As I write this, the New York Times is asking readers to respond to the question “What should be done to prevent mass shootings?”
I submitted the following response:
“We need tough gun control laws, such as were adopted in Australia after a mass shooting there in 1996. Linking gun violence with mental health conditions, the way that Rep. Tim Murphy is doing with his Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act (H.R. 2646), is the wrong approach because, as Vanderbilt University researchers (among many other researchers) point out, “Mental illness is the wrong scapegoat after mass shootings.” H.R. 2646, if passed, would “do more harm than good,” to quote a recent Hutchinson (Kansas) News editorial. Nineteen enlightened House Democrats have explained this in a letter to the Chair and the Ranking Member of the Energy and Commerce Committee. I hope they listen. For more information, see http://realmhchange.org/statements-on-h-r-2646/.”
The more responses the New York Times receives from people who understand that the answer is gun control — not misguided legislation that would only harm those it purports to help — the more they will take notice. Please write!
Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.
The best data I found on this is in some of the articles linked here:
As this article says, the United States has an incredible 50 times as many gun deaths per 100,000 people as the United Kingdom does. This directly correlates with the United States having many, many more guns per capita than England. The pure number and availability of guns is what is deadly.
Another chart is here, showing a strong link between the rate of gun ownership and higher fatalities due to firearms in each of 50 states – http://www.vox.com/cards/gun-violence-facts/gun-homicide-effect-increase
Looking at the 50 states classified by gun ownership rate, one can see that the more guns, the more guns deaths. The unfortunate truth is that guns do kill people, it’s not just “people kill people”… and no amount of rationalizations from gun defenders can wipe away the fact that the more guns are owned per capita, the more gun deaths there tend to be in a given state or country. In other words, having more guns makes us less safe on an individual level, regardless of fantasies about the government coming to your house and killing you.
It’s not rocket science.
On the other hand, mass shootings in the USA are likely to continue every week or two for many years. Because the only solution to the pattern is to have far fewer guns, a la Australia or England. And that probably won’t happen anytime soon.
This is why incidentally I’ve stopped reading a lot of the front page news. It is just so depressing and there is no real attempt to look at the sort of data I’ve linked to above in an honest way. Better to devote one’s energy to other things.
If they want to save lives why don’t they , the NYT, focus on distracted driving ?
Federal estimates suggest that distraction contributes to 16% of all fatal crashes, leading to around 5,000 deaths every year. https://www.aaafoundation.org/distracted-driving
I don’t worry about getting shot at all, but I do worry about getting hit and smashed up in a car wreck by stupid people who insist on playing with their stupid phone wile they pilot their automobiles.
I never see people getting shot or even hear gunshots but I see nasty car wrecks on the side of the road almost weekly.
No one seems care about this real danger because its not political.
I totally agree. Cars/bad driving is a more serious and probably more easy to address problem than guns/shootings.
There’s also a couple of much bigger problems we could look at:
1) Being fat and lazy 🙂
The majority of Americans are overweight and sedentary and this harms their quality of life and kills millions of people every year via diabetes and heart attacks. I didn’t look up the statistics but I know that hundreds of thousands die every year due to complications of these lifestyle conditions, compared to “only” tens of thousands who die by gun (and most of those are suicides, I think). So many more people die due to not exercising and eating poorly than due to gun violence.
The CDC says that 400,000 plus people die every year from direct and second hand effects of smoking. That compares to about 30,000 gun deaths every year. As you said nobody talks about this real danger because it’s not politically and not emotionally affecting. But they should.
Also I would add that the several millions people stuck on antipsychotic drugs who are forced into a living death are a more important thing to address than gun violence. There are many more of them than people who get shot, suffer briefly, and then sadly pass away. And being told you have a brain disease, shot up on drugs, and being unable to work and love is a fate worse than death in many cases.
As Dan Gardner wrote about in his book the Science of Fear, humans are regularly preoccupied and obsessed with things that are emotionally exciting but relatively unimportant when looked at in a cold, logical way (e.g. gun violence). Meanwhile people are ignoring silent, less obvious things that are much more deadly on a much larger scale.
And as I always say to you cat, whether or not you have a gun, you better hope that the army doesn’t turn up with its tanks, helicopters and drones at your house 🙂 One of these days they may come, man, and then your little gun won’t help!
Don’t forget the enormous number of people who die from today’s medical treatments.
Oh, and as to “you better hope that the army doesn’t turn up with its tanks, helicopters and drones at your house 🙂 One of these days they may come, man, and then your little gun won’t help!”
