The Gun Debate Reloads

handgun.jpeg(Blogger’s note: To read earlier analysis and stories on the gun debate, click here. Please feel free to take the poll to the right of this page as well.)

There are those who believe more guns equal more crime. And those who believe more guns equal less crime. Both sides are armed with statistics and rhetoric they’ll readily share.

I’ve said this before. But now, the gun debate —thanks to some horrifying incidents around the country, Mexico’s drug war, a recession, a Democrat in office and an increase in the number of concealed pistol licenses — has again emerged front and center.

Last year, the conversation revolved around school shootings in the wake of tragedies at Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois University. This year, it has spread to all aspects of American life.

Our area has also seen such tragedy with guns. Remember in 2005 when a shooter opened fire on a crowd at the Tacoma Mall?

Lest we forget, in 2008, there were, in total, about 258,000 people in the state who can choose to carry a hidden lethal weapon on their person, according to the Department of Licensing.

Rather than ask the ageold question about gun control (take the poll on the right for that), I’ll ask this: in the wake of new developments in the gun debate, has your view changed?

30 thoughts on “The Gun Debate Reloads

  1. We are told that military grade weapons are somehow making it from US sporting goods stores down into Mexico- contributing to the failed drug war.

    At the same time we are told that most of the world prefers to pay millions in ransom to pirates who seize ships in international waters. Maybe that cash is promoting illegal sales of military grade weapons.

  2. If weapons are outlawed and people must surrender their gun/s…does anyone really believe criminal type folks will surrender their guns?
    The law abiding folks will…

    Sharon O’Hara

  3. I support the second ammendment just as I support all the other ammendments.

    Like Sharon said, only law abiding citizens would follow gun laws.

    And to follow-up on the comment Alex made. If we took control of our southern border then the flow of everything, humans, guns, drugs, going both ways would be reduced. However, no one on either side of the political aisle wants to take charge and make it happen.

  4. There would be a lot of newly created felons in America as many “law abiding” Americans would say “BITE ME”.

  5. Foreign policy-

    Will we ever expect Mexico to phase in standards, or is it just about what Mexico wants from us?


    Military grade weapons are not available in US sporting goods stores…

  6. Lest we forget- none of those 258,000 law abiding citizens with legal concealed carry were involved in any Seattle drive by or gang shootings. So do we stamp out gangs or citizens–in Seattle its citizens, which way does it ride where you live ?

  7. Both sides may have statistics, but statistics taken out of context are meaningless. The anti-gun argument is, unfortunately, a primarily emotional one. “Think of the children”, etc. I do think of the children, and it’s just one of the many reasons I choose to do what I can to protect both myself and those who cannot protect themselves.

  8. I have carried legally for twenty plus years. In that twenty years I have never had to pull my weapon from its holster. I did have one incedent about eleven years ago in tacoma. A thug tried to mug me with a knife, I opened my jacket so he could see my gun and holster and then I put my hand on the grip. He took off running. So don’t tell me a gun will not deter crime.

  9. It’s all based on getting America in line with a one world government and giving up our Constitution in favor of a united nations constitution. A constitution that denies the freedoms we have as Americans. Check it out, don’t just believe me. See for yourself by reading the new world order information readily available on many web sites. A one world economy controlled by the same banks that have brought about this economic collapse we now face. We need America, and America needs us …… stand by her now or give it all away
    and become another third world sate.

  10. I dont see how anybody in their right mind could possibly think that banning guns is going to reduce gun related crimes. Its just like drugs, they’re illeagle but who still does them? The criminals.

  11. I see great comments, from Americans. I currently have six guns in my house. My kids and grandkids were properly raised. Is there a problem? The only problem I see is the naive,liberal,stupid politians that equate the policy of less guns equal less crime…..oh, please, Mr. drug dealer and Mr. psycho, turn in your guns….oh, All you law-bidding citizens, too!!!!!! Dah?????????

  12. Unfortunately our United Nations ambassador is currently working on a treaty that will seriously curtail our 2nd ammendment rights and they believe the UN treaty trumps the constitution. The current administration will probably agree stating we just need to get along.

  13. Turn in our guns? You have to be kidding. We might as well tell the crimnals to come on in and take what you want. The anti gun liberals as usual don’t have a clue.

