Without freedom there will be no firearms among the people; without firearms among the people there will not long be freedom. Certainly there are examples of countries where the people remain relatively free after the people have been disarmed, but there are no examples of a totalitarian state being created or existing where the people have personal arms.
Gun control laws don't work. What is worse, they act perversely. While legitimate users of firearms encounter intense regulation, scrutiny and bureaucratic control, illicit markets easily adapt to whatever difficulties a free society throws in their way. Also, efforts to curtail the supply of firearms inflict collateral damage on freedom and privacy interests that have long been considered central to American public life.
Daniel D. Polsby
And, I know the sense of helplessness that people feel. I know the urge to arm yourself because that's what I did. I was trained in firearms. I'd walk to the hospital when my husband was sick. I carried a concealed weapon. I made the determination that if somebody was going to try to take me out, I was going to take them with me.
I think that we should take the tragedy that happened in Newtown and have a full comprehensive dialogue about all issues, whether it has to do with mental health, whether it has to do with the social decline of our young people and some of the things that they are exposed to, whether it has to do with the firearms and guns.
As I have stood in the crosshairs of those who target Second Amendment freedoms, I've realized that firearms are not the only issue. No, it's much, much bigger than that. I've come to understand that a cultural war is raging across our land, in which, with Orwellian fervor, certain acceptable thoughts and speech are mandated.
Nowhere else in the world do the laws on firearms become the playthings of politicians and lobbyists intent on manufacturing cultural conflict. Nowhere else do elected officials turn the matter of taking a gun to church into a searing ideological question. But then, guns are not a religion in most countries.
E. J. Dionne
We need commonsense measures, gun control measures, that save lives. I think that it is important that we keep the firearms out of the hands of the mentally ill and criminals and terrorists. And I also think, by strengthening our background check system and expanding mental health treatment, we can do that as well.
After more than two decades of trying to destroy the firearms rights of more than 80 million law-abiding American gun owners - and statistically failing to show any impact on violent crime - the Brady 'Campaign Against Illegal Guns' is yet another crusade whose ultimate goal is to trample the Second Amendment into dust.
The events of September 11 would have been impossible if there were no airport security system at all. If average Americans were allowed to carry their personal firearms on board our aircraft ..., the chances that several passengers on each flight would have been armed-and thus able to shoot the hijackers, preventing the Trade Center and Pentagon hits-would have been quite substantial.
President Barack Obama cried during his announcement of new executive actions designed to curb gun violence in the United States by restricting the access to firearms of those who present a clear danger to themselves or others and improving access to mental health services for those in need.
To end the crisis [of gun violence], we have to regulate -or, in the case of handguns and assault weapons, completely ban -the product. We are far past the [point] where registration, licensing, safety training, background checks, or waiting periods will have much effect on firearms violence.
The Gun Control Act of 1968 was an attempt to impose order. It set up the Federal Firearms License (FFL) system; gun stores would have to become licensed, and they would have to follow certain rules. Felons, illegal immigrants, and crazy people would be prohibited from buying guns.
Jeanne Marie Laskas
Before the advent of Hitler or Stalin, who took their power from the German and the Russian people, measures were thrust upon the free legislatures of those countries to deprive the people of the possession and use of firearms, so that they could not resist the encroachments of such diabolical and vitriolic state police organizations as the Gestapo, the Ogpu, and the Cheka.
Edwin Arthur Hall
A handgun ban is not realistically enforceable. Confiscating guns would require house-to-house searches and alienate the very individuals whose compliance is essential to the success of any regulation. If gun ownership were prohibited, organized crime would step in to provide the firearms that will continue to be procured with criminal intent.
At Waco, was there really an urgency to get those people out of the compound at that particular time? Was the press going to make it look heroic for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms? At Ruby Ridge, there was one guy in a cabin at the top of the mountain. Was it necessary for federal agents to go up there and shoot a 14-year-old in the back and shoot a woman with a child in her arms? What kind of mentality does that?
I don't care if they're licensed legal firearms, people who are not highly trained putting guns in their hands is a recipe for disaster. So I'll train our officers that there is a concealed carry law, but when somebody turns with a firearm in their hand the officer does not have an obligation to wait to get shot to return fire and we're going to have tragedies as a result of that. I'm telling you right up front.
No matter how one approaches the figures, one is forced to the rather startling conclusion that the use of firearms in crime was very much less when there were no controls of any sort and when anyone, convicted criminal or lunatic, could buy any type of firearm without restriction. Half a century of strict controls on pistols has ended, perversely, with a far greater use of this weapon in crime than ever before.
