The Mancunion

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America and her rampant gun addiction

It is a remarkable task to make Piers Morgan appear rational, but he isn’t wrong about gun control in the USA

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It is a remarkable task to make Piers Morgan appear rational; it is even harder to make him seem anything akin to a moral compass. Despite this, resident gun nut and ardent republican Alex Jones was able to simultaneously achieve both in 2013 when he appeared on CNN’s Piers Morgan Live.

“Hitler took the guns, Stalin took the guns, Mao took the guns, Fidel Castro took the guns, Hugo Chavez took the guns… 1776 will commence again if you try to take our firearms.” As convincing an argument as this is, I think we all essentially agree that Jones is somewhat deranged. What is concerning, however, is that his views don’t serve as a binary to the mainstream.

Set this to the backdrop of the shootings of three young Muslims in North Carolina by self proclaimed ‘gun-toting atheist’ Craig Hicks, and this becomes quite disconcerting.

Statistics tell us that the United States loves its firearms. Take, for example, 100 Americans; average statistics dictate that they will possess between them 88 weapons. Taking into account collections—one person owning multiple arms—that is still a hell of a lot of ‘gun-toting’ civilians.

That’s a high percentage of normal people, like you and me, who possess an efficient and completely legal means of disposing of human life.

The argument still stands that, “guns don’t kill people, humans do,” but this is surely undone when considering as an example the War on Drugs: Drugs, which were already illegal, were clamped down on by the Nixon administration with a iron fist, and perpetrators of drug-related crimes were locked up.

While its successes are still somewhat hazy, it was essentially the intent to take away what we, the population, couldn’t be trusted with. The basic equation for the War on Drugs was that drugs ruin lives, and that as the public couldn’t regulate their use of drugs, they were ‘taken away’.

Agree or disagree with the outcomes and the need for a war on drugs, this is at least a consistent train of thought. Compare this to the US’s problem with guns however, and the failure of response is staggering.

In 2010, 9960 people were murdered with a firearm in the US. In the UK, this figure was 39. Murders with firearms account for 60% of all murders in the US, while the number of murders in the UK as a whole is 58% lower. The land of the free has a huge problem when it comes to violent crime.

Without too heavily hammering the statistics, 4.5 deaths per 100000 in the US is caused by a firearm. To put that into context, the US has a higher gun-related death rate than Pakistan, and is just 0.7% behind the Democratic Republic of Congo. Arms-related deaths in the US are not that far behind a country feeling the aftershock of civil war, where democracy is something that remains completely unfulfilled.

On a microcosmic level the issue becomes even more shocking. In a graphic published by The Atlantic online, Detroit was evidenced to possess the same murder rate as El Salvador. This becomes all the more incredible considering the fact that in 2012, El Salvador celebrated its first ‘murder-free day’ in three years. Detroit has the same murder rate as a nation where the armed forces are required to control the streets.

It is true that the US does have some regulation surrounding firearms. Unlike the certainty and coherency of the war on drugs however, the manifesto designed to control arms is nonsensical. Seven states have regulated the possession of an assault rifle, while, paradoxically, 30 states have regulated the possession of a handgun.

This evidences some progression for example in New York and New Jersey, where assault weapons have been banned outright. The paradox however is that a large number of states have assessed their gun laws and come to ridiculous conclusions. What rational individual would consider the regulation of handguns an issue worthy of dealing with, while allowing the perpetuation of lax licensing of assault rifles?

The clue is given away in their name alone. Assault rifles are designed with assault firmly in mind. How the possession of heavy duty weaponry like that is compatible with a safe environment seems lost on almost the entire world.

The popular response of gun advocates, such as Charlton Heston, is that Switzerland is never rebuked with such criticism. Despite all men between 20 and 30 storing their personal weapons at home the country was host to just forty homicides in 2010 related to firearms. Likewise they have one of the lowest homicide rates of any country.

A strong response then from the pro-gun campaigners. That is until you consider that all men in Switzerland are armed with a firearms in accordance with their conscripted military service and training. These are not arms bought and sold in Wal-Mart. These are trusted to those trained in their use and considered responsible enough to hold them in their homes.

