Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Gun Nuts Exposed at Distorting Data and Results

In the latest Econ Journal Watch, just out, Ian Ayres and John J. Donohue III have a paper, "Yet another refutation of the more guns, less crime hypothesis - with some help from Moody and Marvell" accessible (hopefully) at http://www.aier.org/ejw/archive/comments/doc_view/4018-ejw-200901?tmpi=component&format=raw.

Besides recounting how the major study by John Lott and Mustard has lots of data problems and cut off just before the post-1992 crime decline, they focus on a paper by Moody and Marvell that claims that a study of 24 states showed a reduction in crime for increasing access to guns. It turns out that in this study 23 of the 24 states had the opposite result, and the aggregate result was solely due to Florida. However, the data in Florida is all messed up and also probably caught a general crime wave decline due to a regression to the mean after the Mariel boat landings from Cuba in the early 1980s. I am not doing their paper justice, but the media discussion is often dominated by Lott and his allies who are now pushing for loosened gun laws in Virginia, and are counting on Dems laying low and not challenging their incessantly repeated claims that such gun law relaxations reduce crime. They should not lay low. The claims are baloney and lies, based on distorted date and misrepresentations of results from ones with better data.

116 comments:

Anonymous said...

With a title like "Yet another refutation of the more guns, less crime hypothesis - with some help from Moody and Marvell", it's pretty clear the authors had just as much of an agenda as those they tried to refute.

ydue said...

or, maybe it was called that because that was what it was. just a thought.

Shag from Brookline said...

For those interested, take a look at Prof. Nelson Lund's (George Mason Univ. School of Law) "The Second Amendment, Heller, and Originalist Jurisprudence" available via SSRN:

http://ssrn.com/abstract_id_1324757

While Lund supports the basic decision in Heller (personal right, including self defense), he takes to task Justice Scalia for his failure to stick faithfully to originalism principles (however defined) with Scalia's suggestions of potential appropriate limitations upon the right to carry and bear arms. It is not clear whether Prof. Lund prefers an unfettered Second Amendment right but his criticism points to some of the problems with originalism. Perhaps we should all strap 'em on, in self defense, of course.

Anonymous said...

So let's suppose Lott is wrong. Is this justification to ban gun ownership? What's your point?

Anonymous said...

"So let's suppose Lott is wrong. Is this justification to ban gun ownership? What's your point?"

That's not the point, ding dong. The point is that the gun nuts are liars and cooking the books.

weinerdog43

Bruce Webb said...

This kind of fits in well with the ongoing discussions at Thoma and DeLong about the tendency for certain economists to argue backwards from their conclusions, that is to be advocates rather than pure analysts. Mankiw in particular comes in for some rough handling, in this case with a quote from Krugman:
And you’ve got Greg Mankiw — well, I don’t know what Greg actually believes, he just seems to be approvingly linking to anyone opposed to stimulus, regardless of the quality of their argument.

Goal oriented argumentation is not limited to Right economists and gun nuts, the Left is certainly not immune. But as a whole the Left's goals are normally rooted in some sort of pragmatic 'greatest good for greatest number' outcome while the Right's goals tend to be more targeted to selected groups, putting their arguments at a structural disadvantage in a democratic society. Which of course has led to such things as Caplan's "Myth of the Rational Voter". If people don't understand Right economic arguments simply take away their right to vote. The Gordian Knot solution.

Mencius Moldbug said...

Professor Rosser,

Does the name "Michael Mann" ring a bell for you? No, not the Mann who gave us "Miami Vice." What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander...

Anonymous said...

1) To say that support for gun rights is a Right (vs Left) issue is incorrect. The issue is of civil liberties. In this case, as in many others, support of basic constitutional liberties is fragmented between traditional R/L dichotomy. Are you more concerned about certain aspects of free speech? Become a Democrat. More concerned about gun rights? Become a Republican. Same with religion, states rights, etc. These days some are "conservative" issues and some are "liberal" issues. All were just American issues when the Bill of Rights was written.

2) Is there any non-economist left who still trusts the economic profession to take large collections of disparate data, arranged into complex statistical models, in poorly controlled (ie non-randomized placebo controlled, etc) studies and arrive at a reliable conclusion?

Bruce Webb said...

Mencius what is your point?

There is a difference between getting a result wrong and deliberately lying. The blog you link to does not nearly prove the latter point, and certainly doesn't by simple reference by you.

In any event I fail to see how a dispute over climate change translates into some general claim of hypocrisy along the lines 'another guy who could be described as a leftist did the same thing in a different context'.

So what? Former Democratic Congressman William Jefferson is likely to be convicted on something. As is Democratic Governor Blago. That doesn't mean we can wave away the many more cases of official Republican criminality proven over the last couple of years.

Frankly this is a standard argument from the right. Democrats and Leftists are collectively responsible for everything Sistah Souljah or Ward Churchill ever said. Or some guy named Mann's perhaps failure in research. But the Right is never held to that same standard. They never accept responsibility for proven lies by Coulter, Limbaugh or O'Reilly. Instead they just simper and say 'that's just entertainment'. Well I am sorry if Clinton was held personally responsible for something said by a rap singer everyone on the Right is collectively responsible for letting liars be their front people.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

anonymous,

I am not against what I would consider reasonable rights for people to own guns. I live in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia where lots of people have gun racks on their pickup trucks with rifles or other long guns of some sort on them. I have no problem with this, and I have no problem with hunting, indeed, recognize that with too few predators around, hunting is needed to avoid ecolgical catastrophes from overeating by deer, and so forth.

I am also not against people having guns for self-defense, although I am aware that in way too many cases these "guns for self-defense" end up getting used by their owners on themselves. Some time ago I posted here on the question of suicide, and the data is overwhelming that states with the most guns per capita have the most suicides per capita and vice versa, and suicide deaths in this country are huge. I posted this after the awful decision (in my view) by the Supreme Court to overturn the law against handguns in D.C., which has had the lowest suicide rate in the country.

Personally I had been reasonably open to the idea, based on Lott's and other studies, that crime rates had gone down in states with laws allowing concealed weapons to be carried. This has become a hot issue here in Virginia, especially as a result of the VA Tech shooting, with a lot of the Lott folks saying that the massacre would not have happened if rules against carrying guns on campuses were not in place.

Now, I see this study that seriously challenges the underpinnings of those arguments, and so I am now more inclined to go with my older prejudices, which are in favor of limits on handguns, concealed weapons, guns on campuses or churches or bars, or most public places, with strict limits on availability and multiple checks and all that. I am not for taking anybody's gun(s) away from them.

My prejudice is due to the fact that a half uncle of mine died in an accident at age ten from a family owned gun.

BTW, if anonymous is John Lott, I will simply remind him and everybody else, that while I am open to studies by him on solidly based data, I do have a broader problem with his general approach to discourse for two reasons: a) his infamous sock puppet episode, and b) his suing Steve Levitt. I have nothing but contempt for such conduct.

Mencius the G.B.,

Um, neither of these authors is Michael Mann. So then, what is the point?

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

Mencius,

Just for the record, I have been well aware from Day One of the details of the infamous hockey stick episode. I have been a friend of Patrick J. Michaels for over 30 years.

Anonymous said...

Ok, so the main point of the article (from my brief skim) is that not taking into account the post-1992 crime drop makes the RTC studies bunk. I presume the assumption is that with the election of Bill Clinton and the "assault rifle" bans, which, according to Wikipedia, wasn't effective until 1994, are the cause of the crime drop. How could a bill that would not be effective for 2 more years retroactively cause a crime drop?

I thought the authors of Freakonomics came up with an alternative explanation for the crime drop - the legalization of abortion. Am I missing something here? If abortion is the explanation, then the studies would have to leave out the post-1992 crime drop, because it was caused by something else.

Donald W. said...

I wonder if the person/persons writing this article would have said the same thing about Roe vs Wade

Anonymous said...

Let ME spell this out for anyone who thinks that owning guns is a result of being nuts, delusional, or flat-out stupid.

Only a free people can own guns with reasonable curbs on their ownership. Only a suppressed people can own guns if they are part of the elite.

Those of you that blanket-malign law abiding gun owners because it does not agree with your idea of utopia are so deeply ignorant of what it means to have liberty that I think you deserve none of it.

One day if and when you get your wish for disarming law abiding gun owners you or your children will BEG for those same terrible gun owners you so malign today to fight to preserve your and children's last vestiges of freedom. A populace without means to defend itself from those in power become nothing more than slaves and subjects.

You can choose what type of lifestyles you want for yourselves. But don't think for a second we will allow you to choose our's as well. That is what liberty and the pursuit of happiness is all about - not what you want for my life but what I want for my life which is to be free and trusted enough to be a law abiding yet armed citizen.

AM

whitetower said...

By "gun nuts" I suppose you mean the savage criminals who pillage and murder, and not decent law-abiding Americans who simply wish to protect themselves from said savages.

/sarcasm off

Anonymous said...

Those who give up freedom for a little security deserves neither.....now who am I quoting?.....
Now I suppose that it could be said in another way, that if one gives up his/her right to bear arms deserves no freedom.

Barkley Rosser said...

AM and the Rest of the Gun Nuts writing here,

I am perfectly open to their being multiple causes for the crime rate decline of the 1990s. It does not have to be this or that or the other thing, but several of them. The point of the A and D paper is that the cutoff in Lott's data makes it much weaker for making the kinds of claims made on the basis of it, quite aside from all the more detailed difficulties with it. Of course, the main object of the paper was the paper by M and M, not Lott's stuff.

As for all this hysterical firebreathing, Canada is a plenty free country. Nobody is in any danger of becoming enslaved there. Very nice country and plenty sane, without gun nuts pushing provincial legislatures to let them carry their concealed weapons onto campuses and into churches and bars and so forth. Nobody is talking about taking guns away fromm people who have them, and I said so, but you folks cannot accept what people say and have to impute all kinds of things to them that they did not say. That is why I consider people who come out with the lies that you do to be what I called you.

Barkley Rosser said...

Oh, and Mencius, the G.B. Did you not mean to imply by bringing up Michael Mann that A and D have exposed M and M to be like him and his folks pushing not-quite-there hockey sticks? Or did you mean to imply the other way around? I think you meant the other way around, but in fact, this is the study that is the equivalent of the one that exposed the problems with the hockey stick paper. Or did you not figure that out?

I am so unsurprised that exposing what crap their studies are brings this gang out in full drooling frenzy.

Anonymous said...

Barkley Rosser..........

You're a dangerous fool at best and likely a communist utopian at worst which in MY book qualifies you as quite possibly the true nut in this particular case. But I digress.

Secondly, anyone that aspires to have enough intellect in their argument to lucidly dissect Lott's premise by blanket calling gun owners 'gun nuts' has already defacto lost the debate. Nonetheless I seriously doubt you have the intellectual horsepower to truly understand what I just told you because obviously you are an inherent self-centered myopic and thus resort to name-calling to support your inferior and defective thinking. Now I can say all this about YOU because I am responding specifically to your attack in general on all gun owners. The nuanced difference being that I do not call ALL who disagree with Mr. Lott fools.

Again, when your liberties are taken away some day to write your uncensored opinion due to a tyrannical world government's dictate, you will remember what I said today and maybe then you will realize that you failed to understand the entire picture of what it means to be free and trusted as a citizen to willingly follow the law even while defensively armed.

You cite Canada as a prime example. Canada to many is nothing more than a veiled socialist encampment where her citizen's THINK they are free but they are nothing more than subjects. Since that is your idea of utopia then indeed you should live there.

What your socialist leaning agenda says about law-abiding U.S. citizenry, their appreciation of liberty and gun ownership, or all other attendant responsibilities a democratic republic contains through a free people is clearly transparent. You can keep your idea of a Canadian utopia, thank you very much.

AM

Anonymous said...

How many economists (with their social scientist dates) can dance on the head of a gun control pin?

The fascinating thing about intellectuals is that they actually believe that their trench warfare over footnotes and data actually MEANS anything in the grand scheme of things as we are faced with today.

All of your snarky arguments are about to be overwhelmed by events. Either the society collapses under the economic tidal wave that is about to hit (in which case those who have firearms will no doubt survive better than those who eschew them, and the armed will be ill-disposed to obey any scheme that works toward their disarmament) or the Obamanoids will proceed with AWB2 and the federal seizure of control over all private transfer of arms (the ill-named lie called "the gunshow loophole") thus sparking armed civil disobedience if not outright civil war.

In the first event, you left-wing academics are either going to be stew for the cannibal's pot, or pulling plows for those who are armed.

In the second, those who advocate citizen disarmament of the "gun nuts" are going to be hiding in deep cellars and caves from those people who, having lost family members to a predatory government, will be using Bill Clinton's Serbian rules of engagement to wipe out the political, media and intellectual underpinnings of that tyrannical regime.

In any case, your footnotes will be used for kindling.

Kinda makes you want to go buy a firearm, doesn't it? Better hurry, before they're all gone.

Mike Vanderboegh
sipseystreetirregulars.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

""So let's suppose Lott is wrong. Is this justification to ban gun ownership? What's your point?"

That's not the point, ding dong. The point is that the gun nuts are liars and cooking the books.

weinerdog43"

That is his point weinersucker, just because someone can say hurtful things doesn't mean you can take away their freedom of speech. Rights are rights.

Anonymous said...

All of this teeth nashing and insulting law-abiding gun owners is really quite funny. You site Canada as an example, but they are now re-considering their draconian anti - gun laws becuase they do not work and they have cost Canadians untold millions of dollars. England just had the largest public demonstration in their history, with the people demanding their guns back after 11 years of a rising crime wave. The government prosecuting people for defending themselves from criminal home invasion. The Brits have had enough of your "utopia", doesn't that tell you something?

Whether John Lott is right or wrong simply deos not matter, where guns are banned, England, crime rises. Which US cities have the highest murder rates? Those with the most restrictive gun laws, Chicago, New York, Detroit, LA.

In addition, every living being has the natural right to defend themselves, by denying this basic human right, which you all claim to be sooooo concerned about, you are denying nature.

Anonymous said...

Even if I were to accept your claims, better yet, even if I was to accept the notion that Dr. Lott flat out invented his statistics, a la Kellerman and Belisiles, it changes nothing.

Nothing you say here will affect the reality of shaped wood and blued steel. All you are doing is flapping your gums, or perhaps more accurately, waving your fingers. I might be inclined to take you a bit seriously if you advocated doing the hard work yourself, but as is typical, you will ask someone else's son or daughter to risk their lives and futures for your frankly distorted ideas concerning our society.

Should the general disarmament you seemingly support come to pass, just what is your plan to deal with individuals such as myself, who possess the means to make firearms? Or who simply say "No, I will not comply"?

You don't need any special exit visa to leave the Ivory Tower and join the real world, you know. Simply update your resume and give notice, just like I did. You might even come to prefer reality, as I have. Call it the triumph of the empirical over the theoretical.

To whom do I apply for a restoration of the ten minutes I wasted going through all this nonsense?

Anonymous said...

Now I asked a quetion:
"Those who give up freedom for a little security deserves neither.....now who am I quoting?.....
Now I suppose that it could be said in another way, that if one gives up his/her right to bear arms deserves no freedom".

Very good answer: It was in fact one of the founding fathers of this country(U.S.A.)..Benjamin Franklin: http://www.fi.edu/franklin/

By the way you would be well advise to heed what he said which is the quote inside the Quicktime Movie: "If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten, either write things worth reading or do things worth the writing" Benjamin Franklin.

CorbinKale said...

I have more guns and NO crime.

If these 'intellectuals' could be bothered to look up the definition of infringed, we might all avoid much confusion and grief.

You would think an economist would realize that the one industry that is thriving, right now, is the one he is bitching about. What a classic fraud!

Anonymous said...

Rosser supports "reasonable rights for people to own guns," but smashes "gun nuts." Then we got of apoplectic posts fitting Rosser's jibe about "drooling frenzy." If I didn't know better, I'd say he was goding fools . . .

Anonymous said...

Whenever you are examining data, do not infer causality with what is coincidental. Do not establish relationships between things that change independently of each other.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

I think I probably owe Mencius Mouldbug an apology, both for getting his title wrong (not "Gold Bug") and because I misinterpreted him. I think he (or she?) was in fact supporting my original point, although I am not sure about that.
In any case, an apology for getting the name wrong is in order. No, I am not going to apologize to any of the folks showing off here that the title "gun nuts" applies to them, hack cough, and I confess to having used such provocative language precisely to bring out the bad and ridiculous behavior of this fanatical crowd that like to bully people and demand that we all lick their jackboots.

