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Gun Control In Australia vs the USA


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#41 Khaiy   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1342

Posted 27 April 2013 - 11:54 AM

I think that a lot of the Europeans here underestimate the awesome power of a very long and horribly insecure land border with Mexico. Hungary has a grand total of 2171km of land borders, and those are with countries that probably don't have any more guns than Hungary does. US has 3169km of border just with fucking Mexico, and most of it's wilderness and desert.

Granted, in recent years it seems like Obama's fast and furious dumbfuckery sent more guns that way than were coming in this way, but still the fact remains that if you're an asshole who wants a gun but the government won't let you buy one, you can bet your ass that somebody down there will be willing to sell you one and launch it over the fence with a drug catapult.

 

*sigh*

 

You often have good points to discuss, but your rampant anti-Obama-ism sometimes makes them hard to engage. "Obama's fast and furious" indeed.

 

As to Mexico, that the US shares a border with it isn't a good backdrop for national policy. Even if I bought the argument that it's a lawless war zone and people who live near there must have guns to ensure their safety (which I don't), that has nothing to do with the value of having guns in Iowa. If gun availability is a  bad idea absent a war zone, then there are better approaches than making guns incredibly easy to get, everywhere, all the time, with no consequences for improper use.



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#42 Khatharr   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 3084

Posted 27 April 2013 - 02:10 PM

Rather than waste any energy on this I'll just drop the obligatory memepic:

 

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#43 szecs   Members   -  Reputation: 2185

Posted 27 April 2013 - 03:28 PM

Hungary has a border with some former Yugoslavian countries. Remember some events from Yugoslavia?

And some other countries where they hate us as shit.



#44 phantom   Moderators   -  Reputation: 7601

Posted 27 April 2013 - 05:50 PM

I really think the argument that having guns in case of revolution not making sense is really ignorant of American history. You might not have the same frame of reference living somewhere else, but the US was literally founded by a group of armed citizens fighting for something they believed in against a government that had them totally outgunned. I don't understand how you could claim it's absurd when the country owes it's existence to that right.

Yes, and Europe was a candy land of happiness and light until that time with no problems what so ever; it's not like we've basically spent all our history bashing the crap out of each other in numerous wars and battles, including two of probably the bloodiest conflicts ever, over the years.

#45 AltarofScience   Members   -  Reputation: 935

Posted 27 April 2013 - 06:28 PM

I really think the argument that having guns in case of revolution not making sense is really ignorant of American history. You might not have the same frame of reference living somewhere else, but the US was literally founded by a group of armed citizens fighting for something they believed in against a government that had them totally outgunned. I don't understand how you could claim it's absurd when the country owes it's existence to that right.

Yes, and Europe was a candy land of happiness and light until that time with no problems what so ever; it's not like we've basically spent all our history bashing the crap out of each other in numerous wars and battles, including two of probably the bloodiest conflicts ever, over the years.

Yes, BUT AMERICA IS SPECIAL, GOD!!!



#46 Memories are Better   Prime Members   -  Reputation: 769

Posted 27 April 2013 - 08:24 PM

In UK guns, mace, swords, crossbows etc are banned, we did during the socialism era have a increase in firearm crime but it is reducing again, the numbers are very low and I don't think anyone cares to have guns legal.

 

What SHOULD be legal is mace and the right to kick someone's ass if they break into your home. We have stupid self defence rules :'( which means you can only use reasonable force IF the attacker is going to attack you and you can prove that they did otherwise you have to sit back drink tea, watch them leave, call the police, wait hours for them to show up, make them write out a ticket, wipe their ass with it and give it to you.

 

Anyway back on topic, I am not a fan of guns, mainly because of how easy they are at inflicting damage at such range. If I was in the US I would likely want an all out medieval fight with swords, staves and daggers. Guns seem really boring, but then I get called weird for not getting excited for fireworks.



#47 Alpha_ProgDes   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4692

Posted 27 April 2013 - 09:04 PM

If I was in the US I would likely want an all out medieval fight with swords, staves and daggers.

 

This should either be an anime or a video game! I'm not making light of your post, but 10 different awesome ideas just popped in my head.


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#48 szecs   Members   -  Reputation: 2185

Posted 28 April 2013 - 12:17 AM

I really think the argument that having guns in case of revolution not making sense is really ignorant of American history. You might not have the same frame of reference living somewhere else, but the US was literally founded by a group of armed citizens fighting for something they believed in against a government that had them totally outgunned. I don't understand how you could claim it's absurd when the country owes it's existence to that right.

