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Thread: Debate Thread - Children and Guns

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    Two posters, swine and mcdonalk, have agreed to a one-on-one debate on this subject. [Please respect our request that only the two of them, as participants, and I, as a facilitator, post in this thread. We know that we cannot enforce this arrangement, but stray posts will interfere with the one-on-one nature of the debate.] [The text in yellow is no longer in force and is left for the record only. All posters are welcome to post their thoughts in the post mortem to the debate.]

    Of course, folks will want to comment on the goings on. Feel free to start other threads or, better yet, use the the thread where we discussed creating this one.

    The statement being debated is: "Further relaxation of open carry restrictions increases the risk that children will be negiligently, accidentally, or intentionally shot."

    swine will be arguing the affirmative; mcdonalk, the negative.

    There seems to be a tacit agreement that swine will start. The format will be simple. The posts will alternate, with mcdonalk getting the last word. Double posts will not be allowed.

    Some more ground rules:

    Posts may not be edited after a response has been posted or, if a response has not yet been posted, more than twenty minutes after posting.

    The debaters are free to get help elsewhere, but only they may post for their side.

    No ad hominem. Feel free to go after each other's words with a vengeance. Lay off the other poster himself. Of course, pointing out a logic flaw (false choice, post hoc, strawman, etc.) is not ad hominem.

    After a certain number of posts, or at an agreed time, each poster will get a chance to post a single closing argument. We will hash that out in the other thread.

    I will try to stay out of the thread. If someone runs afoul of our simple rules, I will interject a gentle reminder. Any questions about the format should be addressed in the other thread. Let's keep this thread as clean as possible.

    If this is acceptable, we can start. swine, your opening statement, please. mcdonalk, you may post your opening statement following swine's.

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    Ok, I hope I'm doing this right. Here's my opening statement:

    When I was about 10 years old I discovered a revolver in my dad's bottom dresser drawer. I don't know the brand or vintage or caliber. It may have been a .38 but to me it was just a revolver and it was a long time ago. I found it fascinating. I played with it the way a kid that age will play with dump trucks. I pretended to be a gangster or a cop or whatever, making 'pish, pish' noises while I pointed it at various imaginary opponents.



    Some years later I was a freshman in high school. Balboa High in San Francisco was more like a minimum security prison than a school in those days, and I was bullied at that school. One day I thought I would sneak my dad's gun out of the drawer and take it with me to impress my friends and to show it to one or two of the bullies. If I was thinking at all, I was thinking that this might make me seem more of a 'player' and less of a ‘geek’, and maybe the bullies would leave me alone. That part worked Ok, but it didn't matter too much because I was ratted out to the principal and I was expelled. I was also put on juvenile detention and had to take a whole year of high school from home while checking in regularly at the detention center, popularly known as 'Juvie'. My father was not a 'player'. He was a very gentle man - an Evangelical Minister as it happens. I have no idea why he kept a gun in his dresser or where he got it from, or why. We never talked about any of this. He let the 'authorities' do the job of learning me my lesson and disciplining me for my dangerous behavior (my foolishness actually). I think he also felt a bit guilty having a gun so readily accessible to his curious son.



    These days, in the days of 'open carry' permissiveness, none of this would have been a problem. I could have just gone down to City Hall, or wherever, and gotten my license to ‘carry’ and everything would have been fine, but in those days, it was considered very bad news for a 12 or 13 year old kid to carry a loaded firearm on his person. Actually, in all seriousness, I think it still is, so what I mean by an 'unresolved issue' is the question as to whether or not children should be granted 'open carry' licenses in order to combat bullying in school and other such nuisances, such as kidnapping and sexual molestation. I would guess not, but the question remains, why not? And if the overall objective of 'open carry' legalization is to permit folks to protect themselves, then who's going to protect the children, the elderly, and the disabled who, for various reasons, probably can't get an 'open carry' license, and none of us would want them to have one anyway?



    I’ve heard it said that those not qualified for an ‘open carry’ license can be protected by those who are qualified, but that would seem to mean that all the unqualifieds would need to hire a body guard or stay within firing range of their parents 24/7. That doesn’t seem practical to me.

    So, my position with regard to ‘open carry’ legalization is that it can remain a fantasy but not a reality until this issue, the intersection of guns and children, is thoroughly and satisfactorily resolved.

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    mcdonalk, your opening statement, please.

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    Swine to mcdonalk, you have plenty of time because I'm going out to dinner and a play now with my wife and won't be back until after 11:00 PM Pacific, and will probably just go to bed at that point. So take your time.

