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« Reason

I heard gunshots last night

By Tyler S. Clark (Contact)


Published April 27, 2009

I heard gunshots last night, and the desperate gun violence of desperate people in Youngstown continues. I can only speculate that someone driven to murder has nothing to lose. And these are desperate times indeed, though this is perhaps not new in the Valley.

The NRA claims "Guns don't kill people; people do." Though, as the sage comedian Eddie Izzard points out, "Guns help." Since Obama's election, the conspiracy-minded have bought guns and ammunition by the case, in unwarranted fear that their right to own a gun will be squashed.

Does anyone really think the Second Amendment could be overturned? We can't even pass health care with 60 votes in the Senate. If you think a Constitutional Amendment rescinding the right to bear arms has a prayer, then you've been praying too much.

Obama is fine with you having guns, and no one is taking them away. It's just not going to happen. But can we agree that assault weapons are a fringe too far?

Nobel Peace Prize recipient Jimmy Carter posts a pitch-perfect op-ed in the Times today:

I have used weapons since I was big enough to carry one, and now own two handguns, four shotguns and three rifles, two with scopes. I use them carefully, for hunting game from our family woods and fields, and occasionally for hunting with my family and friends in other places. We cherish the right to own a gun and some of my hunting companions like to collect rare weapons. One of them is a superb craftsman who makes muzzle-loading rifles, one of which I displayed for four years in my private White House office.

But none of us wants to own an assault weapon, because we have no desire to kill policemen or go to a school or workplace to see how many victims we can accumulate before we are finally shot or take our own lives. That’s why the White House and Congress must not give up on trying to reinstate a ban on assault weapons, even if it may be politically difficult.

An overwhelming majority of Americans, including me and my hunting companions, believe in the right to own weapons, but surveys show that they also support modest restraints like background checks, mandatory registration and brief waiting periods before purchase.

A majority of Americans also support banning assault weapons. Many of us who hunt are dismayed by some of the more extreme policies of the National Rifle Association, the most prominent voice in opposition to a ban, and by the timidity of public officials who yield to the group’s unreasonable demands.

Heavily influenced and supported by the firearms industry, N.R.A. leaders have misled many gullible people into believing that our weapons are going to be taken away from us, and that homeowners will be deprived of the right to protect ourselves and our families. The N.R.A. would be justified in its efforts if there was a real threat to our constitutional right to bear arms. But that is not the case.

Let's see some leadership in the White House and in Congress and prevent these weapons from killing our children and our police. It's time to get real with gun policy.


Comments

1epicfail(217 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Tyler,

I believe we have given up too many of our freedoms already in the hopes of buying a little safety. To me the idea stinks of prohibition, not reasonable restraints. I take the libertarian viewpoint, enforce the laws we have on the books already.

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2Woody(452 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Tyler,

Read a history book.

The second amendment, while it protects the right to own firearms for hunting and personal defense is really there to protect the citizens from the government. Jefferson even said in the Declaration, that from time to might have to absolve themselves from one government and form a new one. The founding fathers were fearful of a tyranical govenment. Some might argue that the Second Amendment is there to protect the other 9 of the Bill of Rights. Because there needed to be a standing army, the founders were fearful of the army growing strong and infringing on peoples liberties.

The NRA is opposed to gun registration because of how it has been used to confiscate firearms in the past in countries like Germany in the years leading up to World War 2.

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3jackburton(1 comment)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Read here to learn more in five minutes about assault rifles then this commentator has learned in a lifetime...

http://hubpages.com/hub/Assault-Weapo...

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4apollo(1227 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

The second amendment meant to protect the citizens from the government! LOL.

If the feds want to get you, your meager assault weapon isn't going to stop them.

Maybe we all need nuclear devices just in case?

What a bunch of kooks.

