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Author Topic: Had to happen, didn't it.
RunningBear
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Various world leaders are insinuating that the availability of handguns is what made the VA shooting so devastating, but you know what, if any of the students had had a gun, the shooter would be dead and a lot less students would be. S. Cho acted in a premeditated fashion, the gun had almost nothing to do with it.

So excuse me Mr. world leader, if you want to disenfranchise your citizenry, go ahead, Orwell's nightmare wasn't that bad. But as for me, I appreciate the fact I can defend myself freely, and you have another thing coming if you think you can pressure others into taking that right away.

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RunningBear
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Sorry, here is the AP article.


U.S. gun laws draw heat after massacre

By PAISLEY DODDS 7 minutes ago

The Virginia Tech shootings sparked criticism of U.S. gun control laws around the world Tuesday. Editorials lashed out at the availability of weapons, and the leader of Australia — one of America's closest allies — declared that America's gun culture was costing lives.

South Korea's Foreign Ministry said the government hoped Monday's shootings, allegedly carried out by a 23-year-old South Korean native, would not "stir up racial prejudice or confrontation."

While some focused blame only on the gunman, world opinion over U.S. gun laws was almost unanimous: Access to weapons increases the probability of shootings. There was no sympathy for the view that more guns would have saved lives by enabling students to shoot the assailant.

"We took action to limit the availability of guns and we showed a national resolve that the gun culture that is such a negative in the United States would never become a negative in our country," said Australian Prime Minister John Howard, who staked his political career on promoting tough gun laws after a gunman went on one of the world's deadliest killing sprees 11 years ago.

The tragedy in a Tasmanian tourist resort left 35 people dead. Afterward, Australia's gun laws were changed to prohibit automatic weapons and handguns and toughen licensing and storage restrictions.

Handguns are also banned in Britain — a prohibition that forces even the country's Olympic pistol shooting team from practicing on its own soil. In Sweden, civilians can acquire firearm permits only if they have a hunting license or are members of a shooting club and have no criminal record. In Italy, people must have a valid reason for wanting one. Firearms are forbidden for private Chinese citizens.

Still, leaders from Britain, Germany, Mexico, China, Afghanistan and France stopped short of criticizing President Bush or U.S. gun laws when they offered sympathies to the families of Monday's victims.

Editorials were less diplomatic.

"Only the names change — And the numbers," read a headline in the Times of London. "Why, we ask, do Americans continue to tolerate gun laws and a culture that seems to condemn thousands of innocents to death every year, when presumably, tougher restrictions, such as those in force in European countries, could at least reduce the number?"

The French daily Le Monde said the regularity of mass shootings across the Atlantic was a blotch on America's image.

"It would be unjust and especially false to reduce the United States to the image created, in a recurrent way, from the bursts of murderous fury that some isolated individuals succumb to. But acts like this are rare elsewhere, and tend to often disfigure the 'American dream.'"

Police started identifying the victims Tuesday. One was a Peruvian student identified as Daniel Perez Cueva, 21, according to his mother Betty Cuevas, who said her son was studying international relations.

Professors from India, Israel and Canada also were killed.

Liviu Librescu, 76, an engineering science and mathematics lecturer, tried to stop the gunman from entering his classroom by blocking the door before he was fatally shot, his son said Tuesday from Tel Aviv.

"My father blocked the doorway with his body and asked the students to flee," Joe Librescu said. His father, a Holocaust survivor, immigrated to Israel from Romania, and was on sabbatical in Virginia.

Indian-born G.V. Loganathan, 51, a lecturer at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, was also among the dead, his brother G.V. Palanivel told Indian media.

"We all feel like we have had an electric shock. We do not know what to do," Palanivel said.

Canadian Jocelyn Couture-Nowak, a French instructor, also died in the shootings, said her husband Jerzy Nowak, head of the university's horticulture department. "We're mourning," Nowak said.

The killings also hit a nerve for Virginia Tech alumni abroad.

"I think if this does prompt a serious and reflective debate on gun issues and gun law in the States, then some good may come from this woeful tragedy," said British Home Office Minister Tony McNulty, who graduated in 1982.

