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Patrick

Patrick is a mid-40 year old geek with an undergraduate degree in mathematics and a master's degree in Information Systems. Nothing he says here has anything to do with the official position of his employer or any other institution.

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115 Responses

  1. Avatar Mike Schilling
    Ignored
    says:

    “I changed banks for the same reason.”

    I am, as Dave Barry would say, Not Making This Up.Report

  2. Avatar Burt Likko
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    says:

    I took a moment to RTFA:

    The [restaurant’s gun ban] has sparked outrage on the company’s official Facebook page. “It’s your right to disarm your customers as is our right to go eat elsewhere from now on to prevent becoming a victim,” said one poster. “I changed banks for the same reason.”

    Because it’s a good idea to have people in banks with guns? What could possibly go wrong?Report

  3. Avatar Tod Kelly
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    says:

    At first I was against having a lot of people armed at BWW. But then I realized that it’s basically a really large bar where large amounts of booze are consumed during sporting events. After hearing that, I’m inclined to favor mandatory carry.Report

  4. Avatar Kolohe
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    says:

    I think per the ledger, they’re technically the new Disney (which Team Red didn’t like for a bit in the 90’s because they gave domestic partner benefits).

    Chik was a Team Blue corporate boycott; before that it was Whole Foods (for the CEO opposing ACA when it was working it’s way though passage; distinguished from the more recent Papa John’s and others commentary).

    There’s probably a more recent Team Red focal point than the Disney thing, but I can’t think of any off the top of my head.Report

  5. Avatar greginak
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    says:

    This was priceless “Perhaps you should rename your restaurants ‘Defenseless Sheep Shooting Gallery’ so all the criminals with guns know where to go next.”

    Sometimes its hard not to feel Americans are a failed experiment. America the country is just dandy, but the citizens…..Report

  6. Avatar Plinko
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    says:

    It was not so long ago I was listening to the local conservative news station when changes to CCW in Georgia were all the rage a few years ago. One of the two main goals of advocates were to make it illegal for businesses and churches to forbid those with CCW permits from carrying on their property. I was mystified that there could be a serious push to elevate a conceal carry permit above the rights of a property owner to decide who or what was permissible on it.
    So, at least these guys aren’t actively lobbying for BWW’s actions to be made illegal.
    So, that’s something.Report

  7. Avatar Miss Mary
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    says:

    This makes me wonder, have I just been a sitting duck this whole time? How many restaurants have I been in that people next to me feel like the *need* to be armed? Is that man over there packing? What about grandma over there with the liver and onions?Report

    • Nob Akimoto Nob Akimoto in reply to Miss Mary
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      says:

      Sitting ducks require at least 48 hours notice in advance….

      Most of the time you’re just fish in a barrel.Report

    • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Miss Mary
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      says:

      Is it that worrisome? Are you worried granny is gonna get all righteous over poorly prepared liver & start popping caps in random folks?Report

      • Avatar Miss Mary in reply to Mad Rocket Scientist
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        says:

        I don’t carry anything in my purse I don’t actually intend to use at one time or another. I assume people don’t carry around a gun to as an accessory. Why would you have one unless you intend to use it? I won’t pretend to know what for, when, or why a person might choose to use a gun, because I don’t even know why you would carry it around in the first place.Report

        • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Miss Mary
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          says:

          Ah, OK. So women who carry pepper spray, or mace, or Tasers in their purse should be intending to bust those out & use them… Sorry, that logic just dissolved.

          Any device carried for personal defense, be it a blackjack, defense spray, a Taser, or a gun, is intended to be used when the person reasonably believes they are in danger.

          That is when they intend to use it.Report

    • Avatar Rufus F. in reply to Miss Mary
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      says:

      To be fair, open carrying in McDonald’s is pretty much the only way to ensure they get your order right.Report

  8. Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist
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    says:

    Not exactly Anti-2nd Amendment. Maybe if they were shoveling corporate funds to The Joyce Foundation or The Brady Campaign, they’d be as Anti-2nd Amendment as one could get. Or if corporate was forcing all stores, including privately owned ones, then maybe you could start getting a whiff of A2A.

    But no, just a business decision. And if you decide to be a dick & carry anyhow, the worst they can do is ask you to leave.

