The Great Gun Debate


Victory? I don’t know where that’s coming from. It looks like you intended to reply to MDB but you managed to reply to me.

I’m not from the US. As Um_bongo said I don’t have a horse in this race. I have my opinions but the US wouldn’t care what I have to say. (if anybody ever does :slight_smile: )


Because I want to get the discussion about more than the gun debate. I have tried to make that clear. What makes you the de facto expert on the suitability of titles. You are trying to narrow the discussion to meet your standards and that’s why there is a problem.

Please leave the title alone. You have all the space you need here to post your disagreement.


That’s a telling point. Not that the laws are effective but that it wasn’t a national problem before or after. We need to look more at what is the causal difference.


I changed the title as @MDB was typing his first post in the thread. Sorry about that, I just wanted to make sure everyone knew what they were getting into :stuck_out_tongue:


Thanks for the clarification. My purpose was to try to move beyond the rhetoric and discuss more substantive issues. To a degree that is happening.

P.S. Been nice if you’d have PM’d that info earlier. We’d have avoided dueling titles. :upside_down_face:


I think the real issue is about more than just guns. I come from a family of gun enthusiasts. I used to shoot a lot in my younger years. My own father was killed in a hunting accident, so I know personally about tragedy involving guns. On the one hand, I am against banning anything. But, on the other, I can see that times, and how our young people view violence, and particularly gun violence has changed. I hate to say it, but there are people out there who just have no business owning a gun. How do we decide who gets to own guns? Is it even possible to make those decisions fairly? And what about police killings of innocent people? I have only questions, no real answers. This is something that isn’t going away, and it needs people who can discuss and decide absent political or monetary influence. It doesn’t need to be about “our side” against “their side” it needs to be about how to solve the problem of violence in our society fairly.


I provide the following information not to be argumentative, but to put a few things in perspective as I see them.

It is commonly estimated that there are about 300 million firarms in the US. That number may actually be as high as 410 to 660 million.

I think we can all agree that without ammunition, a firearm is just a fancy club. An estimated 12 billion rounds of ammunition are manufactured each year. Obviously, not all of that ammo gets used in that year. The best estimate right now is that there are about 60 trillion rounds of ammunition in the US.

If guns really were the problem, there wouldn’t be any debate. Blood would really be running in the streets and there would be dead bodies everywhere. In fact, only a very tiny percentage of firearms are used in crime.

The FBI’s own statistics show that rifles of any type are used in less than 1% of all crimes involving a firearm.

The AR-15 is used in about 3% of those rifle-involved crimes. This means that the AR-15 is used in less than 0.3% of all crimes involving firearms. That is a staggeringly small number, especially considering that there are an estimated 15 million AR-15s in the US.

Calling the AR-15 a “high-powered rifle” is, at best, a misunderstanding. The .223 caliber (or 5.56 mm) round is the same diameter as that little .22 rifle you may have in the back of your closet. It has more powder, so its moving much faster, but it still only makes a .22 inch hole. The bullet may expand, fragment, or tumble. doing more damage, but that is not a sure thing. In many states it is illegal to hunt deer with a .22 caliber rifle, and that includes the AR-15. Why? Because a humane kill is less likely, unless the hunter is a skilled marksman. Most aren’t.

A typical “deer rifle” is .30 caliber and fires a much heavier bullet that travels at similar speed.

Yes, semi-automatic weapons can shoot as fast as you can pull the trigger. Guess what? They’ve been around for over 100 years. The very first military to adopt a semi-automatic battle rifle was the US Army. They adopted the M1 rifle in 1936 and it fires the 30.06 cartridge, probably the most popular deer cartridge in the US.


Thanks for your very insightful post. I learned some stuff there…


I keep hearing guns are not the problem. Is the problem of over 30,000 people a year being killed by guns just something we have to live with then?


From a couple of years ago:

Here is the true impact of the “gun problem”.

There are 312 million people in the US.

According to the CDC, there are roughly 32,000 deaths a year in the US and declining from Gun Violence.

This means you have a 0.00010256410256410300% chance of death by gun.

Let’s break those numbers down:

60% are suicides. That’s 19,200
3% are accidental. That’s 960
4% are justified. That’s 1,280
33% are homicides. That’s 10,560
80% of homicides are gang related. That’s 8,448

That leaves 1,712 in a society of 312 million people.

If you don’t hang out in the hood, are not planning to commit a crime, and if you do not plan on committing suicide, that chance drops to 0.00000548717948717949%


You can play the numbers game with any cause of death. We got way more excited about the 3500 people who died during 911 and the odds of getting killed by a terrorist are pretty small. What I’m hearing from you is that 32,000 people being killed by guns every year is not a problem.


What possible difference does the method of death make? The #1 method of murder in the US is beating. The majority of murders are because someone beat an/or kicked them to death. Do we outlaw hands & feet? Of course not.

Automobile accidents kill far more people than guns do. Do we outlaw automobiles? That would be equally ridiculous.

People who are going to commit suicide will find another way. For them, guns are just a convenience.

One of the biggest problem with banning guns is the much larger number of times firearms are used to save lives. It is estimated that a firearm is used to protect life anywhere from 500,000 to 2.5 million times a year. Most of those times, the gun is never fired. Just presenting it causes the attacker to stop. Its hard to say exactly how often that occurs because people generally feel that since they did not fire the gun, no one was hurt, and their attacker left, there is no need to report it.

Outlawing guns puts each of us at the mercy of anyone who is bigger or stronger. Search the news any day and you can find where one or more 20-something guys broke into an elderly person’s home and beat them. Often, they are killed for no other reason that the intruders thought it was great sport. If the elderly person had a gun and ran them off, that seldom makes the news. If you didn’t hear about it, it didn’t happen - right?


