Day 67: Pro, or Contra Gun Control? National Polls and WordPress Vote

Dear all,

irrespective of my own convictions, it seems as though we all like to make claims in this debate that illustrate the desire to claim knowledge and  the representation of a larger social sentiment regarding gun control (you will find links to a few other sites that engage in this discussion form various points of view in my previous post and in a comment on it) . Why don’t we find out what the wordpress community thinks about this, just to get a feel for the nature of the discussion on this forum.

To that end: comment on this post and just answer yes, or no to the following questions:

1. should there be stricter gun control laws?

2. should guns be outlawed altogether?

3. should the events at Virginia Tech factor into this debate?

I will post a summary of the vote later and then we can continue the discussion with a feeling for what a democratically produced decision would suggest (however representative this small sample/poll may be). After all, that should be the true foundation of any democratic society. 

Feel free to disseminate this.

Here two external polls:

http://www.pollingreport.com/guns.htm

http://newsbusters.org/node/12075

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8 Comments

  1. yes
    yes
    yes

  2. May German citizens vote as well?

    Unequivocally:

    yes

    yes

    yes

  3. No times three

  4. NO
    NO
    NO

    Guns don’t kill people, violent criminals kill people…

    And already the biggest subject now is how the USA must enforce even more stringent gun laws than those we already have, well, let me give you a wonderful example of what stringent gun laws do for you: Japanese Mayor Killed by Mobster, this incident happened Tuesday, and from that story I give you this paragraph; “The shooting was rare in a country where handguns are strictly banned and only five politicians are known to have been killed since World War II.”, the bold is mine, but let me ask you this, if handguns are strictly banned in Japan, shouldn’t the mayor of Nagasaki still be alive??

  5. yes, yes, and yes.

  6. @Texas Fred:

    I do, in fact, agree with your statement. People do kill people. But people kill people for example with guns. Why is it that this argument, one which we are quite familiar with, is taken to mean that guns are therefore inconsequential in the events? That is a nonsequitur. No anti-gun person claims that regulating guns means that we do not have to address the social issues. Yet, pro-gun people argue that dealing with social issues means not having to deal with the gun issue. Does that really make sense to you? Especially, since the pro-gun answer to the social issues usually suggests: well, if we have guns we can wait until people turn violent and then shoot them. That does not appear to be the best way to avoid tragedies and after all that is what we are talking about. How about reducing the likelihood of tragedies by addressing social issues (the people) AS WELL AS other issues that are contributing factors, such as the easy access to guns?
    Also, in response to your second question. No, regulating guns will never mean that people cannot kill other people. No one claims that, so there is a logical flaw in your argument. What people do claim and what is supported by the statistics regarding gun control and violence, especially in Japan, clearly suggest that such killings will become less likely. Do you suggest we should abandon the thought to reduce crime as soon as it will not be possible to completely erase it?
    And: do you have problems with the way access to airplanes has been regulated and controlled after 9/11, or do you oppose that as well? Planes were used as weapons for terrorism and now access to them has been limited, controlled and drastically regulated. It seems as though that appears a sensible step to people. Why not gun control, which follows the same logical pattern? If you are honest, you are not talking about logical, rational reasons, but you are presenting an affective reaction and that can never be the basis for just legislation, can it?

  7. Maybe, !, sure.

    The gun-control issue to me seems so secondary to the social dissolution, alienation, etc, that give rise to events like VATech’s shooting, that considering them seems like a debate about putting a band-aid on a severed limb.

    I mean, gun-culture etc is largely a product of an entire industry’s admen–think of all the periodicals, shows, etc–and should be considered as such; regulating the sale/dispersal of firearms is not going to change this, nor is it going to change the fact that violence is de facto eroticized in much of our popular entertainment. Nor is it readily apparent that people should want to give a state that is at times incompetent and at times completely malicious further power. If we are concerned about mitigating the scope of tragedies (and it is silly to think that just instating stricter gun-control laws alone is going to do this) we need to look to the deeper state of alienation which would lead people to want to kill scores.

    In other words, fuck gun-control, look to gun-production and whether arms-manufacturers should continue to enjoy any sort of state subsidy, whether we should (duh!) control the amount of cash that corporations can dump into controlling/cultivating the psychic environment, etc. Statistics on this would be very interesting. And then we can consider less quick-fix things like individual alienation, but that, it seems, would take pages to discuss.

  8. yes
    yes
    yes

    #2 causes me to hesitate, and that hesitation is an interesting cultural symptom. Would the panthers be able to shoot back if arms were illegal. Hunting (though I’ve given up meat) would be more difficult. And in the outlying areas where there is little law enforcement, it soothes the conscience to have a gun. I don’t think any of these reasons are substantive. In fact they’re based on nostalgia and false consciousness. Nostalgia in the sense that we imagine armed conflict with our oppressors is possible, (maybe? maybe?) and false consciousness in so far as we believe a gun gives us agency, a sense of control and protection from external threats. Naturalism buries people with their guns all of the time. See Jack London’s “Koulau the Leper.”

    I’m rambling. Bottom line: take’em away, but I’d rather not be the person to take them away from my father.

    Imagine the PA rednecks in Dawn of the Dead. Romero gets that culture just right.


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