    YAWN!Report

  9. Avatar Burt Likko
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    says:

    And then there’s this topical story out of Bellvue, Washington: nutjob goes on rampage in shopping mall. Good guy has gun and a concealed carry permit, and he’s even taken a class in firearm safety and responding to “active shooter” situations. The problem?

    Gun drawn, McKown scanned for the shooter. But the gunshots stopped. Unsure what had happened, McKown tucked his pistol back under his coat — just as the shooter walked right in front of him.

    “So anyway, I’m standing there like Napoleon Bonaparte, with his hand, you know, in his jacket,” he recalls. “So I said, ‘Young man, I think you need to put your weapon down.’ ”

    That moment of vulnerability gave the other guy just enough time to shoot McKown. The bullet hit his spine, and he found himself unable to aim his own gun.

    As ideal a situation as can be imagined for a law-abiding, armed civilian to be of use in preventing a mass killing. And still that situation is painfully susceptible to failure — because if it comes down to shooter versus shooter, a whole bunch of factors that we can shorthand as “luck” are going to be what matters.

    I know what gun advocates will say: “Okay, sure, it didn’t work out for this guy. But at least he had a chance. Did it come down to bad luck? Sure. But had luck broken in another way….” Which is true on its face, but that reasoning obscures another truth, which is that if lots and lots of people are packing heat, then it’s more likely there’s going to be a shooting that needs to be stopped in the first place.

    As I said in the gun symposium, it’s easy to demonstrate why policy X (in this case, liberal granting of concealed-carry permits) isn’t the answer. But it’s hard to come up with a good answer of your own. I don’t claim to have one.Report

    • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Burt Likko
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      says:

      which is that if lots and lots of people are packing heat, then it’s more likely there’s going to be a shooting that needs to be stopped in the first place.

      Please provide evidence that those legally (legally able to own a gun & carrying within the bounds of the law) carrying concealed are causing more shooting incidents. Otherwise you are making a specious claim.Report

      • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mad Rocket Scientist
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        says:

        I wouldn’t call it specious.

        Just because a claim isn’t fully supported by available evidence, that doesn’t make it specious. It’s only if it’s refuted by available evidence that one would consider it specious.

        I don’t believe we have substantive evidence to make a solid claim either way. However, I would also say that the “everybody ought to carry a gun” crowd (which, to be sure, isn’t every or even a majority of gun owners) are making an argument that would lead to more shootings.

        Because {everybody} != {responsible gun owners}Report

        • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Patrick Cahalan
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          says:

          I would say that even for a maximally responsible gun owner, there is a non-zero chance that he will at some point do something irresponsible. Obviously, with more cars on the road, there are going to be more car-related deaths. Denying the same is true of guns is magical thinking.Report

          • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Mike Schilling
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            says:

            Very true, which is why we have laws, for when folks get stupid.

            It’s not a perfect system. But the laws surrounding CCW in most states are very strict. If you are not on your best behavior at all times, you risk losing your permit. If you get arrested for anything, your permit generally gets suspended pending the outcome of your case. A conviction of most violent misdemeanors, whether or not you used a gun, gets your permit revoked. Felonies of any stripe get it revoked.

            In most cases, you have to be a model citizen, so much so that permit holders will often second guess themselves to their own detriment, such as the guy Burt used as an example. He was probably worried about getting in trouble for drawing his gun, so he holstered it before he knew it was safe to do so.Report

        • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Patrick Cahalan
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          says:

          I think there is a big difference between “Everybody ought to carry a gun”, and “permit those who desire to do so, do so”.

          Most people DO NOT want to carry a gun. Guns are heavy, wearing them is uncomfortable, you have to be willing to invest in a large amount of new clothing in order to even begin to approach something resembling comfortable carry, you have to be willing to be spotted carrying & tolerate the occasional call to the police about a “man with a gun”; then there is the training, and range time to stay proficient (if you want to be called responsible), etc. ad nauseum.

          Most people do not want the hassle or the responsibility.

          Which means you need to replace {everybody} with {those who want to legally}, and while your statement is still true, it encompasses a much smaller set.Report

      • I don’t even have to leave the boundaries of recent pages on this very blog to locate such evidence.

        Were the guns concealed? According to the underlying article, “Both men in the dispute reportedly pulled out guns and shot at each other.” That the guns were “pulled out” means they were in something to be pulled out of.