An argument leaning on the Second Amendment is likewise as deeply flawed as Alex Jones’ capacity for reason. The conservatism that dominates American thought has a detrimental effect on the progression of their society away from widespread arms ownership. While the Second Amendment does declare the rights of all men “to keep and bear arms,” the Constitution must be considered an evolving document.

The originalists in American politics would disagree. Those such as Jones, who consider the Constitution a static document of prevailing truth, would, it would appear, have the right to bear arms maintained in the face of any objection.

This pseudo-religious treatment of an antiquated document cannot be shaken. A two-year-old child shooting his 12-year-old sister dead in Philadelphia cannot dampen the belief of such dogma. This is a system of belief so deeply entrenched that it cannot be deconstructed by statistics.

It must feel impossible that a society can progress in the face of such backward attitudes. Guns are totally incompatible with the suppression of aggression and the improvement of safety. Despite the seemingly irreversible attitudes prevalent in the US, widespread acknowledgement of the clear flaws in American gun legislation is making a difference. The world’s media is beginning to rebuke such ideas and, as already mentioned, there has been some progression.

What remains to be seen, however, is how contagious this progression can be.

  • asihu

    “4.5% of deaths per 100,000 in the US is caused by a firearm.”????

    • Editor

      Hi asihu,

      Thanks for pointing this out. I have double checked and I believe the author meant to say 4.5 deaths per 100000.

      Thanks,

      Marcus.

  • Chris

    What a croc. This boils down to control. Gun control zealots want government in control = pass laws to disarm citizens.
    Gun Rights supporters want their fellow citizens to have control = Right to bear arms. Our entire country is founded on the basis of individual Rights – The People. These Rights are inalienable, not subject to mob rule or nanny-state politicians.
    Anytime you see a concerted effort to remove or restrict Rights from the Citizens and hand over the power to government – be cautious. This is the very same reason our country was founded and why our Rights are protected.

    • Barry Hirsh

      I’d say that “be cautions” doesn’t quite cover it. I’d say “sound the klaxons”.

  • Barry Hirsh

    Might it be that Americans love their guns because the empowerment of individual liberty their ownership manifests is a core element of America’s heritage?

    Might it be that the Framers intended the scope of the guarantee to encompass small arms on a par with standing armies? After all, at the time of ratification, there was no difference between small arms owned by the people and small arms issued to foot soldiers.

    Might it be that the USSC recognized that fact in 1939, when the Court held that “[T]he declaration and guarantee of the Second Amendment . . . must be interpreted and applied with that end in view.”? (UNITED STATES v. MILLER, 307 U.S. 174 (1939) 307 U.S. 174)

    Might it be that “Constitutional rights are enshrined with the scope they were understood to have when the people adopted them, whether or not future legislatures or (yes) even future judges think that scope too broad.”? (DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA v. HELLER (No. 07-290) 478 F. 3d 370, affirmed.)

    Might it be that ‘evolved’ progressives have wandered so far off the reservation that they literally are not American anymore?

    “Ain’t nothin’ like the real thing, baby…”

    • Roj Blake

      It’s worth noting that the American right to bear arms and love of individual liberty came out of England. Sadly for the UK the First was surrendered long go, and the latter is on life support.

      • Barry Hirsh

        Indeed. However far ‘American’ progressives have wandered off-course, Britain is light years ahead of them. I believe that Britain’s affliction is due to its people’s historical acquiescence to monarchial subjugation, which isn’t limited to GB. If you’ll recall, we had a bit of a tiff over that circumstance….

        Progressivism is a political disease, and like a cancer, it takes over liberty cell-by-cell and eventually chokes the life out of the host.

  • Notes From The Man Cave

    Clean the drool and spittle off of your faces you brainless morons.

    • bob

      Enlightening comment.

  • Robert Naess

    And you have conveniently forgotten the tens of thousands of firearms donated to England at the beginning of WWII by citizens of the U.S. because you did not have your own? Wasn’t that nice of us? No credit there for the whole notion of the 2nd Amendment? Not to mention tens of thousands more produced by the U.S. and given to you under Lend Lease so you could protect your little Island. No credit the for the U.S. either? How many English lives were snuffed between WWI and WWII because of nearby foreign governments tyrannising their citizens on behalf of fascistic ideologies and were able to do so because their citizens were disarmed?
    You have absolutely no legitimate moral position to denigrate the 75,000,000 firearms owners in the U.S. who own and handle firearms with no criminal or destructive consequences. Shame on you, hypocrite!

