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  #5651  
Old 12-15-12, 11:35
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I think people are easy to manipulate when they are shocked and angry - hence the dictum, Don't let a serious crisis go to waste. It's a cynical tactic at best, and not worthy of a free people. You're basically assuming that the masses have to be propagandized and manipulated, in which case the bases of our governments need to be re-assessed. eg, What is the real value of universal suffrage, if the rule is driven by emotional manipulation and deception rather than reason and experience?

Besides, isn't this basically arguing for a type of pogrom against gun owners? Not you, but see here.
Unfortunately, there sometimes needs to be an incident that finally makes people come to their senses on some issues. I don't necessarily mean people should be propagandised but lessons need to be learned from incidences like today's and adequate measures taken to stop it from happening again. If that means that people are somewhat manipulated, then so be it.
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second post ever after reading the forum for the last few years and one thing i must say, ACF94 is probably the most intelligent poster here, never biased to BMC or Cadel, and never gets worked up over anything.
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  #5652  
Old 12-15-12, 16:58
phanatic phanatic is offline
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Originally Posted by blutto View Post
...but the money line is this...

"The U.S. gun murder rate is about 20 times the average for all other countries on this chart. That means that Americans are 20 times as likely to be killed by a gun than is someone from another developed country."

....interesting definition of developed methinks...


Cheers

blutto
LOL. Tell the truth blutto. Tell them why the murder rate is higher here than in other "developed" countries.

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  #5653  
Old 12-15-12, 17:10
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Unfortunately, there sometimes needs to be an incident that finally makes people come to their senses on some issues.
You are missing something, maybe because you aren't American, and I believe you haven't spent much, if any, time here. Violence, especially gun violence, has become part of the DNA of our culture here. We are nearly constantly entertained by it, profit from it, bask in it, even glorify it. Just glimpse at TV here. You can't swear. You can't show any nudity, even if celebrated as God's natural beauty. But you can show all the violence you want in the name of news, or entertainment. Murders, beatings, decapitations, eviscerations, and no one blinks an eye. The "good" guys kill the "bad" guys, with little if any shown ramifications. Video game violence celebrates the same. Now you probably watch many US movies and TV shows, but your country doesn't have the history of violence ours does.

You ask what incident will happen to bring change. I don't know that there will be one. Thurston, Columbine, Virginia Tech, on and on. School after school, killing after killing. There have been 26 school shootings in the last seven years alone. Three in one week in 2006, culminating with the Amish school massacre. A conference was held to discuss it then, but nothing changed. And I believe little if anything will change here. The mourning will be replaced by political fighting from the extremes, and we'll hardly be discussing this tragedy in a month. We will move on to bickering about other things, but we won't change much. As I said, violence is part of our DNA. A few months or years from now this process may repeat itself, perhaps even more horrific, as impossible as that may seem. We will stand in shock, briefly ponder why, and what can be done just the same. And we will likely do little or nothing then either.
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  #5654  
Old 12-15-12, 17:26
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This is just stupid. More people die in a week of auto accidents than a decade of mass shootings.

Who here is actually afraid they will be gunned down by a maniac during a mass shooting? Who is afraid they will be killed while cycling by a girl who is texting while driving? The risk of each of these two things happening are not in the same universe. You might as well be afraid of being struck by lightning.
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  #5655  
Old 12-15-12, 19:10
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You are missing something, maybe because you aren't American, and I believe you haven't spent much, if any, time here. Violence, especially gun violence, has become part of the DNA of our culture here. We are nearly constantly entertained by it, profit from it, bask in it, even glorify it. Just glimpse at TV here. You can't swear. You can't show any nudity, even if celebrated as God's natural beauty. But you can show all the violence you want in the name of news, or entertainment. Murders, beatings, decapitations, eviscerations, and no one blinks an eye. The "good" guys kill the "bad" guys, with little if any shown ramifications. Video game violence celebrates the same. Now you probably watch many US movies and TV shows, but your country doesn't have the history of violence ours does.