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5irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Let's not forget that when the 2nd Amendment was drafted, the average citizen was armed in a similar fashion to an army soldier. Now armies are armed with semi-automatic rifles not bolt action rifles, shotguns nor muzzle loaders. If the government wants to enforce the laws on the books that would be great. Just don't limit the rights of law-abiding citizens in the hopes that this will lead to greater "safety." Where will that stop? Perhaps if people were not allowed to say what they want, maybe that will lead to greater safety? Maybe if we all practiced one "state religion" then we might not have conflict over religion. Perhaps if the government owned all the property then we would not have disputes over property, and so forth and so on.

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6Woody(452 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Apollo,

Read a history book. read it, front to back, left to right. The first shots of the revolution was caused when the British troops were going to confiscate the colonists guns.

Read most of the history of Dictatorial governments. Step one is usually gun registration, second is voluntary confiscation, third is forced confiscation (remember they know where the guns are because of the registration), and then they increase the government control over its citizens.

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7JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

My alternative to history books is and will always be common sense, which dictates: a.) Much has changed since the days of having to use your gun to hunt food for your family (the real reason for the right to bear arms), b.) Weapons favored by President Carter and other sensible gun owners differ vastly from assault weapons, c.) The notion of using assault weapons for any purpose other than killing other people should be dismissed as ridiculous, and most importantly d.) People can't be trusted with certain things and frankly shouldn't be when they are as detrimental as an assault weapon, as Apollo alludes to with his nuclear weapon comment.

Sensible people talk about present day impact while others talk about 230+ year old laws that by-and-large no longer apply.

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8irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

The right to keep and bear arms had ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with hunting!!! Go back to school and read up on it Jeff. You obviously have not read what is considered an "assault weapon." Many of the weapons you might consider sensible were termed assault weapons simply because of the size of the magazine. In terms of more recent legislation proposals even more weapons would fall under the category of "assault weapons." You seem to know what is best for people by your "people can't be trusted with certain things..." statement. This is exactly what the proponents of big government want to do--limit you to what THEY think you can be trusted with--and not just guns either. Finally, since you are such a genius endowed with "common sense"--what does banning weapons accomplish? It ensures that law-abiding citizens comply whereas criminals (which COMMON SENSE dictates to not obey laws that is why they are CRIMINALS) do not.

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9redvert(2075 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

apollo, love your comment about my meager assault weapon. You are right, if the government wants to get me they probably can, but what about the other 50 million out there with assault weapons that see what happened to me and say "the time has come to take back our country." They will stand up for our rights while you hide over in the corner marking your laundry!

Have you ever thought about the members of the military and law enforcement who will realize what their leaders are doing. Do you think all of them are going to obey orders and take out their own family members if ordered to? I think you are a little naive.

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10Nonsocialist(710 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

The clouded-thinking lib author hears gunfire and writes about how it's the conservatives' fault and less individual rights is the solution.

The liberals' (and Obama's) war on the American Dream is the problem. When you keep people impoverished through incentives not to work or suceed, and also through penalties for working, then the result is sloth and lack of motivation. Idleness leads to mischief.

The second ammendment has existed as long as the Bill of Rights, but gun violence has climbed since the Entitlement Era has infected the USA.

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11TSgtB(3 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Tyler: You quote Jimmy Carter, a leftist, socialist failure of a president that embarrassed our nation in front of the world, did his best to ruin our economy, gave away the Panama Canal, and got good soldiers killed by his limp-wanged response to terrorism and acts of war (the taking of our embassy in Iran). His defintion of "assault weapon" (which he conveniently leaves out) is so obtuse as to be undefinable.

He, and you, also fail to note that thousands of "gun control" laws have been useless as crime-fighting tools. "Gun control" does not work, plain and simple. The only "gun law" that has proven to reduce crime has been "shall issue" concealed carry (although I am against requiring "government" permission to exercise a Right that "shall not be infringed").

JeffLebowski: Who are you to say whom is to be trusted with anything, you arrogant, power-hungry moron? Maybe you should do a little research into your American heritage, and realize how fortunate you are indeed to have been born American. Where is it written that We, the People, must submit to unlawful violence, either at the hands of the criminal, or the hands of a criminal "government"?

Have you ever heard of the "black codes", or "Jim Crow" laws? I thought not. These are the racist beginnings of "gun control" in America, meant to disarm we "people of color" so that we could not enjoy and enforce our Rights and Freedoms.

