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Talk:Gun control

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Didn't CP somewhere promote non-regulation of guns as a positive health factor? — Unsigned, by: SusanG / talk / contribs 21:13, 27 August 2008 (EDT)

The Bible states as a commandment: Thou shalt not kill.

The anti-gun-control lobby tend to be Bible bashers.

Therefore they should disappear up their own inherent contradiction. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs 15:15, 10 September 2010 (UTC)

The UK has far more stringent gun controls than the US.

Total number of gun-related assassination attempts in the UK since 1776 - Spencer Percival by a deranged chap, looking for the Minister of Agriculture; several attempts to shoot Queen Victoria; a number of deaths related to terrorism (of various persuasions), and several incidents involving knives and Samuri swords. Also the occasional 'nutter on the rampage with guns', which makes headline news.

In the US: dozens of gun-related assassinations and attempted killings of politicians, and (seemingly) regular 'persons on the rampage with guns.'

What arguments against gun control of some sort? (talk) 17:19, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

The difference is largely in attitude rather than law. In the UK, guns are taken extremely seriously rather than just accepted as part of culture. You won't have your usual beat coppers responding to an incident where guns are involved, SO19 will be involved and they're trained almost to SAS levels of marksmanship. It's basically because it was nipped in the bud as an issue early, rather than it developing into this culture where it's your "right" to own and use a gun, making them far more widely available and less easy to track. Scarlet A.pngd hominem 17:31, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

Leaving aside 'seriously mentally disturbed persons on the rampage' (who will occur regardless of legislation), it is not the weapons but the attitude towards 'the having and the using' that is the issue. The huntin', shootin' and fishin' brigade, and organised target shooting etc are not issues; and there is a difference between 'the right to own a gun' and 'the right to shoot at politicians you dislike and kill innocent bystanders in the process.' (talk) 18:05, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

It is not the guns/weapons in general that are the problem.

It is not those who use weapons in 'a responsible fashion' who are a problem.

It is the people who think they have a God-given right to use a gun on people they dislike (and who do not care who else suffers in the process) who are a problem. (talk) 17:02, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

Rowan Atkinson[edit]

In his police comedy - 'Those who apply for guns are usually those who are least suited to having them.' (talk) 18:08, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

The Thin Blue Line I think is the one you're talking about. Can't remember it talking about guns at any point, though. Scarlet A.pngd hominem 19:12, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

This is hilariously biased[edit]

Painting every single gun owner as a complete nutjob who wants to massacre people does not fit the intllectual (do note that I said "intellectual", not "rational", to avoid the "I thought this was RATIONALWiki argument) viewpoint we are supposed to have. Heaven forbid I want to own a pistol I'll never use because I think it looks nice. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs

Can you point to where specifically you're perceiving this "every single gun owner as a complete nutjob who wants to massacre people" thing? I just read the whole article & didn't spot it. Thanks. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:40, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
The comic pretty much implies it ("It's YOOOOOOOOOOUR fault that these school shootings happened, and obviously not the fault of completely insane teenagers!"). — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs
The comic wasn't written by anybody at this site. & I don't think it says quite what you think it does. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 23:17, 17 October 2012 (UTC)
As some one who is 100% pro gun-rights, I don't see it at all. Its mostly more about how gun control is a boogieman in the US, and how little of it is an issue in other countries (That's not 100% take it from a Canadian.) --Revolverman (talk) 22:56, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
What's really funny is that the article makes fun of gun control activists as over reacting... but we are "biased". heh.--Green mowse.pngGodotCalibrated! let the voting begin! 00:03, 18 October 2012 (UTC)

Gun control refutations[edit]

Something that we do a lot of (as is part of our mission) on other topics of dubious assertion, such as ID or anti-choice crankery, is refutation. This article seems to have very little refutation of the dozen-or-so most common arguments that gun nuts use to argue against any form of gun control (such as "guns don't kill people, people do", "if someone else had been armed, they could have taken the shooter down and saved the day", or "what happens when the government becomes tyrannical?"), even the least costly of restrictions. I think, especially given the conversation in the USA right now, it would be beneficial to all to have such a page, or an inclusion here. Anyone on board? Name suggestions? --Seth Peck (talk) 23:47, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

I wanna see studies. Competing studies, with analysis. AD should quit his job, heal his broken arm, and apply his time to this article. Brx demands it--"Shut up, Brx." 23:50, 17 December 2012 (UTC)


The thing about the 1930s isn't really true; while the popular image of a gangster has him carrying a tommy gun, in reality they were only used in a few high-profile mass shootings (most obviously the St Valentine's Day Massacre) and not as a matter of course. The Thompson was expensive, too big to conceal, too heavy to carry around easily, and the drum mag would rattle and give away that you were carrying it. The average mobster rather unglamorously carried a pistol or sawed-off shotgun, and the NFA rule on the latter was the one that really mattered; the first was just addressing the idea of gangsters rather than the reality.