Yes, and Europe was a candy land of happiness and light until that time with no problems what so ever; it's not like we've basically spent all our history bashing the crap out of each other in numerous wars and battles, including two of probably the bloodiest conflicts ever, over the years.

We did those with cudgels. Just so you know.



#49 kryotech   Members   -  Reputation: 944

Posted 28 April 2013 - 06:36 AM

What I do not get is how removing guns will not reduce gun crime in the US.

 

The legitimate argument is: If you remove all the guns from the law-abiding citizens, how will they protect themselves from the law-breaking criminals (who have guns)? How will the gov't ensure that no one has guns? Citizen and criminal alike.

 

No solution will work overnight. It will take time to confiscate all firearms (of which there are many). 

 

Trust me, if the government was going to become a dictatorship soon, we'd see the signs. It's not happening any time soon. By that point, people would find ways to acquire weapons. I don't see how people have this perception that the government might become a dictatorship.

America isn't turning into a dictatorship. It's actually turning into something worse. Some dictatorships through history have been surprisingly honest and non-corrupt. Pretty nuts when an honest dictatorship is preferable to the soggy shitfest that we have now, where copyright violations can net you more prison time than rape or murder, and if someone has enough money they can do pretty much whatever they want. Besides, obama seems to be trying to turn it into... something, anyway. What do you call it when rampant budget cuts and a sequester proposed by obama himself run wild through the country, when the White house can't even do tours any more because there's no more money, but the president decides that this would be an excellent time to take back to back multi-million dollar vacations and golf trips (on the taxpayer dime), then when people complain he generously pledges to donate 5% of his meager official salary in the name of doing his fair share? If not a dictatorship, then what the fuck, exactly, is that?

People crack me up. You have things like Occupy Wall Street, where a bunch of hippies dress up in their tightest skinny jeans and their horn-rimmy-est glasses and march around screaming about how wall street corruption is ruining this country, but you tell them that the government might (and probably will) someday turn on them and they get all "ban guns, government won't hurt us!" instead. It's funny, I tell ya.

 

He was elected by voting. Most people clearly agree with him on something. You may not agree with him, but the good news for anyone who does not agree with him (I don't agree with everything he's doing), guess what? In this system, he can't run for reelection next election year, you can vote for someone else. Not exactly a dictator there.

 

But somehow a President going on multimillion dollar vacations (which many Presidents have done, in economic bad times as well) and passing policies that some people do not agree with (I don't agree with the way the sequester came about, but that's a different argument) somehow shows the makings of the dictator? The key word in your statement is that the government 'might' someday turn on the people. It's not guaranteed to happen, and it's not happening under President Obama. If you do not like President Obama, or something else, using a gun is not the answer. As we posted earlier, many movements have brought about lots of changes in this country. The entire point of democracy is to let the people decide rather than let guns decide.


Kryotech

#50 mhagain   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 8287

Posted 28 April 2013 - 08:10 AM

What I do not get is how removing guns will not reduce gun crime in the US.

 

The legitimate argument is: If you remove all the guns from the law-abiding citizens, how will they protect themselves from the law-breaking criminals (who have guns)? How will the gov't ensure that no one has guns? Citizen and criminal alike.

 

I don't think that's a legitimate argument because the obvious answer is: "the same way as they do in other countries".  Essentially, for any argument in favour of US gun laws, all that one needs to do is point at other countries and the argument evaporates.  There is plenty of evidence throughout the world that processes of law and order, democracy, etc can and do work (and often work quite well) without actually having an armed citizenry.


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#51 Hodgman   Moderators   -  Reputation: 32069

Posted 28 April 2013 - 08:28 AM

Your turn to think very closely about something, now. No knee-jerk reactions, here, no blindly spouting the party line. Exactly why is it a bad idea for the "average person" to own a firearm? Are average people the ones who do bad things with them? Is it honestly your opinion that a full 50% of the population would use firearms to commit crimes or otherwise behave irresponsibly with a gun if they had one? Really? Yikes. I wonder what kind of people you keep around you, that you have that perception.

On the other side of the fence, we have to wonder what kind of people you keep around, where it seems like a normal idea for everyone to possess a tool that has the only purpose of killing and maiming people (i.e. handguns). Imagine if everyone had torture racks, and nooses, and scalpals and iron maidens in their garage, but of course didn't use them because there's no need. That would be weird right? To many of us who live in places where guns are restricted, the very idea of owning a killing device is just a very perverted thought. "Why would you want a killing device in your house - that's creepy!"