As a retired member of the Armed Forces, I swore an Oath, several times, to "protect and defend the Constitution of the United States of America, against all enemies, foreign and domestic". I swore no loyalty to any individual, politician, or party. I swore it to MY FELLOW AMERICANS, and I intend to carry out and obey my Oath.

I am also a former cop, firearms instructor, and small arms expert, with more than half a MILLION rounds fired. Four years ago, I took on the city of Toledo, Ohio, regarding their illegal "gun control" laws. We won, they lost, and rightfully so. (Google: Bruce Beatty Concealed Carry Ohio).

The bottom line is: we cannot trust our Freedom to anyone but ourselves. Google Warren vs. D.C. and Haynes vs U. S., just for starters. Warren stated that the cops have no obligation or duty to protect an individual citizen, and Haynes stated that you cannot force the criminal to obey the law without violating their Rights. With these cases in mind, who do you think will protect you and yours?

Whatever property, including firearms, I choose to possess is no one's business but MINE. I would advise that you and your kind think it through VERY carefully before you decide to try to disarm me. Oh, and don't forget the SWAT team and lunch truck; you're gonna frickin' need 'em.

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12apollo(1227 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Woody and the anti government kooks are alive and well here in the valley.

Yeah, woody, the government is going to come and get your weapons. LOL.

Unbelievable the goofy people here! I suspect woody that if the government really wanted to take your assault rifles, they have little trouble doing so.

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13TSgtB(3 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Tyler: A few more points: Mr. Obama and his minions definitely have the sights on our guns and gun rights. Look at the White House website. It is his stated intent to reinstate and STRENGTHEN the "Assault Weapons Ban". Attorney General Eric Holder reaffirmed this in public statements. Hillary Clinton, Eric Holder, Obama, and others have blamed Mexican drug cartel violence on the fact that Americans have a Right to Keep and Bear Arms. So, before I take your word that "Obama is fine with you (us) having guns", I'm going to need to see a LOT MORE hard evidence to convince me otherwise.

Regarding "time to get real with gun policy", reality has shown that the "Assault Weapon" ban was an abject failure. We had a 10 year experiment, and not one shred of evidence exists to show it had any effect whatsoever on crime. This, taken with the fact that preemptively punishing the masses for the criminal actions of a very small minority hasn't worked, further proves my point.

The majority of criminal homicides in this country involve gang- and/or drug-related crimes committed by inner-city "minorities". Homicides are committed by those with lengthly criminal records in a great majority of cases. Usually, these individuals are either on parole or probation at the time they commit murder(s). Revolving-door "justice" is much more to blame than an inanimate object (firearm) that is incapable of independent thought or action. I've never heard of, let alone seen, a gun do anything on its' own.

Firearms "accidents" (it's usually ignorance and/or stupidity) are at an all-time low, while firearms ownership is at an all-time high. How do you explain this fact? If there was as much effort and attention devoted to children drowning, being poisoned, choking, of dying in auto accidents, many, many more lives would be saved. GUNS ARE NOT THE PROBLEM.

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14cambridge(3031 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

These posts are Hilarious.

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15commoncents(53 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Tyler, you really awakened the "pride of the Valley" with this one. You should know better than to get in a battle of wits with defenseless people! The responses are more frightening than the gunshots! I guess I'll never understand what sensible, law abiding citizens need semi-automatic weapons or those with high capacity magazines to hunt. If they are such bad shots, they should hunt in the meat counters at Giant Eagle!

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16tylersclark(182 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

@Nonsocialist: I never blamed anyone for violence except the gun users. And, no, I don't think people should have the "right" to own an assault weapon any more than they should have the right to own a hand grenade.

As for the war on the American Dream, surely this is what was waged for the past eight years, with the divide between the haves and have-nots growing more vast with each tax cut for the wealthy.

@TSgtB: We stick to arguments on the issues here, and leave name-calling elsewhere.

