submitted 1 month ago by bi_tux to c/guns

I hope this isn't out of context, also I don't want to "own the libs" or something here, I'm actually interested.

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[-] [email protected] 68 points 1 month ago

Besides shootings... ? I think it's shootings.

[-] Lemming421 10 points 1 month ago

Right? That’s like saying “why are people against this man going free? (Besides the murders)”

If you think a few lines of text written by some rich white guys a couple of hundred years ago is more important than the scores of dead children, not to mention everyone else killed by guns, both homicide and suicide, then I think there’s something deeply wrong with you.

[-] [email protected] 25 points 1 month ago

Statistics generally show that people with guns in their house are much more likely to be fatally shot. Suicide is a big factor, as are domestic disputes. It seems that generally, there are points in many people's lives of extreme emotional anguish or rage, and if they have access to a firearm at that point they will use it, with deadly consequences. On the other side of the equation, successfully preventing harm with a firearm is comparatively more rare. In other words, owning guns causes more harm than it prevents.

At a societal level the same picture more or less bears out: the more guns available in a community, the higher the incidence rates of gun violence. This is true independent of crime levels, income, or demographics.

It therefore seems desirable to attempt to reduce the number of guns in private ownership. For the United States, that's quite a complicated task, and I don't see any realistic path to a gun-free society. Especially not with ~50% of the country opposed to such a goal. Probably the first step would have to be to increase public support for gun control, otherwise all efforts are futile.

[-] [email protected] 6 points 1 month ago

Fwiw, some of the lowest crime areas in the USA have some of the most lenient firearms regulation. New Hampshire for example had something like 27 total homicides in all of 2023, including ones not involving a firearm. Most of those were domestic disputes. The crime rate there is absurdly low even when you compare it to the small wealthy European nations everyone likes to circlejerk about. NH has one of the highest rates of gun ownership in the USA, and allows carrying without a license and no registration or anything needed to purchase.

I know that's just an anecdote but it does beg the question of whether guns have a causal relationship to crime rates or simply a correlation. I am inclined to believe it's overwhelmingly the latter and only a sprinkle of the former, based on the research I've done.

To extend that, gun control is worse than useless if what you care about is saving lives and reducing crime. The effect is minimal at best, and performative more than anything else. Every tax dollar and minute we spend on gun control could have a far greater payoff if we directed it toward addressing the root causes of these tragedies. Instead we just use guns as a scapegoat, pass restrictions on them, then pat ourselves on the back while kids continue to grow up in crippling poverty and adults are left with no support systems to turn to when life shits on them.

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[-] venoft 19 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

With a knife (or other manual weapon) you have to be trained, lucky or prepared to kill even a single person, with a gun any person can shoot a whole school. It's too much power for some people. Plus you add range to weapons, making it even more deadly and unpredictable (collateral damage, crossfire, etc).

If you set those cons against the pros of "it's fun to sometimes target practice" then it's clear the better option is to ban them, like most countries do. Most people aren't against the actual mechanical contraption known as guns, they're against the fear a shooting can happen to them, their loved ones, or other innocents.

And in terms of protecting yourself from people who do have guns: guess what, in countries where guns are banned 99% of the bad guys also don't have them.

[-] evasive_chimpanzee 15 points 1 month ago

If we are being honest, for most people, it's emotion over anything else. There are plenty of statistics looking at gun ownership rates and crime and suicide. I don't think many people would disagree with the sentiment that society would be better off if guns had never been invented.

Disagreements arise on two main points, I think. The first is whether or not the cat is out of the bag, so to speak, on guns. There are allegedly 300 million guns in the US. I have no clue if that's accurate, but personally, I think only very invasive government action could measurably reduce gun ownership rates. If the average gun owner owns, for example, 3 guns, passing laws or somehow getting them down to 2 guns doesn't actually change ownership rates. Personally, I don't know anyone who has gone from being a gun owner to not being a gun owner. With the rise in technology like 3d printing and a general rise in home manufacturing capability, the ability to make your own guns is only going to get easier. Automatic rifles were manufactured before widespread belief in the germ theory disease; they aren't high technology. I think that is something that countries without legal gun ownership are going to have to reckon with in the not so distant future.

The second point is whether the right to own guns is worth the harm they cause. As a society, we put up with a bunch of things that do great harm. Cigarettes are a prime example; they kill 15 times more Americans than cars do. Auto manufacturers have more or less forced Americans to buy cars to survive, so we put up with those deaths, but cigarettes arguably provide less "benefit" than guns. Despite this, we've basically decided it's worth allowing tobacco sales. Most people who own guns see the downsides, but think that they are outweighed by the benefits. Many non-owners disagree. This is a philosophical question, so there is not a correct answer.

