Gun Control and Gun Violence

Repository for links to information about gun control and gun violence.

Edit (2/19/2018)

To be read later:

Op-ed from Bloomberg News Nothing in the Constitution Prevents Sensible Gun Rules

Edit (2/21/2018)

This is really good thread on the loopholes that exist in gun laws.

This is also really good as well:

Edit (2/22/2018)

The following tweet is partly speculative, but the speculation seems reasonable in my opinion.

From The Atlantic, What I Saw Treating the Victims from Parkland Should Change the Debate on Guns. The author is a radiologist who shares the difference between wounds from an AR-15 on other guns. The difference is dramatic and horrific. One of the big takeaways: AR-15 wounds are way more lethal that wounds from handguns–you’re chances of survival are far less with the former, which seems like a good reason to ban or highly regulate the weapon.

Edit (2/27/2018)

This article, if accurate, provides plausible reasons why the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students have been so articulate and even savvy when speaking to the media. The tragedy of the shooting aside, I’d be incredibly proud if I were Mr. Foster.

Edit (2/28/2018)

This seems crazy, and I think it’s a big deal especially after reading the following article:

One takeaway: Florida will be the first to adopt a pro-gun law, and other states will follow.

Edit

I didn’t read the Atlantic article, but this is an interesting analysis.

3/7/2018

41 thoughts on “Gun Control and Gun Violence

    1. Just seeing this now for some reason. I’m sorry, but this is not it almost happening again. This is it happening again.

      1. You mean, that specific incident, or more generally what’s been happening since? Or do you mean, the boy shooting himself should count as “happening again,” (even if it may not have involved other students)? I would agree that the suicide, by itself, is tragic; we should be disturbed, and try to prevent it just as much as mass shootings.

      2. The boy shooting himself is a gun in the hands of a student on school grounds resulting in the death of a child. This it it happening again.

  1. It is insane, right? Here’s how I make sense of this: These guys are getting a lot of money from the gun lobby. It’s like scientists paid by the tobacco industry who said human beings had a greater chance of getting cancer from parakeets than smoking cigarettes. (I could be remembering this wrong, but I’m pretty sure it was some type of bird.)

    1. The original Twitter message was taken down, so those links don’t work. I looked through the guy’s stream to see he’d reposted.

        1. I haven’t read the article yet, but will try to later. Did you see the news below?

  2. Thoughts:

    Possibility this act was motivated by racism, but can’t say for sure at this point.
    If the story is accurate, this man never should have had access to guns.

  3. Good thread

  4. As a country, we’re failing our kids.

    Edit

    Man, this wrecked me.

    Edit

  5. All the other industrialized countries seem to have the answers. We should try them out.

    In my view, he’s trying to equate solutions with partisanship. By saying this, he’s the one making this a partisan issue.

    edit

  6. This editorial in Politico is the most nuanced expression of something I’ve been trying to say for decades about gun control. The last two paragraphs are the key, I think. One side needs to let go of something it doesn’t honestly want to protect anyway; the other has to bring some kind of assurance that there is no slippery slope. That’s a tough sell, based on what’s happened with smoking so quickly in just the last twenty years.

    https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/08/04/mass-shooting-gun-culture-227502

    1. Maybe I’m misreading the piece, but the underlying premise seems to be that winning over gun owners–not overcoming the influence of the NRA and gun manufacturers–is the biggest challenge for gun-control advocates. I’m skeptical of this premise. For example, if NRA/gun lobby didn’t exist or was very weak, would we would have already have more laws advocated by gun control advocates? If gun owners are the biggest obstacle, then the answer would be no. I would be surprised if this was accurate.

      My sense is that if the NRA didn’t exist or have the influence that they did, the laws would pass, and the vast majority of gun owners wouldn’t be calling for revolution. Additionally, if gun violence, particularly these mass shooting at schools and churches, decreased dramatically, I suspect those advocates calling for even more gun control at this point would shrink significantly. Then again, I’m not sure about this.

      But I do know that what’s pushing me towards political activism on this issue is the realization that something like school shootings are becoming normal. That I shouldn’t be completely surprised if I such a thing happens at my child’s school. I just cut through an elementary school the other day. No one stopped me. I walked by classrooms. It would be super easy for someone with an automatic weapon to kill a lot of kids. That’s insane. I think if mass shootings became really, really rare, I suspect my political interest in this would be lessened significantly (which isn’t necessarily a good thing, but I’m just being candid).