    • John

      You do realise that the 2nd amendment has absolutely no relevance on the ability of the UK to acquire/buy guns during the Second World War? The UK could still buy guns from the USA even if there was no 2nd amendment. The arms trade is very lucrative.
      Also the lend lease act has nothing to do with the 2nd amendment.

      • Robert Naess

        Yes, of course I realize what you point out, but the fact remains that the U.S., both the citizens and the government, provided your country with vast quantities of weapons when you NEEDED them. Private possession of firearms in the USA does exactly the same thing for the citizen under the 2nd Amendment: provides recourse to a weapon when it is NEEDED. Defensive gun use by armed citizens, mostly display of a weapon in order to deter a criminal attack or behavior, occurs many times every year, saving many people from wounding or death. This has been well documented by reputable sources and research. Those of you who despise firearms NEVER recognize the fact that US citizens use firearms responsibily 99% of the time and that criminal misuse is a very small percentage of the total number of guns owned and used. Again, no credit for responsible firearms possession by the gun haters.
        Why don’t you mention the current high incidence of violent crime in GB?
        Firearms are only one element in crime, not the whole picture. GB’s crime statistics are way higher than the U.S.

        • Sarah

          Firstly this article in no way aggrandises Great Britain, so im not sure why so many responses level on the nation. However since you decided to delve into a cross comparison:

          The higher number of violent crimes in GB can be quite simple accounted for by the differing definitions of ‘violent crime’ in British and American law.

          By British law: “Violent crime contains a wide range of offences, from minor assaults such as pushing and shoving that result in no physical harm through to serious incidents of wounding and murder. Around a half of violent incidents identified by both BCS and police statistics involve no injury to the victim.” (THOSB – CEW, page 17, paragraph 1.)

          By US law: “In the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, violent crime is composed of four offences: murder and non-negligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. Violent crimes are defined in the UCR Program as those offences which involve force or threat of force.” (FBI – CUS – Violent Crime)

          So essentially the ultimately higher figures can be accounted for by the fact that ‘violent crime’ is a wider spectrum in Britain.

          Ref:
          The Home Office Statistical Bulletin – Crime in England and Wales 2010/11 Findings from the British Crime Survey and Police Recorded Crime. (2nd Edition) (abbreviated to THOSB-CEW)
          The Federal Bureau Of Investigation – Crime In The United States 2011 (abbreviated to FBI – CUS – Violent Crime)

        • John

          I would like to see the evidence, if any, that heavy weaponry has deterred a criminal intending on committing a crime. There are no ‘reputable’ sources of which you speak of. Consequently, this is why gun crime is so high in the USA.

          I would also like to see the evidence of a successful armed citizen preventing a crime (with the intent of mass murder) because the police were unable to deal with it. (when you look, you will realise that there are very few cases which is where your argument ultimately falls down on.

          When you have done that, look at the difference I definitions of violent crime in the UK and USA.

          • Sarah Brown

            John everything you’ve just said couldn’t be more true. I have actually posted the definitions about and Adam has posted the statistics for successful civilian interventions below.

          • Robert Naess

            http://www.buzzfeed.com/ryanhatesthis/10-potential-mass-shootings-that-were-stopped-by-someone-wit#.ghK1VmpArr

            Now you are just being foolish and I will not do your research for you. You are obviously capable of researching these issues on your own, but refuse to educate yourself on the breadth of the issues. Like most anti-gun proponents, you refuse to acknowledge the many, many positive uses of privately owned firearms. Again, the misuse of firearms in the US constitutes less that 1/10th of 1 percent of the privately owned firearms, even including suicides, which is not misuse of a firearm. Until there is recognition by the gun banners that the vast majority of firearms are not used irresponsibly or criminally and that defensive use of firearms against criminal intent is widespread and desireable, and that the evidence is overwhelming that US citizens can be trusted with firearms, the banners will be ineffective at any kind of dialogue or meaningful change in the laws.
            You have changed the subject to “mass shootings” from the original issue. As far as defensive firearms use in the US there are several decades of research by many different individuals and organizations which you can choose to read or not. It is my experience that anti-gun proponents never read any of the research but only glibly quote various talking heads and and Internet anti-gun sources and the dramatically high level of ignorance about firearms is evident. Nothing new there. I read Everythiig I can find pro and con, and have been reading about firearms history, constitutional history of the 2nd Amendment, Bill of Rights, use and misuse of firearms, and the many, many sources of information and related research about private possession of firearms in the US since I was in high school in the early 1960s.
            Educate yourself; you are just spouting rubbish.