        Whether they’d had permits or not really is sort of irrelevant, isn’t it? Presumably permits are issued to people who demonstrate responsibility with firearms. But we all seem to agree that sometimes even otherwise responsible people do irresponsible things. Maybe both these guys are otherwise responsible gun owners. But these guys did something irresponsible. And they did it with guns.

        I disagree that my argument was specious.Report

        • Avatar Jim Heffman in reply to Burt Likko
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          says:

          “we all seem to agree that sometimes even otherwise responsible people do irresponsible things.”

          So we shouldn’t have cars (or prescription painkillers, or freedom of speech) then?Report

          • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Jim Heffman
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            says:

            We shouldn’t argue that a credential (driver’s license, medical licence, CCW license, etc.) makes people incapable of irresponsible behavior.Report

          • Avatar greginak in reply to Jim Heffman
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            says:

            If speech, cars, pills, and twinkies were all the same as guns then that comparison would make sense. Since those things are different, well then much less so. There isn’t a push to completely remove any or all of these things, its a question of what laws we should have, and we do have laws and regs around all these things.Report

            • Avatar Jim Heffman in reply to greginak
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              says:

              You’re right that they’re not the same. If the statistics are anything to go by, cars and pills and twinkies are worse. But when Bloomberg suggests that we ban large sodas everyone is all “pfft! stupid! Waste of time, and probably unconstitional!”

              About something that’s not even in the ConstitutionReport

        • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Burt Likko
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          says:

          I recall, in the comments of that very same post, showing that there was but one shooter, & the situation was not what your first link makes it out to be.

          A nice bit of Anecdata, but adults do not decide to create prohibitions on things based upon the acts of a small minority. Or maybe we should have kept prohibition, because drunk drivers have a good record of killing people, even whole families?

          I know! Cops shoot & kill innocent people all the time, let’s disarm them!

          And the permit is relevant. A permit holder has, in the states that have them, invested time & money in following the law. The majority of permit holders are honest, decent citizens who have no desire to become anything but. There always will be, of course, some who see the permit as a license to be aggressive or dangerous. But do you honestly think that not having a permit will stop them from being aggressive & dangerous?

          So, show me statistics of valid permit holders being any more violent & dangerous than the general population, and I will happily agree with you!

          Of course, in the comments of that same post, I linked to a number of studies that show permit holders are model citizens, with arrest & conviction statistics below that of the general population.

          PS avoid the VPC stats, they list a lot of cases where the case is still pending, or where the suspect had a permit, but it had been revoked or suspended for something else, so at the time of the crime, they were not permitted to carry, or in some cases, even own a gun.Report

  10. Avatar b-psycho
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    says:

    Well damn, it’s their property ain’t it?

    Eh, I’ve been to BWW three times. First two someone else was paying, & after seeing the bill for drinks the 3rd time I haven’t been back since. There’s a non-chain sports bar in town w/ a wider beer selection now anyway.Report

  11. Avatar Todd Hartmann
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    says:

    BWW is headquartered in Minnesota. After Minnesota passed a concealed carry law signs like this started popping up at businesses across the state – including the defense contractor where I used to work. Yes, you heard me, the freaking *gun factory* had a sign on the front door stating “we ban guns on these premises”. Pinko commie 2nd amendment hating defense contractors!Report

  12. Avatar Morat20
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    says:

    Judging by my facebook feed, Home Depot is the new BWW.

    Is there a word to describe the confluence of “paranoia” and “victimization”? “I’m a poor, oppressed person, hated for my gun, surrounded by criminals and ingrates” is a hefty part of the vibe.

    The other part is…cluelessness, a sort of massive culture shock that anyone could possibly not want their gun around. “Aren’t I a law abiding citizen? Am I not a good person? This gun is here for everyone’s safety, not just mine. I am a protector! A hero! Practically a reserve cop, ready to spring into action to save you! What is your frickin’ problem with that” is the vibe.

    And my response is mystifying to them, I think. I see a man with a gun on his hip and just hope it’s a cop. Or at least someone sane. I wish I hadn’t noticed. I wish I wasn’t there. Because his gun does not soothe me. It does not carry on it a sticker reading “Good guy, well trained, honest, boy scout” it says “lethal weapon in your vicinity, carried by unknown male”.