Britain's 46 homicides involving firearms last year was the lowest since the late 1980s. New York City, with 8 million people compared to 53 million in England and Wales, recorded 590 homicides last year.

"If the guns are harder to get a hold of, fewer people will do it," said Michael Dent, a 65-year-old construction worker in London. "You can't walk up to a supermarket or shop and buy a gun like in the States."

But even in Germany, where gun-control laws are strict, a teenager in 2002 shot and killed 12 teachers, a secretary, two students and a police officer at a high school. The shooter was a gun club member licensed to own weapons. The attack led Germany to raise the age for owning recreational firearms from 18 to 21.

"The instant I saw the pictures and heard the commentary, it immediately brought back our own experience," Gutenberg high school director Christiane Alt said of the Virginia Tech killings.

The Swedish daily Goteborgs-Posten said without access to weapons, the killings at Virginia Tech may have been prevented.

"What exactly triggered the massacre in Virginia is unclear, but the fundamental reason is often the perpetrator's psychological problems in combination with access to weapons," it wrote.

The shootings drew intense media coverage in China, in part because the school has a large Chinese student body.

"This incident reflects the problem of gun control in America," Yuan Peng, an American studies expert in China, was quoted as saying by state-run China Daily.

Only 7 percent of the more than 26,000 students at Virginia Tech are foreign, according to the school Web site. But Chinese make up nearly a third of that.

In Italy, there are three types of licenses for gun ownership: for personal safety, target practice and skeet shooting, and hunting. Authorization is granted by the police. To obtain a gun for personal safety, the owner must be an adult and have a "valid" reason.

Italy's leading daily Corriere della Sera's main story on the shootings was an opinion piece entitled "Guns at the Supermarket" — a critical view of the U.S. gun lobby and the ease with which guns can be purchased. State-run RAI radio also discussed at length what it said were lax standards for gun ownership in the United States.

"The latest attack on a U.S. campus will shake up America, maybe it will provoke more vigorous reactions than in the past, but it won't change the culture of a country that has the notion of self-defense imprinted on its DNA and which considers the right of having guns inalienable," Corriere wrote in its front-page story.

Several Italian graduate students at Virginia Tech recounted how they barricaded themselves inside a geology department building not far from the scene of the shooting.

In Mexico, radio commentators criticized the availability of firearms in the U.S. Others renewed Mexico's complaint that most guns in Mexico are smuggled in from the United States.

The killings led newspapers' front pages, with Mexico City's Dario Monitor reporting: "Terror returns to the U.S.: 32 assassinated on university campus." The tabloid Metro compared Mexico's death toll Monday from drug violence to the number of people killed at Virginia Tech, in a front-page headline that read: "U.S. 33, Mexico 20."

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TL
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quote:
Various world leaders are insinuating that the availability of handguns is what made the VA shooting so devastating, but you know what, if any of the students had had a gun, the shooter would be dead and a lot less students would be.
I'm not sure if that makes any sense whatsoever. The fact is that the high availability of handguns didn't save anyone's life in this situation.

I keep hearing people say "if one of the victims had been armed, they could have shot the bad guy and then the world would have been a better place."

But guns are legal, guns are available, and nobody ever shoots the bad guy.

So it ends up being a pretty hollow thing to keep saying. Every time this type of tragedy occurs.

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TL
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Over and over again.
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RunningBear
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And once again, I must further my argument that would it not have been better to go full on, and encourage these people to have the means to defend themselves. So that they could have.
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Kwea
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It was illegal for any students to be armed on campus, so that is a false statement.


Not that I am advocating guns in classrooms, but I just wanted to be clear.

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RunningBear
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no, I think guns in the classroom is not necessary, but perhaps the instructors, at least a few, ought to be trained and prepared for such an instance.
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Snail
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Various world leaders? I thought the only world leader to speak against the availability of hand guns in this instance was the Australian John Howard.

Sure, various newspaper editorials around the world were quickly to draw that connection (according to that article), but not world leaders.

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RunningBear
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ah,

I see, yes, I assumed from their statements that the leaders were speaking as such.

