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Old February 26, 2009, 09:30 AM   #51
Kleinzeit
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Great post, BillCA.
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Old February 26, 2009, 04:07 PM   #52
keys85
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Let's not forget why guns are so often used. More so than a circular saw or large screw driver, a firearm is very impersonal when inflicting death. Simply put, it's like pointing a finger at somebody and pushing a button. They also get the objective completed quite easily. Granted, you can murder someone with your barehands, effectively as well. But I believe there are a lot of emotionally charged people out there willing to commit murder but can not make such a connection. For this reason, guns are to blame, and not the choice of human decision.
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Old February 26, 2009, 06:04 PM   #53
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i Will Play Devil's Advocate Here...

Devil's Advocate Here...

Devil's Advocate Advocate.

Hi... Devil's Advocate Here Again...

Ah, I Love Devil's Advocate.

Hi Chris... Devil's Advocate Here...
Be Gone, Satan!!
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Old February 26, 2009, 08:00 PM   #54
Kleinzeit
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Be Gone, Satan!!
No! We aren't done with you yet.

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guns are to blame, and not the choice of human decision
Maybe not "to blame" but they are certainly a powerful facilitator.

There is also the fact that a great deal of mystique has accrued to guns and this can make them very attractive to people who are emotionally weak. Even if screwdrivers were just as effective as weapons, they would not have this attraction.

The problem, again, is that American society has trouble seeing guns as objects. I bet there isn't so much mystique around guns in Switzerland. Maybe it comes from American society being so Christian; there is an unresolved, unconscious tension between guns and the commandment not to kill.

Dr. Freud signing out.
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Old February 26, 2009, 09:49 PM   #55
wingman
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I was raised by a mother who woke each morning gave me breakfast seen me off to school and when I returned each day she was there to greet me. That is the way we raised our children,if you can't or are too lazy to so then simply please don't have kids.


Look we are living in a broken society, failed marriages,single mothers, drugs, poor public schools and extremely angry children, don't misunderstand I am not making excuses there is never an excuse for this type of shooting but children today have 50 times the pressures I had growing up in the 40's-50's. We simply are failing as a society in morals, standards, greedy, knowing right from wrong.

This is not a gun problem but the extremes of our society.
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Old February 26, 2009, 11:20 PM   #56
Bud Helms
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Okay, long overdue to be moved to L&CR forum.

Some of us occasionally get caught up in long work hours and when we get back to TFL we play catch up. My apologies for not keeping house on this one.

Off to Law & Civil Rights ...
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Old March 2, 2009, 06:46 AM   #57
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"I was raised by a mother who woke each morning gave me breakfast seen me off to school and when I returned each day she was there to greet me. That is the way we raised our children,if you can't or are too lazy to so then simply please don't have kids.


Look we are living in a broken society, failed marriages,single mothers, drugs, poor public schools and extremely angry children, don't misunderstand I am not making excuses there is never an excuse for this type of shooting but children today have 50 times the pressures I had growing up in the 40's-50's. We simply are failing as a society in morals, standards, greedy, knowing right from wrong.

This is not a gun problem but the extremes of our society."

Yep......
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Old March 3, 2009, 02:52 AM   #58
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Originally Posted by 44 AMP
I may be getting cold and callous in my old age, but I simply don't care about why the kid did it. At all. I don't even care if he knew it was wrong. He did it (assuming the courts so rule), and therefore should be removed from society, permanently.

Isn't this like saying we should toss out self-defense as a justification for homicide? Or defense of another person? Re-read your statements in light of it being an act of self-defense (which we know it was not, but humor me).
I suppose I should have been clearer. My statment referred to shootings other than defense of self or others. I feel that an age based defense (too young to know it was wrong) like an insanity defense (couldn't understand it was wrong) should have no bearing on guilt, or punishment. To me, it matters not why, or if the shooter "understood" the consequences. If they were capable of taking a gun, loading it, pointing at someone and pulling the trigger, simply because they wished to, they are a danger to society at large. If they did it once, they could do it again. They may grow/ be cured and become someone who truly regrets what they did. That is their cross to bear. It does not and cannot change what happened to the person they shot.