Yes, a farmer with a long centre-fire rifle is a different situation. His tool is built for the purpose of killing animals, of which humans are a form of, but the primary use isn't killing people. It can be used for that purpose, and it's an extremely dangerous tool, so if he's not crazy/creepy, he'd keep it disassembled and locked up when not in use.
Again, if you went around to someone's house and they had functional rifles lying out in the open, it would be a very weird and uncomfortable situation... like seeing someone smoking at the gas station.

This is what outsiders mean when we talk about the US's "gun culture". You guys have an entirely different layer of abstraction that you use to think about weapons -- like when Jack Thompson refers to video games as "murder simulators" and we just think he's crazy and disconnected, Jack (assuming he's genuine) is operating on a totally different wavelength.
To us, the question is never "why shouldn't we have guns?", but "why on earth would you want a murder tool?". It's just very weird to be so very comfortable about these things.
 
Likewise, in many countries, and a small number of US states, simply being in possession of a set of lock-picks legally makes you guilty of having criminal intent to use them. It's so creepy for a person (without reason) to posses a trespassing-tool, that people are ok with them simply not being allowed outside of their professional use, and jumping to criminal conclusions. Likewise again with large quantities of drugs, the law makes the assumption that a person with a kilogram of dope has the criminal intention to distribute it, even if in fact it's for personal use, and apparently the average person is ok with being creeped out by people with bricks of dope.
 
Back to what you were saying, it's not that 50% of people will abuse the tool, but that any % at all will. Even if it's 0.001%, that's a huge number of incidents when multiplied by the population of a nation.
To take it to the extreme, imagine that we could give every household a tsar bomba. Now, from every day experience with our sane community, there'd be no problem, as no one would ever detonate their bomb... but if there's even a single unhinged person out of 7 billion, then we're in for one hell of an incident. There are no downsides to not allowing everyone to own a WMD, and there's a huge positive (there's very, very few WMD incidents).
You have to draw the line somewhere (surely you don't think that citizens should be allowed to posses nukes?), and the point at which the line is drawn should logically be at the best cost/benefit point -- where people are not inconvenienced by the restrictions, but the benefits of them are greatest. Obviously we don't want to live in a prison state, where you have to go through the equivalent of airport security every day and eat with plastic cutlery, but we don't want madmen detonating nukes either.
To us, small arms are the logical extreme of where the line should be placed -- they can exist where there is a genuine need, but beyond that they should be restricted for the greater good.
 
 

Maybe a partial solution would be to impose much harsher penalties on criminal uses of guns. That should at least discourage the less committed criminals, which frees up resources to tackle the hard-core bad guys, who would probably have guns no matter what the law says.

If the only change was that the penalty of "armed robbery with a handgun" was doubled, but "armed robbery" of other sorts was unchanged, I don't see how the pro-guns lobby would be able to oppose it as usual... Surely they're advocates for responsible gun ownership, and condemn the criminal use of guns?
 
The US already does this to a small extent. For example, certain types of ammunition are illegal, and it can be a crime to make use of restricted ammunition in the course of committing a crime. So robbing a bank with FMJ rounds is one thing, but robbing a bank with explosive rounds will really increase your punishment.
 


What I do not get is how removing guns will not reduce gun crime in the US.

The legitimate argument is: If you remove all the guns from the law-abiding citizens, how will they protect themselves from the law-breaking criminals (who have guns)? How will the gov't ensure that no one has guns? Citizen and criminal alike.


I personally don't see that as a legitimate argument... It makes the assumption that the presence of guns prevents crime -- that if you're being mugged by a guy with a gun, that you can stop it by being in possession of your own gun. I don't believe this is at all true in the general case, so the argument is just a red herring to me.
 
How many mass shootings in the US have been stopped by an armed citizen, compared to an unarmed citizen, or an armed officer?

Even if having everyone carrying guns is effective at reducing gun crime (I feel silly just typing that...), this need would diminish over time as guns are removed. At the same time that this citizen-defence capacity is diminished, the availability of weapons to murderers is also diminished. An unhinged person can't walk into a grocery store and walk out with a gun, so the capability for defence drops along with the capability of attack.


The government ensures that no one has guns the same way they prohibit anything. They confiscate them when found, and enact punishments for possession. If you get an extra 10 years in jail for being caught with a gun, then you'd be much better off committing crimes with a different weapon. It's not worth the risk to go carrying a gun.
 