You ask what incident will happen to bring change. I don't know that there will be one. Thurston, Columbine, Virginia Tech, on and on. School after school, killing after killing. There have been 26 school shootings in the last seven years alone. Three in one week in 2006, culminating with the Amish school massacre. A conference was held to discuss it then, but nothing changed. And I believe little if anything will change here. The mourning will be replaced by political fighting from the extremes, and we'll hardly be discussing this tragedy in a month. We will move on to bickering about other things, but we won't change much. As I said, violence is part of our DNA. A few months or years from now this process may repeat itself, perhaps even more horrific, as impossible as that may seem. We will stand in shock, briefly ponder why, and what can be done just the same. And we will likely do little or nothing then either.
You have a knack of occasionally hitting the nail right smack on its head, Alpe. Chapeau! As much as it pains me to say, I cannot disagree with your analysis or conclusions. I am deeply pessimistic about the future. Obama has been a complete wimp as far as any action on guns is concerned. If we can't expect anything from the most 'socialist' President we've ever had (according to many on the wrong wing,) then we're really screwed.

This is not a partisan issue either. While there are undoubtedly more gun fanatics among the wingnut community than among other, more liberal groups, there are, sadly, always likely to be enough gun-loving, NRA sponsored Dems in Washington to prevent any meaningful gun control legislation from ever being passed - never mind the desperately necessary revision of that damn 2nd Amendment.

ACF - first you complain that I raise a political context so soon after this tragedy, then a few posts later you decide that this is, after all, the best time to raise the subject. Make up your mind. And do NOT use the word 'pogrom' in the context of gun control, I find that seriously offensive.
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  #5656  
Old 12-15-12, 19:20
aphronesis aphronesis is offline
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This is just stupid. More people die in a week of auto accidents than a decade of mass shootings.

Who here is actually afraid they will be gunned down by a maniac during a mass shooting? Who is afraid they will be killed while cycling by a girl who is texting while driving? The risk of each of these two things happening are not in the same universe. You might as well be afraid of being struck by lightning.
Yeah, but this raises the issue as to whether the climate of mass stupidity is part of the same spectrum as the environment that engenders psychotic breaks, or whether they're at least partially separate phenomena.

When in the US, I have next to no fear of being gunned down in such a situation, but that doesn't mean I want to live in a culture that repeatedly generates this type of individual.

Re. Alpe's point, it poses the question as to whether complete gun restrictions would weed out several of the clinically imbalanced and force them either to construct their own weapons or adapt their frustration to some minimal degree of social balance and functionality.

And, of course, the break in moral standards in the public sphere is not unconnected to the tragic sentiments that accrue to incidents like this, whereas the blatant negligence of accidental death is mostly invisible in terms of social backlash.

Last edited by aphronesis; 12-15-12 at 19:33.
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  #5657  
Old 12-15-12, 21:29
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...oddly enough the yearly numbers are pretty close...the gun carnage works out to 87/day and car carnage is 92/day....approximately 32000/year...
More than half of those are suicides, so take those out. The majority of the homicides are criminals killing other criminals, so take those out.
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  #5658  
Old 12-16-12, 01:31
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...last I checked those were all living breathing people who were all god's children...so what is your point?...

Cheers

blutto
The point is that it is freaking suicide. It has nothing to do with guns other than that is the method they chose to check out with. It could have just as easily been jumping off a bridge, cutting wrists, pills and alcohol, or carbon monoxide poisoning. If it's not one method, it will be another.

I don't really care if drug dealers kill each other.

Inflating stats for gun violence by including suicides is just lame as well as disingenuous..
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  #5659  
Old 12-16-12, 07:39
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At the cafe this morning whilst discussing the recent American tragedy with the barman between sips of cappuccino and my cornetto, this Roman lady next to me blurts out: Ma vendono le armi come le cigarette! Non è che siamo tanto normale, ma li son’ bruciati. “But they sell arms like cigarettes! It’s not that we’re so normal, but over there they’re out of their minds.”

The Roman lady, who frankly looked like she has been through a few spells and whom the Romans would regard as a true popolana (from the common, working class), molto alla mano ("very down to earth"), was capable in her folkloric nonchalance of hitting the nail on the head with proverbial wisdom. A strike, furthermore, that’s able to refute all the tormented and specious arguments put forward to justify what is simply an intolerable state in today’s America. “But they sell arms like cigarettes!” This is the problem: and it is one of numbers. There are 300,000,000 weapons circulating in America today.