Before I go further, I want to note that this article did not appear in some leftwing rag. Far from it. Econ Journal Watch does not officially have any position, but its editors are in fact libertarians who one would expect would be inclined to support the "gun rights" position of those all worked up here over my wickedness and supposed political evilness. No, this was published in a source that one would expect to be supporting your baloney arguments. This makes the exposure of the baloney and distortion and lying by your gang of fanatics all the clearer and more definitive. You nuts will just have to suck this up.

AM,

Lott is going to have to answer to Ayres and Donohue. In fact in the past I have granted him some of his arguments in direct exchanges in the blogosphere, prior to seeing what I see now. I am perfectly willing to go with what the data shows. Are you?

Actually, probabaly more than any of the other commentators here, my not very nice label would appear to apply to you. Why am I using such an unpleasant moniker? Because while a majority of the population supports what I would call a reasonable level of gun control, the single minded and single issue voting fanatics like yourself dominate the political discouse, bullying and hounding anybody who disagrees with you. The Dems have completely caved at the national level, in a futile effort to take West Virginia back, and there is and will be no serious effort to increase gun control, certainly not at the national level. Your whining is just stupidly and ignorantly hysterical.

No, the issue is stopping you gun nuts from further weakening what gun laws there are, with such an effort being pushed hard by the NRA here in Virginia. AM, will you write lettters of condolence to the families of all the extra people who will commit suicide in D.C. after the number of handguns goes up as a result of that Supreme Court ruling you folks were so eager to have?

Mike V.,

Oh, I suppose if the economy really falls apart, those with guns will be able to kill other people and steal from them and do better than those without guns. Goody. Wow.

As for the Obamanoids enacting some kind of federal gun seizure, this is a sign of what a bunch of paranoids you gun nuts are. This is not remotely on anybody's radar screen, except for you guys and the NRA when it wants to soak money out of dumb suckers like you all with hysterical baloney.

Bill,

I have no problem with law abiding people owning guns. I said that, but in line with the usual argumentation methods of the gun nut crowd, you lie and distort what I said. Do any of you ever have any shame or self-awareness of what disgusting hypocrites you are? I am opposed to Virginia making it legal for gun nuts to take guns into churches and bars and onto campuses.

As for the data, the correct studies like the one I linked to look at things over time. What happens to crime rates in states where the laws are changed compared to ones where they do not change. The data is now in and Lott and M and M appear to be wrong. In most states, loosening gun laws tends to raise the crime rate. Will they fess up, or will Lott continue to cook stuff up, given all the money the NRA gives him?

Peter,

When you are fondling your shaped wood and blue steel, do you get a hard on and jack off?

Donald,

Uh, yes, are we supposed to answer your silly and irrelevant questions? I do happen to know that it was Ben Franklin who said it, and I know that this is one of those faves of all the gun nuts when they get together and start jacking off to each other about how wonderful their guns are and how they ought to be able to take AK 47s to baptisms and presidential inaugurals.

Actually the issue here is whether there is such a tradeoff at all. The usual gun nut argument has been that liberty and security go together, more guns, less crime. Now it looks like it is indeed a tradeoff.

But nobody is saying "no guns" (at least I am not, although you bullying lying hypocrites say that I am). We are saying do not allow guns in churches and bars and so on, and make it harder for really serious nuts like the guy who shot up Virginia Tech, where a friend of my daughter's was seriously wounded, from getting their hands on all that finely shaped wood and blue steel.

CorbinKale,

Yeah, well another industry doing well now is the liquor business. And you guys want people to be free to take guns into bars. I am very pleased to let you guys expose yourselves publicly for what you are. Gun nuts.

Bruce Webb said...

The only dangerous fools are those that suggest college campuses would be safer if every testosterone and tequila fueled 19 year old was carrying concealed at Last Call, or perhaps after winning that national championship.

Why get in a fist fight with that asshole who hit on your girlfriend? Particularly if he's bigger than you? Instead you can just cap him. Why burn a dumpster or smash some glass or turn over cars when instead you can celebrate by emptying your Nine in the air?

And it is not just college kids, you also have the domestic disputes. Just yesterday I was sitting in a bar as the involuntary witness to a long time couple breaking up. She was drunk and crying, he was mad because of her habit of telling her friends he was an asshole, and publicly slapping him in the face. It didn't end well. But it could of ended a lot less well if one or both had been carrying.

If it really was true that an armed society was a polite society some of you might have a point. But frankly a good percentage of gun people I know are not particularly polite to start with and still less when they get to drinking.

I spent some years living in semi-rural Indiana, which is deep in gun country. And there are reasons just about every road sign has bullet holes. None of those reasons have to do with drivers and passengers protecting themselves. It is just a lot of fun to spend your friday night after the H.S. football game ends driving around drinking beer and blasting away.

And I agree. On a couple of occasions I have gone with a friend out to some old quarry and blasted away with his rifle, shotgun and handguns. On the other hand we were not all liquored up at the time.

Finally the logic of "When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns" cuts both ways. Because if you have strict gun laws like NYC does and DC did you give police a good tool to identify outlaws. Every move to widen concealed carry laws simply gives that much more cover to would be robbers.

(There is a chant common to the Marine Vets I know. After a few they will sing out: "This is my rifle, this is my gun, one is for fighting, the other's for fun". On the other hand they were trained to keep those concepts separate and not let one compensate for the other.)

Anonymous said...

To:rosserjb
"As for the Obamanoids enacting some kind of federal gun seizure, this is a sign of what a bunch of paranoids you gun nuts are. This is not remotely on anybody's radar screen, except for you guys and the NRA when it wants to soak money out of dumb suckers like you all with hysterical baloney."

http://www.whitehouse.gov/agenda/urban_policy/

"Address Gun Violence in Cities: Obama and Biden would repeal the Tiahrt Amendment, which restricts the ability of local law enforcement to access important gun trace information, and give police officers across the nation the tools they need to solve gun crimes and fight the illegal arms trade. Obama and Biden also favor commonsense measures that respect the Second Amendment rights of gun owners, while keeping guns away from children and from criminals. They support closing the gun show loophole and making guns in this country childproof. They also support making the expired federal Assault Weapons Ban permanent."

Also, look up the House Bill HR 45. It contains laws that would enable just such a thing we fear, which is confiscation.

Clearly, you have no concept of which you speak. Your knowledge on this topic is miniscule and your knowledge of the firearms themselves is that of someone who has never even taken a safety course in how to operate one. You are also a terrible student of history and are completely unaware of the consequences of the laws which this admin wants to dictate upon us (they started the Revolutionary War, and allowed millions to be killed in the name of two men, Hitler and Stalin). Your fear is beyond irrational and borders on hoplophobia(fear of inanimate objects). Firearms are a Right like the Freedom of Speech, not a privilage (like driving a car), and cannot be licensed. Otherwise you would need a license to operate a keyboard, believe a religion or not have your home invaded by jack-booted thugs. Most of us believe the War on Drugs was and is horrible idea, at least in terms of its execution. We also abhor the Patriot Act, because it allows those in power to trample on more of our Rights.

Anonymous said...

I did not distort what you said at all. Further, I did not insult you personally. I simply stated 1) Where there are the toughest anti - gun laws, there is the most violent crime. 2) That Canada and England are now re-thinking their positions on guns. 3) That is does not matter which study says what, we all have the absolute right to defend ourselves, it is the birth right of every living being on the planet. You refused to address these points and instead decided it was better to attack me personally.

As for Bruce, he just shows that he has absolutely no idea of what he is talking about. Bruce, you have to be 21 years old to even purchase a handgun let alone procure a license to carry it. Your ancedotal stories aside, I have never seen anyone pull a gun on someone because of a disagreement. What you are doing is called projection, you are projected your immaturity, cowarice and inadequacies on the rest of us. You display not only a remarkable lack of knowledge of the subject at hand, you also display an amazing arrogance and lack of respect for your fellow humans. You fail to acknowledge that NYC, DC and Chicago have much higher murder rates that anywhere in Indiana and the closure rate of these crimes is abysmal. You also seem to think it is far better to find a woman dead in an alley, raped and strangled with her own pantyhose, than to find that same woman standing over the corpse of her dead attacker with a gun in her hand. Why is that? Does it make you feel good? Does it make you feel superior? What is the logic behind such a ridiculous position?

Why do you anti - freedom types think it is OK to force your opinions on us? We are not trying to force you to buy and carry guns around. Why it is Ok for you to tell us how we are going to live our lives? And before you make some outlandish claim that the streets are safer, look again at the big cities where guns are virtually banned. Also take a look at the rate of accidental shootings by private citizens versus the police.

From all of this, I can see the American experiment is over. There are those of us who still believe in freedom, liberty and independence and there are those of you that want the government to be your nanny, your parents and to watch over you from birth to death. We will never agree to live in your world and you will never agree to live in ours. What is the soluiton to that? Are you going to murder all of us that don't wish to be slaves?

Anonymous said...

Sez the "Intellectual" rosserjb:

"Oh, I suppose if the economy really falls apart, those with guns will be able to kill other people and steal from them and do better than those without guns. Goody. Wow."

MBV: Yes, the above statement is correct if you substitute "criminals with guns" for "those with guns." The good folks with guns will simply be able to prevent that fate from happening to them, whereas the disarmed, intellectual or not, will be victims differing only in degree.

Then sez you: "As for the Obamanoids enacting some kind of federal gun seizure, this is a sign of what a bunch of paranoids you gun nuts are. This is not remotely on anybody's radar screen, except for you guys and the NRA when it wants to soak money out of dumb suckers like you all with hysterical baloney."

MBV: First, don't mistake me for the NRA. When the histories of this time are written, the term "NRA" will be cross-referenced with the term "Judenrat." They are sell-outs pure and simple. You no longer have them to protect you anymore. You've got us surrounded, you poor schmucks.

Second, with a trip to the White House website, http://www.whitehouse.gov/agenda/urban_policy/ under "Crime and Law Enforcement", we read this wonderful tidbit:

"Address Gun Violence in Cities . . Obama and Biden . . . support closing the gun show loophole and . . .(t)hey also support making the expired federal Assault Weapons Ban permanent."

Now, taken together these "commonsense" proposals include universal gun registration and the banning of currently legal firearms such as semi-automatic rifles. It is not paranoid to point out the truth of our enemies' appetites. These proposals are not only on the radar screen, they are coming over the ridgeline at us. Pardon us while we get ready.

You libs are always pretending to be experts in mental health ("paranoid," "gun nut," etc.). What do you have in your unlicensed psychiatry comic book for "reality denial"?

CorbinKale said...

"Yeah, well another industry doing well now is the liquor business. And you guys want people to be free to take guns into bars. I am very pleased to let you guys expose yourselves publicly for what you are. Gun nuts."

Was that a refutation of my points or a concession? SayUncle has you pegged, alright. I will leave you to your game.

Anonymous said...

I cannot believe so many people who know so little of which they speak do so with all the confidence and seeming authority of the well educated and mentally proficient.

Rosser is a perfect example of an organism without a purpose or benefit to anyone or anything but his own ego. That is the only thing that could explain how he can be so wrong and yet feel so superior.

He is not alone, by any measure, but I find it alarming that so many know so little of history, governments and their tendencies, or human psychology, yet feel so certain of themselves and their opinions born of ignorance that they ridicule their intellectual and moral superiors. Amazing, just amazing!

And it does no good to point them toward factual information, they dare not look at it, or if unwillingly exposed to it, they deny its relevance.

Some or all of these people must have advanced schooling (you will note, I did not say education), because one has to work very hard at it to become that stupid. It takes years to school a man to deny his existence and his right to it. I'm sure glad I'm not that suicidally smart.

Bruce Webb said...

Bruce, you have to be 21 years old to even purchase a handgun let alone procure a license to carry it. Your ancedotal stories aside, I have never seen anyone pull a gun on someone because of a disagreement..
Dipshit laws vary by state. Some establish a 21 year old requirement for ownership some don't. For example just last year South Carolina passed a law allowing 18 year olds to carry concealed. Lowering Gun Purchase Age Requirement I didn't do a full search but had no problem finding other states (Montana, Alaska) which do the same. (In my state of Wa. 18 year olds can own handguns but not purchase one or carry concealed) Which points out something else, a lot of gun nuts are making the argument for lowering purchase ages quite explicit. As for your never hearing of someone pulling out a gun because of a disagreement I guess you don't get out much. Because a search on 'road rage shots fired' pulled up 241,000 results including this incident form last fricking night Road rage results in shots fired and a search on 'bar fight shots fired' pulled up more than 400,000 including this one taken at random Police Blotter: Shots fired in fight outside Sand Bar or you could try 'street party shots fired' Four killed, two injured in street party shooting This from Jan 9th.

As to this
You fail to acknowledge that NYC, DC and Chicago have much higher murder rates that anywhere in Indiana and the closure rate of these crimes is abysmal.
Big cities ALWAYS have higher crime rates and always have and it doesn't have anything to do with gun availability but everything to do with density and poverty. Big cities on average are more dangerous than small towns? Who knew? And if certain southern states didn't have such lax gun laws that gangbangers can roll into town and do bulk purchases maybe the levels of gun crime in those cities would be lower.

But in any event you are clearly yourself in denial. Every day people get into disagreements that escalate into gunfire, all you need to do is to read your daily newspaper. That is not 'projection' that is called taking your blinders off and not letting your ideology totally control your view of reality. Your comment was in context moronic. Either that or you have simply locked yourself into your basement with your collection of American Rifleman.

BTW a simple search on 'disagreement gun pulled' would have given you about 192,000 results. Walsh asked Johnson a series of questions about how and why the murder happened. Johnson said when Street's girlfriend went into her house, he and Street started arguing. He said both of them were armed, and he was carrying his handgun in a pocket of his cargo pants.
"I was sitting in the car with Greg when we had a disagreement over money," Johnson said. "He got an attitude, and pulled a gun out. A car came by and caught his attention, and I pulled the gun out and just shot him."

I think you need to get out more. With open eyes.

Bruce Webb said...

He is not alone, by any measure, but I find it alarming that so many know so little of history, governments and their tendencies, or human psychology, yet feel so certain of themselves and their opinions born of ignorance that they ridicule their intellectual and moral superiors. Amazing, just amazing!

Intellectual and moral superiors? You know self-fellatio is not really a good habit, and public self-fellatio even worse.

Maybe you should show you have earned such respect instead of just self-validating yourself.

Anonymous said...

GREAT! You mean there are some States left that actualy still respect natural rights? Awesome, that is good news.

So your argument is that because big cities have higher crime rates despite their draconian laws, that is justification for disarming the rest of us?

I get out plenty and you are cherry picking data. These incidents are by far the exception, not the rule. These stories of yours are mostly about gang members, criminals and other low lifes who would bash each others skulls in with clubs if they had to. Just go to a bar on the bad side of town and you will see these low life, low class scum beat each other to a bloody pulp over some minor slight. I have seen these type of people not only beat the crap out of each other, but stab and shoot each other too. For basically nothing. There will always be those types of people around, why do you want me defenseless against them?

Would also you deny the 1 - 2 million people who ward off criminal attacks with a handgun every year their right to be safe so you can feel good? Why don't you ask Susan Gratia Hupp how well that worked out for her and her parents?

As an aside, what if we did what you liberty bashers suggest and magically picked every single firearm in the country? Do you really think the low lifes wouldn't them steal them from the police and military like they do today? Are you ready to confiscate every single CNC machine, lathe, mill and various metal working equipment in the country too?

You are projecting and you are voicing your opinion on a subject you clearly know very little about. The well is much deeper than you can even imagine right now.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

Let me ask all of you gun nuts who are frothing at the mouth a simple question. Why is it that not one single one of you has attempted to refute the findings in the study that I linked to? There are a couple of possible answers to that question, none of them flattering to any of you. But then I have had fun aggravating folks like you to come crawling out from under your rocks to make utter fools of yourselves.

I will grant one error. Obama does have an official policy to try to tighten the gun show loophole, revive the assault weapons ban that was around in the 1990s (the guy at VA Tech used weapons that would have been banned under that, but bought them easily near Blackshburg), as well as keep guns out of the hands of children and criminals. I grant they may try to do this, and I happen to agree with all of these proposals, which look very reasonable to me. However, I suspect that they will get very few of them through as Senate Republicans will filibuster them, and Obama will not push hard, as we have these people in Congress who lick the jackboots of the NRA.

SteveK,

Uh, are you really seriously suggesting that Hitler and Stalin did what they did because of overly strict gun control laws?

