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Sticks & Stones May Break My Bones, But Guns Can Always Kill Me: Rhetoric & Violence in Tucson January 11, 2011

Posted by legalethicsemporium in Criminal law, Gun Control, Law, Ethics & Society, U.S. Constitution.
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There is little to be said that has not already been said about the tragic shooting in Tucson that killed 6 and wounded many others including Representative Gabrielle Giffords.  The media and internet is inundated with analysis attempting to explain/blame the impact of the vitriolic, hyperbolic political rhetoric that has become the mainstay of many politicians, bloggers, and media coverage.

However, regardless of the sociological debate about the ability of words to incite violence in an already unbalanced human being, one simple, bare fact remains true.  If it weren’t so easy to purchase a semi-automatic pistol that holds 30 rounds of ammunition then maybe 20 people would not have been shot instantaneously.

As Robert Dallek writes, “Only one thing seems certain in trying to understand the gap between rhetoric and action in our national discussions about violence in America: the ease with which perpetrators can acquire the means to commit mass murder. However often we lament the horrors committed by deranged killers, we seem incapable of reining in the capacity of the murders’ ability to acquire the handguns, automatic weapons, and rifles they use to create such mayhem.”

In fact, the New York Times reports that, “Arizona’s gun laws stand out as among the most permissive in the country. Last year, Arizona became only the third state that does not require a permit to carry a concealed weapon. The state also enacted another measure that allowed workers to take their guns to work, even if their workplaces banned firearms, as long as they kept them in their locked vehicles. In 2009, a law went into effect allowing people with concealed-weapons permits to take their guns into restaurants and bars…

In the last two weeks, two bills were introduced relating to the right to carry guns on college campuses, one allowing professors to carry concealed weapons and one allowing anybody who can legally carry a gun to do so.”

Query: Even if the Founding Fathers envisioned that the Second Amendment would ultimately permit citizens to own hand guns for use beyond the needs of forming a state militia–which is the subject of vehement debate in our country–does any private citizen really need a concealed weapon that holds a 30 round magazine?

 

Bang Bang II— Want a Gun? Go West…No Just Look West July 6, 2010

Posted by legalethicsemporium in Law, Ethics & Society.
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An earlier Bang Bang post  reflected upon the Supreme Court’s recent decision that requires state and local governments to recognize an individual’s  2nd Amendment ‘s right to bear arms.   Bang Bang II is posted to  note the fact that anyone wanting  to carry a concealed firearm may be able to get licensed by the state of Utah without so much as ever learning how to shoot the deadly weapon.

That’s right, apparently 32 states recognize a gun license if it is issued by Utah and Utah will accommodate you in your  state—The proverbial “go west young man” is made unnecessary by a gun safety class that is  available for $62.25 in your own state  and does not require any shooting practice.  (To read the entire article from today’s New York Times just click here.)

 ‘Just kind of leaves you wondering… If the Founding Fathers could have imagined the state of Utah, what would they think?

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