The first proper Federal regulation that did anything to ban firearms was in 1968 with the "sporting purpose" test, which was actually a rather obvious attempt by the US gun industry to get some protectionist laws going against a flood of cheap Eastern European and Soviet bloc imports under the flimsy claim that they were being used to arm Marxist militants. Any of their competitors who wanted to trade had to set up US subsidiaries and lose the cheap labour that gave them such a huge price advantage. Of course it turned and bit them on the ass in the end when the gun control groups asked the obvious question of why the same test wasn't applied domestically, and its "evil features" list was what led to the AWB.

Should probably also point out that "machine gun" in legal terms also created an entirely new category of weapon, or at least one very much not the same as the military definition; in military use, a machine gun is a crew-served support weapon designed for protracted automatic fire. In law, it's any weapon that can fire multiple rounds with a single trigger pull, or any part of a weapon which allows same. A drop-in sear (which is a bent piece of metal) is a machine gun in legal terms. In fact at one point the BATFE claimed a 14-inch shoelace was a machine gun (seriously!) which would potentially mean possessing one would count as constructive intent if you owned that particular weapon. (It's sometimes legal to own a banned combination of parts if you don't put them together; for example, a Mauser C96 has a wooden holster that can be attached for use as a stock, but this use magically transforms it from a pistol into an NFA restricted "short barrelled rifle." If they think you own the holster / stock for that purpose, bam, constructive intent. US gun law is silly). King Skeleton (talk) 02:05, 20 October 2014 (UTC)

Adjusted for inflation: Browning Automatic Rifle, $5,000, Thompson SMG $2,700 with one 20-round magazine. Little bit outside the reach of your average petty thug. Most of the "military-grade machine guns" weren't sold by "unscrupulous weapons salesmen," they were stolen from the National Guard. Nog Bogmire (talk) 09:21, 30 August 2017 (UTC)

What will it take[edit]

... to have a workable level of 'gun control' in the US?

The 'hunting, shooting and fishing' contingent, the 'target practice, competition and reenactment societies' and similar are not a contention (law enforcement, military and similar are a different kettle of fish) - and were probably what the Founding Fathers had in mind. It is the others who are the problem.

So how many massacres and acts of violence will there be - and how many children will be killed - before something is done?

Is the answer blowing in the wind? (talk) 14:40, 2 October 2015 (UTC)