    2. I don’t think you’re exactly misreading this, but you are missing the point, and I deleted two paragraphs I wrote before I posted the link because I didn’t want to assume you wouldn’t get why I was sharing it, or why the writer wrote the piece.

      I asked Reid, Grace, and Penny a couple of years ago if any of them had fired a gun, and none of them had. You may not think this is relevant to the conversation (after all, none of you have had cocaine either, I’m assuming, and you know it’s bad for you), but it is, because as you know, most average American gun-owners are in favor of some kind of control on these weapons of war, but they’re worried about Democratic presidential candidates because of that slippery slope.

      I grew up thinking of gun ownership as totally normal, even though I’d only seen guns in the home of one person I knew (my scoutmaster); and although I will probably never own a gun, the thought of people I know owning them doesn’t bother me in the least. So while I wouldn’t exactly call these my people, I feel I understand them in a way my anti-gun friends don’t, and these friends don’t seem interested in understanding them.

      You can’t blame divisiveness on the NRA. You can blame a lot of things on them, but the suspicion and stress gun-owning America feels about the slippery slope is important, possibly critically important, and it would help if we tried to get it.

    3. You can’t blame divisiveness on the NRA. You can blame a lot of things on them, but the suspicion and stress gun-owning America feels about the slippery slope is important, …

      You don’t think the NRA–and the politicians that they influence–have a significant impact on this suspicion and stress? It sounds like you think if the NRA didn’t exist or wasn’t very influential, the degree to which gun owners would worry about this slippery slope would be just as high. Moreover, it seems like you think this anxiety would translate to a political force that is powerful enough to block not only gun control laws, but federal money to study effects guns have on public safety.

      If this is accurate, I’d like to hear why you think the NRA’s influence on the anxiety gun owners have about a slippery slope isn’t as significant as gun control advocates understanding gun owners.

      1. I’m not underestimating the power or influence of the NRA, but it seems clear you don’t want to have a conversation about the culture clash, and that’s fine. I get the same kind of not-wanting-to-hear-it from my very liberal friends who are convinced that Trump supporters are racists, even though I know many who aren’t. Maybe another day?

    4. I’m not underestimating the power or influence of the NRA, but it seems clear you don’t want to have a conversation about the culture clash, and that’s fine.

      I’m open to having the discussion on the culture clash, but I want to know why NRA isn’t the bigger factor. Do you not want to comment on that?

      And if you don’t, how about going into what you specifically think gun advocates don’t understand and appreciate; and how understanding those things would lead to a breakthrough on gun control legislation.

      1. I don’t think there’s anything left to say about the influence of the NRA. I’m as frustrated and furious as you are, but it’s all pretty much right out there.

        I also don’t think gun advocates don’t understand or don’t appreciate something about gun-control advocates, so I think you’re mishearing me again. The status quo is on their side. If we want to change the status quo, the burden is on us to understand and appreciate those who lean in favor of preserving it. A lot of it is in that Politico piece.

        A lot also has to do with a complete disconnect between the understanding and experience of gun ownership and what we saw on the news Sunday. People who lump them together aren’t getting it, and it’s not fair, because it sounds like most gun owners are making the attempt, in favor of some kind of increased regulation. Gun-control advocates aren’t trying to meet them somewhere on their own turf to try and have the conversation, to understand why it’s so difficult to simply acquiesce. That’s not the way things change in this country, usually.

    5. I don’t think there’s anything left to say about the influence of the NRA. I’m as frustrated and furious as you are, but it’s all pretty much right out there.

      A lot also has to do with a complete disconnect between the understanding and experience of gun ownership and what we saw on the news Sunday.

      I didn’t watch a lot of news on Sunday–what are you thinking of specifically?

      People who lump them together aren’t getting it, and it’s not fair, because it sounds like most gun owners are making the attempt, in favor of some kind of increased regulation.

      Do you know some of the specific types of regulation gun owners are in favor of?

      Gun-control advocates aren’t trying to meet them somewhere on their own turf to try and have the conversation, to understand why it’s so difficult to simply acquiesce.

      I’m not sure how true this is, but I’m sure some of this is going on. In your mind, what would “meeting them on their own turf look like.”

