Tomorrow is a big day for everyone, and especially all of those Gen Z-ers taking the nation by the jugular to give rise to a voice in opposition to gun deaths, and in support of common sense gun laws and school safety. It’s the March For Our Lives in response to 17 people killed by an AR-15 rifle at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. It’s also in response to the countless gun deaths that happen daily in the U.S. that we might hear about, but mostly don’t. It’s that commonplace now.
Whether or not you support enhanced gun laws or not (and please keep it civil in the comments either way), the march will give a voice to many who feel left behind by the lobbies which control so many of our public officials. It’s happening tomorrow, March 24th, 2018, in cities across the U.S. (and elsewhere), with a central march in Washington D.C. There are 687 events listed on their site, so there’s likely one near you.
In the meantime, here’s a quick take that gives some perspective on the whole issue… with cats.
Find a local march here. And, as always, keep an eye on our comment policy and keep it civil. I know this issue is divisive as hell.
Comments on Gun control explained with cats (to share before tomorrow’s March For Our Lives)
That was great!!
I’m saddened to see this, especially from a page dedicated to freedom of lifestyle. There are already a plethora of laws regarding gun control, it is already illegal to take any gun to a gun free zone, it is already illegal to kill people. The individuals who carry out these attacks don’t care that they are breaking the law, they are already finding ways around the one’s hampering the, smuggling in pure Siberia tigers, if you will. The difference is my pet tiger can independently| attack passers-by, my gun, regardless of caliber or action, can not.
I agree that violence, especially against those unable to defend themselves, is terrible, but let’s look at other causalities, that these type of attacks have and have in common with similar attacks with different weapons, like the recent knife attack at a school killing over 20 people, the recent package bombs in Austin, TX, etc. Now granted these are harder discussions than ban the scary looking guns, and harder to find a magic policy that looks simple, but I firmly believe mental health support and awareness, stopping the devaluation of life, and working on bullying prevention and defense will all go much further than a law to make it harder to own a tool.
Mentally ill individuals are more likely to be victims of violence than the perpetrators of it. The most frequently bullied students (lgbtq, religious/ethnic minorities, etc) aren’t the ones most frequently shooting their classmates. Also, I’m pretty sure other countries have mentally ill people and bullies but they don’t have an epidemic of gun violence. You need an excess of guns for that
First of all, this post equates LGBTQ and minorities with Mentally ill people not the same. Also it fails to recognize that there are whole groups of minorities that commit violent acts (such as gangs)
I like where you’re going with better mental health care and bullying prevention, however that won’t solve an excess of gun violence. They’re unrelated issues. They’re very important issues, absolutely, but different.
I’m not American, but from my understanding, stricter gun laws are just the first step there. For me it’s like, alright folks let’s treat the symptom as well as we can right now, and then we should have a bit of breathing room to find out what the ROOT of all this violence is — including knife related deaths and package bombings.
If you’re too busy mourning and arguing about freedom of lifestyle and whether or not a bunch of teenagers are getting out of line, then none of the problems you’ve mentioned are ever going to get solved. Which is a losing situation for everyone involved: it is going to cost more lives from violence (all violence), mental health initiatives will continued to be underfunded, and it is going to cost more at every level. Trauma treatment is expensive. Cleaning up murder scenes is expensive. Televised debates are expensive. And none of that even scratches the surface of what the human cost, the cost of well-being and safety and dignity for all, will be.
The city of Chicago has some of the strictest gun laws in the country. Those laws haven’t stopped gun violence there at all. About 450 people have been shot already in that city in 2018. In 2017 640 were shot.
Please tell me how stricter laws are helping those communities?
Chicago may have those laws but Illinois and the rest of the country don’t. Stricter gun laws at a federal level would work.
Actually Chicago is not one of the city with the strictest gun laws. New York, LA, San Francisco, etc. have much stricter gun laws and Chicago actually ranks 10th on the list of strictest. More people were shot in St. Louis than in Chicago in 2016 and 2017.
Also, the reason some of the numbers are so high can attribute to how easy it is to go to neighboring states – Wisconsin and Indiana – and buy guns. A good amount of the guns used in crimes (gang and non-gang related) were actually bought out of state.
Also, Illinois itself has the stricter laws. Its one of I think 5 states that you have to get a FOID card to own a gun.
The fact that gun violence has INCREASED since McDonald v. City of Chicago is an argument that stricter gun laws actually work.
And, if you want to talk about Chicago, gang violence is a socioeconomic problem caused by systemic poverty and lack of quality education in low-income areas.
I personally disagree with the idea that they are unrelated issues. I feel it is fair to say the gun violence can be boiled down to crime related (gangs, armed robbery, partner/family member violence, rape, etc) which are perpetrated by individuals already showing a disregard for legality or morality or individuals with a skewed outlook from mental illness (including sever depression that could be caused by bullying or social rejection, among other issue) causing them to act out violently, and a small number of accidental incidents (these would possibly be prevented by stricter laws, but I feel the same could be accomplished with better education and open discussion).
As for the teens protesting, I disagree with them obviously, but I fully support their right to do so, as long as they keep it peaceful.
So I guess for me, taking away my, and other responsible gun owners, rights, that were one of the founding principles of our society, will only possibly change the tool used to perpetrate these acts, as well as negating the instances where those using said rights, prevent crimes.
Full disclosure: I stopped reading halfway through your response. I say this in the nature of respect, for both you and myself. I do a lot of work with folks who are of similar backgrounds of the ones you talked about, and as part of my own mental health plan I make a habit of not engaging with it too much in my personal life. Especially since I’m not going to change your mind.