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    Regular Member Brimstone Baritone's Avatar
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    I wanted to get this typed up tonight because the next three days are likely to be very busy for me. My opening statement:

    It is a dangerous world we live in. All the more dangerous because so many of us are insulated from that violence by a thin veil of perceived safety. Growing up, guns were something 'other people' had. My father worked in a hospital operating room, and every night he went to work he had to deal with the results of the misuse of guns. Due to his choices, his children were not taught hands-on firearm safety. We were taught discipline and the difference between right and wrong. We were taught, intellectually, what damage people could do with guns, but we were taught that the police were responsible for protecting the people and preventing crime and that we had no need for a gun in the house, where someone might get hurt.

    Although I still respect my father's reasons, I look back and realize how thin the veil of safety really was. My family had practically no way of defending our home or our lives. It makes me sad that my father, a good country man who served in the Air Force and spent his life helping to save the lives of others, could have so willfully and negligently left his family defenseless. All because of the well-intentioned decision that he didn't want to risk his children negligently or accidentally suffering the kinds of wounds he was so familiar with.

    Although my father taught me that adults, teachers, and the police were responsible for my safety, it didn't take me long to realize that this wasn't the way the real world worked. When I was a child, a truck delivering lime (I think) for the local cement plant lost control and overturned on our property. Dad immediately called the city police, who promptly informed him that we were outside their jurisdiction, and that we needed to call the county. The county informed my father that we were clearly incorporated into the city, and that they needed to take responsibility. I remember my father telling the city dispatcher when he called back "It's a damn good thing we aren't being robbed. We'd be dead by now." But don't forget, the police are responsible for our protection.

    I was in middle school when the Columbine shooting happened. I vaguely recall wondering how the parents, the police, and the teachers could have allowed such a horrible thing to happen. When I was in high school, the police came in with drug dogs and searched the entire school. We were instructed by our principal that we were in 'lock down' and no one was allowed to leave the classrooms for any reason. We were also informed that this would be the same procedure followed if there were someone with a gun in the school. Alarm bells started going off in my head! What good would it do, if we were being attacked like Columbine High School, to just sit tight in the classroom waiting on the police? I decided that day that the first thing I would do is throw a desk through a window and run for my life. I later objected to the policy and, in my foolish innocence, tried to explain how evacuation of the school would be preferable to sitting there waiting to get shot. Without going into the full details, I was nearly expelled for questioning the authority of the ones who were supposed to be responsible for my protection.

    I am thankful that the lessons I learned weren't learned at the hands of a violent criminal. Although I am saddened that many people still haven't learned these lessons, I am appalled that so many of those people want to deny others the right and the ability to protect themselves.

    Now to the point, if we agree that we are responsible for our own protection, who is responsible for the protection of children? Who's duty is it to protect those who are unable to protect themselves? My father had the right answer: Adults, teachers, and the police. The problem with gun control is that it has taken away tools that adults and teachers could use to protect our youth, while the dangers of society coupled with budget cuts for law-enforcement agencies has lengthened police response times. The answer to gun violence is not more laws, it is stricter enforcement of laws and stricter punishments for those who break them. The answer for preventing accidental and negligent death is not hiding our guns from children like some evil thing that dare not be mentioned or admitted to. It is information, it is exposure, and it is safety training starting as soon as they are old enough to first be curious.
    There was a time that the pieces fit, but I watched them fall away, mildewed and smoldering, strangled by our coveting. I've done the math enough to know the dangers of our second guessing. Doomed to crumble, unless we grow and strengthen our communication. -Tool, "Schism"

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    At this point we will continue alternating posts until it is time to do the closing posts. Please only post your arguments. All other posts are more appropriately placed in the other thread.

    Thanks to all who have respected our request to keep this thread clean of kibitzing.

    swine, your turn.

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    I don’t want to focus entirely on mcdonalk’s opening statement since he did me the courtesy of avoiding a point by point response to mine, but I must say something in response or be thought not to have one:



    Our respective fathers appear to have been similarly good men, if a bit misguided about a few things as whose fathers aren’t, or mothers for that matter? I think your father’s choice not to have guns in the house was a good one, and he certainly didn’t ‘willfully and negligently leave his family defenseless’. Good grief! Ease up on the guy. It was his carefully considered choice, and the same one made by millions of other fathers in this country, including me. My choice to do the same thing he did was based to some extent on my experience outlined in my opening statement. I don’t want any member of my family to have an encounter with a lethal weapon, like I did in my childhood, as a result of my misguided notions about my need and my ability to defend my household with a gun. Allow me to quickly add that I fully respect, if not endorse, other fathers and mothers making a different choice. And though you seem quite young, since you were in middle school 11 years ago, you may well have made ‘the other’ choice already and that’s your privilege; it’s your house.