      On side note, when I think of this problem I don’t really think gun owners are the main problem; I don’t really seem them in a negative light. Almost all my attention is on the NRA, gun lobby, and the politicians they control–I think of people like Marion Hammer.

      1. I didn’t watch a lot of news on Sunday–what are you thinking of specifically?

        22 people shot and killed in El Paso. 9 shot and killed in Dayton.

        Do you know some of the specific types of regulation gun owners are in favor of?

        Better background checks for sure. A minority of Republicans in favor of assault weapons bans.

        I’m not sure how true this is, but I’m sure some of this is going on. In your mind, what would “meeting them on their own turf look like.”

        Some kind of effort to understand gun culture, especially the everyday sort of culture as it exists in places in this country where gun ownership is just a part of normal life. And something that would go a long way: experience firing a rifle in controlled, responsible circumstances.

        On side note, when I think of this problem I don’t really think gun owners are the main problem; I don’t really seem them in a negative light. Almost all my attention is on the NRA, gun lobby, and the politicians they control

        Yep. That’s why I ventured into this topic I normally stay out of. I’m trying to say you (and others) might consider it, and consider what this writer is suggesting.

    6. 22 people shot and killed in El Paso. 9 shot and killed in Dayton.

      I meant, what was specifically problematic about the coverage with regard to not connecting properly with gun owners.

      Better background checks for sure. A minority of Republicans in favor of assault weapons bans.

      OK. And your sense is that gun control advocates fail to acknowledge and appreciate gun owners for this? For what it’s worth, my sense is that gun control advocates direct most of their ire at the NRA and the politicians whom they control. That’s my impression from twitter, anyway.

      Some kind of effort to understand gun culture, especially the everyday sort of culture as it exists in places in this country where gun ownership is just a part of normal life. And something that would go a long way: experience firing a rifle in controlled, responsible circumstances.

      And what do you think this would specifically change? For example, do you think this would help gun control advocates communicate more effectively with gun owners?

      Yep. That’s why I ventured into this topic I normally stay out of. I’m trying to say you (and others) might consider it, and consider what this writer is suggesting.

      OK, but for what it’s worth, I think this would be a lot more persuasive if you could show that the lack of empathy and understanding is a bigger obstacle to passing gun regulations than the influence of the NRA (which is why I started by asking questions about that). That is, if you believe this is the case.

      1. I said

        A lot also has to do with a complete disconnect between the understanding and experience of gun ownership and what we saw on the news Sunday.

        I’m not talking about coverage. I’m talking about a disconnect between normal people who own guns and 22 people dead in El Paso and 9 dead in Dayton. For people who own guns, there’s no connection. And people who are anti-guns don’t seem to understand this, which again is the point of my trying to wade into these waters.

        OK. And your sense is that gun control advocates fail to acknowledge and appreciate gun owners for this? For what it’s worth, my sense is that gun control advocates direct most of their ire at the NRA and the politicians whom they control. That’s my impression from twitter, anyway.

        No. I honestly don’t care about acknowledgement. Nobody gets credit for believing in something or not believing in something. I’m not sure why you asked the question but I answered it.

        Yes, I understand that gun-control advocates are directing their ire at the NRA. Can we forget the NRA in this conversation for a moment? I’m talking about anti-gun people and pro-gun people trying to understand each other better so we can try to agree on reasonable paths to fewer days like Saturday. Listen: I understand that there’s a sense of urgency, and when things are urgent, people just want whatever will fix the problem. And maybe we can fix the problem by railroading through some kind of gun control, or we can build up anti-NRA sentiment enough that being supported by the NRA is no longer some kind of asset. But do we care about the people who care about guns, our friends and neighbors, or do we want to disregard them entirely in these actions and cause some kind of backlash, either at the polls or just in the way we relate to each other?

        And what do you think this would specifically change? For example, do you think this would help gun control advocates communicate more effectively with gun owners?

        Yes. Some kind of mutual understanding would be a huge step, so that one side isn’t saying “You guys don’t care about children’s lives” while the other side says “You guys want to take away something that’s been part of my community’s life for centuries when nobody in my community has anything to do with what happened Saturday.”

        OK, but for what it’s worth, I think this would be a lot more persuasive if you could show that the lack of empathy and understanding is a bigger obstacle to passing gun regulations than the influence of the NRA (which is why I started by asking questions about that). That is, if you believe this is the case.

