The Guns In America Symposium: Epilogue

Tod Kelly

Tod is a writer from the Pacific Northwest. He is also serves as Executive Producer and host of both the 7 Deadly Sins Show at Portland's historic Mission Theatre and 7DS: Pants On Fire! at the White Eagle Hotel & Saloon. He is  a regular inactive for Marie Claire International and the Daily Beast, and is currently writing a book on the sudden rise of exorcisms in the United States. Follow him on Twitter.

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41 Responses

  1. greginak says:

    Way to save the best pic until the last post. So many possibilities.Report

  2. M.A. says:

    Ah well.Report

  3. Kazzy says:

    Kudos to all involve. And, indeed, a special shout out to Mike D.Report

  4. Will H. says:

    It’s been pretty fast-moving. I took some time out to watch a couple of movies one evening, and there was a lot that I missed when I came back.

    I can’t say that I’ve really changed my positions so much; but I have come to understand certain issues more fully.

    I’m a bit disappointed that no one called me out on my assertion that the self-assurance of youth was perhaps the greatest threat to our society.
    I am currently devising some concrete proposals to address the need of beating it out of them.Report

  5. Will Truman says:

    This was a really remarkable symposium. I wish that we could bottle what made it work out so well and sell it.Report

  6. Mad Rocket Scientist says:

    Yes, thank you for letting me participate, I really enjoyed reading everything, and the discussions!

    Of course, now I’ve let myself get way too behind at work…Report

  7. Mike Dwyer says:

    I was greatly impressed with the whole symposium but the quality of the guest posts blew me away. It was so good to see long-time commenters with posts on the front page. And the tone of the conversations was unbelievably civil. It really seems to demonstrate that guns are a much different issue than abortion or gay marriage.Report

    • Tod Kelly in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

      Nah. They’re both cultural issues that hit deeply rooted tribal buttons.

      We’ve just never set the table to talk about SSM.Report

      • M.A. in reply to Tod Kelly says:

        I think that would be an excellent topic for the next symposium though.Report

      • Marchmaine in reply to Tod Kelly says:

        The post that I thought about, but never wrote, was a non-snarky look at the pain caused to both Gun-rights and Abortion-rights advocates at even symbolic and relatively useless regulations. Leading to an odd situation where the extremes of both positions are the rule of the land for fear of the tiniest crack in the dam letting loose the deluge. I thought, perhaps, it would be an unwelcome conflation, no matter how tempered.Report

    • James Hanley in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

      It was so good to see long-time commenters with posts on the front page.

      Ditto that. It was very cool, and they all did an excellent job.Report

  8. Michelle says:

    Thanks Tod and all of you who put this symposium together. Life has left me with little time to participate of late, but I’ve read and lurked and have been impressed by the writing–both original posts and comments. I look forward to the next symposium.Report

  9. James K says:

    Thanks Tod and Mike, I think the symposium was very successful.Report

  10. Mad Rocket Scientist says:

    OK, OK, lighthearted it is.

    Here is a video of my son laughing at me feeding french fries to the dog.Report

  11. Jeff No-Last-Name says:

    +1000 to this post, and to the symposium. I’ve little time to read it all, much less contribute, but what I have read was truly beyond “space awesome”.Report

  12. zic says:

    Wow. I’m still reading and digesting. I hope you can find a way to hook a directory page to the front page here; it’s going to take some time to chew through everything.

    I hope, in a week or two, you’ll run another wrap-up post, too. The topics highly political now, with the trail in CO, Gifford’s PAC, and Biden’s mission. So there will be news, and we’ll have digested things, putting that news into symposium context.

    Never really had a blog experience like this before; it’s new media at it’s best. Thank you for making me, a relative outsider, feel welcomed and respected. Gentlemen. Not ordinary.Report

    • zic in reply to zic says:

      trial not trail. migraine makes them look the same right now.Report

    • Will H. in reply to zic says:

      Ya know, zic, I’m only a commenter here, and I don’t carry a lot of weight; but here are my thoughts:
      While it is true that the writers & commenters here are mostly male, it’s also true that you’ll find more gays & Canadians here than among the general populace. It’s not the demographics that gives the League its strength, but the diversity of experience and views, and a general sense of comradery.
      It’s a rare occasion where people butt heads here, but it happens. It’s typically over with fairly quickly; we’re here for engagement, not slaughter.