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17cambridge(3031 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

I think I remember someone mentioning people that cling to their guns and religion. A machine gun in one hand and a bible in the other.

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18Nonsocialist(710 comments)posted 5 years, 6 months ago

Tyler,

The % reductions in tax burden due to the "Bush" tax cuts were progressively greater the lower the individuals income. So much so that the "wealthy" paid a higher proportion of taxes after the cuts were enacted. That is why the oft repeated "tax cuts for the wealthy" is simply the dishonest rhetoric of a divisive divide-the-people strategy.

Here's how the progressive income tax (unfortunately made more progressive by Bush 43 and soon incredibly so by Obama) hurts non-wealthy Americans: When those who've incurred debt in order to better themselves (student loans, small business loans) try to advance themselves financially, they become taxed at higher rates if they ever become successful. The higher taxes prevents/impedes debt-reduction and keeps struggling non-wealthy folks from accumulating wealth. Remember that they've incurred the debt because they are not wealthy and attempted to pursue the "American Dream". The progressive tax doesn't reduce wealth held by the wealthy, but prevents others from advancing financially. Furthermore, the progressive tax provides incentive to work less. Therefore, the progressive tax increases the gap between the wealthy and all others. In short, it is unfair and destructive to the economy and the "poor", and particlarly those in debt.

If you truly wish to have a class-warfare tax policy, than tax net-worth and not production/work. If you wish to encourage hard work, upward mobility and financial responsibility, than support the Fair Tax.

I believe the gunshots you heard were individuals who were criminalized by the culture generated by our dependency-seeking government. Probably they could have had productive lives which they were proud of if they weren't incentivized to not work. Not such a "Great society" after all...

It's no game...these socialist policies (both Bush's and Obama's) are toxic.

Those with a history of violent crimes should not possess a gun. All firearms purchases should be limited to those who've completed extensive training and background checks. I do believe that assault weapons could be sold to the rare individual who has special firearms training well beyond that required for other firearms.

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19irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

I find it very interesting how the left-leaning posters here respond to arguments that are presented based on reason. They attempt to inject sarcasm, call members names, etc. Never do they back up their reasoning with facts or data. I should be surprised that this is what they believe constitutes a debate but I guess I should not be surprised as this is what they get from the liberal media. It is amazing what constitutes "reporting" these days. For yet another perfect point, what happened in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina when the guns were seized? Well it left citizens defenseless against thugs leaving them vulnerable to assault, rape, robbery, and so forth. The best use for semiautomatic weapons is for defending oneself against multiple assailants--not for shooting deer. These situations do occur in the setting of home invasions and looting and rioting following certain events such have occurred following natural disasters, power blackouts, etc. Once again, to reiterate a point that has yet to face a single coherent counter-argument--banning or taking away guns from law abiding citizens only serves to disarm THEM and not the criminals that everyone wants disarmed including ME as they DO NOT follow laws and are thus CRIMINALS.

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20tylersclark(182 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

@irishfan91: I've seen name-calling and factual ignorance on both sides, haven't you?

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21Woody(452 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Apollo: I bet when the people in Germany registered their firearms they didn't think the government would come and confiscate them in the run up to World War 2.

To the rest that go back to not needing assult weapons for hunting. You are right you don't. But the Second Amendment is not about hunting, it is about protecting the citizens from a tyrannical govenment.

clarkkent and TSgtB: thank you so much for your service to our country and to the communities you served as peace officers. Keep up the good fight.

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22Woody(452 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Erplane,

you are talking about two differnt things "Machine Guns" vs. "Assult Rifles" While you like to interchange the terms they are really two different animals. Please read a couple of the posts about, and click on the link by jackburton three posts from the top.

The weapons that the drug cartels get while they might have been made in the US, are not bought in the US. They were sold to other nations' militaries, and comeback to Mexico on the black market.

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23TSgtB(3 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

tylersclark: Life is too short to be P.C. I call 'em the way I see 'em. As far as sticking to the argument(s), why don't you try sticking to the FACTS.

What will it take to have you see that gun bans, registration, etc., etc., HAVEN'T WORKED OVER THE LAST SEVERAL DECADES?