        Noted. I can’t, since that’s not my position, so I guess we don’t have much to talk about.

    7. I was going to respond to several points, but I’m going to focus on the most important:

      And maybe we can fix the problem by railroading through some kind of gun control, or we can build up anti-NRA sentiment enough that being supported by the NRA is no longer some kind of asset. But do we care about the people who care about guns, our friends and neighbors, or do we want to disregard them entirely in these actions and cause some kind of backlash, either at the polls or just in the way we relate to each other?

      “Railroading?” How would passing legislation for improving better background checks be “railroading?” I disagree with this narrative that the majority of gun control advocates want to ram through legislation and that they don’t have any regard for gun owners’ concerns. I’m sure what you say applies to at least some gun control advocates, but you seem to think that the majority are this way–and this is what’s preventing meaningful gun regulation. Maybe I’m misreading you, but if not, I really disagree with this narrative.

      1. I’m not saying this at all. I’m saying maybe it can be fixed this way (it couldn’t be railroaded anyway, with the makeup of the sitting Congress). I’m saying we could ride the wave of sentiment and try to pass the laws in an emotional response, not unlike we did when we went to war in Iraq. I’m saying maybe this isn’t the best way — that the best way involves trying to understand each other. Because I don’t think either side is doing much to understand the other. Each side assumes it does, but it doesn’t, as the writer of this piece lays out.

    8. I’m saying we could ride the wave of sentiment and try to pass the laws in an emotional response, not unlike we did when we went to war in Iraq. I’m saying maybe this isn’t the best way —

      My sense is that many of the gun control laws that have failed to pass are not radical or some product of mere sentiment and emotion. Maybe you’re not saying that, but it sounds that way, and if you are, I really disagree with this characterization. I don’t really get the Iraq War analogy, either.

      …that the best way involves trying to understand each other. Because I don’t think either side is doing much to understand the other. Each side assumes it does, but it doesn’t, as the writer of this piece lays out.

      The better–or best way–in my opinion is to do what it takes to get reasonable gun control regulation passed into law. If gun owners and gun control advocates understand is the key to doing this, then I’m all for that that.

      1. My sense is that many of the gun control laws that have failed to pass are not radical or some product of mere sentiment and emotion. Maybe you’re not saying that, but it sounds that way, and if you are, I really disagree with this characterization. I don’t really get the Iraq War analogy, either.

        They’re not radical to you, Reid. I feel you’re not trying to see it from the perspective of people who worry that they are a first step toward ending an important part of their everyday lives. What difference does it make to you, since you have never cared about guns?

        I don’t know if you remember this, but the towers went down, and the president could pretty much get away with anything he wanted and frame it as a response to those events. Congress voted overwhelmingly in favor of going to Iraq. The media didn’t question it because it would have seemed unpatriotic. Some people we both admire in most situations didn’t want to risk speaking up, and we got into one of the dumbest wars ever (and from a pacifist like me, that’s saying something). The mass shootings we’ve seen cannot help but be emotional for us. We could (were it not for the NRA) leverage the emotion and make changes to our laws without considering long-term effects and other collateral consequences. I seldom hear anyone talking about those. I understand you don’t care, as you state in your next paragraph, so okay. I do care.

        The better–or best way–in my opinion is to do what it takes to get reasonable gun control regulation passed into law. If gun owners and gun control advocates understand is the key to doing this, then I’m all for that that.

        You’ve spoken in agreement with delaying slavery’s practical end to several years after its official end. To protect the economy. Why the gun cause demands more expedience than the slavery cause baffles me.

        1. Anyway, I think this conversation confirms the premise, which is that each side doesn’t really want to care about the other’s perspective. You disagree with the conclusion, but I think it has enormous merit, based on what I know (and I’m not saying it’s a lot) about people who own guns.

    9. They’re not radical to you, Reid. I feel you’re not trying to see it from the perspective of people who worry that they are a first step toward ending an important part of their everyday lives.

      Guns make a difference to gun owners and yet you said most support better background checks. So how is this radical?

      I don’t know if you remember this, but the towers went down, and the president could pretty much get away with anything he wanted and frame it as a response to those events.

