Tuesday, December 18, 2012

This Is What a Culture of Guns and Violence Looks Like

The man who is advocating gun culture is Louie Gohmert, a Republican member of the United States Congress representing the 1st Congressional District of Texas. Gun control will never be successful as long as a substantial number of Americans think like this. Gohmert won the last election (Nov. 2012) with 72% of the vote.

Change the culture. Violence is never the answer and more violence will never fix the problem. Change the culture and gun control automatically follows, as in most other countries. It's unlikely that tweaking a few gun laws will make much of a difference as long as everyone thinks it's okay to act like a gun-toting vigilante.



47 comments :

  1. Guns are used to kill people, the important bit? Some nut job pulled the trigger, will less guns make it any better? Nope here in South Africa the criminals have guns and the citizens don't who do you think is winning Larry? Then even if you take all the guns away you'll get the following.... This happened on the same day as Sandy Hook btw.....

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2248054/China-stabbing-22-children-elderly-woman-stabbed-outside-primary-school-Chinese-knifeman.html


    People are evil Larry and because we know what evil is we also know what good is.... so keep your head in the San. So if we take all the guns away, all the knives... Then you'll read of some twenty kids killed with a rock.... People kill people Larry, not guns, not knives, and not rocks....

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    1. Did you hear that "whoosh" sound. It was the sound of a point going over your head.

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    2. All 22 of those Chinese children lived.

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    3. Guns are bad in the wrong hands but what you don't get is that they don't kill people, people kill people with or without guns. There is also a reason why they do that, they have no hope life is meaningless, when you are some random chance accident how could it have any meaning? One last time Larry.... people kill people say it with me.

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    4. Yes Eddie, if its not a gun, its a knife, if its not a knife its a rock and when we outlaw them all it will be with bare hands...... what's your point that trying to kill people is not really as bad as killing them or are you saying a knife is less of a weapon? What are you saying Sean Eddy?

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    5. I'm saying that all those Chinese parents still have their children. Yes, not killing children is better than killing children. Yes, knives and rocks and bare hands are less lethal weapons. Guns make it obscenely easy for an impulsive or irrational act to have fatal consequences.

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    6. Sheesh you are deluded, Its the action of wanting to kill that needs to be fixed not the weapon!

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    7. "Guns don't kill people people kill people" is one of the dumbest mantras I ever heard. Do you really think arming the citizenry reduces violent crime? How's that doing in the States?

      If you get angry, or go off the deep end, and there is a gun to hand and you use it, you will most likely kill. A rock, however? Jesus. Cue the next mass-school killing by someone armed with a fucking rock.

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    8. In my country there is no easy access to firearms. There are plenty of stones lying about, and no, they are not used in mass school killings. Actually, no mass killing has happened in Poland since I was born -- not by a deranged individual anyway (the riot police shooting at protesters in 1970 and 1981 was a different matter). The homicide rate is similar to that in France (ca 1.1 per 100,000). I would hardly feel safer if I owned a gun.

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    9. To me it is quite clear that it is not only the a persons intention to kill that kills it is the weaponry at his disposal that desides how succesfull he is. Things had gone a lot worse in the Chinese incident if the crazy person had an assult rifle!

      Just for a second try to play with the thought that Adam Lanza had some sort of nuclear bomb at his hands ....

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  2. As things stand now, there is some merit to what Gohmert says. Even if gun ownership was outlawed, guns will always be available like booze was available during the Prohibition period. Have a look at this story:

    http://www.kgw.com/news/Clackamas-man-armed-confronts-mall-shooter-183593571.html

    Personally if I were to face a deranged gunman in a mall I would rather want to be able to defend myself then to run away and be shot in the back!


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    1. You are part of the problem. You will never be part of the solution.

      You need to stop thinking that meeting violence with more violence will ever solve the problem. You need to stop being proud of the fact that you're willing to carry a gun and use it to kill someone. That's exactly the kind of thinking that produces the gunman in the mall in the first place.

      If I knew that you were carrying a gun in a mall and were willing to use it whenever you feel threatened, I would want to shop somewhere else. You represent more of a threat to me than a potential mass murderer.

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    2. Pépé, there's a significant difference between the long-term planning mass murderer, who probably has some severe mental health issue, and the more general crime-of-passion-in-the-moment kind of guy.

      Simply owning and carrying around a gun can make the difference between a guy snapping and being thrown to jail for assault, or snapping and shooting several people. In a culture where most people have easy access to guns, you'll get more deaths due to the "suddenly snaps in a rage"-guy carrying a weapon intentionally designed to make it easy to kill other human beings from a distance, pretty much at "the click of a button".