Australia, England, New Zealand, and too many other nations to count, PLUS many jurisdictions in this country, all imposed the idotic "solutions" proposed by you, Mr. Carter, and others, and the only result has been MORE VIOLENT CRIME.

There is no such thing as "reasonable gun control", because it's not about guns, IT'S ABOUT CONTROL. Emotionally-based, feel-good, do-something, discredited theories will never solve the problem of violent crime, with or without guns.

Go after the "root cause" (i.e. - the CRIMINAL) and leave us alone. You don't seem to have a problem abusing the 1st Amendment by spreading your leftist, ill-informed, factually bankrupt propaganda about lawfully armed citizens, so why shouldn't I "shoot from the hip", so to speak? If you can't take the heat, get out of the discussion.

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24redvert(2075 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Woody, you are wasting your time. This clown has no idea what kind of weapons were used at Columbine. All he knows is that the word ASSAULT weapon explains everything. No clue what it means!

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25irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Erplane, you make a common mistake. The weapons that most people are calling to ban are not "machine-guns." Rather they fire one round at a time (requiring a trigger pull for each). Machine guns are not now nor have been for >20 years allowed to be purchased by anyone save law enforcement or the military.

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26JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

I try to share my thoughts rationally and am called a moron while others rant about clinging to their guns at any cost and are labeled heroes...I think I need to change my approach. Here goes, to the mouthbreather who likes to call names and thinks I need a history lesson: my knowledge of history is just fine and I don't respond well to tough guys who think they need to carry guns. Retired Army? Retired cop? Thanks for your service but I honestly couldn't give two sh*ts about your opinion. Honestly. However sensible or (in your case) whacked-out, your opinion is no more valuable than that of anyone else that posts on these pages.

Congrats on being an expert on guns, though...that and a dollar might get you a cup of coffee someplace.

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27epicfail(217 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

JeffLeb,

Your posts are always great and more intelligent than most here. That being said I still disagree with what you said earlier. Those 230 year old laws are the foundation our country was based on. This is an issue of people with the best intentions wishing to limit my liberties. I loathe the fact that I'm in company with the "MUST USE CAPS WHEN YELLING AT LIBERALS" right winger crowd but they have a point. We're not suggesting limiting anyone else's rights. The liberal end of the spectrum is the one that to do that. That's what I have a problem with. My freedoms are my birthright and I'm not interested in parting with any of them.

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28JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Epic,

The problem is that for every responsible, knowledgeable gun owner (as it sounds like the person who called me a moron is) exist at least tens of people who posess guns and are the polar opposite. That's why you have instances like Monday night where 4 people were shot dead in a 5 hour span in St. Louis. Stories like these are a daily occurance in this country and if added up over a period of time the numbers would far outweigh more noteworthy events like what happened in Columbine. No matter one's position on this issue I don't know how one could be blind to what goes on everyday.

As with most things, with reform there will be responsible, law-abiding people (who unfortunately make up the minority) paying a price for a majority of people not respecting the responsibility one assumes in owning a gun -- hence my point regarding people not always being trustworthy where weapon ownership is concerned. Don't make it easier for these types of people to carry concealed weapons onto college campuses or anyplace else, that's my point.

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29cambridge(3031 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Jeff, I'm with ya buddy but you have to pick your battles. The way these people see the world is with fear in their hearts. That fear is unfounded but to them, very real.

Take some time and listen to Rush, BillO, Sean, Glen, Greta etc, Count how many times you hear the phrases: " what I'm afraid of, what scares me, I'm worried about, I'm afraid that, the scary thing is," etc. Get the picture. These people indoctrinate themselves with this crap, scare the s**t out of themselves grab their gun their bible and their flag pin and go and hid under their beds. I watch the talking heads I mentioned just like they do. The difference is that I watch them for laughs. I laugh at those talking heads just like I laugh at the people you are trying to reason with. I know you don't understand it but the fear these people have, to them is real. Very sad. I actually feel sorry for them.