As for your claims that somehow the right to bear arms is some kind of ultimate fundamental right, sorry, I do not buy it. Prior to this very recent Supreme Court ruling designed to raise the suicide rate in D.C., the interpretation of the Second Amendment was that it was all about militias, not individuals. The countries that have really high rates of gun ownership, such as Switzerland and Isreel and Finland, generally have much stricter laws about who can own or do things with guns than we do. I am unaware of any nation in history, with the exception of us since this recent ruling, that has declared some fundamental right to own guns. Gun nut.

Bill,

I actually wasted my time googling to check on your claims about Canada and England. You are simply dead wrong, although I do not know if you are consciously lying to us or just repeating hysterical baloney you picked up somewhere from your fellow gun nuts. Canada just tightened its gun registration laws. There are complaints in more pro-gun western Canada against this, but the new law is supported by 2/3 of the Canadian population.

As for England, googling pulled up all sorts of demonstrations against guns. I found one blog where some gun nut was going on about some allegedly huge pro-gun demo there, but with no link. He used similar language to what was used, but with zero evidence. Again, the available evidence is that even if there was such a demo, it is being way outweighed by anti-gun demos. Gun nut.

And, regarding your second appearance, nobody here has called for taking guns away from anybody. Why do you and the rest of your gun nut pals here keep repeating this utterly false drivel? You people are delusional.
Gun nut.

Vanderboegh,

"Judenrat"??? I fear the term for you is a lot worse than gun nut, although that holds too.

CorbinKale,

"SayUncle"? Why should I care what another gun nut has to say? And just what is my game? Gun nut.

straigharrow,

You go on and on about factual information and education, blah blah. But somehow you do not bother to deal with the factual information presented and linked to in the post, along with the rest of the gun nuts showing up here. Deal with facts rather than speechifying ignorantly. Gun nut.

Oh, and to whoever it was who said I obviously know nothing about guns? I earned a Marksmanship medal on my way to becoming an Eagle Scout. Sorry, it is because I do know about guns that I have respect for them and think that their ownership and use should be more seriously controlled than it is now in the US, and that the push in Virginia to loosen the laws on guns should be blocked.

What a pathetic collection of ignorant gun nuts who refuse to even try to discuss scientific studies and facts.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

Oh, and regarding the argument that you gun nuts are not trying to take away other peoples' rights and it is only all the bad gun controllers who are doing so, a lot of us like to be able to go into churches or bars or schools without having to fear that some gun nut is there being able to legally carry all kinds of guns. Do I need to have my life security reduced because of the fanaticism of you gun nuts?

Anonymous said...

Notice how Mr. Rosser continues to 'provoke' those 'gun nuts'.

A pseudo intellectual proves himself in a debate when he continues provoking with disparaging name calling even after intelligent counter-arguments are given.

Just compare Mr. Rosser to anyone of true intellect you have come across in your lifetimes for a clear example of the distinct differences that fall under an inferior category.

I'll let you decide what category this individual falls under.

In this particular case, truly it is better to keep quiet and be suspected of being a fool than to speak up and remove all doubt.

AM

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

AM,

I notice how you continue to fail to address the substantive points made in the linked material to the original posting, not to mention maintaining your precious anonymity. You might look less like a fool (not to mention a gun nut) if you were to actually address the issues raised in that material.

Anonymous said...

http://thehighroad.us/showthread.php?t=405398

Those horrible "Gun Nuts" saved peoples lives in that story...

Oh and just because you shot 5 rounds of .22 and hit a target 50 yards away doesn't mean you know crap about guns. Tell me, whats a Barrel Shroud? And I'll know if you Google for it.

"are you really seriously suggesting that Hitler and Stalin did what they did because of overly strict gun control laws? "

I'm saying they got away with it because their People couldn't stop them. Oh and you didn't address the gun confiscation at Lexington/Concord which started the Revolutionary war... The English tried to collect everyone's guns, we tell them to pound sand. Next thing you know We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence,[1] promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. Oh and look it says We The People... Provide for the Common Defense. Funny how it includes that in the People part, way before any Militias are mentioned. And tell me how many other Ammendments in the Bill of Rights are to be solely interpreted as communal Rights? The Milita clause of the 2nd is an explanation of the People clause. I.E. A militia is any and all able bodied men with Military Infantry weapons. Basically, if you can stand, you can defend yourself. The idea is that in the event of an invasion or tyrannical government the PEOPLE will have a means of repelling and overthrowing the malicious force. Besides, what part of INFRINGED don't you understand? Look up that word. Its pretty broad, and pretty much means that almost any laws that get in the way of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is INFRINGEMENT. AH, you are about to bring up Regulation. Guess what, since English is a living language, it's meaning has changed over the years. So Regulation in cultural context of the time means "4. To put or maintain in order." So the Militia should know how to fight and use their weapons. They should know the commands of battle for the time. Academic Ignoramous.

"churches or bars or schools without having to fear that some gun nut is there being able to legally carry all kinds of guns."
You would worry about people legally carrying guns in those places? What about cops its legal for them? And I would think you should be much more worried about people ILEGALLY carrying guns in those places, since they are the ones who would mean to do you harm, not someone who took the time to know the law and get the permit. Stop making target rich environments for people who just want to kill others, because thats all those laws do. Watch this:http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4069761537893819675

Academic Ignoramous.

Texas Shooter said...

Mr. Rosser -

"A people armed and free forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition and is a bulwark for the nation against foreign invasion and domestic oppression."

"If Congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may appoint teachers in every State, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, every thing, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress... Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited Government established by the people of America."

Both quotes courtesy of the Namesake of your esteemed University, James Madison. In the 2nd quote, he is talking about YOU!

Madison, if he were alive today to witness your pompous arrogance, would no doubt provide you with a thorough caning followed by a physical removal from the grounds of the University which bear his name.

Anonymous said...

You want a serious response to a paper that uses the default excel chart to simply plot a hand-picked data set?

Anonymous said...

Herr Rosser,

Hitler apologist Martin Heidegger would recognize you as a kindred spirit. The only difference is that he responded to his critics with far greater intelligence. Parroting "gun nut!" over and over again is hardly a substitute for argument.

Therefore, I will end my participation on your blog by recalling a time not long ago when someone asked me impatiently what I thought of gun control and demanded that I give him the short answer. I thought for a moment and replied: "If you try to take our firearms we will kill you."

What was true then is true today. As you have by now qualified as a supporter in advance of tyranny, kindly check out Bill Clinton's rules of engagement as he applied to the Serbians. You may pray to whatever god you worship that somebody does not use the same rules if you get your wish for gun confiscation, and the government attacks them based upon your urgings.

Have a nice rest of your life, however long that may be.

Mike Vanderboegh

PS Are you sure you don't want to buy a firearm now?

Anonymous said...

"churches or bars or schools without having to fear that some gun nut is there being able to legally carry all kinds of guns."

that explains it all. rosser is afraid of people who are not as helpless as him. his desire to control us "gun nuts" is a result of his own cowardice.

let me save you some time and give another of your erudite responses on your behalf:

huh-uh! you're a gun nut!

Barkley Rosser said...

First, just for the record, I apologize to any of my co-bloggers or our regular readers who are offended by the tone of all this, which was certainly triggered by my use of the term "Gun Nuts" in the heading. If you have gotten this far, then you are probably fascinated by watching all the people come out who think it applies to them, but I suggest you turn away if indeed you are offended by my flaming of this gang. I confess that I am having fun poking these bullies who usually get away with all their lying in public. Just could not resist pounding on them when this study came out, published in a libertarian-leaning outlet even!

SteveK,

You are going to continue with this business about Hitler and Stalin and guns? This is probably the stupidest argument any of this crowd is pushing. Be my guest in really making a total and complete fool of yourself. Talk about gun nut, I don't think you are even smart enough to qualify. More like gun moron.

Oh, and as for the gun seizure at the beginning of the Revolutionary War, that was all about the rights of a militia, which is what the Supreme Court said the Second Amendment was about until the jackboot lickers took over the Court recently.

"Texas Shooter" with a picture of a rabid dog??? You have got to be kidding. Talk about a total caricature of a gun nut!

Regarding your quoting James Madison about the dangers of an unchecked Congress, um, what is the relevance of this? Did I support an unchecked Congress? No, I did not. More horse manure out of this collection of gun nuts. I am all for checks and balances and a great admirer of the man for whom the institution I teach at is named. I love it how you clowns make this stuff up.

HC,

I will give you credit and will not call you a gun nut. You are the first person disagreeing with me who at least has made a reference to the linked material in the post. Congratulations, and I mean it. Of course, you did not actually address any of the content of the material. Who gives a shit what kind of sheet the stuff is on. It is the content of the argument that matters, and that you have done zero to refute. So, there are limits to the congratulations, but at least you are in the ballpark of reason and not just ranting insanely.

Which brings us to "Judenrat" Vanderboegh, who somehow thinks he can undo his earlier remarks by accusing me of acting like a Hitler apologist, followed by a statement apparently desiring my early death. Just what one would expect from someone who talks about "Judenrat." You don't happen to belong to the Aryan Nations do you, "Judenrat"?

And, if as you are promising this is goodbye, well, good riddance!

adam celine,

Oh, of course you are right. This is all just due to my cowardice. I am terrified that all you gun nuts are going to come after me with your guns. After all, "Judenrat" here even wants to know if I want to buy a firearm now, after his threats.

I have an observation for most of you (not including HC). You are just a bunch of schoolyard bullies, and the truth about such people is that they cannot take it when somebody else does to them what they are used to doing to others. You gun nuts have gone around harassing, threatening, browbeating, and lying all over the place. But you cannot take it when someboddy exposes you for what you really are. Time to get out of the psycho ward for a reality check, guys.

the pistolero said...

Allow me to retort to the snotty academic assclownery of Barkley Rosser, Bruce Webb, et al:
1. In the words of L. Neil Smith, "The freedom to own and carry the weapon of your choice is a natural, fundamental, and inalienable human, individual, civil, and Constitutional right -- subject neither to the democratic process nor to arguments grounded in social utility." (emphasis mine -- ed.)
2. Molon Labe, bitches. And furthermore, if you're so sure of your cause, soldier up and do it yourselves as opposed to sending other men with guns to do your dirty work.

Anonymous said...

A penis reference is the best you can do? That's not even original, much less funny. And you ignore the rest.

Typical.
Pathetic, yet typical.

With all due respect to Mr. Vanderboegh, I must disagree with something he said: please don't buy a gun. Please stay as far away from them as you can. I know it's a Right, but not everyone should exercise that Right. Seeing the level of projection you engage in, you're exactly the sort who would wave your gat around in order to win an argument over a parking space, and then have the gall to cry and claim to the police that it "just went off" after you shot some poor b@stard.

Anonymous said...

Rosser said," You go on and on about factual information and education, blah blah. But somehow you do not bother to deal with the factual information presented and linked to in the post, along with the rest of the gun nuts showing up here. Deal with facts rather than speechifying ignorantly. Gun nut."

I confess, I did not address the factual information presented because it was already dealt with by others and proved you wrong. Which fact of course, you ignored, then called people names to divert attention away from your paucity of logic and truth.

As revealed in several of your comments your grasp of history is abysmal. I did not and do not take you to raise. Shame on you for having reached adulthood and having remained so ignorant. Glib nonsequitirs do not a refutation make.

Here's a point you may not like, but it is fact. I will not surrender one damn right of mine to you because you are fearful that others are as intolerant and impulse control impaired as are you. So you call "gun nut". Funny thing about that, you have all these imaginary scenarios playing in your head and on your keyboard where someone for no apparent reason is attacking other people. Now, we know that happens. And your solution is to make sure that sane people who would not do so unjustifiably, are helpless to protect themselves or other innocents when some monster snaps. Why do I suspect that your fears of me and those like me are nothing but projection of your own mental and moral instability aided by your ego? Rhetorical question, I am going to answer it for you.

Because you think you are so damn superior to everybody else that any unacceptable fantasies, or thoughts or imaginings of dark deeds of which you may be capable occur to you and seem attractive to you, you assume that everyone else who is your inferior (allegedly) must be even more twisted and dangerous.

Guess what? I am more dangerous than are you. I will not bother or trespass a soul on this earth, until they attempt to make me helpless or defenseless. Then I am very dangerous, because I am smart enough to know that no man needs another to be helpless unless he has evil intent toward that man.

It is that simple? Whether you are talking person to person, person to state, etc. Nobody needs a man to be helpless unless he has evil intent toward that man. Do I need to say it again?

In the last century, over 200 million people were murdered by their own governments after disarming them for their "own safety". That's murder and genocide we are talking about, not casualties of war, those were in addition to the 200 million murdered. And it still goes on in this century. Of course, you wouldn't know about that, because that means you would need to remove your head from your colon and look around.

Because of your vitriol, your refusal to acknowledge the facts that others have laid before you and the fact that the studies you have based your conclusions on have been thoroughly debunked, I have no choice but to consider you one of those evil men who intends me and those like me harm, though we have done nothing to harm you.

Yes, I am your moral and intellectual superior. Too bad that you don't like it. Doesn't change it. Unfortunately for you, I am neither all that smart, or pure of heart. Yet I am your superior, just think how far beyond your league the really good guys are.

O.K. said...

Rosser said:

"Which brings us to "Judenrat" Vanderboegh, who somehow thinks he can undo his earlier remarks [equating the NRA to judenrats] by accusing me of acting like a Hitler apologist, followed by a statement apparently desiring my early death. Just what one would expect from someone who talks about "Judenrat." You don't happen to belong to the Aryan Nations do you, "Judenrat"?"

Rosser, MIke's use of the term "Judenrat" refers to Jews who did the bidding of the Nazis and actually assisted in the extermination of fellow Jews. It is not an antisemetic term, as you seem to think, but a term equivalent to "quisling" or "turn-coat." There are some who think this use of the term is unfair, but it is hardly a racist slur.

See this wikipedia entry:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judenrat

You would know this if you had simply done a google search for the term, rather than jumping to your apparently preconceived notion that hardcore gun rights folks just MUST be racist. Where did you learn that, from Morris Dees?

By the way, I attended Yale Law School and am very familiar with Professor Ayres.

Before I realized that he was simply another anti-gun academic who was seeking to "find" evidence to support his preconceived notions (just as Lott is accused of doing in the other direction and may well have done), I actually interviewed with him for a teaching assistant position.

I did not pursue the position further after I spoke with him, as his agenda was very apparent, however, during our conversation I suggested that if he really wanted to find out whether the issuing of concealed carry permits in Florida actually increases crime (as he was very evidently wanting to show) the way to find out is to simply compile the actual record of those people who got a concealed carry permit - did they commit crimes with their legally carried guns?

If the "gun crime" supposedly goes up because these people have been given permits and are now carrying concealed in public, then it is reasonable to presume it would be because those very same people are committing crimes with those guns. That would be a direct correlation between the two phenomena.

Was there any indication that the permit holders were the ones actually committing the crimes - and in enough numbers to account for any statistical increase? It just seemed to make sense to me that if you want to avoid the problem of correlation being mistaken for causation you would look for such direct evidence, rather than just a correlative rising of crime.

Sadly, Professor Ayres just wasn't much interested in that approach. Gee, I wonder why?

There is a reason for the old saw about there being three classes of lies: "lies, damn lies - and statistics," with the later being at the pinnacle of the art-form.

One point I will grant you is that most people who feel strongly about guns are indeed single issue voters who were silent as the grave while George Bush and his minions wiped their asses with the rest of the Bill of Rights for eight years - warrantless searches, "black bagging" and extraordinary rendition, secret detention and trial by kangaroo military tribunals using secret evidence or evidence extracted by means of torture, "enemy combatant status" denial of jury trial even for citizens, and the ridiculous arguments that the president had war powers equivalent to an absolute despot, etc.

For all too many "gunny" types, so long as thy have their gun, they still think they are free, even as the police state is being erected around them. Most are as blind to the rest of the Bill of Rights as you are to the Second Amendment.

But that does not mean they are wrong about the central importance of arms to freedom. They are correct about that, just as the Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto were correct, and just as Aron Bielski, Jewish partisan leader was correct when he said about their fight against the Nazis: "Without a rifle you are nothing, worthless, you are waiting for death, any minute, any second."

And just as the men at Concord bridge were right about that in 1775.

I will forgive my fellow gun rights activists for not being equally passionate and vigilant regarding the rest of the natural rights of human beings protected by the Bill of Rights, and I will forgive your ignorance and blind hatred and hope that you expand your thinking about this subject.

But I also must tell you that it will not simply be a matter of whether you get your way politically/legally.