Don’t say it couldn’t happen…
Ok I guess I should be a little more clear. Better hope that the tanks, planes, and helicopters don’t come to your front door and open fire. That’s why didn’t happen in this case because if it had, this woman and her daughter would have been literal toast.
But I’ve read about this case and it is absolutely awful; those particular government idiots would have deserved whatever happened for them for trying to force a young girl to take antipsychotics.
I almost never come across anyone who is worked about the 20 to 30 million persons killed by the USA since the end of WWII. Only about 1 out every 10 was a soldier. We are responsible for many dead Syrians but only get bothered by the idea of a temporary ban on their migration to this nation.
This strikes me as very irrational. I think guns have been a great red herring for people to hate and wish to ban instead of really important issues. The same goes for the whole LGBT issue. Is everyone simply a neophyte narcissist?
We as a nation like to believe we are wonderful folk, but that is simply not the case and never was. We are as wicked a people as have ever lived on this planet. Of course not everyone but certainly the glorious leaders and their minions.
The NYT has always been the creature of the Elite. And the Elite have always been fairly vile as a group.
I’m no fan either guns nor The Murphy Bill, but this issue of a murderous mindset not having some kind of alarming mental or emotional instability or distortion going on is hard for me to swallow. No, I don’t equate mental illness with violence, never have. I know that many people who live with diagnoses are extremely gentle and kind–except, perhaps, to themselves. But while there are violent people on the planet, there are those that wouldn’t hurt a fly. Some are diagnosed and some are not. I don’t think this is the dividing line for defining ‘mental illness.’
But still, with that said, unprovoked murder–whether by an extremely alienated, bullied, and enraged individual or by a trained terrorist–can only occur when there is absolutely no regard for human life in the wake of some other agenda–an agenda that disregards life.
I would not want to believe that this is acceptable, because to me, it wreaks of insanity. You can take away the guns, but that murderous mindset remains, and will continue to sabotage others when they feel inclined to do so, because a moral compass is missing. The planet is way off kilter and needs healing, not further curtailing of personal liberties. That’s only making things worse, and more contentious. At what point do we find unity, away from all this us vs. them duality?
I would not waste my breathe on the NYT. They are out and out pond scum, whether supporting our country’s murderous military adventures or military coups-notice Hilary’s
coup in Honderous, and the massive meddling in the recent elections in Venezuela and Argentina. If you think their foreign policy coverage is horrendous, which it is,’try their coverage
of Coomon Core and school privatization on for size-which is being shoved down our throats by the “liberal media,”‘and both political parties. Noam Chomsky’s dentist and his wife advised him to stop reading NYT as it was understandably causeingmhim to grind his teeth.
I do agree, any of this mainstream stuff is a black hole, and merely serves to feed the beast. Best to focus off the grid and start anew, imo. That’s certainly always an option.
Try http://www.goodnewsnetwork.org instead. Much more encouraging than reading about the 0.001% of people who are getting killed everyday.
I can understand not wanting to invest your time on the hack factory that is the NY Times, but the “low-information” public might read this survey and so might the politicians who will vote on HR 2646. I hope you’ll reconsider your decision not to write a comment that opposes the conflation of public health and law emforcement initiatives. The freedom, equality, and safety of Mad people may depend on your words.
Why replace one false solution (Murphy) with another (“gun control”)?
As long as governments such as ours make violence the bottom line in any dispute the people will reflect that mentality. But it’s too impractical to demand that government be a positive role model, right?
I come to this site for news about psychiatry, not leftist political claptrap.
But you know what????? Psychiatry and politics are all tied up together. Where do you think psychiatry got so much of its power from in the first place?
Then we should seek to un-tie them, but advocating for disarming the public is a repugnant progressive political agenda; not a way to fight the stigma of mental illness.
Articles such as this are decidedly off-message for this website (IMHO). Editorial intervention is needed.
“advocating for disarming the public is…not a way to fight the stigma of mental illness.”
Individual liberty is crucial for the survival of every human being. All of us must fight for this right. Loyal members of the democratic, the republican, or any other political party aren’t the only people who’ll suffer if HR 2646 gets passed.
The United States is about the only country in the world where mass killings by disturbed loners with easy access to guns are almost a daily occurrence. Every other country in the world has disturbed people, too, but not the endless carnage repeatedly inflicted by one nut with a semi-automatic. I dislike the singling out of ‘the mentally ill’ as IMO, anyone who thinks it’s okay to own a semi-automatic or even just a handgun to defend their property, is someone just not dealing with a full deck. I would label them ‘scary people with anger issues.’ Every country has them but their ability to act on their anger has been curtailed by gun control laws. The National Rifle Association or Big Pharma – both manipulate the script and exploit the public to their own gains.
