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#956369 - Wed Dec 19 2012 02:54 PM Re: Latest school shooting [Re: flopsymopsy]
Jakeroo Offline
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Registered: Sat Aug 30 2008
Posts: 1960
Loc: Alberta Canada
Why? Not sure, but the Second Amendment to the US Constitution makes no specifications as to the type of firearm. And in fact, the Brits have similar legal wording from 1688 which says "Subjects which are Protestants may have Arms for their Defense". That was revised over time of course lol.

just a few examples of other countries that have a related law?
Mexico
"Article 10. The inhabitants of the United Mexican States have the right to possess arms within their domicile, for their safety and legitimate defense, except those forbidden by Federal Law and those reserved for the exclusive use of the Army, Militia, Air Force and National Guard. Federal law shall provide in what cases, conditions, under what requirements and in which places inhabitants shall be authorized to bear arms."[

Canada (although we don't have a "legal" right to have firearms, it's certainly not illegal to buy one)

Cuba: Chapter 1, Article 3 of the Constitution of Cuba states the following: "When no other recourse is possible, all citizens have the right to struggle through all means, including armed struggle, against anyone who tries to overthrow the political, social and economic order established in this Constitution."

North Korea: Chapter IV, Article 60 of the Socialist Constitution of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea) "The State shall implement the line of self-reliant defence, the import of which is to arm the entire people, fortify the country, train the army into a cadre army and modernize the army on the basis of equipping the army and the people politically and ideologically

Under Sharia law, there is an intrinsic freedom to own arms.

Switzerland: Under Swiss law, all adult males who have received training in the Swiss armed forces are reservists who are required under law to keep their official firearms at home. According to the gun law of 1999 (larm99), automatic weapons like the Swiss army assault rifle have to be stocked separately of the bolt, which has to be in a locked place. Interestingly, Switzerland has one of the lowest crime rates in the world, and one of the highest gun ownership rates in the world.

I'm inclined to think that gun violence is more about "cultural attitude" (as agony stated) rather than laws or the number of guns owned per capita. I sincerely doubt that changing the constitution of the US will have any effect regarding drug lords etc using automatic weapons to get what they want. And don't be so quick to dismiss Mehaul's comments. I'm not a believer in conspiracy theories, but it's been quite obvious that more than a few "wackos" have slipped through the cracks of psych practitioners, the FBI and the Homeland Security system that is costing US taxpayers an enormous amount of money LOL. I'm also inclined to think that the "media" needs to go away. There are too many reporters regurgitating really stupid comments. And yes please, let's not post the name of the shooter and who cares what his/her reasons are? Whatever they are, they're clearly not what a sane person would think. Absolutely no need to "glorify" them.


Edited by Jakeroo (Wed Dec 19 2012 03:25 PM)
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#956373 - Wed Dec 19 2012 03:25 PM Re: Latest school shooting [Re: Jakeroo]
flopsymopsy Offline
Moderator

Registered: Sat May 17 2008
Posts: 2832
Loc: Northampton England UK      
As you rightly say, we had laws about bearing arms but we have revised them with the passage of time and with changing circumstances. When the USA's Second Amendment was phrased, no one knew about automatic or assault weapons. They envisaged a world of muskets, where the charge was loaded down the barrel with a rod, and gunpowder ignited in the flash pan. Then the barrel would be cleared, another musketball loaded, and gunpowder ignited. (Not necessarily in that order!) It was not a quick process but everyone was slow to the same extent. But while guns have changed beyond all recognition, the USA has kept the same law, has interpreted it as meaning that anyone could own any weapon, and many have fought to keep it as though it was unchangeable and inalienable even though the people who've died because of it are Americans.

As you say, the Swiss have high gun ownership because of their military obligations to repel invaders but they are trained to use those weapons and are required to keep them secure. As British holders of guns are required to do. The Mexicans have put a caveat into their law about federal provisions, Cuban law is presumably designed for action against the USA if they get invaded, and I refuse to consider North Korea as being an example of anything except governmental lunacy, lol.