    I cannot tell the ‘evildoers’, the ‘thugs’, the ‘criminals’ from the wanna-be boyscouts, the paranoid armed ‘self-defenders’ or the off-duty cops. They just read as “armed strangers” if they’re not wearing a freaking uniform.

    It’s the same as those idiots in Oregon or Seattle who were wandering around with machine guns openly and wondering why everyone was acting so panicked.

    You may love your gun. It may make you feel protected. You may be ready to use it and your life to protect everyone around you. But to a lot, a LOT of people — carrying a gun absent any immediate need or reason comes across as ‘threatening’ or ‘strange’ or ‘worrisome’ not soothing. (People dressed in camo and orange vests with rifles? Hunters, goes the brain, and ignores them. Guys in any uniform? Solders/cops/security, goes the brain, and ignores them. Random dude? Why does he have a gun? Who is he? Is he gonna start shooting? Why is he here? Why does he have the gun? goes the brain…)Report

    • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Morat20
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      says:

      First off, bad guys rarely carry openly in a holster. Such a display tends to attract the police, who may want to talk to them, and if they are a person who should not have a gun, that is not a conversation they want to have.

      That said…

      With regard to open carry, I so totally get that! I’m at a range, or out in the wilderness, or even in many rural areas, an openly carried firearm is not noticed. In an urban area, not so much. Someone carrying openly, as long as it is in a holster, or properly slung, doesn’t bother me, personally. But I can see how it would bother people who are not used to it.

      So I guess this means you enthusiastically support concealed carry?Report

      • Avatar Morat20 in reply to Mad Rocket Scientist
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        says:

        I actually support heavy standards for concealed carry. Starting with showing an actual need to do so.

        I’ve got, hmm, three people I know personally with concealed carry licenses. I know two of them extremely well (I have literally known them since I was born, close friends of the family) and one I’ve known for 15 years.

        Of the three — two have absolutely no need, whatsoever, for the license. They have never been the victim of a violent crime (one had a car broken into while he was elseswhere, that’s about it). Their homes have never been invaded, they live in ridiculously quiet and safe neighborhoods whose crime problems amount to sign vandalism and the occasional destroyed mailbox (and the occasional rearrangment of Christmas deer into obscene poses. Someone really hates those deer). They do not work anywhere any more dangerous. They have never beeen stalked, harassed, or even so much as mildly annoyed by anyone in over a decade, and neither has anyone in their immediate families.

        Neither of the two can articulate a single reason to carry a gun. They both do. I have no idea what they’re afraid of. The younger of the two (my age) I suspect has a certain sort of anti-hero view of himself and carries it to fit that image. The older — my father’s age — I have no flipping idea. Compensating for his short height?

        Neither need to carry a gun. (I know it bothers my mother extremely, knowing he’s got it. She always wonders if it’s loaded, if the safety’s on, was today the day he got lazy and didn’t pay attention, is he gonna shoot himself or her or someone else because he moved wrong…I understand his wife of 40+ years feels the same way).

        They do, though, pretty much everywhere they go and they get annoyed anytime they see a sign banning guns. It’s more than just the hassle of putting their gun away and worrying if it’ll get stolen from their car. It’s an insult to their competence. They take it personally.

        The other guy — again my father’s age — is just flipping crazy. I’ve known that since I was 12. The guy is seriously unhinged. Paranoid, ridiculousy certain of his own judgement, credulous — he won’t yank out a gun and shoot someone in broad daylight, but he’s the poster child for “Accidentally shot my kid because I forgot he was home and thought it was a burglar even though I’ve never been robbed”.

        As for concealed carry being “concealed” — you give way too much credit to CC folks, at least here in Texas. Concealed carry generally means “I’m wearing a jacket but you can still tell” and at least half the people with them, it seems, very much WANT people around them to know they’re carrying. It can’t discourage criminals if they don’t know — and also you won’t feel as awe-struck at their noble, manly presence if you don’t know.Report

        • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Morat20
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          says:

          See, there is that word “need” again. Ignoring the whole, “It’s a Right, need has got nothing to do with it”, determining need is far too squishy a thing & far too subject to the whims of the determining party.