“The United States is about the only country in the world where mass killings by disturbed loners with easy access to guns are almost a daily occurrence. ”
Here is a source
That is interesting. It makes sense that the US is not the highest/only nation with regular mass gun violence. Things are rarely all or nothing. But this article actually supports the notion that the US is at least above most other advanced nations in terms of these kind of deaths. A number of Eastern European countries included in this list have very weak policing/governments, so that must be taken into account. When comparing the US to most Western European nations, it’s near the top. Also, the US has a lot more gun deaths in general (covering 1, 2, 3 people shot dead at a time) than most countries, due to the greater pure number of guns per person here. The fact that you are about 50 times as likely to be shot dead in the US as in England really stood out to me. Surely you saw the chart I linked above stringing the strong connection between number of guns for each of the 50 US states and gun deaths.
Anyway too bad that so much energy is focused on this relatively minor argument about guns while more potentially harmfuls issues like fossil fuel depletion, global debt levels, and climate change go begging.
“I would label them ‘scary people with anger issues.’”
Well said, me too.
That should be “every other country in the world with gun control laws has disturbed people, too”
bpd, you said “But this article actually supports the notion that the US is at least above most other advanced nations in terms of these kind of deaths.” America also has the highest rate of psychiatric drugging, and I’m sure you are aware, psychiatric drugs come with a heap of side effects, including suicidal and homicidal ideation and action. And most of the mass shooters were on or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs. Guns aren’t the problem, psychiatric drugs are the problem. Oh, and the lack of respect for human life, which is perpetrated by the American government (a secret assassination list, drone strikes that kill hundreds of civilians, militarized police of shoot first ask questions later), and especially Hollywood.
AMEN Ragnarok! I was waiting to see if anyone in honest reality, unaffected by vocation or profit and preconceived incorrect notions from false clinical date, would hit the nail on the head.
The Psychiatric drugging of America and the subsequent side effects and withdrawal effects real people suffer, whether while switching people indiscriminately from one non-working drug to another, or maintaining the non-solution of toxic medication to begin with. This only serves to perpetuate the non-answer of a psychiatric disease label which fails to pinpoint the actual REAL physiological imbalance, but instead, further muddies the waters. Medication will NEVER take the place of appropriate human counseling which provides for understanding, positive brain growth with learning how to cope, and the compassion and knowledge to know how to affect this positive change. Huge numbers of infants, toddlers, children, teenagers, adults, elderly are being medicated indiscriminately and without any caution, with one or more drugs at a time. Why is American society ignoring the dismal outcomes of this practice?
Also, has anyone noticed that psychotropic medication drugging is not allowed to be suspect, and anyone who wins a lawsuit against a pharmaceutical company due to death or unintended consequences must sign a gag order in order to collect the reparations due them while the rest of the public are prevented from learning vital negatives the specific drug is demonstrating in real life?
Don’t blame the medication’s HOST, blame those responsible for creation and heavy placement throughout our society. It is not the mentally ill who are violent. Perpetuating this lie is equal to placing a ridiculous diagnosis without knowing anything about the individual’s health and life as they live it within their family dynamic. It is lazy and easy and profitable to do this, but it isn’t right. Just like the easy answer to gun violence Murphy and others before him continue to identify instead of the real, thorough, fact-finding hard work that yields the real answers, letting the blame fall in the inconvenient places where huge profits, big business/big pharma and politics lie.
Hi Ragnarok, in truth I don’t know much about the data on psychiatric drugs correlating with or causing violence. But yeah America has by far the highest rate of drugging (I think I read that it has 4% of global population, but consumes over 50% of psych drugs, which if close to true is pretty disgusting). And if drugs increase violent impulses then maybe they are contributing to these waves of violence. Honestly I don’t know.
On the other hand I do also think that having such a massive amount of guns widely available is begging for trouble. The statistic of England having 50 times fewer gun deaths than us, and the correlation between less guns and less gun violence across the 50 states, stood out to me.
On the other other hand, smoking and driving and being a fatty are more dangerous to your health than guns 🙂
anyone who thinks it’s okay to own…even just a handgun to defend their property, is someone just not dealing with a full deck. I would label them ‘scary people with anger issues.’
How insulting to people who don’t think the police will magically protect them from intruders in the nick of time. And then to dismiss them with mentalist terminology. (“A full deck”?)