Very close by the CMS shops, hidden about a quarter mile away in the woods, was the prison's rifle range. Correctional officers could spend quality time with their firearms down there, and the hammering of multiple rounds was typical background noise during our workdays. There was something unsettling about toiling away for a prison while listening to your jailers practice shooting you.
Think of the old cliche about 'the mind being an excellent servant but a terrible master.' This, like many cliches, so lame and unexciting on the surface, actually expresses a great and terrible truth. It is not the least bit coincidental that adults who commit suicide with firearms almost always shoot themselves in the head. And the truth is that most of these suicides are actually dead long before they pull the trigger.
David Foster Wallace
... immediately call on Congress to pass far-reaching industry regulation like the Firearms Safety and Consumer Protection Act ... [which] would give the Treasury Department health and safety authority over the gun industry, and any rational regulator with that authority would ban handguns.
In the larger sense, however, the personal ownership of firearms is only secondarily a matter of defense against the criminal. Note the following from Thomas Jefferson: The strongest reason for the people to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against the tyranny of government. That is why our masters in Washington are so anxious to disarm us. They are not afraid of criminals. They are afraid of a populace which cannot be subdued by tyrants.
[President Clinton] boasts about 186,000 people denied firearms under the Brady Law rules. The Brady Law has been in force for three years. In that time, they have prosecuted seven people and put three of them in prison. You know, the President has entertained more felons than that at fundraising coffees in the White House, for Pete's sake.
Certainly one of the chief guarantees of freedom under any government, no matter how popular and respected, is the right of citizens to keep and bear arms. This is not to say that firearms should not be very carefully used and that definite safety rules of precaution should not be taught and enforced. But the right of citizens to bear arms is just one more guarantee against arbitrary government, and one more safeguard against tyranny which now appears remote in America, but which historically has proved to be always possible.
Hubert H. Humphrey
Can you understand why the Congress, most states and most cities refuse to pass legislation requiring the registration and licensing of any and all guns? For the life of me, I can't. We must register our cars and be licensed to drive. In many places we must get licenses for dogs and even bicycles. Being required to register firearms and show the competence and capacity to handle them hardly seems unreasonable, hardly seems an infringement of freedom. What is it that blocks such legislation? Why do they block it? How are they able to block it?
If liberals can seize our guns because they are dangerous, we have no chance of holding on to our cars and our homes. The total number of accidental fatalities (the majority of which are hunting accidents) of all types of firearms is infinitesimal compared to the number of fatalities from car and home accidents. More children die from playing with cigarette lighters than from playing with loaded guns.
Paul Craig Roberts
Cops and Robbers in 1965 England was still a kind of Ealing comedy: crimes rarely involved firearms. The denizens of F-wing were losers in a game they had been playing against the cops. In queues for exercise, the constant questions were 'What you in for, mate?', followed by 'What you reckon you'll get?' When Freddie and I responded with 'Suspicion of drug possession' and 'We're innocent, we'll get off' they would burst into laughter, offering: 'Listen, mate, they wouldn't have you in here if they had any intention of letting you off. You're living in dreamland, you are.
Gun owners and non-gun owners alike agree on expanding background checks, making gun trafficking a serious crime with stiff penalties, making it illegal for all stalkers and all domestic abusers to buy guns, and expanding mental health resources so the mentally ill find it easier to receive treatment than to buy firearms.
Why tinker with the plain truth that we hurry the darker races to their graves in order to take their land & its riches? Wolves don't sit in their caves, concocting crapulous theories of race to justify devouring a flock of sheep! 'Intellectual courage'? True 'intellectual courage' is to dispense with these fig leaves & admit all peoples are predatory, but White predators, with our deadly duet of disease dust & firearms, are examplars of predacity par excellence, & what of it?
The news today about 'Atomic bombs' is so horrifying one is stunned. The utter folly of these lunatic physicists to consent to do such work for war-purposes: calmly plotting the destruction of the world! Such explosives in men's hands, while their moral and intellectual status is declining, is about as useful as giving out firearms to all inmates of a gaol and then saying that you hope 'this will ensure peace'. But one good thing may arise out of it, I suppose, if the write-ups are not overheated: Japan ought to cave in. Well we're in God's hands. But He does not look kindly on Babel-builders.
J. R. R. Tolkien
As Americans, we have a long history with firearms. We also have a government built on compromise, so here is the compromise I propose: Ban assault rifles and handguns for everyone except police and military personnel. These weapons are made to kill humans and should be strictly limited. At the same time, allow responsible citizens to own rifles and shotguns. Rifles are for hunting big-game animals, shotguns are for hunting birds; non-automatic versions of these weapons should be available for those with an interest in hunting or target shooting.