      There's no good excuse to have everyone carrying around guns. Yes, organised crimiminals like gangs and mafia will be able to get guns outside the normal routes, and so will the psycho's who plan to murder people over the long term if they are sufficiently persistent. But you'll STILL get a substantial reduction in murders due to gun-related violence, in a culture where people don't all own guns.
      There really is no way around this logic, and i't supported by the statistics.

      The John-Wayne picture of ordinary citizens never committing gun-violence due to crimes of passion, but being somehow the "guardians" of the general population against organised criminals and psychos is simply not an accurate reflection of reality. It doesn't happen.

      In countries and states where more people have easy access to and own guns, you get more deaths due to gun-related violence. Time to face the facts and simple logic of culture, society and human nature. We don't need the populace to carry around weapons designed for killing other human beings. The only thing you get, is more dead people.

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    3. I started my comment with "As things stand now" because mass murders are still occuring, despite gun control.

      Richard Henry Bain, who shot two men and killed one when elected PM Marois was giving her acceptance speech, had all his weapons duly registered. If his assault rifle had not malfunctioned God only knows how many more he would have killed. Canada has very strict gun control laws but that has not prevented the École Polytechnique, Dawson or Metropolis shootings. Dr. Fabrikant had a license for the gun he used to kill four and wound another in the Concordia University massacre.

      Larry, if you feel more threaten by a gun carrying sane person then by a deranged mass murderer you must be scared as hell when you see a police officer.

      Maybe you don't mind being a chair à canon but I do!

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    4. Some talk about gun-free zones, where mass murderer go because they know they won't have any opposition. Should all gun-free zones, schools, malls, restaurants, etc.. have arm guards to protect the public?

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    5. Pépé, you're simply engaging in ad-hoc reasoning. There are less murders due to gun-related violence in countries and states with stricter gun control, whether they are spur of the moment gun-violence of planned mass-murders by lifetime psychos.

      If you make it harder to get to a gun, you make it less likely that a person who will at some point get into a state of mind where they intend to harm or kill, will own a gun. It's elementary logic and it's manifestly reflected in the statistics.

      You're making up silly excuses and ad-hoc scenarios in order to try to rethorically circumvent what is an empirical fact. It really is the case that more guns = more deaths.

      John Wayne doesn't exist, and he doesn't patrol your local mall. Deal with the facts.

      Clearly, the goal must be to reduce the number of deaths? Given that the statistics unambigously tell us that you get less deaths with fewer guns, the logical conclusion is to reduce the number of guns in the population.

      Logic 101. Empirical facts from the real world > rethoric and hypotheticals.

      There's more to gun-control than requiring registration. How about not having a gun-infested culture with gun-shops in every town and city to begin with?

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    6. Rumraket, you are asking the wrong question. The question isn't "will gun-related violence be reduced if guns are eliminated". Yes that's logical, but its almost tautologial, and therefore useless. The question is "will violence, per se, be reduced if guns are eliminated?", and the data does NOT support that claim. What the data shows is that gun violence, like pretty much all violence, is mostly isolated among one demographic group: low income, low education, young males. Taking guns out of their hands wil reduce violence. Taking guns away from well-off, elderly women? Not so much.

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    7. Your arguments seem to me rather weak.

      First of all, if my argument is logical, and so obviously true it's "almost" tautological, then surely it isn't useless?

      As I said, the ultimatel goal is to reduce deaths, I hope you agree? Then if strict gun control and a much less gun-glorifying culture is a strong step in that direction, why not take it?

      Another point about violence in general, I made no insinuations that reductions in gunviolence automatically entails a reduction in total amount, or all kinds of violence, and I fundamentally disagree that that is the question we should ask. ("will violence, per se, be reduced if guns are eliminated?")

      Though, it seems entirely plausible to me that, if you can reduce gunviolence, that is itself a step towards reducing total violence. That's not to say it's a one-step fix-all solution, I have no illusions with regards to whether there's some magic single solution. There's not, so let's just get that out of the way and stop pursuing that strawman.

      Instead of these endless theoretical discussions which ultimately turn out to be rethorical digressions, let's start working to reduce gunviolence by reducing the number of guns, and stop glorifying gun-ownership and gun-culture.

      And the thing about well-off, elderly women? I don't see any merit in your point.
      Within any arbitrary demographic you will find two extremes at each end, the most and least likely to commit gunviolence among gunowners. That's not a good excuse to reduce gunviolence, and seemt to imply we should start discriminating on the basis of income, education and sex? What's next, ethnicity? How about we be fair and just try to reduce the number of guns across the board and in the process manage to reduce GUN-violence?

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    8. Pépé: Personally if I were to face a deranged gunman in a mall I would rather want to be able to defend myself then to run away and be shot in the back!

      I wouldn't like to be involved in that hypothetical mall shootout between a deranged gunman and a frantic Pépé.

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    9. ok there is nothing funny about any of this but somehow I had to laugh.

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  3. "Change the culture" is not easy to accomplish. It is all the more difficult when there are groups trying to change it back to what they think was the culture of 2000 years ago.

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    1. Nobody said it would be easy but it must be possible since there are modern societies where the level of violence is much lower than it is in the United States.

      The murder rate in Texas is 4.4 per 100,000. The rate in the United Kingdom is 1.2. In France it's 1.1 and in Germany it's 0.8. The rate in Canada is 1.6 homicides per 100,000 citizens.

      The numbers look even worse if you only count murders by guns.

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    2. Larry why don't you rather talk about stuff you know something about?

      South Africa is a supposed gun free society.... look at our murder rate despite the governments efforts in restricting gun ownership!

      http://www.sacc-ct.org.za/statistics.html

      How many people in Canada own a firearm? The 3rd most in gun ownership in the western world.

      http://stason.org/TULARC/society/guns-canadian/26-How-many-people-in-Canada-legally-own-firearms.html#.UNCYVyQaKUk

      So what does this mean? When your civilian population is armed to the teeth no criminal is going to go fuck around with them because he knows he's going to be toast!

      But what about Switzerland?

      The population is armed to the teeth and they have a lower murder rate than even Canada!

      http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-switzerland.htm

      Ignorance is bliss when you're safe and know fuck all about being defenceless and a target for every would be criminal out there that don't give a shit about gun laws!

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    3. Dear person who supports guns but is too cowardly to post comments under her real name (i.e. Anonymous).

      I'm going to say this one more time in simple words that even you might be able to understand.

      The solution to the problem of gun violence lies in changing the culture from one that glorifies vigilantes to one that abhors violence of all kinds.

      If you live in a non-violent society then everyone could own a gun and you still wouldn't have high murder rates. If you live in a society that condones, and even admires, gun violence, then banning guns will not work.

      Got it? I don't think I can make it any clearer.

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    4. Larry.... Well geez I thought you would have figured it out.... stop telling people that they are purposeless accidents that have no meaning! (I can understand why you would want guns to go away after telling people that) you see in my country a few white guys decided to tell a few black guys that that they were not quite as evolved and where in fact lower species of humans, who inspired them with this tripe? Does the name Charles Darwin perhaps ring a bell Larry? You did read Descent of man right? Or On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life. Did you read both Larry? Are you going to tell me outright that Charles Darwin was in fact not a racist? How about those Negro ears that looks like a Gorilla’s?
      Of course you'll just say I'm lying or I'm stupid or both! In my country where human beings were degraded to lower life forms actually speak volumes about the influence Charles Darwin had on the mind of the men that thought themselves better than others. Much like atheists do these days thinking they hold some intellectual position and everybody else is just stupid!
      People are killing each other because they have no hope and telling them every day that they are not worth anything will not make the problem go away! You are right there should be a culture change, stop telling people they don’t actually mean jack or shit and take some time to tell them how wonderful they are, how complex they are and how unique each one is!

      Oh and if you want me to post on my own name remove the option to post anonymously, you can't enable it and then complain about it when people do!

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    5. Our gun culture is merely an outgrowth of our violence culture: football, UFC, Nascar...Americans love violence. I'm not sure how that can be changed, not in my lifetime anyway.

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    6. I could of course go on a rant and tell you how the people that have been treated like animals might feel, but at the end of the day its your choice to follow a religion created by a racist theologian that new diddly squat about biology.

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    7. you can't enable it and then complain about it when people do

      Just as in much of the rest of life, you have the freedom to act like a horse's patoot here. Doing so and then blaming it on someone else seems rather weak to me. Aren't you in favor of people taking responsibility for their own actions? Or does it foster irresponsible behavior and immorality to be able to do anything at all, then say the magic words and be Saved?

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  4. Here is a more up to date report on the problems in South Africa!

    www.thepresidency.gov.za/docs/reports/15year.../jcps/firearms.pdf

    I wish I lived in Canada so I could at least have the opportunity to defend myself, South African civilians are sitting ducks!

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  5. This "gun culture" may be a manifestation of a broader ideology of domination that is particularly influential among American Republicans. They think that the solution to crime in to outgun criminals; their solution to crime is also to lock up anyone who steps out of line (e.g. drug laws); their solution to war is global mililtary deployment and pre-emptive war.

    I would love for that ideology to die. Maybe if it died, gun control/prohibition would be seen as a trivial administrative issue. However, the reduction of violence by civilians would only be a minor benefit -- the main benefit would be from the reduction of state violence.