    I and those I claim to represent in this debate do not have a huge problem with homeowners keeping guns on hand to defend their lives and property, but there are downsides and I will mention only one. In my house we have a ‘panic button’. It’s an alarm system option where you can call for instantaneous help fully documented as to name, address, location, and etc., not to mention making a very loud noise, simply by pushing the button. It has a safety, so you have to mean to push it to be able to push it, like in the White House. While I was away on business, my wife was awakened by loud people noises that she thought were in our house. She sat bolt upright in bed and hollered, “WHO’S THERE!! GET OUT OF MY HOUSE!!”, and she flipped the release and hit the panic button. Well, all kinds of sh*t ensued, but the upshot is that there was nobody in the house. It was a bunch of drunks returning to their own apartment next door and still partying and making lots of noise. If my wife had had a gun by her bedside and been trained to use it I think it possible that she would have started firing it at the noises, even through the walls, and given the power of guns today, she might well have killed someone in the neighboring apartment. I prefer the panic button even if it embarrassed the hell out of her, and so does she.



    As to evacuating the school instead of a ‘lock down’, I agree completely that evacuation would have been better, but the poleeceye probly thought that would allow the perps to get away too, so whatarya gonna do? Six of one, half dozen of the other.



    Nobody wants to ‘deny others the right and ability to protect themselves’. I don’t anyway, and those I claim to represent in this debate don’t either. My problem is with people carrying their lethal weapon, gun based, protection devices around on their persons, in public, on the streets, on their hips, or whatever, like the old west, i.e. ‘Open Carry.’ THAT’S TOO DAMN DANGEROUS! Too many people would be like my wife. They’d panic in an otherwise benign situation, and they’d kill someone, like a child (to return to the point of the debate).



    You said the answer to gun violence is stricter enforcement of existing laws and stricter punishments for those who break them, but you also said the police were incapable, incompetent, or too overstretched. So who the hell is gonna do this marvelous ‘stricter enforcement’, I ask you? And what good is stricter punishment of the law breakers once they’ve killed somebody, like their ex-wife or some such, after, in most cases never having killed anybody before and not having a criminal record of any kind? That’s were a lot of the gun death occurs in this gun riddled society - in the loving arms of our homes and families, not in the liquor store holdups.



    But finally, for this response at least, you still haven’t explained how the ‘adults and teachers’ responsible for protecting children and others not able to protect themselves can provide that protection when the protectees are miles away from their protectors - you know, like out on the town going to the movies by themselves, or riding their bikes in the park, etc. etc. How do they protect them then? They don’t even know they’re in danger, and they couldn’t hit the perp with a bullet from wherever they are even if they did[/i] know about it (like a cell phone call from the kid or whatever).



    Over to you mcdonalk.

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    Our fathers made different choices, but I think they made the same mistake: They treated guns as something that should be kept from children. They both treated them as a dangerous influence that should be hidden away, or better yet not kept at all. I said what I did about my father not because I do not respect him- I do- but because I wanted to emphasize the fact that his choice impacted the safety of the other four people in the household. Beyond his assurances that the police would protect us, my family had little protection from any of the potential evils of the world.

    For the record, I am not saying that firearms are not dangerous. According to the CDC, 54 children (14 and under) were killed in 2006 due to accidental discharge of firearms. 285 children were murdered with guns. Although I believe that even one death is too many, I assert that the best way to reduce violence in society as a whole is education. Although there has not been much research into the subject, Lochner's 2004 paper with his "human capital approach" makes a strong argument that increasing the labor skills of workers makes the opportunity cost of crime higher (i.e. the more money they could potentially make working for a living, the less attractive the "life of crime" option looks). There is also evidence to support that inmates who devote significant time to personal education have lower rates of recidivism.

    The key to reducing accidental death is to introduce guns into a child's worldview in a controlled, safe way. Instead of hiding guns from children, teach them what to do if they find one. Teach them that they are dangerous, but teach them that they can be used safely under supervision. I'm not saying take a 4 year old to a firing range, but letting them handle an unloaded gun you give them, after you have taught them the 4 basic safety rules (especially that all guns are always loaded ), will safely satisfy their curiosity. I assert that it is much safer to teach a child early about firearm safety than to risk him or her stumbling upon a gun in your house, or at the house of a friend.

    To address your points:
    We, as a society, have to take responsibility for stricter enforcement of laws. We have to be willing to pay taxes to support our law enforcement, and to hold the legislature accountable for how those tax dollars are spent. Most importantly, we need to make sure the police have the resources they need to arrest and prosecute criminals, as well as the support from the citizens to report and deter crime. It is a two way street, and we have to stop relying on the government to do for us what we should be capable of doing for ourselves.