That will not be the end of the argument.

While too many have tunnel vision, with a single minded focus on their gun rights, they have the focus of a badger guarding its den and will still react very strongly (to say the least) if you stick your hand in there and try to take the one thing they still hold dear. So please don't poke them with your assault weapons ban "stick."

And that reaction will not be isolated to a few "gun nuts." For every Mike Vanderboegh you see on the web, such are merely the visible and vocal tip of a massive iceberg of defiance. Try to avoid playing Mr. Magoo and crashing into it, sinking us all into a true disaster.

Stewart Rhodes, Yale Law School class of 04. Winner of Yale's William E. Miller Prize for best paper on the Bill of Rights for research on enemy combatant status and proud founder of the Yale Law Gunners, law student shooting group (which was mostly made up of lefties who wanted to learn to shoot for the first time in their lives - and loved it!).

PS - III

Anonymous said...

"That's not the point, ding dong. The point is that the gun nuts are liars and cooking the books."

Perhaps you're thinking of Michael Bellesiles with his fraudulent, anti-gun book "Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture".
from Wikipedia:
"Two years after publishing Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture (2000), Bellesiles was investigated by Emory University for research misconduct. After the committee found him "guilty of unprofessional and misleading work," he resigned his professorship in October 2002, and the Bancroft Prize of Columbia University, earlier awarded the book, was rescinded."
I believe that it was established that he was a liar who cooked his book.

Barkley Rosser said...

the "pistolero,"

Oh, of course you are right. Gosh if that greatly revered Enlightenment philosopher and American Founding Father, L. Neil Smith, says that owning a gun is the most fundamental and inalienable of all human rights, above speech, religion, press, and assembly, well, gosh, that sure does cinch it. How could I have been so ignorant and misguided?

"Molon labes, bitches." Well, the first part at least has a nice historical part, although the third word kind of undercuts it, not quite an L. Neil Smith level of deep profundity.

And, if you have been paying attention, I have repeatedly stated that I am not for taking any gun away from anyone who has one (although an exception might criminals who get arrested). You are as into hallucinatory babblings as many of the other gun nuts here.

Peter,

I agree that the penis reference was not original, and it is indeed pretty tasteless, possibly even pathetic. But, the fact that it is not original is because it is a cliche, and you know about cliches? They are cliches because they are true. I have seen plenty of grown men behaving in obsessive and pathetic ways when talking about or handling their guns. Maybe it was an inappropriate thing to say, but it is all too true about the real gun nuts.

straightarrow,

Others dealt with the factual information? Sorry, more hallucinations and insanity. The only one who even mentioned it was HC, and he did so not to deal with any facts in it.

If you wish to say that my "grasp of history is abysmal," try refuting a single statement about history I have made here. I saw some serious nonsense stated by others, such as the ludicrous claim that the largest demonstration in British history was against gun control.

Regarding all the genocides, guess you want to get in bed with the historically abysmal SteveK. Let me see, I remember now, Hitler carried out a massive disarming of the armed-to-the-teeth Jews of Germany and Poland prior to shipping them off to the camps. Stalin engaged in a massive disarming campaign of the armed-to-the-teeth Ukrainian kulaks before he killed off millions of them in the collectivization famines of the early 1930s (you were not counting that? You do not get anywhere near your 200 million without the famines). Mao engaged in a massive disarming of the armed-to-the-teeth Chinese peasants prior to the millions dying in the Great Leap Forward famines. Right.

In the meantime it is comforting to know that you are my "superior" and one of the "really good guys." We can all sleep at night calmly with this knowledge.

Stewart,

Thank you for coming on and making your remarks. Needless to say, my nasty, stick-poking moniker does not apply to you. Yes, I know what Judenrat means, but I think it is not acceptable to use in this discourse, not even close. You even recognize that might be the case. In any case, its dear user has certainly shown his true colors with wishing me an early death.

I am not surprised that Ayres may have strong views on this matter. It seems that most of the people who study this topic do, although it seems that the field has been largely dominated by those of the Lott ilk rather than the Ayres ilk. I do note again that the paper was published in a journal that would be viewed a priori as being inclined more to the Lott view, and I know that some colleagues of the editor have in the past been fans of Lott. One of them even recommended to me once that I bring him to my campus to present a seminar. This was shortly after the infamous sock puppet episode on his part, which I happen to consider to be completely dishonorable and beneath contempt. So, I was not inclined to invite him, although I would have no problem inviting a civilized gun rights defender in, and, if you dig hard enough in the econoblogosphere, you will find serious debates between me and Lott where I have granted him arguments when he seemed to have the data on his side, despite my openly stated disdain for his professional ethics that he is well aware of.

You may well be right that Ayres and Donohue's critique of the Florida data or what has gone on there is misplaced or warped. Quite possible. However, I would remind you that one of the findings in their study is that in all of the other 23 states, the evidence was in the balance of greater gun availability not being correlated with lower crime. Florida was/is the only state going the other way, but it is so large, and its supposed effect was so large, that it was possible for M and M to make their bizarre claim that at the national level the gains from loosening gun laws outweighed the costs. Even if there is a better way to estimate what went on in Florida, and maybe some of the other state estimates have problems, I would say A and D did effectively show that the there are serious problems with the Florida data used by M and M, and there is a strong case for saying they overestimated the benefits of loosening gun laws, although you may be right that if a different method was used the results might go the other way. Certainly we have not heard the end of this.

As it is, we have had people like Lott and M and M going around to state legislatures, as they are doing right now in Virginia, touting as an absolutely proven fact that increasing gun availability lowers crime, when at best this is now an unresolved issue and most certainly not a proven fact, even if Ayres and Donohue have failed to prove the opposite, and they are careful to say that they have not done so.

I appreciate your willingness to recognize that gun owers' rights are not the end all and be all of human rights, and that much of what has gone on in recent years is at best an embarrassment, which is indeed very much what I have been reacting to. You may be right that I should not poke these people as I have, and I have already apologized to my co-bloggers and regular readers for stirring up such a flame war. So, I confess a certain childish indulgence, drawing out the scum to humiliate them by letting them spout off and make fools of themselves publicly, as they have in spades here.

As a final note, I will remind that part of what has me annoyed with these people, aside from hearing their not fully defensible assertions repeated so self righteously over and over (and where I live, I do hear it over and over), is what happened at Virginia Tech. If the assault weapons ban had still been in place, Cho would not have been able to buy as high powered guns as he did. I would have to go back, but I did the calculations. My best estimate is that about a third of the people who died that day would not have if the assault weapons ban had been in place and he had bought the next most deadly legal weapons available where he went to purchase.

So, as far as I am concerned the blood of those dead is on the hands of all the opponents of the assault weapons ban, including even more reasonable people such as yourself. And, given that a friend of my daughter's was seriously wounded and that while it was going on friends and colleagues were terrified for children of theirs who were there whom they could not get on their cell phones, well, Stewart, while I respect your reasonableness and your willingness to teach pathetic lefties who want to learn how to shoot to do so, you should realize that this matter and this current push to further loosen things in Virginia (the question is not going the other way here, as so many of these "commentators" keep asserting) is very personal for me.

the pistolero said...

I am not for taking any gun away from anyone who has one
I have yet to be given a good reason to believe such from you or any other piece of authoritarian offal. You speak of this "assault weapon ban," but what do you plan to do about the millions of semiautomatic rifles already in the hands of the public? Of course that question was answered, more or less, by Charles Krauthammer back in 1996, when he wrote that, "Passing a law like the assault weapons ban is a symbolic - purely symbolic - move...Its only real justification is not to reduce crime but to desensitize the public to the regulation of weapons in preparation for their ultimate confiscation." I'd be more inclined to believe that, considering that the former "assault weapons" ban did exactly jack and shit to reduce crime. But, again, as the man said, "The freedom to own and carry the weapon of your choice is a natural, fundamental, and inalienable human, individual, civil, and Constitutional right -- subject neither to the democratic process nor to arguments grounded in social utility." And the fact that you have only sarcasm in response to that brilliantly exposes you as the intellectual midget you are.

Anonymous said...

Stewart, Lott started out to prove that the guns were a problem in the society and the more of them, the more problem.

Being an honest researcher, he did not let his prior belief guide his research, but actually let his beliefs adapt to the facts, once he had discovered them. Just to let you know that Lott did not start out on the side of 2nd amendment supporters, so when it is intimated that perhaps he is emotionally driven to validate a cherished belief, it should be obvious to people that know his early work that it just isn't so.

He followed the data to the truth.

I take exception to your assertion that we only care about the right to keep and bear arms. There are no doubt some few selfish ignorami among us, but the very great majority of people with whom I correspond and whom I read are just as adamant about all of our and your rights. It's just that we recognize, that without those guaranteed under the second, the others have no way of being secured from a recalcitrant, or even openly hostile government.


Rosser, I don't offer you any data simply because you are not an honest man. I have tired of arguing with pathological liars. You are one. So I content myself with just letting them and you know that you are exposed. At least to some of us, and we know that honest debate with the dishonorable is wasted effort. I don't give a damn what you get out of this, because as I have said, you are dishonest. I just want to make sure others try looking at you through that particular lens. When they do, I expect they will discover that which seemed unfathomable, now is made clear. That's all.

Anonymous said...

Pistolero,

If we had an assault weapons ban Cho (of the VTech massacre) would not have been able to buy an assault weapon at a retail outlet. Maybe he would have got one anyway. He was a deranged boy, however, who probably would have settled for a less destructive weapon or given up the idea altogether.

With an assault weapons ban, we would indeed still have assault weapons. Bad guys such as drug smugglers would have no real trouble getting them. An assault weapons ban does not make assault weapons disappear by magic. Correct. It would, however, throw obstacles in the way of persons who are permanently or temporarily deranged. These obstacles would reduce the odds of VTech massacre or at least reduce the death toll. Forgive me, pistolero, but I just don't this as all that complicated.

I am personally unimpressed with gun control because I think such prohibitions are generally futile. Think of "Prohibition" in the 20s. I don't see why it's a big deal, however, to put on some ancillary restrictions to restrain the Cho's of the world or, more generally, reduce the harm guns sometimes do.

Why can't we have a reasoned, data-driven debate on what measures do and do not reduce such harms? I gather that you would give me an answer about fundamental rights. But we have lots of fundamental rights that are genuinely respected in spite of restrictions long recognized in the common law. Why is the right to bear arms uniquely immune to such restrictions?

I'm sorry, but I just don't understand why such, well, extreme views are uniquely creditable. I'm genuinely puzzled.

the pistolero said...

If we had an assault weapons ban Cho (of the VTech massacre) would not have been able to buy an assault weapon
Well, considering that crazy bastard (heretofore referred to as CB) didn't use a semiautomatic rifle, I fail to see how any kind of ban on them would have stopped him. CB used a Glock 19 9mm pistol, the only part of which was proscribed by the Clinton-era AWB being the magazine. And I would bet the money I paid for my last firearm (which, by the way, was one of those semiautomatic rifles NOT used in crime that so many still want to see banned) that CB's being constrained by 10-round magazines would not have made a penny's worth of difference on that dark day in Blacksburg.

But we have lots of fundamental rights that are genuinely respected in spite of restrictions long recognized in the common law. Why is the right to bear arms uniquely immune to such restrictions?
You're automatically assuming those other restrictions on rights are valid, which is an assumption most make (even I did once upon a time) so I won't rip you for that; but I tend to think many restrictions on rights are there because of the nanny-state mentality that's taken hold in this country over the years and have created many more problems than they've solved, the most egregious example I can think of right offhand being the illegality of certain drugs. I think it's worth asking how much of the violence perpetrated with guns is due to turf wars between those who deal illegal drugs. As for restraining the CBs of the world, well, I think we would be better served by taking measures to intercept these people before they snap, and in the case of violent criminals, keeping them locked up as long as possible — which, no doubt, would probably be a good bit easier if the system wasn't clogged with casualties of the War On Some Drugs. After all, as I and others have asked, if these people are so dangerous they allegedly can't be trusted with guns, then why are they not still locked up?
Oh, and thank you Roberta, for being civil with me as opposed to calling me a gun nut and implying I have a small penis. I truly appreciate that.

Anonymous said...

Pistolero,

Thank you for correcting my mistake about the weapon Cho used. Does your correction disprove my basic point? Other disturbed persons might try to get assault weapons.

I agree with you about the war on drugs. What a tragic waste of human potential it has created!

You suggest we get to troubled souls such as Cho before they snap. I wish we could! But how would you do that? You often don't know how bad things are until they snap. And even if you could see it coming in some cases, how do restrain them for something you think they might do in the future? It just seems so helpful to put a few obstacles between them and their destructive plans.

I guess I'm still sort of puzzled by your answers. It just seems like you don't want to make *any* concessions. I still don't understand why I should believe that it would be so bad to have at least a few restrictions such as an assault weapons ban or maybe something that prevents you from acquiring powerful weapons too quickly.

Oh, and maybe I'm not as obsessed with size as some of the men on this list. :-)

the pistolero said...

It just seems like you don't want to make *any* concessions.
Change that to read "any MORE concessions" and you'd be right. We gun owners have been conceding bits of our rights away for the last 75 years, and what do we have to show for it as far as any societal benefit? Bupkis. And as far as that societal benefit goes, I think we'd still be better-served if we started looking harder at other methods of crime prevention (such as, say fighting back as opposed to waiting for others to come to one's rescue -- see Dave Grossman's excellent essay "On Sheep, Wolves and Sheepdogs" for more on that) as opposed to advocating for yet more restrictions on people's liberty. I don't mean to be an intractable jackass, really; I just think we should do our level best to preserve the liberties of the people, as opposed to just going for the low-hanging fruit, which is what I believe more gun restrictions to be doing.

Anonymous said...

Pistolero,

I'm worried about you! I read the essay you linked. It was for soldiers and police! Do you think many of men who like guns so much think of themselves as soldiers? That scares me! War and policing are necessary. Sometimes they bring out the best in people. I really admire what so many soldiers and police do. But war and policing bring out the worst in some people. It can be dangerous for your soul! It makes me sad to think about what might happen to gun users who think of themselves as soldiers. Isn't that kind of how Timothy McVeigh was?

I'm still puzzled, Pistolero, but now I'm frightened for you as well!

Anonymous said...

Roberta,

You sound like the sheep who is afraid of the sheepdogs. Also, I've seen iterations of this story where instead of sheepdogs, they have sheep with claws and teeth, to indicate that it is the job of the citizen to protect the citizen.

You shouldn't fear anyone who is in support of more legal ways to own firearms. These people care enough about the law to follow it, someone who doesn't care about the law isn't going to take the time of day to explain to every sheep here why the law should be this way.

Steve K

Anonymous said...

I'm not afraid _of_ the "sheepdogs," Steve. I'm afraid _for_ them.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

Anonymous,

It does not surprise me that there may have been manipulation of data on both sides of this debate. However, the people you mention who have been accused of having done so on the pro-gun control side are not the people who wrote the paper to which I linked. Bottom line is, so what?

I have called people here "nuts," "moron," and "scum," but not "ding dong." If you wish to have this moniker applied to yourself, be my guest.

Roberta,

Thank you for appearing, and I largely agree with your remarks.

the pistolero,

My estimate of the reduced number of deaths that would have occurred at VA Tech if the ban had still been in place was in fact based on the differences in the allowed magazine capacity of the guns used by Cho. Maybe it would not have been a third less, but reloading takes enough time for people to run and hide and so forth. It made a difference, even if we do not know the exact amount. Blood is on your hands, despite your proclaimed good intentions as a sheepdog.

I agree that we are putting too many people in prisons for not very serious crimes.

I never said anything about the size of any body parts. I am more aware of all the excitement that seems to arise from stroking gun barrels, not to mention the glee at the simple repeated firing of guns that results in death or destruction on the part of some more enthusiastic people.

straightarrow,

I am perfectly willing to admit when I make a mistake, as I already did above when I miswrote about Obama's official policy stance. However, I challenge you to show a single instance here (or anywhere else, for that matter) of where I consciously lied. If you cannot provide such an instance, I would suggst that perhaps an apology might be in order.

Given your suddenly making such accusations against me, I find it a bit odd that you are putting forward John Lott as some sort of paragon of honesty and reserach virtue. I have done a pretty thorough google search, reading his Wikipedia entry, his blog, and a bunch of other stuff. It may be that he originally had a different view of guns and changed his mind, but I found nothing anywhere that confirmed this. What is your source for this claim?