I really dislike John Howard.

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Lyrhawn
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The obvious other argument is that if the student who went on the killing spree had not been able to purchase a handgun in the first place, such a rampage never would have occurred, making the other weapons unnecessary.

He could have been stopped with a taser, I might also add.

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RunningBear
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If he purchased the gun so far in advance, he could have easily acquired another weapon.
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AvidReader
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I'm going to go with the Simpsons on this one. If we took away all the guns, people would fall back on knives or boards with nails in them. I've had a gun in the house for I don't know how many years, and I've never shot anyone. It's obviously not the allure of the gun that does this. If people want to be violent, they will.

I think the question should be how do we stop the violent urges present in a small portion of over 300 million Americans? How do we find the crazies, and what do we do about it once we know they could be a problem?

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Lyrhawn
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It's a lot harder for a guy to go on a killing rampage with a knife than it is a gun.

I know the gun crime rate in other countries is VASTLY lower than ours. What about their murder rates in general?

If the murder rate, as a percentage of the population is the same overseas as it is here, then taking guns away from people won't matter. But if it's higher here, then maybe we should ask ourselves why we're making it so much easier.

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Troubadour
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There are far better reasons to dislike John Howard than his stance on gun control.

This is one of the few areas of Australian policy where I do agree with him.

In the US however, introducing further gun control is simply closing the barn door far, far too late.

There's absolutely no good reason for Australia to relax its gun controls. We simply don't have easy access to guns here. Only farmers are really allowed to have guns on their property, shotguns, handguns and most other rifles must be kept at a gun club.

The average citizen simply cannot walk into a store and buy a gun without a license already in hand and 100 points of ID. In most cases you also need to show proof of the secure location - i.e. a gun club - where it'll be stored.

There is also no easy way for us to get guns illegally. Sure, the hard-core crims have them but look at it this way: anyone getting shot anywhere in the country is front-page news here. All over the country. It's just not something we have to worry about in our daily lives.

So you may well be better off in the US with ready access to all kinds of weaponry, but don't assume those conditions are the same all over the world.

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Samprimary
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I could score a gun in London and I'm probably not half as creatively obsessed as the psycho who shot up VT.

Legal availability of firearms is also almost a moot point in a country where there's many times more firearms than there are citizens.

This all needs to be taken into consideration, especially since the 'gun-free' counterexample of Europe still has plenty of people who score guns and shoot up schools about just as easily as they could in a country that allowed its citizens to arm themselves.

Guns won't just go away. The degree of draconian social control that would be required to wean america from its 'gun obsession' would not be worth it. Society certainly won't judge that cost to be balanced by an occasional school or workplace shooting. They will legislate as such.

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Synesthesia
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Minor gun control is not unreasonable.
I think folks should be psychologically evaluated before they can even get a handgun.

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twinky
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quote:
Originally posted by RunningBear:
...you know what, if any of the students had had a gun, the shooter would be dead and a lot less students would be.

I'm not sure why you take this as a given. It's entirely possible that if some of the other students had had guns, they might have mistakenly shot each other, or someone else entirely, instead of the actual shooter.

I don't think you need to be able to actually hit a target with a firearm in order to be allowed to purchase a gun in Virginia.

Edited to add: In the larger debate, I agree with Troubador -- the cat's already out of the bag in the U.S.

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Samprimary
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quote:
Minor gun control is not unreasonable.
It's not, but I'm thinking that it shouldn't be sold to the public with a promise that it prevents these sorts of incidents.
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DarkKnight
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quote:
I know the gun crime rate in other countries is VASTLY lower than ours. What about their murder rates in general?
This is just the statistics game that can prove anything you want it to prove.
CBS death rates worldwide
"In Tanzania, an estimated 500 elderly women accused of witchcraft — often connected with an event like crop failure were murdered every year, it said."

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Snail
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quote:

This all needs to be taken into consideration, especially since the 'gun-free' counterexample of Europe still has plenty of people who score guns and shoot up schools about just as easily as they could in a country that allowed its citizens to arm themselves.