    If your children are old enough to be miles away from responsible adults, they are old enough to protect themselves. Teachers should be responsible for the children they educate. Parents should acknowledge a shared responsibility to watch out for each others' children. I assert that teachers should be allowed to be armed, especially in schools that can't afford armed guards and metal detectors. How else can they be expected to protect themselves and the children under their watch from those who would do them harm? When did we become a society where parents won't go armed to the public parks where their kids play because of social stigma? "It takes a village to raise a child" has no meaning in today's world. We are a society where many, if not most, people will look the other way if a situation does not directly involve them. The kind of society where nearly 70% of the 1,530 abuse related child fatalities in 2006 were caused by one or both parents.

    I am not trying to misdirect the focus of our discussion, but the sad fact of the matter is that more children die each year at the hands of their parents, than die from all shootings (accidental, murder, and suicide). We should be regulating parenting, not inanimate objects.

    I am curious to know how long it took the cops to "instantaneously" appear, and what your wife did in the meantime to protect herself from what she thought was a burglar. I am sorry for her embarrassment, but not as sorry as I would be if you were relating that the Panic button brought the cops there just in time to catch her murderer fleeing the scene.
    There was a time that the pieces fit, but I watched them fall away, mildewed and smoldering, strangled by our coveting. I've done the math enough to know the dangers of our second guessing. Doomed to crumble, unless we grow and strengthen our communication. -Tool, "Schism"

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    Starting from the bottom of your response and moving up, I can tell you that I don’t know how long it took the police to arrive on the scene after my wife pushed the panic button because I was away on a business trip. She told me that they arrived before she ‘came to her senses’ and realized that the noises weren’t coming from our apartment. It’s worth noting that the drunken neighbors were almost equally terrified by the loud noise that went off in our apartment as a result of the panic button and briefly wondered if they were in danger themselves. It is a fairly reasonable assumption that any actual intruder would have been unlikely to proceed to my wife’s bedroom, in the face of all that noise and the likelihood that the police were on the way, for the sole purpose of putting a bullet in her head or raping her in retaliation for pushing the panic button as a consequence of her hearing said intruder in her home. To put it in simpler terms, in a real intruder situation, I firmly to this day believe the panic button would have done the trick and we therefore had no need then and have no need now to keep a gun in the house.



    Regarding the causes of deaths of children, I provided verifiable statistics in another thread on this site that showed that the second leading cause of death for children ages 10 to 17 was violent gun death (i.e. they were shot and killed by somebody). That is second only to death in automobile accidents. I don’t know where you got your figures regarding ‘deaths at the hands of their parents’, unless you are including abortions or some such thing. If they didn’t shoot their kids what did they do, strangle them? Hit them with a baseball bat? Stick ‘em with a kitchen knife? Where do you get this stuff?



    At what age do you feel that a child is ‘old enough to be miles away from his or her parents’, like on a bicycle ride? I would say, maybe, seven or eight, and I am very reluctant to concede that seven or eight year olds should be allowed to pack a gun. I also think I stand amongst the majority in that opinion.



    I find little else but contradictions in your “We, as a society….” paragraph. First you say we should pay taxes to support law enforcement and ensure that police have resources to do the enforcing and then you say we should ‘stop relying on the government’, including presumably the police, to do what we should be doing for ourselves. Which is it? Or did you mean when you said we have to take responsibility for stricter enforcement of laws that we should do the enforcing ‘ourselves’ vigilante style?



    I do wholeheartedly agree that the best way to reduce violence in society is through education including that of prison inmates. I even think that education taken to an extreme might actually eliminate the need for guns, except of course for ‘need’ in the sense of the infamous gun fetish that so many of you suffer from.



    I advised eye95 in another thread that I was tempted to resign from this debate. I don’t really think it is going anywhere. I will, however, take away from it some resounding phrases to share with my friends and political cohorts such as:



    “Our fathers made the mistake[/i] (emphasis mine) of treating guns as something that should be kept from children,”….and, “They made the mistake[/i] of keeping guns hidden away, or better yet not kept at all,”…and, “The key to reducing accidental death is to introduce guns into a child’s worldview….,”….and, “letting a 4 year old handle an unloaded gun will safely satisfy their curiosity,”….and “..your father’s choice impacted the safety of the other four people in the house (though apparently not himself).” I think his decision did[/i] impact their safety. It improved it.



    You also said that beyond your father’s assurances that the police would protect you, your family had little protection from the potential evils of the world, and then later asserted that we need to make sure the police have the resources to arrest and prosecute criminals, but also[/i] to stop relying on them to do for us what we should do for ourselves.



    I’m lost. I can’t keep up. I give up. Goodbye.

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    Well, swine seems to have made his final remark. So, mcdonalk, if you will sum up, we can throw this thread open to post mortem.