  14. What we need to do is enforce the laws that we already have. Statistics show that Right to Carry States, those that issue permits without mountains of red tape, have plummeting crime rates. The number of permits issued in each local jurisdiction has a direct affect on crime. The higher the number, the lower the crime rate. States that have enacted both Right to Carry and Castle Doctrine laws are watching crime fall through the floor. The Castle Doctrine allows you to use lethal force to defend yourself when confronted by someone attempting to do you harm wherever you may lawfully be, at home or in public, without fear of prosecution or civil action. It makes criminals much more polite and unwilling to pursue their endeavors when they know it is very possible that they may lose their life in the course of their actions. The FBI even confirms that since Right to Carry laws have been enacted, violent crime rates are at an all time low. The courts have continually upheld that the Police have no obligation to provide protection to the individual. Yet in many states, the government wishes to dispose of the individuals right to protection as well even being so bold as to suggest that we offer no resistance and give the criminal what they want and they will simply go away. As though it were part of the curriculum and a requirement to receive a crime license that the criminal agrees not to harm you as long as you comply. Criminals have no respect for the rule of law. That is what makes them criminals. Oakland is a perfect example. Convicted felon (can’t possess a firearm) on parole (can’t possess a firearm) shoots and kills four police officers. In case no one has noticed, criminals don’t care what the law is. Again, that is why they are criminals. As for Mexico, we can’t be serious. How is it that the possibly most corrupt government in the world blames us for their violence, people who target and behead American Citizens, and we as a nation actually give it any kind of consideration? Of course firearms from the US are being used. It’s because the US Government sold them to Mexico, lawfully, and now those guns are being used in violent crime. Now it’s our fault? Ridiculous at best. Mass shootings are a tragedy. But they are committed by people who are illegally in possession of those firearms in the first place (Columbine) or by those with mental disorders whether long term or short and those who target victims in Gun Free Zones or areas where they know the likelihood of anyone but them having a firearm is unlikely. Gun Free Zones should be called Free Killing Zones. To disarm the people would be the demise of our country as we know it. The Second Amendment is what ensures that all of the other amendments stay in place. It is what ultimately guarantees that we may worship as we wish, for me to post this opinion, to ensure that African Americans or any other person of color is destined to the back of the bus. It guarantees that we are protected against unreasonable search and seizure and that states retain their own power independant of the Federal Government. In 2001, the Dalai Lama, Nobel Peace Prize and all, said “But if someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.” So says the Dalai Lama. US Circuit Court Justice Alex Kozinski said it best, “Tyranny thrives best where the government need not fear an armed people.”

  15. TYPO: Toward the bottom of my opinion where it speaks about guaranteeing our rights under the Constitution it should read “to ensure that African Americans or any other person of color is NOT destined to the back of the bus.” My apologies if anyone was offended. I hope that you understood my true intention of that statement.

  16. When I was a kid about 7-8 years old my older brother and I went up the street to a friend’s house. His folks both worked so it was just the three of us kids there. The friend got out his dads gun, one that he brought home from the war.

    The neighbor kid said the gun was empty plus the safety was on. I was in a little hallway about 15 feet from the neighbor kid when the UNLOADED GUN WITH THE SAFETY ON when off. The bullet missed me by about 4-5 feet.

    I have lived another 65 years thanks to the neighbor kid not being a very good shot. I have never had a gun and have done very well without one all these years.

    I’m not sure what the outcome might be today with these guns that can fire dozens of rounds with the pull of the trigger.

    I haven’t a clue as to why anyone needs an AK47 type gun. I say ban them.


  17. In all of the tragic events that occured from gun violence, was there ever a law enforcement officer standing by ready to prevent the crime from happening? What of the people who’s homes are broken into and then they are assaulted? Is it a law abiding citizen committing the crimes, or the ones like myself who have a legal concealed carry permit? It has been proven time and again, that the laws which are already in place or any number of new laws will not protect the public from a criminal who possibly has a felony and is not supposed to carry a weapon, but does so anyway. No matter how many laws are passed, criminals will still be able to get weapons, and the only ones who will be defenseless are the people who chose to follow the law, as they will be the ones without a means to protect themselves if the liberals continue to try and remove our 2nd amendment rights. Look at Mexico, they are not allowed to carry guns, but all the drug people manage to get them as well as all manner of illegal weapons. I
    would rather be ready to protect my family should the need arise, than to wish that a police officer was available at the exact time and place that I may need them.

  18. My father gave me my first gun when I was 8 years old. He taught me about safe handling,how to shoot. He taught me common sense. Guns are tools, used correctly they are safe used incorrectly the results are deadly. A father murders his 5 kids with a gun. Had he used gas to burn the house down would we ban gas? The vast majority of gun owners will never use a gun to kill.Unfortunately gun owners are compared to criminals, and mentally ill people who choose killing instead of getting help.Banning guns will not stop the killing.

