Guns yet again (Re: LBO = flame city? (was RE: Survivor!)

Marco Anglesio mpa at
Mon Oct 30 15:35:05 PST 2000

On Sat, 28 Oct 2000, Nathan Newman wrote:
> In an ideal world, maybe it would have been better not to allow hundreds of
> millions of guns to flood our society. But it happened and the reality is
> that in practice, no form of gun control short of serious authoritarian
> door-to-door searches and get them back.

I tend to disagree; guns take themselves out of circulation through wear and tear, use and abuse. If you suddenly stopped selling guns in the US, you wouldn't have any substantial effect on gun ownership next year. Twenty years from now things would be quite different.

That isn't to say that guns somehow degrade: one can store a gun properly and it'll last more or less indefinitely. Most guns aren't in anything like proper storage, though, and will break down over time.

I'm really not sure what effect gun control, as opposed to gun bans, will have on gun ownership rates. It is an unknown course of action, which isn't to say it will be ineffective. Most likely, it will slow impulsive or reactive purchasing of weapons, while having only a trivial effect on gun nuts. (If gun nuts are anything like camera nuts, part of the fun is planning ahead for the next purchase, and getting an acquisition certificate is only a minor hoop to jump through.)

> it seems like the
> anti-gun obsession is just a liberal excuse to avoid looking at the real
> causes of murder, rape and violence in society.

I would tend to say the reverse: extremely liberal gun ownership laws are presented by the right as an anodyne for murder, rape, and violence. Just arm everyone, and everything will be all right. This tends to work well in Robert A. Heinlein's pulp novels; less well in real life. It's a shame that some gun control advocates have merely reversed the argument, but I doubt than more than a few have.


> | The further I get <
> Marco Anglesio | from the things I care about <
> mpa at | The less I care <
> | how much further away I get <
> | --Robert Smith <

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