Thursday, March 17, 2005

Back to guns....

This comment was oddly enough found under my Jerrymandering Post...

Back to GUN CONTROL and such - Do you REALLY need a gun? When was the last time YOU had a war on your front doorstep? Despite all the media hype about terrorism, there's no arguing that we are probably the safest nation on the face of the planet. Take a trip down to Congo where life expectancy is below 40 thanks to constant strife and disease - now compare that your life now. Do you fear for your life as you drive to your work? Do you worry that there will be no food at the grocery store for your family to eat? Consider that as you drive your import auto to work and pick up your Starbucks.

We have it damn good. But these arguements about removing gun control laws from the books is just silly. Like it or not, laws = order. No, it's not a 100% solution, but I would argue that living in a society with limited rights and order is much better than living in a society with unlimited rights, becuase chaos would engulf society. Think about it - if we had unlimited rights, we would without a doubt impact other individuals, which would cause those individuals to impact others. Undoubtedly, this would cause a chain reaction that result in chaos or disorder - whichever comes first. And, as we all learned in poli-sci, at that point - a leader would emerge, and then we would be back into a society with laws to promote order.

You can't baulk history - now go back to reading your McPaper.

It’s a little early for me to really go on a rant, but I have to reply before I can start working this morning…

When was the last time I fought a war on my front steps? About 4 years ago, for a week or two when I lived with my brother in his crack neighborhood. After a dispute with the local crack dealer that ended in 12 bullet holes in his house and some return fire the police suggested that my brother move. Move, that was it. I’m not saying moving is a bad idea, it’s actually a good one, but moving wasn’t the option one would expect from the police. Since then, guns are always present and readily available in that house. Knowledge that there WILL BE an armed response has kept the peace in the neighborhood. A peace that the police can’t or won’t enforce.

Wait a minute, didn’t I read somewhere that “Law=Order?” Surely “Law=Can’t discharge a firearm within city limits” (I said discharge). I bet there is a “Law=No Attempted Murder”. Hmmm maybe then at least “Law=Sometimes Order”

However, I’m sure that’s not what you meant by fighting a war at the front door. You’re speaking of the armed revolution. The reason the founding fathers gave us the Second Amendment, that outdated and silly idea. Maybe you didn’t hear, these things called Amendments to the Constitution of the United States of America, they grant us things called “rights” that “limit” the scope of power the government has. One of those rights is the right to keep and bear arms.

I think it’s funny people don’t think we need arms to protect our rights from an oppressive government because we have the Constitution, so they want to ban and seize guns thereby violating the 2nd, 4th, and 5th Amendments to that Constitution. Logic, it’s a bitch.

You speak of “laws=order” Good one RJR. Where do laws get their force? I mean, just because there is a law doesn’t mean compliance is automatic. People respect law for 3 reasons (if all your political theories came from Poli-Sci class, you many not know this. Independent thought is required here). 1) Convenience; its easier to follow the law than not. 2) Moral obligation; you have a sense of right or wrong that matches legal restraints placed on you. 3) Fear; you are afraid of the possible outcomes for your transgression.

Now, law=order, and law is only effective if it’s convenient, you agree with it, or you fear cops. That’s great! That is until it’s not convenient, you don’t agree with it, or you just don’t care. At which point, laws get broken. You speed down the highway. You take more than one wife (good for you). You kill a guy for a pack of over taxed smokes.

Or, in the case of the American Revolution, you break the laws, you end the order, and start a new nation. The Second Amendment gives the people the authority and means to effectively resist bad laws. The right to bear arms is less about fending off the British and Canadians and more about fighting our own tyrannical government.

I submit to you the reason we don’t have violence like we do in the Congo is because we have guns, because we can keep our government in check and because we can defend ourselves. Bitch and complain all you want at the point some law becomes unbearable to you, without the ability to resist it, well…. “Baaaaaaaa”

Sure today we aren’t about to have a revolution, but why take away that option from our grandchildren or their grandchildren?

In the mean time, the right to keep and bear arms is used countless times to protect lives. Just as the threat to use force (fear) keeps people from breaking the law (your ORDER), fear of armed reprisal (our guns) keeps people from robbing, assaulting and raping. Ask the British how their ban on firearms is working out for them.

BTW, Your Chaos theory? Bulk History? What the fuck are you talking about

Otter - Early to work so its early to the bar on this wonderful St. Patricks Day!


