From: Karee Swift (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Fri Dec 15 2000 - 00:22:14 PST
My god. NOrmally, I flip by the FoRK posts in idle fancy, but this
one just got me. There are certain things I comment on, and certain
ones I take apart, bit by bit. Here ya go Damien.
--- In email@example.com, Damien Morton <Morton@d...> wrote:
> Interesting that you see 'gun-owner' as a whole class of people
> elevation to 'protected minority' status.
> Perhaps the terms 'gun-user' or 'death-dealing-device-owner' would
> light on this connundrum.
> Guns are primarily for killing, and every innovation in firearms
> their history has been to enhance their ability to do some killing.
> handgun is a specialised device for shooting other people. It has
First lovely point to stop. Okay, now granted, my gun use has been
minimal and brief, but ya know, all the times I've taken out a .22 or
9 mm, it hasnt' been with the intention of -killing- anything. Unless
you call old tech scrap animate :) Listen. To say that they have
been primarily tools of death, I'll agree with. Even hunters use the
guns for killing something. But to say they have no other purpose
period(!) is naive and annoying. That puts into the lump a whole
group of my friends, and maybe, fellow forkers who soley go out to
shoot their guns in desire to kill. I don't buy it, and I don't
You can use it as a door stop, and you make a show of hunting with
> one, but its primary function will always be for shooting people. A
> especially any kind of repeating rifle, from bolt action on up, is
> for killing things, probably people. Period.
> What distinguishes 'gun-owners' from other minorities is that other
> minorities tend to be defined by a self-contained cultural,
> religious, or philosophical background. I will conceed that 'gun-
> defined by a philosophy of sorts, but it is the profound impact of
> philosphy on 'non-gun-owners' and 'non-gun-users' and
> minorities and majorities that marks them out for special treatment.
Um again. While its nice and good to say that certain minorities of
individuals within a given group (Ex. blacks, or Christians, or Gun
owners, or Automobile drivers ) have a philosophy that has
a 'profound impact .. on non (fill in the blank) ' that makes the
population wary, to ascribe ALL Of a group to this status is scary.
We have moral panics out of the ALL statements. I kept reading your
entire post with the word 'gun-user' changed to 'automobile driver'.
Maybe I've been living in California too long, but frankly,
Automobiles are life threatening implements by which drivers impose
their philosophy on non-automobile drivers, as well as other
drivers. While i'll grant that the sole purpose of the car is not to
kill, it has a devastating result when handled by certain
individuals. (Certain, not ALL).
> Having owned and used guns myself, I will happily acknowlege the
> and trepidation that accompanies handling a device that empowers
you as much
> as guns do. The same feeling accompanies handling a 300 year old
> sword that has been used to kill. Its definately intriguing and
> bit like a drug, really.
Ditto with a car. I'll continue on.
> Often the argument comes up about the needs of hunters, and thats
> good. The way I see it, hunters should be limited to single shot
> (ideally muskets or bows), and should be required to store their
> police stations when not in use. Im sure there would be howls of
> at such arrangements, but the ability to hunt would be preserved,
> managing the destructive imlements used.
Thats akin to telling an individual, 'ok, you can't go out driving
unless you come in and check with us first. IF we say its ok, then
good. You can't keep your car at your house, nor can you use it when
you want. You have to -check- in each and every time. Oh, yeah.. and
furthermore, its only allocated One tank of gas for every trip. (one
shot). ' Um. Other than the idea of checking in with cops -every-
time I want to go target practice (it is still my legal right ya
know...) the idea of getting permission annoys me. IT takes the
ability of individuals to think for themselves. While you may dig
that, babysitting adults to me just creates in them a sense of
uselessness and increases the stupidity. We don't need increases in
this department folks.
Neither M16s or AK47s or even
> bolt-action rifles are required to maintain cultural woodsman roots.
Agreed. Ergo, why they are outlawed. Just as driving 120 MPH serves
really no efficent purpose in getting to work any faster. We set
laws for those things that are egregious and just plain damaging.
> Other times, the argument comes up about the need to be able to
> governement, militia and all that. Well, I look around me, at the
> the times. I see two things. Firstly, most insurections manage to
> weapons if and when they need them, regardless of permissive gun
> not. Secondly, most insurrections fare pretty damned poorly against
> armed and motivated millitary and political machine, and they tend
> down all kinds of hell on their civilian populations. Not something
> want a minority of 'gun-owners' bringing down around my ears.
Fine, the militia thing, while it was fitting in the early days,
probably doesn't fly as much, though my friend still plans to keep an
AK nearby if a riot heads to his street: )
> So while I will conceed that 'gun-owners' do have a reasoned
> based around cultural woodsman roots, and various forms and uses of
> threat or application of lethal force using tecnologicaly advanced
> is the price that that philosphy exacts on the larger society that
> personally, am not willing to pay. It is why I am opposed to making
> 'gun-ownership' easy and/or prevalent.
Again. Car owners feel the same way about their philosophy (that its
right at least) They have an application of lethal force that they
use against the larger society (Get hit by a SUV at 60. Lethal force
baby... ) and you're not outlawing this. I have a really hard time
with the argument that it is easy /prevalent to get a gun legally.
Just as its not easy to do the whole legal car thing (In California,
sometimes I wonder). You still have to pass tests, register, go
through the appropriate governing bodies, etc. Should it be
impossible? NO. Even though tehre are tons of screaming idiots
driving SUV's down the 405, I don't think the right should be
impinged. Just because they are death-weilding machines of fury that
COULD kill me, I dont' think someone else should have to justify
their actiosn every time they want to go for a drive. Ditto with
guns, or steak knives, or anything else that requires some modicum of
responsibility. Those who do not possess said responsibility
(driving drunk, stabbing co-workers, obtaining illegal weapons)
should be punished. But the moment we start making mandates for
EVERYONE else about lawful use of a weapon, is the day the 2nd is
Sorry. I'm just not supporting this one.
> Without bandying around any stats, I think we might be able to
> for every honorable 'gun-owner' there are probably several people
> rather didnt have guns in our company. Be it criminals, unstable
> insane, intoxicated, desperate or whatever. I think we also might
be able to
> agree that a number of people get killed that wouldnt get killed if
> lived in a society with an intollerance of guns. Certainly the US
> outrageous number of firearms deaths per year, compared to the rest
> western world, and most of them could be termed 'unjust'
YEs, and we also have a high number of fatal car accidents,
stabbings, rapes, and assaults, without guns in the picture. TAking
the gun away while it may curb some, will not do away with crime. We
also have one of the highest levels of media violence anywhere, and
generally desensitized levels of how we deal with death. America is a
fucked up place. But its fucked up for many reasons. i'm tired of
the folks who want to go after one area, isolating that alone as the
reason that the evil exists. IT wouldnt' go away, they'd just change
> The solution is a difficult, because firearms have an outrageously
> half-life compared to most other manufactured goods of such
> Basically a century long eradication program would be required, in
> manufacture, repair, sale, transport etc etc of firearms and
> would be, by default, outlawed for civilians. Buybacks,
> so forth, followed by melt-downs, would used to reduce the
> death dealing devices at an increased rate.
Lets see if they do this for the SUV's too eh?
An unusually irate,
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