Interesting commentary on interpreting gun violence data and a statement of solutions.
Here's another excellent piece on gun violence statistics that deals with violence in general (not just gun violence), and does so in a comprehensive and honest way. And the author is big on community like we are here at PP.
I saw some "Cherry picking" of data in both the above cited articles.
It becomes very hard to sift out and find the real root cause for the violence that we are talking about. What makes gun violence different than other forms of (extreme) violence? (Extreme being defined as murder or other personal acts of violence that leaves the victim injured)
There is "magical thinking" when it comes to gun control. Ala, "Eliminate the guns, eliminate the violence."
What I am saying is, there is no easy answer.
That does not mean that I am saying do nothing. I am saying that it is more important than ever to do the right things to reduce the violence.
The rule of law requires one to have a "moral compass." When that moral compass has been damaged, for whatever reason or by whatever force, the rule of law no longer applies to that individual.
Perhaps, there is an organic reason the individual has a damaged moral compass to begin with. Or, perhaps, due to chemical intervention, the individual who would normally have an intact moral compass, has it broken or clouded by the chemical influence.
Check your own compass. Sit quietly and examine your biases - all of them. Then ask yourself, what truly causes an individual to commit these acts of extreme violence. What outside factors led them to do what they did.
It's time we remove the cause and not treat the symptom.
I believe that Ian McGilchist makes a persausive case that our modern Western society is the root cause of many forms of mental illness. He says that many people have become alienated and disconnected from important social networks that give our lives meaning and a healthy sense of purpose.
It seems that our competitive and materialistic value systems are causing us to become less human. We are in fact becoming more like machines. Therefore we are collectively loosing the empathetic aspect of our nature. J.
I own guns - a semi-automatic .308 rifle, a semi auto 9mm handgun and a shotgun. I am not likely to give them up without a significant protest - however I think we need to look into the hows and whys surrounding firearm ownership today rather than simply relying on the Second Amendment. I draw your attention to some of the reasons this amendment was passed in the first place. I recently read an article relating to the main purpose of militias in the south to find that slave control was their primary function. What would happen if the we were attacked and the slaves rose up? Better not let that happen.
The article states "Georgia had State law in 1755 and 1757 that required all plantation owners or their male white employees to be members of the Georgia Militia, and for those armed militia members to make monthly inspections of the quarters of all slaves in the state. The law defined which counties had which armed militias and even required armed militia members to keep a keen eye out for slaves who may be planning uprisings."
As Dr. Carl T. Bogus wrote for the University of California Law Review in 1998, "The Georgia statutes required patrols, under the direction of commissioned militia officers, to examine every plantation each month and authorized them to search 'all Negro Houses for offensive Weapons and Ammunition' and to apprehend and give twenty lashes to any slave found outside plantation grounds." - "By the time the Constitution was ratified, hundreds of substantial slave uprisings had occurred across the South. Blacks outnumbered whites in large areas, and the state militias were used to both prevent and to put down slave uprisings. As Dr. Bogus points out, slavery can only exist in the context of a police state, and the enforcement of that police state was the explicit job of the militias."
My point is that while the Second Amendment is important, some of what it was based on has limited application today - we may find ourselves standing on a weaker foundation that we think, and therefore clearheaded examination of how our laws need to be formulated today is needed. And not based on a means to keep our slaves in check. We may find new militias organzed to control the debt slaves of today, and that may be us.
The complete article is available at http://truth-out.org/news/item/13890-the-second-amendment-was-ratified-to-preserve-slavery
jpitre Please do you own research and read the founders own words.
The Federalist Papers http://thomas.loc.gov/home/histdox/fedpapers.html
The Anti-Federalist Papers http://www.constitution.org/afp/afp.htm
George Washington "A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government."
Partick Henry "Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined"
Thomas Jefferson "The constitutions of most of our States assert, that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves, ... or they may act by representatives, freely and equally chosen; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed; that they are entitled to freedom of person, freedom of religion, freedom of property, and freedom of the press."
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