If you look at the UK for example, they don't have guns, but you've got to assume that criminal gangs can illegally import them into the country... so this should be a big problem, right? It's so much not a problem, that their beat cops don't even carry guns of their own. If there actually is an incident with a gun, then SWAT appears with more guns and armour.
 
Due to this, most of the "gun crime" (armed robberies, etc) in Australia are done with fake guns or replicas with blanks! Circumventing the prohibition is too expensive, and the punishments are too great (and the risk of accidentally shooting someone is also too great -- but that's another issue, the US's homicide rate in general is absurdly high).
Common criminals can't even afford to get their hands on guns (like with prohibition of anything, legal enforcement causes the prices to skyrocket) so it's mainly the large organized crime syndicates that use them criminally... and these guys only use them to kill each other. You're not going to get mugged on the street-corner by a kingpin.

Edited by Hodgman, 28 April 2013 - 09:13 AM.


#52 phantom   Moderators   -  Reputation: 7601

Posted 28 April 2013 - 01:41 PM

If you look at the UK for example, they don't have guns, but you've got to assume that criminal gangs can illegally import them into the country... so this should be a big problem, right? It's so much not a problem, that their beat cops don't even carry guns of their own. If there actually is an incident with a gun, then SWAT appears with more guns and armour.

More to the point there is resistance from the Police over the idea of regular offices carrying fire arms. Recently there was a situation in Liverpool where two female offices were killed during a routine investigation (basically they were ambushed by a guy with a gun and at least one hand grenade) and there was the normal out pouring of grief and the question of should office be armed was of course raised again and the Police Federation came back with a strong 'no' to the idea.

#53 Alpha_ProgDes   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4692

Posted 28 April 2013 - 04:08 PM

I personally don't see that as a legitimate argument... It makes the assumption that the presence of guns prevents crime -- that if you're being mugged by a guy with a gun, that you can stop it by being in possession of your own gun. I don't believe this is at all true in the general case, so the argument is just a red herring to me.

 

It doesn't make that assumption at all. It only makes the assumption that the law-abiding citizen is at a disadvantage when dealing with another citizen committing a crime. The criminal may or may not have a gun. The LAC will always not have a gun.


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#54 ChaosEngine   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2509

Posted 28 April 2013 - 04:42 PM

I, personally, don't draw the connection of guns==liberty. For me, it's guns==sport, protection of the herd against predators, and last-ditch resort for protection against violence perpetrated against me or my family should the worst happen in any way, shape or form. I'm not some kind of gun-packing gunslinger wannabe who wears a handgun on my hip and swaggers around talking about it. There really aren't many like that even around here, where guns are so prevalent. Most everyone I know locks their guns up when they aren't needed, enrolls their children in hunter safety so that they, hopefully, learn to not do anything stupid, and just continues to live their lives aware that guns are just tools that have their use, and not some kind of preternaturally malevolent force that yearns to murder children and must be restrained at all costs by the leash of Law.

 

All of which I find perfectly reasonable, and all of which are explicitly catered for under Australian gun legislation.

 

In NZ, you need a licence to own a firearm. I cannot fathom why anyone would think this is a bad idea. I don't own a gun, but one day I'd like to go deer hunting (mmm, tasty bambi's mom). When I get around to it, I'll apply for a licence. It's simply not a problem. 

 

As for the "rising up against a tyrannical government" argument, I find it inherently flawed. Alex Jones, when he lost his mind being interviewed by Piers Morgan (the insane meets the inane), cited the example of the Philippines, where Marcos seized all the guns when he took over the government. So here we are, a clearly despotic regime, an armed populace and a move to disarm said populace. Surely the righteous citizens used their arms to prevent this dictatorship? Nope, he remained in power until the "People Power Revolution" forced him out with non-violent means. 

 

If you look at right now in the US, a lot of the same people who claim Obama is a dictator are the same people who claim they need their guns to stop dictators. By their own measure, haven't they failed? Ted Nugent is neither dead nor in jail.


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#55 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 28 April 2013 - 07:58 PM

phantom, on 27 Apr 2013 - 20:53, said:
Yes, and Europe was a candy land of happiness and light until that time with no problems what so ever; it's not like we've basically spent all our history bashing the crap out of each other in numerous wars and battles, including two of probably the bloodiest conflicts ever, over the years.