It's more likely that other countries, particularly in the Anglosphere, will adopt looser, American-style gun laws than the United States will ever stem the sale of guns. We set the tone, not the other way around. Plutoniumboss (talk) 01:41, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
Americans have had these style gun laws for centuries, yet other nations are not moving their laws towards ours. Probably because we are the only country out of the developed world that has so many mass shootings pretty much every day. Other countries, like Canada, have more people killed by moose. In addition more police shootings a year than I could find from every country in Europe plus Canada combined in their post WW2 history. Granted, ad hoc sample size. -EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 02:10, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
The Founding Fathers absolutely did not have "hunting, shooting and fishing" in mind when they wrote about the need for militias, they were showing their distrust of standing armies as possible tools of state oppression. The Second Amendement's purpose was to create a citizenry specifically armed with military-grade weaponry and trained in its use, so that a "well regulated militia" could be called up from within it if such need arose. What they imagined is rather like the system Switzerland has.
The "hunting, shooting and fishing" argument was invented prior to the Gun Control Act of 1968, which was actually economic protectionism aimed at preventing American firearm manufacturers from being driven out of business by cheap imports from Eastern Europe and China, by imposing a series of arbitrary "sporting purpose" checks on imported guns which would require the removal of desirable features or force the addition of undesirable ones and ban a lot of popular weapons entirely, or force the companies in question to set up American subsidiaries and lose their cheap labour costs. Nog Bogmire (talk) 08:16, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
Switzerland has - for reasons of gun deaths - almost entirely ceased handing out ammunition to people's homes. As to where the guns are stored I frankly do not know. And there is a difference between famously neutral, mountainous and small Switzerland and famously "involved" diverse and huge USA. Evil Zionist (talk) 15:00, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
I didn't say the ideas of the Founding Fathers would necessarily work, that's just the concept they were getting at with the Second Amendment. Nog Bogmire (talk) 17:40, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
But would the Founding Fathers have handed out guns to women, black people or people with no land or property to speak of? Evil Zionist (talk) 21:44, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
That's not really relevant to the issue of what the Second Amendment was supposed to do in terms of what the firearms were going to be used for: it wasn't sports or hunting, it was combat. But none of the rights in the Bill of Rights originally applied to certain groups (affirmed by the Supreme Court in Dred Scott v Sandford ruling that Blacks were not citizens), so it doesn't really make sense to single out one in particular. For women, there was no law stopping them from keeping and bearing arms and many had access to weapons owned by male family members anyway, and for people without land or property yes, unless you're talking about those living in indentured servitude, since the Patriot militias were mostly not landowners. A Congressional act passed in 1792, "An act more effectually to provide for the National Defence, by establishing an Uniform Militia throughout the United States" defined those with militia duty as "Each and every free able-bodied white male citizen of the respective States, resident therein, who is or shall be of age of eighteen years, and under the age of forty-five years" so wealth or lack thereof does not seem to have been a factor. Nog Bogmire (talk) 04:42, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
Well there is a difference between a society where everybody can open a newspaper or write on the internet what they want and a society where everybody is armed. Evil Zionist (talk) 18:58, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
Yeah, but my argument isn't about whether there should or shouldn't be a Second Amendment, I'm talking about the intent of it. OP said it was for protecting the right to bear arms for hunting and such, and that's demonstrably untrue. Granted, the whole idea of having a people's militia instead of a standing army proved untenable in practice, but when it comes to "what the founding fathers were thinking of," they were thinking of a citizenry armed and ready for military action. Nog Bogmire (talk) 06:27, 1 September 2017 (UTC)
They were thinking of a well regulated militia. Whatever that means. Evil Zionist (talk) 17:48, 1 September 2017 (UTC)
Reading the surrounding papers and discussion related to the drafting of the Second Amendment makes it very clear what it means: they didn't want a standing army because they saw those as a possible tool of state oppression, and so instead they would have the people keep and maintain suitable arms and train in their use so that they could be drawn up into a militia any time military action was required. Thus, the right to keep and bear arms would not be subject to state restriction. As I said (and you just agreed), it had nothing to do with hunting or sport, it was specifically weapons suitable for military use. Nog Bogmire (talk) 06:36, 2 September 2017 (UTC)
Yeah, but a) it was only for people who were considered "the people" under the constitution (and not three fifths people) and the weapons suitable for war were indistinguishable from those suitable for hunting or sport at the time. Evil Zionist (talk) 23:16, 3 September 2017 (UTC)
First point isn't relevant, second is untrue: as well as long arms and large pistols, there were also cannons, field guns, volley guns, mortars, etc which were only suitable for war, and which private citizens were permitted to own: there were also contemporary revolving muskets, Joseph Belton's 8-round superposed load musket from 1777, and magazine-fed handheld weapons like the Kalthoff and Cookson repeaters which could fire a round every 1-2 seconds. The myth that the Founding Fathers couldn't imagine a rifle more deadly than a standard long musket flies in the face of actual history. The Second Amendment also applied to weapons not suitable for warfare or sport or hunting, such as small pocket pistols, pepperboxes, etc which could only reasonably be employed in self-defence. Nog Bogmire (talk) 16:15, 4 September 2017 (UTC)

Can you provide evidence from the time period of a significant number of private citizens owning artillery type weapons and having them in their home in case of outbreak of war? I'll give you the generous range from the signing of the Declaration of Independence to the deaths of Jefferson and Adams fifty years later. Evil Zionist (talk) 21:01, 4 September 2017 (UTC)

Shall we start with privateers, who owned entire warships? Nog Bogmire (talk) 04:35, 5 September 2017 (UTC)

Misleading wording in section: Political football citing source 14[edit]

Source [14]'s usage seems to be misleading, as the source reads: "less than 1% of victims in all nonfatal violent crimes reported using a firearm to defend themselves" but this article states: "victims failed to defend or to threaten the criminal with a gun 99.2% of the time." The article's use of the source insinuates that victims cited in the statistic had a gun in 100% of cases, yet the statistic is that 1% of all victims were able to defend themselves with a gun. This seems to be misleading and should probably be reworded.

Source 14:

Changed. I didn't see the same ambiguity you saw but I did notice that the quote was inaccurate even if the statement in the quotes was true. The footnote has been modified to address your concern about a lack of clarity. MarmotHead (talk) 02:39, 27 March 2016 (UTC)

Gun control works[edit]

Take this list and that list and control with that list it is blatantly obvious that gun control helps save lives.

Oh and the "but guns topple tyrants" argument... Look at the gun ownership of Saudi Arabia and Tunisia and see which of those countries has successfully toppled its tyrant... Avengerofthe BoN (talk) 17:57, 17 June 2016 (UTC)