I'm not sure if you can say Europe has plenty of people shooting up schools. The only school shootings I can remember are the one in Germany and some that have occurred in Northern Ireland back in the 90's (and the latter ones were part of a larger conflict).

Also, I don't think Europe can be said to be gun-free at all, the difference I guess is in the bureaucracy involved in getting a gun. In Switzerland, for example, all men who go to the army get to take their army weapons home after the army (and since army there is obligatory it's pretty much all men). In Finland and Sweden every other house in the countryside has an array of hunting rifles. I suppose what is different are the attitudes in that I've never heard anyone here say they need a gun to "defend themselves", rather they need it for hunting. Then of course there are places like Kosovo or Albania or Russia...

I also agree with Troubadour in that situations are different in different countries, and this applies to everything, including gun ownership. So this ought to be remembered when criticizing both the European (or Australian) and the American gun control situation.

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brojack17
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Running,
I agree with you completely. The fact that guns are easier to get in VA is irrelevant. If the shooter had to wait for a gun, we would have heard about this two weeks from now and not this week. This person had this planned out. If he could not legally obtain a gun, he probably would have illegally. I do not own a gun, but I do not like the idea of a law telling me I can not own one.

brojack17

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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
Originally posted by Synesthesia:
Minor gun control is not unreasonable.
I think folks should be psychologically evaluated before they can even get a handgun.

I would not call being "psychologically evaluated" to be minor gun control. That's a major invasion of privacy.
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Farmgirl
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I understand that our second amendment gives citizens the right to keep and bear arms.

But this guy wasn't a citizen. So that didn't matter? Do "resident aliens" have the same rights in gun purchase as citizens?

FG

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Rakeesh
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I very much doubt that the kinds of people you would want in charge of such evaluation, Synesthesia, could ever objectively evaluate someone who wished to purchase a firearm.

------

That said, I think it's an absurd suggestion that random teachers should have firearm training. Are they teachers, or commandos? Please. The place for firearms is not in the classroom, unless you've got a cop coming in to visit and give a Just Say No speech or something like that. I for one would be very uncomfortable in class if I knew there was a gun in the room, even if it was under lock and key. Not because I'm afraid of guns, but because I don't know these people I'm taking the class with, or the teacher either.

-----------

And of course Twinky brings up a good point. Marksmanship is not to my knowledge a requirement for gun ownership anywhere.

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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
I for one would be very uncomfortable in class if I knew there was a gun in the room, even if it was under lock and key. Not because I'm afraid of guns, but because I don't know these people I'm taking the class with, or the teacher either.
The same thing is true every time you have to interact with an armed policeman.
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Morbo
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Farmgirl, yes, they can own guns unless convicted of a felony.
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rivka
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quote:
Originally posted by twinky:
quote:
Originally posted by RunningBear:
...you know what, if any of the students had had a gun, the shooter would be dead and a lot less students would be.

I'm not sure why you take this as a given. It's entirely possible that if some of the other students had had guns, they might have mistakenly shot each other, or someone else entirely, instead of the actual shooter.

<snip>

In the larger debate, I agree with Troubador -- the cat's already out of the bag in the U.S.

Those are precisely the same two points I have made, repeatedly, in discussing this issue in the past two days.
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Rakeesh
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That's true, Porter. However, with a cop I can generally make the assumption that they've had training in gun safety, marksmanship, and that they have a whole host of restrictions they (are supposed to) follow before they even draw the firearm, much less fire it. The same cannot be said of, say, a teacher of mine, much less the students in the room.
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Tresopax
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quote:
Various world leaders are insinuating that the availability of handguns is what made the VA shooting so devastating, but you know what, if any of the students had had a gun, the shooter would be dead and a lot less students would be.
Only if students or professors were in the habit of bringing loaded guns to their classes every day. I think very few college students, faculty, or administrators would consider such a thing even remotely reasonable. For instance, if I saw a professor teaching my class with a gun on his desk, I'd probably strongly consider switching out of his class.

quote:
If he could not legally obtain a gun, he probably would have illegally.
How? Order it over the internet? This is not a career criminal we are talking about. This is a mentally-disturbed loner college student from suburbia.