Again, I don't consider self defense shooting in this category. One shoots in defense because one has to. One commits assault or murder (for what ever percieved reason) because one wants to.

shooting a pregnant woman in the back of the head while she is in bed seems to me to be about as far removed from valid self defense as one can get.
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Old March 3, 2009, 08:26 AM   #59
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One shoots in defense because one has to. One commits assault or murder (for what ever percieved reason) because one wants to.
That's true 98% of the time. But life just isn't that black-and-white. Sometimes, people who are later charged with "assault" see themselves as acting in self-defense at the time. The example given earlier of the child who was essentially being abused by his parents is a case in point. There are women who have shot their husbands after suffering years of the most terrible abuse.

This is an uncomfortable area because those of us who keep guns for defensive purposes want to know that, should something happen, we will be free from such charges. We might choose to believe then that there's a nice clear line between the people with white hats and the people with black hats, so that we can insist that we are definitely a white hat guy. But there isn't some kind of absolute clear line. There just isn't. Sure, you can find nice, clear examples where the person was definitely justified in defending themselves, and nice, clear examples of people who are definitely being criminally violent. And it will seem to you then that the world divides up neatly between them -- but only because you refused to look at all the other examples that didn't fit.

I'm not saying this to be soft or to make excuses for anyone. But you don't have to use too much imagination to realise that someone you know and care about could get caught up in an unfortunate situation where that line is being blurred, and you wouldn't want them subject to some kind of heartless, "lock 'em up and throw away the key" attitude, would you?

Quote:
If they did it once, they could do it again.
It sounds like you think everyone who ever did something wrong has some kind of inner core of evil. Do you really mean to say that you feel like you could repeat every bad thing you've ever done? And that you ought to be punished forever for all those things?

Quote:
They may grow/ be cured and become someone who truly regrets what they did. That is their cross to bear.
And a reformed person should suffer forever?

You gotta lay down that cross for a moment.

Last edited by Kleinzeit; March 3, 2009 at 09:10 AM.
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Old March 3, 2009, 10:29 PM   #60
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Let me try and be clear

(because sometimes I don't do such a great job of it)

In this situation, a pregnant woman was shot in the head while laying in bed. The person who pulled the trigger either knew it was wrong, or they didn't. Either way, the woman is dead. Either way, the killer has demonstrated that they are too dangerous to be allowed freedom.

Even if "proven" they are "not responsible" for their actions, they should not be allowed freedom, for that reason alone. Jail, mental institution, or execution, I care not, that is for society to decide, via our legal system. What matters is that they never be given the opportunity to repeat their crime.

Not knowing/understanding what you are doing is an explanation. It is not an excuse.
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Old March 3, 2009, 11:33 PM   #61
Kleinzeit
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In this situation, a pregnant woman was shot in the head while laying in bed. The person who pulled the trigger either knew it was wrong, or they didn't.
Or... They knew it was wrong legally but believed it was right morally, because of some other factor that we currently know nothing about. (I'm not saying this is likely, I'm just saying it is possible. The fact that she was pregnant doesn't make it any less likely that she did something to contribute to this. And no, I'm not blaming the victim. I'm just pointing out that we are making judgments based on very little knowledge of the situation.)

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Either way, the killer has demonstrated that they are too dangerous to be allowed freedom.
Yes. For the time being. But we don't know why that person became dangerous. It may have been in response to an extreme situation that is now over. We are in no position to decide that they've demonstrated they will be too dangerous forever.

Quote:
Even if "proven" they are "not responsible" for their actions, they should not be allowed freedom, for that reason alone. ... What matters is that they never be given the opportunity to repeat their crime.
Agreed. Abolutely. And more than that, what matters also is that they be punished for the crime they have already committed. But "not giving them the opportunity to repeat their crime" is relative; if there is no sign that they ever will repeat the crime, and there is every sign that they will not, then you don't have to kill them or lock them up forever (at huge expense to the taxpayer) to guard against that possibility.

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Not knowing/understanding what you are doing is an explanation. It is not an excuse.
Again, I agree. But imagine for a second this scenario... A guy's wife leaves him, he has a few drinks, he has an argument with a friend, he takes some sleeping pills because he can't sleep, he wakes up in the middle of the night, heart pounding in his ears, adrenaline coursing, fumbling in the dark because he heard a sound he doesn't understand, and he fires a shot... That person is really going to be hoping that others in his community will be willing to consider mitigating circumstances when the wheels of justice start grinding over him.

You know that saying, "There but for the grace of God go I"? I understand your frustration, but mercy is a powerful thing. We will all, at some time, be hoping for it from others.
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