What seems, therefore, so tragically obvious to Europeans, is the most incomprehensible of things to Americans; Americans, however, who have inherited the chromosomes of their forefathers, who were first in an armed rebellion against the British monarchy and then pioneers of a Far West, the native people of which though didn’t wish to part so easily with their territories. Hence, as it is so often said, there is a historical legacy in the US to contend with, which makes an already radically, iconized Constitution extremely difficult to change. The infamous right to bear arms, therefore, arose not merely as an XVIII principle of a rebellion (often imprecisely referred to as revolutionary movement), but became perpetuated as an expedient of the State, on sheer grounds of convenience. The US pioneer expansionism to satisfy an insatiable appetite for wealth opportunity, expanded the State further and further west; conveniently without in many cases the State having to intervene: You get to keep whatever land you are able to claim from the natives, but you have to defend it on your own.

A nation founded and built upon such pragmatism, is not so easily changeable when subsequently the market and the lobbies take over. For this is exactly what is in place: a market of death, supported by a ferocious gun lobby to satisfy the mighty US god of arms, who is the brother of that other supreme Olympian, the God of money; under a false pretense of “self -defense.” Such a reality makes the specious argument that “guns don’t kill, but the people who use them do,” merely the ridiculous business logic that has taken over for what it is: namely, a lie. It’s like saying: “Cigarettes don’t kill, smoking does." Who, though, would take that seriously?

When Adam Gopnik wrote about the horrors Virginia Tech 2007 (like many others), I said, to borrow his own prophesy, that things would continue to go ahead like this, in this way and with this gravity, which is exclusive to our country and unique among the wealthy, industrialized and so called civilized States. Unfortunately the prediction has come true.

It really is time for America to legislate against what has become a truly antiquated XVIII century principle and obsolete XIX century expedient, but also today's false pretense of "self-defense." It's simply time to regulate the arms market, if this can be done. It's also time to recognize the folly of our ways and work toward changing toxic performed mental habits. While the issue raised by aphronesis "as to whether the climate of mass stupidity is part of the same spectrum as the environment that engenders psychotic breaks, or whether they're at least partially separate phenomena," may be responded to by the following: since the culture of violence that exists in America today is embedded within a historical continuum, its merger to an aggressive market with lax regulations, has inevitably exploded into fatal catastrophes. By facilitating an environment in which the probability that psychotic breaks result in mass fatalities becomes more likely, the unleasing of its potential has become by now a foregone conclusion. Mass stupidity and individual psychosis, therefore, may indeed be more interrelated than has commonly been perceived. If we are justified in seeking a "radical change of state," and "epistemological break with the past;" then our task is to grasp the consequences of the most recent horrific event in relation to the different temporal orders that it involves. It therefore becomes essential to explore the plurality of the historical moment under consideration, projecting it beyond its own temporal limits while not problematizing theses of continuity and rupture with the past.

Last edited by rhubroma; 12-16-12 at 22:50.
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  #5660  
Old 12-16-12, 10:11
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This cruel tragedy has bought to light some stats which are even more disturbing. My sympathies to everyone affected.

Combine the two separate data sources below and......

The black population is a small enough minority that it doesn't affect the overall stats that much. 3deaths/100k per year for white Americans means you're roughly 10 times more likely to die from firearm homicide in America than in other western countries, if you're white.

About 20deaths/100k per year for black Americans means you're roughly 60 times more likely to die from firearm homicide in America than in other western countries, if you're black.

And then there's the school kids getting killed.

Thanks for your insights Alp. To non-Americans, American attitudes to firearms are as baffling as your health system. Nuff said.

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Originally Posted by phanatic View Post
LOL. Tell the truth blutto. Tell them why the murder rate is higher here than in other "developed" countries.

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Originally Posted by blutto View Post
'...'Gun Deaths - International Comparisons
Gun deaths per 100,000 population (for the year indicated):

Homicide Suicide Other (inc Accident)

USA (2001) .....3.98 ..... 5.92 .....0.36
Italy (1997) .....0.81 .....1.1..... 0.07
Switzerland (1998) ....0.50.....5.8..... 0.10
Canada (2002) ......0.4..... 2.0..... 0.04
Finland (2003) ..... 0.35.... 4.45..... 0.10
Australia (2001) .... 0.24 ....1.34 ...... 0.10
France (2001) .....0.21 ..... 3.4 ..... 0.49
England/Wales (2002) .....0.15 ..... 0.2 .....0.03
Scotland (2002) .....0.06 .....0.2 .....0.02
Japan (2002) ..... 0.02 .....0.04 .....0

Data taken from Cukier and Sidel (2006) The Global Gun Epidemic. Praeger Security International. Westport.'...'
@phanatic, blutto was telling the truth.
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