Saturday, December 15, 2012

Gun Control Debate

Chrystia Freeland (@cafreeland), James Carville, Mike Murphy (@murphymike), Bill Maher (@billmaher).

Here's a clip from the January 14, 2011 episode of HBO Real Time discussing gun control after the Gabrielle Giffords shooting of January 8, 2011.


Just One Voice said...

How about this? Everyone who thinks they need an assault weapon to "protect" himself or herself can move to a beautiful, tropical island (we'll name it "Moron Land"). They can bring with them as many high-powered, semi-automatic weapons they wish to have. You know, for "protection." They can hang the confederate flag as their official banner and can recite the Second Amendment every morning as their official pledge of allegiance.

As they live on this island, you know, "protecting" themselves, they won't even notice that their population numbers are mysteriously dropping at a very quick pace...even as population numbers in every other corner of the world are growing.

(Or, if they do happen to notice, they'll claim it is just "demographics," or they'll say that there are just too many guns to try to eliminate them, or they'll say that their pledge of allegiance, the Second Amendment, should absolutely be protected, honored, and glorified at all costs, even though it was written more than two hundred years ago with the SOLE purpose of allowing pioneer militia men to defend themselves against British soldiers and hostile Native Americans.)

They'll continue on like this until just one proud gun-owner remains, the "King of the Mountain." And, he can live there, surrounded by all of his millions of guns, in absolute ecstasy and enjoyment. He can polish and shine all of his guns every day, just in case there is further need to "defend" himself.

M McCrae said...

The assault weapon debate is just - done. Any reason concocted to justify why these weapons should be in the hands of any individual pales in comparison to the devastation this "right" wreaks on society.
We continue to politicize this topic because people are avid gun collectors? Collect something else - like stamps. Your hobby is too costly for the rest of us.
It isn't just gun control though, is it? It's the general care we invest in the disenfranchised - aka those who don't fit in or pull their own weight.
Healthcare, particularly mental health care, is debated as if human health & well-being is a commodity. Sadly, it's exactly what it is in this country.
As tragedy after tragedy inevitably unfolds, the media captures the rush of humanity that comes in its wake. It's the same humanity that is so desperately needed in daily life - not just when the cameras are there to capture it. One famous victim of gun violence once said, "If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich."
These issues, mixed with a dash of genetics and the prime environment, make for a potent cocktail. A very expensive one.
It is a disservice to victims to distance ourselves from these acts - to refer to those who carry out violence as evil, crazy, or madmen. There is a social agreement that these situations are tolerable, even acceptable, in order to protect a misinterpreted, antiquated amendment or make more and more money by cutting social services (entitlements) to the bone. That is the evil we seek but no one wants to look because it's about the choices we make and priorities we set in our country.
"If not now ...when?" Indeed.

wayner said...

So the freedom for civilians to buy and possess military grade lethal weapons had now degenerated to the point of massacring little kids. Here in Canada owning guns is a lot more hassle and a civilian definitely can't waltz out of a gun shop with an assault rifle. Most of the gun murders are between gangs and criminals who own illegal weapons anyway.
-Of course the gun nuts in the USA will trot out their same old tired arguments for their right to own a 50 caliber machine gun, but the statistics speak for themselves; countries that have reasonable limitations and qualifications for gun ownership (not a total ban) have hugely lower rates of gun homicides. DUH!

kokoflom said...



Mark said...

Maybe if Republicans did not block single payer universal health care for all, these murderers could have had easy free access to mental health. Maybe they would have gotten help and not reached for weapons. Blocking healthcare now bites the Republicans in the ass. Has anyone else thought of that?

Mark said...

I am a liberal person and registered Democrat. However, I have extensive training and education on firearms from my time serving this country. A big part of the problem is that so many of us liberals are clueless when it comes to firearms. All of the above posters clearly do not know what they are talking about. We need to have someone who is knowledgeable on firearms take on the NRA and the right. And we need someone who is knowledgeable write any new laws.