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  6. Why do people want to kill people? Isn't that the question? Why does anyone think that removing the tools will remove the motivation? Why do so many mass murders occur in "gun-free" zones? I think we should make murder, rape, lying, stealing, and breaking others' property illegal. That will solve all those problems if we just make them illegal. Because criminals follow laws.
    --Signed Anonymous because I came to this blog to read about something aside from gun control, but I'm not coming back. Ridiculous.

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  7. IMO, the entire gun issue is overblown by emotions on both sides. Gun homicides account for about 11,000 homicides a year in the US, or roughly one person out of 30,000, and sorry, but even if we magically eliminated guns that figure would not crash to zero. Hardly an epidemic worthy of so much of our time when there are so many bigger social and political fish to fry.

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    1. That's about 68% of all homicides where a weapon of any type, including fists and feet, was reported to have been used. A gun is a really good quick way to turn a fight or beating into a murder. That's why people use them for that purpose (duh). It would be very nice if people had a more difficult time killing each other, don't you think?

      I'd love to hear some good ideas about just *how* to go about changing the culture. There, it seems to me, is the rub.

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    2. @ScienceAvenger: Just out of curiosity, how many people's lives *would* you consider to be a problem worth spending time on? Do you have a specific number in mind?

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    3. In 2011 there were 32,367 motor vehicle deaths in the US.

      Annually there are 443,000 smoking deaths.

      Annually there are 3,533 drownings of which 20% are children.

      From a statistical point of view where do you think we should be spending our time and money to reduce the number of deaths ?

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    4. Leaving statistics aside, we should spend time and money (and we have plenty of each) to reduce all preventable deaths, including more than 100,000 annual deaths in US alone caused by hospital associated infections.

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    5. reduce all preventable deaths, including more than 100,000 annual deaths in US alone caused by hospital associated infections

      Of them, 30,000 deaths are from sepsis. The most common cause of medically introduced sepsis are those needle-less injection ports that collect bugs before they are flushed into your veins. And get that: The main purpose and justification of the everything needle-less in today's hospital is to prevent medical personnel injuries!

      So, 30,000 people die every year because few incompetent nurses might prick themselves with needles. "We have the best medical care in the world".


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    6. And (it would appear) the antibiotic resistance of a number of the so-called 'superbugs' derives directly from routine use of antibiotic supplements in animal rearing. The US lags behind much of the rest of the world in restricting or abandoning this practice.

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  8. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2248054/China-stabbing-22-children-elderly-woman-stabbed-outside-primary-school-Chinese-knifeman.html

    This is what a gun-free culture looks like.

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    1. Hey Sean Eddie already said that was not so bad don't be obtuse now!

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  9. "... Taking guns out of their hands will reduce violence. Taking guns away from well-off, elderly women? Not so much."

    Another case of open-mouth-insert-foot. Where do you think the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooter got the guns he used?

    I've led a very sheltered life. I only knew two people from the small rural town in northern New York State where I grew up who were killed by guns. One by accident, the other by an enraged, jilted teenaged boyfriend. I've never known anyone who was killed by an instrument of violence other than a gun. I've had rifles and shotguns in my hands as a reckless teenager and done reckless things with them. Thinking back about those things I wish I had never had the guns in my hands.

    The other part about the Sandy Hook tragedy that we need better solutions to is the treatment of the mentally ill.

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    1. Yeah like testing in the womb, and when they look like they could be mental rip em out!!!! You can never be to careful now can you?

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    2. Weren't you leaving and never coming back? Do carry on.

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  10. Anonymous said:
    Larry.... Well geez I thought you would have figured it out.... stop telling people that they are purposeless accidents that have no meaning!

    If anyone ever deserved to be banished from decent company it would be this fellow on the grounds of interminable stupidity and grievous ignorance.

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  11. Jebus Jud appealing to character here? Let me make it clear to you Larry and every one else, I do not support guns matter of fact I hate them as much as you do but the guns are not the problem, people are the problem and no matter what you do unless society starts taking care of ALL people and include all people into society as equally respected citizens the issue will remain. What's the bet that just like in South Africa the gun violence in the States is also mostly by black people? Another group that was treated as less equal for how many years? The dehumanizing to men was done by men change that and you change the world not by removing guns!

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  12. "Change the culture. Violence is never the answer and more violence will never fix the problem." - Amen.

    Violence is not at all restricted to gun use. See etymology:

    violation (n.) early 15c., from L. violationem (nom. violatio) "an injury, irreverence," from pp. stem of violare "to violate, treat with violence, outrage, dishonor"...

    Irreverence or dishonor are also violent - a change of culture would be welcome, if possible.

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  13. Nope here in South Africa the criminals have guns and the citizens don't who do you think is winning Larry? Then even if you take all the guns away you'll get the following...shootingtargets7

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