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30irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Jeff, lets take your arguments a bit further using an analogy. Every year there are many thousands of traffic deaths. In fact, last year was a relatively good year with just under 40,000. That is a very BIG NUMBER. It should almost be considered a public health crisis. Using your thinking, I think it would make more sense to ban cars as they are the INSTRUMENT of these deaths (just as guns are the instrument of some deaths you are concerned about). Now, sure, most people are responsible drivers and don't cause traffic fatalities but who is to be trusted with these violent machines? In fact, there is nothing in our Constitution (like the 2nd Amendment) that guarantees someone the right to drive is there? We can get around on bicycles. I'm sure it falls under the general ideal of "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" though. What about fast food. Fast food leads to obesity. Obesity leads to diabetes, joint problems, dysfunctional uterine bleeding, hypertension, coronary artery disease, etc. just to name a few. Now many people including me occasionally break down and eat fast food, but with the rates of obesity being what they are I don't think we can trust people with it. I think we should ban it too. Right Jeff?

Erplane, just wanted to reiterate that the "assault weapons" that are being called for in the ban include normal semiautomatic handguns (which are the handguns most people prefer). These are not "machine guns" which are already banned.

Jeff, where do you come up with statements like "The problem is that for every responsible, knowledgeable gun owner (as it sounds like the person who called me a moron is) exist at least tens of people who posess guns and are the polar opposite." The numbers don't bear that out at all. By conservative estimates there are 40 million gun owners in America. Your statement is completely unfounded. Many times daily guns are used for self-defense. Unfortunately, the media bias usually prevents these stories from getting more press as it does not fit in with their agenda. See the following for just a few examples www.claytoncramer.com/gundefenseblog/.... As far as concealed carry goes, I recommend you read John Lott's book "More Guns, Less Crime" which documents that violent crimes have fallen significantly in states which have enacted concealed carry laws. Remember that, although you indict most gun owners, the instances of concealed carry gun owner crime is 0.02% which is MUCH LOWER than police officers. In fact in citizen shootings 2% of the time an innocent bystander is injured whereas that number is 11% for police officers. Perhaps police cannot be trusted either. In Florida which was an early state to allow concealed carry they went from a murder rate that was 36% above the national average prior to concealed carry laws to one that is 4% below average once these laws were in place.

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31JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

I'm hip to your points-of-view cambridge and irishfan. It would actually make more sense to make it tougher to get a license (the state where I live doesn't even require drivers ed!) and easier to lose one's license and be subject to heavier fines due to violations. I have nothing for the fast-food thing other than mandatory wellness programs required by insurance companies -- we already have those and they aren't at all effective.

My point is that newscasts aren't reporting on NRA members killing each other on city streets every night -- these are kids who get ahold of guns and have no sense of the responsibility that should come with them. There are LOTS of people in the inner city packing guns and lots of people using them -- to that end I have to stand by my numbers.

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32irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Jeff, you are right that some of the people commiting these crimes are very young. However, most of these so called kids are criminals, Jeff. Banning certain weapons only ensures that the law-abiding citizens give them up, not these kids. Most of the crimes that are being committed with guns utilize guns that should still be legal if ONLY the Clinton weapons ban is reenacted.
As far as the extremely rare (I can get you these numbers later as they are not at my fingertips--haven't seen any well-founded numbers in your discussions yet) occasion where some messed up kid gets a hold of his parents lawful guns and commits a crime that is a fault of the parents for not preventing the kid from getting their hands on the weapons. Banning guns for law-abiding citizens will only prevent this rare occurrence not the ones you are generally speaking of and will strip the rights of these same law-abiding citizens and will potentially leave them unable to defend themselves as most of these weapons are used--for defense, not criminal activities and I re-emphasize that these lawful self-defense uses are more common than you are led to believe.

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33epicfail(217 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Jeff,

Do you have anything tangible to back up statements like rational gun owners are the minority? That's kind of a big blanket sterotype for "most" gun owners. My personal experience is the opposite. Most feel marginalized by statements like the ones you made. If you have something to back it up, great. But if not you're just furthering the polarization making it into yet another us versus them argument.