            • John

              Instead of sprouting rubbish, perhaps you should check your reference links.
              All those in that link who stopped a mass shooting with their own firearm were trained in the use of firearms either by law enforcement or in a military context – a bit different to your average Joe walking around with an assault rifle. Moreover, your source is pretty poor for your argument since in all cases, the shooting had already started and people had been injured and/or killed before they were stopped. So it undermines your entire argument and you have proved nothing.
              Next time, look at your link before you reference them. Because you are looking a bit of a fool.

  • Geoffry K

    There go the liberals again, restricting the deaths to one weapon. Try this:
    https://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2013/09/11/uk-violent-crime-rate-eight-times-higher-than-the-us/
    And we have more like 300 million guns owned by about 100 million of us. That is an average of 3 per person, I have 5 and will have another next month.

    • Barry Hirsh

      And what is also lost in all the hoopla is that if 90% of gun owners rolled over and surrendered their arms, it would leave 8-10 MILLION pissed off gun owners to redress the situation.

      If you think the U.S. government isn’t aware of this fact, you’d be wrong. And that, dear friends, is why the Framers included the 2A.

  • Roj Blake

    What a load of tripe! BTW Alex Jones is not a member or supporter of the Republican Party, even a casual read of wikipedia could have told you that. I strongly recomend people listen to Alex Jones’ radio show (can be found daily on many Youtube channels) and judge for yourself rather than rely on this ignorant article. Jones has many interesting and informed guests including government, tech, and financial sector insiders. Jones’s operation isn’t even exclusively American he has a couple of great British journalists working for him.

    • Barry Hirsh

      The problem most folks have with Jones is that his analyses, despite being supported by intensive investigation, are so far “out-of-the-box” that they can’t relate. It is human nature to trust things to which one has become accustomed, and to reflexively reject “radical” notions without giving them due consideration.

      You know, like “The world is round, and revolves AROUND the sun.” in C.E.1492?

      Or like “WE hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights…” in C.E.1776?

      The state of nature is unencumbered liberty. Civilizations, if they are to survive, must work in harmony with natural law, not in opposition to it. It cannot be repealed, and it will not be shunned. Works of men that defy natural law are doomed from the outset.

      • Roj Blake

        Well yes, judging from the comments here most readers of the Mancunion are hardcore statists that can’t even separate their identity from that of their government. I still feel it’s worthwhile commenting in such places as this because if we open just one person’s mind or alert one isolated lover of liberty and truth that they are not alone, then it’s time well spent.

        • bob

          Most readers on this site are well informed and well educated British students. This a high quality is a student newspaper.

          • bob

            This is a*

          • Roj Blake

            If they’re like you they’re certainly well indoctrinated and closed minded. There was nothing quality about the original article or any of your comments.

    • Editor

      Hi Roj,

      Thanks for pointing out the error. It was intended by the author, and I have double checked, to be republican with a small r. A term we use, in the UK (I’m unaware of the terminology in the US but I presume that it is avoided because of the conflation with the Republican Party) to mean a supporter of a republic model of government, which stems from his quote: “The republic will rise again.”

      Thanks,

      Marcus.

      • Roj Blake

        Really? Well in that case it seems a rather pointless comment to make as in your use of “republican” doesn’t distinguish Alex Jones from the vast majority of Americans.

        • progression

          maybe the fact that a conspiracy theorist yelling ‘the republic will rise again’ doesn’t distinguishable him from most Americans is a problem?

    • bob

      You listen to the Alex Jones show. Your comment in therefore invalid for being a completely intellectually inept.

      • Roj Blake

        What a compelling argument you make, you must be an intellectual giant to grace this comment section with such reasoned thought.

