guns just have no place in my home.

  36. 36
    Virginia Highlander says:

    I shall retain the means to kill myself on short notice for as long as I can, thank you very much. The idea gives me great comfort.

  37. 37
    Schlemizel says:

    @The Moar You Know:
    Only if I don’t assume good intentions on MM’s part. But I do even if I don’t agree with him here. I understand where he is coming from & I can even sort of agree with his conclusion despite owning & keeping guns myself.

    It is much harder to assume good intentions in ‘go fuck yourself’, even though I might agree with whatever point the poster wanted to make separate from that.

    This has poisoned the entire debate on gun control for years. The NRA should be so proud of having made reasonable debate impossible.

  38. 38
    Tom65 says:

    So for some of you, the argument comes down to someone suggesting you get rid of your (dangerous) toys. Got it.

  39. 39
    mistermix says:

    @The Moar You Know: This woman and her husband were law-abiding gun owners. In fact, she had applied and was granted a pistol permit earlier this year.

    The point is that her circumstances changed, and she had a gun.

  40. 40
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @Raven: I agree. As for stating the obvious. This should end well.

    Seriously, stuckinred makes an important point – this post doesn’t require an obnoxious or hysterical response. However, I’m not much of a hoper, so I don’t expect that to stop anyone.

    I was raised around guns and have an appropriate respect for their use as tools, sporting items and their potential danger. I’ve shot varmints as well as in competition. What I believe about whether private individuals need to keep weaponry is of little interest to anyone other than Mr. Q. But I’ll ask folks not to let this devolve into a shouting match. Just because.

  41. 41
    The Moar You Know says:

    Cars kill more people each year than guns.

    So, if you have a car in the house, give your family the best Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa gift imaginable: get rid of the damn thing. You’ll still have the precious right to own one even if you don’t exercise it.

  42. 42
    PeakVT says:

    @jrg: Do you grasp the concept of a statistical probability? Fact is that having a gun in the house means members of the household are more likely to die due to one.

  43. 43
    PIGL says:

    @kindness: I am not calling you nuts. I am calling you a vile and pathetic fool revelling in the grip of a cruel and absurd fetish that’s all about power and great big dicks. Now go DIAF.

  44. 44
    Mark B. says:

    My gun horror story is this: A friend of mine had a running argument with one of his neighbors about the neighbor’s barking dogs. He got home from work one day and went into his back yard to be confronted with incessant barking. He got into an argument with the neighbor, and the neighbor went into his house and got a gun.

    There was a 7 foot privacy fence, so all of this fighting was done without seeing the other person. The neighbor fired one shot through the privacy fence and hit Matt in the heart. Matt was able to stagger into the house and get the phone, but he was dead by the time the EMS arrived.

    The neighbor basically drank himself to death withing 6 months and never went to trial. None of this would have happened if he hadn’t had a gun in the house.

  45. 45
    Egg Berry says:

    @The Moar You Know: In after false equivalence!

  46. 46
    Nemesis says:

    I hate guns. Their owners are shit.

  47. 47
    jibeaux says:

    @The Moar You Know: Um, she was a Girl Scout mom who passed out tea lights and supervised cookie sales and trick or treating. It sounds to me like right up until the moment she started shooting, she was law-abiding. A gun kept at home is many times more likely to be used on the inhabitants of the house statistically than on an intruder — something on the order of 75 times more likely, IIRC. All those statistics have deaths and injuries and stories behind them, and I bet the story of more than a few is “but I’m a law abiding gun owner and have my gun for protection or sport.”

  48. 48
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Virginia Highlander:
    I hope that, next to whatever means you have chosen for immediate self-deliverance, you also keep the phone number of your local suicide-prevention hotline.

  49. 49
    mistermix says:

    @The Moar You Know: I’d have a lot more respect for what you’re saying if you just acknowledged that there’s a risk to owning a gun and you think the benefit outweighs the risk for some reason. Instead, you’re not even acknowledging the risk, just throwing out weak stuff like this (which is false on its face: almost anyone can all prosper in life without guns, most of us can’t prosper without cars.)

  50. 50
    jrg says:

    @Tom65:

    So for some of you, the argument comes down to someone suggesting you get rid of your (dangerous) toys. Got it.

    Alcohol is dangerous. You should get rid of any that’s in your house, because an unstable woman down the street got plowed and ran into a school bus.

  51. 51
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Raven: Depends on the load in the weapon. Some pistol rounds, such as Glasers, will not penetrate drywall, even in .357 or .45, while 000 buck can go right through it.

    I own guns. I have them in the house. Disassembled, inside a gun safe, with the trigger or bolt locked in a separate, locked compartment. Disassembled guns are not only safer, they last longer with less need for repair than those kept fully assembled. Guns are tools. I go hunting a couple of times a year, and I find the mental and physical discipline of pistol target shooting to be relaxing. But I wouldn’t carry a gun around for the same reason that I wouldn’t carry a hammer around. I have an alarm system that works just fine.
    And my neighbors on either side, and one down the street are cops who park their cruisers in their driveways.

    @Nemesis: Not all of us, Dude.

    @a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): good luck with that.

  52. 52
    Pococurante says:

    Stories like this are more personal and easily imagined.

    But the truth of the matter is far more people kill and maim others without once picking up a gun.

    If you’re making the point mentally unhealthy people don’t need guns in the house, granted. But there are a lot of other things they don’t need either like drano, rat poison, cars etc.

    What folks like that really need is behavior counseling combined with some sort of medication. No amount of gun control changes that.

  53. 53
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @kindness:

    But you, you’d like to paint all of us as nuts because some people are nuts. Again, go fuck yourself.

    No, kiddo, mistermix is saying that, based upon what Americans actually use them to do, guns in homes are, in ranked order, for sitting there doing nothing, for showing off to visitors, for suicide, homicide and accidental shootings. If home fire extinguishers exploded more often than they were used to put out fires, you wouldn’t be able to buy them.

    imagine yourself in the position of a law-abiding gun owner who uses his or her firearms for sport and recreation

    It’s tricky to imagine that amount of paranoia: do you have to be all “Mah Cold Dead Hands” before you buy a gun, or is that taught you by the NRA?

  54. 54
    jrg says:

    @PeakVT:
    I was responding to this “But the reality of guns in the home is homicide, suicide and accidental shooting”. That’s false. It’s like saying the reality of owning a car is getting decapitated in a rear underride collision.

  55. 55
    Paul in KY says:

    @jonas: Now’s not the time for snark. Even if this is BJ.

  56. 56
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    FWIW I own two shotguns and a rifle. As a general rule, I avoid keeping ammo in the house. Safer that way.

  57. 57
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @mistermix:

    This woman and her husband were law-abiding gun owners. In fact, she had applied and was granted a pistol permit earlier this year.

    The point is that her circumstances changed, and she had a gun.

    That’s a really important point. Guns offer immediacy. That’s among the biggest dangers when circumstances change – there it is. Which is not to say distraught people won’t find ropes (DFW comes to mind) but the gun is handy and immediate.

    Don’t even get me started on how a novice gun owner is likely to have said gun used against him/her once it’s removed from their possession buy the intruder it’s intended to protect against. I have all kinds of opinions, and some data even to support them. But none of that will adequately respond to “fuck you – you’re wrong” so I won’t bother.

    And I’m not even against gun ownership, it’s the uneducated ownership that worries me. But I’ll just go meet my pal at the Indian buffet and let folks shout among themselves.

  58. 58
    Paul in KY says:

    @kindness: I think you’re being too touchy here.

    Maybe you are too wrapped up in your guns?

  59. 59
    Schlemizel says:

    @jrg:
    And there would be nothing wrong with making that argument, or the one suggesting you get rid of your car. I bet you $10,000 if MM had nobody would have made GO FUCK YOURSELF as their opening response.

    Again, I own & keep guns but I have no problem with someone arguing its not necessarily a good thing & most people shouldn’t. Hell, I know I shouldn’t have.

  60. 60
    Raven says:

    Mine are heirlooms and are going to stay on the wall.

  61. 61
    Rafer Janders says:

    Perhaps this 53 year-old mom could have stabbed her child and father to death with a kitchen knife, or bludgeoned them with a hammer. Even so, she would have needed far more strength and luck to get the job done with anything other than the implement she employed a few minutes before her beautiful daughter had to catch an elementary school bus.

    Strength and luck aside, stabbing or bludgeoning someone also requires far more courage or desperation or savagery, call it what you will, than simply pulling the trigger on a handgun. It’s close-up, intimate, time-consuming and brutal, and many people who could kill someone with a gun because of the relative ease of use of that weapon simply would not be able to make themselves kill if they had to do it with a knife or a hammer. Guns turn what would at worst be assaults into murders.

  62. 62
    mistermix says:

    @Soonergrunt: Take note, GFY crew, here’s a reasonable response. SG recognizes the risk of a gun in the house and stores his guns in a way that makes them far harder to use impulsively.

  63. 63
    jibeaux says:

    @Pococurante: Do you have statistics for the United States reflecting that people “far more often” kill each other without using a gun? It could be true, for all I know, it just seems doubtful, at least for this country.

  64. 64
    Mark B. says:

    Given that the post asks gun owners to voluntarily give up their guns, instead of advocating that the government take them away, I don’t see how the gun control argument is germane.

    I do believe that guns can be owned safely, but in my experience it’s more of the exception than the rule. The shooting victim in my story above, Matt, was a gun owner and had one stored in his house. Damn lot of good it did him when he got taken down by a single shot fired blindly through a wooden fence from his drunk neighbor.

  65. 65
    Paul in KY says:

    @jrg: I have a gun safe. They are pretty expensive though. Mine is a small one & it was $900.00.

    Most guns are expensive themselves and if you can afford more than one, you can probably afford a small gun safe.

  66. 66
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Mudge:

    I have always wondered why distraught folks feel the need to kill the children, or dear old Dad. And I wonder why she wanted to keep her husband alive.

    It sounds perverse, but it’s often because they don’t want their loved ones to live with the shame and guilt of the distraught person’s suicide. They think they’re actually performing a mercy, that they’ll all be happier dead and in heaven together. Yes, it doesn’t make sense, but it makes sense to them at the time.

    And why’d she want to keep her husband alive? To punish him. Because she didn’t love him as much as she loved her child and father.

  67. 67
    The Moar You Know says:

    almost anyone can all prosper in life without guns, most of us can’t prosper without cars

    @mistermix: Weak fucking sauce. Cars kill far more people, period. When you address that reality, and acknowledge that cars are a larger danger to the American public than guns, I’ll pay attention to what you have to say about firearms.

    Until then, you are just another hypocrite who cares more about things that piss you off than actual human lives.

    EDIT: A little poll here. Gun owners: who here has a safe? I do and Sooner does. Anyone else?

  68. 68
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Schlemizel: There’s also the aspect of erasing all vestiges of the former life. This happens a lot more often in the very rare cases, like John Emil Litzt, where the killer then leaves and starts a new life under a different name, but it also does happen in the family-slaughter/suicide cases.

  69. 69
    Mnemosyne says:

    There are other countries with similar rates of gun ownership as the US (including Canada and Switzerland) but they don’t have anything near our rates of gun homicide, gun suicide, and gun accidents.

    So, yes, the question then becomes what the fuck is wrong with Americans that we can’t bring ourselves to be realistic and responsible about guns?

  70. 70
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Paul in KY: precisely. Gun locks too, which are usually free. I doubt that either would’ve helped in this case, though.

  71. 71
    Rathskeller says:

    @jrg: thanks, jrg, I had never heard of these “gun safes”. Technology is always the answer. They certainly sound safe.

    Can you spell out exactly how a gun safe would have stopped this depressed but determined woman, who shot her daughter and father over their struggles?

  72. 72
    Paul in KY says:

    @jibeaux: The quote should be: ‘Guns make it very easy to kill people’.

  73. 73
    Schlemizel says:

    @Mnemosyne:
    I blame liberals.

    Sorry Paul, this thread is crying out for snark now.

  74. 74
    mistermix says:

    @jrg: You left out the important part of that sentence, where I contrasted the real consequences of homicide, suicide and accidents with the imagined consequence of stopping an armed home intruder. Could you possibly be willfully misreading what I wrote? I find that hard to imagine, but perhaps it happened in this case.

  75. 75
    Paul in KY says:

    @Satanicpanic: If you break into my house, I assume you are there to murder me.

  76. 76
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Mnemosyne: Canada and Switzerland both have much stronger social safety nets.
    Just sayin.

  77. 77
    Amir Khalid says:

    @The Moar You Know:
    There’s an obvious difference. A car is, first and foremost, a means of transport for you and your family. The knives in your kitchen, also potentially lethal, are first and foremost food-preparation tools. A gun is first and foremost a lethal weapon; its uses, like hunting for food or defense against intruders, are secondary to that main function.

  78. 78
    jrg says:

    @Schlemizel: I’m glad you see my point. Just about every argument being made against guns could be made against alcohol… It can have deadly consequences in the hands of unstable people.

    …And unlike cars, there is no real reason anyone needs to own alcohol, at all.

    The real distinction here, in my view, is that most people consume alcohol, from time to time, so it’s far more effective to go on a self-aggrandizing, moralistic crusade against guns in the house. Some people on the left have fre more in common with right-wing authoritarians than they are willing to admit.

  79. 79
    Rafer Janders says:

    @jrg:

    I know dozens of people who have guns in their homes. Not one of them has killed someone.

    Logic, how does it fuckin’ work?

  80. 80
    kindness says:

    Seriously some here are hypocrites. My guns are locked up. They can’t even be stolen easily. I have an aluminum baseball bat if I need home defense.

    But what I really am aghast at is the jumping to conclusions of good liberals here. How is it that you can be OK with responsible alcohol or drug use but not be willing to consider responsible and decent gun ownership? Hypocrites. I’m a liberal who believes in personal responsibility. Last thing I want is anyone telling me how to live my life. I don’t want to hear fundies telling me how to live my life & I certainly don’t want to hear fellow liberals telling me how to live my life. And honestly if you really want to project terrible images of your own on others, go to town. It’s no skin off my nose. It only hurts you, not me.

  81. 81
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @jibeaux: I think this counts as a decent refutation: over half of all homicides in the US involve firearms. (Similar breakdown for suicides.)

    There’s also no evidence that safe-storage laws (which are to be distinguished from safe-storage practices) reduce the number of suicides using guns.

  82. 82
    Berial says:

    @Mnemosyne: Americans can’t be realistic and responsible about our politics, our religions, or sex lives, or our treatment of races or sexes. What makes you think we’re going to be that way about guns?