This kind of simplistic liberalism will not solve the problem or help rally the kind of support we need to defeat Murphy.
Murphy only has a tiny chance of being passed as is (remember the 1-5% statistic for most bills from our forum discussion)?
Of course we should continue to oppose it to lessen its chances and to spread the anti coercion message in general.
If I am not mistaken, it is the position of the US Government brand of psychiatry that psychotic disorders are incurable. From there it would follow that anyone prescribed an anti-psychotic medication by a licensed health care practitioner more likely than not suffers from an incurable mental illness.
Whenever such a prescription is first written, the name of the patient could be automatically entered into the NICS data base of persons prohibited from firearms ownership and ammunition purchases. If the individual feels this limitation on Constitutional Rights is unwarranted, rights restoration processes are already in place with the BATF and the states.
Unfortunately, the influential NRA organization which continually lobbies against further restrictions on firearms rights is allied with Big Pharma in the ALEC political action committee. The NRA will take a strong stand against firearms ownership by the “mentally ill” but is completely silent about the products produced by Big Pharma which frequently cause homicidal and suicidal ideation as a side effect upon either ingestion or withdrawal.
RE “The NRA will take a strong stand against firearms ownership by the “mentally ill” but is completely silent about the products produced by Big Pharma”
Prominent rifle manufacturer killed in mysterious car crash days after posting psych drug link to school shooters….
The following list of mass shooting perpetrators and the drugs they were taking or had been taking shortly before their horrific actions was compiled and published to Facebook by John Noveske, founder and owner of Noveske Rifleworks just days before he was mysteriously killed in a single car accident. Is there a link between Noveske’s death and his “outting” of information numerous disparate parties would prefer to suppress, for a variety of reasons?
I’m just trying to stir the pot a little by injecting a little reason into the debate. Biological psychiatry runs from reason like pigs from a gun! Suppose each bottle of anti-psychotic “medication” displayed a “black box warning” that use of this product would result in loss of one’s firearms rights. How much business would Big Pharma loose?
Psychotic disorders are in fact cureable, as many authors like Steinman, Searles, Volkan, Murray Jackson, etc have demonstrated. Therefore, prohibiting people from ever having a right allowed to others (gun ownership, even though I’m against it) would be scapegoating and discrimination. So I don’t support the use of the false notion that psychoses are incurable/dangerous for life as a way to stop certain people having guns.
I guess my humor escaped you. All “mental illnesses” are the stuff of myth. Only reason can free us from Plato’s allegorical cave.
Ok I understand now. It can be hard to interpret humor, wit, sarcasm in online writing; as much of the tone and context from spoken words is missing. I get it now!
I will be sure and write the NYT to oppose any further attacks on the second amendment.
Check this out:
On the 29th August 2011, a US judge thankfully threw out a case involving a woman who was arrested back in March for simply being a mum. Detroit mother, Maryanne Godboldo, was charged with using a gun to hold police off as they threatened to take her daughter from her, unlawfully.
All of this happened because Maryanne refused to give her daughter a dangerous antipsychotic drug. She felt this was the only way she could protect her child from being forcefully medicated with Risperdal, a neuroleptic antipsychotic medication with a list of serious side effects, such as abdominal pain, vomiting, aggression, anxiety, dizziness and lack of coordination. We can easily see why Maryanne didn’t want to give this gem to 13-year-old Ariana!
After Maryanne refused to hand her child over to Child Protection Services (CPS), the CPS called in the police, who turned up – minus a warrant – and smashed Maryanne’s front door down before trying to forcibly take her child from her. This is terrifying behaviour from the police in the supposed ‘land of the free’, and things got worse when a heavily armed special weapons and tactics (SWAT) team arrived on the scene and a 12-hour standoff ensued.
Give us your child to be shot up forcefully with Risperdal, If that’s not tyranny what is ?
The historical reality of the Second Amendment’s protection of the right to keep and bear arms is not that it protects the right to shoot deer. It protects the right to shoot tyrants, and it protects the right to shoot at them effectively, with the same instruments they would use upon us. If the Jews in the Warsaw ghetto had had the firepower and ammunition that the Nazis had, some of Poland might have stayed free and more persons would have survived the Holocaust.
Read more http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/jan/10/the-right-to-shoot-tyrants-not-deer/
And what really funny is now the left wants to disarm Americans wile simultaneously letting in Syrian “refugees” with ISIS fighters hiding among them !!
Its like they WANT to destroy America.