        • bob

          Well yes compared to somebody who listens to the Alex Jones show and believes it to be gospel. Patronising I know, but sometimes children do need to be patronised.

          • Roj Blake

            Never said anything or anyone is “gospel”. BTW you sound like frothing at the mouth fascist.

            • bob

              You sound like you’re a schizophrenic, and I don’t want your condition to worsen and for you to become more paranoid and hurt by the evil and nasty ‘frothing at the mouth fascist’ on the internet, so I will stop replying to you.

        • laughing at you

          Hahaa, over here in Britain when we watch people like Alex Jones we can’t help ourselves but laugh because he is completely off his rocker. He is a conspiracy theorist and a moron who uses forged evidence, or evidence that has been heavily tainted, if any (and when commenting on British issues, his journalists are often from British tabloids like the Daily Mail which again is laughable). He also likes to shout “its on tape” a lot, and will never actually reveal his “inside sources” which again makes him look like a bit of a bullshitter. You should think for yourself and look at his ‘stories’ and research around them a bit more, rather than take him at face value. If you actually take this guy seriously then you really are a bit of an idiot, sorry to say. If you cant actually tell that he makes up most of the stuff he says on the spot whilst on air, you really need to have some sort of therapy.
          I never actually thought people over in the States actually took him seriously? God, your education system really is fucked up!

          • Roj Blake

            Your ignorance is outstanding. Your post makes no meaningful argument against Jones and you just sound like someone full of hate. PS I was born in the UK and you should stop talking like you speak for everyone in Britain. I’ve never been in the US public eduction system which many Americans would agree is awful, not that I’d praise the British public school system either… you seem like a prime example of its failure.

            For any others reading this who aren’t full of ignorance and hate like “laughing at you” perhaps you should take a listen to voices like Alex Jones and like “laughing at you” suggests research what Alex and his guests talk about and decide for yourselves.

            • Tom

              Mind if I wade in?

              The point he “bob and laughing at you” is making is that there is no meaningful argument against Jones because there isn’t ever a rational point that Jones ever says. It’s not exactly difficult concept to understand. Or are you that brainwashed and intellectually void to understand this?

              Alex Jones is a conspiracy theorist and uses very poor sources – as somebody has already pointed out. If you do actually listen to him and think he has a valid point, then you really are a lost case. For gods sake, his debating style is nothing more than shouting at his opponent and believes that the Illuminati is conspiring to exterminate most of the world’s population and enslave the rest. He once even argued that 50% of the US population will be killed by a bio weapon in 2009 and that 16 year old’s would have to enforce martial law nationwide by 2012. He’s a lunatic.

            • Roj Blake

              I don’t think you or the others spouting off here have seen anything by Alex Jones other than his Piers Morgan Debate and short clips put out by his enemies. I’m not claiming the man is right on everything or that everyone will agree with his political outlook, but the original article here was an ignorant attack piece. In regard to Alex Jones I used to have an opinion of him much like you Tom, but then I happened upon his show and did start actually looking into some of things he was saying and who some of the people he interviewed were, and my opinion changed. Here’s a link to Jones interviewing British personality Russell Brand, there’s no shouting at each other despite coming from very different political starting points. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kO7wUVVuZ80

              But forget Jones for a moment just take a look at what’s going on here in this little uni publication, none of you including the original author of the article are engaging in anything remotely resembling reasoned discussion or intellectual inquiry. It’s just one attack after another on people and ideas you feel hostile towards without any real attempt to understand them. Posters like Bob frame everyone who disagrees with them into some caricature that only exists in their own minds. He just assumes I’m an American born and raised with no higher education, and for some reason he looks down on such a people. While in reality I was born not that far from Manchester, lived all over the world, and among other qualifications have a BA from a Canadian university, in politics and philosophy no less… yes I took classes in formal logic and reasoning.

              In respect to the original topic of guns and gun control. I agree to a point the world would be somewhat safer without the existence of modern weapons including firearms. But the argument of gun control isn’t to eliminate such weapons from our world (which isn’t even practically possible), but rather to control who has the weapons. Specifically gun control aims to empower and arm the state and its agents while disarming and dis-empowering the general public (or more specifically still the non societal elite individual). So what we’re really arguing about isn’t at its core guns or safety for that matter, but power (who has it and who doesn’t) as well as the relationship of the individual to the state.