It's interesting that if you look at the rates of gun homicide around the world, the USA isn't the worst but almost all the countries that are worse include violent South American states associated with drugs, and South Africa, which is known to have terrible problems of its own. It's not a grouping of countries I'd like my country to be associated with.
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#956405 - Wed Dec 19 2012 07:00 PM Re: Latest school shooting [Re: flopsymopsy]
Christinap Offline
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Registered: Sun Jul 27 2008
Posts: 1641
Loc: Essex UK
Living in a rural area we have a gun in the house, a rifle. It is used for rodent control - an ongoing problem when you are surrounded by fields, and pigeon shooting, the local farmers often ask local gun owners to help them with pigeon control. In exchange we get the odd haunch of venison or a brace of pheasant. My husband has had a gun licence for over 30 years. Even then it was not easy to get. Two references were required, and they were checked up on. The proposed location of the gun cabinet and security thereof were checked by the Police before it was installed and again afterwards. The ammunition is kept separately, again in a secure location. Both are out of sight and would not be accesible to burglars, the Police were very clear about making sure it could not fall into the wrong hands if something happened. Every year the Police come round and inspect our gun cabinet to ensure that it is secure. The licence is checked against the actual gun to ensure they match, it isn't for just any old rifle, it is for one specific rifle. Change the gun you have to take the licence into the Police to get it amended. Although not a requirement we keep a log of when the rifle is used, and again the Police do look at this when they come round, and there hasn't been a single year when they havn't come round to check everything is in order. Ammunitions sales are reported to the Police by the local gun shops, so any out of the ordinary, extra to normal purchases by us or anyone else would be spotted and, hopefully, checked out and acted on.

If we were to have a burglary or something there is no way the gun would be taken out and used. Even if the thought crossed either of our minds by the time everything was unlocked and the gun loaded the burglars would be long gone. No, far more likely to defend ourselves with a cricket bat or kichen knife.

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#956897 - Sat Dec 22 2012 05:58 AM Re: Latest school shooting [Re: Christinap]
dg_dave Offline
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Registered: Sun Oct 05 2003
Posts: 19978
Loc: Dallas TX USA                 
Maybe this story can shed some light as well. If it weren't for proper training, two young people could have been dead.
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#956900 - Sat Dec 22 2012 07:23 AM Re: Latest school shooting [Re: dg_dave]
supersal1 Offline
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Registered: Sat Jul 17 2004
Posts: 702
Loc: Essex UK
Originally Posted By: dg_dave
Maybe this story can shed some light as well. If it weren't for proper training, two young people could have been dead.


Yes, but on the other hand the events in Connecticut rather proved that a teenager having access to their parent's weapons is not such a great idea.

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#956923 - Sat Dec 22 2012 09:48 AM Re: Latest school shooting [Re: supersal1]
agony Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 11896
Loc: Western Canada
Proper training can sometimes be a lifesaver, but it's not some magic answer. It's not at all unusual for police to be killed in the line of duty - armed, trained, and usually alert.

Any idea that if we just change one thing the problem will go away is, in my opinion, misguided. Instead, reasonable and sane action on several fronts will help, but not not solve, the problem. To do nothing because any one action isn't the complete answer is fool-hardy, though, I think

We do have some useful data that can guide the public dialogue. Many countries have some form of gun control - it would seem obvious to track what has happened there, and learn what does and does not work. We also know something about what can happen when there is a gun in a household - while by no means is there injury in every armed household, if someone IS injured, the chances are much higher that it will be a member of the household, not some intruder or enemy.

The idea from the NRA yesterday about armed guards at every school strikes me as the height of folly. There are not unlimited funds for this, so who would be hired? Poorly trained and poorly vetted individuals, especially in poorer districts. As a parent, I do not find the idea of the kind of person who would be attracted to strutting around a school with a gun on his hip reassuring. What happened in Connecticut is appalling, but it doesn't change the reality that most children are not harmed by a crazed stranger, but by someone close to them with some authority over them. I'd personally be a lot more afraid of those guards, looking at it statistically.

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