Regarding his more general credibility, his Wikipedia entry, which says some highly complimentary things about him, also lists a series of allegations that have been made against him regarding data manipulation and even outright falsification. There is also the weird bit of his having admitted to using a false identity on the internet "Mary Rosh," to praise his own work. I do not know what you think of such things, but I consider it highly unprofessional, at best, and certainly not some indication of some very high level of honesty.

Unknown said...

rosserjb,

let's start with some more quotes from James Madison

"The highest number to which a standing army can be carried in any country does not exceed one hundredth part of the souls, or one twenty-fifth part of the number able to bear arms. This portion would not yield, in the United States, an army of more than twenty-five or thirty thousand men....To these would be opposed a militia amounting to near half a million citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties and united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence. It may well be doubted whether a militia thus circumstanced could ever be conquered by such a proportion of regular troops."

"Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms."

"A government that does not trust it's law abiding citizens to keep and bear arms is itself unworthy of trust."

"To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them,"

Now for a few more founding fathers:

"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." -- George Washington

"…the rifle and pistol are equally indispensable. The very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil interference, they deserve a place of honor with all that's good." -- George Washington

"A militia, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves. ...To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them." -- Richard Henry Lee

"A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks." - Thomas Jefferson

"No free men shall be debarred the use of arms." - Thomas Jefferson

"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms...disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. ... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." -- Thomas Jefferson quotes Cesare Beccaria in Commonplace Book

"The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against the tyranny in government." - Thomas Jefferson

"God forbid we should ever be 20 years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, & always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions it is a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty. We have had 13. states independent 11. years. There has been one rebellion. That comes to one rebellion in a century & a half for each state. What country before ever existed a century & half without a rebellion? & what country can preserve it's liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon & pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. It is it's natural manure." - Thomas Jefferson

"Little more can reasonably be aimed at, with respect to the people at large, than to have them properly armed and equipped." - Alexander Hamilton

"The great object is that every man be armed. . . . Everyone who is able may have a gun. . . . Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defense?" - Patrick Henry

"The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered as the palladium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them." -- Justice Joseph Story

Now for a few other oldies:

"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretense, raised in the United States. A military force, at the command of Congress, can execute no laws, but such as the people perceive to be just and constitutional; for they will possess the power, and jealousy will instantly inspire the inclination, to resist the execution of a law which appears to them unjust and oppressive." -- Noah Webster

Gun control laws increase the power of government and the criminal element over the average citizen and serve no other purpose. - Robert E. Lee

"Gun Control is a Prelude to Totalitarian rule...Before Adolph Hitler came to power, there was a black market in firearms, but the German people had been so conditioned to be law abiding, that they would never consider buying an unregistered gun. The German people really believed that only hoodlums own such guns. What fools we were. It truly frightens me to see how the government, media, and some police groups in America are pushing for the same mindset. In my opinion, the people of America had better start asking and demanding answers to some hard questions about firearms ownership, especially if the government does not trust me to own firearms, why or how can the people be expected to trust the government?...There is no doubt in my mind that millions of lives could have been saved if the people were not "brainwashed" about gun ownership and had been well armed." -- Theodore Haas, Holocaust Survivor

"Certainly one of the chief guarantees of freedom under any government, no matter how popular and respected, is the right of the citizens to keep and bear arms. This is not to say that firearms should not be carefully used and that definite safety rules of precaution should not be taught and enforced. But the right of the citizens to bear arms is just one guarantee against arbitrary government and one more safeguard against a tyranny which now appears remote in America, but which historically has proved to be always possible." - Senator Hubert H. Humphrey

"As civil rulers, not having their duty to the people duly before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as the military forces which might be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow-citizens, the people are confirmed by the next article in their right to keep and bear their private arms." - Tench Coxe

Now some comments:

Notice that all the quotes say citizens or the people, notice that from the start of this country it has always been the citizens right to have firearms. Not the military's or the militia (aka National Guard, etc.) as the liberals like to claim.

The recent Supreme Court ruling did not recently "interpret" the Second Amendment, it reaffirmed what the founding fathers' plainly stated. The collective right that you talk about is actually the one that was only a recent thing as proven by the quotes.

"only hoodlums own such guns" sounds a lot like you only replace hoodlums with gun nuts.

I think the most fitting quote that would fit you to a T is "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." -- Sigmund Freud

As for the claims that us "gun nuts" "lie" and "bake the books", I have this to say:

As far as I know John Lott does not own firearms, so that would not make him a "gun nut". Also I will not speak as to why his data was prior to 1992, I would guess that he stated in the paper the reason for it.

The Brady's have been caught baking the books by try to claim that 13 children are killed each day when that number included 18-24 year olds. A child is defined as old as 14. Criminals were also included (gang and drug activity).

You are so keen on gun control, how about vehicle control? After all, more people and children die in vehicles. How about water control, more people and children die in water.

Now let's talk about these google searches of yours, how many are done by people that are not supposed to have firearms due to felonies, etc.? I would venture that if you actually persued the data you would end up with a percentage in the high 90s. Which just reinforeces that gun control does not work, the thugs and criminals do not obey the laws (which is why they are thugs and criminals).

Here is a suggestion stop with the gun control laws and move to criminal control laws. If a criminal is to be loose in public without someone watching their every move (ie. in jail/prison) then they should not become a repeat offender. If you can't honetly say that a criminal will not be a repeat offender, then they should stay locked up. Do that and you will see crime rates drop.

As some people say, if they can't be trusted with a gun they can't be trusted in public.

Would this create a higher expense in jail and prison budgets, yes but what are the costs to taxpayers for repeat offenders from first arrest until their death when you take into account:

-the man hours of officers involved in thier cases
-the court costs
-the costs for appeals
-the cost of their parole/probation

Let's take an extreme case - the idiot in Boca that was arrested 190 times. The costs of how he was handled have to far outweigh if they had kept him locked up the first time he was arrested, if they felt that he was a threat to the public (ie. would repeat being a criminal).

the pistolero said...

Do you think many of men who like guns so much think of themselves as soldiers?
No. I read Mr. Grossman's commentary as pointing out something that we all should be thinking about: namely, that evil can strike anywhere, at any time, and that the best way to survive one's encounters with it is to have that warrior mindset and the tools so you can take care of it yourself as opposed to waiting on LEOs or soldiers to show up and take care of it. Sort of like Todd Beamer and his compatriots did on that fateful day in September 2001 over the skies of Pennsylvania. One could argue they had no choice, but then who's to say those of us in ordinary situations would? I can almost understand why some would find that threatening, but I don't think any of us equate the readiness or willingness to fight with chomping at the bit to do so, as many anti-gunners would like you to think. IOW: We don't have the mindset we do because we're itching for a fight. We have it because we'd like to survive encounters with those who are itching for the fight, i.e., Cho Seung-Hui. I did not mean to frighten you, and for that I apologize.

the pistolero said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
the pistolero said...

Blood is on your hands
Roberta: THIS is why there can be no reasoned debate. You see, people like Mr. Rosser, who pretty much admit with their own words they don't really know anything about armed conflict in general and probably even less about particular situations, thinks things like the VT shootings are ultimately the fault of people like me, and apparently not the fault of that demented sack that pulled the trigger. You can't reason with that. Of course he'll come back with more haughty, self-righteous horseshit as he's so adept at doing, but that's ok. It's not like we're not used to being shit on by those living in a dream world.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

mercurysys,

Nice set of quotes. The Revolutionary militias were composed largely of people who owned their own guns, and the US in that period of time was overwhelmingly rural, with many of those rural people living on or near the frontier. I have been sympathetic all along to rural people having guns. It is their demand that urban people cannot restrict guns in their cities that is the problem, and, of course, the guns in the Revolutionary period were nothing like the high-powered assault weapons and handguns we have now of the sort that Cho used to gun down people at VA Tech.

Regarding all this founding father rhetoric, and even some of the others, the big difference between the US and continental Europe back then was that we had democracy and they did not. Reading lots of what people are arguing here, one would think that our democracy has been preserved from "tyrants" by the gun owners of America being able to rise up in rebellion, as Mr. Jefferson once suggested might be a good idea every 20 years or so. Now, aside from the Civil War, which was a matter of conflict between organized armies, have we had since the American Revolution any instance in which the armed citizenry saved us from tyrannical government? Not remotely. This whole line of argument is just more fantasy.

Another aspect of the quotes is presumably to argue that the true interpretation of the Second Amendment has been the more individualistic one than the more militia oriented one. Both ideas are in the Amendment. For a very long time the rulings of the Supreme Court favored the militia interpretation, now it favors the more individualistic interpretation so that we may well have an increase in suicides in Washington, a point not a single person here has addressed.

More fundamentally, the issue of whether or not to have more or less limits on guns and the impact of doing either on crime is, or should be, a matter of scientific research. I have linked to a study that does not support the assertions in many of these eloquent quotations. Rhetoric is one thing, but facts count more.

Regarding John Lott, I do not know if he owns a gun or not. I do know that he has received lots of money from the NRA. The cutoff of his data in 1992 was not a manipulation. He just did the study shortly after then. The problem is when he and others make broader projections based on that cutoff, given the sharp change in trends that began then, without redoing the study with the later data. The charges regarding data manipulation involved more details of county level data, as well as the claim that he outright fabricated a "survey" that served as the basis for a bunch of his studies.

the pistolero,

Clearly Cho was responsible for his actions. But he would have killed a lot fewer people if he had been unable to buy as high powered weapons.

Also, there is this unpleasant matter of suicides, with something like 30,000 per year in the US due to guns, less, but on the same order of magnitude as the number of deaths due to automobiles. Again, and I have seen nobody here refute this at all, the evidence is overwhelming of a very tight and strong correlation in the US between per capita gun ownership and suicide rates. Again, D.C. has been rock bottom on both, which is why I think that those of you advocating this recent decision by the Supreme Court will have more blood on your hands, morally speaking.

the pistolero said...

He also could have killed fewer people had society at large not trained his victims to sit and wait on the police to come and save them. If we're going to take collective responsibility for anything, we should take collective responsibility for that, but that would involve facing myriad unpleasant truths that few in modern America are willing to face. And sorry if this sounds callous, but the D.C. suicide rate really doesn't mean a thing to me. Maybe the rate will go up as the right to keep and bear arms is respected in D.C., but, well, freedom is messy. And I know what's coming next -- "What if it was someone you loved?" Been there and done that, but it was cigarettes and not guns. And it hurt like hell to lose him, but I came to realize that more regulations and bans weren't the answer. At least they shouldn't be to a people who knows and cherishes true liberty.

Anonymous said...

Rosser: "US in that period of time was overwhelmingly rural, with many of those rural people living on or near the frontier. I have been sympathetic all along to rural people having guns. It is their demand that urban people cannot restrict guns in their cities that is the problem, and, of course, the guns in the Revolutionary period were nothing like the high-powered assault weapons and handguns we have now of the sort that Cho used to gun down people at VA Tech."

Two things in regard to the Revolutionary War. The Bill of Rights doesn't change based on location. Nor does it change based on time. Do you have the same Right to the Freedom of Speech in a rural area as you do in an urban area? Does the Freedom of Speech, Press and Relgion only apply to parchement and quills, movable type presses and churches without electricity?

In regards to the "high powered assault weapons" that Cho used, those weapons weren't any more powerful than the ones police use. The 9mm isn't considered a high-powered round, and the .22LR of the Walter P22 he used isn't even close to a high-powered round. Now in regards to magazine capacity, watch this video to see how someone who is trained can change a magazine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GCDIfxHcJkw. A trained person can swap a mag in .25 of a second, a person fumbling with it would probably take about 1 second, which isn't much down time between Cho's killing.
High-powered "assault weapons" (rifles) are used in less than 1% of all crimes and are usually much bulkier than a small pistol which can be concealed until once you are inside the bank. You need to learn about the different types and classifications of firearms. Here is a video in which a police officer explains all the laws in regards to those weapons. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YjM9fcEzSJ0

There ya go, now you know.

Anonymous said...

Rosser-

I think your main point is that you believe empirically based on this subject study and others that more guns = more crime. Also you are trying to convince us that more laws against firearm ownership would prevent crime.

I took a couple years of econometrics and mathematical statistics as an undergrad. Mainstream economists spend their entire careers running regression models hoping to find any sort of correlation which supports their hypothesis. That being said, I understand the models and journal publications and the truth is there isn't a generally accepted methodology for econometrics. I have Lott's book, "More Guns, Less Crime" and it's not an exciting read to say the least, but his methodology is valid and his conclusions are factual and true. Every couple years a competing economist comes along to discredit Lott's findings, and Lott generally responds with updated data which buttress his original findings. It's sort of a past time in economics to tear leading economics down from their pedestal, but nothing really conclusive is presented by Lott's detractors. But of course most ivory tower liberals love to bash us ignorant gun-nuts, so maybe but now can show them we won't let their insults echo within their halls without a response.

Believing in this empirical presentation is dangerous ground for you, a person which doesn't believe in the right of personal firearm ownership, because empirical evidence can produce a different result and prove you wrong on the more guns = less crime. There have been lot of empirical studies on the Phillips Curve that 'proved' it to be true but we all suffered the result of our leaders blind faith. There needs to be causation behind the model.

1) You are completely wrong about the assault weapons ban - it would have done nothing to prevent Cho from killing. Lite noted before, the Glock was not prohibited under the ban, nor were the magazines, just the new manufacture thereof. If the ban were still in place the mag would have been nominally more expensive, like $80 vs $30 when he just paid $600 for the handgun and another $50+ for ammo. He passed all the required checks, and unless you want to start recording "thoughtcrimes" in a national database, additional laws to prevent his purchase of firearms would prevent ALL private purchases. And Roberta, I'm sure the extra fractions of seconds it would have taken to reload a 10rnd mag vs a 30rnd wouldn't have helped the kids escape out of the room with one entrance that Cho was standing in front of. Plus see the cell phone videos of the police cowering behind buildings and trees while gunshot reports are heard from Cho executing the innocent because it was illegal for them to bring weapons to defend themselves. The police cannot protect you.

2) It is an empirical FACT that minorities positively correlate with more crime. Shall we ban them as well from urban areas? How have all those bans on drugs been working out to prevent their illicit use?

3) Why are you surprised at the response of a group that feels oppressed by the government and media? If another empirical FACT that private autos correlate with fatalities were used as the basis for banning them, don't you think auto owners would be just as outraged? Combine the feelings of the gays being oppressed and silenced socially, the threat of confiscation of thousands of dollars worth of valuable possessions and tools, along with the underlying knowledge that we have a natural right to use and own these guns and you have the modern gun activist.

I work for a living, so maybe I'll review the paper this weekend.

III

Unknown said...

rosserjb,

You claim that the firearms are not the same as back then, true but then if you want to use that argument you must also apply that same logic the same way to the internet; computers; radio; tv and so on in regards to the 1st.

You crack me up with the uneducated BS about Cho's firearms; they were not "high-powered assault weapons", he used a .22 pistol and a 9mm pistol. Hardly "high-powered" and hardly "assault weapons".

I also love your spouting the Brady bunch's BS (are the not sending out new faxes?) about "high-powered assault weapons" because none of the firearms listed in the original AWB were more powerful than my .30-06 hunting rifle. It also happens to be a semi-auto (although it is not an evil black rifle) so it has the same rate of fire as the ones that were in the AWB. The fact of the matter is that the guns that you want us to not have are the exact guns that the founding fathers would say we should have, how else would you overthrow a tyrannical government if you don't have the same firearms? Don't even start with the whole nuclear bomb shit because that is not considered arms.

We were not a democracy, we never have been. Get your facts straight.

You claim that we have not had an instance of armed citizens rising up against a tyrannical government since the Revolution, obviously have not heard of the battle of Athens, TN. Look it up.

The militia is all citizens as noted in my previous post. It is our natural right and duty to defend ourselves against all enemies including our own government.

I agree about rhetoric and fact. I don't give a rats ass if the "study" (rhetoric) does not support the actual statements (facts)from the founding fathers. The founding fathers would be the ones to know what they meant for whom the 2nd was to apply to. If you want to listen to a couple of guys that wrote a "study" (rhetoric) over 200 years after the 2nd was written then your the one with issues.

As for suicides (try using real numbers instead of pulling them out of your ass or someone elses), people will do it regardless if they have guns or not. Here are the facts for 2005 from the CDC:

-32,637 total suicides for all ages(for all possible ways of doing it)
-17,002 used a firearm (for all ages)

Here is trasportation deaths for 2005 from CDC:

-47,894 for all ages
-45,520 for all ages (for motor vehicles)

No way near the number of deaths due to automobiles, as I stated before. Now you have someone that refuted your numbers.