I keep hearing people bring up the "Assault Weapons Ban" from the 1990's. That law was so ineffective it wasn't funny. There were so many easy ways around it. It really did not ban or stop anything. It sounds like people think that was good and want to bring it back. Because people do not even know what makes a firearm an "assault weapon" or even what is a revolver, pistol, semi-automatic weapon, automatic weapon, sub-machine gun, machine gun, etc. Or even know what the differences are.

Before people get all worked up and start screaming at each other (like Piers Morgan did) they need to educate themselves on the topic. Know what they are talking about. I don't understand how some people can be so passionate about a topic (like Piers) but have no education, training, or experience on the topic. People look really stupid when they start screaming about how they want automatic weapons banned. Because they already are banned. Or "I want assault weapons banned." OK, gun owners will just take the pistol grip off and it won't be an assault weapon anymore. This is what happened under the "Assault Weapons Ban."

So please people let's get educated. That way the right can be debated better and more effective and better working laws can be written.

David Groen said...

This is the piece I wrote called "Guns and Tragedies: A Common Partnership"

wayner said...

Speaking of the 'tired arguments' against gun control I gag when I hear how we just need to be 'educated' about firearms. (no wonder Piers was getting angry at the moron who wrote a book about how wonderful guns are) Firearms are pretty simple; load, aim, and pull the trigger, not too hard for the Halo whizzes these days.
-The bottom line is this; all military grade weapons should be banned for civilians, and people should have to jump through a lot of hoops before they can own legal ones. The Police have a tough enough job as it is without confronting military weapons. Crazy people are scary enough behind the wheel of a car let alone in possession of lethal weapons.

Anonymous said...

When is the government going to get off there ass and do something!!! now there is no excuse to pass stricter gun laws, there is no reason to have assault weapons or weapons with more than ten rounds, hell if your that poor a shot you shouldn't own a gun... also keep the nuts locked up!!

Mark said...

@ Wayner,

Thank you for proving my point for me. Your post shows your ignorance and how it is ineffective against what you want. Also, you missed the entire point of my post. THIS JUST IN WAYNER, I AM ON YOUR SIDE.

You want "military grade" weapons banned. I have great news for you! They already are!

The Bushmaster that was used in the school shooting is not, as you like to say, "military grade." If it was, it would have the capability to fire a 3 round burst or be fully automatic. Plus, it would probably have different sights.

My point is, we need educated people in Congress or wherever to make effective change. Write laws that ban how guns operate and/or entire families of types of guns. That assault weapons ban people keep bringing up never banned a single gun. It banned a grip. Grips were changed and the guns were still available. And ignorant people like yourself were non the wiser.

Mark said...

@ Wayner,

I just realized by your above first post that you are Canadian. What is so great about 2012, and as The W. once said, "The Google on the Internets," is that you can so quickly and easily disprove someone or show how they are flat wrong. You said one cannot own an "assault weapon" in Canada. Here is a Canadian in Canada with her assault weapons:
(At the 0:40 second mark it appears she is shooting a similar type of weapon that was used in Connecticut. At the 4:50 mark the Canuck is shooting an AK-47 with a 30 round mag and a folding stock).

Did I just blow your mind?

Lots of other countries people do own firearms of all different types. Yes, it is a lot more difficult to obtain them and the vetting process is more elaborate. As one Canadian I read said, "Canada doesn't want stupid people owning guns." WHICH IS WHAT WE NEED HERE IN THE UNITED STATES. I shouted that so no one confuses me as a "gun nut." But those countries do not have near the problems the U.S. does (i.e.: I just want to set the record straight. There is too much BS from both sides on this issue.

patrick said... started as a website for donations for hurricane sandy. It now includes victims of Sandy Hook Elementary School. A donation would be great, but a little publicity would be even better.

Tromis said...

Just watched this video , Found it interesting that the shooters father was supposed to testify before the senate about the libor scandal, same as the shooters father in Colorado, why is no one covering this

Sultan said...

DoodleyDude said...

I have the solution!

Leave everything as is, but tax the living shit out of ammunition!
People will be much much more conservative about where their bullets are going if they cost $50+ a round.

..this has the added effect of helping with the deficit too.

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Anonymous said...