But if the government ever attacks us, it’s own citizens, it will not be using the same kinds of weapons that we will be using. Cluster bombs are great for taking out a large group of people. Our police are already militarized to the point that they often look like the Army when they go out to confront groups of people. Any rising against the government won’t last one week because of what the politicians and the armed forces will do to people.
More Jewish people would have survived the Holocaust if they’d gotten out sooner. They saw the problems developing but couldn’t believe that their neighbors would attack them and allow the things to happen to them that did happen. They were fifth and sixth generation Germans by birth and couldn’t believe that their citizenship wouldn’t protect them from what was gong to happen. Same as what happened in this country to the Japanese Americans, who were second and third generation Americans, born on this soil. But their citizenship wasn’t good enough and they got put in detention camps behind barbed wire, after their businesses, homes, property and bank accounts were all taken by the government, and the politicians. This was done by both the Left and the Right by the way.
“Any rising against the government won’t last one week because of what the politicians and the armed forces will do to people. ”
I don’t think so https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guerrilla_warfare It would go one for years.
But bullies are usually cowards so the best thing is that having an armed population prevents things ever from getting to that point.
One thing I will never get is the thinking by the people behind the attack on Maryanne Godboldo and her daughter.
I can only guess its NAZI like “just doing my job” thinking, I couldn’t do it, I mean WTF you want me to smash in this woman’s door and kidnap this child to be imprisoned and shot up with needles full of Risperdal ? I am not doing that so I quit this job see you later and screw you guys I am going home cause I know right from wrong.
But history shows us over and over that psycho leadership combined with “just doing my job” automatons leads to all kinds of nasty atrocities.
The story of Maryanne Godboldo shows us that we have not had some sort of renascence and that tyranny is alive and well not something you find only in the history books.
Mother Faces Down Swat Team & Tank For Refusing to Drug Daughter https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6hIlo7KD2L0
Big psychiatry in our lives is how the left takes “care” of our “needs”.
The left gives us things like funding for mental health screening and psychiatric drugging in schools.
I have been reading the posts and commenting on MIA for a couple of years. It seems to me that most people who post here lean to the left and those that don’t fall on the Libertarian side. Szasz was a libertarian, at least in his later writings. Just as those on the left on MIA voice their opinions on other political issues, so did Szasz. What he are up against as psychiatric survivors really is not an exclusively right-wing or left-wing assault on our civil liberties. Congressman Murphy is a Republican and Senator Murphy is a Democrat. Someone on my Facebook page who is a self-identified leftist and member of the Green Party posted a link to E. Fuller Torrey who was highly critical of Ronald Reagan, and of course as everyone knows on MIA,’highly inflammatory against people diagnosed with “severe mental illness.”
Correct. Neither the Right nor the Left are friends of those of us labeled as “mentally ill”. They just go about trying to control us in different ways, although both groups are now using the idea that we need more “treatment”, all for our own good of course.
Case in point:
This article from a ‘liberal’ site is chilling…
Agree the site is chilling but it doesn’t prove that the left has a monopoly on wanting to push aversive mental health treatment.
On a related noted, everyone was bemoaning the fact that the Justina Pelletier case occurred in an “evil” liberal state. Then on this site, an article was posted about a similar type case occurring in Alaska in which last I checked was run by Republicans.
Stephen Gilbert, as usual, nails the issue about neither the right or the left being our friends.
I, of all people, was not saying that…the ‘case in point’ was only to offer proof that the left were just as bad as the right for promoting the myth that the ‘mentally ill’ are *violent*, and are quite willing to do away with civil rights in the ‘right’ instances.
The failure of the so-called “progressives” to address or even recognize the problem is a bigger crime than the corresponding lapses by “conservatives,” as the left is what most idealistic and humanistic people look to for leadership. Right now they are being led astray big time and this needs to be seriously addressed if we have any hope of defeating Murphy (&/or whatever else they decide to throw at us).
There is not a very strong connection between mass shootings and any form of feasible gun control and that should be obvious. If all guns were confiscated the bad guys would still manage to get guns as there would be a thriving black market quite soon. How successful has the war on drugs been? Well, more drugs at a more affordable price than before the war! Otherwise, if several persons in San Bernardino had been well trained gun owners the massacre might never have gone very far.
Then we have to ask ourselves how real these events really are. The eye witnesses say there were three big athletic white men who did the shooting–as opposed to two rather small middle easterners. What did happen? The same sort of contradictory information has come out of most of these mass shootings. Something is wrong. According to the couples’ attorney who had spent three hours with the FBI the couple was found dead and bound in the back of the vehicle. Until or unless we begin to get trustworthy information on these events we can not talk about prevention.