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    Regular Member Brimstone Baritone's Avatar
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    I knew I should have waited till tomorrow to check this thread... Oh, well. Here goes. For the record, I feel the text format I am about to use is poor form for this sort of debate, but since it is my last post (and 1 o'clock in the morning here) I hope you will excuse me not wanting to miss any points.

    swine wrote:
    Starting from the bottom of your response and moving up, I can tell you that I don’t know how long it took the police to arrive on the scene after my wife pushed the panic button because I was away on a business trip. She told me that they arrived before she ‘came to her senses’ and realized that the noises weren’t coming from our apartment. It’s worth noting that the drunken neighbors were almost equally terrified by the loud noise that went off in our apartment as a result of the panic button and briefly wondered if they were in danger themselves. It is a fairly reasonable assumption that any actual intruder would have been unlikely to proceed to my wife’s bedroom, in the face of all that noise and the likelihood that the police were on the way, for the sole purpose of putting a bullet in her head or raping her in retaliation for pushing the panic button as a consequence of her hearing said intruder in her home. To put it in simpler terms, in a real intruder situation, I firmly to this day believe the panic button would have done the trick and we therefore had no need then and have no need now to keep a gun in the house.
    You didn't answer what your wife did after hitting the button. Are you comfortable with the fact that your wife may have been cowering in fear, defenseless because of your reliance on the police to protect your family? If you truly feel that you have no need for a weapon because you have the police on speed-dial then I truly hope you never have cause to regret that choice. It seems we will remain at an impasse in this case. At least we agree that keeping a weapon in the home should be a personal choice and not mandated or restricted by the government.

    Regarding the causes of deaths of children, I provided verifiable statistics in another thread on this site that showed that the second leading cause of death for children ages 10 to 17 was violent gun death (i.e. they were shot and killed by somebody). That is second only to death in automobile accidents. I don’t know where you got your figures regarding ‘deaths at the hands of their parents’, unless you are including abortions or some such thing. If they didn’t shoot their kids what did they do, strangle them? Hit them with a baseball bat? Stick ‘em with a kitchen knife? Where do you get this stuff?

    I don't even know where to start with this one. My statistics were verifiable. I cited my source as the CDC, although some of it was second hand from sudden valley gunner's essay. My statistics do not conflict with yours, as 1) They are for a completely different age range and 2) I thought I was pretty clear that I was discussing the separate issue of abuse related deaths as a comparison to firearm related deaths. Even if you substitute automobile related death for abuse related death, it is clear that the biggest danger to children of any age are the reckless, negligent, or intentionally harmful actions of others whether or not guns are involved. I see here that you are starting to loose your ability to rationally discuss the issue...

    At what age do you feel that a child is ‘old enough to be miles away from his or her parents’, like on a bicycle ride? I would say, maybe, seven or eight, and I am very reluctant to concede that seven or eight year olds should be allowed to pack a gun. I also think I stand amongst the majority in that opinion.

    Whoah, buddy. You said 'protectors' which I argued means 'responsible adults'. If we operate under your assumption of "every family for itself" where 'protector' only means parents, then that changes things significantly in my favor. Letting an 8-year-old child ride a bike on public streets "miles away" from home without adult (or, to satisfy your restrictions, parental) supervision, is something I hope I never do. In the same argument you imply that parents are the only ones with a duty to protect their children, and yet you assert that there is an age where they are old enough to be away from those protectors while not yet old enough to have the means to protect themselves? Being in the majority doesn't always make you in the right. There is a 6-year-old child out there with more firearms training and range time under their belts than most cops. I can show you several YouTube videos of police officers who shouldn't be allowed to 'pack' a gun, and yet you assert that being a child automatically makes you more irresponsible than, say, a cop who can't tell the difference between their taser and their sidearm.

    I find little else but contradictions in your “We, as a society….” paragraph. First you say we should pay taxes to support law enforcement and ensure that police have resources to do the enforcing and then you say we should ‘stop relying on the government’, including presumably the police, to do what we should be doing for ourselves. Which is it? Or did you mean when you said we have to take responsibility for stricter enforcement of laws that we should do the enforcing ‘ourselves’ vigilante style?

    You find only what you expected to find. We, as a society, should support out police with taxes, by reporting crimes, and by generally obeying the law. We should also make their jobs easier by being willing and able to deter crime, keep ourselves from becoming victims, and making the potential loss of life and limb a real possibility to those who would pursue a life of crime. I see no contradiction in those beliefs. Are you also the type of person who believes only criminals assert their rights against search and seizure or to remain silent? As for the 'vigilante' style, defense and revenge have little in common. A man who hunts down and executes a criminal, whatever his reasons, should be charged with murder. By 'stricter enforcement of laws' I meant that criminals should be sentenced in ways that reduce repeat offenses. Sentences should be upheld so that criminals know that they will have to face full punishment for their actions. None of this, however, is within our power to directly control. It seems to be a function of our justice system.

