I know we're all different thinkers, but I'm just curious if there is a consensus view among atheists regarding firearms?

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On MACP, I understand the limitations of my training completely, but it gives me a better understanding of fighting than it does teach me how to kick ass.

 

I concur to an extent: hopefully the trainee gains some sort of understanding of the physicality involved in a drawn-out pugilistic contest and how to channel aggression when desired, or at least understand that is the idea.  I am still very frustrated that precious few units are training combatives in full kit with weapons.  Train as you fight seems to have gone out the door on that one . . .

yeah, my instructors made mention of that.  One of the most valuable things I learned was about getting to the ground to fight, and not trying to swing it out.  In all likely-hood, if I am involved in a physical altercation it will be in the US, with a civilian, when I am off duty~ people out here just want to punch their way out of things, so in that respect, the information was invaluable.  Also, the physical routine was amazing, unlike any PT I've done before, so that was a huge plus.

The general understanding of physics in combat was probably the best part, combined with actually getting to fight in a situation where I was under attack (even if not a serious threat to my life) and it gave me a lot of self confidence that I'm not completely in the dark in such a situation.  I'm in a reserve unit, and its sad to see how little training soldiers actually get before they can be shipped out to duty.. but I think that would be another topic, for another thread..

Knowledge of maintenance and handling of firearms and other highly lethal weapons is primordial. It is quite possible that all these "self defenders" brandishing firearms at robbers do not have 'what it takes' to really kill another human being, and their weapon weaving makes them a target INSTEAD of killer. As you say, knowledge of WHAT to do is most important, which to me makes a darn good case for stronger regulations regarding ownership, to prevent incompetents from ownership.

 

On the other hand, a part of me thinks the ideal system of self defence, of self and nation, is the way France used to have it, where every person did military duty, received minimal weaponry training. In  a context where "every citizen should be ready to defend the country against enemies" I could see it also being recommended that every single human being have a firearm and have regular training/maintenance inspections, as we do with motor vehicles. Motor vehicles, because of their high lethality, require that all motorists must have standardised training. I could see this as a corollary of the right to bear arms...

I concur with your statement regarding having "what it takes" to kill another human being.  Certain people do not have the ability.  Some think they do, and they don't.  Some have no idea what they are capable of until they are pressured into a situation.  Perhaps if we (as a people) spent more time getting to know ourselves on a regular basis instead of worshipping the fairy in the clouds more people would know for sure which they are.  There is nothing wrong with being either way, but to not know yourself in such a manner is a crime against you and everyone around you.

Completely agree. And I'll even admit I'm partially guilty, as do we ever really know for sure? I've always had the intimate knowledge that I do have "what it takes". But it's not knowledge, it's an impression. I have had a couple of opportunities for self defence in my life, and I did react with I think the proper amount of returned violence, but I have not handled a gun since age 14, that's 30 years ago! But I've walked streets of South Africa and South America alone, have usually been successful at "avoidance" without compromising my various geographic explorations, and have successfully come out alive and unraped. I did pull a knife on one person, in Canada. They were sufficiently impressed by the tone of my voice that I had "what it takes" that they immediately ceased. But do I? (human perception is so very faulty)

 

My government offers a free gun handling course, I think I should take it.

Indeed - it seems that the one person it is most difficult to be truly honest with is yourself.

Well like I stated in my very first reply, this is one of very few topics on which my mind has no clarity of what is the best governmental policy. My take is that it is too large a topic and needs to be divided up into a couple of sub-categories for issues of training/maintenance/licensing/calibre/distribution/inventory, etc. In Canadian politics, gun registration is a relatively hot topic. We register everything else that's lethal in life, it's the basis of our society. Now the oddest thing is that switchblades are illegal here, go figure...
My only problem with mandatory drivers training is that it forces those who don't want to drive to learn.
This seems, ultimately, to be like so much of many other important questions with fuzzy answers~ the conclusion of which is "education is key," yet you cannot force someone to receive education... At least not efficiently.  I think making everyone who is purchasing a firearm (any) for the first time to receive training on the very basic functions of the firearm, the risks associated with using the firearm, and an extensive library of resources (maybe just a list of sources) where they can better educate themselves on using it.  After that, responsibility falls on the individual, but at least the idea has been implanted in their minds.  A comprehensive, mandatory training would be impractical~ also, by separating the legal owners from the illegal owners also helps (in general) to give those who are educated even more of an advantage in such a situation..

"...yet you cannot force someone to receive education... At least not efficiently."

 

Tell that to your local school board :P

You can not force "all" areas of education, but you can't drive without a driver's licence, in most places, driver's licences involve a learning process. I don't see why weapons should be excluded from such a rational process.
They're not forced per se, however I still feel the requirement is way too low. I also feel that if you can get a license to legally carry firearms then you should be able to get one for illegal knives.

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