To some extent, of course. And I agree guns don't automatically topple tyrants, rofl. That's true. But like, clearly general societal and socioeconomic factors (income equality, education, corruption, access to mental healthcare, gun safety culture etc) weigh in to a far greater extent than the presence or non-presence of guns. I mean, the statistics you list — if anything — provide support for the idea that the main determining factor for all negative gun outcomes is "How poor, inequal and politically bankrupt is the country?". In these very same lists you provide;
  • Sweden
    #Number of guns per 100 residents: 31.6 (Rank 9)
    #Country by firearm-related death rate: 1.47
    #Country by intentional homicide per 100,000 residents: 0.9 (Rank 175)
  • Finland
    #Number of guns per 100 residents: 27.5 (Rank 16)
    #Country by firearm-related death rate: 3.25
    #Country by intentional homicide per 100,000 residents: 1.6 (Rank 168)
  • Switzerland
    #Number of guns per 100 residents: 45.7 (Rank 4)
    #Country by firearm-related death rate: 3.08
    #Country by intentional homicide per 100,000 residents: 0.5 (Rank 200)
Just saying. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 18:11, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
Well the US also suffers from a culture of and its vast amount of ethnic diversity has always spurred hatred.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 18:28, 17 June 2016 (UTC) 18:28, 17 June 2016 (UTC)

An article[edit]

チーズバーガー • めん Spinning-Burger.gif (talkstalk) 17:34, 8 January 2017 (UTC)

You might want to look into how Japanese crime statistics differ from reality before getting too excited about that. In particular, how long the police can hold you for, how many criminal cases involve a confession, the conviction rate, the rate of arrest vs. prosecution compared to other countries, and how the amazingly high suicide rate is in no way a sinkhole for disposing of unsolved murder cases. Nog Bogmire (talk) 08:24, 30 August 2017 (UTC)

The issue is[edit]

Not gun control (or control of those who use guns responsibly/for ordinary recreational purposes) but control of the attitude that 'using guns is the answer regardless'/and those who have a sufficiently warped attitude to find 'killing people at random' a viable action.

And - taking the situation in the US as it seems to be the main focus of such discussions: if 'war time and gang/gangster/criminal' events are excluded from the discussion - when did the modern sequence of mass shootings of random people/people in a specific context (person goes on the rampage round their former place of work etc) begin? (talk) 11:51, 4 October 2017 (UTC)

Prohibition and War on Drugs[edit]

People who oppose gun control evoke false equivalency by using Prohibition and War on Drugs as reasons we shouldn't enforce gun control. I think there are immediate problems with the argument, but it can be articulated in the article. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png 🎄LeftyGreenMario!🎄(Mod) 23:30, 7 October 2017 (UTC)


This article is very US centric, but is that because other countries don't have passionate debates about gun control? Or they have more intelligent debates? The situation in Australia is an interesting counterpoint to the US with a frontier spirit facing severe restrictions (see e.g. [1]). There's a collision over race in Firearm legislation in South AfricaWikipedia. Overview of gun laws by nationWikipedia is also a reference. Nations with most guns (spoiler: 1. USA 2. Switzerland 3. Finland). --Gospatric (talk) 17:12, 12 December 2017 (UTC)

A section on these views would add some perspective to the more US-centric elements. GrammarCommie (talk) 17:32, 12 December 2017 (UTC)

Re:NFA in Australia and its effectiveness[edit]

There seems to be a statement that immediately contradicts each other.

In 1996 Australia enacted strict gun laws and a nationwide buy back program following a mass shooting; following these actions, mass shootings in Australia have essentially ended.[20] Any major effect of the Australian gun law reform has also been refuted: "The results of these tests suggest that the NFA did not have any large effects on reducing firearm homicide [rates] or suicide rates."

Particularly the second sentence that blatantly contradicts the first one. It appears to be added by some drive-by BoN but I've added {{more}} because the statement is ridiculously barren otherwise, being just a quote and also is overconfident. The paper cited is behind a malicious link that I removed, which I don't believe supports such a strong claim of "it's refuted". Particularly in the abstract

Despite the fact that several researchers using the same data have examined the impact of the NFA on firearm deaths, a consensus does not appear to have been reached.

Yet, more than a decade later, despite considerable research using homicide statistics from the same source – the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)there is still considerable rhetorical debate regarding the impact of the NFA on firearm homicide. In a typical time-series design, violence rates are analysed using time-series regression methods to see if there is a significant downward shift in homicides around the time a new gun law goes into effect. Much of the debate surrounding the effects of the NFA has revolved around interpretations of the results of quantitative analyses and their accompanying statistical tests.

Can anyone else take a better stab at this than me? So far, saying "it has been refuted" is too strong of a claim. More like "challenged". --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png 🎄LeftyGreenMario!🎄(Mod) 20:43, 14 November 2018 (UTC)

here's a paper that breaks down specifically suicide into before and after, breaking by method, and a majority of reduction in rate from those time periods comes from reduced shooting suicides, and, as the authors note, other methods restricted access by law reduced. Their own analysis and conclusions assert the strength of means restriction in suicide prevention.
this metaanalysis of firearm laws and studies of firearm laws has an entire section of paper after paper finding substantial reductions in firearm death and violent death in general attached to the NFA. Since that's a major metaanalysis, I tried following the papers that cite this one for refutations, but none that substantively address the NFA
I found this one in the "no it doesn't, nuh uh" category but my personal analysis is that they do some crazy data cherry picking(selecting only a subset of the suicide population) and data wonkery(apply an iterated ZA test to each year of data. Why?) to come to a conclusion that just so happens to match their funders the International Coalition for Women in Shooting and Hunting, and the primary author is also associated with that political group as an executive.
Broadly I'd say any charge of "it" being refuted are hogwash. Garbage. Trash. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 21:17, 14 November 2018 (UTC)