Now your statement about the number of firearms and suicide rates particularly D.C. they only had 10 firarms suicides out of 33 suicides in 2005 but they had 142 homicides that year out of all 154 firearms deaths that year. So you could argue that the lower number of firearms reduces suicide deaths by firearms but there were more than twice as many non-firearms suicides. So there goes more of your "overwhelming" evidence that is a "very tight and strong correlation" down the toilet.

You talk about us having blood on our hands for backing individuals rights to firearms, well you have it more so by trying to disarm us so that thugs, rapists, etc. can have victims that can not defend themselves. Maybe that is what you want, maybe you are conspiring with them because you are tied to them are they your employees?

Anonymous said...

"It may be that he originally had a different view of guns and changed his mind, but I found nothing anywhere that confirmed this. What is your source for this claim?"

His own words. Obviously your research skills are not as good as you would wish.


"Regarding all the genocides, guess you want to get in bed with the historically abysmal SteveK. Let me see, I remember now, Hitler carried out a massive disarming of the armed-to-the-teeth Jews of Germany and Poland prior to shipping them off to the camps. Stalin engaged in a massive disarming campaign of the armed-to-the-teeth Ukrainian kulaks before he killed off millions of them in the collectivization famines of the early 1930s (you were not counting that? You do not get anywhere near your 200 million without the famines). Mao engaged in a massive disarming of the armed-to-the-teeth Chinese peasants prior to the millions dying in the Great Leap Forward famines. Right."

There's just one lie. If we only count it as an issue lie rather than each untruth you used to deny the issue. I will amend my original number down to 170,000,000 as at the moment that is all I can verify. Although I found some errors is the accounting, for instance the Final Solution was listed at 6 million, when in actuality it was 13 million, 6 million of which were Jews and which is referred to as the Holocaust. Just one instance.

Another deception on your part, which some of us less enlightened call lying, is your pretense that the famines you mentioned were somehow not enabled and purposely directed at a disarmed populace who had fallen out of favor with the armed government or tribal organizations.

Now, I know you knew you were being dishonest. Now everybody knows you were.

The information is too readily available and I still haven't taken you to raise. Your pretense of not knowing of its existence is lame. Simply put, you are dishonest and dishonorable. I don't give a damn what you learn or admit, I just want to be sure others don't think you actually have anything useful to say.

Yes, this is ad hominem. I don't much care to be polite to people I disrespect and whom I find morally reprehensible. So if your reaction is going to mention my hostility toward you and my lack of courtesy, I plead guilty. Of course with justification. I just don't like hypocrites, especially hypocrites who are intent on harming me.

Unknown said...

rosserjb,

As I laid in bed last night I thought about your comment that it was ok for rural folks to have firearms but that people in big cities should not. Why is that the people in the cities not to be treated equally? I thought that all people were to be equals?

Then I realized something... your a racist, it all makes sense. Rural folks are predominantly white where as minorities predominantly live in cities.

It all makes sense now, given the fact that gun control originally came about in this country as a way to keep guns out of the hands of blacks. Yes, gun control affects whites today but not as much as it does minorities. Don't believe me, look at the make up of D.C., NY, LA and tell me that it does not.

Here are some census numbers:

-D.C. (2006) 38.4% white
-NY (2000) 44.7% white
-LA (2000) 46.9% white
-Chicago (2000) 42% white

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

This is beginning to get tiresome, and now Sandwichman is mocking us, but I will do at least one more round of replying to all you gun nuts, as I know you are so obsessed you will insist on having the last words.

the pistolero,

"Trained to sit and wait for the police"??? I believe that the minute Cho started doing his thing, people started moving fast, but with that handgun with well-loaded magazines he was able get a lot of shots out really fast before anybody could do much of anything. Once people knew what was going on they were trying to get away as fast as possible.

Yes, regarding suicided in D.C. you sound callous, and no, your cigarette analogy does not hold. Death from cigarette smoking comes very slowly over many years of smoking and smoking and smoking. Death from self-inflicted gunshot can be instantanous. Indeed, this is precisely the issue. Lots of people get temporarily depressed. If they can survive that period, they often resume their desire to live. If they do not have an easy way to kill themselves, they have a much better chance of surviving the period of depression to live, but if they have a gun, they can off themselves very quickly and lose that chance.

I am very aware of this as a close friend attempted suicided and failed last year. He was not born in the US and does not own a gun, but he came damned close to doing himself in with a bunch of pills, a liter of vodka, and some serious self-slashing with a knife. If another friend had not found him when he did, he would not have made it. As it is, he has recovered and is in good spirits and functioning well. If he had owned a gun, I have no doubt he would be dead now.

SteveK,

Regarding the Second Amendment we are back to the matter of its interpretation. The longstanding interpretation that emphasizes the role of the militia as supreme has long allowed for restrictions on gun ownership. The interpretation back in force now focuses on the individualistic interpretation. But your claim that this latter is absolutely and unequivocally correct are simply your claims.

You wish to claim that guns now are not much different from guns back then? Those Revolutionary era muskets took quite a bit of time to load for firing a single shot. With his heavily loaded magazines, even Cho could mow down large numbers of people in seconds, even though such power is not needed for hunting, self-defense, or anything else sensible, and is viewed by the police as something dangerous and undesirable, especially in the urban environments in which the majority of Americans live today.

HardCorps,

Oh my, yet another newbie who cannot read. I never said that the study showed that more guns = more crime, only that they have disproven the studies that claim, as Lott does, that more guns = less crime. Duh.

Regarding Cho and the regulations, on thinking about it further, the issue is not reloading, it is how many shots would be fired for the amount of time, and number of loadings, that he fired. I would say that it is reasonable to assume that he was going to do a given amount of loadings and reloadings and firing them. If he had been restricted to magazines with many fewer bullets, that would have reduced the number of bullets fired and the number killed. I think that indeed the regulations were very important and more died because of the loosening of those restrictions.

Regarding minorities, well, Asians have even lower crime rates than whites, but Cho was an Asian. Duh.

Cars serve a very useful function, certainly far more useful and necessary than guns. Sorry about that. And, you simply exhibit the paranoia of the whole lot of you when you claim to be oppressed and that everybody is out to get your guns. Nobody is, and the ball is in your guys court, thanks to the national Dems caving to you guys starting in 2006, in spite of Obama's stated urban policy. That will not be acted on. What is on the table is the NRA's push in Virginia at least for further relaxations based on the lies pushed by Lott about "more guns = less crime," which is exactly what this thread is about.

mercurysys,

So, let me congratulate you, really, in catching me in a mistake. I did pull the 30,000 number from memory, which in fact is a bit under the total suicide number, while the suicide by guns is only a bit over half that at about 17,000. However, that number is still of the same order of magnitude as the number of auto deaths, which is about 45,000. The concept of "order of magnitude" refers to multiples of ten. So, if the number of suicides by gun were at say 5,000, then you would be right. At only a third of auto deaths, they are still of the same order of magnitude.

Actually, your bringing up the matter of the gun suicides being far less than the gun homicides in Washington very much reinforces my point, that D.C. has an extremely low suicide rate, which has almost certainly been due to its very low rate of handgun ownership. Nationally, the number of homicides by guns has been around 8,000 most recently, less than half of what the number of suicide gun deaths has been. Of course, we only hear the gun nuts ranting on about crime and never saying a peep about suicide. This is indeed why. Deaths by guns by suicide are much higher than homicide gun deaths nationally, but are far lower in the place that has the strictest handgun restrictions. Hence, I will continue to insist on my main point. I have no idea what will happen to the gun homicide rate in Washington in the future, but I have very strong reason to believe the suicided deaths by guns will soar.

In comments above I have already pointed out that if Cho were simply going to fire a given number of magazines, highly likely, then a lot fewer bullets would have been fired if he had a weapons with a magazine containing a lot fewer bullets.

I realize that there is there are minorities who like to argue that the US is not a democracy, but a republic or something else, although probably the strongest argument for its lack of democracy is the outcome of the 2000 presidential election. That reminds us that the US is certainly far from being a perfect or a pure democracy, but I think the majority of people will (democratic vote and all that) disagree with your claim. To simply assert it as definitely the case simply makes you look silly.

You are correct that I have not heard of the "battle of Athens, TN." So, please explain to us how this battle saved America from tyranny. Of course, I realize that since you do not believe the US is a democracy, your argument may have some problems.

Oh, regarding what is rhetoric and what is facts, the eloquent statements of the Founding Fathers are rhetoric. The data in the study I linked to are facts, even if one may disagree with how they analyze the facts. And, John Lott has not refuted this study, or the 2004 conclusion by the National Academy of Sciences that agreed with it (that the claim that more guns = less crime has not been established).

Regarding my alleged racism, well, it is the local people in those cities who are electing the politicians who are passing, or trying to pass, or defend what has already been passed, these various gun control laws. In the case of Washington, D.C., the mayor strongly opposing this latest Supreme Court decision was Adrian Fenty, an African-American.

straighrarrow,

"His own words" are the source for the claim that John R. Lott does not own a gun? Oh, and where did you encounter those words? Did you hear them from his own lips or did you read them in something he wrote? I would remind you that whichever it is, Lott has a very poor repuration for honesty. He had this phoney sock puppet praising himself. The accusation that he completely fabricated a "survey" that supposedly underpins a bunch of his studies has not been successfully refuted by him. He may well not own a gun, but "his words" are an utterly unreliable source, wherever uttered.

Regarding the genocide discussion, you say "this is just a lie." What is? I was making fun of your claims. Of course it is a lie that the Germans disarmed the Jews before shipping them off and that Stalin disarmed the kulaks before starving them or Mao the peasants before starving them. There was no such disarming. They were not armed to begin with. Now, it is your argument that having guns would have prevented these deaths, but may I ask how owning a gun will prevent one from starving to death in a famine? And, the famine deaths out of that overblown 200 million number is more than 30 million. That is China alone. Also, the last time I saw someone pushing that 200 million figure they got to it by including all the WW II deaths and blaming them on Stalin. In any case, it is utter nonsense to claim that neither Hitler nor Stalin would have come to power if the people in those countries were armed. They both had a lot of support in their countries when they came to power. Get real.

Oh, and regarding the famines, it has been claimed by Ukrainian nationalists that the early 1930s one in USSR was aimed at them, but nobody has claimed that the larger one in China in the GLF was aimed at anybody.

I guess that will do for now.

the pistolero said...

Lots of people get temporarily depressed.

And because of this, the rights of the people who don't should be restricted. Gotcha.

Anonymous said...

Jesus H. Christ, Rosser, you are even a failure at being the most dishonest. I know one who is even more dishonest than you are. Not because he is your moral inferior but because he was smarter than you are.

you duck, dodge, mistate the facts, mistate the positions of others then offer your 'feelings' as proof? You pathetic piece of shit, just shut the fuck up.

I have known career criminals, in and out of organized crime, none of which I would invite to dinner, but all of which I respect more than I can you.

I would not be surprised to learn that you are a government employee who has graduated law school. Your ethics and morals are that low.

Anonymous said...

Classy, straightarrow, classy. (Although I do agree about the ehthics and morals of law school grads though).

Great arguements and statements of fact Rosserjb, keep it up. Unfortuantely you know that right wingers have no use for facts. Its all about primitive urges, emotions, grunts and whatever Ruch and Hannity tell them.

the pistolero said...

right wingers have no use for facts
So what about the lefties who think he's full of it?

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

The Man,

Thanks for your contribution.

the pistolero,

"Gotcha,"? Hardly. Lots of people who think they do not or will not get depressed to a suicidal level end up doing so. I have no problem partially restricting the rights of some to own handguns in order to save some others from committting suicide (probably several hundred a year in D.C. before this assinine Supreme Court ruling, whose suicide rate you have already declared you do not care for).

Um, have any clearly identified "lefties" disagreed with me on this thread? Can you name anyone specifically? Of course there are plenty of "lefties" who disagree with me about many things (see some of the other threads on this blog). Duh.

straightarrow,

Well, let us see. You accuse me of dishonesty, moral inferiority, and mistating the positions of others. You provide as specific examples of any of these a big fat zero.

Now, regarding the moral inferiority issue, I recognize that this is a matter of values, and if, for example, you consider anybody who opposes unrestricted freedom of gun ownershop to be morally inferior, then I plead guilty. If you have something else in mind, I suggest you provide specifics. As for the others, I doubt you can provide one single example.

For that matter, and this goes to the whole gaggle of you gun nuts who have spouted accusation after accusation against me without any specifics, including statements calling for me to die young and receive a caning from my distant relative, James Madison, among other delightful statements, I challenge the whole lot of you to provide a single example where I have either been dishonest or mistated anybody's position, one example. I have admitted in this discourse to having made mistakes (Obama's official positions on guns, although he never talks about it, evidence that I am right that he is not going to push it, and also the matter of the number of deaths by guns in suicides, which happen to turn out to be twice the number of death by guns in homicides in the US). Not a single one of you has had the honor or principle to apologize for making false accusations against me, not one. You who are guilty of this, and that most certainly includes you, "straightarrow," (talk about a lie for a name) should be ashamed of yourselves. But, as near as I can tell, scum like you do not apologize when you are shown to be wrong and lying about others.

I did not graduate from a law school. However, I am a state emloyee, being a professor of economics at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley, a state university.

mercurysis,

You have not contributed here in this round, but I have gone and checked up on your "battle of Athens, TN." Read both the first thing on the google hit, a very pro your position piece, and also the Wikipedia entry, that is a bit more circumspect. Pretty interesting.

So, in 1946, a group of WW II vets used guns seized from a government armory to regain control of a ballot box from a jail that had been seized by the corrupt sheriff of McMinn County in the mountains of Eastern Tennesse. A few people were wounded. Nobody was killed. What finally forced the sheriff to give up the ballot box that had the votes that threw him out of office was somebody tossing sticks of dynamite at the jail and destroying the doorstep, not the shots of the gunmen, who were not using their own guns for this. According to Wikipedia, some editorialists criticized these "heroes" for "taking the law into their own hands," although they had complained to higher authorities who had not responded, and it appears that McMinn County did get a better government out of this episode, the one that was indeed democratically elected.

First of all, this is not a particularly large scale or dramatic case of guns saving us from tyranny, and it was not their own guns but ones they seized from an armory, and in the end it was the dynamite and not the guns that did the trick. But, that aside, this proves not much. We have also had plenty of episodes in US history of various armed rebellions that were pretty silly and that were put down. Consider the Whiskey Rebellion, which I would not be surprised that some of you reading this might have great sympathy with. So, in 1794, whiskey producing farmers on the western frontier took their guns and rose up against a federal tax on whiskey. President George Washington responded by raising a militia to put the rebellion down.

What is the bottom line here? I see it as one of the reasons why the courts have traditionally favored the militia interpretation of the Second Amendment over the individualist interpretation.

Anonymous said...

Gun deaths per 100,000 population (for the year indicated):

Homicide Suicide Other

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(2002) 0.15 0.2 0.03
Scotland (2002) 0.06 0.2 0.02
Japan (2002) 0.02 0.04 0
_______________________________
"The level of gun ownership world-wide is directly related to murder and suicide rates and specifically to the level of death by gunfire."

Professor Martin Killias, May 1993.
_________________________________

"Data on suicide and firearms from other countries can be viewed as a warning to us in the form of some of the effects of firearm possession. Most articles show that the storage of a firearm in the home predicts an increased rate of a violent death."
_______________________________
"Worldwide, the majority of recent shooting massacres have been committed with legally-held weapons."
____________________________
In 1999, there were 28,874 gun-related deaths in the United States - over 80 deaths every day. (Source: Hoyert DL, Arias E, Smith BL, Murphy SL, Kochanek, KD. Deaths: Final Data for 1999. National Vital Statistics Reports. 2001;49 (8).)

the pistolero said...

Of course there are plenty of "lefties" who disagree with me about many things
I never said there weren't. Duh.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

The Man,

Thanks for the stats. They strongly support the idea that widespread gun ownership is closely correlated with suicide rates. The countries on your list that have gun-related suicide death rates closest to the US are Switzerland and Finland, also countries with high rates of gun ownership.

Anonymous said...

Very adept Rosser, very adept.

"it was not their own guns but ones they seized from an armory, and in the end it was the dynamite and not the guns that did the trick. But, that aside, this proves not much."