Today, we will hear from federal law enforcement agencies, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, who will discuss the problem of ELF and ALF and law enforcement's reaction to their dangerous and destructive tactics. It is these tactics, particularly the widespread use of arson, which makes ELF and ALF the #1 domestic terror concern over the likes of white supremacists, militias, and anti-abortion groups.
Assault weapons""just like armor-piercing bullets, machine guns, and plastic firearms""are a new topic. The weapons' menacing looks, coupled with the public's confusion over fully automatic machine guns versus semi-automatic assault weapons""anything that looks like a machine gun is assumed to be a machine gun""can only increase the chance of public support for restrictions on these weapons. In addition, few people can envision a practical use for these weapons.
A system in which legal police shootings of unarmed civilians are a common occurrence is a system that has some serious flaws. In this case, the drawback is a straightforward consequence of America's approach to firearms. A well-armed citizenry required an even-better-armed constabulary. Widespread gun ownership creates a systematic climate of fear on the part of the police. The result is a quantity of police shootings that, regardless of the facts of any particular case, is just staggeringly high. Young black men, in particular, are paying the price for America's gun culture.
1986 A MOTHERFUCKER DOIN TRICKS ON THE MIX AND I DON'T MEAN THE FADER FACE OF ZITS BUT GETTIN GRITS WITH BLACK STEEL FIRESTICKS DRAMA BUILDIN EMPIRE SOMETHIN LIKE DARTH VADER NOW LONZO WAS ARMED WITH NUTTIN BUT A MEAN MUG HE WAS A JITTERBUG THUG, AT THE DANCE, CUTTIN A RUG GREETIN HIS PARTNERS WITH A HUG BREAKDOWN SHAKEDOWN, THIS BROTHER WOULD TAKE A POUND OF SOME SOON TO BE CAKE GROUNDS, AND THEN GO MAKE ROUNDS FIREARMS PROTECTIN WADS OF GORGEOUS GREENS PAPER STACKS OF PAID TAX OFF OF BROKEN DREAMS AT PUBERTY HIS LIBERTY WAS FOUND WITHIN A KEY ROCKS WERE COOKIN BUT HE'S LOOKIN FOR A WAY TO BE FREE HERE'S A KEY BUT LONZO, WHERE'S YOURS? THERE'S NO KEY TO THE DOOR, BUT THERE'S MONEY ON THE FLOOR BEND OVER BUT WATCH OUT, LONZO -- YOU'LL GET FUCKED IN THE ASS
Suicide by train is also popular in many developed countries. Without ready access to firearms, suicidal people often turn to trains. -Der Spiegel, July 27, 2011 Once it happens you can't remember how you started out: innocent, barreling into the tunnel, shooting out at each station like a dolphin out of a dim green pool. Pneumatic doors inhale open, puff shut, lock with a solid thump. Up and down the line, fifty times a day, it's a long slow song. You feel the rumble as much as hear it. In your dim green trance the words retain wonder: Vorsicht, Te¼re werden geschloeŸen. Caution, the doors are closing. Then the first time: someone decides darkness will answer, hides out in the tunnel, steps out in front of the train like he knows where he's going, steps out at you, dying at you, knowing you can't stop in time. Now each time the doors close, they seal you in. You are a human bullet shot into the tunnels, hoping no one will block the light far ahead, each station one minute's reprieve.
I was on one of my world 'walkabouts.' It had taken me once more through Hong Kong, to Japan, Australia, and then Papua New Guinea in the South Pacific [one of the places I grew up]. There I found the picture of 'the Father.' It was a real, gigantic Saltwater Crocodile (whose picture is now featured on page 1 of TEETH). From that moment, 'the Father' began to swim through the murky recesses of my mind. Imagine! I thought, men confronting the world's largest reptile on its own turf! And what if they were stripped of their firearms, so they must face this force of nature with nothing but hand weapons and wits? We know that neither whales nor sharks hunt individual humans for weeks on end. But, Dear Reader, crocodiles do! They are intelligent predators that choose their victims and plot their attacks. So, lost on its river, how would our heroes escape a great hunter of the Father's magnitude? And what if these modern men must also confront the headhunters and cannibals who truly roam New Guinea? What of tribal wars, the coming of Christianity and materialism (the phenomenon known as the 'Cargo Cult'), and the people's introduction to 'civilization' in the form of world war? What of first contact between pristine tribal culture and the outside world? What about tribal clashes on a global scale-the hatred and enmity between America and Japan, from Pearl Harbor, to the only use in history of atomic weapons? And if the world could find peace at last, how about Johnny and Katsu?
Timothy James Dean