Finally these all take place in GUN FREE ZONES. Apparently the perpetrators do not abide by the law.
Some of your points are good but the one about trained gun owners stopping the massacre sounds doubtful. I can’t recall hearing about a recent mass shooting where a good guy with a gun managed to stop the bad guy and thus stop the carnage. Any of several things might be going on… good people don’t carry their guns around a majority of the time… good people, having likely never been in a life or death terrorist situation before, are too slow to act or too shocked to do anything when the shooting starts… in a combat situation, good people become worse shots than criminals who are mentally prepared for what they are going to do… good people are too concerned about accidentally shooting other good people… the time is takes for good guys to get out their gun and undo the safety is too long… or good people are often cowards who tend to run, with their survival instincts taking over, rather than becoming a hero and fighting back. In any case, it’s pretty clear that in the vast majority of situations good guys with guns are not there are don’t do anything to help for a variety of interconnected reasons.
I’d like to see a statistic for what proportion of the time do law abiding gun owners actually carry their guns on them. I bet it’s not that high.
Again as I said above, this is interesting stuff to speculate about, but not all that important. People killed in war, obesity/lack of exercise, smoking, fossil fuel depletion, debt levels, climate change, are all much more important issues in terms of sheer number of people harmed than guns. As usual most Americans are focused on their bright shiny objects and too ignorant to realize how relatively unimportant guns are.
Remember these massacres occur in gun free zones. The law abidding citizen leaves his gun at home. Or, why then are the important persons always accompanied by gun totting security personnel? If having someone present with a gun is of no use why pay money for nothing?
The Wild West according to researchers was less wild than now partly because the people were generally more well behaved but also because almost everyone was armed. Maybe we should also ban automobiles because they kill people.
I would say this is apples and oranges. Important figures like the president are constant targets; gun-toting guards surrounding him are specially trained and constantly on the alert for potential threats (well, with the secret service who knows?!); that is their job. Perhaps they are a deterrent; it’s hard to know what would happen if they were not there. But ordinary citizens cannot function in the same way, perhaps unfortunately; they often lack the training and they have to do other jobs and functions.
Maybe it would make a difference having guns in these currently gun free zones, but given that there already exists a strong trend toward fewer guns per capita resulting in less deaths, why not alternately consider having fewer guns? A lot of strong correlational evidence and some causative evidence suggests that fewer guns means less deaths overall (see the study of 50 states linked above, and the study of nations including England’s rate of 50 times less gun deaths per capita than the US – if the hypothesis about bad people just getting guns and continuing the same rate of killings is correct, why doesn’t that happen in England, Japan, Australia?). I’m not against guns per se, I just don’t think it makes us safer having a lot of them around, and I certainly don’t think it does anything to protect us against our government if the government chooses to use the military grade of weapons they have against gun-bearing citizens.
The answer is we can probably never know for certain which way is right; but it doesn’t matter that much because other less emotionally-charged things are much more dangerous and deadly than guns.
I agree with AgniYoga.
BPD, you of all people should know the harmful side-effects of psychiatric drugs. Most of these mass shootings were done by people on or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs. Sure, guns were used to inflict harm, but it was the drugs that caused these kids to flip out. The problem is the drugs, not the guns.
Many of these mass shootings were done in gun free zones. Gun control just means removing the guns from the hands of law abiding citizens and even turning them into criminals for having a gun. The bad guys don’t obey the law. Gun free zones are targets for the bad guys. It’s a shooting gallery. The best way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. But when the good guys don’t have any guys, the bad guys won’t be stopped. And what, you’re supposed to rely on the police? Some bad guy starts shooting up a shopping mall and you’re supposed to wait how long for the police? If a bad guy came to your home and threatened you and your family, would you really be fine with just sitting back and letting them terrorize your family while you wait for the police, if you could even call them? How long does it take for the police to arrive? 10 minutes? Half an hour? Do you really want to wait that long for help when you could shoot back at the bad guys and chase them off or end the threat within a minute or two?
France has gun control. Did that stop the previous two mass shootings? Nope. But it did mean there were a lot of civilian casualties because the people had no way to defend themselves.