Refuting militia claims[edit]

Given that I provided: @GrammarCommie

  • Numerous, though admittedly unreferenced quotes (which I would be happy to track down though I don't have time at this very moment) from those involved in the Constitution that it was not intended for militias;
  • A citation from the United States Code showing that even if it were, the militia is defined by law as a good chunk of the common people;
  • A citation from the Supreme Court, who conducted an exhaustive analysis of every word of the second amendment and concluded that it protects an individual right to own guns;

I believe I did not deserve to be reverted after a minute. Transnational (talk) 00:15, 14 December 2018 (UTC)

Your opinion is welcome, but don't blindly add shit to main space articles. Gun control doesn't mean that your guns are going to be taken away, it means that who gets to have those guns will be better regulated so we don't have any more school shootings. The Supreme Court also ruled that the Second Amendment only protects the right to bear arms to a reasonable degree, and while people will still be able to buy hunting shotguns, assault rifles aren't, in my humble opinion, covered by the traditional purview of the Second Amendment, which covers hunting and self-defense. Assault rifles serve no hunting or self defense purposes, they are used solely to kill as many people as possible in the most excruciatingly painful way possible. Ɖøn Ĵuan (talk) 00:39, 14 December 2018 (UTC)
@Transnational Oh boy... A) either source the quotes or they get thrown into evidence limbo. And even then, what's written on the legal document trumps the opinions of the writers, though it may add further context for why they wrote what they wrote and how they wrote it. B) Yes, a militia is also a form of military unit that existed before the Continental, Union, and finally U.S. Armies were created. The closest approximation in the modern day would be the federal or state guard units. And C), yes they did, and the article flatly explains why that was a bullshit move on their part. In short, if you want an amendment to the constitution explicitly protecting private firearm ownership, lead a charge to have one made. Groups like the ACLU would likely be happy to either help you or explain the flaws in your legal understanding, or both. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 00:48, 14 December 2018 (UTC)
@Don Juan Just playing devil's advocate here but technically shotguns, assault weapons, nukes, etc are covered under the word "arms" which is short for "armaments" and hence "firearms" ("fire armaments" if you will...). It is my sneaking suspicion that since the second amendment was originally intended to cover military matters the wording was left purposely vague in order to allow the future military lawyers and advocates some level of leeway when it came to supplying troops. Thanks to modern "interpretations" (gods I hate that word) It is technically theoretically legal for me to own nuclear weapons, though most everyone else would disagree, rather than enabling the military to own nuclear weapons ("armaments") which is slightly more sensible, though of course the exact details of that are somewhat more nuanced. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 00:57, 14 December 2018 (UTC)
@GrammarCommie I just typed out a response, but your edit caused an edit conflict and now I don't have the energy. So fine, you win. Transnational (talk) 01:11, 14 December 2018 (UTC)
@Transnational Why are you giving up? You can come back tomorrow when you have more energy and renew the conversation then. You don't need to push everything out all at once, and you have yet to cite sources for the quotes, which I am indeed interested in hearing and debating. I fail to see why you are caving in so quickly. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 01:17, 14 December 2018 (UTC)

Into the swamp[edit]

Does [2] belong here? Anna Livia (talk) 23:52, 10 January 2019 (UTC)

(Bump) It doesn't seem so. The page seems to be discussion about the confusion surrounding the inverted y-axis of the graph. I guess we can squeeze in a sentence or two about the stand your ground law but I like to see a source that's more focused on the effectiveness of it rather than people misinterpreting a bad graph. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png 🎄LeftyGreenMario!🎄(Mod) 19:22, 31 May 2019 (UTC)

Rebuttal of the Guns only belong to a militia, not the average citizen Argument.[edit]

Being a direct descendant of the English colonies American law is based off of the English model. Our earliest documents from the Mayflower compact to the Constitution itself share a lineage with the Magna Carta. Even the American Bill of Rights being modeled after the English Bill of Rights.

The individual right, unconnected to milita service, pre-exists the United States and the Constitution. This right is firmly based in English law. In 1689 The British Bill of Rights gave all protestants the right to keep and bear arms. Bill of Rights 1689 The Bill of Rights, also known as the English Bill of Rights, is an Act of the Parliament of England that sets out certain basic civil rights and clarifies who would be next to inherit the Crown. It received the Royal Assent on 16 December 1689 and is a restatement in statuto...

