Will this election also be decided by the perverse American fetish for GUNS?

Why are guns so wonderful? So we can protect our families? Shoot at targets or clipped-wing quail when we need sexual release and the wife is tired of giving us blow jobs? Be ready to fight the redcoats, terrorists, Muslims, Jews, Irish, Sikhs, Kenyans and centaurs who would otherwise inundate our homeland? Stand our ground in a movie theater when someone is munching their popcorn too loud? NO!! To listen to some, these goals are secondary. It’s the Constitution, dammit, the Constitution!

I thought of posting the following where it belonged — in the thread “Observations of the 3rd Democratic Debate” — but since it’s longish it might be considered a rant.

Trillions of dollars in new debt.  Income inequality as severe as its been in a century.  The first generations in American history who expect to be poorer than their parents, many already struggling with debt loads that will haunt them till old age.  A trade war likely to plunge the world into recession, a recession the world's central banks are no longer equipped to remedy.

 A healthcare system that is the laughingstock of the developed world. America's longest war, with hundreds of thousands of our soldiers suffering PTSD.  Dictators fomenting aggressions and oppressions throughout the world, often with the support of the U.S.  Allies like France and Germany now regard the present U.S. as a bigger threat than Putin's Russia.

Children caged at the border.  Foreign freshmen bound for Harvard sent back because their Facebook Friend badmouthed Trump.  The U.S. diplomatic corps, U.S. science centers like NASA or DoE, the FBI and intelligence services — all decimated by hateful and 'starve the beast' policies.  The urgent fight against climate change put on hold.  Polluters free to pollute once more.

Yet these issues all pale into insignificance in American politics.  Many swing voters emphasize just one issue, the crucial issue, the issue that separates America from the rest of humanity.  ***GUNS!!***

And why are *Guns* so wonderful?  I guess if an Article of the Constitution required that we walk backwards naked on Main Street every Tuesday, than that would be the quintessentially American value whose repeal would cause permanent damage.

[quote="sps49sd, post:141, topic:840136"]

... If one wants to replace Trump, is it necessary to threaten the Constitution? I prefer buffoon Trump over someone threatening lasting damage to the nation. Trump will pass, in one term or two, and nothing he has done can't be undone.

Climate change?  Not lasting damage!  Children under-nourished or under-educated due to policies that promote poverty?  Not lasting damage!  America's military veterans have a suicide average much higher than the rest of population?  Not lasting damage!  Rising debts now out of control that will eventually trigger devaluations?  Not lasting damage! Firings and exasperated resignations that in less than three years have already decimated the institutional knowledge of U.S. intelligence, diplomatic, and science agencies?  Not lasting damage!

No, the thread in Elections turns to contemplation of what *would* be lasting:  Americans no longer [del][COLOR="Black"]compelled to walk backwards naked on Main Street every Tuesday[/del][/COLOR] entitled to the assault weapons used by mass murderers.

Czarcasm started a thread titled “The inherent problem with 2nd Amendment debates” which makes an important point I’ve tried to make, though it’s an elusive point for some. The Mod first unilaterally changed the thread title to obfuscate Czarcasm’s argument; then closed the thread altogether.

I apologize to Czarcasm and all Dopers for not supporting the thesis of that thread before it was closed. This thread is dedicated to Czarcasm’s thread.

It baffles me as well. It makes no sense at all, unless “guns” symbolize something deeper for many people — something (with variation among individuals) to do with fear and mistrust of perceived urban/cosmopolitan power — education, government, globalized links (with their stench of racial impurity)… (yet, economic structural power is somehow largely exempt).

How a particular object gets imbued with associations is rather mysterious to me, but I’m sure psychologists, sociologists, anthropologists, and others have explored this very human process.

There may be a bit of a parallel in the Irish situation, where it’s convenient to label the tension as a “Protestant” vs. “Catholic” thing, but it’s not really that (subtle theological distinctions are never the issue).

You guys are so off base, clueless, and so full of hyperbole it’s amazing to see. It’s also part of the reason I decided to post here.

Guns are easy to understand. It has nothing to do with race, religion, Nazis or White Supremacy. Nothing about hating others or being paranoid. It’s about above all else having the power and the right to defend yourself and your family with the means you choose and having power over the government.

That’s it. People believe that taking guns is tyranny.

And yes, guns are a major deciding factor in elections. You take hardcore gun grabbing positions, you’re most likely gonna lose. It’s unpopular.

Annoyed — Okay, we get that, and I think that’s a helpful clarification. But I think both our explanations are moving toward the same thing. Fear of something harming me and my family (and, that “something” includes them”government”).

A very human feeling (indeed, many other species feel it, too). Okay.

But the GUN being the physical manifestation of this fear is not inevitable. It could have been something less lethal (locks on doors, say), or something more lethal (bombs, say). Our culture developed to allow locks on doors and guns, but not bombs. Certain other cultures developed to allow locks on doors, but not guns or bombs.

And here I thought that was the First Amendment, ya know “and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” . . . oh and that whole voting thing, I’m sure that’s part of it too!

Do you think an AR platform rifle can stop a tank?

CMC fnord!

If you’ve reached the point where you’re shooting at your own armed forces, you’ve already lost. *Everyone’s *already lost.

Which is why the pro-gun types have fought for open carry in public places.

Well, at least for the first time ever, a major politician (Beto) has called for actual gun-grabbing, as opposed to the things (like background checks or bans on future purchases of particular kinds of guns) that the gun nuts, including those on this very board, have called ‘gun-grabbing’ for many years now.