  • MrApple

    I will never fully understand why the rest of the world, especially the once great Great Britain, seems bound and determined to see the citizens of the USA stripped of the 2nd Amendment. I’m a proud American, firearm owner, and I love my freedom. If you don’t like our Rights and Freedoms then feel free to avoid the US and spend your time and money in one of the many nations of the world that doesn’t trust its people with those pesky freedoms.

    • Bob

      Ahh so the US government trusts you? Is that why they spend billions spying on you? Murica!

      • MrApple

        I NEVER said that I like or trust my Government. I love my country and my freedoms enumerated in the Constitution by the Founding Fathers. And as for spying, the US Government has well been proven to be spying on just about EVERYONE, not just Americans.

        • bob

          I read what I put, you would find that I referred to the US government trusting you, not you liking the government.

          You clearly don’t know your own countries history or the purpose of your own constitution. The constitution is a working document; it’s meant to evolve all the time. Just because something was ‘in the original text’ that doesn’t not make it a coherent argument for it to continue for centuries into the future. Constitutions are supposed to change when the country and the society that dominates it changes in order to protect its people. This is why there is things called ‘amendments’.

          • MrApple

            And since YOU know so much about the Constitution then you fully realize that the Constitution is the supreme law of the land and is never dominated by the society at large. If enough of the “society” decided to do away with freedom of speech, due process, or restrictions on the ever growing Federal Government now would that override the laws that the US has been living under since its birth? And I’m also sure that YOU fully realize that not everyone supports the “living document” fallacy.
            http://tenthamendmentcenter.com/2014/03/05/exposing-the-living-document-lie/

            • bob

              Its not a ‘fallacy’, its a fact. Otherwise there would have been no ‘2nd amendment’ in the first place. The constitution can be amended.

              Truth hurts.

            • MrApple

              What hurts is that fact that people who don’t have those Rights want all of humanity to be in the same stage of servitude as they are. And from your extremely loose connection between the notion of a “living document” and the Amendments of the Constitution it honestly makes me doubt that you truly understand the “living document” idea.

            • Bob

              What? So anyone who disagrees that humans should walk around armed to the teeth is in fact themselves lacking personal freedoms and are in a state of subjection to a oppressive master? That all countries outside the USA are tyrannical hellholes that lack civil liberties and democracy? You are coming across as a bit naïve and confused about the world. You should take a couple of holidays to places within Europe, honestly the Nazi’s are gone and Napoleon is long dead. It’s safe, don’t worry.
              It doesn’t really matter if you do or do not believe in the ‘living document’ idea, in the same way it really doesn’t matter to the wider human population if you believe the earth is flat.

            • MrApple

              If you don’t want to “walk around armed to the teeth” then by all means don’t. It’s called personal choice or at least it is in the US where we have that Right. Europe is safe? Have you been watching the news?
              It also doesn’t matter if it is a “living document” to those that don’t live under its rules/laws/dictates. I won’t shove my Freedoms from my country on you and you are free to keep living as a subject. Win, win.

            • Bob

              Yes I read the news, I also live in Europe. Europe is quite safe – cities like Paris and London are far safer than US cities like Detroit (which has the same
              murder rate as El Salvador, a nation where the armed forces are required to control the streets).

              “I won’t shove my Freedoms from my country on you and you are free to keep living as a subject”

              Pray tell, why exactly does the USA insist on ramming its freedoms down the throats of those in the Middle East? And why do a lot of people seem to die when the USA does shove their freedoms down other peoples throat?

            • MrApple

              Pray tell did you forget where I mentioned that “I NEVER said that I like or trust my Government. I love my country and my freedoms enumerated in the Constitution by the Founding Fathers.” It might shock you to learn that not ALL Americans supported the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. I don’t personally give a shit how other people around the globe live as long as they don’t encroach on my freedoms.

            • bob

              “I don’t personally give a shit how other people around the globe live as long as they don’t encroach on my freedoms”
              I suspect you don’t even know how other people around the globe live anyway.