  83. 83
    Mnemosyne says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    How many deaths by car are due to homicide?

  84. 84
    Rathskeller says:

    @The Moar You Know: That might be the ten thousandth time I’ve heard that analogy. Cars are not designed to kill people. Guns are. Cars are used millions of times more frequently than guns. You know this, don’t avoid the obvious truth that you like these objects, which are used to kill people. They make you feel safe, or whatever.

  85. 85
    Breezeblock says:

    I’m with Rathskeller as well. Much like climate change, and for the same reasons, I don’t care anymore about this topic.

  86. 86
    jrg says:

    @Rathskeller:
    “Accidental Shootings”, Einstein. Learn to read.

  87. 87
    Kola Noscopy says:

    I grew up and spent most of my life in southern Kansas.

    The redneck/right wingers/Rush lovers/Republican/shit kickers will NEVER give up their guns, in the house or anywhere else. Too much a core part of who they imagine themselves to be. Reason and statistics have no impact. They always blame the individuals and the specific situation for incidents such as described in this post. They never admit to a problem with gun culture itself.

    Plus, their attitude pisses off liberals, so all the better.

    So glad I don’t live there anymore. Of course, it could have been worse: Just a few miles south it gets even more insane in Oklahoma, then completely psycho south of that in Texass.

  88. 88
    The Moar You Know says:

    @kindness: What you said, word for word.

  89. 89
    jibeaux says:

    @Rathskeller:
    I feel like I more often hear the thing about drowning. You know, if gun control people really cared about human life, they’d…ban water, or something.

  90. 90
    Rafer Janders says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Cars kill more people each year than guns.

    Cars are designed for transportation. When used as intended, they don’t kill.

    Guns are designed for…what, exactly? For shooting people and/or animals to kill them. When used as intended, they kill.

  91. 91
    Cassidy says:

    @Schlemizel: This was punishment. Whatever had her distraught involved conflict with the Dad. By killing the daughter she was giving a final “fuck you” to the conflict.

  92. 92
    Satanicpanic says:

    @Paul in KY: They might be. But your brain doesn’t work that way. I doubt my id would let me shoot an unarmed intruder. Oddly enough, I’ve been in the house when someone tried to break in- they saw me and ran. Besides, if they’re breaking in to murder you, they’re probably armed and prepared to kill you first.

  93. 93
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @kindness:

    How is it that you can be OK with responsible alcohol or drug use but not be willing to consider responsible and decent gun ownership?

    That’s a false dichotomy. You should be directing your ire at those selfish, selfish people whose introduction to the wonderful world of firearms is blowing their brains out.

  94. 94
    PeakVT says:

    @jrg: I know. You missed what MM was saying.

  95. 95
    Schlemizel says:

    @jrg:
    And yet you completely missed my point. Had MM made those argument NOBODY would have rushed in with GO FUCK YOURSELF. Agree or disagree we might have had an actual discussion on the merits of drinking, driving or gun ownership.

    As I said – the NRA must be very proud.

  96. 96
    Paul in KY says:

    @Rathskeller: Maybe as she dialed the combination it might have been just the time needed to re-evaluate or tell the daughter/grandfather to get the hell out of the house.

  97. 97
    hrprogressive says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Pretty much this.

    You won’t find me agreeing with conservatives on much, and I’ll never have an NRA membership, but I am absolutely going to continue to have a pistol in my house for all of the “talking point” reasons you hear about.

    I like to go to the range, I like to shoot non-living targets, and I want to get my concealed carry permit so I can have real protection on my person at all times, because I am a slightly paranoid loser who does not trust the pond scum to leave me alone if I leave it alone.

    I’m all for making sure that guns are not obtained by confirmed psychopaths or convicted felons, and I believe it is not a violation of the 2nd Amendment to make sure that any gun purchaser is in fact a sane, law-abiding citizen.

    But when you break out the Weenie Liberalism and need a fainting couch around the subject of firearms, you make everyone else look bad.

    A “distraught” woman should have sought out counseling, or her friends or family, or clergy, or the FSM, or someone besides the Remington or whatever was in her home. Sure, I buy that.

    But the idea that because someone chose not to think straight and went crazy with a gun means I ought to get rid of mine? How very British of you, whose complete paranoia over lawful civilian ownership of firearms makes me and my expatriate British wife shake our heads, a lot.

    So, yeah. Thanks for the knee-jerk blog post. How “Very Serious Person” of you.

  98. 98
    Paul in KY says:

    @Schlemizel: That’s snark not directly sent towards the crazy perp/victims. I hereby OK it ;-)

  99. 99
    Pococurante says:

    @jibeaux: Sure. Let’s keep it simple and just look at traffic fatalities. That alone dwarfs gun murder/suicide.

    Let’s start with the gun murder/suicide numbers, 12,632 in 2007:

    The majority of gun-related deaths in the United States are suicides,[5] with 17,352 (55.6%) of the total 31,224 firearm-related deaths in 2007 due to suicide, while 12,632 (40.5%) were homicide deaths.[6]

    Automobile numbers, even while dropping are more than twice as high:

    According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) early projections, the number of traffic fatalities fell three percent between 2009 and 2010, from 33,808 to 32,788.

    I’m not arguing intent is the same. But I disagree that most automobile accidents are really “accidents” but at best avoidable negligence. Drinking while driving is purely attempted murder in my opinion.

    This is probably the type of breakdown you wanted to see.

  100. 100
    Chris says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    So, yes, the question then becomes what the fuck is wrong with Americans that we can’t bring ourselves to be realistic and responsible about guns?

    Here’s the thing about the Swiss: the reason people there all have guns is because they’ve all done their military service and are all still expected to act as citizen-soldiers in the event of a danger (the “nation-in-arms” concept has been embedded in the Swiss consciousness virtually since the creation of the country back in the Middle Ages, long before most of their neighbors).

    All able-bodied Swiss citizens have been through basic training. All of them have annual refresher courses for quite a long time after that. That means gun ownership in Switzerland comes with a discipline that simple isn’t there in the United States. IMHO.

  101. 101
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jrg:

    Just about every argument being made against guns could be made against alcohol… It can have deadly consequences in the hands of unstable people.

    Short of hitting someone on the head with a fifth of scotch, there’s no way you can kill someone with alcohol as quickly and efficiently as you can kill them with a gun.

    I really don’t understand why gun lovers can’t just acknowledge that guns exist to kill things. That’s what they’re designed to do. You may only use them to shoot targets, but they are entirely designed to kill people and animals quickly and efficiently.

    You sound like the guy who kept a tiger in his apartment and was shocked, SHOCKED when the tiger attacked him. Who knew that a 400-pound predator that evolved as an efficient killing machine wasn’t a good house pet?

  102. 102
    Warmongerer says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Yes, lots of people die from car accidents so the government has aggressively sought to reduce that number. As a result, the fatality rate has steadily trended down that it’s now less than half of what it was in the 60s.

    What’s your point then?

  103. 103
    Pococurante says:

    @The Moar You Know: I have a safe. The ammo is kept in a separate lockbox.

    @Mnemosyne: I’m going to guess more homogeneous societies with better general health care systems and safety nets.

  104. 104

    @The Moar You Know:

    …. imagine yourself in the position of a law-abiding gun owner who uses his or her firearms for sport and recreation.

    Let me break it to you, just because you are law abiding and a sportsman, it does not mean your family is immune to mental illness and depression. At least put the guns is a gun safe like a lot of sportsman do and quit being stubborn.

  105. 105
    jrg says:

    @The Moar You Know:
    I have a safe, that only I have the combination to. I inherited several shotguns and a .22 a few years back. The first thing I did was order a safe. I would not have guns in my house without one.

  106. 106
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    Gun ownership is legal in Japan but the rate of firearm death per 100,000 people is only 0.05. In the U.S. the rate is 300 times that. Discuss.

  107. 107
    satby says:

    @The Moar You Know: My dad was a homicide cop when Chicago was the murder capital of the US. I was taught to handle and use guns safely. I was also taught that they were incredibly dangerous in a home and didn’t belong there, but that was because the old man spent his life picking up the destroyed pieces of other people’s lives when someone snapped. Now I live in the country and most of my neighbors hunt. So yes, there can be responsible gun ownership, but this just doesn’t seem like something to get so hostile with people who think differently. Liberties need to be balanced, your right to swing your fist ends at my nose.

  108. 108
    Rafer Janders says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Read mistermix’s post again, and imagine yourself in the position of a law-abiding gun owner who uses his or her firearms for sport and recreation.

    Um, the post was ABOUT a law-abiding gun owner. She had a pistol permit, and the shotgun she used did not require a permit. She was described “as active in her daughter’s Girl Scout troop, supervising cookie sales and Christmas caroling” and was a perfectly normal, loving, stable and law-abiding pillar of her community. Until, in one moment, she wasn’t. It it could happen to her family, it could happen to anyone, and if you think it can’t happen to you, you’re just fooling yourself.

  109. 109
    Paul in KY says:

    @Satanicpanic: I’m not going to wait to see if they are unarmed. I live alone & have a gun within easy reach. I’m going to shoot first & ask questions later.

  110. 110
    Emma says:

    @The Moar You Know: Really? A plea from the heart from someone is who distressed is met with obscenity and you want me to exert my sympathy?

    Perhaps if you had had the nerve to confront it rationally, and engage in a discussion, I would have. Personally, I have no problem with hunting guns or target practice guns, or skeet guns or whatever your sport is. I even appreciate them as work of art (have you noticed how beautiful Scottish dueling pistols can be?) I also firmly believe in keeping the bullets separate from the gun and both locked inside a proper gun cabinet, but that’s an aside.

    What I don’t understand is the need to own man-killers. Why does someone want a shotgun or an AK-47? As someone in the thread mentioned, a 22 works just as well in defending yourself. That would be a discussion worth having.

  111. 111
    Rathskeller says:

    @jrg: Learn to care. If I read your original comment more carefully, you are objecting to “But the reality of guns in the home is homicide, suicide and accidental shooting.” And you seem to be responding in a probabilistic and unemotional way. You compared deaths from guns to deaths from a car. You belittle accidental deaths, bringing up gun safes as if it is the victim’s fault — even though the victim might not be the person who should owned the goddamn gun safe.

    The thing you’re not getting is how unnecessary any death from a gun is, and how utterly pointless this obsession with having deadly instruments at close hand is. And since you like guns, you know goddamn well that people die from accidental shootings all the time. Here google “shot while cleaning gun“. 88 million results, the first two showing news stories in the last day.

    Go fuck yourself, indeed. You like things that kill people, and you want them near you. Go ahead. America will not stop you.

  112. 112
    Moonbatman says:

    So, if you have a gun in the house, give your family the best Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa gift imaginable: get rid of the damn thing. You’ll still have the precious right to own one even if you don’t exercise it.

    Here Here.
    A good young black man’s life was wrongly taken by gun violence from a privileged old white man who deserved to die as he was too old and a burden on society .
    A “good” shooting

    According to Plantation police, two armed men barged into the Subway at 1949 Pine Island Road shortly after 11 p.m. Wednesday, demanding money from the employee behind the counter. When they tried to force John Lovell into the bathroom, he pulled out a gun and shot both men, police said.
    Donicio Arrindell, 22, was shot in the head and later died at the hospital. Fredrick Gadson, 21, was shot in the chest and ran from the Subway, but police found him in hiding in some bushes on the property of a nearby BankAtlantic.
    The complaint:
    The family of one of the men who was shot by a retired United States Marine while they attempted to rob a Subway sandwich shop said the customer shouldn’t have pulled the trigger.
    […] “He should not have taken the law in his hands,” said Rosa Jones, Gadson’s grandmother.

  113. 113

    @gbear:

    A woman in my office has a string of holiday lights at her workstation that look like lit-up multi-color shotgun shells.

    The gun worship freaks me out.

  114. 114
    Satanicpanic says:

    @Paul in KY: YMMV, but I doubt it. People just sitting on their couch rarely, if ever, can just straight up kill other humans. That’s a taboo that your brain is wired against breaking. You’re more likely to have your gun taken from you and used against you by a sociopath or someone whose mind has been addled by drugs. But you’re welcome to try, I don’t really care one way or the other if people want to own guns. Not my house, not my problem.

  115. 115
    Paul in KY says:

    @Chris: I think being a smaller, more homogeneous country also gives them a type of camraderie we don’t have anymore (or never had) here in the U.S.

    The compulsorary military training you mentioned also fosters that.

  116. 116
    Veritas says:

    Gun control will prevdent suicide. This is why Japan, with some of the strictest gun control laws on the planet, has such a low, low rate of suicide. Oh, wait..that’s completely false. Their suicide rate is off the charts anyway. Oh well.

  117. 117
    Ivan Ivanovich Renko says:

    Quite honesly, I own guns because the right-wing nutjobs are gun fetishists.

    They’re the same kind of right-wing nutjobs whose idea of a fun evening was hanging some random black guy from a tree. Or running him over with a giant pickup truck.

    I’ll grant you, if I am ever accosted by said nutjobs I may not be ready for ’em. But I am greatly comforted by the thought that I might be able take some of the bastards to Hell with me.

  118. 118
    jrg says:

    @Mnemosyne: Sure, OK. Guns are meant to kill things. Alcohol is meant to make you drunk (to some degree).

    At least for people living in the country, you can make an argument for gun ownership (yes, people really do eat game).

    …And the tiger analogy is pretty weak sauce. A tiger has agency. A gun doesn’t. A gun’s behavior is entirely predictable – it won’t do anything by itself.

  119. 119
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Pococurante:

    Uh, I don’t think you read your statistics right there. The 12,632 was only murder. The number of murders and suicides combined was 29,984.

    Also, I notice that only about 1,500 more people died in car accidents than were killed by firearms, and that number keeps going down thanks to improved car safety. Have you guys started thinking about what your new argument is going to be when there are more deaths by firearms than deaths by car accident? That day seems to be quickly approaching since we’re actually working to reduce car accident fatalities but not doing shit all about firearms fatalities.

  120. 120
    elmo says:

    @John’s Minions:

    I’ve told the story before, many times. I once had occasion to defend myself and my partner from two men who came to my house at one in the morning with fairly obvious ill intent. I took the shotgun out to the front porch and stood under the light where they could see me. They left.

    I would not have wanted to be in that situation without a weapon.