Bill of Rights 1689 The Bill of Rights, also known as the English Bill of Rights, is an Act of the Parliament of England that sets out certain basic civil rights and clarifies who would be next to inherit the Crown. It received the Royal Assent on 16 December 1689 and is a restatement in statuto... "The English right was a right of individuals, not conditioned on militia service...The English right to arms emerged in 1689, and in the century thereafter courts, Blackstone, and other authorities recognized it. They recognized a personal, individual right." - CATO Brief on DC v Heller Prior to the debates on the US Constitution or its ratification multiple states built the individual right to keep and bear arms, unconnected to militia service, in their own state constitutions. "That the people have a right to bear arms for the defence of themselves and the State" - chapter 1, Section XV, Constitution of Vermont - July 8, 1777.


"That the people have a right to bear arms for the defence of themselves and the state" - A DECLARATION OF THE RIGHTS OF THE INHABITANTS OF THE COMMONWEALTH OR STATE OF PENNSYLVANIA, Section XIII, Constitution of Pennsylvania - September 28, 1776.

Later the debates that would literally become the American Bill of Rights also include the right of the people to keep and bear arms. "And that the said Constitution never be constructed to authorize Congress to infringe on the just liberty of the press, or the rights of the conscience; or prevent of people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms; or to raise standing armies, unless when necessary for the defense of the United States, or of some one or more of them; or to prevent the people from petitioning, in a peaceful and orderly manner, the federal legislature for a redress of grievances; or to subject the people to unreasonable searches and seizures of their persons, papers, or possessions." - Debates and proceedings in the Convention of the commonwealth of Massachusetts, 1788. Page 86-87. Internet Archive Debates and proceedings in the Convention of the commonwealth of M... Book digitized by Google from the library of Harvard University and uploaded to the Internet Archive by user tpb.

Internet Archive Debates and proceedings in the Convention of the commonwealth of M... Book digitized by Google from the library of Harvard University and uploaded to the Internet Archive by user tpb.

The American Bill of Rights itself was a compromise between the federalist and anti-federalist created for the express purpose of protecting individual rights. In Madison's own words:

“I think we should obtain the confidence of our fellow citizens, in proportion as we fortify the rights of the people against the encroachments of the government,” Madison said in his address to Congress in June 1789. National Constitution Center – On this day: James Madison introduces the Bill of Rights On June 8, 1789, James Madison addressed the House of Representatives and introduced a proposed Bill of Rights to the Constitution. More than three months later, Congress would finally agree on a final list to present to the states.

National Constitution Center – On this day: James Madison introduces the Bill of Rights On June 8, 1789, James Madison addressed the House of Representatives and introduced a proposed Bill of Rights to the Constitution. More than three months later, Congress would finally agree on a final list to present to the states.

Madison's first draft of the second Amendment is even more clear.

"The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country; but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms shall be compelled to render military service in person."

Ironically it was changed because the founders feared someone would try to misconstrue a clause to deny the right of the people.

Mr. Gerry -- This declaration of rights, I take it, is intended to secure the people against the maladministration of the Government; if we could suppose that, in all cases, the rights of the people would be attended to, the occasion for guards of this kind would be removed.

It really come down to the “shall not be infringed”? There’s already a huge disparity in the words constituting the 2nd Amendment versus how it is applied in practice (especially depending on the state you live in).

How many restrictions and qualifications can you place on a right until it is no longer truly a right?

According to the US Supreme Court it is unconstitutional to :

-Require a precondition on the exercising of a right. (Guinn v US 1915, Lane v Wilson 1939)

-Require a license (government permission) to exercise a right. (Murdock v PA 1943, Lowell v City of Griffin 1939, Freedman v MD 1965, Near v MN 1931, Miranda v AZ 1966)

-Delay the exercising of a right. (Org. for a Better Austin v Keefe 1971)

-Charge a fee for the exercising of a right. (Harper v Virginia Board of Elections 1966)

-Register (record in a government database) the exercising of a right. (Thomas v Collins 1945, Lamont v Postmaster General 1965, Haynes v US 1968) . . . and yet we see all these applied to gun ownership.

Here is the thing, it really comes down to the “shall not be infringed”, NO OTHER RIGHT IS EXPENSED IN SUCH ABSOLUTE TERMS. It helps to understand if you consider that gun control isn’t really about controlling guns--it’s about controlling people. Licenses are just a way to control people and the actions they make. Unfortunately, licenses/registration assumes that every gun owner is a potential criminal and treats them accordingly. That’s really at cross purposes to what a civil liberty is supposed to be about.

I do belive the Court's ruling in Nunn v. Georgia in 1846 is close enough for the intent of the founding fathers.

