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An Arms Race We Can’t Win - NYTimes.com


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Serving in a combat zone means constant vigilance against unseen enemies. It means wearing heavy body armor, no matter what the weather is doing. It means taking weapons with you when you eat or use the restroom. It means, quite literally, never putting them down. The common argument made by gun-rights advocates is that they “don’t want to be in a one-way firefight,” which argues for not restricting the sale of things like semiautomatic weapons, high-capacity magazines and tear-gas grenades. Their contention is that the only real way to stop dedicated shooters is for there to be plenty of other shooters around.

Those who truly believe that need to be carrying a gun right now, wherever they are. They need to keep it closer than I kept my weapon in Iraq. In Iraq my fellow soldiers’ lives were on the line. Soldiers’ lives are important — but our families’ safety is even more precious.

Those who truly believe that anyone should be able buy semiautomatic weapons will need a gun at soccer practice, at church, at “Batman” movies. That’s the only logical choice. And civilian life will feel almost like being in Iraq.

Excellent points.

What needs to happen for our lawmakers to be willing to bring sanity to the gun laws?

Civilians having semiautomatic weapons, high-capacity machines, and tear gas grenades do not make people safer.

If you want sane firearms laws, you have to respect the other side (for whichever definition of 'other side' applies to you).

People _shouldn't_ run off to buy any ol firearm whenever they feel afraid, however self defense is both an absolute right and a necessary responsibility (the police is NOT obligated to protect you!). SCOTUS has made it clear, in DC vs. Heller, that firearms ownership is a guaranteed individual right, and that right was incorporated upon the states in McDonald v Chicago.

Essentially that argument is now over, and we get to the real question: How do we maintain public safety?

There are two 'outs' constitutionally: The first being the common definition of 'regulated' in the 18th century, which today would be more akin to 'trained' and the second being the Due Process clause of the 14th amendment, which means you can't take away anyone's rights without a judge and jury.

The solution becomes self-apparent: require anyone who wishes to own a firearm to successfully pass a reasonable firearms safety course (I would make it mandatory for all citizens, actually), which does not arbitrarily attempt to restrict firearms ownership, with certifications on specific weapons and regular retesting, and refer failures to special magistrate and jury for additional fitness determination.

I doubt you'll get much complaint from the NRA, because firearms safety training is the vast majority of what they do.

I respect the other side.

I would LOVE if anyone who wants to own a firearm has to get training.

You have to get training to drive a car. Why not guns, too?

Let's make it so!

why not? b/c politics is polarized. Gun grabbers are using mandatory training to create a legal paradox (which, thanks to the Marihuana Tax Act, is constitutional), as in NYC, to require training, but then not hold any training.

Sane laws require sane politics, which is something we do not have from either side right now.

Agreed. There is a level of weaponization that exceeds personal safety and/or the 2nd Amendment. The right to bear arms does not grant jet fighters, artillery, etc. That line is likely movable by the SCOTUS.

Gun safety and gun training (same thing) is a good thing. People should be able to know how to clear a weapon they find, fire one if necessary, and realize what it means to be pulling the trigger.

There is a debate that revolves around an individual's arms right and fear of government and crimes/others versus public safety that needs to be conducted for 21st century America. Shouldn't the Army always have better weapons than its citizens? Is there certain weapons that we can all agree are only made to kill people versus hunting/self-defense (Automatic handguns?)?

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