There's also a class component to this, I believe. For many working class Americans, guns are the only appreciating asset they own. Many working class Americans also see gun ownership as a thumb in the eye of the wealthy; it's seen as one of few things that give power to the working class that they can hold over the wealthy. This is complicated by the fact that politics around gun control are completely flopped around in this country. Gun control is a conservative, right-wing, authoritarian action. Private ownership of firearms by the working class is left wing. Despite this, the political parties in America, who are both right wing, have flopped around on this issue. Your average working class republican voter would not believe that their gun ownership is left-wing solidarity, but it is.

Lastly, the reason I say that it's all based on emotion is that every time you hear someone say "common sense gun control", they are usually making their point on vibes, not evidence. Very little crime in the US is done with "assault weapons", and no crime is done with assault rifles, yet these categories draw the most concern. There are laws aimed at all sorts of cosmetic features. Some laws have even targeted safety features. Suppressors are seen as a necessary courtesy in some countries, but in America, they are difficult or impossible to get.

[-] HessiaNerd 2 points 1 month ago

Most people who own guns see the downsides, but think that they are outweighed by the benefits. Many non-owners disagree. This is a philosophical question, so there is not a correct answer.

I live in the sticks. I have a mountain lion living close to my house, I've seen it many times. We also have coyotes all around and I have small children. I keep my guns secured, I also have trigger locks. It's not likely I will need to use violence against these neighbors but if I do, I need a gun to survive. This is not philosophy.

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[-] Delphia 14 points 1 month ago

Because when the constitution was written there were 4 million "Americans" there are now 331 million.

When the constitution was written, it took 30 seconds to reload a single shot musket that had a maximum effective range of 100 yards. An AR15 can dump a 30 round magazine as fast as you can pull the trigger, be reloaded in 3 seconds, can hit targets out as far as someone can realistically see.

The problem with the rights is that they no longer function as intended. When they were written 20 civilian men with muskets was not significantly less dangerous than 20 soldiers with muskets, the idea that the people could stand up to a tyranical government was sound. Its not anymore. I dont care how well organised your anti-govt militia is the ATF or FBI could fuck you up without much trouble if you wanted to try them.

I say this as someone who thinks going shooting is enormously fun, I love the engineering, science and talent involved in it as a pursuit. But those "rights" mean mass shootings of innocent people dont even make the mainstream news half the time.

[-] shotgunpulse 5 points 1 month ago

The idea was obviously that the citizens would have the same gear as the government. Many soldiers even bought and brought civilian rifles when the government’s rifles were getting outdated.

The fact that FBI and the ATF could fuck people up doesn’t mean the people should be disarmed, rather it says those agencies should be dissolved IMO…

[-] [email protected] 4 points 1 month ago

The problem with the rights is that they no longer function as intended. When they were written 20 civilian men with muskets was not significantly less dangerous than 20 soldiers with muskets, the idea that the people could stand up to a tyranical government was sound. Its not anymore. I dont care how well organised your anti-govt militia is the ATF or FBI could fuck you up without much trouble if you wanted to try them.

This is actually an argument for why We The People need civilian A-10 Thunderbolt 2s, HIMARS, and Javelins, etc, not an argument for why we shouldn't have rights anymore.

[-] evasive_chimpanzee 4 points 1 month ago

Look how with all of our sophisticated technology, we lost the war in Vietnam (and the surrounding countries we did war crimes in), and we lost the war in Afghanistan. Greater technology doesn't always win, so even the level of arms we can legally obtain could still win a war.

The other thing to consider is that at the time the constitution was written, a single shot musket was not the pinnacle of weapons technology a private citizen could own. You could have a fully armed warship. It's not a good argument to lean on the intention of the founding fathers, because at that time, you could privately own a ship capable of leveling a coastal city. Personally, I think their opinion doesn't matter, anyway, cause they also intended for slavery to exist.

[-] Garbanzo 1 points 4 weeks ago

the idea that the people could stand up to a tyranical government was sound. Its not anymore. I dont care how well organised your anti-govt militia is the ATF or FBI could fuck you up without much trouble if you wanted to try them.