All of that aside, I feel it is important for me to bote that I am reading a lot of messages on this thread — not just yours, of course — which imply that there is a lack in nuance and perhaps some critical thinking when talking about gun violence on the part. For inatance, your comment above and the one about Chicago seem to not take systemic oppression of minorities into account, which is hugely important if you want to talk about gangs.
There is a lot of systemic violence and oppression in both your country and mine. It needs to be addressed in both. But it isn’t gang members or the mentally ill that are disproportionately shooting up schools, or killing black children in their homes, in the middle of the streets, in their back yards… It’s white men. Full stop.
So we shouldn’t have any laws at all, right?
“devaluation of life.” Hmm. Let me guess – you’re anti-choice. Why is it that folks who are anti-choice think passing laws restricting abortion will be effective, but gun control will not be?
I actually am not anti or pro choice, I havery a lot of strong feelings about both sides, and have not personally been able to reconcile this. But to play devils advocate, laws restricting a procedure preformed by a licensed medical professional, will certainly be more effective than laws effecting any and every person. I agree in that case some people would resort to illegal clinics, that could not be inspected for safety, cleanliness, ability of practitioner, etc, but the guns versus abortion argument is apples versus kumquats, not even close.
As someone who loves cats and hates guns, I wanted to like this video, but I just don’t. That’s just a really clumsy analogy in the guise of trying to be relatable or cute.
The biggest problem with this video is that it is the cat that is making the choice in the action. A gun does not make the choice. It would be like saying we should ban cat claws because some cats use them wrong and then blaming the claws for being the problem
What I am consistently at a loss about is why when we have had issues pop up in the past, laws were passed to help regulate them even if we didn’t know if they would help. They were passed because there were big issues and that was really the least we could do. Guns are more deadly but the rhetoric is to give up before even trying anything. So what you end up with now is a 13 yr old who can’t buy alcohol, a lottery ticket, cigarettes, porn, or vote…but he can walk up to a table at a gun show and buy an assault rifle in cash in a couple of minutes. Tell me why that makes sense. I respect the right to bear arms. But the message that I hear from gun owners in this debate is to never take away their guns no matter what. I never hear from gun owners a suggestion for what a realistic solution could be that would help out all of us and not just them. We have a real problem here that results in deaths everyday and of children being killed. “Fixing” the mental health of many of our citizens is never going to happen, quite frankly, given the lack of funding from government for mental health programs and also because we are somewhat broken as a culture. To improve our mental health as a nation would take generations. And as more of these mass shootings happen, that results in more trauma and more PTSD. So how are we supposed to heal as a nation if we are constantly faced with mass tragedy? Even if it doesn’t work in the long run, isn’t doing anything better than nothing? Shouldn’t we be trying absolutely everything right now so young kids can just go to school and not have to worry about how to escape a military grade weapon? This doesn’t have to be the world we live in. There are alternatives. Australia has been used as an example a lot. Yes their politicians wanted strict laws about gun ownership and gun owners were fundamentally against it. But those same gun owners today actually support the ban because they have less crime, less fear, and they just say it’s not that bad. They weren’t sure what all the fuss was about in keeping their guns.
When I was in training to become an EMT, one phrase that my instructor repeated often stuck with me, “Don’t just do something, stand there!” The point being that doing the wrong thing for the sake of “doing something” is indeed worse than doing nothing. I think it applies here just as well as in emergency medicine.
Even the most conservative ( as in low number, not political leaning) estimates of defensive gun uses significantly outnumber criminal gun uses in this country. Concealed carry license holders are statistically more law abiding than the general population, and are even statistically more law abiding than police officers. When you make guns legally harder to get, this has a disproportionate effect on the law abiding who are not the problem, and a minimal effect on the criminals, who don’t care that what they’re doing is illegal.
Most gun violence in this country is gang violence, organized criminals who already have established channels to acquire weapons that bypass legal safeguards. Gun control therefore leads to a world where criminals are just as well armed as ever, but their potential victims are not. Defensive gun uses go down, criminal gun uses have a greater chance of successfully completing their rapes, murders, and robberies. Crime goes up.
It’s like inappropriate antibiotic use. Normal flora are more susceptible to the antibiotic than the pathogens, so giving antibiotics without knowing the right one to give (for the sake of “doing something”) just increases the pathogenicity and severity of disease. Not something we should do with our entire society.
This country still hasn’t recovered from the massive increase in crime that came about as a result of prohibition. That was also an attempt to “do something” to “protect the children.”
***So what you end up with now is a 13 yr old who can’t buy alcohol, a lottery ticket, cigarettes, porn, or vote…but he can walk up to a table at a gun show and buy an assault rifle in cash in a couple of minutes. Tell me why that makes sense. ***
It doesn’t make sense because it doesn’t happen. The vast majority of sellers at guns shows are FFL holders who are legally required to perform a background check. They very few who aren’t are usually required to by the venue or choose to do so anyway because of liability. And the *very few* who don’t are still legally obligated not to sell to anyone they know or strongly suspect cannot legally buy a gun, which includes minors.
One of the main problems with gun control laws is that the laws are being written and supported by people who do not understand or see the value in the thing they are trying to regulate away. They see gun ownership as valueless if not outright bad, so it seems so obvious to make laws against it because we wouldn’t really be losing anything. But safe, responsible gun ownership is an important part of my life and my culture, as well as that of a great many people in this country. The right to carry and use a tool that makes it possible for a physically weaker person to successfully defend themselves against a physically stronger one is vital for the right to defend ones own life to mean anything. And if you don’t have the right to defend your own life, then it’s not really yours, is it?
Thank you, very well stated. I appreciate your analogies.
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