  121. 121
    Feudalism Now! says:

    Deep breaths, neighbors. MM is not asking for legislation to ban guns in the home. He wants everyone to acknowledge that a gun in the home statistically raises the chance of their being a gun related death or injury to a family member. It is a simple statement. The inverse is true as well, not having a gun in the house lowers your chance of being involved in a gun related death or injury.
    No enforcement necessary. Be aware of the danger of having a live firearm in the home and give yourself a gift of added safety by not having a live weapon in the home.

  122. 122
    Paul in KY says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe: I think ammo ownership is forbidden.

  123. 123
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    You may only use them to shoot targets, but they are entirely designed to kill people and animals quickly and efficiently.

    Manly hunters use a bow and arrow. Too many Punishers out here and not enough Green Arrows.

  124. 124
    ericblair says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Weak fucking sauce. Cars kill far more people, period. When you address that reality, and acknowledge that cars are a larger danger to the American public than guns, I’ll pay attention to what you have to say about firearms.

    Besides the fact that cars perform a necessary day-to-day function in most households, we have recognized the dangers in cars and have spent over half a century developing licensing regulations, car safety standards, and enforcement mechanisms that are intended to reduce the dangers involved, and have been successful if you look at morbidity/mortality rates throughout the years.

    Any hint of this in the gun world brings down the wrath of the pro-gun lobby to where it’s unthinkable to implement. That’s the difference. If the NRA took its safety mandate seriously instead of being the manufacturing industry’s sales lobbyist, maybe we could have rational public discussions about this.

  125. 125
    Emma says:

    @Soonergrunt: I own guns. I have them in the house. Disassembled, inside a gun safe, with the trigger or bolt locked in a separate, locked compartment. Disassembled guns are not only safer, they last longer with less need for repair than those kept fully assembled. Guns are tools. I go hunting a couple of times a year, and I find the mental and physical discipline of pistol target shooting to be relaxing. But I wouldn’t carry a gun around for the same reason that I wouldn’t carry a hammer around. I have an alarm system that works just fine.

    Now this makes sense. I’m still clueless about the guys who collect man-killers, but hunting and target shooting I understand.

  126. 126
    Warmongerer says:

    @Pococurante:

    Cars are used by far more people far more often. If nearly every American interacted with guns on a daily basis, what do you think the fatality rate for guns would be?

  127. 127
    Bill says:

    @Rathskeller:

    Guns aren’t designed to kill people. They are designed to punch holes at a distance. Where it goes is completely up to the person operating it, just like a car.

    I agree with what others above have said. MM recommended we get rid of our guns. He didn’t threaten to use the law to force us to. I’m cool with that.

  128. 128
    Chris says:

    @Paul in KY:

    Also a good point.

    @Ivan Ivanovich Renko:

    Quite honesly, I own guns because the right-wing nutjobs are gun fetishists.

    LOL, you too? My New Yorker cousin moved down to North Carolina in search of a job, and last time I saw him, he commented that “now that I live in a red state, I really do want a gun.”

  129. 129
    jibeaux says:

    @Pococurante: Really? Traffic fatalities? I needed to specify some level of intent to “people killing other people”? Okay, just so we’re all on the same page, when I discuss people killing other people, I am also not talking about how many moms make their pie crust with so much butter that their kids grow up obese and prone to diabetes which they then die from the complications of, nor am I talking about a spouse who likes to watch TV all the time so it leads the other spouse into a more sedentary lifestyle until they eventually die from heart failure, and I am not talking about the 16 year old friend who got you hooked on your first cigarette, either.

  130. 130
    Veritas says:

    List of countries by suicide rate:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L.....icide_rate

    Japan and South Korea aren’t known for widespread firearm ownership, nor are any of the other countries in the top 10.

  131. 131
    Schlemizel says:

    @Emma:
    Not to get too detailed but, no a .22 is not good enough. If your fear is home invasion you need something powerful enough to knock the intruder down & keep them down. A .22 is not going to do that.

    If you care about your neighbors you do not want to use a pistol that will do the job correctly, you want a shotgun. You will not miss, he will go down & the pellets will not kill the sleeping child next door.

    Now how big is the actual threat that is confronted by this response? Pretty small & a heck of a lot smaller than the paranoid imaginings of most people who keep a gun for home defense. But it makes them feel better to do so OK, thats part of the risk (like living with out health care) we take as Americans I guess.

  132. 132
    singfoom says:

    That is tragic, just tragic. My heart goes out to that family, especially the husband who found them all. That said, I disagree with your idea that no one should have guns in homes because this lady did this.

    Correlation is not causation. She used a gun to kill them and then herself, but sans the gun perhaps she would have used something else, a chef’s knife perhaps…

    You’re welcome to your views and if you want your home gun free, more power to you. But please, I find the moralizing pretty condescending. You can keep guns responsibly, in a gun safe with the ammo elsewhere. Are they dangerous? Yes. Just like many other things in our houses and all over this country. The judgement is unnecessary….

  133. 133
    Rafer Janders says:

    @kindness:

    How is it that you can be OK with responsible alcohol or drug use but not be willing to consider responsible and decent gun ownership? Hypocrites.

    Look, here’s the key difference: alcohol or drugs aren’t weapons. Guns are. Alcohol and drugs are designed to be used on oneself. Guns are designed to be used against others. If I abuse vodka, it’s not generally going to harm you (unless I stag you to death with the bottle shards in my drunken rage). If I abuse a gun, it’s on the other hand very very easy for me to use it against other people.

    Everyone’s a “responsible and decent gun owner”…until they aren’t. The woman in this news article was a responsible and decent gun owner. Even responsible and decent gun owners retain a capacity to murder me and my family with an instant pull of a trigger that responsible and decent alcohol owners don’t, and I simply don’t want them to have that capacity.

  134. 134
    Moonbatman says:

    @satby:

    My dad was a homicide cop when Chicago was the murder capital of the US.

    I hope your old man was one who worked under Chicago police hero Cmdr. Jon Burge.
    Police torture victim files lawsuit

  135. 135
    Pococurante says:

    @Mnemosyne: Well I was supporting my original point, that people kill and maim others without once picking up a gun. I could have focused on medical negligence, texting/cell phones, and the number of people whose lives are destroyed by the drug war as well.

    I can’t find recent numbers on gun ownership – the most constant trustworthy number is around 44 million. Compare that to the number of suicide/murders and we are talking a very small percentage indeed.

  136. 136
    Pococurante says:

    @Moonbatman: Having once worked graveyard shift at a convenience store, yes that was a “good shooting”. I’ll leave it to you to research the number of innocent clerks shot over a six pack and a few twenties in the register.

  137. 137
    RossInDetroit says:

    Who could have predicted that this thread would devolve into “guns are dangerous” VS “Go fuck yourself”?

    It’s just amazing how these things happen.

  138. 138
    Paul in KY says:

    @Emma: A .22 does not ‘work as well’ generally as say a .357 magnum. It can work as well, if you hit the right location.

  139. 139
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    She was described “as active in her daughter’s Girl Scout troop, supervising cookie sales and Christmas caroling” and was a perfectly normal, loving, stable and law-abiding pillar of her community. Until, in one moment, she wasn’t. It it could happen to her family, it could happen to anyone, and if you think it can’t happen to you, you’re just fooling yourself.

    Just wanted to re-emphasize this. Given our extremely poor record of mental health care in the US, I really don’t know how any gun owner here can be 100 percent confident that the gun in their house will never, ever be used for murder or suicide.

    When my husband’s best friend decided to kill himself, he didn’t go for a noose or pills. He used one of his many guns. And his mom got to clean his brains off the ceiling.

  140. 140
    Pococurante says:

    @jibeaux: Ok. Please subtract from the gun numbers the accidental shootings. These would be when cleaning the gun, shooting at no specific target (like the fence incident described above), etc.

    Sheer numbers of people maimed or killed by the intentional discharge of a gun with the intent to hit. We can start with your baseline once you are done.

  141. 141
    Mary says:

    My boyfriend recently told me that this was the first year he trusted himself to go out hunting alone, because in the previous few years he was so depressed he was afraid of what he would do if he was alone in the woods with a gun.

  142. 142
    Paul in KY says:

    @Moonbatman: Tough shit on the criminals. I’ve read many times about people being killed in a robbery. He didn’t know what they were going to do to him & evidently wasn’t going to find out.

  143. 143
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Bill:

    Guns aren’t designed to kill people. They are designed to punch holes at a distance.

    Also too, ground-to-air missiles are just big fireworks.

  144. 144
    Veritas says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Tell me about Japan’s low, low, low suicide rate thanks to their draconian gun control laws. Ditto South Korea.

    Even Canada’s rate is slightly higher than the US suicide rate.

  145. 145
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Pococurante:

    The difference that you’re ignoring is that the rate of use of automobiles in the US is far, far higher than the rate of use of guns. Almost everyone in the US drives or is driven by a car at least once a day — that’s hundreds of millions of man-hours of usage of cars per day.

    But not almost everyone in the US shoots a gun per day. The instance of use is far, far lower.

    Given the number of hours/numbers of instances of usage of cars versus numbers of hours/number of instances of usages of guns, guns are far, far deadlier, even though there are in the raw more automobile than gun-related deaths per year.

  146. 146
    Rathskeller says:

    @Paul in KY: Conceivably. Or perhaps as her father and daughter fought for their lives, as they did, she would have second thoughts right then and try to stop shooting them. As hypotheticals go, yours is awfully weak. It’s like you’ve never met a human being.

    It’s ok if you like guns. Go ahead. America will never stop you from having things that are used to kill people. There is no need to tire yourself out offering irrational arguments, like the idea that pausing to enter a number would stop a suicidal or homicidal person. Really, it’s just silly.

  147. 147
    jrg says:

    @Emma: Yes, it does make sense. Just about every gun owner on this thread has stated that they have a gun safe.
    @Rathskeller:

    Here google “shot while cleaning gun“. 88 million results

    Wow. That’s pretty compelling. You’re quite the social scientist.

    Go fuck yourself, indeed.

    I never suggested you GFY. What’s wrong with you?

  148. 148
    Schlemizel says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Given our extremely poor record of mental health care in the US,

    BINGO
    Having had to navigate the world of mental health care for myself and my daughter I cannot stress enough how bad it is, even if you have insurance. They make it difficult, damn near impossible to get help. I believe a lot of suicides are actually murders committed though malfeasance on the parts of the insurance and mental health professions.

  149. 149
    Herbal Infusion Bagger says:

    Cars kill far more people, period.

    And mercury in coal emissions also kills fewer people than cars. Does that make it OK for coal plants to emit mercury?

    This whataboutery is a weak argument, and you know it.

  150. 150
    Ivan Ivanovich Renko says:

    @Pococurante:

    Ok. Please subtract from the gun numbers the accidental shootings. These would be when cleaning the gun, shooting at no specific target (like the fence incident described above), etc.

    You mean subract the complete fucking morons? Anyone who attempts to “clean” a loaded weapon is a walking advert for a Darwin award. And we won’t even go into some jackass moron idiot fool ninnehammer who fires a weapon without knowing WTF is downrange. Gawd.

    That’s the one thing I’ve always been able to hand the NRA gun nuts– the ones I’ve known have also been firearms safety nazis, part of their nazism of which I thoroughly approve.

    (eta: “loaded” weapon. Cleaning an empty one is just good housekeeping.)

  151. 151
    Paul in KY says:

    @Satanicpanic: I’m a USAF veteran. I have trained with several types of pistols/rifles.

  152. 152
    Pococurante says:

    @Rafer Janders: You’re missing alcohol as a cause. Just as many here are missing the mental instability from the original story.

    If we accept over 40 million gun owners out of 365 million citizens, and gun murder/suicide numbers of 70k this percentage is pretty darn small.

    Guns are not the problem here. Poor insurance and safety nets are the real problem. That’s where the angst here should be, um, aimed.

  153. 153
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Veritas: And they don’t use guns, you stupid shit. They overwhelmingly leap in front of trains or off of buildings. The up-and-coming method is to make poisons out of household chemicals. So if they have strict gun-control laws, I’d say they’re doing a pretty good job. Thanks for proving the point you worthless fuckstain of a festering puddle of shit and rotting intestinal tissues.

  154. 154
    Li says:

    Poor mental health care, lack of community, and a corrosive culture are far more deadly than the mere presence of guns. Do you ever wonder why so many of your imperial subjects are on antidepressants? The examples of Canada and Switzerland, with their widespread gun ownership and much lower levels of violence, are prime examples. They both have cohesive communities, they typically don’t live their lives solely for money and status, and they have functioning mental health systems.

    You want to live in a place with low levels of private gun ownership? Try Rwanda. In a lot of ways, they are just like us! They have poor community cohesion, hate radio, and no mental health system. You should feel right at home. One difference being the bands of men slaughtering whole villages with machetes, of course. But it’s cool! Lacking a gun, I’m sure you could defend yourself in a machette duel, right? At least you won’t have to worry about your neighbors offing themselves with those scary guns!

  155. 155
    not a lawyer.com says:

    Do we have any Madison ‘open carry’ advocates here?

    http://concealedwisconsin.com/.....estaurant/

    “Wisconsin Carry, Inc. a non-profit corporation dedicated to protecting and advancing the right of Wisconsinites to carry in the manner of their choosing, open or concealed, filed a federal lawsuit against the City of Madison and the 5 Madison Police officers who participated in the unlawful detainment and treatment of these 5 individuals.”

  156. 156
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Pococurante:

    I can’t find recent numbers on gun ownership – the most constant trustworthy number is around 44 million. Compare that to the number of suicide/murders and we are talking a very small percentage indeed.

    There are 246 million registered motor vehicles in the United States, and yet only about 1,500 more deaths by motor vehicle than deaths by firearm. So those deaths by firearm seem quite a bit more significant than deaths by motor vehicle when you look at the ownership statistics, don’t they?

  157. 157
    Krankor says:

    Perhaps this 53 year-old mom could have stabbed her child and father to death with a kitchen knife, or bludgeoned them with a hammer.

    Statistically, more people are murdered every year in the US by stabbings and blunt-force trauma than by long firearms.

  158. 158
    Veritas says:

    Suicide rate in France: 16.3

    Suicide rate in the US: 11.0

    It must be all those firearms the French own.

  159. 159
    Paul in KY says:

    @Emma: You don’t want to show up at a bazooka fight with only a bolt action Marlin ;-)

  160. 160
    Soonergrunt says:

    @jrg:

    A tiger has agency.

    A tiger has instinct, not agency.