Cambridge,

I go and hide under my bed clutching my copy of "Origin of the Species" and my ACLU membership card thank you very much. But I appreciate your typical condescending stereotype. I see you really bridged the gap and helped both sides see the other's argument. Thanks for bringing us back together.

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34irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Tyler, your blog is called the "Reason Blog" yet I don't see any "reason" behind it. I only see opinions (both yours and those of former President Jimmy Carter) and no facts or figures to support your assertions let alone common sense.

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35irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

So, I'm thinking Jeff that if most of the gun crimes are being committed by using guns that will remain legal if the "Clinton Assault Ban" is reenacted that you will then take the side of eliminating ALL guns. I remind you that it will only serve to get the law-abiding citizens to turn them in and not the criminals. This experiment has been tried in Australia most recently. 3 million guns were destroyed yet armed crimes are up--most drastically armed robberies are up 44% because--guess why?--the CRIMINALS didn't give them up! Surprise! Drawing any line (whether it be semiautomatic rifles or all guns) in this argument for the anti-gun crowd simply does not work. By the way knife crime is also way up in countries where guns are "banned."

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36apollo(1227 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

We should ban cars because they kill more than guns??? ROTFLMAO. How about banning wars? Like Iraq?

That argument is so stupid as to be asinine.

Cars serve a purpose. Guns do not other than to kill.

As long as we as a society don't mind senseless killing, then keep the status quo. In civilized societies, Europe and others, violent crime is far less than America simply because they don't permit guns.

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37JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

I have no numbers with regard to crime or accidental shootings, my perspective is based on the sheer volume by which armed crimes are committed and the perception that those familiar with legislation supporting or opposing gun control aren't the ones committing the crimes -- it seems like a pretty basic and sound premise. I also work for a pediatric hospital and can tell you that kids are accidentally shot/shoot themselves pretty regularly, much too regularly than need be.

It would be fair to say that I'd support banning manufacture and sale of handguns and semiautomatics concurrent with an effort to get existing ones off the street; your example of Australia is a glaring one and isn't lost on me but I would hope that such an effort here would be better planned out.

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38tylersclark(182 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

@irishfan91: where's your blog?

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39VINDYAK(1799 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

The Bottom Line.

This is America.
This is not Europe.
This is not Australia.
This is not Russia or Cuba.
This is America.

We are Americans because we formed this country to be this way.

Many people moved to this country because of our Constitution, which provides individual freedoms for all.

Now, some people are taking advantage of their freedoms in this country and are causing trouble. So others now fee we need to take away some of our freedoms to punish those who are causing trouble. Who is being punished?

What is more important? Loosing our individual freedoms?

Or punishing the guilty.

Our society today has to re-think how we punish criminals. There is no incentive to stop criminal acts. We only pass more laws that criminals ignore.

If you really believe more laws will make you safer, then move to Europe. Citizens there are no safer, but they do have less freedoms.

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40Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Disarming the public is a very cool idea. What thug in his right mind wouldn't support this ? There is nothing worse than an irate victim shooting a hard working criminal !

JAY HAS A PLAN !
http://i33.tinypic.com/2m6vdhz.jpg

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41Nonsocialist(710 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Vindyak,

This is no longer the country that fought a war of independence over overtaxation and oppressive government. This is no longer the country that values hard work and the pursuit of the American Dream.

Welcome to the People's Republic of America...

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42irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Tyler, pretty witty and thoughtful response. Where did you get your journalism degree? I'd like to know so I can make sure that none of my children go there. If we are to have discussions and debates, facts and reasoning need to be introduced by both sides in support of their viewpoints. That is what I and most people on this topic have been doing. Your article does not. As for me, I have a full time job, thank you and I do it very well. I was asking you to do yours. As for Apollo, my argument is not asinine. I will spell it out in a more elementary way so perhaps you can better understand. Cars are an instrument of transportation. As a result of often improper uses many people die. No one is trying to ban cars from those that are using them responsibly. Guns are an instrument of self-defense. As a result of improper uses people die. Liberals like you try to ban them from those people that are using them responsibly. See! I can't make it any more clear. Another example. Guns kill people the same way pencils misspell words. It takes someone with bad intentions to kill people and they can do it with any instrument. It takes someone with bad spelling to misspell words and they could do it with chalk, pens, blood you name it.