I’ve said it before. Gun control is less to do with guns, and more to do with control. It’s about those in power wanting absolute power. It’s about those in control wanting total control. Gun control will just result in the bad guys and the government, which are frequently the same, having all the guns and all the power. Do you really want to give the government a total monopoly on violence? The biggest threat to human life in the past few hundred years has not been terrorists, or man made climate change (which doesn’t exist), or bacteria, or smoking. The entity that has killed the most people is government. And if you think the American government are the good guys, and not the corrupt psychopaths that they are, then you may aswell put yourself in chains and aim a gun at your own head, because it’s all over for you.
The 9 scariest words in the English language are “I’m from the government and I’m here to help”
Haha there is so much here to argue and debate about. Let me try to argue with you on a few points Ragnarok.
First of all, “me of all people”? Do you secretly know who I am? 🙂
But yeah I do know quite a bit about psych drugs and I agree they are very harmful in a multitude of ways.
Because I’m being lazy I went to Wikipedia to look up some gun stats. And I found this:
So I see that the US has about 10.5 gun deaths per 100,000 people of all kind per year. Some countries have more – mostly those with ineffective governments that cannot police/imprison violent criminals or gangs, I think. Also, weaker economies that contribute to crime. For example, many of the Central American, African, and South American quasi-dictatorships on this list like Venezuela, Panama, Swaziland, South Africa, etc… they have rates between 15-40 gun deaths per 100,00 people per year.
But then you have the following averages:
South Korea 0.06
United Kingdom 0.26
Obviously many factors go into these averages. I think the island countries (UK, Australia) have an advantage as it’s harder for criminals to come right through their borders with guns. But the difference between these numbers and the US having more than 10 deaths a year is pretty stark (about 50 times as many per person as in England, 200 times as many as in South Korea).
Either the US is full of some pretty violent bloodthirsty people, or perhaps having fewer guns really is a good idea… and people would be safer if we got rid of almost all guns (like Korea, Australia, England), rather than having loads of guns everywhere alongside gun free zones as in the US. I’ve already made points above about good guys not being ready physically or psychologically, and being more careful not to strike bystanders, once the bad guys open fire. That problem won’t go away. And bad guys will adapt to it.
As for guns defending us against the government, get real! The government has Abrams tanks, Apache helicopters, F35 jets, aircraft carriers, nuclear subs, nuclear ballistic missiles. You have a little gun. Good luck.
I meant “you of all people” in that I’ve seen many of your posts and you seem pretty educated on psychology/psychiatry and psychiatric drugs. If you would rather I act like I don’t know you and assume you are a dumbass, I can do that.
You are looking at gun deaths per year related to different countries. Yes, countries that have less guns will have less gun deaths. That’s one of those “Well duh” comments. But how many of those were suicides? How many accidents? Yes, a gun makes those things much more likely. It would also artificially inflate the numbers. A better statistic to use would be how many deaths/murders per year in each country (and not just by guns). Agreed, having easier access to guns would make it easier to kill people with guns, but it would also make it easier to defend yourself from someone else with a gun. And how many of those deaths were due to someone on or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs that made them homicidal when they otherwise would not have been?
I’ve often seen the gun control in Australia being used as an example for how to control America. Firstly, Australia never had the gun culture that America has. Last reports I heard there were about 350 million guns in America, which is about one per person? Do 350 million people go on murderous killing sprees? Do 350 million people shoot up other people? If that were the case Americans would be extinct. There are bad (and good) people in every culture. You can’t blame the many good and law abiding people because of a few bad ones. Back to Australia, sure some people would have had guns for personal protection (shotguns or pistols), but the majority of weapons were single shot bolt action rifles owned by people living on farms/rural areas and used to hunt pests (kangaroos, foxes, rabbits, etc). We never really had the guns for fun, they were for practical purposes. What works in one country will not necessarily work in another.
You say that the good guys are not physically or psychologically prepared to deal with an active shooter situation. I agree and disagree. I’m not talking about your average joe, the housewife and mother of two and a half kids, who gets a gun to carry around in her purse in case of a mugger. That person would not be prepared to deal with a shooter. I’m talking about the concealed carry owner, the one that goes to a shooting range and knows how to use their weapon. They would be far more prepared. But when you get right down to it, a trained cop or army officer who has been trained will generally freak the hell out the first time they are put into a real combat situation. That being said, how many of these bad guys with guns feel great shooting up a room full of unarmed civilians, and how many of these bad guys would freak the hell out themselves if someone shot back?