            • MrApple

              I suspect there is a lot you don’t know about me. Just as I’m sure there is a mountain of stuff I don’t know about you.

  • Ty Tansel

    The second amendment will stand for eternity. Every effort by gun prohibitionists to strip us of our rights has only resulted in organized backlash and fewer gun laws. You don’t like guns? Don’t buy them. You don’t like the Constitution? There are plenty of other countries in the world to live in. Pick one. You won’t be missed.

  • NukeDoc

    “In 2010, 9960 people were murdered with a firearm in the US. In the UK,
    this figure was 39. Murders with firearms account for 60% of all murders
    in the US, while the number of murders in the UK as a whole is 58%
    lower. The land of the free has a huge problem when it comes to violent
    crime.”

    LOL Try again, hoss. UK’s violent crime rate is 4x that of America’s (definitions of a violent crime differ, but no where near enough to make up the difference).

    Sure their murder rate is lower but if you want to attribute that to gun control, I’m gonna burst another one of your bubbles…guns used to be legal for citizens in the UK. Care to take a stab at what the murder rate was back then? Pretty comparable to what it is today. Womp womp.

    http://www.justfacts.com/guncontrol.asp

    • Sam

      “no where near enough to make up the difference”
      Do you have any evidence?
      Also in the UK, when guns were legal, very few people actually owned them. So not really a logical comparison.

    • Charlie

      “definitions of a violent crime differ, but no where near enough to make up the difference.”

      Unfortunately for you, they do. Violent crime statistics in the UK take into account “all ‘crimes against the person,’ including simple assaults, all robberies, and all “sexual offenses’,” (so even a verbal assault can be included) and in the US only includes “murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.”

      That would be why the UK has 4 times more ‘violent crime’ than the US, sorry.

      http://blog.skepticallibertarian.com/2013/01/12/fact-checking-ben-swann-is-the-uk-really-5-times-more-violent-than-the-us/

  • NukeDoc

    Progressive logic: People murdered with guns are worth more valuable than people murdered with anything else.

    These yahoos would hip hip hooray if gun deaths went down by 1000 and knife deaths went up by 2000 despite an extra 1000 people dying.

    It would be funny if it weren’t actually true. Knife deaths aren’t politically valuable when it comes to increasing the government’s monopoly on force by whittling the 2nd Amendment.

  • Abraham Collins

    We are not subjects here in the United States. We are free men and we are able to resist the threat of an overreaching government. You Europeans are unable.

    The consequences are not noteworthy; the ability to resist tyranny is more valuable to us than a false sense of security.

    When Tyranny rears its ugly head once again, as it did in the Third Reich, I can assure you that it will be snuffed out immediately if it attempts to rise in our part of the world. When it comes once again in your part of the world you will be begging for America, its guns and the security each of these bring.

    • bob

      You see, in Britain we might not like the government, but we do not fear it because we aren’t complete morons who will vote in a tyrannical government. We won’t ever need to have an armed revolution, because we are actually civilised and educate our citizens in history, and have a strong democratic system that actually stops extremists from ever gaining power. In the USA, I guess you might need guns because of course a lot of US citizens are ignorant and have the IQ of a spoon, and would probably vote in a government that is tyrannical in nature if it offered them free Big macs and Twinkies.
      I also laughed when you said “we are free men”. You are an actual idiot if you really believe that.

      • Barry Hirsh

        The point is that if your government decided to turn tyrannical, there is NOTHING you could do about it.

        Think about that one for awhile.

        • Bob

          We don’t have proportional representation in the UK, so it is basically impossible for an extremist party to gain power. However, should such a thing happen, then the government would have a popular support due to the way our democratic system is set up, so it would be a populist tyranny.
          If the entire democratic system was overthrown by Fascism/ Communism, then it would be a completely within a completely different social context and of course there would be international support and arming of the democratic rebels by the EU, NATO, UN etc.
          You also forget the power of non-cooperation movements and other forms of non-violent protest (See Ghandi) which we could resort to.
          So yep, thought about it, and you are still wrong.

        • Roj Blake

          Most of these people like bob are blind to tyranny, they expect to see tyrants out of their own cultural and historical circumstances such as 1930s Germans in jackboots and swastikas ranting about jews in twenty-first century UK. The sad truth is arms would be a completely useless defence against tyranny for people like bob because their minds are already completely subjugated. Such people will cheer on the tyrants even as they destroy those very same people’s future.