  19. Has it changed my views — no; just strengthened them
    2nd Amendment freedoms makes all the others possible.

    As far as those “statistics” go about guns coming from the US to Mexico; it’s crap. Most of the automatic weapons being used are coming in from South of Mexico’s borders (Central & South America). Serial Number checks have shown many of them are from lots sold to Panama, Costa Rico, and Guatemala during the 80’s & 90’s. The politicos made thousands selling them to drug smugglers. And given the corruption of many police & military people in Mexico, they may want to run a check on their own armories before blaming us.

  20. I wonder out of all the deaths buy guns in a year how many are done in defense buy the gun owner.

    As you read some of these post you would think people are definding themselves every day or two.


  21. Mickh – Thousands of lives are saved every year by those who legally carry firearms. I suggest you go the NRA’s website and begin reading the Armed Citizen reports. These are stories that you won’t see in mainstream media because it goes against their liberal agenda of helping our government further it’s cause in disarming the populace. I personally would rather have my firearm and never need it, than need it and not have it. Our society has become more violent in the sense that despite declining crime rates, the crimes that are committed are off the charts with the violence used to perpetrate them. A recent home invasion in our county left an 11 year veteran of our Sheriff’s Office saying it was the most chaotic and brutal scene he’s ever been on. In the area I live in in Bremerton, 3 home invasions within 12 blocks of my home have occured in the last few months. One resulted in an infant being kidnapped, another resulting in a woman being severely beaten and robbed over a period of time until she was able to escape. And as I said in my post earlier, the Second Amendment is what keeps all of our other amendments liquid and viable. It is what allows you and I to disagree in an open forum such as this. Without the Second Amendment all of the other amendments become null and void at the will of the government. It’s a much bigger picture than the narrow band you seem to be viewing this issue on. I would also suggest that you look up Jews for the Preservation of Firearms and check out the genocide chart they have compiled. Governments who have disarmed the people have killed millions of their own citizens in the 20th Century alone. Our freedom was bought and paid for at the end of a gun. Our freedoms will remain because we have guns. I worked in a field for several years that allowed me to see the very worst that we as human beings are capable of doing to one another. I have had more than one suspect try to disarm me, the last one leaving me with a permanent, partial disability and flushed my career down the toilet. Violent crime can happen anywhere, anytime, for any reason or no reason at all. Police Officers become victims of violent crime every day. And they are the last ones we would ever think of being victims of crime. But I’m here to tell you that it happens. And if a person is bold enough to take on someone who is trained, armed and obviously a figure of authority, what makes you think they wont try you? Gun Control is an issue about protecting our rights. A right unexercised is a right lost. If the Second Amendment is whittled away I want you to think of which Amendment means the most to you and then think of how you would feel when the government whittles it away. Without the second Amendment they won’t even waste time whittling, it will just be gone.

    Respectfully my friend and thanks for your comments.

  22. Steven J. Stewart,
    You’ll forgive me if I don’t use the NRA as my source of all the good, bad and ugly that is the result of gun ownership in America, although I’m sure that they publish the bad and ugly too. . . right?

    Who wants’ to get rid of the second amendment? I don’t. Explain why I need an AK47 in my house. Will I come home one day and see my neighbor park his tank in his front yard?

    Without the Second Amendment all of the other amendments become null and void at the will of the government. I don’t get that. My having a gun is stopping the government from sending an F-16 to get my gun.

    Violent crime can happen anywhere, anytime, for any reason or no reason at all. Police Officers become victims of violent crime every day. And they are the last ones we would ever think of being victims of crime. But I’m here to tell you that it happens.

    Yes I know, wasn’t it just a week or two ago that a guy killed 3-4 cops in Pennsylvania. One report I heard was he was afraid that Obama was going to take his guns away. Gee wonder where I’ve heard that one? Also didn’t he use an AK47 in that shooting?

    Besides killing someone what good is an AK47?

    I think its way too easy to get a gun and I don’t see the need or value of these AK47 type guns or these guns that have been modified to shoot hundreds of rounds with one pull of the trigger.

    In my perfect world you would have your second amendment but no modified or AK47 type weapons. You would need to go through a licensing process to buy ANY gun each time you want to buy one. Gun locks can’t hurt.

    Warm regards, Mickh

  23. Mickh – Greetings friend, I was happy to see your response.

    We would all love to have our perfect world and each of us have our own ideas as to what that would be. As for the NRA, each group has it’s own spin on the agenda they are trying to push or defend. Which is why I never rely soley on one source. I take things with a grain of salt and form my own opinion based on the information I have obtained.

    I simply recommend that if you are looking for examples of people who’s lives are saved because of a gun, they have examples which are taken from local newspapers all over the country. My point was that you will not see those stories on the evening news or CNN or MSNBC. It is a double edged sword on occassion as sometimes it is necessary to take a life in order to save one.