Who's more dangerous to innocent Americans living in the Us?

Al Queda or the Republican NRA propaganda?

hint: the latter has accomplished what the former has failed to accomplish in over a decade of trying.

wayner said...

@ Mark; I can assure you a civilian Canadian cannot easily purchase an assault rifle in Canada; it is a restricted weapon but there are some exemptions for 'collectors' who take courses and attend a gun club. It is just as difficult to own a handgun. And I don' give a flying f**k if the rifle can shoot a 3 round burst or fully auto; a semi-auto assault rifle can quickly empty a magazine just by rapidly pulling the trigger.
-Crazy people and morons with lethal military style weapons have no place in civilized society period. The USA has the stats to prove it being no 1 in the world with civilian gun homicide rates. The reason most democratic and free countries have sane gun laws is to keep irrational people away from them for the protection of society in general. As for home defense a 911 call on the cell is a better defense and may keep you from defending yourself in a court room.

SurvivorSean said...

I'm a Canadian as well, never owned a gun, and got rid of all my dad's. Bottom line is driving a car can be pretty lethal too, that's why you have to pass tests to have the right. I don't think those writing the 2nd Amendment ever intended it to protect the rights of every citizen including those with mental handicaps to go out and defend themselves against a government that would turn on them.

That being said perhaps instead of just shedding tears at this tragedy, ask yourself how many kids die due to casualties of war, drones, or whatever excuse can be brought up all over the world. I know we are fighting terrorism. We were also fighting forces of evil who had weapons of mass destruction once too.

Hey I'm your side too, I lean more to the left and feel you need better restrictions on owning ALL weapons period! Owning a vehicle in many cases could be just as lethal. What's stopping someone who is out of their mind decide to pull down a park and mow down kids with their car? Hey they can do that in the video games!

But before that let the government lead by example and pull out of these stupid state police BS, bring the troops home. Spend more money on health care, and hey a little security by people who know what guns are and know how to use them wouldn't be so bad.

Then perhaps making sure those that have weapons are registered, just like a vehicle can. It's not going to stop every bad incident in the world, but it sure as hell isn't going to hurt anyone.

Mark said...

@ Wayner,

From what I gather by searching online, yes obtaining any firearm in Canada is a lengthy and time consuming process. I DO think that the U.S. should adopt some of the Canadian ways. It is a good idea to make all gun owners take classes. Also, have them go through a more thorough vetting process. As well as other ideas. And free health care would be nice too.

However, from what I gather online and also what you mentioned, I completely disagree with not being able to literally and legally deafened oneself inside of their own home. American laws are completely different and pretty clear on this. Most states in America have the "Castle Doctrine." And odds are one will not be prosecuted for fighting off a bad guy inside of their own home. What I gather online, Canada is a completely different story. Hell, in some states the "Castle Doctrine" extends outside of the home. In Texas there have been cases where people have shot bad guys on their front lawn dead. They were never arrested or prosecuted. I know one case was recent and there is audio recordings of the entire incident you can look up. I have worked in the Criminal Justice System and legal field here in the U.S. and I know first hand you cannot always count on 911 to get there anytime soon.

Mark said...

Here is something interesting that has been underreported. Apparently, the shooter in Portland was confronted by a civilian with a legally concealed firearm. After the bad guy saw the guy trying to line him up in his sights, he retreated and shot himself. This should be reported more. This guy is really a hero:

Anonymous said...

1) Immediately recall all troups from Germany, Japan, Africa, Alaska and Italy. They are not a threat. Post one in each school to defend the children. It won't cost a dime and the money will stay within the country. If those who don't pay their share of taxes still need to protect their investments They can hire them using unpaid tax money.
2) Amend the 2nd amendment. It is out of date and has nothing to do with todays society. It was written before germs were known.
3) Buy back all semi automatic weapons and hand guns over the next 2 months and then impose a 10 year jail sentence for ownership and 25 years for use of a gun in a crime.
4)toughen the proceedure to buy a single shot rifle - the only fire arm allowed.
5)Deal with mental illness through a national program. You shouldn't have to sell your home to save your child.

wayner said...