You’ve used it up, you’ve made the term meaningless. Now that someone’s proposed actual, bona fide gun-grabbing, what’cha gonna call it now, huh? ‘Tyranny’? Nope, already pounded that one into the ground. “Wolf, wolf, wolf!” Yeah, yeah, you cried that already, nobody’s listening anymore. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! :smiley:

How very true Allesan.

But more to my point when in American history did having power over the government actually require being armed?

CMC fnord!

It won’t be decided by guns. Gun nuts always vote and they always vote Republican. That isn’t going to change. If Beto is nominated and runs on taking away AK47s, the gun nuts will vote for the Orange Rapist. Just like they would no matter who the Democrats nominated.

I feel disgust for gun nuts. The one issue that matters to them most, the one hill they want to die on, is to preserve their ability to possess the means to slaughter other humans. They’re pathetic pieces of shit and the blood of those killed in churches and high schools and concerts is on their hands. Fuck every single one of them in the ass with a red hot poker.

To the extent that guns are an issue, the advantage has shifted. For decades, there’s been a lot more people who were pro-regulation than people who were anti. But the intensity was all on the pro-gun side.

That’s not the case anymore - the majority wants these fucking massacres to stop, they want their kids to not have to do regular ‘active shooter’ drills in the schools just because we allow everyone to carry weapons of mass slaughter around with them, effectively allowing everyone to hold everyone else hostage all the time.

Well, FUCK THAT SHIT, is what people are saying. And last year, Democrats weren’t afraid to campaign in favor of gun regulation, and they won in places where Dems don’t usually win anyway.

And now Beto’s moved the Overton window a big step in the right direction by calling for not only an end to selling new assault weapons, but mandatory buybacks of those that are already out there as well. In another year or two, when it’s sunk in a bit, that’s gonna look like common sense to the vast majority of Americans.

Yes, guns are a winning issue - for the left. But I unfortunately have to admit that the right is still winning on this issue in the most fundamental sense: the massacres are still happening.

I woulda gone with the overheated barrel of a AR . . . 'cause irony.

CMC fnord!

Quick question. I haven’t read the Constitution in a while, but the second amendment does say that no less than 30 round magazine, semi-automatic rifles are allowed, right?

I mean it would be a violation of that amendment to say, ban everything but bolt action rifles and revolvers with 6 shots or less, right?

I mean, surely the second amendment doesn’t say we can personally have tanks or missile launchers, does it?

How’s that going for you?

And yet, there is that pesky correlation.

Who is coming for you and your family that you are constantly living in fear of? You and your family is much more likely to be harmed by financial disaster related to catastrophic health issues and environmental impact than some imagined intruder.

What a lying, delusional sack of fucking bullshit. You and your guns against the government and its LOE and military? Quit stroking your AR-15; Wet dream over.

They and you are wrong.

You know what’s becoming less and less popular?.. Fear of social progress and the clinging obsession with religion and guns.

I think septimus’ point is that there’s lots of forms of tyranny that are being conveniently ignored right now. It should be considered tyranny for a government to saddle future generations with insurmountable public debt due to mismanagement. It should be considered tyranny for a government to allow, through gross inaction and negligence, global climate change to threaten the livelihoods and lives of our children. It should be considered tyranny for governments to imprison so much of our population on irresponsible pretexts.

But there’s only one thing voters really get up in arms about, pun intended. It’s easy to understand a government harming its citizens through direct force, of the kind that guns might help prevent. But anything more complicated, like a government harming its citizens by ignoring an obvious threat, seems to be just peachy.

Or the Popeil Pocket Phaser?

Look, I know it’s a dangerous world. If someone wants a gun to protect his home, his family, or his business I’m cool with that. But how many of those situations require a freakin’ AR-15?

And regardless of the legal aspects which will be, as they always are, sorted out by lawyers and judges, it’s more defensible morally to desire limitation on the firepower which can be possessed by the average Joe (or the average Billy Joe Bob) than it is to say: “I don’t care how many kids get killed, you’re not taking my guns.”

My guess is that guns strike the right balance for most people. Guns are active (the user feels they are in control) and mete out immediate punishment, whereas locks are passive and defeating them poses little physical risk. On the “more lethal” side, guns do their dirty work with relative precision, whereas bombs are relatively indiscriminate. Plus bombs tend to make more of a mess. :slight_smile:

Seriously, the very real danger posed to me an my family from a lack of medical insurance is several orders of magnitude larger than the danger posed by the remote possibility of having to fight of an invader into my home, which is in turn several orders of magnitude larger than the danger posed by possibly needing to (and being able to) fight off a tyrannical government.

Clarification, please. Does the word “here” in that sentence refer merely to this thread, or to the SDMB as a whole?


Do you consider it tyrannical for the government to deny you a rocket propelled grenade launcher, should you choose that means of defense? If not, why not? It’s a choice the government is denying you when you are deciding how to protect yourself and your family. And if the government can deny you that choice without descending into tyranny, why does the denial of a rifle become tyrannical? Neither “rifle” or “rocket launcher” are explicitly mentioned in the constitution, yet both are arguably “arms”, which is referenced. So, if there is a distinction, what is it?

For that matter, why can’t i have a fully loaded cruise missile ready to launch from my backyard? A real defense to tyranny would be if I can threaten to blow up any federal building within 100 miles of my home any time I wish. (and put the missile launch on a dead man’s switch)

Bet the government would be really darn respectful if I’m literally holding the lives of a few hundred people hostage every minute of every day.

And if *I’m *not the only one doing it - if all the local wealthy people around me have similar setups - man, we could do almost anything we wanted. Hold people in slavery, even… Rob the government by forcing it to take on a huge national debt so we don’t have to pay the taxes. Set up a healthcare system that benefits us but screws everyone else.