    If you don’t want an AK 47 in your house then that is your choice and one that I respect. I’m asking you to respect my decision to have one in mine. And I will not argue the fact that an AK 47 has no sporting value for something such as hunting. They were in fact made with one thing in mind and one thing only as were most military style weapons.

    But I own one simply because it is my right to do so, the gun is capable of semi-auto fire only and I cannot fire hundreds of rounds with one pull of the trigger. Those guns are illegal and restricted to the military. I really have no desire to own a fully automatic firearm as ammo costs make it a bit prohibitive.

    My AK 47 is not an assault rifle by definition as it is semi-auto. The media has turned the term “Assault Rifle” into a buzz word that does not accurately describe the types of rifles we are allowed to own. The only selective fire I have is to engage or disengage the safety. And just for info, the bullet fired from a 30-30 Lever Action Rifle is more powerful than that of an AK 47. And the round that is used in the AK 47 is used in a number of high end, well made hunting rifles right here in the US. For those of us who appreciate the mechanics and workmanship that go into firearms, the AK 47 is like a Honda when it comes to dependability and looks like a Yugo. It is inexpensive to shoot, it is fun to shoot and requires virtually no maintenance. I will not apologize for owning one.

    And if your neighbor comes home with a tank and parks it in his yard, please let me know as I would like to see it.

    As for the Second Amendment stopping the Government from making the other rights null and void, the Second Amendment creates a balance of power between the people and the government. A very important balance.
    Let’s suppose that there is a group of 10 people in a room. One has a gun, the rest don’t. Who has the power to impose their will? The guy with the gun. Let’s pretend he is the government. The other 9 people have no choice but to do as they are told. Lets say that now three of the people(citizens)in the room now have guns. Where is the balance of power now? Those three people can now tell the one that they will no longer tolerate being subjegated and despite repeated requests, he has not listened so now he has the choice to either comply to the will of the people, remember, a government of the people, by the people, for the people, or they will exercise the right to alter or abolish his government (declaration of independence I beleive).

    That is an extreme example. We choose to be governed. And despite the number of guns and gun owners in our country who outnumber the military and police by 30 to 1, I haven’t heard of any plans for an armed takeover of the government.

    As for being too easy in obtaining guns, it’s not really all that easy. There are loopholes in places, but for the most part those loopholes have been self policed. I personally will not buy nor sell a firearm with a private party. I use an FFL holder. I fill out the required paperwork and submit to an instant check every time I buy a firearm. I maintain a current Concealed Pistol Permit which I have to renew every few years etc. My very first statement in my very first post was that we need to enforce the laws we have. I believe that. Unfortuantely it doesn’t happen. Our politicians create warm and fuzzy feel good gun laws that are redundant to ones that already exist to make us all think that something is being done to stop this or that because this or that happens. It’s a dog and pony show.
    Lets remember that many guns used in crimes are stolen from people who legally owned them to begin with. One crime led to another. That is how criminals operate.

    As for the police officers that have been killed in the last few weeks on both sides of the country, my injuries could certainly never diminish the suffering that they and their families have felt. You can not justify that type of horror and carnage. Unfortunatley it is the type of gun that was used in the commission of these crimes instead of the actions of the perpetrators. But that is par for the course. Please rest assured that the firearms I own will never be used for a violent rampage, only to possibly stop those who may go on one.

    Thank you for this meaningful discussion and it was a pleasure.
    Take care and God Bless.

  24. Oh yeah, and as for the F 16, they can’t send it to get your guns if no one is able to fly, fix it or fuel it. A fairly morbid thought not appropriate for this discussion. Thankfully we have measures in place to prevent our own military from being unleashed on us. And I’m sure that 99% would not take up arms against the citizens of our great country. But now we’re getting into semantics. I love our country, I love our troops and all I want is to see us remain as the greatest nation in the world.

  25. Citizens are under no obligation to explain a “need” to own a firearm any more than they must explain a need to go water-skiing, rebuild and old car and take it to the racetrack on weekends, or attend services at their chosen place of worship once a week, or more often, or never at all.

    For many people, a firearm is like the spare tire in the car, a first aid kit, or a fire extinguisher- hope you never need to use them.

    All of this does not change as we cross through a checkerboard pattern of jurisdictions and boundaries here in our home state and find ourselves on National Parks lands- where the federal government says your concealed carry permit is void- welcome home troops.

    This is a use vs. abuse issue. Peaceable, responsible adult choices should be left to individuals to make.

  26. People should have the right to protect themselves. It is almost primal to be able to have a weapon even if we evolved past stick and clubs, a weapon is another from of that stick or club.

    I do not think we should be shooting them in the street, but we should not have our hands tied behind our backs either.

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