Blogger Chowda said...

How can you compare a "crack neighborhood" to the average American community? Yes, neighborhoods like you mention do exist - but not to the extent that the MAJORITY of Americans experience this type of lifestyle on a daily basis. Now I know what you are thinking - cities are huge and they experience situations like you mention. Well, then I pose to you - why did San Francisco just make the one of the most liveable cities in the entire world and Baghdad listed as the last one?

So I happily reject your example and replace it with this concept - social norms create order sans guns. Walt Disney, argueably created the "line." Now to understand the importance of the "line" picture Disney World, in the middle of the summer, without lines - but masses of people waiting in no particular order for no particular ride at once. That, my friend, is how social norms create order - no guns needed.

Now to this document "the Constitution" that you mention - which by the way, was written by elite individuals to protect their interests because the general public was too ignorant to see the big picture. I have a hard time putting faith in a document that was defended with citizen blood, but created to shield the wealthy. Talk about the fleece of America...besides - laws are not static - every law evolves over time. Why can't gun control evolve to the 21st century?

Now - back to your McPaper...

11:02 AM  
Blogger The Management said...

First of all, you my friend are a crack smoker.

Second, if bans on guns make cities safer, move to Chicago or DC. Not calling violence a norm? Read http://www.taotechuck.com/

Third, being that the Founding Fathers WERE the wealthy and the powerful, they had the most to loose. All they had to do was play along and pay more taxes (something most now happily do). The Creators of this Nation risked their money and lives for something better. They were the ones that would pay if their experiment failed. Your disrespect for them and the "ignorant" men they lead sickens me.

Also, I found it really interesting that you mentioned "lines" as a great benefit of a gun free society. Soviet Union had lots of lines and no guns as well. Makes you wonder.

Lastly, the Constitution is not a LIVING DOCUMENT. Rights are not fashions to be cast aside (or created at will, read the Slaughterhouse 5 Post below).

Otter, t-minus 2.5 hours to the bar.

11:47 AM  
Blogger The Management said...

Just taking a quick look at my "McPaper" (an awfully elitist commentary on our ability to express our 1st amendment freedoms BTW), and I saw this comment.

First, he just answered your question. It was about 4 years ago where Otter, a law abiding citizen, defended his family's property by use of a firearm. Second, the apparent logical fallacy in your argument is that, according to you, gun laws serve to protect the elite, yet you casually dismiss the needs of those people who are "not average" by suggesting that we should just ignore the plight of people who live in crack neighborhoods.

Moreover, Baghdad is the least liveable city in the world because for about 25 years its people had no rights under Saddam and no means to oust him. Gun laws protect us from the government. Also, "social norms create order sans guns?" I'm not sure how to exactly counter that argument other than to say that I don't think that's a supportable conclusion. No society doesn't on some level have an enforcement power that doesn't rely on guns (eg. the police). What if the social norm in a given society is to oppress people based on their inability to defend their basic human rights - you know, like WOMEN in Saudi Arabia?

Moreover, lines - that's what you came up with - Disney has a market interest in establishing lines at their facilities. If they didn't create lines, no one would show up. Further, if someone refuses to obey the rules, they are escorted out of the park by "Armed" security officials. There's an example of private use of guns to protect a property interest.

Finally, your discussion of the Constitution again contains some pretty substantial contradictions. If, in fact, the Constitution "[were] written by elite individuals to protect their interests because the general public was too ignorant to see the big picture," why did it include the right to keep and bear arms? Moreover, it shows a disturbing lack of historical knowledge in that many "eliet" people who fought against the British lost EVERYTHING - well, everything except their freedom. I guess they thought it was worth the trade-off - too bad you don't.

Also, while laws may not be static, it is clear to me that "Rights" are (or should be) static, as I believe they are intrinsic and immalleable, regardless of "social norms." Finally, Otter pretty much ruled you with his comment on the lines in the Soviet Union - Ruled.

Anyway, if you don't like our "McPaper," why don't you go start your own. I promise I won't make inflammatory and baseless comments on your "McPaper." Still, we appreciate your participation - I think the easy refutation of your arguments has prepared me to deal with the more low-brow arguments I'm sure to encounter in the future.

Happy St. Patty's day.

Kid Handsome.

12:10 PM  
Blogger Chowda said...