The Taliban and the IRA would disagree with that assessment

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[-] RememberTheApollo_ 14 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

Besides shootings? You’re kidding right? That’s like asking “why don’t people like cancer? (Except for the chemo and death part)”

[-] AirDevil 12 points 1 month ago

To preface, I understand it's part of the US Constitution so I know it'll never go away completely.

I'm not a fan of citizens being able to own a tool whose sole purpose is to kill. It's marketed as defense, but the underlying reason is because a gun is a tool with the power to kill. Guns have become so small and portable that an individual can conceal one and can end people's lives at will. I'm not comfortable with that power going unchecked.

I also believe 2A's original intent is not feasible today. A small group of people with muskets cannot overthrow an oppressive state or local government.

I understand the sub this is in, but just wanted to offer my sincere 2¢

[-] [email protected] 3 points 1 month ago

Guns are also very effective for threatening people, even if nobody gets shot. There is a legitimate use as a power equalizer for self defense, like if someone breaks into a house and there's an old dude in a wheelchair with a shotgun, they'll probably turn around and leave. But also it enables strongarm robberies.

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[-] [email protected] 2 points 1 month ago

Of course, in this case defense means to kill the attacker before they kill you or greatly injure your body. Technically more accurately the intent is to "stop the threat," because "still alive but no longer a threat" is an acceptable outcome, but ykwim.

Also a small group of people with muskets could take on the government when the government also had muskets. The "2a intent" argument isn't an argument for why rights should be restricted, this is an argument for civilian owned HIMARS and Javelins and all that fun stuff.

[-] SupraMario 2 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

Vietnam/Afghanistan/Iraq all would like a word.

Also every time a peoples government turns on them, the people are disarmed prior. This is a continuous event in history.

You also have a very closed minded view of how a revolution works. For whatever reason you seem to think it'll be the 14 gravy seals fighting...it won't be. It'll be gorilla warfare and it'll be bloody and violent. If we couldn't control countries that don't even look or speak like us, how do you think it'll work out when people who look like you and speak like you are your targets. You also have a large portion of the ground troops who are straight up 2A supporters and wouldn't be the ones siding with the gov.

This is all hypothetical anyways, as it's gotta take a lot more than talk to happen. People need to be hungry, jobless, homeless and not have a ton left to live for. So long as their money still spends at McDonald's and their iPhones power on. Nothing is going to happen.

Downvotes don't do anything on Lemmy...lol

[-] RecursiveParadox 4 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

You're getting downvoted and to be honest I'm not sure where you stand on the issue, but you are spitting truth about what it takes to take up arms against your own countrymen.

[-] SupraMario 6 points 1 month ago

Most people don't understand the level it takes to get to a civil war, and once you do reach that level, it's not going to turn out like how anyone thinks it will.

[-] Skipcast 10 points 1 month ago

The rest of the world is completely fine without Guns for Everyone™. With that said though it's kinda too late for the US to reign in on gun availability because there's already a shitton of guns everywhere so only law abiding people would turn in their guns. (talking out of my ass but it makes sense to me)

[-] [email protected] 1 points 1 month ago


Firearms regulation in Switzerland allows the acquisition of semi-automatic, and – with a may-issue permit – fully automatic firearms, by Swiss citizens and foreigners with or without permanent residence. The laws pertaining to the acquisition of firearms in Switzerland are amongst the most liberal in the world.

There's also https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Estimated_number_of_civilian_guns_per_capita_by_country showing that while the US has a disproportionate amount of guns it isn't actually alone in civilian ownership.

[-] Droggelbecher 14 points 1 month ago

To highlight, you're only allowed to shoot them at gun ranges and are only allowed to carry them to and from the gun range, stashed away in a bag. You can't even pop into the grocery shop on the way. And people actually stick with that.

[-] [email protected] 9 points 1 month ago

And people do go to prison when they don't stick to that. It's effectively just like if you were allowed to shoot guns at a range, but you had to leave it there when you're done.

[-] Droggelbecher 10 points 1 month ago

Also every gun owner I've met there seems to agree the rules are sensible. Nobody is complaining they can't open carry or shoot beer bottles in the woods. And at the ranges themselves safety is the very first thing ok everyone's mind and it shows. Liberal gun laws can work if the owners are responsible. Also, if citizens are reasonably well off and taken care of, violence in general is less likely. Compare, for example, with stabbings in the UK.

[-] SupraMario 1 points 1 month ago

If we actually focused on our citizens here in the USA, there wouldn't be the level of gun violence we see. Trying to take away firearms or even tell people when and were they can use them is next level stupid. It's just going to have more people in prison and create more cycles of harm.