  161. 161
    Veritas says:

    You know where people own a lot of guns? Hong Kong! I mean, that city is just FULL of gun owners. It must be why their suicide rate is 14.6

  162. 162
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe:

    The reason is that while gun ownership is legal in Japan, the rate of gun ownership is far, far lower. The Japanese don’t really buy and keep guns at home (largely because they live in an orderly society and so far less paranoid about imagined dangers), so don’t have access to them at moments of stress.

  163. 163
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @jrg:

    Wow. That’s pretty compelling. You’re quite the social scientist.

    Let’s go beyond random Googling, and say 700 deaths and 15,000 injuries per year. Just for the record: how many would it take for you to give a shit?

  164. 164
    Ivan Ivanovich Renko says:

    @Veritas: You make me want to switch from Opera to Firefox, just so I could pie your stupid ass.

  165. 165
    Emma says:

    @Schlemizel: So three shots in quick succession won’t work? OK.

    One of the things I’ve noticed in this thread is how defensive many of the gun owners are. The poster did not advocate for the government coming to take your guns, only that you consider getting rid of them. He didn’t make a moral judgment about the state of your soul if you’re a gun owner. And yet the answer BEGAN with obscenities and have devolved into comparisons of suicide rates which tell me nothing because they don’t seem to break the statistic down by weapon of choice OR in strange car-gun comparisons. Some of these people are the same whose opinions in other matters I admire. Why the deliberate derailings?

    I should also say that I don’t enjoy some of the comments made by the “other side” of the discussion. Most gun owners are not stupid or evil, so there’s no need to treat them as such.

    I mean, it’s ok if we have to end at “it’s your life, not mine,” which is where we seem to be stuck at anyway.

  166. 166
    Veritas says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Which is why Japan has such a low suicide rate, amirite?

  167. 167
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    (Is Fart Chucker now going to go with one lame comment about every country with a suicide rate higher than that in the US? Because really, that’s the kind of fucking sadness that should make him want to blow his brains out.)

  168. 168
    Pococurante says:

    @Rafer Janders: I understand your point. But it assumes that the gun itself is the trigger for the behavior.

    That’s not true. The depressed person is depressed every hour of every day. The drunk person, drunk to the extent they could beat someone to death in a bar or drive their car wrong way down the street, is probably drunk half their waking day nearly every day. These are the causes.

    The final tool used is not the cause. Again, the real problem here is not guns, cars, or stupid blog posts. This country has always been poor at providing safety nets.

    It is a miracle that both gun and traffic numbers have in fact been steadily dropping.

  169. 169
    Schlemizel says:

    @Emma:

    Not in the dark, not if you are frightened, not if he is shooting back, no. And quiet honestly even 6 or 8 .22 rounds will not do the job unless you get lucky. Heck there are many cases of multiple 9mm shots not stopping someone. IF this is your concern you want it one and done, no mistakes

    BTW – I agree 100% with the rest of your post – I own guns but do not have them because I fear a burgler

  170. 170
    Jack the Second says:

    Am I the only hippie who is willing to jump out and say people shouldn’t be driving cars?

    They are dangerous. Really dangerous. I think one of the most revolutionary things in the upcoming century is going to be the self-driving car. In fifty years I think people are going to be appalled when they learn how many people died in automobile accidents before they were invented, and how cavalier we all were about the risks.

    I also think there are going to be a lot of people who refuse to let the cars drive themselves, even when the automatic car is (say) fifty or a hundred times safer than a manually operated vehicle.

    But I don’t drive a car normally, so maybe it doesn’t mean anything for me to decry their existence, so let’s double down: let’s ban alcohol. I imbibe quite regularly, I enjoy a wide range of alcoholic beverages. I’ve got more than enough alcohol in my home to kill me.

    But alcohol kills a lot of people, either directly through poisoning and alcohol-related illnesses, or indirectly through impaired judgment and driving abilities (we could probably knock car-related deaths from 30,000 / year to 20,000 per year in the US just by banning alcohol, assuming prohibition worked this time). If alcohol does have some small health benefit, we can regulate bars and restrict everyone to a strict two drinks per day, which is what most studies center around, and make sure people don’t manually operate their self-driving cars while drunk.

    Is this such a hard position to support, to personally enjoy something and agree that, for the good of everyone, it’d be better if it were restricted or eliminated entirely? I don’t plan to stop drinking myself any time soon, but if someone came up with a scheme to save 10,000 lives a year (in the US alone!) that required me to stop drinking, I’d be all for it.

  171. 171
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @@Soonergrunt

    When the Japanese go off the deep end, they kill themselves. When Americans go off the deep end, they want to take other people with them.

  172. 172
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Veritas:

    How’s their murder rate as compared to the US?

  173. 173
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Veritas: Even more support for the point of strict gun-control.
    This is like the third or fourth thread where you inadvertently supported the position of the front pager while trying to attack it.
    You really suck at this whole effective opposing viewpoint thing, you know that?

  174. 174
    Pococurante says:

    @Mnemosyne: You’re missing my point while making it for me.

    Guns or cars, it doesn’t matter. Guns and cars don’t make people do things. They make it faster for me to kill myself or others, but at the end of the day they are the not cause, not the problem.

    I get it. You had a personal experience. Me too. By both cars and guns. But focusing on the inanimate objects isn’t a helpful exercise.

  175. 175
    satby says:

    @Moonbatman: No he didn’t. And go fuck yourself.

  176. 176
    Warmongerer says:

    @Krankor:

    Good god, it’s like none of you have any concept of statistics.

    How many people have access to knives? How many are used on a a daily basis?

  177. 177
    Veritas says:

    @Soonergrunt:

    Yeah, that’s exactly my point. I was being sarcastic in saying they had strict gun control laws and a low suicide rate. I’m mocking the argument that banning guns would somehow lead to a decrease in suicides, where it doesn’t seem to in Japan or South Korea or France or Hong Kong or Belgium or…

  178. 178
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Bill: @Bill:

    Guns aren’t designed to kill people. They are designed to punch holes at a distance. Where it goes is completely up to the person operating it, just like a car.

    Ah, the Wernher von Braun defense:

    “Once the rockets are up,
    who cares where they come down?
    That’s not my department,”
    says Wernher von Braun.

  179. 179
    Warmongerer says:

    @Veritas:

    How much higher do you think the rate would be if everyone in Japan had a gun?

  180. 180

    @Linda Featheringill: I’m not a big fan of shotguns. You can defend yourself, your property, and your livestock against all kinds of predators with a .22 rifle.

    I’m not a gun person, but I had the impression shotguns were preferable for close-quarter defense (which most homeowners are interested in) because they scatter their payload. It takes better aim in a panicked situation to hit an intruder with a .22. Basically, what Schlemizel said.

    On the other hand, when you say “property and livestock” I picture you defending your acreage, in which case a rifle is more appropriate.

    (Fun fact, though I can’t find a link: several years ago, a man in remote Trego, MT found himself face-to-face with a grizzly bear raiding his chicken house. Armed with nothing but a shotgun, he fired anyway, and the birdshot went up the bear’s nose, killing it. Luckiest man in NW MT.)

  181. 181
    Veritas says:

    @Soonergrunt:

    I mean are you really saying that suicide by jumping off a building is somehow better than suicide by gun?

  182. 182
    Emma says:

    @Paul in KY: If I ever get myself into that kind of fight I’m bringing armed drones :-D

  183. 183
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Bill:

    Guns aren’t designed to kill people. They are designed to punch holes at a distance. Where it goes is completely up to the person operating it, just like a car.

    Or the Megyn Kelly defense: “Essentially, it’s a hole-puncher.”

  184. 184
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Pococurante:

    Guns and cars don’t make people do things. They make it faster for me to kill myself or others, but at the end of the day they are the not cause, not the problem.

    And yet you keep missing my point: cars are not specifically designed to kill people efficiently. They are transportation.

    Guns are specifically designed to kill people and animals as quickly and efficiently as possible. Nothing else. You can choose to only use it for target shooting, just as you can choose to take your car off-road, but that’s not what it’s designed for.

    Your gun is designed to kill. Period.

  185. 185
    elmo says:

    @Emma:

    Well, I’m not one for tossing around substance-free profanity, but he did kinda make it about gun owners’ morality. As I said, I’ve actually defended myself with a gun, so it boils down to MM telling me that I should have just accepted whatever those two guys were going to do — to me and to my partner — as part of the price for living in a society with crazy depressed people.

    That’s a deeply personal thing, and yeah, it can make me feel pretty defensive.

  186. 186
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe: Actually, there’s plenty of research to indicate that, for the most part, the direction of violence is tied to the standard of living.
    Those who enjoy a high standard of living direct their violence inward. Those who do not direct their violence outward. IOW, statistically speaking, the richer one is, the more likely one will choose suicide over homicide. This is borne out within national societies as well as across them.

  187. 187
    Herbal Infusion Bagger says:

    To be honest, I decided to do my best to stop caring about gun control as a political issue a few years ago. These tragic stories keep happening, and they all rip my fucking heart out. America collectively just loves guns. While each tragedy is individually mourned and picked over in the press, we do not have the collective will to stop innocent people dying, over and over and over again. So I’m done.

    The same. I’m tired of the frickin’ handwringing after the latest murder/suicide or mass killing when we all know that f**k all will be done about it. In the UK, after a pedophile turned his guns on a group of preschoolers, they tightened gun ownership laws even more strictly. Us, we hold f**king candlelight vigils, and blame violent videogames or some other bullsh*t.

    Gun deaths are the price we pay so that gun owners can stroke their gunz and feel safe, masculine and powerful. Not to mention that enables the right-wing to dream their paranoid eliminationist fantasies.

    A while back, a 15 year old kid in Boston got shot after he squirted a man with a super soaker water pistol.
    Our response? The Mayor of Boston tried to ban the super soakers. It’s a great illustration of how f**ked up gun politics are in this country.

  188. 188
    Veritas says:

    @Soonergrunt:

    So Kazakhstan, Belarus, Russia, and Guyana are known for their high standard of living? Wow, could have fooled me.

  189. 189
    Schlemizel says:

    @satby:

    and go fuck yourself

    Ya know, I think I may make that my sig file for all BJ posts from now on :-{D

  190. 190
    Emma says:

    @elmo: I went back and re-read the post, and I don’t see it. He makes a judgment about “the reality of guns in the house” not about gun owners personally. He doesn’t make remarks about the need to validate their manhood, or their sublimated violent instincts, or whatever (both of which I have seen made and at least one in this thread, though no, I’m not reading through the whole thing again).

    But interpretations are subjective, so we’ll agree to disagree on that one, I guess.

  191. 191
    jrg says:

    @pseudonymous in nc:

    Let’s go beyond random Googling, and say 700 deaths and 15,000 injuries per year. Just for the record: how many would it take for you to give a shit?

    Alcohol kills 75,000 people per year. How do you think this crowd would have responded if MM posted a Christmas plea asking everyone to remove all the alcohol from their houses?

    …Or do you not care about alcohol-related fatalities?

  192. 192
    not a lawyer.com says:

    “Wisconsin Carry, Inc. a non-profit corporation dedicated to protecting and advancing the right of Wisconsinites to carry in the manner of their choosing, open or concealed,

    I do own guns, but I am not a nut about it.

    The shrill response of far too many here, makes me a little uneasy.

  193. 193
    elmo says:

    @Herbal Infusion Bagger:

    Gun deaths are the price we pay so that gun owners can stroke their gunz and feel safe, masculine and powerful. defend themselves and the ones they love.

    Fixed that for you.

  194. 194
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Soonergrunt:

    So raising taxes on the rich to pay for education and universal health care could lower the murder rate? Sweet.

  195. 195
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @jrg:

    Or do you not care about alcohol-related fatalities?

    If you really have that much trouble distinguishing apples from oranges, you must be a fucking atrocious target shooter.

  196. 196
    gaz says:

    @jonas: wicked snark.

  197. 197
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Pococurante:

    I understand your point. But it assumes that the gun itself is the trigger for the behavior.

    Um, no, it doesn’t. Not at all. I don’t know how you get that at all from what I wrote.

    That’s not true. The depressed person is depressed every hour of every day.

    Right, and if my friend had had a gun when he was depressed, he would have simply opened a drawer and used it on myself. Since he didn’t have a gun, he’s alive today. Had he had a gun, he wouldn’t be.

    We can go on about larger causes and the big picture blah blah etc. etc., but at a certain point, we have to focus on the facts at hand. Guns are far, far too easy to use when in the hands of a distraught person.

  198. 198
    elmo says:

    @Emma:
    That’s fair enough. And I’m sure there’s a good bit of Pavlovian conditioning going on, too – we gun owners, especially liberal ones, hear a lot from our compadres about how awful we are, so even the mildest criticism of guns can feel like “here we go again.”

  199. 199
    Kevin says:

    @Mnemosyne: You say Canada has a similar rate of gun ownership to the U.S. I respectfully disagree. As a near 60 year old Canadian, I’d like to know where you came up with that. 35 years of living in Vancouver and no one I ever knew owned a gun. 25 years in the interior hunting country, yes a number of people owned rifles for that purpose. There are rare cases of rifles or shotguns being used in murders (almost all in petty disputes), but the culture of fascination with armaments that can kill as many things as possible without having to reload (nice work, NRA) never made it up here. Thank God. And great post, Mistermix.

  200. 200
    jrg says:

    @pseudonymous in nc: Almost every argument against guns in this thread could be used against alcohol.

    At least guns have some utility. Many people who did not grow up in the country might not recognize such utility exists, but it does.

  201. 201
    Warmongerer says:

    @jrg:

    You and everyone else doing the “wellwhataboutthiscauseofdeath” routine might have a point if the government wasn’t working hard to reduce deaths from cars, knives, alcohol and whatever you want to bring up.

    Not to mention once again, like cars, alcohol is used by far more people far more often than guns so of course the number is going to significantly higher. Once again, I have to ask: If everyone interacted with guns on a daily basis, how many people do you think would die every year?

    Furthermore, it takes a sustained effort to kill yourself with alcohol. It takes a single lapse of judgment to get killed by a gun.

    Are you people *trying* to come off this stupid?

  202. 202

    @elmo: Gun deaths are the price we pay so that gun owners can defend themselves and the ones they love.

    I decided it was easier to just become a ninja, though there’s still a risk of injuring my family and neighbors with stray throwing stars.

  203. 203
    gaz says:

    My father (at the time of his election) was the youngest sheriff to be elected in my state’s history. Later, he was a police chief. He later worked organized crime for the Feds.

