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Debate:Gun control

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Debate.png This is a Debate page.
Feel free to add your own spin on the story. Please keep it civil!
Information icon.svg This debate was created by ZeroIsLogic (talk) 22:36, 22 February 2014 (UTC).


Proposition[edit]

Is gun control good or bad? If it's good, how much is good?

On the fence[edit]

I can see it going both ways really, which is why I made this debate. To see what others think, and what evidence there is for both sides.ZeroIsLogic (talk) 22:36, 22 February 2014 (UTC)

Problems with Neutrality[edit]

I was looking through the Gun nut page and I saw what seemed to me as some pretty biased, emotional content. Gun control is a very divisive issue precisely because it is important to so many people. The Gun nut page, however, paints with a very broad brush what is considered "crankery". A lot of it also suggests that many gun owners are equitable to other cranks, like Birthers or 9/11 Truthers. For instance, it states that "measures like waiting periods for gun purchases and permits for ownership and carry" are enough to certify one as a "Gun nut". But study of gun control is largely a sociological science, and as such it has a great number of variables and it is exceptionally hard to tease out truth from studies. I will readily admit that there are some poor studies done out there, on BOTH sides of the argument, but there are many other studies done in which the data is mis-interpreted or intentionally mis-represented. An example of this is comparisons of violent crime between the US and the UK. Besides the obvious fact that the methods of reporting crime are different and the differing social climates, it is still difficult to make a true comparison. Some gun owners have stated that the UK's violent crime rate is higher than ours so our guns aren't the source of crime. Gun control activists look at the actual total of homicides and homicides by firearm to say that gun control saves lives. Both stories are horribly incomplete and fail to tell the whole story. There are so many factors in play that simple comparisons are worthless. Take the evidence that there may be under-reporting of crime statistics in the UK, along with recent campaigns to combat knife violence. Some of the content on the Gun nut page has similar black-and-white thinking, such as stating gun nuts oppose 'reasonable' gun control.

However, there is a problem with that. What exactly is a 'reasonable' control? It is not defined in the page. There certainly are reasonable arguments that banning 'assault weapons' and 'high-capacity magazines' are ineffective at best and infringing on the rights of citizens at worst. The page takes an emotional stance on what is 'reasonable' and states that anyone who disagrees with it is a 'gun nut'. There is a lot of room for debate here, but it can hardly be equated with some of the other wingbaterry on the wiki.

So with that in mind, I am certainly willing to debate any of the points included on the Gun nut page. Please post away. Added: Here's an example of the mis-representation of the facts: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/memphis-teen-posts-gallery-guns-drugs-cash-hours-shot-dead-friend-article-1.1704982 This is a tragedy, but anti-gun groups more than likely will add this to their list of 'innocent children' killed by guns. But looking at the facts of the matter reveal that there's a lot more to the situation going on than just an inanimate object. TerminusEst (talk) 00:49, 1 March 2014 (UTC)

You're right, there is more to the story you posted than an "inanimate object." But it would be equally intellectually dishonest to not consider the role of said "inanimate object", and the failure of the system to keep said object out of the hands of people who should never have had it in the first place, in the story. TeenageWasteland (talk) 01:06, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
But that's part of the problem. Haven't we learned from 1920's Prohibition and the current drug war that trying to keep things out of the hands of people that want them is an impossible task? Shouldn't the conversation be focused more on the sociological factors that lead up to things like this? TerminusEst (talk) 01:09, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
I would love to see extensive political work being done to address the sociological factors at play: undoing a capitalist system that creates poverty and desperation, undoing the systemic racism which condemns certain types of people to that poverty and desperation, dismantling a patriarchy that associates masculinity with the commission of violent acts and the possession of the means with which to commit them. Tell me where you'd like to start. TeenageWasteland (talk) 01:13, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Terminus, I never heard of anybody walking into a school and killing dozens of people with pot. It is certainly hard to keep dangerous things out of the hands of dangerous people, but the alternative is unacceptable. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] [留] 01:23, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Also, I disagree that the article's definition of "gun nut" is too broad. It states that "Restrictions on semi-automatic (and in some cases fully-automatic) weapons, magazines that hold more than ten rounds, and "assault" features, as well as measures like waiting periods for gun purchases and permits for ownership and carry, are seen as not only an unnecessary burden, but as a step towards authoritarianism and a threat to freedom" (emphasis added). If you oppose restrictions on guns for practical or "small government" reasons, that doesn't make you a gun nut. If you make the argument that restrictions on guns will turn America into Nazi Germany, as Alex Jones did on Piers Morgan's show, then you're a gun nut. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] [留] 01:27, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
As a pro-gun person (I'm sure you're all surpirsed) I think for a site with a strong Gun Control leaning, with more then a few people beveling that civilian ownership of firearms is completely unjustifiable and should be ended, its well balanced. A hell of alot more then it USE to be to be sure. --Revolverman (talk) 13:14, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

I have read through all this, and many good points are made. Personally, I think we should keep as much track of weapons as possible, but not restrict people from owning any specific type. The fact is, that if sometime in the future, our government gets really corrupt, and starts becoming a dictatorship, I would like people to be able to defend themselves from it. Not that I see it ever happening. But, it's still a possibility. This is why I think we should focus more on keeping track of guns, and on background checks and mental evaluations.ZeroIsLogic (talk) 09:28, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

How do we determine when that particular tipping point ("our government gets really corrupt, and starts becoming a dictatorship") is reached? Isn't this something that different gun owners may have different ideas about? What if people decide to 'defend themselves' against the government even when it isn't becoming a dictatorship? ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 12:31, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
You make very good points Weaseloid. And I'd be lying if I said I knew how to answer those. Though I believe my own point is valid, yours becomes a very interesting problem. Something that would definitely need to be solved. And I think that it's always been somewhat of a problem when overthrowing or fighting against corrupt governments. If I recall correctly, the Revolutionary War had people in America side with the British. I would assume they didn't think things were bad yet. So, it seems possible, if not probable, that there were those who wanted to fight before things got bad.ZeroIsLogic (talk) 22:31, 12 March 2014 (UTC)