You say “As for guns defending us against the government, get real! The government has Abrams tanks, Apache helicopters, F35 jets, aircraft carriers, nuclear subs, nuclear ballistic missiles. You have a little gun.” Isn’t that one of them strawman arguments? Or a red herring? Or I dunno which, the many types of those arguments confuse me. The government has nuclear bombs aswell! Good luck fighting off a nuclear bomb with an AR15, right? That’s a stupid argument. Bombs/missiles cost WAY more than bullets. Bombs also destroy the surrounding infrastructure. If you want to keep a city and buildings intact you aren’t going to bomb the place, unless it’s a last resort because you can’t round people up or take them out on the ground, you know, with regular guns. Bombs and missiles are great if you don’t care about the infrastructure in place, but if you want to keep it, those things are way to destructive.
Most of the world has already been disarmed (except for governments of course). The psychopaths in power are pushing for a globalist agenda. Absolute power and total control of everything and everyone, everywhere, all the time. We are being marched towards a global surveillance/police state. Americans are some of the few who can actually fight back. Are you so quick to give up your defenses and let the psychopaths in power gain total control?
Let’s forget about the government for a moment. We’ll just pretend the governments are run by the good guys who have our best interests at heart and want to help and protect us instead of serving globalist and corporate agendas while selling the people out. What would you do in the face of a zombie apocalypse? If the dead rose and started eating peoples faces off, would you really be okay with the police and governments being the only ones with weapons to defend the people? Do you really think they would/could?
You wouldn’t assume someone you don’t know at all is a dumbass, would you? 🙂 Unfortunately this happens a lot online (but I haven’t seen you do it).
I don’t think things with government are so bad. Most people who work in government, at least below the very top level, are simply everyday people trying to earn a living and take care of their kids. As for Congressmen and Senators, that may be a different story. There I think you have more narcissistic individuals who are heavily influenced by money and power. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re sociopaths or evil (but perhaps a minority of them are sociopaths, to varying degrees).
I don’t view things in this paranoid way, i.e. that people are constantly watching me and controlling me and that government is inherently evil. It depends on what type of government and how it’s run. I think people in American government don’t even know who I am and don’t give a F about what I’m doing as long as I don’t do anything overtly illegal. Sure they could read my emails and intercept my phone calls (and I know the NSA already can do this), but I’m much too unimportant for them to care what I’m actually saying; plus most people in government are primarily preoccupied with themselves and their own family/friends, not with other unknown citizens. I’m still pretty free to work and relate as I want and I have no real interaction in my everyday life with the government; may it stay that way.
So I don’t have any defenses. If the government thugs want they can come and get me any evening at my house right outside Washington DC. But they keep not turning up. They must not be that interested in me. I’ll have to start doing more things to attract their interest!
And if zombies did come, I would trust our military to use its deadly weapons against the zombies. Luckily the zombies are not coming 🙂
But if you never hear from me again on here you’ll know what happened; one of the zombies got me!
Your naivete about this system we live under is stunning, and dangerous. I think it goes back to the issue of recognizing privilege, which was briefly discussed in Sera’s sexism article a short while ago. Also you seem to think that this has something to do with “good” and “bad” individuals when, again, it is the system that is the problem. This government functions to serve the interests of capital, not of people. The only “values” it is concerned about are dollar values.
Also when are you going to stop using medical model terminology?
So once again the needed discussion around Murphy is diverted into arguing about irrelevant issues.
It is not our responsibility to solve the issue of “violence” as a prerequisite to demanding justice and the defeat of totalitarian legislation such as Murphy. Thinking we do is a trap!
One can enjoy a spirited argument about a given (unrelated) topic and still remain focused on other goals.
The function of this article has been to foment division and diversion. By falsely posing the the issue as “anti-Murphy vs. anti-gun” it sets people on both sides off on excited rants about guns and sends others off on irrelevant tangents.
Again, it’s not our responsibility to solve the “problem of violence” but to point out the fraudulent way in which language is being manipulated to equate the psychiatrized with such, and to oppose that.
In a response to Noel Hunter’s recent article on persecuting witches, Seth Farber wrote “the Murphy bill and scapegoating of the ‘mentally ill’… ought not to be seen in isolation–it is part of the trend to elimination of democratic processes in the US and transformation of the US into a distinctive kind of totalitarian state.”http://www.madinamerica.com/comment-history/?id=125
Even if the current bills go down — and I think you’re way too confident about that — if the powers-that-be want this law they’ll find ways to keep slipping it back into the legislative grinder in different guises once everyone thinks the threat is over, or will try to rush it through as an “emergency” measure in response to some event.
By falsely posing the issue as “anti-Murphy vs. anti-gun” …
I meant “anti-Murphy vs. anti-gun control” Sloppy typo, sorry…