    Total LEO, is what I’m saying. Pretty hardcore, very republican.

    He made a point to impress upon me several lessons involving guns.

    One of which was that it’s almost universally a bad idea to keep guns in one’s home. It is far more likely that such a weapon will be used against members of the household. Far more likely than said weapon being used to protect that household. Even if a family member doesn’t turn the weapon on their relatives, a burglar likely will.

    You want home security? Get a dog.

    Much safer, and more effective.

    If you hunt, and must store guns, get a gun safe. Arguments such as “WAAH I must keep a magnum under my pillow to keep me safe from teh libruls/criminals” are utter bullshit. Guns in the home won’t protect you – you do not need them at the ready, or lying around loaded. Again, if they are, they’ll just be used against you – more likely than not.

  204. 204
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    In addition, people in the US as it is designed today simply need cars. In the absence of public transportation, hey need them to get to work and school, to buy groceries, etc.

    But no one needs a gun. You can live your whole life without a gun and never feel the lack.

    It’s a choice to have a gun. It’s not a choice to have a car.

  205. 205
    Mary says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    FWIW I own two shotguns and a rifle. As a general rule, I avoid keeping ammo in the house. Safer that way.

    This seems like a very reasonable compromise.

    I went shootingfor the first time in my life a few months ago, and I’ll admit that I had a blast. As I mentioned upthread, my boyfriend hunts (and makes a mean venison mincemeat, for what it’s worth)so I don’t object to having guns in the house, per se. But I definitely feel a lot more comfortable if they’re safely locked up and there’s no ammunition readily available. As far as protection against intruders – my dogs’ reflexes are a heck of a lot faster than mine.

  206. 206

    @jrg: At least guns have some utility.

    I’m a very utilitarian drinker.

  207. 207
    Emma says:

    @elmo: I can see that. My take on this whole thing is that if gun owners were, say, required by law to keep their guns as Soonergrunt does (or something similar), the poor woman may have been slowed down enough to think about what she was doing. Notice I say “may” not “will”. I don’t think you can stop someone determined to kill themselves, but we can throw roadblocks in their way.

  208. 208
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Kevin:

    I stand corrected — Canada’s gun ownership rate is actually less than half that of the US. The US has 88.8 guns per 100 residents; Serbia, number two on that list, has 58.2 guns per 100 residents. Canada’s way down the list at 30.8 guns per 100 residents.

    Though the point I was making is that you guys are much more responsible with your guns than we are, so I think that point can stand. :-)

  209. 209
    jrg says:

    @Warmongerer:
    No, it doesn’t take sustained effort. All it takes is a bottle, some bad judgement, and a car.

    You and everyone else doing the “wellwhataboutthiscauseofdeath” routine might have a point if the government wasn’t working hard to reduce deaths from cars, knives, alcohol and whatever you want to bring up.

    I’m not talking about the government. I’m talking about this post, and speculating what the response would be if it were about alcohol intended for recreation, which has no utility at all.

    Are you people trying to come off this stupid?

    You tell me, sparky.

  210. 210
    Rathskeller says:

    @jrg: Whatever. You’re selectively reading everything here, and posting semi-random things in response. You’re like some kind of pro-gun bot, switching from rationale to rationale. Alcohol, cars, knives, whatever.

    You like guns, and you don’t care when people are killed by them. It’s not a public policy problem, in your view. People like you are why we will always have too many gun deaths in the U.S. People like you outnumber people like me.

  211. 211
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Kevin:

    The rate of gun ownership in the US is about 90.00. In Canada, it’s 30.00, so the rate of gun ownership is three times as high in the US as in Canada.

  212. 212
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jrg:

    Almost every argument against guns in this thread could be used against alcohol.

    So dying of cirrhosis of the liver after 30 years of drinking is exactly the same thing as shooting yourself in the head?

  213. 213
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jrg:

    No, it doesn’t take sustained effort. All it takes is a bottle, some bad judgement, and a car gun.

    Fix’d. Guns don’t kill people, booze kills people!

  214. 214
    Rathskeller says:

    @Mary: Sure. For what it’s worth, I’ve shot plenty of guns, from pistols to rifles to Uzis. They are a hell of a lot of fun. I just think the obvious truth is that they’re also extraordinarily dangerous things that should not be in the hands of individuals.

  215. 215

    @gaz: You want home security? Get a dog.

    This is great advice. Not only can they pose a physical threat during a confrontation (if they’re big enough), but they provide an early warning — not only to the homeowner, but to the intruder. If you’re starting to crawl in somebody’s window and you hear a dog barking, you run the hell away. Confrontation avoided.

    (They’re also effective at keeping bears out of your chicken coop.)

  216. 216
    Rafer Janders says:

    @jrg:

    Almost every argument against guns in this thread could be used against alcohol.

    Really? That by using alcohol, I can quickly and efficiently kill a large number of other people? That if I get really pissed off, I can massacre others using alcohol and then commit suicide by alcohol before the police can respond in time? How, pray tell?

  217. 217
    gaz says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    It’s a choice to have a gun.

    There are definitely good reasons for owning a firearm. In some cases, (LEOs) it’s part of the job.

    Home protection simply isn’t one of those reasons.

    And some people really like hunting. Sure in this case, it’s a choice, but can be done responsibly.

  218. 218
    Li says:

    @Kevin: This post was about a tragic set of deaths by shotgun, and three shells is not high capacity.

    Fun fact; short barrel (aka sawed off) shotguns are legal in Canada. Not that any of them have ever seen a saw; why bother with dangerous modifications when you can just buy a short barrel?

    In my experience, plenty of Canadians own guns, you would just never know it because they are not objects of fascination and pride in that culture. But, then, we are back to the deeply flawed and psychotic American culture again, aren’t we? You could take away all of their guns, and Americans would still be deeply dangerous, because they lack the presence of mind to ask why when their leaders choose new targets to bomb.

  219. 219
    Warmongerer says:

    @jrg:

    In the fastest route, that’s a bottle that you have to spend the better part of the evening drinking. In the typical route, a sustained campaign of heavy drinking, probably over many years. In both cases, there’s many opportunities for others to intervene – calling you a taxi, alcohol counseling, rehab, etc.

    In the typical route for a gun, you spend a second pulling the trigger and that’s it.

  220. 220
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Warmongerer:

    Once again, I have to ask: If everyone interacted with guns on a daily basis, how many people do you think would die every year?

    To back up your point, the average American spends about 540 hours a year in a car.

    If the average American spent 540 hours a year shooting a gun, we’d all be dead by now.

  221. 221
    gaz says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    How, pray tell?

    Car keys.

  222. 222
    jrg says:

    @Rathskeller: You really need to learn how to read. My argument centered around alcohol for this entire thread. The only times I’ve referred to a car were in the context of either drunk driving, or in response to the ridiculous assertion that “The reality of guns in the home is homicide, suicide and accidental shooting”. Of course, you probably thought I was arguing that cars are dangerous, too, so we should outlaw them… but I don’t fault you for that, as you’re clearly an idiot.

  223. 223
    RossInDetroit says:

    Cars have become much safer in the last 50 years. Guns have gotten voluntary trigger locks.

    Here’s an example of how Federal safety standards have improved crash safety. A 2009 Malibu demolishes a larger and heavier ’59 Bel Air in a front-ender.

    Yet guns remain firmly stuck in the 19th century.

  224. 224
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    So instead, the mom would have pulled out knives.

    Counter that with the two recent instances here in the DFW area where the gun was the only thing that protected homeowners when someone broke in.

    In this particular case, you are talking about a disturbed woman who went over the edge. It would not have mattered if she had a gun or not.

  225. 225
    Paul in KY says:

    @Rathskeller: Just as irrational as your idea that she would stop blasting them & say she was sorry.

    You asked for a hypothetical & I gave you one. Sorry it did not meet your exacting standards.

  226. 226
    wrb says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    If the average American spent 540 hours a year shooting a gun, we’d all be dead by now.

    joke?

  227. 227
    RossInDetroit says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    In this particular case, you are talking about a disturbed woman who went over the edge. It would not have mattered if she had a gun or not.

    I think it would. It’s far easier to defend yourself against a woman in your face with a knife than one across the room with a shotgun. If it isn’t, please explain.

  228. 228
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    In this particular case, you are talking about a disturbed woman who went over the edge. It would not have mattered if she had a gun or not.

    It might have, if the grandfather could have wrestled the knife from her hand.

  229. 229
    Egg Berry says:

    To recap this thread:
    guns=knives=automobiles=alcohol=water=poison=rope

    It’s a wonder we’re not all dead.

  230. 230
    gaz says:

    @Li: I’m pretty sure that the reason we have over 10,000 deaths due to firearms a year (last I heard a figure) and canada’s figures are much lower probably has a lot to do with poverty and desperation.

    There are deep divides along class lines in this country, and the ones at the bottom have a much shittier time of things than the Canadians at the bottom of the class heap.

    Add firearms, stir, and enjoy the mayhem. meh.

  231. 231
    RedKitten says:

    “But the reality of guns in the home is homicide, suicide and accidental shooting.”

    That is one HELL of a broad brush. And that may be the case in America, but it’s certainly not the case here. Case in point, in Canada, accidental firearm deaths stood at 0.1 per 100,000 in 2000.

    I don’t know if it’s a cultural thing, where we give guns more respect as tools for hunting or for protection against “varmints”, but I seem to recall hearing somewhere that Canada owns a LOT more guns per capita than the US does, and yet our gun crime is but a tiny fraction of yours. Most of our homicides are via stabbing.

    We own a couple of guns — a .22, and some other sort of hunting-style gun (can’t remember what kind). The gun is in locked gun safe which is in a locked closet. And the ammo is in a separate lockbox. We’re in the least bit worried about home invasion (it’s rare around here), but we ARE worried about the wildlife. Last year we had a black bear and her cubs starting to make themselves comfortable on our property. Considering that I have a small child, this was unacceptable. My husband fired a couple of shots over their heads, and we haven’t seen them since.

    So in YOUR neck of the woods, a gun in the home might mean homicide, suicide and accidental shootings. In MY neck of the woods, it means that we have the means to protect SamKitten from being mauled by a 175-lb pissed off black bear.

  232. 232
    Paul in KY says:

    @not a lawyer.com: I hate those ‘open carry’ weirdos. They freak everyone out & most of them, a determined criminal/wacko could just take their stupid gun & then everyone is in a world of hurt.

  233. 233
    ericblair says:

    @jrg:

    I’m not talking about the government. I’m talking about this post, and speculating what the response would be if it were about alcohol intended for recreation, which has no utility at all.

    It probably wouldn’t be “go fuck yourself, you fascist.”

    We can have a discussion about alcohol morbidity/mortality, health care and rehab, effects of state laws and whether changing drinking ages or penalties actually does anything, and the history of actual real Prohibition and its effects. I don’t think you’d end up ten comments in with someone saying that guns kill people too and so we shouldn’t regulate alcohol at all.

  234. 234
    RedKitten says:

    In my experience, plenty of Canadians own guns, you would just never know it because they are not objects of fascination and pride in that culture.

    True. There’s really no “glamour” to guns up here. Our viewpoint towards them is strictly utilitarian. I remember reading an essay by a woman raised in a heavy gun culture, and she moved away and it took her a long time to get used to not having a gun everywhere she went. She went back home for a visit, was driving the family car, and discovered a loaded handgun under the driver’s seat. When she asked her mother about it, the response was “Oh, THAT’S where that went!”

    I’m sure that this family is not the lone example of that. And I think that a good chunk of reasoning behind the high rate of danger associated with guns in America is the fact that a lot of people a) have them with them whereever they go, and b) are REALLY fucking careless with them.

  235. 235
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    So instead, the mom would have pulled out knives. In this particular case, you are talking about a disturbed woman who went over the edge. It would not have mattered if she had a gun or not.

    Have you ever met a human being? Are you familiar with how they work? Killing someone with a knife is messy, frightening, gruesome and difficult. It’s not instanteous, those attacked have some capacity for defending themselves, and you can’t simultaneously kill two separate people with one knife. With a gun, however, it’s quick, it’s easy, all you have to do is pull the trigger, and you can murder several people within a few seconds. This is especially the case with a woman, who may not have the physical strength to kill with a knife in a struggle against a man.

    It absolutely mattered that she had a gun.

  236. 236
    Paul in KY says:

    @Emma: May, may not. Depends where they hit. If you shoot Mongo 3 times with a .22, it’s only going to make him mad.

  237. 237
    Mary says:

    @Rathskeller:

    For what it’s worth, I’ve shot plenty of guns, from pistols to rifles to Uzis. They are a hell of a lot of fun. I just think the obvious truth is that they’re also extraordinarily dangerous things that should not be in the hands of individuals.

    Oh, I agree with you 100%. I’m more resigning myself to the fact that gun ownership is a reality in this country that’s not going to change any time soon, and likely not ever. One way to mitigate the potential for harm is to keep the weapon and the ammunition as separate as possible until such time as the shooter makes the informed and deliberate choice to use them both.

    I’ve shot exactly three guns in my life, all in the same day – an AK47, a Ruger MK I pistol, and a fully automatic machine gun. It was an extremely fun day. But if I never get another opportunity to shoot, I’ll be perfectly OK with that.

  238. 238
    wrb says:

    After a few months of peace, a cougar got one of our kids on each of the last two, nights, so getting a gun is sounding mighty practical.

    Get Thelonious two nights ago, Clayton last night.

  239. 239
    jrg says:

    @ericblair:
    So, you think the response to something like: “The reality of alcohol in the home is domestic violence, health problems, and drunk driving.” Would NOT be “go fuck yourself, you fascist”?

  240. 240
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @RossInDetroit:
    @Shawn in ShowMe:
    So, the 10 year old would have been dead, but maybe the grandparent would have survived and kept the mom from killing herself. The score is one dead versus three dead. Somehow, that just doesn’t seem that much better.

  241. 241
    Satanicpanic says:

    @Cris (without an H): The only reason I’ve ever thought about getting a gun is to defend my (so far imaginary) garden from critters. A fast dog would probably be great for that.

  242. 242
    kindness says:

    OK, OK….I apologize for the multiple ‘Go fuck yourself'(s). It wasn’t the correct way to say what I wanted to convey.

    But ya know….some of you people. I’ve had 2 encounters where guns were shot at me. Thankfully I’ve never been hit and my reaction was to run away, not fight back. A reasonable person does not fight with someone who has a gun and has already used it.