The people needed military quality weapons to overthrow a renegade government. Based on your conclusion, citizens should be able to own explosives as well as military rifles. You are defending the very things we are saying. The men who attacked the Sheriff's office most likely obtained M1 Garands from the armory, since that is the most commonly used by the USA in WWII. This very incident demonstrates the need for people to have these rifles. Why? What if instead of instead of locking themselves in the Sheriff's office, they locked themselves in the armory? How would the citizens be able to regain control from a renegade official?

But I should thank you for making our case for us, and not only that but suggesting that we should keep high-explosives on hand as well. You are smarter than I gave you credit for. Its impressive you've obtained such practical real-life wisdom considering you've never had to practice real life or deal with actual consequences but only theorize about them in your ivory tower.

Anonymous said...

Sorry about the font and spacing, it was fine when I cut and pasted it. Unfortunately a common problem with blogger.com.

Anonymous said...

Rosser, Its unfortunate that your critical reading hasn't followed your obtainment of actual wisdom. The Man's stats show GUN Suicide's per 100,000, not Suicide rates per 100,000. Of course when you look at GUN Suicide rate per 100k, countries with more guns will have a higher GUN Suicide rate. Compare Overall Suicide rates and that will demonstrate if nations with more gun-ownership have higher OVERALL Suicide rates.

Also, if you want an exhaustive study on crime as it relates to gun ownership, you have to look no further than the Kates-Mauser Study from Harvard Law. They examine crime, death and guns from nations all over the world as it relates to gun ownership. It is an incredibly reputable study unless you consider Harvard Law an un-reputable source...

Anonymous said...

I seem to recall a study conducted in the late 1980s and early 1990s (I apologize for not being able to quote it's source specifically), where the study's designers compared gun crime rates in 2 western towns. One had completely outlawed firearms within their city limits, and the other REQUIRED all males to carry or publically wear a firearm in their city.
To the surprise of the researchers, the crime rates were essentially identical! Maybe that is why this issue will never be solved soon by studies.....

AztecRed said...

"My estimate of the reduced number of deaths that would have occurred at VA Tech if the ban had still been in place was in fact based on the differences in the allowed magazine capacity of the guns used by Cho. Maybe it would not have been a third less, but reloading takes enough time for people to run and hide and so forth. It made a difference, even if we do not know the exact amount. "


Please watch this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GCDIfxHcJkw

How far could you run in that amount of time?

How about an amateur shooter like Cho:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTkUlTXnwIk

The slowest guy in the group changed magazines 3 times in apprx. 10 seconds. How far could you run in that amount of time during the magazine changes?

Restricting magazine capacity will not save lives. It will just increase magazine sales.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

SteveK,

Actually I tend to agree with the editorialists who criticized the "heroes" of the battle of Athens for taking the law into their own hands. The sheriff of McMinn County was corrupt, but a "tyrant"? A handful of people were involved in that situation. It is a minor joke. Sure, that one turned out not too badly, but there is a long list of armed uprisings that were not glorious battles against tyranny that ended badly, even if some involved in them thought they were and were using their guns in that way. The evil sheriff of Athens would have been overthrown one way or another. The guns and dynamite were not necessary.

Regarding the suicide issue, it is precisely the gun deaths by suicide that are the issue and the number to look at. There are lots of cross-cultural differences about suicide, such as in Japan where under certain circumstances suicide is honorable, and the rate of total suicides is relatively high, even as the rate of gun suicides is very low. This problem of cross-cultural differences is why it is more useful to look at cross-state data in the US, where the correlation between gun ownership and suicide gun deaths is very high, with the situation in D.C. being the poster boy, lowest rate of both gun ownership and suicide gun deaths in the country, although that will probably now change.

I am aware of the Harvard Law study, which finds ambiguous results for cross-country crime and gun comparisons. I have already agreed that the matter on that relationship is unresolved, as Ayres and Donohue argue and as is the view of the USNAS. The problem has been all the people like Lott running around to the legislatures telling them it is resolved in the direction of more gunds = less crime. Just how many times must I repeat this?

AztecRed,

Obviously you missed the later part of the discussion. I am repeating again, but this time for your benefit. So, the issue is not rapidity of reloading, which I suggested early on, but the number of bullets in a magazine, which is what was regulated for the kind of weapon Cho used under the AWB. I would say that it is reasonable to believe that Cho was going to fire off a certain number of magazines, irrespective of how many bullets each had. Thus, if each magazine had the fewer bullets they would have had under the AWB, fewer bullets would have been fired, and fewer people would have died at Virginia Tech.

Sorry, but blood is on the hands of those who overturned the AWB, and blood will be on the hands of the Supreme Court and all who agree with its decision to throw out D.C.'s anti-handgun law, with the problem in that case the almost certain rise in suicides by guns. Again, keep in mind that more than twice as many people in the US die of guns in suicides as die from guns in homicides.

Anonymous said...

Rosser; ""His own words" are the source for the claim that John R. Lott does not own a gun? Oh, and where did you encounter those words? Did you hear them from his own lips or did you read them in something he wrote?"

One lie. I never said he owned or did not own a gun or guns. I said he started his study with a preconceived notion in favor of strict gun control. Of course, you had to mistate what I said. That's dishonest.

Rosser;"Let me see, I remember now, Hitler carried out a massive disarming of the armed-to-the-teeth Jews of Germany and Poland prior to shipping them off to the camps. Stalin engaged in a massive disarming campaign of the armed-to-the-teeth Ukrainian kulaks before he killed off millions of them in the collectivization famines of the early 1930s (you were not counting that? You do not get anywhere near your 200 million without the famines). Mao engaged in a massive disarming of the armed-to-the-teeth Chinese peasants prior to the millions dying in the Great Leap Forward famines. Right."

Another lie, no one said the Jews were heavily armed, and Hitler had to disarm them in order to kill them. History says that the gun control acts of 1930's Germany made sure that the Jews could not arm, in order to defend themselves once they realized the murderous madness upon their land. But that doesn't fit your agenda so you ignore it. And you ignore the difference in the German government's fortunes when they faced a woefully underarmed bunch of skinny starving Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto. Held up an entire German division for more that two months. Of course, that doesn't fit your agenda either, so you pretend not to know of it. Another dishonesty.

As for the famines you intimate were a natural disaster and not due to oppressive government, you are either ignorant as a fence post or a damned liar. A true famine is shared by all. I seem to recall Mao as rather chubby, Stalin as stocky and well fleshed out. But the peasants in their countries had no way to circumvent governmental policies that kept them trapped in starvation. Why? Because they had no arms, and no way to obtain them. But of course, you must pretend that situation doesn't exist.

In most modern famines,lack of food is not the problem. Lack of distribution of food is the problem. Somalia is a perfect example of this. The warlords had the guns, they took control of all the food aid sent to Somalia from all over the world. They used food as a weapon. Those not in favor, didn't get any. And guess what there was no way to contest the issue, because the peasants were unarmed in the face of what passed for government there.

That is a whole reality that is common to a point you thought you made, yet you ignore its existence and pretend you don't know anything about it. That is another display of dishonesty.

Rosser said: "Thanks for the stats. They strongly support the idea that widespread gun ownership is closely correlated with suicide rates. The countries on your list that have gun-related suicide death rates closest to the US are Switzerland and Finland, also countries with high rates of gun ownership."

Again with the dishonesty, here is the main dishonesty; "Thanks for the stats. They strongly support the idea that widespread gun ownership is closely correlated with suicide rates."

Uh duh! Explain Japan, Sweden, The Netherlands where suicide rates are higher than ours or Switzerland's, and where they have almost no access to guns. In fact, Japan's suicide rate is the highest in the world and the average citizen has no access to firearms, at all. Then talk to me of Israel's suicide rate where everyone is armed with weapons of military utility and they are under constant terror attack, yet their suicide rate is a fraction of Japan's. C'mon smart guy, tell me again how you are not a dissembler.

And now this in the same paragraph by you; "The countries on your list that have gun-related suicide death rates closest to the US are Switzerland and Finland, also countries with high rates of gun ownership."

Explain to me how your intent there wasn't to mislead. I know you are accustomed to dealing with mush-brained children who have no critical thinking skills and probably think you are a learned man, erroneously, I might add, but please explain how that statement wasn't disingenuous.

I don't believe you can do that. Fact, gun suicide rates may or may not be a reflection of actual suicide rates. It is possible to have the highest "gun" suicide rate of any subset and yet have a lower actual suicide rate, simply because guns are not a common factor across all the subsets. Of course your lack of character and integrity allow you to skate in that dark land between truth and having your ass kicked. BTW, that only works in an academic environment and not always then. Your bullshit comment in that particular sentence is a lot like the Ford pickup truck commercial, isn't it? You know the one where the announcer says "Only Ford trucks are Ford tough." Uh, no shit! The statement means nothing. Much like what most of what you say does.

I could go on, but you are too arrogantly ignorant, or ignorantly arrogant for me to bother. As I have stated before,I don't give a good goddamned about you. I just want everyone else to know what a dishonest piece of shit you are.

I am not surprised that you teach. Some of the dumbest sonsofbitches I have ever known were capable of nothing else but taking advantage of young minds.

Barkley Rosser said...

straightarrow,

Regarding the matter of suicide gun death stats, pretty clearly you did not read my last comment. I did explain Japan. It is a cultural thing. It is honorable to commit suicide in Japan under certain circumstances, and the traditional method of seppuku is not with a gun. So, the relevant issue is to compare across states where culture is much more constant (and is what is relevant for US laws anyway). There the relationahip is stunningly clear.

I am not going to get back into your hallucinations about how many would have not died if there had been a massive arming of everybody on earth in the 1930s. I shall only repeat that the idea that starving peasants in China would have been able to avoid starvation if they had been armed is probably the stupidest thing said so far in this now way overly long thread.

Regarding Lott, you may not have said that he did not own a gun, but somebody did here. OK, so I forgot that it was not you, and that you were focusing on his alleged initially different attitude about guns, but the point of either of these claims (neither of which I have said a word about the truth or falsity of; I do not know), is to paint Lott as this objective truthseeker honestly following the data, implicitly in contrast with Ayres and Donohue or anybody else coming up with results that do not agree with those found by Lott. Right?

I may have goofed that you did not say he did not own a gun, but there was no conscious lyuing on my part, and you have yet to show an example of that as requested. In fact, I do not give a hoot one way or the other whether he owns a gun or not or what his attitude was once upon a time about guns. I am concerned with how he has done his studies and what his credibility is.

Which is where you have a big problem, "straightarrow." So, let us keep it straight. It is the claim that he once had a diffferent view about guns that you are pushing. You have very assertively and insultingly declared that I am some kind of incompetent researcher because I have been unable to find "his words" where he said this. I have asked you where those words could be found, but somehow you have not answered that question, either whether it was from his lips (I know that he has given lots of talks to gun nut crowds for the NRA for pay), or in some publication that one can find. Googling on the matter did not turn anything up.

So, where did he say it, "straightarrow"? Put up or shut up.

Now, of course we get to the really juicy part, and very frankly I am tiring of this having to repeatedly bash John R. Lott, whom I have never met and who may actually be a wonderfully moral person and nice guy. I do not know. But the source of your claim that he is this credible person who is so objective because he once had a different view of guns (and he may have for all I know) is HIS WORDS, wherever they might have been said verbally or printed in public.

But this is the problem, as I have now pointed out several times, and if you think I am being dishonest about this, go read his Wikipedia entry, which also says some very complimentarly things about John R. Lott. It reports this episode of him posing as "Mary Rosh" to puff his own work, reports what is also reported in the Ayres and Donohue study, that none of you gun nut critics have yet to put a remote dent in (worst criticism so far was by HC that they used an outdated excel sheet to show their results, which says nothing about the results themselves) that he distorted and manipulated a data series at the county level, and the even more serious charge of outright fabricating out of whole cloth an entire phoney data set claimed to be from a survey. Lott has publicly apologized for the Rosh sock puppet episode and has failed to refute these other charges.

How on earth do you have the gall to put this person up as somebody whose "word," wherever or however it was expressed or revealed (still a mystery to us) is to be taken even remotely seriously about anything? This is almost as stupid as saying Chinese peasants with guns would not have starved to death during the Great Leap Forward.

Let me conclude this on a very harsh note. The hard fact is that there is not a single economist in the entire world that I know of for whom I have less professional respect than John R. Lott. I have just stated the basis for that judgment, although the final piedce of it has been his suing Steve Levitt over disagreements, which I consider to be an utterly despicable way to engage in intellectual discourse. I know of no other who has pulled such totally outrageous and appalling misconduct and apparently massive dishonesty.

I would also warn all of you who have been so diligently bashing me while failing to address the points made in the attached study. Often in the past when I have posted on gun control, in fact John R. Lott, who has his own blog, has shown up to debate me, even though I have publicly stated in the past what my views are of him because of these matters that are very public knowledgge. I have debated quite reasonably with him (he is a very smart guy and knows a lot), and as I have said several times here, I have granted him his due on matters where I think he made valid points (and he has at a minimum succeeded in throwing serious doubt into the old claim that "more guns = more crime" necessarily).

But he has not shown up for this now bloated commentary. Why not? I do not think it is because of my harsh restatements of these matters that are public knowledge. It is possible he is not aware of this thread, but I doubt it. He seems to keep a pretty close eye on postings about guns in the blogosphere. No, I suspect that he has the same problem all the rest of you do; there is no easy refuting of the study I linked to by Ayres and Donohue. And that, folks, is a serious bottome line, whatever personal insults "straightarrow" or any of the rest of you wish to throw at me personally.

AztecRed said...

"Obviously you missed the later part of the discussion. I am repeating again, but this time for your benefit. So, the issue is not rapidity of reloading, which I suggested early on, but the number of bullets in a magazine, which is what was regulated for the kind of weapon Cho used under the AWB. I would say that it is reasonable to believe that Cho was going to fire off a certain number of magazines, irrespective of how many bullets each had. Thus, if each magazine had the fewer bullets they would have had under the AWB, fewer bullets would have been fired, and fewer people would have died at Virginia Tech."

Again, a magazine ban would have accomplished nothing. Cho could simply buy and carry more post-ban magazines or buy used pre-ban magazines. A magazine ban would not have reduced the number of rounds that could have been fired.

And the rest of the AWB ban was equally useless. It did more to annoy law-abiding gun owners than to prevent any type of crime.

Barkley Rosser said...

AztecRed,

Of course none of us can know for sure what Cho would have done, but it looks to me like your argument, that he could have bought more magazines, which is true in theory, was very unlikely in reality. That somehow presupposes that he had some specific number of bullets that he wanted to fire. I very much doubt that was how he was thinking.

It looks more like he wanted to kill as many as possible as fast as possible without being stopped on the way in. He did not care about going out as he probably intended to do what he did in the end anyway to himself. So, he wanted to carry it all inside his coat, powerful handguns with as many magazines as he could carry without being obvious and getting caught. If that is how he thought, then my argument still holds: he would buy a certain number of magazines that he thought he could carry, making the number of bullets per magazine important. Of course, I do not know if he used up all the magazines he had or not.

As for the AWB, I am sorry but I have no sympathy. I am fine with regular rifles and even handguns, although they seem to be the culprits in the suicide issue. But, can anybody explain to me why any law abiding citizen needs an assault weapon? Hunting? Target practice? Self-defense? And, please, do not tell me it is to save America from tyranny. All we have had from that argument since the American Revolution was the dinky battle of Athens, TN tale.

Anonymous said...

My God, Rosser. You are such a tool. and not a sharp one either.

You have to be one of the most shallow thinkers I have ever encountered. You're an embarrassment to humanity.

You need to stay in school. I somehow have the feeling you have spent your entire life in that protected and pretentious environment.

Please tell me you haven't bred.

Barkley Rosser said...

"staightarrow,"

I have three daughters, all doing well, and two grandsons, cute as buttons.

I shall not comment on your comments on the quality of my thought. I shall simply note that you have not put up, so I suggest you shut up. You have gone on at great and insulting length about "the words" of John R. Lott, how they prove his wonderfulness and how awful it is that we (or I) have been unable to track them down for you.

However, it has been asked of you, and now demanded of you, to provide a source for those "words," even though if you succeed, they will have zero credibility given his publicly available track record. You may declare me to be dishonest and whatever, but I have never come close to pulling any shenanigans on remotely the same order of magnitude of dishonesty as he has.

So, "straightrarrow," provide us a source for Lott's "words," or get lost. If you cannot do so, then you establish unequivocally that you are without any honor or principle, down in the toilet with your mentor.

Again, put up or shut up.

Anonymous said...