About mental illness; I'm a retired guy and I remember in my youth always being outside hanging around with friends. No cell phones and no computers. Today's youth growing up in front of screens with over-protective helicopter parents controlling every facet of their lives guarantees screwed up kids. They need to get out in the real world, enjoy nature, meet real people face-to-face, and learn from their mistakes. The mental health of our youth is a digital experiment that IMO is going badly for a large percentage, with stressed-out over-stimulated young brains trying to cope with a tsunami of information. No wonder psychos are going nuts with guns.

Anonymous said...


Republicans: 666
Al Qaeda: 0

(Just kidding. But when you tally the actual number of innocent Americans killed in the US,
include Lee Harvey Oswald, who clearly voted Republican.)


Anonymous said...


The military industrial complex involved not only campuses of facilities but also a sociopathic superiority complex grounded in hero-worship of war criminal Curtis Lemay. If you didn't hero-worship Curtis Lemay, they didn't open the club door to let you in.

Since those days of Ike's warning and the present, this sociopathic psychological complex has cross-bred into a full-blown MILITARY INDUSTRIAL REPUBLICAN MOB FAMILY UNDERWORLD COMPLEX.


After all, who would benefit absolutely the most from the Republican dream of a savage, rule-of-the -gun society?


The mob.

LHO could not be allowed to testify about MIRMFUC.


Mr. Visket said...

Readers: you are more than capable of accessing the Uniform Crime Report from the FBI as it is public knowledge. you might be pleased or displeased with the impact that these wrongly named* Assault Weapons have on crime. My state has had an ongoing AWB (California) they are used 2-8% of crimes whether or not you include suicide as a crime. It is not 2nd Amendment this or that. FACTS = FACTS...Irrationalities aside you must see through the hype, rhetoric and non-sense. i applaud those that will actually utilize their right as citizens to access public knowledge and ignore those that do not.

kamera cctv said...

So the freedom for civilians to buy and possess military grade lethal weapons had now degenerated to the point of massacring little kids. Here in Canada owning guns is a lot more hassle and a civilian definitely can't waltz out of a gun shop with an assault rifle. Most of the gun murders are between gangs and criminals who own illegal weapons anyway.
-Of course the gun nuts in the USA will trot out their same old tired arguments for their right to own a 50 caliber machine gun, but the statistics speak for themselves; countries that have reasonable limitations and qualifications for gun ownership (not a total ban) have hugely lower rates of gun homicides. DUH! kamera cctv murah
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Anonymous said...

There seems to be so much confusion about why we are in this situation with gun control. I think of an analogy comparing it to a child to picking his own diet. Laws uptill now have been so laxed. Thus people can buy semi-automatic machine guns, large bullet carrying clips and don't even need much of a background check to do so (so the kid eats candy, cake and burgers/pizza every chance they can get). As a result we have a overweight fat kid with type II diabetes, high cholesterol and arthritis (school, movie and senator shootings). We want to step in and intervene on this disease, but the child won't have it. We are only saying that its ok to have sweets and burgers/pizza once in a while as a treat, but not every meal (and or you can still own a handgun, but there will be some limits and regulations). Thus preserving your rights.

Anonymous said...

According to the FBI annual crime statistics, the number of murders committed annually with hammers and clubs far outnumbers the number of murders committed with a rifle.
This is an interesting fact, particularly amid the Democrats' feverish push to ban many different rifles, ostensibly to keep us safe of course.
However, it appears the zeal of Sens. like Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) is misdirected. For in looking at the FBI numbers from 2005 to 2011, the number of murders by hammers and clubs consistently exceeds the number of murders committed with a rifle.
Think about it: In 2005, the number of murders committed with a rifle was 445, while the number of murders committed with hammers and clubs was 605. In 2006, the number of murders committed with a rifle was 438, while the number of murders committed with hammers and clubs was 618.
And so the list goes, with the actual numbers changing somewhat from year to year, yet the fact that more people are killed with blunt objects each year remains constant.
For example, in 2011, there was 323 murders committed with a rifle but 496 murders committed with hammers and clubs.
While the FBI makes is clear that some of the "murder by rifle" numbers could be adjusted up slightly, when you take into account murders with non-categorized types of guns, it does not change the fact that their annual reports consistently show more lives are taken each year with these blunt objects than are taken with Feinstein's dreaded rifle.
Another interesting fact: According to the FBI, nearly twice as many people are killed by hands and fists each year than are killed by murderers who use rifles. This is why a gun ban will never work.

david said...