    My view is a gun is a tool. Yea it can be a very dangerous tool. But I don’t blame all gun owners when one (or multiple) people do something horrible with a gun just as I don’t blame all car owners when some distraught person drowns their kids in their car. Yes, authorities should be able to take guns away from people who develop mental issues. Authorities should certainly be able to deny those same people from buying guns.

    But you don’t automatically assume everyone is going to become a nutcase. Not in this country at least. And that is the argument being put forth by many who feel no one should be able to possess guns. The accidents? I don’t understand those. If you are gonna handle a gun the first thing you do is take the clip out and check it for ammunition. The very first thing. Some people don’t do that. I’m sorry. Why are you blaming me for them being idiots? Oh, I’m an idiot, a gun fetishist, an unreasonable oppressor to some commentators here. Yea…what ever.

    Happy Holidays all.

  243. 243
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Rafer Janders: There are people killing their kids by drowning them, starving them, and refusing medical treatment. Others drag people behind cars. We have people being stabbed and beaten to death. Yes, I know how people work. You, on the other hand, seem to miss what happens when a person goes over the edge and starts killing.

  244. 244
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    The score is one dead versus three dead. Somehow, that just doesn’t seem that much better.

    What?

  245. 245
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    You, on the other hand, seem to miss what happens when a person goes over the edge and starts killing.

    No, I’ve seen exactly what happens when a person goes over the edge and starts killing. I’ve seen it up close and in person. And each time, the person who had a gun killed far more people with far more ease than the person who killed with a gun or a knife or their fists.

    People will go over the edge — and that is precisely why we should try to limit the tools they can use to harm others when they do.

  246. 246
    gaz says:

    Since I’ve already laid out my case as to why guns are not appropriate for home protection, I’ll add this:

    Anyone that wants to curtail rights afforded by our BoR can go fuck themselves.

    It sets bad precedent. And before anyone screams “slippery slope” keep in mind that legal precedent is how the courts decide to do shit. There’s a troublesome little phrase called “settled law” that would leave openings for all kinds of restrictions.

    Cutting out the parts of the BoR you do not like would be bad for everybody. Just sayin’

  247. 247
    ericblair says:

    @jrg:

    So, you think the response to something like: “The reality of alcohol in the home is domestic violence, health problems, and drunk driving.” Would NOT be “go fuck yourself, you fascist”?

    Yup. Truthfully, it would probably end up with a knock-down drag-out blog war between three different whisky snobs.

  248. 248
    gaz says:

    @Cris (without an H): Precisely.

    Even a noisy “kick me dog” is a good alarm system. Gives you time to get out, and gives an intruder some pause.

    And yeah – a big dog creates a physical problem for an unprepared intruder.

  249. 249
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    What if it was your wife and father?

  250. 250
    Li says:

    @RossInDetroit: No, no, you have that all wrong. It’s easier to defend yourself against an insane woman with a knife across the room than to defend yourself against an insane woman with a shotgun who is across the room. If she is in my face, I’ll gladly take the shotgun over the knife. I can at least try to grab the shotgun, but a knife? That would be far more difficult, if not outright impossible.

  251. 251
    Davis X. Machina says:

    After 20 years, I take guns, dope, abortion and prostitution automatically and pre-emptively off the table as topics in my HS debate class, not because the administration doesn’t want us going there — they don’t care, and leave me alone on such things, more power to them — but because I just don’t have the strength any more.

  252. 252
    gaz says:

    @RedKitten: Your post has so many errors that it would take too long to address them all.

    So I’ll do you a solid, and pretend you didn’t write it.

    Care to try again, with a little fact checking this time?

  253. 253
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Rafer Janders: Didn’t the article say that there were also signs of struggle, indicating that they tried to get the gun away from the mom?

    More importantly, there are all sorts of things that could have been used to kill the daughter and grandfather. Tying the fact that she went over the edge to the gun is focusing on the wrong thing.

    And no, I don’t buy into the argument that not having the gun would have prevented this, because we’ve had enough people die in this country, in a home, without a gun being involved.

    Now, what we could probably talk about is why she didn’t get help or try to get help when she started acting odd. Probably couldn’t afford the healthcare costs.

  254. 254
    brantl says:

    @kindness: Someone would paint you as hot-tempered? Heavens forfend, why would that happen, you hair-triggered pinhead?

  255. 255

    @Egg Berry: It’s a wonder we’re not all dead.

    We will be, given time.

    @Paul in KY: Now imagine if that distraught woman had an exploding candygram.

  256. 256
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe: How would that change the fact that the woman decided she was going to kill her child, her father-in-law, and herself?

    I have a shotgun in my house.

  257. 257
    eyelessgame says:

    @Pococurante:

    Let’s start with the gun murder/suicide numbers, 12,632 in 2007: “The majority of gun-related deaths in the United States are suicides,[5] with 17,352 (55.6%) of the total 31,224 firearm-related deaths in 2007 due to suicide, while 12,632 (40.5%) were homicide deaths.[6]” Automobile numbers, even while dropping are more than twice as high:”According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) early projections, the number of traffic fatalities fell three percent between 2009 and 2010, from 33,808 to 32,788.”

    Point of order here – you’re using the term “murder/suicide” wrong.

    You’re quoting 17,352 suicides PLUS 12,632 homicides. That winds up virtually identical to the number of automobile fatalities.

    12,632 isn’t “murder/suicide”. It’s just “murder”. 17,352 is “suicide”. The “murder/suicide” total is 29,984. Just from the statistics you quote.

    But it doesn’t matter either way. It wouldn’t change your mind if guns killed twice as many people as cars do, and it wouldn’t change the other side’s mind if cars really did kill twice as many people as guns do.

    What I think a lot of us non-gun-owners miss is that owning a gun really is as pleasurable, for gun owners, as alcohol or drugs, and/or as necessary as cars. The cultural divide is pretty large. We just don’t get it, I think, how important these things are to you.

  258. 258
    Gravenstone says:

    @kindness:

    How is it that you can be OK with responsible alcohol or drug use but not be willing to consider responsible and decent gun ownership?

    Becuase people don’t always act responsibly, even though they may intend to. It seems as if the woman in the story was a responsible gun owner, right up until the moment she stopped being so. Also, choosing to act irresponsibly with drugs or alcohol is unlikely to harm anyone else by themselves (introduce another medium, like a vehicle changes that statement considerably). Acting irresponsibly with a firearm by itself has immense potential to harm others. That’s all this bit of false equivalence boils down to.

  259. 259
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Emma: Yes, and the Republicans are not going to end Medicare either.

  260. 260
    Paul in KY says:

    @kindness: Happy Holidays to you too!

  261. 261
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    Your previous post suggested that it made very little difference to you that 2 people could have been saved if a gun was exchanged for a knife. So let me be a bit clearer — what if the 2 people who survived were your wife and father? Still no big deal?

  262. 262
    Paul in KY says:

    @Cris (without an H): I don’t even want to think about that…

  263. 263
    Larv says:

    Jesus Christ are there a lot of people missing the point here. The point of MM’s post was that, as a statistical matter, guns in the home are dangerous. Having a gun significantly increases your chance of being shot, whether by accident, suicide or homicide. Is anyone really disputing this? If you want to argue that the benefits of gun ownership outweigh the risks, go ahead and make that argument. I can certainly make that argument for car or alcohol ownership. I have no doubt that a good argument can be made for many modes of gun ownership. But you really do need to grapple with that and actually do the cost-benefit analysis, which many gun owners do not do. They cite the benefits of protection and recreation, but the increased risk is often minimized or ignored altogether. Nobody is telling you that you absolutely have to get rid of your guns, we’re just asking you to consider the very real and substantial costs along with the benefits.

  264. 264
    gaz says:

    I wish my state mandated firearm training for gun owners.

    Not that it would matter. There’s a “gun show” in my area at least once a month, and everybody can buy pretty much everything.

    Funny story, I know a guy (migrant worker, friendly, kinda gullible, but sweet – english isn’t so hot)… got talked into buying a gun at a gun show (he likes to make deer jerky I guess – and yeah shooting dear in a park is stupid and illegal – but these people are FOBs and seriously some don’t know better)

    Anyway – went to a gun show at our fairgrounds. Got talked into buying a gun, – ICE was patrolling the gun show. They always do. Picked him right up and deported him.

    I feel bad for him over what happened, if only because he didn’t know better – but I’m still glad that they watch for this, and do shit about it.

    However, the guy that sold him the gun didn’t even get a talking to by the ICE folks or local law enforcement. <— That's a huge problem.

    "Gun shows" are a great tool for criminals to get their hands on guns. Laws and restrictions around guns should be evenly enforced. If a guy on a street corner sold the gun to Estanislao, he would have been booked and charged on weapons trafficking…

  265. 265
    wrb says:

    @gaz:

    I’m pretty sure that the reason we have over 10,000 deaths due to firearms a year (last I heard a figure) and canada’s figures are much lower probably has a lot to do with poverty and desperation.

    Might have to do with purpose. People living close to the land primarily keep guns for practical purposes that don’t involve an intention to use them against people: they are for shooting critters to eat or shooting critters who would eat you or yours.

    Someone keeping a gun in the city has it to shoot people. Edit: I guess there are also people who like to target shoot for fun.

    (Exception: I did know a guy who spent a drunk winter blasting away rats with a pistol. Didn’t get many rats but shot the shit out of his house).

  266. 266

    @kindness: Happy Holidays all.

    @Paul in KY: Happy Holidays to you too!

    What do you people have against Christmas!?!

  267. 267
    brantl says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Cars kill more people each year than guns.

    So, if you have a car in the house, give your family the best Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa gift imaginable: get rid of the damn thing. You’ll still have the precious right to own one even if you don’t exercise it.

    Sometimes, the dumbassery nearly writes itself.

  268. 268
    gaz says:

    @wrb: I live in a small town, surrounded by woods, cabins, etc. We have massive areas of unincorporated land – my in-laws live on 20acres of woods, not-rezonable. In the middle of fucking nowhere.

    Google Issac Zamora sometime.

    Or Kyle Huff (the asshole that murdered my friends)

    Kyle brought his guns from Whitefish, MT. I’ve been there.

    Your post is just wrong.

  269. 269
    John Weiss says:

    Heh. I own a Walther PPK .38 pistol. There was a period when my wife and I were estranged, though we passed our year-old son back and forth freely.

    One night, he and I were sleeping (together) with my big orange tom. In the middle of the night, someone kicked in the door. I woke up, grabbed the pistol and confronted the would-be intruder. He saw me, buck naked with the pistol in my hand, turned around and ran. I fired a high shot to keep him honest.

    This is true. Had I not had a firearm, who knows? Before the incident and since I’ve always had a loaded firearm handy.

  270. 270
    Lojasmo says:

    @Veritas:

    And yet the US total gun violence rates at least 20x that of Japan. Discuss.

    All you gun-fuckers glad you have an ally in reality_check?

  271. 271
    brantl says:

    @The Moar You Know: Why do you bother with guns, when you have all that bile to be used as bullets?

  272. 272
    wrb says:

    @gaz:

    I live in a small town, surrounded by woods, cabins, etc. We have massive areas of unincorporated land – my in-laws live on 20acres of woods, not-rezonable. In the middle of fucking nowhere.Google Issac Zamora sometime.

    Damn. Is that you or an in-law? Anyway, I’m impressed.

    Seriously, I wasn’t suggesting that no one in fucking nowhere keeps a gun to shoot people, just that those in cities have little other reason to keep one, and that might explain part of the reason that a greater proportion of American gun owners shoot people.

  273. 273
    Trakker says:

    Late to the party (as usual), but kudos for your post, mistermix. I’m glad to see some on the left pushing back on the “everyone needs a gun for protection” attitude that now pervades our country.

    I acknowledge that there are people who need guns for protection, and I have nothing against serious hunters thinning the herd and putting meat on their tables. What I seriously object to is the gun culture in America where we make it ridiculously easy for criminals, the paranoid, the seriously depressed, and the mentally ill to get guns, no one is allowed to speak out against it.

    There is no easy solution, but I’m heartened that there are still some on the left who have the guts to expose themselves to the inevitable angry GFY comments and keep the discussion going.

  274. 274
    gaz says:

    @wrb: If that’s the case, I can accept that.

    And I live within 20minutes of my in-laws. They technically live in the same town I do.

  275. 275
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @John Weiss:

    Glad that worked for you. A dog and hiding behind the door with a baseball bat will have to work for me.

  276. 276
    kindness says:

    @brantl: You’re funny. Much of this thread deals with the ramifications of mental health gone astray. You might want to contact somebody. Sounds like it at least. It’ll help, really.

  277. 277
    Ian says:

    @Paul in KY:
    I would assume they would be there too rob, or maybe to find a place to stay on a cold night.
    I guess I just don’t immediately assume the worst of people

  278. 278
    Paul in KY says:

    @Cris (without an H): Just being inclusive, like a weenie liberal is supposed to be.

    Happy Festivus, Cris!

  279. 279
    gaz says:

    @Ian: Once somebody breaks into your home, the safe thing to do is to assume the worst of them.

    Or maybe you could make them a nice cup of cocoa, and give them a hug.

    Let me know how that works out for you, if you’re still alive enough to post that is.

  280. 280
    Ian says:

    @kindness:
    Whats funny is that your tagname is Kindness

  281. 281
    Ian says:

    @gaz:
    I have had people break into where I live, and I have been robbed at gunpoint.
    Still breathing.

  282. 282
    brantl says:

    @Emma: Emma, a shotgun is a genuine hunting tool, unless it is sawed-off.

  283. 283
    gaz says:

    @Ian: So the hugs help then?

    I’ve also been at the business end of an asshole with a gun, and lived to tell the tale.

    Doesn’t mean I’ll put ANYTHING past a home intruder.

    Then again, I had 4 close friends die over a man that was invited in a home, and whose only intent was to kill as many people as possible. He was laughing the entire time he was murdering.

  284. 284
    dollared says:

    Actually, there is no legitimate use for a shotgun except for hunting, and there is no use for a handgun anywhere but at a shooting range. And it’s very simple: Gun advocates are at heart Republicans, because they can’t do statistics.

    Guns are a public health problem. Offsite lockers are a simple solution that if applied broadly would save 5,000(very, very conservatively) lives per year.

    It’s really that simple. And people who oppose reasonable gun regulation and strict permitting for handguns are not only innumerate, they are publicly stating that those 5,000 extra deaths per year – 400,000 deaths in the average lifetime – are acceptable.

  285. 285
    Roc says:

    To be fair, absent the shotgun she could just as easily have bundled the family into the car under the auspices of driving the child to school and then barreled into a lake.