      This blather is cut short by the fact that I’m hungry and I need to go to the store:
      In short, I think you’ve been around long enough to be a part of the community, and I hope you stick around. I’ve taken a liking to you.Report

      • zic in reply to Will H. says:

        Me too, WillH.. And I want to hear about your musical career. I like musicians. I refrained from a Spinal Tap drummer comment, though it wasn’t easy, my amp does go to 11. And because losing a drummer that way fncking sncks. I’m still reeling, and if you haven’t, I hope you’ll tell what happened after.

        I may not like an armed citizenry, but I’m no fan of the police state, either. Aging hippie.


        • Will H. in reply to zic says:

          Here’s some of my guitars.
          I was up to 26 or 27 at one point, then I got rid of a few. I’ve acquired a few more since then (the latest was an old Vox hollowbody that I couldn’t pass up).
          It may seem like a lot, but you have to allow for different pickup configurations, solid-body vs. hollow-body, and tuning variants.

          A lot of mixers go up to 15.
          Those two amps there are supposed to get me up to 130 dB full out.
          There are ways of getting more volume out of it than it’s rated for though.Report

          • Rod Engelsman in reply to Will H. says:

            See… that’s what’s wrong with music culture today. You think you have to have this virtual arsenal of guitars. I mean, really… who needs 27 guitars?? And those amps! There’s no legitimate reason for a civilian to have an amp that powerful. That should be limited strictly for military use.

            It wasn’t like this when I was a kid. You had maybe three or four guitars max; a decent electric or two, a hollow-body acoustic, maybe a mandolin if you were into that sort of thing. Now you have to have these fancy “whammy bars” and “fuzz boxes.” And picks should be strictly controlled, perhaps some kind of micro-stamping to track misuse.

            But the real problem that’s responsible for something like 80 or 90% of all musical crime is those damn inner-city gangs and their harmonicas. I know a ban on “axe”-style guitars is popular in some circles but we need to focus on the real problem.Report

          • zic in reply to Will H. says:

            We have one baby grand piano, about a dozen electronic keyboards plus endless synth boxes and devices and several computers/software for them, several saxes, four guitars, two bases (one electronic, one acoustic), a mandolin, hundreds of harmonicas and several melodicas, a drum kit, various sundry percussion instruments. Mixers, amps, speakers, chords, pedals, mics, stands.

            Enough instruments to arm a band.

            Music is an expensive profession to enter. High bar on equipment and time. All I can say is thank technology that there’s software to write out scores and lead sheets, now.Report

            • Kim in reply to zic says:

              *snicker* my friend the composer has jack. Just a computer, a microphone, and a hell of a soundbank.
              He can tell when people poach sounds, too.Report

              • zic in reply to Kim says:

                People poach sounds all the time, it’s considered ‘fair use,’ I believe up to six seconds.

                And some people build sounds from scratch; which is what my son does, mostly using pro-audio software like Ableton Live and Max.

                But I’m interested in live improvisational music. I’ve watched a lot of musicians try to improvise with computers in live performance. Sometimes it works, but only with a tremendous amount of front-end prep, which sort of begins to interfere with the concept of live group improvisation.Report

              • Will H. in reply to zic says:

                You’ll never get the chemistry from a machine that you do with other people.Report

            • Major Zed in reply to zic says:

              I have one guitar, one keyboard, one microphone, five computers, and more VST and VSTi plug-ins than I can count.Report

            • Will H. in reply to zic says:

              Recording work is different than playing live. You have time to re-tune when recording.
              Live, if you’re in E flat and the next number is a C sharp piece, you have the option of a capo, which I’ve found almost always take a bit of re-tuning. It’s easier to grab another guitar.
              A lot of guys like the Line 6 guitars rather than having several; but I just don’t understand the thing, and I would rather stick to what I know. I’m sorta old fashioned in a lot of ways.
              My tastes changed somewhere along the way. I used to like Melody Makers, and now I prefer ES-175’s (I like the 3/4 body size more these days). And I’ve always been good on a 12-string. I have really tight picking (the one and only person I’ve ever heard that’s been able to do the intro of “The Number of the Beast” absolutely perfect), and I have really strong fingers, so I can do bends on the 12-string.
              I have an acoustic 12-string, an electric one, and a double-neck (which is a Jazzmaster, which is so rare I had to get it).Report