To my knowledge most of the European conflicts in recent history have been between militaries, not revolutions of armed citizens. The U.S. owes it's existence in large part to those rights. It has both historical and ideological significance. You can disagree with it, but you at least need to be aware that it is a core part of our history. It is not as trivially tied to our society as it is being made out to be; it exists at the very core of it.

#56 Alpha_ProgDes   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4692

Posted 28 April 2013 - 08:37 PM

phantom, on 27 Apr 2013 - 20:53, said:
Yes, and Europe was a candy land of happiness and light until that time with no problems what so ever; it's not like we've basically spent all our history bashing the crap out of each other in numerous wars and battles, including two of probably the bloodiest conflicts ever, over the years.

To my knowledge most of the European conflicts in recent history have been between militaries, not revolutions of armed citizens. The U.S. owes it's existence in large part to those rights. It has both historical and ideological significance. You can disagree with it, but you at least need to be aware that it is a core part of our history. It is not as trivially tied to our society as it is being made out to be; it exists at the very core of it.

 

I believe there was a war in England which led to the laws that our own Bill of Rights (and to some degree Constitution) is based on. And I'm sure France has had a civil war or two.


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#57 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 28 April 2013 - 09:48 PM

I believe there was a war in England which led to the laws that our own Bill of Rights (and to some degree Constitution) is based on. And I'm sure France has had a civil war or two.

Weren't the British civil wars fought largely between formal armies? The French revolution is a more relevant parallel.

#58 ChaosEngine   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2509

Posted 28 April 2013 - 10:02 PM

I believe there was a war in England which led to the laws that our own Bill of Rights (and to some degree Constitution) is based on. And I'm sure France has had a civil war or two.

Weren't the British civil wars fought largely between formal armies? The French revolution is a more relevant parallel.

Not really. The French revolution was internal. A closer parallel would be the Irish War of Independence (not the North, the Republic)

 

Given that it was actually much more recent conflict than US Independence, you would imagine that Ireland would be holding tight to the same ideals that the nation was founded by armed uprising. Yet, the gun laws in Ireland are very similar to those in Australia, and no-one complains about it. Even the police aren't armed (except for a few "swat" style units).


Edited by ChaosEngine, 28 April 2013 - 10:03 PM.

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#59 szecs   Members   -  Reputation: 2185

Posted 28 April 2013 - 10:51 PM

Hungarian people (not the army) revolted against the Soviet Union with Molotov-cocktails. Wasn't successful though (1956)... There were similar events in Europe though they were not successful. You know, rebellions against some huge powers, not against just your own country's regime....

Romania/killing Ceausescu is also worth looking into

The Soviet Union also collapsed. Might be an important event. And people (not just politicians) without guns had a lot to do with it.

You talk about recent History when talking about Europe. In the US, can you list some recent events you talk about?

What are the event you always talk about? Independence...okay, um...... the Civil War? Does that count as something started by the people, not politicians/armies?

I'm really curious, I will look into it.

Something that is always overlooked when talking about people's rebellion: usually they get out of hand soon, they turn into random violence, looting, raping, pointless killings and aggression, etc. It' just like a taboo. People only talk positively of rebellions.

My father was there in 1956, he saw the tortured-to-death 18 year old soldiers who were ordered to be there but hurt no one. Cut-out hearts of those helpless boys. Hung officers who were in offices that had nothing to do with maintaining the regime. Etc

Recent "rebellions" (in France, Hungary dunno about others): burnt down cars, broken shop-windows, looting.

Yup, let people have guns and rebel on their own!


Edited by szecs, 28 April 2013 - 10:53 PM.


#60 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 29 April 2013 - 06:32 AM

Not really. The French revolution was internal. A closer parallel would be the Irish War of Independence (not the North, the Republic)
 
Given that it was actually much more recent conflict than US Independence, you would imagine that Ireland would be holding tight to the same ideals that the nation was founded by armed uprising. Yet, the gun laws in Ireland are very similar to those in Australia, and no-one complains about it. Even the police aren't armed (except for a few "swat" style units).

Ireland does seem to be a better example. According to your wiki link their gun laws aren't that strict. Most of the guns used in crimes in America would still be legal to own as best I can tell. The US system currently seems differently strict as you just need character references in Ireland where America requires background checks.

edit: wrong words.

double edit: Ireland seems more restrictive toward rifles, but rifles aren't that large a problem in the US to begin with. Their handgun legislation seems to make handguns as available as they would be in the US.

Edited by way2lazy2care, 29 April 2013 - 08:46 AM.





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