[-] Aliendelarge 2 points 1 month ago

In addition to your points, Ipretty strongly agree with the various ideas that all of the bans, gun free zones, and other firearm villification just serves to glorify them to those that would do the rest of us harm. Its a terrible feedback loop that especially seems to impact the rare but terrifying mass killings we've seen over the years.

[-] [email protected] 7 points 1 month ago
  1. Violent crime. Guns are used for crime a lot. So much so that when you weigh their criminal uses against their criminal uses, it can be easy to decide they aren't worth it on the macro scale.

  2. Suicide. People who attempt suicide via jumping or something similar very often realize what they've done and bounce back. You can't do that if you've shot yourself in the head. While you'd think a suicide is a suicide, a less lethal method of suicide is better for society as a whole, because survivors often get their shit together.

  3. Crazy people. Especially those of us who live in cities encounter unhinged people who just start shit for any or no reason. We want the stakes to be lower, so that I can tell the Karen screaming racial epithets at my neighbor in the middle of the night to go the fuck home and let me sleep, without worrying they're going to try and murder me.

  4. Accidents happen. Much like "responsible drivers", " responsible gun owners" are less common than you think, and everyone thinks they are one. This is why institutions usually insist on things like mag safeties, that private owners detest. It's because statistically, a good number of people are just stupid sometimes.

  5. People are literally just scared of them. They're dangerous.

[-] [email protected] 3 points 1 month ago

On #4 Open Source Defense has a good article talking about safety at scale

[-] [email protected] 6 points 1 month ago

They don't consider it a right.

Seriously, that's what it comes down to. You either believe that the right to keep and bear arms is a human right, or you don't. A right can not, and should not, be restricted.

But who decides what is and isn't a right? Well, in the case of the U.S., it was written into the primary source of law for the country not long after that source was put into action.

Anything since then is a series of arguments about what that document "means". So far, the argument that the right to keep and bear arms being a human right rather than a right only of the state has been upheld. That's called the individual mandate iirc, though there may be other terminology in play.

Now, I'm not getting into a debate here, I despise rehashing the same bullshit over and over again. There's a shit ton of good arguments and bad arguments made by people on the two main sides of the issue (and there are actually more than two sides, but the loudest voices end up drowning out others), so you can find those if you really want.

Being real, most of the hot button issues come down to a group of people believing that something is a right, and others believing it isn't. Abortion? It's about the right to body autonomy vs the belief that body autonomy is not a human right that is inviolable. There is a section of those that don't believe it is a right that believe so because they also believe that the little thing inside has rights that trump the rights of the parent; but there are those that aren't part of that section that still don't believe it's a right and thus can be regulated accordingly.

I obviously do consider firearms to be essential to a human right, that being the right to defense, what with the whole comment starting with they. That being said, as soon as firearms cease to exist entirely, and/or everyone, including every police force and armed services are disarmed before citizens, I'd be willing to concede that firearms are no longer essential to that right. But the right to arms is a human right, regardless of what form of arms exist. If we went back to archery and swords, those would be the weapons essential to that core right. Which, to me, is the important part, that core right rather than the form that right takes.

Fwiw, idgaf about lib vs con bullshit. I'm so far left that the typical US liberal thinks I'm dangerous. I'm not far left, but I'm a damn sight further left than the usual people involved in this issue.

[-] bi_tux 4 points 1 month ago

I'm so far left that the typical US liberal thinks I'm dangerous.

*insert leftwing group* and 2A go like me and beer

[-] RecursiveParadox 2 points 1 month ago

[Given current circumstances, conflicted emotions here....]

[-] [email protected] 2 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

I agree. It's also by extension a right to personal protection independent of, not neccesarily against, the government.

I use to be a volunteer firefighter so us and the local police have worked together on various scenes and though we aren't super tight I feel I can trust them to do their duties as cops safely and effectively.

That said I know what the realistic response times are. I also know that there have been break ins in the neighborhood, including attempts to get into my home. So among other basic security measures I have guns to protect my family and I during the time between a 911 call being made and the cops arriving. I also carry when I can. It's not about being macho.

[-] [email protected] 1 points 1 month ago

This is a long and complicated topic with discussions everywhere. There's no need to re-hash it here.

It's largely based on disinformation and ignorance. Watch any of the interviews with random anti-gunners at protests and such and this becomes immediately obvious. They don't actually know anything about what they're advocating for.

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this post was submitted on 22 Mar 2024
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