Welcome to the arguement over symantics - let's be clear. We live in a society that has gun control. Period. We currently have laws on the books that "regulate" guns. I'm fine with that "level" of gun control. Removing that regulation, I think would be putting blind faith in the ignorant masses.

That being said laws do not necessarily equate to safety or security, however they provide the necessary backing to get society to understand that there are others to think about besides themselves. That's the key. Now you keep brining up these cities that have problems with violence. Do you honestly think that removing gun restrictions would somehow REDUCE levels of violence in these cities? You would have vigilente justice rampant through the streets - who would be right? All that would do would get more people killed because PEOPLE DON'T KILL PEOPLE - GUNS DO.

But I digress - Our country was founded on capitalism. To enable the wealthy elite to continue to be wealthy. I admire your undying patriotism, but honestly, read some history books and you'll see that it wasn't all about the general public. It was about buinsessmen protecting their interests. The byproduct was a country that supported their ability to be rich. Yes, it's a great place to live - I love America - we have a rich history - but there are purely economic reasons why we are here today. And to base a belief on having unlimited gun use on a document that was written hundreds of years ago is like taking the Bible at face value.

and if the Constitution isn't a living document - what are ammendments Mr. Smith?

12:26 PM  
Anonymous Chuck said...

RJR, your argument drives me crazy. Not your stance, because I probably agree with a fair amount of what you're saying. But your method of arguing is infuriating.

You ask "When was the last time YOU had a war on your front doorstep" as the opening basis of your argument. The Management responds with a very tangible and real answer. So what do you do? You dismiss it and go on to another example that better suits your needs.

Pardon my language, but what the fuck? Are you a professional politician? I am one of those people who live in a big, crime-infested city, and frankly, I'm a little bit pissed off at your complete dismissal of a valid point. For those of us who are dealing with six shootings on their block in the past 10 months, how dare you dismiss us because we're not in the "MAJORITY"? Besides, the last time I checked with the U.S. Census Bureau (yesterday, to be exact), a whole lot of Americans lived in cities... some bad cities, some great cities, and some in between.

And what in the world does San Francisco's being named "liveable" have to do with anything? Drive eight hours down the coast and you have a city -- a city that follows the same state's gun laws -- that has dozens of areas that are absolutely unliveable. I don't see your point.

As for vigilante justice, hasn't it crossed your mind that that is what we're dealing with in cities like Baltimore and DC? We're not dealing with law-abiding, gun-owning citizens who are resorting to vigilante justice. We're dealing with criminals who illegally own guns and are resorting to vigilante justice. Frankly, I don't think the guy who shot 3 people across the street from the school by my house really cares much about gun control laws.

I respect the fact that you believe in what you're arguing. But please... when someone makes a valid point, address it. Don't introduce irrelevant facts into the argument. And don't make up a bunch of shit in order to prove your point.

Unless, of course, you are a professional politician. In which case, carry on.


5:33 PM  
Blogger Chowda said...

Chuck on the contrary - the only argument on this site worthy of responding to has been "Otter's." Kid Ugly and you have simply berrated me and just reiterated what Otter said. It's almost like there are a bunch of wannabe lawyers on this site ;)

Now I understand that there may be other points of view, however, in my point of view - I don't need a gun to live my life everyday and I would argue that MOST people feel they don't need a gun to live their lives everyday. Now the problem in Otter's testimony is that he moved to a "warzone." He knew it was bad, but he still wanted to live there. Now would I move to a warzone without a gun? Probably not - but then again, I'm not interested in moving to a warzone, therefore I don't need a gun. Get my drift now?

So, I'll leave you with this - just to add another topic - if we've lived with the current rules on the book for this long (and survived) why would that need to change?

7:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So let me get this straight, we should just abandon the warzones and allow them to just go on unchecked? Wasn't that part of the plot in New Jack City? I see rules as allowing for an instument for change. If we just allowed the rules to stay static, the Prohibition might still be on the books and wealth could be determined by the number of slaves your family owns. Times change, civilization changes and the rules must change as a result.

2:48 PM  
Blogger Chowda said...

Sure, abandon warzones. If I remember correctly, New Jack City self-imploded anyway ;) We need some more Darwinistic thinking on this site.

I do find it interesting that you mention rules must change with civilization. This said from a government that bases law off of a "static" document created over a hundred years ago...

3:05 PM  

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