    Treating guns as the problem in situations like this isn’t very different from the security theatre that followed 9/11. There is, of course, a real difference. But an emotional over-reaction is wrong in both cases. Sober, practical analysis of the risks and ways to effectively defray them without unduly infringing liberty is the way to go.

    So I say: let’s talk about why she was ill/distraught, whether she was getting help (it seems not) and whether two-key gun cases should be pursued.

  286. 286
    Paul in KY says:

    @Lojasmo: I must say it has been a surreal and somewhat disturbing experience.

  287. 287
    Ian says:

    @Pococurante:
    The numbers you quote are from different years, but they still both add up to 30,000

  288. 288
    Paul in KY says:

    @Ian: If they want to rob, they can come when I’m not there. If they want to come in out of the cold, they can knock.

    I am a cynical person, I must confess.

  289. 289

    @John Weiss: He saw me, buck naked with the pistol in my hand, turned around and ran.

    Might not have been the gun that intimidated him. I’ve seen you naked, and it makes me pretty self-conscious too.

  290. 290
    Satanicpanic says:

    @Ian: I had someone break in. They ran before I could get the cocoa ready. I wasn’t holding a gun, I was holding a basket full of laundry, go figure.

  291. 291
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @jrg:

    Almost every argument against guns in this thread could be used against alcohol.

    Damn, I think a comment is in moderation because it used a brand name of a medication. But, to summarise it: certain analgesics are often used in lieu of guns as a suicide method, and they cause a very nasty death. In countries where there aren’t many guns but lots of pain pills, there are often restrictions on how many of those pills you can buy at one time.

    Now, is there sufficient value in having headache pills available over the counter that it offsets the risk of their use for nasty drawn-out suicides as a result of rash, impulsive actions? For sure. But there are also means of mitigating that risk.

  292. 292
    Soonergrunt says:

    @RedKitten:

    In MY neck of the woods, it means that we have the means to protect SamKitten from being mauled by a 175-lb pissed off black bear.

    That’s one small black bear.
    As I noted, to me, a gun is a tool, nothing more or less. It’s a very specialized tool, to be sure, but a tool all the same.

  293. 293
    Paul in KY says:

    @dollared: Why do I have to resort to 16th century weapons (sword, mace, war hammer, etc.) to defend myself?

    My guns are for my protection. I do have 2 I use for hunting, but they are somewhat impractical for quick protection.

  294. 294
    Ian says:

    @gaz:
    Totally. It was the hugs that kept me alive. Not acting sane and rationally.
    I am sorry to hear about your loss, and it is sad that insane people do insane things.
    I think you assume certain things that I have not said. I am all for sane, rational people owning guns. That being said, having a gun on me at the time of the incidents I was refering to would probably have lead to me being killed when I would have pulled it out on the intruder

  295. 295
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe: That’s exactly the case.

  296. 296
    gaz says:

    @Paul in KY: There are safer, more effective ways to protect yourself than a weapon that can easily be used against you – especially while you are sleeping.

  297. 297
    Jnc says:

    The police will protect you against crime. No need for guns

  298. 298
    Jnc says:

    The police will protect you against crime. No need for guns

  299. 299
  300. 300
    dollared says:

    @Paul in KY: Exactly my point. You are innumerate. You think your gun is being used for your self defense, but having them makes you less safe. Statistically proven fact.

    I assume you also want to self-direct the investment of your IRA and your Social Security funds. That also results in lower returns, but by God they will have to pry your investment self-direction from your cold dead mouse.

  301. 301
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Veritas: You are rather stupid, (and one is amazed that you can type–someone downloaded firefox with spell check for you, right) but when I said that the research holds within societies, that’s what I meant.
    Now, being stupid, you don’t get that while the standard of living in Kazakhstan is not as high as it is here, the rate of internalizing violence by the Kazakh upper class is, relative to the rate exhibited by the Kazakh lower class, very similar to the rate of internalizing violence by the American upper class relative to the American lower class. People of normal intelligence could figure that out from the context. You, of course–well.
    Do you have a CD playing in the background with the phrase “Breathe in…Breathe out…Breathe in…Breathe out” on endless repeat? Cause I just don’t see how you make it from day to day otherwise.

  302. 302
    gaz says:

    @Ian: Yeah, the gun on you wouldn’t have helped.

    Specifically, the point where we disagree is arguably a minor one.

    I put nothing past a home intruder. Particularly an armed home intruder.

    I know three things about an armed intruder:
    They are a felon – (residential burglary is a felony in my state – precisely because of the danger it creates for the people that live in the home).

    They are armed – they expect resistance (they are armed)

    They are potentially, quite violent, possibly at least a little insane – and almost certainly desperate (in one way or another – or they wouldn’t be breaking in in the first place).

    I won’t give them the benefit of any doubt. That’s where you and I disagree.

    Adding, if I wasn’t sure they were armed, I’d assume they were.

  303. 303
    kindness says:

    @Ian:

    Whats funny is that your tagname is Kindness

    *kindness. I don’t own it, just use it.

    I blame the intertubes. That and the DFH’s who won’t get off my lawn.

    @Jnc: Dude? Where the hell do you live, Mayberry?

  304. 304
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Paul in KY:

    Why use extremely lethal 20th century weapons when you can reduce someone to jelly with a far less lethal taser gun?

  305. 305
    Paul in KY says:

    @gaz: They have to be in bed right beside me to get it. Realistically, there’s alot of non-weapon stuff they can just pick up to bludgeon you with. Big knives in the kitchen, etc.

  306. 306
    gaz says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe: Funny you mention tasers. I was just talking to a friend of mine about police, pepper spray, and tasers. Personally, other than maybe in riot situations, I think the only weapons a beat cop should have are a nightstick, a gun, a police radio, and a partner. Notice I said beat cop – SWAT for example, is a whole ‘nother ball of wax, which I won’t address.

    The bad thing about non-lethal weapons in the hands of law enforcement, is that both the cop, and the criminal know it’s not lethal. That creates problems. Maybe more than it helps.

    Maybe I just haven’t googled thoroughly enough, but I have yet to find a statistic that says tasers in the hands of cops saves lives. I’m inclined to believe they cost lives.

  307. 307
    Paul in KY says:

    @dollared: You don’t bring a knife or a club or a mace to a gun fight. If they come in with a gun, it is automatically a ‘gun fight’.

  308. 308
    gaz says:

    @Paul in KY: Oh geez. A magnum under the pillow. I hope you don’t have children that live in your home.

    If I needed that level of security, I’d get a dog or two.

  309. 309
    Paul in KY says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe: If you could literally reduce them to jelly, I might get one. Problem with tazers is that both electrodes (or whatever they are called) have to contact flesh. One in flesh & one in leather jacket means tazer no workee.

    Also see my comment #307.

  310. 310
    brantl says:

    @Li: Strategically and tactically, you’re an idiot.

  311. 311
    Paul in KY says:

    @gaz: I drink & live alone. Only way I can keep one unsecured like that.

  312. 312
    gaz says:

    @Paul in KY: Ahhh. Well in that case, more power to ya.

  313. 313
    The Moar You Know says:

    Still standing, fuckers.

    I can’t avoid kicking the beehive, it’s in my nature.

  314. 314
    Mnemosyne says:

    @wrb:

    After a few months of peace, a cougar got one of our kids on each of the last two, nights, so getting a gun is sounding mighty practical.

    Here’s the thing: at least you’re willing to say, “I need a gun to kill things.” You live out in the country, you keep livestock that predators are interested in, and you may need to kill those predators.

    I also understand why people living in rural areas might need guns for home protection — when the nearest sheriff is 20 minutes away or more, you may need to kill an intruder yourself. And if people like to hunt animals (actually hunt, not shoot animals in a cage) and then eat them, I have no plans to lobby to take your guns away.

    But at least fucking admit that’s what you have the gun for, not “target shooting.” You have the gun so you can kill animals or people that you think might threaten you or your family. If you think have a gun in your house for any other purpose, you’re just fooling yourself, because it’s not designed to do anything else.

  315. 315
    dollared says:

    @Paul in KY: And you don’t bring a gun to a bedroom fight with your wife, child or personal demons. So what’s your point. I’m talking about statistics. You’re talking about a personal defense fantasy.

  316. 316
    brantl says:

    @kindness:

    Much of this thread deals with the ramifications of mental health gone astray. You might want to contact somebody. Sounds like it at least. It’ll help, really.

    Funny, that’s exactly what I thought about you.

  317. 317
    brantl says:

    @kindness:

    Much of this thread deals with the ramifications of mental health gone astray. You might want to contact somebody. Sounds like it at least. It’ll help, really.

    Funny, that’s exactly what I thought about you.

  318. 318
    gaz says:

    @dollared: As long as Paul lives alone, I don’t see the problem with him sleeping with a gun, as far as I’m concerned.

    He’s speaking about his specific circumstances. He even said it was the only way he’d keep a gun unsecured and at the ready.

    Personally, I really don’t see a problem there, in that case. The statistics do not speak about his particular circumstance.

  319. 319
    gaz says:

    @brantl: If you’re going to shamelessly flame, could you at least try to avoid wasting even more real-estate than you already are?

    It’s not entertaining, so if you could keep it to a minimum (or be more clever) you’d be doing the rest of the commenters here a service.

    Ixnay on the duplicate posts.

    Thanks.

  320. 320
    Mnemosyne says:

    BTW, I was raised around guns. My dad kept guns so he could kill things (he liked to duck hunt). And he always made it very clear that his guns were not toys — they were designed to kill, and we should leave them alone unless we were prepared to do that. They were always locked up in a secure room that only he had a key to.

    He still brags about how, at the age of 11, I outscored all of the grown men who took the same hunter’s education course that I did. :-)

  321. 321
    gaz says:

    @Mnemosyne: My wife can shoot better than anyone else I know (cept maybe our fathers). Her dad used to make her pull the lever for the clay launcher. She was trained to use .357 by age 15. I don’t know how she managed to fire the damned thing, but she can. =P

  322. 322
    Paul in KY says:

    @dollared: They came in with a gun on a good friend of mine. Beat the shit out of him & he was able to keep the gun from firing by getting his hand between the trigger & the firing pin. He’s still not back to normal after a year.

    It is not a ‘fantasy’, it is a ‘strategy’.

  323. 323
    The Moar You Know says:

    Recommend reading this:

    Dial 911 and Die

    Yeah, it’s full of conservative horseshit, but the premise is dead accurate – where I live (specifically) and where quite a few people live, you won’t get the police to your home in under 20 minutes. Not going to happen. If somebody is bent on doing you harm, 20 minutes is enough time to kill you, dig a grave, bury your sorry unarmed ass, and drive off while smoking their post-murder cigarette.

    Combine this with my area’s penchant for regional disasters that take the cops out of the picture for days at a time, and maybe you can begin to see the wisdom for some folks of keeping arms.

    I do recommend a GOOD gun safe.

  324. 324
    gaz says:

    @The Moar You Know: The only safe way to keep a gun in your home is to either live alone as Paul does, or keep it locked up, which prevents your ability to get it in a situation where you’d need quick police response. That’s the conundrum.

    There are simple ways around that. Again, get a dog. Or two.

    If nothing else that affords you the time to take the safest, most rational response, which is to get the fuck out of the hot zone, and notify the police from a safe distance. Keeping your car keys under the pillow may be better than the gun, if personal safety is what you are after.

  325. 325
    Liz says:

    I only made it to post #172, and my conclusion is that people watch too much TV or something. Buncha action movie fans here. I find a dog or two is often a good deterrent, if you’re worried about home invasion.

    Very interesting read, though.

  326. 326
    dollared says:

    @Paul in KY: We’ll never reach you. You reason by anecdote.

    Or if the crime rate is higher than Medellin in your neighborhood (of course it isn’t), then maybe a smart person would move?

    My dad died of a heart attack. Should I get a prophylactic heart transplant?

  327. 327
    dollared says:

    @gaz: This. strong locks and doors work wonders, but don’t involve heroic personal danger fantasies.

  328. 328
    Jacquie says:

    I’m not gonna jump into the gun control debate here. I just wanted to say that I’ve been following this story, too, and thank you for a heartfelt post. That is all; please resume yelling.

  329. 329
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Mnemosyne: I actually do target shooting. A lot more often than I go hunting, which I do, but rarely.
    I will never shoot a gun at another human being. I’ve had enough of that. Anybody who breaks into my house will be met with a functioning alarm system. Assuming they decide that they want to risk the neighborhood full of cops. Therein they won’t find anything worth the effort that isn’t properly secured, cataloged, and insured. We live in Tornado Alley, so the safe room was installed for the most likely threat, but will work for this too.
    But target shooting is a valid sport and a valid reason to own guns.

  330. 330
    somegayname says:

    @mistermix: This way the gun can never be retrieved if you are feeling distraught and suicidal. genius.

    Also too, guns are why we are at the top of the world suicide rates….(except for the 40 countries with higher rates). Spend some time on the CDC (WISQARS or WONDER) Limiting cheeseburgers and turning off the elevators would save many more lives, but those types of deaths are not as spectacular and therefore not as interesting.

  331. 331
    Roc says:

    @dollared: It’s uncool to lump second amendment concerns in with your larger problems with Republicans.

    All sorts of individual liberties can become public health concerns when abused. Cars, drugs, alcohol, etc. We allow people to have alcohol at home, even though some will abuse it and only allowing alcohol consumption in properly monitored locations would be safer. And we allow people to have (some) drugs at home, even though some will abuse them and only allowing drug consumption in properly monitored locations would be safer. And we allow people to have cars at home, and to operate them after passing only the simplest of tests, and don’t place pre-ignition tests on them based on what might happen when others abuse them, even though we could easily and cheaply make them safer.

    If you want to argue that we should subsidize an industry of off-site gun lockers and encourage their use, I will agree with that, support that and vote for that. But I think it’s very simply wrong to *mandate* that.

  332. 332
    dance around in your bones says:

    @Soonergrunt:as said to Satire V:

    Thanks for proving the point you worthless fuckstain of a festering puddle of shit and rotting intestinal tissues.

    Epic.

  333. 333
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Soonergrunt:

    Yes, but you were in the Army. You know and understand full well what the intended purpose of a gun is. You know that you are choosing to use it for target practice instead of its intended purpose.

    And presumably you know that saying “I only use it for target practice” doesn’t magically remove the danger of using it or mean that if you only use it for target practice, that means no one else can use it for anything else, either.