You might as well say, why try to ban the proliferation of nuclear weapons when countries can just build them illegally anyway?

I suspect the real truth is this: If this student could not have legally bought those guns in this country, this shooting would not have happened. There probably would have been some other violent end-result, given how disturbed this student was - perhaps with knives or some other weapon, but I doubt that could have resulted in nearly as many deaths as this did. World leaders are correct to point out the connection between events like these and our gun culture - although there are plenty of countries with gun cultures that are far worse.

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Qaz
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>But guns are legal, guns are available, and nobody ever shoots the bad guy.

>So it ends up being a pretty hollow thing to keep saying. Every time this type of tragedy occurs.

Actually sometimes somebody *does* shoot the bad guy. What's true is that when this type of tragedy occurs nobody shot the bad guy, because if anyone had, the tragedy wouldn't have happened.

This happened last year in NC: armed students overpowered a schizophrenic student who was going postal. I can't even find a reference to it now, because thanks to these brave people, it didn't become big news.

[ April 18, 2007, 10:46 AM: Message edited by: Qaz ]

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Qaz
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I looked over a Wikipedia list of non-governmental massacres ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_massacres ) to see if they took place in no-gun areas.

Year, Name of massacre, number killed, location, whether it was a no-gun area

1982 Woo Bum-Kon 58 Gyeongsangnam-do, South Korea ----- ??? -----
1983 Wah Mee massacre 13 Seattle, Washington ****NO-GUN???***** (gaming establishment)
1984 McDonald's massacre 22 San Diego, California ----- ??? -----
1984 Milperra massacre 7 Sydney, Australia ****NO-GUN***** (Oz)
1986 Edmond Postal massacre 15 Edmond, Oklahoma ----- ??? -----
1987 Hoddle Street massacre 7 Melbourne, Victoria, Australia ****NO-GUN*****
1987 Hungerford massacre 17 Hungerford, Berkshire, England ****NO-GUN*****
1987 Queen Street massacre 9 Melbourne, Victoria, Australia ****NO-GUN*****
1988 ESL massacre 7 Sunnyvale, California ----- ??? -----
1989 École Polytechnique massacre 15 Université de Montréal ****NO-GUN*****
1989 Standard Gravure shooting 9 Louisville, Kentucky ----- ??? -----
1990 Aramoana massacre 13 Aramoana, New Zealand ----- ??? -----
1991 Strathfield massacre 7 Sydney, Australia ****NO-GUN*****
1991 Luby's massacre 23 Killeen, Texas ****NO-GUN*****. Texas bans handguns in restaurants
1992 Central Coast massacre 7 Central Sydney, Australia ****NO-GUN*****
1993 101 California Street shootings 9 San Francisco ----- ??? -----
1993 Brown's Chicken massacre 7 Palatine, Illinois ----- ??? -----
1993 Long Island Rail Road massacre 6 Nassau County, New York ----- ??? ----- Is it legal to have a gun on the subway?
1996 Dunblane massacre 18 Dunblane, Scotland ****NO-GUN*****
1996 Port Arthur massacre 35 Tasmania, Australia ****NO-GUN*****
1997 Sanaa massacre 8 Yemen ----- ??? -----
1998 Jonesboro massacre 5 Arkansas, United States ****NO-GUN*****
1999 Columbine High School massacre 15 Jefferson County, Colorado, United States ****NO-GUN*****
2000 The Wichita Massacre 5 Wichita, Kansas, United States ----- ??? -----
2001 Nepalese royal family massacre 8 Katmandu, Nepal ----- ??? -----
2001 Osaka school massacre 8 Ikeda, Osaka prefecture, Japan Not done with firearms
2001 Zug massacre 15 Zug, Switzerland ----- ??? -----
2002 Erfurt massacre 17 Erfurt, Thuringia, Germany ----- ??? -----
2003 Santa Monica Farmer's Market Massacre 10 Santa Monica, California, United States Not done with firearms
2005 Red Lake High School massacre 10 Red Lake, Minnesota, United States ****NO-GUN*****
2006 Goleta Postal massacre 8 Goleta, California, United States ----- ??? -----
2006 Capitol Hill massacre 7 Seattle, Washington, United States !!!!!!!LEGAL TO HAVE GUNS!!!!! (private home)
2006 Amish school shooting 5 Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania, United States ****NO-GUN*****
2007 Trolley Square Shooting 5 Salt Lake City, Utah, United States Shopping mall -- ****NO-GUN***** area
2007 Virginia Tech massacre 33 Blacksburg, Virginia, United States ****NO-GUN*****