          Now maybe if you had a concrete, objective set of conditions & criteria for determining need, such that the whims of the determining party is moot, maybe, MAYBE you’d could get somewhere.

          But the counter is this – despite the best efforts of many normal, law abiding folks to avoid trouble, trouble finds them. How about their need to be able to defend themselves should trouble come calling?

          As I’ve said elsewhere, the data to date (I can provide links to at least 3 studies), after a decade or more of more liberal, shall-issue concealed carry laws, shows that those who carry concealed are at least as, if not more, law-abiding than the general population, and they rarely commit violence.

          So, really, absent evidence that is not anecdata, your fear is akin to the worry that gay marriage will ruin straight marriage.

          The fear that more people carrying will result in more shoot-outs over minor incidents has not come to pass.Report

          • Avatar greginak in reply to Mad Rocket Scientist
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            says:

            MRS- I agree with about your point about need and i don’t have a problem with CCW in general. But you guys are talking past each other a bit. Yes its a Right, but that doesn’t mean you should do it. Of course that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t either. That doesn’t really address how it freaks out people who don’t like guns. Its completely fair for people not to like guns and find some gun owners to be fishin creepy. The defensive “its my right” doesn’t address how guns make some people feel. I’m not talking about the gov doing anything and if a business wants to restrict carrying on their property that is their right. Both sides of the debate are talking about their Needs ( safety/not being a defenceless sheeple/ MY RIGHTS vs. you are scaring me dude/you really seem to want to shoot someone/guns scare me) without giving much consideration to the other.

            But too many gun owners present their carrying as a matter of Need and any imposition on them is oppression. There is room for gun ownership to be a Right, for some gun owners to feel a Need to carry, for that Need to be based on paranoia/fear and for other people to really not like it and place some restrictions. If people want to CC that is fine by me as long as they follow the law, but the CC people are making just as strong a point of Need as M20 is.Report

            • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak
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              says:

              Yes its a Right, but that doesn’t mean you should do it

              Well, if it’s a right, then somebody better damn well be doing it.Report

              • Avatar MikeSchilling in reply to James Hanley
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                says:

                Really? Birthers and 9/11 Truthers are both exercising their 1st Amendment rights to try to make the rest of the world as stupid as they are..Report

              • Avatar James Hanley in reply to MikeSchilling
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                says:

                Somebody doesn’t mean any particular person now, does it? Your response is just about as on-target as if you had said, “Really, so psychopaths should be the ones carrying guns?”

                But, hey, if you don’t think that somebody ought to be exercising freedom of speech, just say so. Or, perhaps more appropriately, don’t.Report

              • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to James Hanley
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                says:

                I meant specifically the right to express pernicious nonsense. Which is absolutely protected, and I’d be strongly against any effort to take that right away. But if no one exercises it, that’s fine with me.Report

              • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Mike Schilling
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                says:

                Likewise, the right to desecrate random funerals; the courts have ruled there is one. I’ll be glad when that asshole dies, because I doubt anyone will rake his place.Report

              • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Mike Schilling
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                says:

                I’m grateful for those who spout such nonsense, for when my son is old enough, I will be able to hold such people up for him as shining beacons of, “This person is being an idiot/dick. Pay close attention to them, and do NOT do what they do. Don’t be an idiot/dick.”

                We need those bad examples. Such people truly do us a public service.

                Now, if we could only beat them with a smelly trout after they speak…Report

            • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to greginak
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              says:

              I believe I said somewhere upstream that, personally, if BWW wants to ban guns on the property, I have no problem with that. It’s private property. No business owner should have to do business with anyone they don’t want to. If I came across as having a different position, then I wasn’t clear in explaining that I understand what some people think.

              If someone REALLY has to carry (for whatever reason), they can carry concealed, and if they are smart, & careful, no one will know, and thus have cause for concern (which is what most off-duty & retired police do). If they are dumb & careless, the worst BWW can do is demand they pay their bill & leave (& if they refuse, they get to explain their lack of manners to the police).Report

          • Avatar Morat20 in reply to Mad Rocket Scientist
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            says:

            You’re right. My innate worry about the actual crazy paranoid I know who carries — legally — two concealed handguns is exactly like Pat Buchanon’s worry about gay marriages.

            because when gays marry, Pat’s liable to get kissed by a man. *eyeroll*

            Yes, need is “squishy” — but lots of things are squishy, and I don’t see us going “Oh, well, defining ‘pollution’ is hard and measuring it is hard and let’s just not worry about mercury in the water”.