    I do wholeheartedly agree that the best way to reduce violence in society is through education including that of prison inmates. I even think that education taken to an extreme might actually eliminate the need for guns, except of course for ‘need’ in the sense of the infamous gun fetish that so many of you suffer from.

    I thought we might be on the verge of agreeing on something, until I read that last sentence. Either you purposefully meant insult or you made an unsupported claim that the majority of gun owners are sexually deviant. Either way, your statement contributes nothing useful to the discussion. Poor form, and something we have, sadly, come to expect in these sorts of discussion.

    I advised eye95 in another thread that I was tempted to resign from this debate. I don’t really think it is going anywhere. I will, however, take away from it some resounding phrases to share with my friends and political cohorts such as:
    Our fathers made the mistake (emphasis mine) of treating guns as something that should be kept from children,”….and, “They made the mistake of keeping guns hidden away, or better yet not kept at all,”…and, “The key to reducing accidental death is to introduce guns into a child’s worldview….,”….and, “letting a 4 year old handle an unloaded gun will safely satisfy their curiosity,”….and “..your father’s choice impacted the safety of the other four people in the house (though apparently not himself).” I think his decision did impact their safety. It improved it.
    If you are going to use my words incompletely and out of context, then I can't stop you. I wouldn't even try. By ignoring the points of my arguments and focusing only on making the most inflammatory statements possible, you show everyone a glimpse of your true character. You say 'political cohorts' and I can easily imagine you as a politician. No, that wasn't a compliment.

    You also said that beyond your father’s assurances that the police would protect you, your family had little protection from the potential evils of the world, and then later asserted that we need to make sure the police have the resources to arrest and prosecute criminals, but also to stop relying on them to do for us what we should do for ourselves.

    I say again that the police should be supported in their job, which is arresting and prosecuting criminals. We should stop relying on them for things we should do ourselves. What is contradictory about that? The SCOTUS has ruled that a cop has absolutely no duty whatsoever to be responsible for our safety! What will your wife do if next time she hits the panic button, our overstretched police force can't spare someone to come out? No one is responsible for your safety but you. Until your learn to accept this fact, everything else we say will be gibberish to you. And before you come back just to point out an 'inconsistency' between what I just said and what I said earlier about 'responsible adults' protecting our children, I need you to realize that the self defense is legal responsibility, the protection of children and others is a moral one.


    I’m lost. I can’t keep up. I give up. Goodbye.

    I'm sorry if the debate didn't meet your expectations. From a personal standpoint, you did little to influence my view on the issues. I am, however, open to further discussion with anyone else. I'll even try to argue the 'anti' point of view if anyone thinks we could gain some insight from another discussion. Goodbye, swine. I wish you well.

    If eye95 agrees that this debate is over, I would like to open this thread to comments and criticism of the debate itself. Please try to keep the tensions from the other thread in the other thread. I have a genuine interest in hearing what I did well, and what I could have done better.
    There was a time that the pieces fit, but I watched them fall away, mildewed and smoldering, strangled by our coveting. I've done the math enough to know the dangers of our second guessing. Doomed to crumble, unless we grow and strengthen our communication. -Tool, "Schism"

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    Thank you, mcdonalk and swine. The debate is over. Folks, feel free to join in on the post mortem.

    I will edit the first post to remove our request not to post here. I hope Mike or John can remove the thread description asking for cooperation in not posting in the middle of the debate.

    Thanks again to all. We appreciate your respecting our request that you not post.

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    Regular Member hopnpop's Avatar
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    Well, that ended much quicker than anticipated. Swine, swine, swine.... such narrow-mindedness. I was enjoying the debate until I read the line about "the gun fetish you all suffer from" - then the debate was being drowned out by my hatred toward you. ...No need for guns except to satisfy our fetishes, huh? Self-defense aside, did you forget that shooting is a sport? And that hunting is a sport and a mean of providing for families? And that shooting and gunsmithing are hobbies and even incomes? Firearms have more uses than just self-defense.I also think that the teaching of firearm safety and hunting are bothexcellent bonding experiences between fathers and sons (or daughters, in my case).

    Personally I'd never have a home without at least one firearm for defense. I don't think there's a single better substitute for self defense than a firearm in a trained individual's hands. It's a fact that therehave beennumerous instances where deadly forcewas needed to stop an attack and nothing short of deadly force would have sufficed. I'd much rather have to deal with the emotional and mental aftermath of my daughter taking the life of someone intent on raping or murdering her, than the aftermath of her having been raped or killed. That, to me, is a no-brainer. And the daughter to which I refer is almost 14 yrs old. She's certainly old enough and responsible enough to be trusted with a firearm. I cannot say that about her two younger sisters. I also accept that the same can't be said for many 14 yr olds. Know your kids. Soon I'll be breaching the subject of shooting in defense with her. If we deem that she would be willing and able to shoot in defense of her life or the lives of her sisters, I will spend plenty of time training her and if all goes well, I will make a firearm accessible to her. As it is now, none of the kids can access any gun+ammo combinations.