Nor is the right involved in this discussion less comprehensive or valuable: "The right of the people to bear arms shall not be infringed." The right of the whole people, old and young, men, women and boys, and not militia only, to keep and bear arms of every description, not such merely as are used by the militia, shall not be infringed, curtailed, or broken in upon, in the smallest degree; and all this for the important end to be attained: the rearing up and qualifying a well-regulated militia, so vitally necessary to the security of a free State. Our opinion is, that any law, State or Federal, is repugnant to the Constitution, and void, which contravenes this right, originally belonging to our forefathers, trampled under foot by Charles I. and his two wicked sons and successors, reestablished by the revolution of 1688, conveyed to this land of liberty by the colonists, and finally incorporated conspicuously in our own Magna Charta!

Weapons secure all of our rights. Taken from our Declaration of Independence "Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.” how we do that, is with our arms.

Anything an average soldier has access to the citizens are supposed to. That's what the militia mentioned in the 2nd is about.

"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." "A well regulated Militia" "well-regulated" referring to the property of something being in proper working order. Something that was well-regulated was calibrated correctly, functioning as expected."Militia" referring to all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and under 45 years of age who are citizens of the United States who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia (the unorganized militia) and armed to adequately and appropriately carryout that duty. So the 'armed to the standard soldier' this would by default include things like grenades.

"the right of the people to keep and bear Arms" creates an individual constitutional right for citizens of the United States. The United States Constitution restricts legislative bodies from prohibiting firearm possession, or at the very least, the Amendment renders prohibitory and restrictive regulation presumptively unconstitutional.

Removing the access for people who shouldn't have firearms is constitutional and quite intelligent. Banning access from law abiding citizens, absolutely not. Meaning of the phrase LII / Legal Information Institute 10 U.S. Code § 246 - Militia: composition and classes

And I feel that I should add... No, the removal of rights under certain circumstances (felons, mentally unstable ect.) is a seperate debate not exclusive to guns. It is not 'gun control'. Meaning of the phrase LII / Legal Information Institute 10 U.S. Code § 246 - Militia: composition and classes — Unsigned, by: 2600:1702:4651:29d0:380c:1fbd:fbba:6470 / talk / contribs

Slavery and the Second Amendment[edit]

The article doesn't mention slavery. If one justification for the second amendment was the need to grant southern states the ability to raise a militia to suppress slave uprisings and capture escaped slaves (since slavery was legal), in this sense, we are all slaves, even people with their own guns. We live in a nation in which public safety is less important than this individual liberty partly because slavery was legal when the constitution was written. Sources:

Tom Sharp 17:20, 24 July 2019 (UTC)

Who Is Responsible for Gun Violence?[edit]

A few days ago, I read the assertion that if the Republicans weren't denouncing the racism of the president, then they would be responsible for its perpetuation. If you argue for gun ownership, shouldn't you also own some responsibility for its misuse, no matter who pulls the trigger?

Let's say there was a club that liked explosives. They enjoyed blowing things up. Some of its members used explosives in their work--mining and demolition. They handled explosives safely and no one was hurt. Suppose the club paid for a campaign to allow and encourage the general use of explosives. They argued that people should be able to carry explosives in public places (schools, buses, courtrooms, government offices, hospitals), and suppose that this campaign succeeded. Now, when freely available explosives were used in terrorist acts that killed children in schools, worshippers in mosques, temples, and churches, doctors and nurses in hospitals, and so forth, what arguments in favor of continued unrestricted ownership of explosives would there be? Could the explosives club justifiably say that the problem was the criminals, not the explosives? Furthermore, wouldn’t they bear some responsibility for the terrorist acts committed with the explosives whose availability they promoted?

Free ownership of guns is the same. If you argue that they must be freely available, then you must take responsibility for when this freedom is misused. The Second Amendment, it turns out, makes it extremely difficult to stop gun violence, in spite of our efforts so far. Therefore, in my opinion, everyone who doesn't denounce the Second Amendment is guilty of perpetuating gun violence. -- Tom Sharp 19:25, 3 August 2019 (UTC)

I guess arguments for continued unrestricted ownership of explosives would be the lines of thin gruel of reasoning being "explosives can deter criminals from my house" and that "deaths from explosives is a price we pay for freedom and protection". Yeah, you can point out flaws in my analogy but the thing is, you're assuming they are the moral capacity and integrity to consider responsibility: they don't want to bear responsibility, they don't even want to acknowledge it, they probably know they should but they don't, and they profit immensely from the bullet-infested bodies lining the bed of status quo or are gun industry buttstrokers. Can't say people who support the Second Amendment but also support enacting heavy caveats for it are guilty of perpetuating gun violence either, so we need to acknowledge those flavors of 2A supporters. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png 🎄LeftyGreenMario!🎄(Mod) 22:03, 9 August 2019 (UTC)

Couldn't we tell the NRA, NRA supporters, gun manufacturers, and Republicans who support free ownership of guns that if they cannot help us stop gun violence that we will repeal the Second Amendment? -- Tom Sharp 23:27, 4 August 2019 (UTC)

I'm not sure what you mean by that. Fear of us repealing the 2nd Amendment is what motivates them to stifle legislative action against gun control. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png 🎄LeftyGreenMario!🎄(Mod) 22:03, 9 August 2019 (UTC)

The Pro v. Con section[edit]

That is truly an interesting example of the progun and antigun arguments.