--

From this I conclude that no-gun areas do not prevent mass shootings. If they did, most of the shootings would occur in other areas.

It might be that the no-gun rule causes shootings to be more common in such places, or maybe the no-gun rule and the shootings are more common in such places for some third reason.

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Fractal Fraggle
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quote:
Originally posted by Tresopax:


quote:
If he could not legally obtain a gun, he probably would have illegally.
How? Order it over the internet? This is not a career criminal we are talking about. This is a mentally-disturbed loner college student from suburbia.


He would have obtained a gun the same way people obtain illegal drugs in suburbia. He would simply buy one from somebody. And it probably wouldn't take him that much effort or time to find one. If you want something bad enough to pay for it you can usually find someone to sell it to you.

In the US (even if we took all the guns away from all civilians), there is no way we could control inflow of guns from Mexico or Canada once the word got out how much you could charge for a handgun on the black market. We can't control the inflow of illegal drugs into this country, why should guns be any different?

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rivka
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quote:
2003 Santa Monica Farmer's Market Massacre 10 Santa Monica, California, United States Not done with firearms
That was a horrible, horrible car accident. But calling it a "massacre" seems a bit of an overstatement.
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porcelain girl
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Even with incidents such as VT happening, I am not more comfortable at the thought of students being free to bring firearms on campus, nor professors.
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Tresopax
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quote:
He would have obtained a gun the same way people obtain illegal drugs in suburbia. He would simply buy one from somebody. And it probably wouldn't take him that much effort or time to find one. If you want something bad enough to pay for it you can usually find someone to sell it to you.

In the US (even if we took all the guns away from all civilians), there is no way we could control inflow of guns from Mexico or Canada once the word got out how much you could charge for a handgun on the black market. We can't control the inflow of illegal drugs into this country, why should guns be any different?

So would you suggest that banning drugs is pointless, and that they should all be legalized since many people can get them illegally anyway with some degree of effort?
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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
That's true, Porter. However, with a cop I can generally make the assumption that they've had training in gun safety, marksmanship, and that they have a whole host of restrictions they (are supposed to) follow before they even draw the firearm, much less fire it. The same cannot be said of, say, a teacher of mine, much less the students in the room.

Rakeesh, weren't you just arguing against giving teachers firearm training?
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Rakeesh
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You're not answering his question, Tresopax (although your point is a good one): why would guns be any different from illegal drugs?
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Rakeesh
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Yes I was, Porter. Well, I'll say this: if teachers were to be given guns, and the teachers were given the same degree of training, restrictions, and responsibilities for handling those guns as were police officers, I would be much less uncomfortable.

That did not seem to be what was under discussion to me, though.

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mr_porteiro_head
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Rakeesh -- are you saying that anything less than the full training that a full-time police officer receives is not sufficient?

What about part-time/reserve police officers? They receive training, although clearly not the same amount that the full-time officers do. Do you think they shouldn't have firearms?

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TomDavidson
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quote:
If they did, most of the shootings would occur in other areas.
This doesn't necessarily follow, unless you assume that the presence of guns is the only factor driving the selection of target site.
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Rakeesh
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To be clear, I'm not talking about all the police training, just as it pertains to firearms.

But yes, yes I do think they should have that same level of training...and I think that PT/reserve cops should have to meet the same standards of tests and training as FT/active cops do.

Isn't that what we owe our civilian population?

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BaoQingTian
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quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
It's a lot harder for a guy to go on a killing rampage with a knife than it is a gun.