          • bob

            If arms will be completely useless, then why do the entire civilian population need to be armed?
            The simple truth is the government isn’t going to turn into a Stalinist regime overnight. There would be massive social and cultural upheaval before anything like that happens, so maybe arming of the civilian population might have a legitimate case. But with the current social context we are in, the government are largely on the peoples side and aren’t going to start purging people they don’t like. In the current social context, civilian access to guns are causing more harm than good.
            But of course you are so deep into your cave of ignorance and fear, you probably don’t understand this.

  • DigitalSmoke

    Garbage and biased article. Please refer to the 2nd amendment. I own firearms and you cant have them. deal with it.

  • Adam

    The last big myth about owning enough firepower to rival Pablo Escobar is that it’ll protect you when the government comes. It won’t. A psychopathic Federal Government would have the entire US Army at its disposal, along with enough firepower to destroy the planet several times over. The best anyone making a “last stand” could hope for is to get out alive, instead of re-enacting the finale of the Waco Siege.

    The only reason to have Assault Rifles and other heavy weaponry is for the security of mind—which honestly doesn’t seem worth it.

    Of course, we could just as easily go in the opposite direction. If everyone was armed, no mass shooter would stand a chance, right? Not exactly. Successful interventions by armed civilians has occurred in only 1.6 percent of all mass shootings since 1980. In other words, it happened a single time in thirty years.

    The trouble is, you might be an ace down the range—but when you’re in the middle of utter carnage, it’s another thing altogether. That’s why one of the few possibly successful interventions—at the end of the 2002 Appalachian School of Law shooting—came from an ex-cop. Training makes a hell of a difference.

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/09/mass-shootings-investigation

    • Barry Hirsh

      The entire U.S. Army doesn’t equal 8 million armed civilians, the 10% of the 80 million who would refuse to roll over and disarm.

      And there are two factors you don’t consider: 1) The majority of American soldiers wouldn’t fire on their fellow citizens, and 2) Once the remainder figured out that if they come for us and our families, WE will come for THEIRS, and that includes the monsters that set them upon us.

      • Adam

        If the majority of American soldiers won’t fire on their own countrymen and will always side with US citizens, when then do the civilian populace need to be armed?

      • Baffled

        Are you aware of how insane this sounds? Why is preparing for your government to come to try and kill all of you something which is on many Americans’ minds, when clearly the problem that is actually facing you in the real world is the amount of innocent, needless deaths of children and adults due to the lax guns laws. You’re prepared to sacrifice all those lives just in case a president orders the army to come to you houses and kill all of you?

  • Charlie

    Good article, Joe. How anything with the word ‘amendment’ in it can be seen to be totally set in stone for hundreds of years is beyond me, although I did enjoy the comparison between it and the heliocentric model of the solar system.

    It will take time, but soon, hopefully, gun ownership will go the way of slavery. “Guns don’t kill people. People kill people.” – tell that to the 2-year-old who shot his own mother dead in an Idaho Wal-Mart in December.

    • Barry Hirsh

      “How anything with the word ‘amendment’ in it can be seen to be totally set in stone for hundreds of years is beyond me[.]”

      Really?

      Try this one out, it just may open your eyes:

      “Constitutional rights are enshrined with the scope they were understood to have when the people adopted them, whether or not future legislatures or (yes) even future judges think that scope too broad. . . [I]t has always been widely understood that the Second Amendment, like the First and Fourth Amendments, codified a pre-existing right. The very text of the Second Amendment implicitly recognizes the pre-existence of the right and declares only that it ‘shall not be infringed.’ As we said in United States v. Cruikshank, 92 U. S. 542, 553 (1876), ‘This is not a right granted by the Constitution. Neither is it in any manner dependent upon that instrument for its existence.’ ” – DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA v. HELLER (No. 07-290) 478 F. 3d 370, affirmed.

      Translation: All of that is bad news for folks who hold your illegitimate position.

      • Charlie

        Of course, but using your own legal system to justify the tenets of your legal system seems a bit… illegitimate, no?

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