The greatest orator, save one, of antiquity, has left it on record that he always studied his adversary's case with as great, if not with still greater, intensity than even his own. What Cicero practised as the means of forensic success, requires to be imitated by all who study any subject in order to arrive at the truth. He who knows only his own side of the case, knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them. But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side; if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion. The rational position for him would be suspension of judgment, and unless he contents himself with that, he is either led by authority, or adopts, like the generality of the world, the side to which he feels most inclination. Nor is it enough that he should hear the arguments of adversaries from his own teachers, presented as they state them, and accompanied by what they offer as refutations. That is not the way to do justice to the arguments, or bring them into real contact with his own mind. He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them; who defend them in earnest, and do their very utmost for them. He must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form; he must feel the whole force of the difficulty which the true view of the subject has to encounter and dispose of; else he will never really possess himself of the portion of truth which meets and removes that difficulty. - John Stewart Mill — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs

Not going to mention other data?[edit]

not gonna mention the CDC's study that showed as many as 2 million crimes are prevented with guns? And what about Kennesaw (they require residents to own a fire arm and their crime rate dropped like a rock). Even if its just to debunk, y'all should probably include it ShirouIsMyBae (talk) 17:50, 4 January 2021 (UTC)

Call Me Stupid[edit]

But didn't even Karl Marx oppose Gun Control? What about those John Brown Gun Club fellas? I dunno, it doesn't seem like such a massive political divide as it used to be. (talk) 18:25, 18 May 2021 (UTC)

Not everyone here is a fan of Marx, nor fond of arguments from authority. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 18:30, 18 May 2021 (UTC)
Also, not every liberal opposes gun control (as the Redneck Revolt folks shows), and not everyone who favors some form of gun control wants to something silly like ban all guns. It's not that black and white, unless you're the NRA and want to get the paranoid to spend all their money on things that go pew pew pew.
Frankly, I more think the worst of the gun nuts tend to be ignorant than anything else, a bunch of paranoids who for some reason tie machoism to weaponry and think that their Magical Semi-Auto is somehow the key to the ills of crime and the malice of government. As the Branch Davidians showed, a lone gun nut's massive semi-automatic collection probably won't do a damn thing against one of America's militarized SWAT teams. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 18:44, 18 May 2021 (UTC)

California bangs[edit]

Where does mention of this go?

What sequence of events would be necessary for a change of attitudes and suitable legislation to be introduced? Anna Livia (talk) 11:30, 7 June 2021 (UTC)

Assumption of Rightwingedness[edit]

The section on common arguments regarding gun control seems to be written from the perspective of someone who assumes that, if you support "guns" or the rights of people to own them, you must lean right politically. Specifically the very first rebuttal which states, "While unrelated to the main argument, given their right-wing political leanings, gun supporters are also likely to support military spending." Whether or not you support this right has nothing to do with being a leftist or right-wing, and this section takes a very biased stance on the matter, which I feel does not do this page any favors, and makes it seem more like a bizarro world infogalatic article.

Furthermore, "This is further exacerbated by racial profiling, as black Americans with guns are far more likely to get shot.", is not an argument against gun rights, rather it is an argument against racist police. The next part of this paragraph makes yet another assumption about what someone who is irrational enough to shoot someone over a shove is likely to do in the same situation without a gun. At the risk of making yet more assumptions, I find it highly more likely that such a person would be likely to escalate a conflict even absent of the availability of weaponry.

Regarding nuclear weapons and chemical weapons like mustard gas, I find this less compelling as a comparison to small arms like rifles, pistols, etc, as this is also a moral question on whether anyone should have access to such destructive devices. Unfortunately, despite the claim, both sides of the political spectrum are fiercely divided on nuclear weapons, especially if governments should hold on to large stockpiles of them, but that is beyond the scope of this silly talk topic.

Basically I think that this page should have a more "rational", or at the very least less one-sided rewrite that takes into account the fact that leftists can also be pro gun. More intelligent and concise people than me have already taken exception with the other issues of this article so I will not repeat them. — Unsigned, by: Littleman / talk / contribs

Disagree on the racial profiling part. "Exacerbate" is a key word, and the combination of gun ownership and being black do contribute to being more likely to be shot. Gun ownership in general does increase your chance to be shot. It's not an assumption, it's borne out in police statistics where most police shootings involve an armed person or at least a gun. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png 🎄LeftyGreenMario!🎄(Mod) 22:57, 17 August 2021 (UTC)