            Determining need really requires just a set of standards and someone to judge them. Add in an appeals process and you’re golden.

            Owning a gun — or some sort of gun — might be a right. Unless you’re a felon. Or underage. Or want to own the wrong sort of gun. I don’t see why carrying a gun ready to use in public should be any less open to restriction and regulation.

            Guns don’t scare me — I shoot them regularly. Some of the people who OWN guns — and carry them — scare me, because they have the judgement of a retarded squirrel on crack and an itchy trigger finger. And that should scare anyone sane.

            And the thing is — that’s the people I know. I don’t know which of the hordes of people carrying concealed are sane or not. I don’t know which have sensible judgement or not. I don’t know which had any real training or not. All I know is they have a lethal weapon, and it’s right next to me.Report

            • Avatar Kim in reply to Morat20
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              says:

              At least three folks around here are on the NRA’s Enemies List.
              … draw your own conclusions.Report

            • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Morat20
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              says:

              It isn’t regulating a Right that bothers me, it is the extent, the range of regulations that is of concern.

              You give me the impression that your personal feelings, your fear, gives you a more profound rationale to severely regulate & restrict a Right, more so than the assumed fear of the people who wish to exercise their Right. Your emotional reaction to someone exercising a Right trumps their Right to exercise it.

              Explain to me how that is, in ANY way, a smart thing? Because if your emotional reaction, and the emotional reactions of others, can curtail our Rights, then Hell Yea Pat Robertson can restrict gay marriage, they give him the Heebie-Jeebies something fierce! And the right to life crowd is A-OK to restrict abortions at least as heavily as guns (with background checks & waiting periods & registries, etc.), because DAMN IT!, they are saving the lives of babies!

              Hell, those Westboro freaks bother me to no end & I wish we could restrict their 1st Amendment Rights – all of them.

              Or, maybe a bit closer to home, the fear of drug gangs/addicts & terrorists perfectly justifies the growing security state, military, & prison-industrial complex. 9/11 scared the piss out of a lot of people, & we should totally respect their fear, even though, statistically, they have a better chance of being assaulted by a cop during a police-citizen interaction that goes biblically pear-shaped, than they do getting harmed by an Islamic terrorist.

              We should NEVER allow our personal fears, or insecurities, or just plain icky feelings determine how we apply regulations to a Right. Because if you can restrict one Right out of emotion, those same emotions can be used to restrict other Rights.Report

              • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Mad Rocket Scientist
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                says:

                PS As I’ve said before, I strongly support mandatory training for permit holders. And not target/shooting training, but Role-Playing. For 99% of permit holders, if they need their gun, it will be at bad breath distances. You don’t need to be an expert shot to hit your target at that range.

                But you do need to know if you have the mindset, and you need your illusions dispelled.

                This is what I mean.

                Have trainers who can role play the bad guy, and who are experts with firearms, and maybe even hand-to-hand combat. A couple of RP sessions with these guys, & maybe you’ll stop thinking you are John Wayne, and start re-evaluating your decisions.Report

              • Avatar Morat20 in reply to Mad Rocket Scientist
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                says:

                It’s pretty obvious you missed my point by a mile.

                In the end — here in Texas at least — it requires more training, more regulation, more registration and more competence to own and operate a car than a gun.

                And that should worry any sane individual. Nattering on about “rights” and “fear” is a great way to change the subject, but it’s a smokescreen.

                There is no unlimited right to own a gun. (Try to buy a rocket launcher, for instance. Or get a gun as a felon). There is certainly no unlimited right to tote it on your hip anywhere you want. (Try to take it into my house, for instance).

                My original point was that people carrying see themselves as heros or practical or citizen auxillary police or whatever. But to everyone else, they’re a stranger with a gun. You might KNOW you’re a good guy, but you look just like everyone else — sane or crazy, good or bad – -and that gun is a lethal statement.

                It’s something a lot of gun owners don’t seem to grasp. (See the two idiots toting around civilian knock-offs of military rifles in what, Seattle? They didn’t understand why people got upset and panicked). And gun owners REALLY need to grasp that while a gun on THEIR hip might make THEM feel more safe and secure, it doesn’t make the random people around them feel safer — quite the opposite.