You can have my gun when your man Obama stops murdering americans without trial with jet powered flying robot assasins. Fer pete's sake!!!

Anonymous said...

God you guys are fuckin stupid.

Clayton Evans said...

Hey, this is from Clay, look out for your 6th amendments rights, here in Montana the Federal Judges such as Richard Cebul who sent the sexual perverted e-mail to our President about the President"s mother sexual behavior, he gives the 6th the finger along with Jessica Pugrud another Federal Judge, A lot of attorneys here laugh about the worthless congressmen and senators , they have thier own guns too (they don"t work and can"t be fired also)

KC said...

Mr.Maher, I hope you read this.
I'm as conservative as you are liberal. But on our rights you are on target. And we must all stand together. You know some of our leaders, give them an inch and they'll take a mile. The only thing is the 2nd ammendment was put in plase for the people to resist a tyrannical government and also for the people to protect themselves. As you know they get a foot hold and they will move forward.I am a retired police officer. Unlike some of my colleges peoples rights were always immportant to me. My thinking was if I violate thier rights, what keeps someone else from violating mine? I have been on the business end of a gun more than once. Been shot at more than once. Had three of my friends killed in the line of duty. In all the cases the person was a criminal and obtained a gun by means other than the leagal route. Ive alway said I dont fear an honest man with a gun. I've had more than a couple of time where i was out numbered and a good person from the community stopped and helped me because they had a legal gun. when it comes to our rights I dont think we can pick and choose because at some time the person choosing may not make changes in our best interest. Thats republicans and democrates. I hope you could agree. Thanks, Kevin

Nicholas Richards said...

i have a comment on this topic, and also about the episode that premiered this 11th season.

some things have to be acknowledged off the bat: usa = gun country = violent country, etc. in the most recent episode, bill compared the 3rd amendment with the 2nd. they are indeed both anachronistic.

however, bill you should elaborate on our side of the anachronism, not just disregard it because it's not ours.

our gun culture now compared with gun culture during the writing of the bill o rights, is not too complex and worth saying imo.

now, we own guns as indivuals -- then, they owned guns as a community.
now, we consume guns as a commodity -- then, they consumed guns as a necessity.
now, we are desperate, isolated, debt-ridden, eternally competitive, slaves of capitalism -- then, they participated in a lot less commerce, and communally provided services, though they were poor and hungry. now, the people we murder are

the solution is not to change fringe ass gun laws, but to reinvest in american communities, and giving them actual democratic control over their communities, aka the production and distribution of resources that they depend on. perhaps most importantly, the organization of businesses needs to be fundamentally changed. equality and democracy begin at the workplace.

This is something that i believe to be true, and hope starts to get some publicity.

if you chastise others for not seeing the truth (as this show often does), i chastise those that don't see this one.

we are a gun country. its a mantra we robotize from our culture, and our leaders make no effort to push for rationality.

we are a capitalist society. the same thing.

Anonymous said...

Cant wait to meet you Bill ..King Crimson the Devil 777..i dont believe in church either...but i believe in you little ugly puny soul...the DEVIL..formanly known as King James...Jesus'es Lord...a little nigger as well

Anonymous said...

Oh By the way love the movie Bill

Anonymous said...

Hey bill here's some insite for you you little nigger...take a look at the band rush...their see Neil Peart was my conductor over my Royal musicians...he placed a clock out there for you all ..a Witches Clock..the witching hour is take a look at the time you ballsy little bitch...because your going to MY HELL...I built this worls Bill..and Brought all life to it...even your Nigger soul...your test is over..Welcome to the Crimson Palice Prick..I'm going to teach you about GOD

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