Atheists are a small minority in the U.S. Advocates of gun control might be a minority in America as well. In light of the recent shootings in Aurora I am curious as to how atheists in this network view the lack of gun restrictions. There are probably divergent views.
I have trouble believing that both presidential candidates are steering away from any call for reform after the horrific mass shooting. In my opinion it is insane to allow citizens access to assault weapons that can kill scores of people in a few minutes. It was even more shocking to hear on a news show that a family had to raise money to pay for the immense hospital bills for one of the victims while they were already crippled with medical bills from the mothers fight with breast cancer.
As a Canadian I came to stand with my U.S brothers for the reason rally and freedom from religion. I would be willing to come down to the capitol and march for two other important causes. Gun control and universal health care.
Tom Sarbeck wrote:
"Dr. Clark, I write on law-related issues and occasionally, upon re-reading for clarification, find that I produced a sentence too complex for my mind, let alone for the average mind.
"Your post's second sentence--The notion that no restrictions consistent with Constitutional rights can be placed on gun ownership which will improve safety in public places is not sensible--is such a sentence."
You will have to forgive me for only having a high school education and attempting to ask a question here - I am likely out of my legal league.
As I understand it, the Constitution has in it a right to vote. That does not mean that the Federal or state governments cannot put restrictions on it (registration is required, felons may not vote, foreigners may not vote [it mentions persons in the Constitution, not citizens, except the XIV Amendment).
To me this means that any said right may be regulated, as long as it is the properly-constituted legislatures of the nation that do it. Thus, voter registration laws, not a universal right for eighteen-year olds to vote.
Thus the II Amendment, though it speaks of a right to bear arms (and also speaks of militias), the Government does not let me own an anti-aircraft battery, landmines, or an atom weapon.
The Government also does not let me own a set of brass knuckles or a stiletto (also arms).
So how is it that the NRA claim that canister magazines and rapid-fire high power rifles cannot be regulated in the same manner as nuclear arms and chemical weapons (they are "arms" too)?
As I understand it, the courts only found that "militia" equals "individual untrained in military tactics or weaponry" in the recent case that struck down the District of Columbia's handgun law. Prior to that, "militia" was understood to be "armed force under the Federal government or a state government."
(I also understand that neo-cons hate courts that "find" things in the Constitution, except when those things break their way.)
James, in my index to the US Constitution there are five references to "vote" (all of them to amendments made after the Civil War and several made in our own time). If I read Roman numbering correctly they are:
Dist. of Columbia XXIII or 23, equal suffrage XIX or 19, right to vote XV or 15 and XXVI or 26, and voting age XXVI or 26.
BTW James, I totally, totally, forgive you for having only a high school education and asking questions. If in 1950 North Korea had not invaded South Korea, I too would have had only a high school education and more questions than I could have counted.
Also, I've done google searches on terms such as "voting scotus" (short for "Supreme Court of the US") and found some interesting reading.
While I do not have a robust education, I do try to pay attention to what is going on, and not to Faux News (except to see what the neo-cons are up to and who they are smearing today). Mostly I get news and information from the CBC, the BBC, and sometimes VOA.
I would note LiberalViewer on YouTube's analysis of the Newtown shootings. (He is a California ACLU lawyer). (He makes a big deal out of Fox News bias, comparing clips from their news shows to things that were actually said, creative editing, &c).
He basically says the same things I did, that I could not see a particular prohibition against regulation of guns (in the same manner that voting is regulated).
But I don't really think it will matter. The NRA is supported primarily by gun manufacturers, not its individual members, and they are a powerful and wealthy lobby in Washington.
There was an interesting op-ed piece in the Des Moines (Iowa) Register, where the writer argues the idea of repealing the II Amendment (or as he says: the gun part anyway) and arresting those who do not turn in their armament. This is in the religio-industrial heartland of the USA, the other side of Nebraska from where I live.
Russell, your reply to TNT up this page (perhaps soon on a previous page) included this:
...a New York cultural example. I remember a time when it was considered very unsafe to visit the city. That got dramatically turned around by policing methods that were cutting edge. I don't think the top cops looked for an experimental model to justify their actions - they reasoned and acted and got results.
That turnaround happened after then-mayor Rudolph Giuliani hired a police chief who, rather than reasoning to the policing methods he used in NY, had used them in Massachusetts and obtained the intended results.
I wish animals and birds had leagly owned guns and had the license to kill three humen a year only for the sake of pleasure called hunting.
I would note that Thunderf00t (one of the raging atheists on YouTube) delightfully pillories Mike Huckabee and the gun culture in the USA in this video:
Huckabee and his kind. Think predator.
People deceived by Huckabee and his kind. Think prey.
Huckabee's words about guns. Think bait.
indeed it's corporate level at this point..
is it gun 'culture'? or gun false idol consumerism 101 gone lost..
starts at education.. no wait.. starts at home.. what spell of lame right wing fascism or mindless 'stuff' media driven or holy book driven (cover up_ culture is your life under!? ha..
I think at a certain age a kid should learn to wear safety gear (eyes_ and taken a. pellet gun target shooting or b. skeet shooting... not yay my parents got me some semi auto rifles and or sub machine guns because i behave... that's nuts
Hats off to the voters in CO and WA... beacons of justice imho; for the nation for the world. ~NORML
The main obstruction I see to effectiveness of gun control legislation—besides the devotion of those who worship in the First Church of the Second Amendment—is the fact that the country is now saturated with guns, an estimated 270 million. It will take new laws and new efforts at enforcement a long time to overcome the presence of so many firearms, but the effort can be marginally successful and should be undertaken.
The question the NRA would ask:
What gun would Jesus buy?
I would note the Roman Catholic Church in this village closed some years ago. The building was purchased by a resident who turned it into a guns and ammo shop. We call it the Church of the NRA.
Pseudo-historian David Barton (author of the lying The Jefferson Lies) is out preaching his message of hatred again on his radio show. He claims liberalism destroys virtue, and is a mental disease.
And he came up with this gem:
When tolerance is a sin and hate is a virtue.
I throw that out because we're getting to the point where tolerance is a bad thing and hate is a good thing. And let me define that: we're told in, I believe it's Proverbs 4:13, it says "the fear of the Lord is to hate evil." Which means that if I'm going to stand for what God stands for, there's some certain things I have to hate: I have to hate evil, I have to hate murder – well no, you can't hate, that's a bad thing … no, hate is a good thing!
I mean hating Nazis, that's a good thing. And people say "well, you hate their philosophy, you don't hate the people." No, I hate people who want to kill other people and I'm sorry that they're killing others but the guys who were on the Nazi trials at the end, I'm sorry, I just hate what they did. Alright, I love them as a person, yes Jesus died for them, I understand, but I hate certain things.
So we've got to get to the point where tolerance is seen as a sin because we're tolerating a lot stuff that destroys our families, that destroys our own character and we can't tolerate that stuff. We have to get back to the point where hate is a virtue, at least certain kinds of hate. The fear of the Lord is to hate evil and we need to have a hatred of things and get off this fence of having no passion about anything.
What concerns me is when the haters also have guns. It is not too much of a stretch to go from "hate is a virtue" to "kill in the name of the Lord."
Now we have a gun in the house. We also live sixteen miles from the sheriff out in the country, and have wild animals (including wild dogs because travellers dump their pets out here thinking they can survive). But we don't need enough armament to supply a small infantry unit.