                And telling the milling crowds “If random armed strangers make you nervous, carry a gun yourself” makes the problem worse. (Even though it’s the NRA’s apparent go-to line). Since that’s just more armed strangers, carrying guns for who knows what reason.

                When you add that in with the — at least here in texas — lackadasical approach to handing out CC licenses, you have a problem. And it’s a problem for gun-owners and gun-toters, because you guys are the minority and you should probably try to find ways to make the milling crowds more comfortable — not less.

                And maybe, just maybe, taking a few steps to assure the milling crowds that a random stranger with a gun had to go through more to carry his gun legally than drive his car? That might be “Step One”.Report

              • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist in reply to Morat20
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                says:

                I get your point completely (& agree that there should be more training requirements), truly I do.

                But first off, you are talking to me, not to some vague, nebulous audience of GUN OWNERS. Don’t conflate the two.

                Second, maybe I misunderstood you, but you are the one who appears to be calling for denying a right based upon fear & suspicion. You are the one who wants to restrict carrying & make it Needs based, even though “need” is very much a subjective value (unlike pollution, where the dangerous level of a given pollutant can be objectively determined). You are the one who has decided that your fear of your neighbor, who, as far as I can tell, has never threatened you or caused you harm, merely offended you or spooked you, is sufficient cause to regulate his activities.

                You don’t have to like his reasons, or his attitude, or the cut of his jib. The fact is, AFAIK, he hasn’t been convicted of a crime, or found mentally unfit by people better trained than you to determine that, then he gets to exercise his rights for whatever reason he wants. I personally think carrying openly, especially in urban areas, be it a rifle or pistol, is stupid, and bad manners (I openly carry when I’m hiking in the wilderness, but it is still in a holster). Right up there with refusing to shower for a month & hanging out in crowded places with poor ventilation. It offends people, & pisses them off, for no good reason.

                I may think people are silly for being afraid or offended at the sight of a gun (& they are stupid for trying to legislate that offense away) , but that is not the reality we live in, so I try real hard not to do so, & I think most gun owners are the same way when they live in urban areas. But us GUN OWNERS, you know, we don’t have the ability to stop people from being offensive. All we can do is advise against it.

                Now, if you want to change the laws such that anyone who wants to carry has to be able demonstrate safe handling, be able to hit a man sized target at 7 yds, & has to undergo a day of training that includes shoot/no-shoot drills & realistic role playing, along with the background check, then hell, we have a place to start talking.Report

  13. Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist
    Ignored
    says:

    Last thing, & then I am letting this go (because I am getting way too busy at work & home).

    For a lot of gun owners, especially the ardent 2nd Amendment supporters, issues like this truly are, to them, all about civil rights. They are, metaphorically, tired of being told to sit in the back of the bus, & they’ve been winning a lot of legal battles, gaining ground, and they know it.

    You may find the comparison offensive, or wrong, or both, but they don’t. They find it very apt, & your disagreement is irrelevant. Rosa Parks didn’t need to sit in the front of the bus, but damn it she had a Right to.

    This isn’t about their fear, or paranoia, or small penis sizes, or whatever psychological defect you think they have. It is entirely about their Rights. Rights that they are not terribly interested in compromising over any further.

    I know, from the history I read, that during the Civil Rights era, a lot of white people, and even some black people, could not understand why the protesters were demanding their rights. They felt that black people had everything white people did, and had no idea why they were unsatisfied with “Separate but Equal”. They could not wrap their minds around it. They belittled it, they fought against it, but they never truly understood the desire for equal Rights, equal Access, equal Protection.

    They got steamrolled by history.

    I implore those of you who are quick to judge gun owners as simple, fearful, paranoid, emasculated, violent, or what have you – discard that way of thinking, NOW! Maybe the guy you know who owns gun comes across as a Hick, but the many of the players who push for expanded gun rights are not fools, or murderers, or violent, or interested in blood baths or massacres. Many gun owners are highly educated, quite wealthy, and they know what they are doing. They truly believe in the expansion of the Right specifically because it is a Right, and worth protecting.

    Of course, if you disagree with them, that is your Right, and you are more than welcome to lobby to change the Constitution.Report

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