Rosser,

Do you know how magazines an average student back-pack could hold? My guess is nearly 50-60. It could also hold a few thousand rounds of 9mm pistol ammo, and 10 thousand rounds of .22LR. Sure it would be heavy, but when the goal is to kill as many as possibly I'm sure you are willing to put up with the weight.

Also, don't call them 'clips,' since they aren't clips they are magazines. There is a substantial difference between the two and mixing them up just makes you look even more ignorant than you already are.

And the 2A isn't about NEED, its about RIGHTS. Besides, most mis-labled "assault weapons" function identically to semi-auto wooden rifles. Clearly you didn't watch the video I suggested by the San Diego Police officer explaining what "assault weapon" is and why "assault weapon" is a mis-nomer based on aesthetics and not actual function. Most idiots think all black rifles are assault weapons. And thats why they are idiots, because they refuse to educate themselves to know the functional differences. Clearly, you are an idiot by those standards, as you refuse to learn or educate yourself for fear of losing you prejudice.

the pistolero said...

And the 2A isn't about NEED, its about RIGHTS
You're pretty much urinating in the wind here, Steve. This Rosser cretin has already in effect said he ultimately doesn't give a damn about anyone's rights.

Barkley Rosser said...

SteveK,

I do not believe I used the term "clips" in this regard. And if I had, so what?

Cho did not use a backpack. As I noted, he was making strategic calculations. Probably too much of a hassle for someone like him to puss them out of it. As it is, I think that only your fellow fully off-the-wall gun nuts will buy your implicit argument that if when Cho went in to buy those magazines he could only get ones with substantially lower capacity he would still have fired as many bullets as he did and killed as may people as he did.

pistolero,

I was faculty adviser of Amnesty International on my campus for 17 years and was involved in the civil rights movement in teh 1960s, alsong with other things I will not list. I have a high regard for human rights. I just do not view "gun rights" as the most important of those. Regarding assault weapons in particular, I agree with the police that there is (or should be) no general right for the general public to own such weapons, period.

Anonymous said...

Rosser,

You'd let the police who killed all these people (http://blogs.salon.com/0002762/stories/2003/08/17/drugWarVictims.html) define YOUR RIGHT to defend your life, when they don't value YOUR life?

Besides, allowing the Police to make or define what is necessary for self defence isn't right. They claim they have more rights than you do, as they take exception to themselves when gun control laws are instituted. Example: 'You only need high-cap mags if you need to kill a lot of people. Only the Police should have high-cap mags.' Thats a great non-sequitor for you. Heres another. 'Child-proof guns should mandated for all-people. Except police since they don't have children.' WTF? If police officer can't put their life on a child-proof gun, why should I have too?

Would you let the police define your Right to freedom of speech, religion or press? Being an activist for certain rights, you can clearly see why that isn't right.

Oh, and there's no such thing as an 'assault weapon' so stop using the god-damned phrase. There are assault rifles, which have full-auto capabilities but have been regulated for decades and are illegal to own without a tax stamp from the ATF. Watch the video put forth by the San Diego police officer who explains that there is no such thing and everyone who uses the term is an ignorant lemming.

By the way, you still didn't answer my question of what a Barrel Shroud is. My guess is that you still don't know. I guess ignorance is bliss.

the pistolero said...

I was faculty adviser of Amnesty International on my campus for 17 years
Which means precisely jack and shit to me. I'm sure you probably think future Holocausts are going to be prevented by candlelight vigils and empty platitudes about "encouraging awareness" too. Complete and utter tools, the lot of you. But then again, maybe not. A tool actually has some use.

the pistolero said...

Being an activist for certain rights

Well yeah, but some rights are apparently more equal than others.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

SteveK,

I find your obsession with precisely correct terminology to be hilarious.

I have no problem with limiting the most high-powered weapons to legally constituted authorities. Police sometimes have to battle large gangs. I am sure that you can tell me about Gun Joe Schmoe somewhere or other who used an "assault rifle" to save himself and some others from some heavily armed gang, but I also have little doubt that such cases are far and few between and the lives saved are way outnumbered by the lives lost by people committing suicide with the guns they bought to protect themselves. Do keep in mind that twice as many people die per year in the US from gun-related suicides as from gun homicides.

pistolero,

You are right. I do rank some rights higher than others. Most advanced countries now agree with the US and grant some variation on our First Amendment. While there are other countries that have widespread gun ownership, I cannot name a single one that asserts gun ownership to be a fundamental right. Can you name one? Most of those among the higher income, more law-abiding countries tend to still regulate them, as in Switzerland where they have a universal draft for males, and those coming out of the military keep their gun.

Name a single other country that guarantees their citizens an unrestricted right of gun ownership as a constitutional, fundamental right, one, please, or go the way of "straightarrow."

Unknown said...

rosserbj:

I have not participated in your "round" because I have a life. Nice try at spinning the numbers though.

To people with common sense, 17,000 versus 45,000 is not the same level. If suicides were high 30s then yes, but not roughly 1/3 people don't care about "orders of magnitude".

You could claim that restrictive gun laws prevent suicides based on D.C. numbers but using the numbers of one city does not provide enough support for that claim. Besides that you have the number of homicides in those cities compared to those with less restrictive laws (you can't claim that all large cities have them).

Ah yes, the magazine capacity now makes it an "assault weapon". Oh I am so sorry, you are incorrect. Nice try in redefining what what an "assault weapon" was defined as which was:

Semi-automatic pistols with detachable magazines and two or more of the following:
*Magazine that attaches outside the pistol grip
*Threaded barrel to attach barrel extender, flash suppressor, handgrip, or silencer
*Barrel shroud that can be used as a hand-hold
*Unloaded weight of 50 oz (1.4 kg) or more
*A semi-automatic version of an automatic firearm

Seeing as his pistols do not meet any of these (the magazines attached inside the grip, neither were based on an automatic firearm, etc.) they cannot be defined as "assault weapons".

So then if a majority of people were to say that the earth was flat, that would make it so? I don't think so.

We are a constitutional republic which is defined as "a state where the head of state and other officials are elected as representatives of the people, and must govern according to existing constitutional law that limits the government's power over citizens. In a constitutional republic, executive, legislative, and judicial powers are separated into distinct branches and the will of the majority of the population is tempered by protections for individual rights so that no individual or group has absolute power. The fact that a constitution exists that limits the government's power makes the state constitutional. That the head(s) of state and other officials are chosen by election, rather than inheriting their positions, and that their decisions are subject to judicial review makes a state republican; should the judicial review be maximized."

We are not a democracy is defined as "a system in which a majority vote rules everything and everyone, and in which the individual thus has no rights."

Even our pledge of allegiance states that we are a republic, hello? To state otherwise is silly.

As for the battle of Athens, I don't know why they didn't use their own firearms. Regardless they used them to bring down an enemy which was a corrupt sheriff. Yes they did get a better sheriff by voting but that would not have happened if they had not fought back. Just because it was not large scale or dramatic it still falls under what the founding fathers meant for the 2nd to do. You cite the Whiskey Rebellion, which was a joke. Nearly 13,000 federal soldiers (as large as the one that had defeated the British) could only round up 20 - 150 prisoners of which only 2 were arested and jailed (one was released and the other died in jail). Along with the fact that it help turn people away from the Federalist Party (powerful central government) and eventually the repeal of the tax. It only proves that a government is not going to just step down because of an uprising.

As for the courts "traditionally" favoring a collective interpretation of the 2nd that was done by judges too dense to understand plain english (sound like you) or ones that had agendas (sounds like you also).

the pistolero said...

Name a single other country that guarantees their citizens an unrestricted right of gun ownership as a constitutional, fundamental right

Why should I? I really don't care if they do or not. It matters to me not one iota. And if you really understood the concept of "rights," it wouldn't matter to you either.

the pistolero said...

Oh, and thanks for kinda-sorta lumping me in with Straightarrow. He's a good guy.

Anonymous said...

Rosser,

I find your obsession with precisely correct terminology to be hilarious.

Guess what dipshit, names and terminology matter, especially dealing with mechanical devices. You've clearly never done a days work in your life. Otherwise you'd know that tools have very specific names and uses. You may call a shovel a shovel, but realize that someone who knows about shovels will call them spade, coal-shovel, snow-shovel. There nearly a dozen different types of wrenches, socket-wrench, allen-wrench, torque wrench, crescent-wrench...etc. If you were to work on a farm like I did while in college, you would know that everything has a name because everything has a different function. Now as an engineer, the terms are even more complex and more varried. Precise terminology is required in real-life. Precise terminology is also required in the field of LAW, so how would you define an assault weapon by physical features only? Precise terminology. So, whats a Barrel Shroud and why should it be illegal?

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

mercurysys,

Regarding "at the same level" and "same order of magnitude," I did not use the former term as a matter of very conscious choice. People who are not ignorant know the difference. Of course the comparison with auto deaths is irrelevant, while the comparison with gun homicides is all too relevant. Again, bottom line, twice as many deaths in sucides by using guns than gun homicides. Deal with it.

I posted some time ago here on the matter of suicides and guns (fortunately, you did not show up to make a fool of yourself then). I presented more detailed evidence, which I saw no reason to repeat. Of the top five states in gun ownership and suicide rates, three were overlapping, and for the bottom five on both lists, four were overlapping. I was aware of D.C. in particular as it was rock bottom on both lists, as I noted here. But the evidence goes way beyond D.C. and is overwhelming. Sorry you are fool of it on this one. Deal with it.

Oh, and where did you cherry pick your "definitions" of republic and democracy? Whichever is correct, what does this have to do with this debate anyway? Does this address in the slightest the data and analysis in the paper I linked to? No.

Regarding the battle of Athens, again, if this is the best you can do for the argument that we need super gun rights in order to defend ourselves against tyranny in the US, it is pretty pathetic.

And we know, and most people do not care, that you value gun rights over all others. This is what makes you a gun nut.

pistolero,

We already know that people who worship gun rights over all others are nuts, and you with your links to "rapex" and other great stuff, along with your callous attitude to suicides in D.C. seem to be one of the worst. Tell us, do you drool and quiver while playing with your guns and watching rapex?

Again, the question is what is a fundamental right. I would say, and I am sure the overwhelming majority would agree, that rights widely recognized around the world are more fundamental than one recognized as such in exactly one country. (Oh, and there may be some others that do, I have not checked, but I am sure the number is very small, and may well be zero.)

SteveK,

Terminology about guns may matter if you are selling guns or training people in their use. But we are debating gun laws. Exact terminology in this case is pretty much irrelevant, unless we are getting into precise details of exactly which guns are to be restricted or not. But I do not care much about that debate in its details. My main fish to fry has been to block the move in the Virginia legislature to ease up rules about where guns of various sorts can be carrried. You are just making a fool of yourself with your obsession on this matter.

the pistolero said...

Tell us, do you drool and quiver while playing with your guns and watching rapex?
Let's get some misconceptions out of the way here...
1. I have no idea what rapex is, so I fail to see how that's really germane to the discussion.
2. I can't remember the last time I drooled or quivered for any reason whatsoever. Drooled, maybe when I was an infant. Quivered....probably never.
3. I do not play with my guns. They are tools, not toys, and as such should be respected. They are a hell of a lot of fun at the range when used in the proper manner though.
Wow. For someone who fancies himself a liberal you're just drop-dead amazingly intolerant and bigoted. And apparently damn insecure, considering the weight you give to others' opinions of what rights should be respected. Maybe it's best that you go unarmed, considering how you like to shoot off at the mouth, but I don't understand why you and all the rest of the hoplophobes have to project those attitudes on the rest of us.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

pistolero,

I did not check it out, but I was told offlist by someone I trust that rapex is a link to the one you suggested Roberta go look at, and that the one you suggested itself was pretty sickening. This individual said it was horrifying and that it was the clearest evidence around that indeed some of the commentators here are insane. But I guess we should take your word that you are well-behaved, reasonable, law-abiding, upstanding citizen, and all the rest, even if you advise people to link to sicko-psycho websites.

the pistolero said...

the one you suggested itself was pretty sickening.
Whaaa...? Dave Grossman is an ex-Army Ranger and in that link he was offering his thoughts on armed combat. If you thought that was sickening at all, let alone as sickening as this "rapex" thing, whatever it may be, well, that says more about you than it does about me.

rosserjb@jmu.edu said...

pistolero,

Well, this thread has now scrolled off and so probably won't be read anymore. However, I have been told by the person who complained to me offline that this link, which is called "rape-ax" now, was not suggested by you. I frankly did not link to Grossman's and did not link to any of the rest of it. I do have a life, and I do not go to such sites at all.

Sorry that all this scrolled off before this could be more publicly clarified, but I think my co-bloggers were nauseated by this whole thread.

I will close by saying that I shall take your word that you are an OK guy, and I am sure that your word on this matter is at least as good as the "word" of "straightarrow" that the "word" of John R. Lott that His Words are to be believed on gun matters and his own personal history...

Anonymous said...

I never said I liked Lott. I merely said you lied about his position when he started out.

As for your daughters, I sincerely hope they aren't yours.

I told you I didn't take you to raise, and I'll not waste time presenting you with data that you have demonstrated time and again you will dismiss as not counting, much like you did the difference between a democracy and a constitutional republic. The fact that you don't know the difference and don't care is a damning indictment of your intellect and character.

In the interest of not wasting any more time on a damned evil fool, this will be my last comment here. Go commit a physical impossibility and quit masturbating in public.

AztecRed said...

"Of course none of us can know for sure what Cho would have done, but it looks to me like your argument, that he could have bought more magazines, which is true in theory, was very unlikely in reality. That somehow presupposes that he had some specific number of bullets that he wanted to fire. I very much doubt that was how he was thinking. It looks more like he wanted to kill as many as possible as fast as possible without being stopped on the way in. He did not care about going out as he probably intended to do what he did in the end anyway to himself. So, he wanted to carry it all inside his coat, powerful handguns with as many magazines as he could carry without being obvious and getting caught. If that is how he thought, then my argument still holds: he would buy a certain number of magazines that he thought he could carry, making the number of bullets per magazine important. Of course, I do not know if he used up all the magazines he had or not."

Well, if Cho's goal was to kill as many as people as possible, if there were a magazine ban in place at the time, he would only need one extra diminished capacity magazine to achieve the same number of rounds carried. Considering the amount of premeditation Cho went through, that's hardly a stretch of imagination. It's not like Cho just snapped and used whatever he had on hand. He deliberately equipped himself to do what he did.


"As for the AWB, I am sorry but I have no sympathy. I am fine with regular rifles and even handguns, although they seem to be the culprits in the suicide issue. But, can anybody explain to me why any law abiding citizen needs an assault weapon? Hunting? Target practice? Self-defense? And, please, do not tell me it is to save America from tyranny. All we have had from that argument since the American Revolution was the dinky battle of Athens, TN tale."

You can assault someone with any kind of weapon. Anything you can do with a "non-assault weapon", you can do with an "assault weapon". That makes the phrase "assault weapon" both redundant and intellectually dishonest. So if you're going to ban "assault weapons", it should be accompanied with ban on all weapons. Otherwise, it's just a piece of useless, feel-good legislation designed to do nothing but move us one more step towards total disarmament by getting rid of the "scary looking" guns first.

As for need, it's a Bill of Rights, not a Bill of Needs.

Firehand said...

"You are right. I do rank some rights higher than others. Most advanced countries now agree with the US and grant some variation on our First Amendment. While there are other countries that have widespread gun ownership, I cannot name a single one that asserts gun ownership to be a fundamental right."

That word pretty much tells me how you see this. The framers of the Constitution were pretty outspoken that neither the Constitution nor the government 'granted' those rights; that they simply belong to a free people. The Bill of Rights simply listed some that were considered so vital to a free people and society that they should be given special notice.

You'd call me a gun nut, and all the other names you decided to throw out without knowing anything about me and others like me. I do not consider the right noted in the 2nd Amendment the only important one; I think they're ALL important. And none of them are to be bartered or given away simply because some feel threatened by them, or don't like them.

By the way, I can't remember the citations, but in English common law, from which much of our law came, it was pretty much stated as a fundamental right of free men to own arms. The British started losing that in the early 1900's, and it has not served them well to have it taken away.

Anonymous said...

MA has some of most restrictive laws in the nation but violent crime has continued to increase (see http://www.goal.org/news/truth.htm). The laws simply do not work as intended.

Also review the table http://www.jpfo.org/filegen-a-m/deathgc.htm#chart outlining the impact of restricting, then eventually confiscating, guns in other countries.

Most violent crime committed with firearms is not by law-abiding folks.

Anonymous said...

I am so proud of all of you! I think it's wonderful that Retarded Americans have their own website. High Five!