And it's a lot easier to kill a massive amount of people with homemade explosives and scrap metal than it is a gun. 9-11 terrorists managed to kill thousands armed with nothing more than plastic box knives.

AvidReader is right. Focusing on the means may buy us very little. Humans are ingenious and will figure out other ways (some even better no doubt) to kill each other. If we can get to the source of the problem, which is the factors that influence people to go on a killing rampage, then we might have a shot.

However, the left just focuses on removing the means by banning guns, and the right focuses on deterring people with 'tough on crime' laws and the death penalty. So here we are still having mass murder rampages. I don't know what the solution is though. *shrug*

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mr_porteiro_head
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How much do you know about how much firearm training policemen receive?

I certainly agree that it makes sense for there to be some minimum amount of firearms training for those we hope will use firearms to protect others, but what I wonder is how you came to the conclusion that the precise amount of training that police officers current receive is the exact right amount -- no less, no more.

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Snail
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quote:
From this I conclude that no-gun areas do not prevent mass shootings. If they did, most of the shootings would occur in other areas.
Couldn't you just as easily conclude that lax overall gun control laws do absolutely nothing to prevent them either seeing as more than half of the cases you listed occurred in the United States? So if the easy availability of firearms in the US prevents such massacres from occurring in places where it's legal to carry guns, shouldn't countries where arms are more controlled by definition have more massacres in those areas also?

I'm not sure how much of an opinion you can draw one way or another from that list. I'm pretty sure that people intent on and capable of carrying out a massacre will find a way to do so whatever the legislation.

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Fractal Fraggle
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quote:
Originally posted by Tresopax:
quote:
He would have obtained a gun the same way people obtain illegal drugs in suburbia. He would simply buy one from somebody. And it probably wouldn't take him that much effort or time to find one. If you want something bad enough to pay for it you can usually find someone to sell it to you.

In the US (even if we took all the guns away from all civilians), there is no way we could control inflow of guns from Mexico or Canada once the word got out how much you could charge for a handgun on the black market. We can't control the inflow of illegal drugs into this country, why should guns be any different?

So would you suggest that banning drugs is pointless, and that they should all be legalized since many people can get them illegally anyway with some degree of effort?
Not at all. Maybe I mistook your point but it seemed like you were saying that because the shooter was just a suburban college kid he wouldn't have been able to get ahold of a gun if handguns were illegal in the US. My point was that suburban kids can pretty much get ahold of illegal drugs with very little effort and I see no reason why the illegal handgun black market would be different.

Honestly, I think focusing on the guns is the wrong thing at this point. I think this kid was seriously disturbed and he would have found a way to murder people even without a handgun. Maybe he would have even managed to become a serial killer and murder that many people without being caught be police. We just can't know.

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Rakeesh
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Well, it depends on what region we're talking about, Porter. I haven't come to the conclusion that it's the exact right amount...but I've made a concious decision to acknowledge we've got to set it SOMEWHERE, and choose to be comfortable with that. If I didn't, I could never be comfortable around cops, could I?
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mr_porteiro_head
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So, would it be fair to say that if teachers or students had firearms accessible, you think they should have some amount of training, but haven't come to any conclusion about what precisely that training should entail?
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TomDavidson
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quote:
I must further my argument that would it not have been better to go full on, and encourage these people to have the means to defend themselves.
The idea that encouraging young people to carry concealed, loaded firearms into classrooms will somehow increase public safety is one that perplexes and baffles me.
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mr_porteiro_head
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In this specific situation, I imagine that lives would have been saved had a significant portion of the population on that campus (I'm thinking 5%-10%) were armed.

I also imagine that if a significant portion of the campus population were similarly armed, other heated situations would become much more dangerous.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
In this specific situation, I imagine that lives would have been saved had a significant portion of the population on that campus (I'm thinking 5%-10%) were armed.
Well, sure. In this specific situation, lives might also have been saved if all Asian students entering the building were required to first amputate their hands.

I don't think the obvious cost of not just permitting but actively encouraging teenagers to carry firearms to school is worth preventing individual rare but horrific events.

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