    I, too, took my dad's pistol to school once, and for the same reason. I was being bullied and wanted to show them that they shouldn't f*ck with me. Luckily I had the presence of mind not to brandish it and the only one who saw it was my best friend, wholoyally kept his mouth shut. I never brought the gun to school again, but carried a knife on me daily. I think the only reason that I was stupid enough to take the gun to school was because my dad didn't spend much time stressing the seriousness of the gun itself or the ramifications of using it. I knew, of course, that it was a deadly weapon. But at that age, I didn't havethe properappreciation for life itself or the maturity to have much good judgement. Having both kids and guns in my home, even though inaccessible, these topics have been addressed and will continue to be addressed.

    Another thing... SWINE said: "If my wife had had a gun by her bedside and been trained to use it I think it possible that she would have started firing it at the noises, even through the walls, and given the power of guns today, she might well have killed someone in the neighboring apartment."

    Sorry but if that's the case, your wife would be absoutely irresponsible, reckless, and quite simply, ignorant. If she would have shot a gun, through a wall, at noises, without identifying a target/threat... she wouldn't have been properly trained. Worse yet, an idiot who wasn't properly trained. Anyone with proper training would not have done what you indicated she might have done. Even not being a gun owner, you should know not to shoot through walls at an unknown threat. I'll be the first to say that if that's how you think your wife would have reacted, then I concur that you shouldn't have a gun in your home.

    ...and letting your 7 or 8 yr old go on bike rides miles away? In today's society? You've got a lot more faith than I do. I understand that location would have a lot to do with it, but even me, in my small town rural setting, there's no way I'd let my 8 yr old or even my 10 yr old ride miles from protection. Many would consider me strict but I'd rather be strict than greiving. I think most parents are too lax in regards to their kids. Lax in their punishments, lax in enforcement, lax in parenting. I may be strict but just when I start thinking I might be too strict, I recieve compliments from strangers at restaurants and events about how well-behaved and well-mannered my kids are. That's because I don't let them run amockand don'tjust give slaps on the wrist when they screw up. It's more difficult to be an involved parent but it pays off.
    No one has ever walked away from a gunfight complaining that he brought too much ammo.

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    hopnpop wrote:
    ...Sorry but if that's the case, your wife would be absoutely irresponsible, reckless, and quite simply, ignorant. If she would have shot a gun, through a wall, at noises, without identifying a target/threat... she wouldn't have been properly trained...
    Piggybacking on what you are saying...

    This, of course, would be a human failing, not a failure on the part of the gun or of the RKBA. People have to take responsibility for their actions. When one chooses to exercise the RKBA (you don't have to), she should ensure that she is properly trained. When one exercised the right to self-defense, she should ensure that she is, in fact, defending herself and that she is doing so in a way that provides defense while minimizing the probability of harm to others.

    In the scenario given, she was neither trained nor careful. That is the problem, not the gun.

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Parents do kill their children more than guns do by abuse or neglect why would the specific way they killed their children matter? It is a fact that the number of kids under 12 who die by the hands of their parents from neglect or abuse are expendentially higher than those who die from guns. If parents did use a gun to kill their children it is a very small percentage of the deaths.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    While I did not read the majority of the posts, from what I can gather the debate concerned having a gun in the home with children.

    I purchased my firearm when my children were young, and when I brought it home I made sure to show the the pistol and explain to them that it is NOT a toy and that they should NEVER play with a gun. I showed them a bullet, and tapped the bullet on the back of their hand (just enough to show it would hurt) and explained to them that the bullet would come out of the gun much harder than that. They understood that it is not a toy, and by showing them I had one they would not have the facination factor if they found it on their own. Should you choose to have a gun in the home, you need to educateany children to the devistating power of a firearm. Dont let it become a discovery.
    What part of "shall not be infringed" don't you understand?

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    I will fully read the debate when at home.
    What part of "shall not be infringed" don't you understand?

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    Regular Member hopnpop's Avatar
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    eye95 wrote:
    In the scenario given, she was neither trained nor careful. That is the problem, not the gun.
    Agreed, 100%

    No one has ever walked away from a gunfight complaining that he brought too much ammo.

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    Regular Member hopnpop's Avatar
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    Actually the debate focused on merely having a gun in the home (vs. alarm system and police response), and brushed against the issue of teaching and arming kids.
    No one has ever walked away from a gunfight complaining that he brought too much ammo.

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    I was hoping for a better argument from swine's side. When such a good argument was dismantled with ration, this thread would've shined like a beacon. Alas, it was not to be.