  334. 334
    Paul in KY says:

    @dollared: I don’t understand what the big deal is. I live alone. I only ever pick up the gun (one I keep for self-defense) to clean it about every 6 months. I am ex-military, trained in gun safety, am very concious about my own safety (so no accidental self-shootings).

    Just don’t ever break into my house (when I am there) & we should all be OK.

  335. 335
    kindness says:

    @Mnemosyne: Still, you’re being quite the dick in saying those of us who use our guns for target practice are lying or we shouldn’t have them because that isn’t a good enough reason in your opinion. Your opinion is the only reason people want guns is to terrorize & kill other people. You realize you are in the same mind frame as the idiots you are describing there bucko? Look in the mirror buddy. It’s a big country and I’m glad you can’t tell me what my motivations are because you’ve shown yourself to be lacking in that department.

    My gun’s intended purpose is to put holes in used cans and paper targets. Get over it.

  336. 336
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    If you think have a gun in your house for any other purpose, you’re just fooling yourself, because it’s not designed to do anything else.

    That’s the problem I have with certain shades of the “guns are just tools” line of argument, which, when used to equate guns with, say, chainsaws, is usually made by people who clearly don’t consider their guns to be anything like chainsaws.

  337. 337
    somegayname says:

    @Mnemosyne: how does this magical ‘true intended purpose’ of an inanimate object make any difference?

  338. 338
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @kindness: If you think “to terrorize & kill other people” means the same as “kill animals or people that you think might threaten you or your family”, which is what Mnemosyne actually said, then I question your ability to shoot straight.

  339. 339
    dollared says:

    @Roc: I strongly support the 2nd amendment. I agree with 90% of all the Supreme Court justices in US history, who believed it applied to state militias.

    Guns are killing devices that should be strictly regulated. Cars are essential transportation devices that can’t be owned without individual, strict registration, no one can drive one without being state certified and no one can drive one without automobile-specific insurance.

    Race cars are not allowed on roads. Unsafe cars are impounded. Cars for killing are specifically prohibited.

    I’d be up for that level of regulation for guns.

  340. 340
    dollared says:

    @Paul in KY: In my perfect world you would be free to do exactly what you want to do. With a hunting rifle or a shotgun, as long as you register it, pass a strict course in firearms training, and have a current hunting permit.

    That is all.

  341. 341
    Ruckus says:

    @John’s Minions:
    OK I’ll jump in the mix here as well.
    I like your point about tools. I have carried a gun for my job, I have actually carried one illegally when carrying thousands of dollars in cash(the money was legal, the gun, not so much). I have had guns in the house, as I still do. And if there was a way to outlaw them realistically, I wouldn’t mind cutting mine up into little pieces. Guns are made to kill things. Yes you can plink at cans and such, yes they are fun to shoot at targets, but their reason for being is to kill things. Years ago I had a gun stolen in a break in when I was not there. That gun is in the hands of a criminal. Has anyone been killed with it? I have no clue. It was inherited, I have no idea of the serial number, so it’s not traceable to me, but people may be dead because of me, just the same. I haven’t pulled the trigger but what is the difference?
    Yes there are millions of guns and if they all killed someone we all would be dead. Yes we all do something every day for which thousands die every year. That’s driving a car by the way. An every day act for which too many die. And that’s the point. Cars have been made safer, much safer and people still die in and around them. If we make guns safer people will still die needlessly. What if anything is the answer?

  342. 342
    Paul in KY says:

    @dollared: I’d be fine with that.

    Happy Holidays, I’m gone for the weekend.

  343. 343
    Recall says:

    @Jack the Second: “In fifty years I think people are going to be appalled when they learn how many people died in automobile accidents before they were invented, and how cavalier we all were about the risks.”

    It will probably acquire a Mad Men mystique.

  344. 344
    dance around in your bones says:

    @gaz:

    You want home security? Get a dog.
    Much safer, and more effective.

    You know what’s even MORE effective? Geese. I used to live on an old ranch, and I swear, the geese would start honking WAAAAAY before the dogs when a car/truck/person/random Mormon on a bike etc showed up at the gate that was half a mile away.

    This is obviously not a solution most people can utilize, but thought I’d throw it out there just for GP’s.

  345. 345
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @dance around in your bones:

    You know what’s even MORE effective? Geese.

    Near where I was brought up, there’s a 160-acre organic farm run by the local council as a safe residential environment for special-needs adults: they raise animals and crops, and sell their goods at markets and at the farm itself.

    It has geese patrolling the front gate. You don’t fuck with a goose.

  346. 346
    wrb says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Here’s the thing: at least you’re willing to say, “I need a gun to kill things.” You live out in the country, you keep livestock that predators are interested in, and you may need to kill those predators.

    Before getting a gun (I’ve usually had one, just don’t at the moment) I called the federal tracker. He’s already here and for the first time found a carcass, giving his dogs a place to start. Their belling is echoing across the valleys. Little-known soslist service offered by big govmint.

    I also understand why people living in rural areas might need guns for home protection—when the nearest sheriff is 20 minutes away

    Try 2 hours or more. Due to the recession the county cut back from 14 deputies to 6, and that includes the detective and the guy who sits with prisoners during trials. So coverage of 15000 square miles, 24/7 is split between 4 guys. However the county did reduce their salaries so they can now qualify for food stamps.

  347. 347
    Cheap Jim says:

    @kindness: Dude, I dig.

    Wait, posting that while calling oneself “kindness” is ironic performance art, right?

  348. 348
    Recall says:

    @kindness: You don’t have to be lying to be dangerous, you just have to be thin-skinned and impulsive, which is how you’re coming across right now.

  349. 349
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    And presumably you know that saying “I only use it for target practice” doesn’t magically remove the danger of using it or mean that if you only use it for target practice, that means no one else can use it for anything else, either.

    This much is true. Which is why I don’t have a problem requiring people to own two-factor-secure gun safes. I also think that owners should be subject to criminal/civil liabilities for anything that happens with their guns. If somebody steals your gun and you didn’t take reasonable precautions to prevent it, I think you should be criminally liable for involuntary manslaughter and civilly liable for wrongful death.

  350. 350
    Jnc says:

    This post inspired me to go to the range this a.m. And finally sight in my new Sig 556 that I got a couple,of months ago.

    Managed somehow to put 200 rounds through it without killing anyone, so I guess I wasn’t using it properly, since killing folks is its only purpose…

  351. 351
    dead existentialist says:

    I don’t have a rifle, but I do have a gun. It isn’t for fighting; it’s only for fun.

  352. 352
    Jack the Second says:

    @Jnc

    There was a number floating around the internet a few months back about how the US forces in Iraq & Afghanistan fired 250,000 bullets for every insurgent killed.

    Oddly, given the figures I found for the United States (10 billion bullets per year, 30,000 gun deaths), this is only slightly different than the domestic rate of 333,000 bullets fired for every person killed.

  353. 353

    @Jack the Second: 333,000 bullets fired for every person killed

    Sounds like Sonny Corleone’s death.

  354. 354
    Herbal Infusion Bagger says:

    Gun deaths are the price we pay so that gun owners can stroke their gunz and feel safe, masculine and powerful. defend themselves and the ones they love.

    Yeah, I see Penelope Luddy defended the ones she loved.
    All the way to the grave.

  355. 355
    dollared says:

    @Paul in KY: And to you. Enjoy the weekend.

  356. 356
    Andrew Brown Cow says:

    @kindness: Wow way to completely misread a post, yeah you sound like one of the completely reasonable gun owners that we need not fear.

  357. 357
    gaz says:

    @dance around in your bones: Pretty sure you are right about those geese.

    I had a neighbor with geese once – they were load *and* mean.

    Also, during my more urban-period I found that seattlelites know better than to fuck with the geese at the 520 “arboretum”… heh.

    I haz a friend that has caught the odd turtle there – heh. We gave the geese a wide birth.

  358. 358
    Anne Laurie says:

    @Virginia Highlander:

    I shall retain the means to kill myself on short notice for as long as I can, thank you very much. The idea gives me great comfort.

    Believe me, I understand your reasoning. After all due consideration, I decided it would be just as comforting to have a final-escape-tool that required a little more deliberation. Even SG’s two-gun-safe model — give yourself five minutes of focus to be sure it’s not a passing impulse, okay?

    @Ivan Ivanovich Renko:

    Anyone who attempts to “clean” a loaded weapon is a walking advert for a Darwin award.

    One of the oldest cliches in mystery novels, but still true: Some not-insignificant portion of those “accidental death while cleaning a loaded weapon” are suicides where the coroners don’t want to further punish the grieving survivors, or trigger further legal investigations. Again, some of those “accidents” would have found other means — Madoff’s kid hung himself with his dog’s leash, IIRC, and it didn’t matter to him whether it was his ex-wife or his toddler son who discovered the body — but in an honest world they’d be in the suicide statistical column, too.

  359. 359
    FromTheBackOfTheRoom says:

    Strip away all the tough-guy bluster from the gun-nuts and the pathetic attempts to justify their fetish with statistical strawmen and their fapping to fantasies of being the last man standing in some dystopian future and you’ll find cowardice.

    Pathetic quivering weakness.

  360. 360
    kindness says:

    yea. Fetish.

    You folks have weird sex urges, you know?

  361. 361
    Andrew Brown Cow says:

    @Jnc: Do you realize how dumb you sound when you post comments like this? The fact that soooo many gun owners get reflexively defensive when anyone talks about maybe making it harder for certain members of the community to not have easy access to firearms highlights, to me anyway, that supposedly responsible gun owners, such as jnc, are just Selfish Children and they should be added to the lists of people who shouldn’t be allowed near firearms.

  362. 362
    Pococurante says:

    @eyelessgame:

    What I think a lot of us non-gun-owners miss is that owning a gun really is as pleasurable, for gun owners, as alcohol or drugs, and/or as necessary as cars. The cultural divide is pretty large. We just don’t get it, I think, how important these things are to you.

    What I think, is that gun owners like myself are trying to get over is that, it doesn’t matter what is in the house when a person so alone and alienated wants to check out. And hurt others.

    Guns are just grease on the rails.

    We don’t believe grease and rails are the problem. Except in this one case it seems to have traction.

    Poor policy. No different than the drug war arguments.

  363. 363
    dance around in your bones says:

    @gaz:

    Was away all day with the monkeys (otherwise known as grandkids) but really, geese are the baddest of the bad. They will chase your ass even if you are trying to feed them. We had geese that lived with us all the time but we also had Canadian snow geese that overwintered every year. They were bastardos. They crap everywhere, too.

    However, they ARE the best ‘first alarm’ system ever invented.

  364. 364

    What I think a lot of us non-gun-owners miss is that owning a gun really is as pleasurable, for gun owners, as alcohol or drugs, and/or as necessary as cars. The cultural divide is pretty large.

    Actually, for a lot of people, being told that maybe they shouldn’t have guns in their house is the same as being told “you shouldn’t drink (or smoke pot, or, maybe you could take the bus to work once or twice a week)”.

    I don’t *need* to drink; I often stop for months at a time, just because I want to. But if someone tells me I should stop drinking, that raises my hackles. How *dare* they!

    And that can make me want to have a drink or two, just to spite them.

    Tribalism runs deep.

  365. 365
    dance around in your bones says:

    Also, with all this talk about suicide, thought Dorothy Parker’s musing on the topic might be useful.

    Razors pain you;
    Rivers are damp;
    Acids stain you;
    And drugs cause cramp.
    Guns aren’t lawful;
    Nooses give;
    Gas smells awful;
    You might as well live.

  366. 366
    Sandra says:

    She could have easily taken them out with poison. If you take the guns away people will just resort to making bombs. Knives are far more dangerous, they kill more often when used. I am guessing that this article is just a way to raise attention for media to “get rid of guns” campaign. They are already taking our freedoms away from us now. When the crap goes down, don’t come to me for help.

  367. 367
    RossInDetroit says:

    @Sandra:

    I’m continually amazed to see the effort and force of will that people will put into not seeing the most obvious fact: Lots of things are equally fatal, but identical outcome doesn’t mean identical hazard. Guns, where available, are the overwhelming choice for crimes of passion.

    You say she could use a knife or poison. She probably had them available, as most homes do. Why didn’t she use them? Because they are far less certain than a shotgun.

  368. 368
    dance around in your bones says:

    You know, fer gawd’s sake…..guns have their place and time in certain situations.

    But in many other situations, they just make it a fuck of a lot easier to kill people.

    Let’s don’t everybody lose it about this stupid issue.

    (did you notice I didn’t say “loose” it? hahahahhaa)

  369. 369
    Recall says:

    @Pococurante: No. There has been plenty of research done on this. When Britain stopped using coal gas, their suicide rate dropped dramatically.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07.....wanted=all

    “Public-health officials like Hemenway can point to a mountain of research going back 40 years that shows that the incidence of firearm suicide runs in close parallel with the prevalence of firearms in a community. In a 2007 study that grouped the 15 states with the highest rate of gun ownership alongside the six states with the lowest (each group had a population of about 40 million), Hemenway and his associates found that when it came to all nonfirearm methods, the two populations committed suicide in nearly equal numbers. The more than three-times-greater prevalence of firearms in the “high gun” states, however, translated into a more than three-times-greater incidence of firearm suicides, which in turn translated into an annual suicide rate nearly double that of the “low gun” states.”

  370. 370
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Jnc:

    This post inspired me to go to the range this a.m. And finally sight in my new Sig 556 that I got a couple,of months ago.

    So, exactly like a chainsaw. Either you don’t know how petulant that comes across, or you don’t care.

  371. 371
    Jnc says:

    @Jnc: The fact that soooo many gun owners get reflexively defensive when anyone talks about maybe making it harder for certain members of the community to not have easy access to firearms highlights, to me anyway, that supposedly responsible gun owners, such as jnc, are just Selfish Children and they should be added to the lists of people who shouldn’t be allowed near firearms.

    Actually, I was responding to the OP and others who said there is no purpose for guns other than to kill people. How you came to view my post as opposing “certain members of the community … hot having easy access to firearms” just shows that you are arguing against some imaginary position, rather than what I posted. Do you know how dumb that sounds?

    you don’t know how petulant that comes across

    So, what do _you_ think the word petulant means?

  372. 372
    Stentor says:

    Umm, I disagree, but I am going to politely suggest you advocate using trigger locks on guns instead of getting rid of them, a far more sensible suggestion, and much more likely to be implemented and less likely to arouse the kind of hostility evident in some people’s comments.

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