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43apollo(1227 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Nobody is trying to disarm America. Just to make certain firearms illegal. I suspect the founding fathers never heard of assault weapons! I suspect the founding fathers were creating the constitution based on the needs of 1776 where the weaponry we have today wasn't even dreamed of. I suspect the founding fathers never imagined the metropolitan cities and extreme weapons we have today.

So should everyone have the right to possess weapons like flame throwers, bazookas, and nuclear devices? Of course not. Then there really isn't any reasonable argument for assault weapons.

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44irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Apollo, I'm glad to hear that you are not trying to disarm America. Unfortunately, many of your ilk are. They use the term "assault rifle" to instill fear in those that don't know any better because it sounds scarier. For these people, it is their STATED PURPOSE to ban all weapons and they have made no bones about it. They just choose to start with semiautomatic rifles which they term "assault rifles" to use as a steppingstone to future limitations and bans.
I'm sure you know that flame throwers, bazookas and nuclear devices are illegal. If not, they are. So are fully automatic weapons typically referred to as machine guns. No one on this board is advocating we make them legal. I don't know your background with weapons. I'm a military veteran so I have some background knowledge but by no means am I an expert. These so-called "assault rifles" are just semiautomatic rifles. This refers to how the next round is prepared to be fired. This is to distinguish them from other bolt action, lever action, or pump action long guns (I'm sure I'm missing some). In all of these types of weapons I just mentioned only one shot results from each trigger pull. Most handguns sold are semiautomatic. In fact, I'm willing to bet at least one of former President Carter's handguns is a semiauto. Unfortunately, the liberal press is always showing pictures of machine guns or grenade launchers or RPGs whenever they are trying to rev up the antigunners out there to ban "assault weapons." In reality these rifles are no more dangerous than any others. I hope this helps you understand my positions. I think a lot of the anti-gun movement is based on unsubstantiated fears and misinformation. I am willing to do my part to fix it.

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45apollo(1227 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Irishfan91, I own a weapon for protection and hunting. Very few of us liberals want to take away anyone's right to own sporting weapons and handguns. But really, are assault weapons necessary? Where does it end? If a new gun is developed that can shoot in multiple directions in a constant stream, are those to be street legal also? Maybe I should just put a turret on the roof of my house and get ready for WWIII?

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46JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Per my argument: http://www.vindy.com/news/2009/may/01...

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47irishfan91(97 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Jeff, that story seems to support my arguments more than yours. Someone tried to break in and was deterred by the use of a gun. Had the person not defended themselves they would have been killed by the intruder who is by definition a criminal. Remember all your aims will accomplish to diasarm the law-abiding citizens not rid that would-be intruder of his as he is not about to hand over his weapons.

Apollo, please tell me what is so much more offensive and scary to you about a semiautomatic rifle such as an AK47 or AR15 compared with whatever weapon you have. I want to understand where you are coming from.

A new gun that can shoot in multiple directions at once would be a machine gun and thus illegal. Didn't you read my post? I highly doubt if you really thought about it you could find anything substantially more scary about a semiautomatic rifle compared with whatever you own. So unless you are willing to part with your weapon you should realize what these bans truly imply and what laws could be made by extension if these should pass.

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48Rokscout(310 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Actually Apollo, after living in Germany for nearly six years I can tell you why the crime rate is so low but I won't name all of them because it would offend people. I will tell you one reason. No B.S. laws restricting the police. Police can pull over who they want and when they want, no questions asked, no silly lawsuits. People respect the laws and police there. There is also no violent, thug culture that is destroying their country from the inside out. To whoever said our fears are unfounded; the fear that causes me to not sit on my front porch at night in Youngstown is very real.

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49Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

SAVE THE CULTURE !
http://i39.tinypic.com/124deer.jpg

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