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    If you are going to read the debate, you need to read his first couple of posts from Mr. Swine. I think you will quickly see that his intention was to just go around in circles. In the end, he is just another one who has built up his own mental defense mechanisms so he doesn't need to own his own feelings and fears. A good case for a pshycyatrist and asadpuppet for the Brady Bunch, or whoever pulls his strings.



    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/view_to...730374#p730374

    The words of Swine:

    "This incident raises the question -> what about the children? We can arm ourselves for self protection as adults, but kids are vulnerable to crime as well. We could well have a rash of child kidnappings for ransom in this country like they do in Mexico, not to mention the sexual predators out there. Once everybody is properly armed, law abiders and criminals alike (assuming they have no record), who will protect the children, or do we arm them too?"

    Notice how none ofhis efforts described who will protect the children riding their bikes 8 miles away from home from the kidnappers and sexual predators? Was he going to let them carry his poison dart gun bouncing around in their baggy shorts? Was his panic button going to bring the police instantaneously to his child's location?

    "My concern is this: Once two hundred and fifty or so million U.S. citizens are packing all day long, including little old blue haired ladies on walkers, WHO'S GOING TO PROTECT THE EFFING CHILDREN, while they're, for example, out riding their bikies on a fine summer's day?

    In the city where I live (San Francisco) little kids routinely get shot in the head from the crossfire from the gangbangers having shootouts with one another as a slightly less boring alternative to playing video games. Unless you're going to put every child on a leash until (s)he's old enough to start packing herself, our future generations will be in mortal danger. Maybe that's a good thing. Fewer kids, fewer gun owners."

    Here we see thesigns of a desperate fear monger. An all caps demand to know who is going to protect the effing children while out riding their bikes. We also see the illogical relationship introduced to gang violence. It's pretty tough to relate the huge numberof murders that take place in a very small number of gang neighborhoods, with the other >90%of the country. It's in this rest of the country where the overwhelming majority of the people are at danger from robbery, car jack, rape, murder, etcby cowardlypredator criminals.Moral of the gang banger story, stay away from crack houses swine.

    When asked for evidence of these assertions, none was provided. Surprised?

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    Regular Member Brimstone Baritone's Avatar
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    Personally I'm glad the debate never really got to the topic of Open Carry. Seeing as how I believe that open carry is the correct and proper way to carry, and that concealed carry should be illegal (I know, I know. Shall not be infringed) I was ill equipped to address points that CC would be just as effective.

    I tried not to focus so much on the issue of guns and children itself, but rather the ways to reduce accidental, negligent, and purposeful firearm-related death of children. What do you think I could have done better?
    There was a time that the pieces fit, but I watched them fall away, mildewed and smoldering, strangled by our coveting. I've done the math enough to know the dangers of our second guessing. Doomed to crumble, unless we grow and strengthen our communication. -Tool, "Schism"

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    He bailed as things were getting warmed up. Dang I was hoping this would be a good one.

    And I too have a strong stance against concealed carry.

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    Ok, so I'm sneaking back to the scene of the crime. I chose to reply to an eye95 post because he was the moderator of the defunct debate. I only want to say to those who didn't understand it that the debate I intended to participate in was whetherunanimous open carrying of firearms by all able bodied adults over the age of ___ (fill in the blanks yourself) would leave children under that age (and therefore NOT carrying) without the same protection as the adults. I still believe that would be the case. I would hate to have grown up inMcDonalk's current time when he can't let hiseight year old kids out of his sight for a minute. I used to ride my bike freely around the city I grew up in atthat age and my folks didn't even know where I was until I arrived back home and they happened to ask me. What a world if kids can't do that anymore. They've gotcell phones of course so maybe it's not that bad, but still.

    The picture that bothers me thatdrew meinto the now defunct debate was the picture of every adultAmerican having an unconcealed firearm strapped to his or her belt or purse walking around looking for trouble that might or might not come, with their children up to the age of legal open carry being kept onthose curley leashes or the ones that roll up into the holder like they use with dogs these days. What a world. If y'all want that world, you can have it. Fortunately at my age (68) I will probablybe long gone before it comes to that.

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    you just keep going, and going, and going!
    honestly,, you, and your ideas, just dont even start to make any sense.
    i wish the world was a simpler place, like i remember it being when i was a kid.
    its a different world now, for everybody.
    being older, and set in your ways makes keeping up with the way changes are taking place,
    shall we say,,, difficult !!
    EMNofSeattle wrote: Your idea of freedom terrifies me. So you are actually right. I am perfectly happy with what you call tyranny.....

    If ever a time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.

    Stand up for your Rights,, They have no authority on their own...

    All power is inherent in the people,
    it is their right and duty to be at all times ARMED!

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