What I’m saying is that banning guns won’t stop any of those deaths, except for those few that die from firearms accidents.


Actually there were 10 “mass shoutings” in Australia in 10 years before the Port Aurthur Massacre in 1996 and none since. I would call that effective. Our country did not outlaw all guns. We made it much harder for people to obtain what are weapons of large scale killing. Farmers and sporting shooters still have access to firearms - just not the ability to kill large numbers of people quickly. The gun buyback was very successful. Read up about it.

Our ABC tv had a great episode of “Planet America” ( where Australians analyze what is going on in the USA ) last week - all about firearms in the US. They looked at all the statistics and most of the deaths from guns in the US are suicides - most are men. Most of the incidents of mass shooting are committed by men (98%). So perhaps more needs to be done to look at what is happening to men and their response to anger or alienation in today’s society.


The problem with attempted suicide by gun is that they are almost always successful. Other methods are less successful and when helped most people are glad to have the chance to live.


I decided years ago that if I ever decide to commit suicide, I’ll do it by running myself to death. That way I’ll have the opportunity to just sit on the curb and think about it. :wink:


So if we don’t care about the cause of death we should just stop doing medical research. You’re going to die from something anyway, so what difference does it make? I won’t say “nobody”, but most people aren’t talking about outlawing guns. They’re talking about regulating them. At least in the US, cars kill a very similar amount of people as do guns, and yes we do regulate cars.

How many lives do guns with 30 to 100 round magazines save?


I have come to respect you for the knowledgeable and helpful information you provide on this forum. On this one issue though, it seems you’re only following your emotions and won’t even entertain the idea that firearms might have any benefit.

You’re wrong about nobody “outlawing” guns. The Assault Weapons Ban of 2018 was just introduced today. Never mind that “assault weapon” is only a term that was made up to demonize some firearms. The bill is written so broadly than virtually all semi-automatic firearms can be included.

How can anyone be arrogant enough to tell someone else how many rounds they are allowed to protect themselves with? That goes far beyond the very definition of hubris.

I can point out 9 cases where AR-15s were used in lawful self defense:

March 2017. 23-year-old Zach Peters woke up to “loud bangs” in his father’s kitchen. When he went to investigate, it was a good thing Peters took his AR-15 with him because in his kitchen were three intruders dressed in all black, one of whom was armed with a knife and another with brass knuckles. In an act that was justifiably ruled as self-defense, Peters opened fire and deprived the world of three more scumbags.

April 2013. A drug addled Jasper Brisbon, 32, forced his way into a Philadelphia couple’s apartment and continued to press his advance despite multiple requests from the armed resident to leave. The resident finally used his legally obtained AR-15-style weapon to fire one shot at Brisbon, hitting him in the torso and eventually killing him.

February 2013. A “gun-slinging couple” who tried to rob what they thought would be an easy mark, a tax preparation service, got “an AR-15 surprise” when an assault-rifle wielding security guard sent them packing with his scary looking gun and a couple of near misses.

January 2017. Two Houston gun store employees successfully fought off five armed would-be robbers with the help of, you guessed it, an AR-15.

May 2014. Homeowner Jonathan Haith used an AR-15 to shoot an armed intruder in his own hallway.

January 2013. A couple of armed criminals who had broken into the apartment of a Rochester Institute of Technology student decided to leave and try a softer target when they confronted the barrel of the student’s AR-15, which was unloaded but “scary looking” enough to do the job with nary a shot fired.

July 2015. Three armed robbers who tried to break into a Milwaukee high-end clothing store by ramming it with a stolen van were met with a surprise of a different sort in the form a hail of bullets from owner Rami Murrar’s AR-15 rifle. Not only was the robbery unsuccessful, but one of the intruders got a few bullet wounds and a prison term for his efforts.

January 2013. When two burglars broke into their home while their parents were gone, a 15-year-old Texas boy used his dad’s AR-15 to defend the life of both himself and his then 12-year-old sister.


TexasBob: While not wanting to step into the quagmire of US gun politics…I can’t help myself from commenting on the argument style. I’ve read this a couple times in this thread and it’s stifling and insulting. It seems that, for you, if someone has an opposing world view from yours that they are coming from a position of emotion.
Can you really say that you’re coming from the cold, hard, unemotional, Spock-like logic and reason place?
Can you fathom the possibility that your opposing viewpoint holders may think of themselves in the same way and of you but coming from their own stand point?

flamesuit officially donned. :slight_smile:


Well @z10user2, my comments may get some of the flamethrowers pointed in my direction.

Laws are not perfect and are subject to change. Many of my Amerifriends are proud of their Amendments. The 2nd Amendment was written 220+ years ago and much has changed since then. The democratic or political process is slow for a reason, it forces those involved to consider the implications of their actions while reducing the tendency for knee jerk reactions.

Recent mass shootings have exacerbated the pendulum of public opinion. Those that firmly believe in the 2nd and the NRA need to ask themselves what needs to be done to counter that effect.

Mental health frequently gets dragged in as a contributory factor. I do not often hear much being said or done about improving the mental health of the American population. What can be done in this area?

Sadly the issue goes beyond that of thugs and robbers, weapons of mass destruction, or whatever you want to call them. It also deals with the sad stories of young children accidentally killing their siblings with weapons that were originally purchased to protect the family unit.

There is no quick and easy answer. To find a solution, many will have to step back, holster their self righteousness and look at all sides of the current situation.