      How is that analogous to the situation with gun control legislation? A person has shot up kids at schools multiple times already. We’ve had shootings at churches, stores, workplaces–I don’t know where else. That’s like several 9-11 events, and no meaningful steps have been taken.

      We could (were it not for the NRA) leverage the emotion and make changes to our laws without considering long-term effects and other collateral consequences.

      You mention the NRA as if it’s a small detail. Yeah, we could leverage the emotion if not for the NRA, but the NRA exists, and we’ve had many years, many shootings, with very little progress.

      What are the collateral consequences? Look at other nations or even a state like Hawai’i, which seems to have stricter gun laws. What drawbacks do you see?

      You’ve spoken in agreement with delaying slavery’s practical end to several years after its official end. To protect the economy. Why the gun cause demands more expedience than the slavery cause baffles me.

      Do you think passing gun control legislation–like improving background checks–poses an existential threat to the nation?

      1. Guns make a difference to gun owners and yet you said most support better background checks. So how is this radical?

        It’s radical if it leads to stricter and stricter gun control.

        How is that analogous to the situation with gun control legislation?

        Okay. The analogy doesn’t work for you.

        You mention the NRA as if it’s a small detail. Yeah, we could leverage the emotion if not for the NRA, but the NRA exists, and we’ve had many years, many shootings, with very little progress.

        What are the collateral consequences? Look at other nations or even a state like Hawai’i, which seems to have stricter gun laws. What drawbacks do you see?

        I see the loss of a big part of people’s culture. Maybe it’s time. Sometimes things have to be yanked into place, as with same-sex marriage and recreational marijuana, which have seen huge change in ridiculously short amounts of time. I don’t ache for the loss of hetero-only marriage. Perhaps we shouldn’t ache for the loss of guns. I’m suggesting it’s a bigger deal than you think it is.

        Do you think passing gun control legislation–like improving background checks–poses an existential threat to the nation?

        To enough of the nation that I think it’s worth trying to sympathize. Maybe I’m wrong.

        You didn’t point out the horrible flaw in my reasoning with this example, which I noticed as soon as I posted it. I’m accusing you of an inconsistency (ending slavery vs. controlling guns) while being equally inconsistent in the opposite direction. I can’t resolve that. It’s bugged me all morning.

      2. It’s radical if it leads to stricter and stricter gun control.

        So any legislation that regulates guns–no matter how conservative and no matter if the majority of gun owners support the legislation is radical–because of the possibility that it can lead to stricter gun laws?

        Okay. The analogy doesn’t work for you.

        You don’t this my point is valid?

        I see the loss of a big part of people’s culture.

        Are you basing this on evidence from states that have stricter gun laws? If so, this would make your argument more compelling.

        My understanding is that assault weapons were banned under Bill Clinton, was there evidence that a big part of people’s culture was lost?

        Perhaps we shouldn’t ache for the loss of guns. I’m suggesting it’s a bigger deal than you think it is.

        I admit I don’t fully understand the impact and importance guns have for certain people, but I’m also not advocating for the confiscation of all guns. To me, the argument you’re giving is the propaganda pushed by the NRA, and I don’t really the majority of gun control advocates are calling for this.

        To enough of the nation that I think it’s worth trying to sympathize. Maybe I’m wrong.

        1. I totally agree that it’s worth sympathizing with gun owners–that is, I’m not saying gun control advocates shouldn’t waste their time on this. But I’m not as invested in this as you seem to be because I’m more focused on the influence of the NRA and the gun industry.

        2. For what it’s worth, I think if they were not a political force, I think we’d not only have meaningful improvements to gun control, but gun owners and their culture wouldn’t be significantly harmed in the process–unless harm means any form of gun control legislation, no matter how small. My point: I personally don’t think the type of gun control legislation–better background checks, or banning assault weapons–is an existential threat to gun owners and their culture.

        3. You know this, but it’s worth pointing out that there’s a big difference between a threat to the entire nation and a threat to a sub-culture. And again, I disagree that something like background checks would pose an existential threat to their subculture.

        You didn’t point out the horrible flaw in my reasoning with this example, which I noticed as soon as I posted it. I’m accusing you of an inconsistency (ending slavery vs. controlling guns) while being equally inconsistent in the opposite direction. I can’t resolve that. It’s bugged me all morning.

        I still don’t see it. What do you mean by inconsistent in the “opposite direction?”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *