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   Undertoad  Tuesday Nov 13 02:25 PM

11/13: Destroying Pakistani firearms



Pakistani authorities in Lahore use a bulldozer on Oct. 27 to destroy illegal firearms, some of which were handed in during a recent amnesty and others that were recovered during police searches. Security has been beefed up throughout the country, following violent demonstrations by Taliban supporters who condemn Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf for his backing of U.S. military action in Afghanistan.

Musharraf was on Meet The Press last weekend, looking very impressive. For those who want to abide by the idea that we should not go after bin Laden without proof he's responsible for 9/11, Musharraf said that he's seen the proof, and he's the guy who would have been shown it - in order to get his OK to use his country's land as a launching pad.

Although this guy is a military dictator, he seems like he knows what he's doing, has his act together, etc. Although you never know.



warch  Tuesday Nov 13 03:04 PM

What a striking image. I'd like to see the "after" shot of flat guns though.

Quote:
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf
He is bold. I guess a prerequisite to the gig of Military Dictatorship. He suggests a ceasefire for Ramadan (sp?), making a compelling arguement for demonstrating respect for Islam. He is articulate and has been a key US bedfellow, but undoubtedly an opportunist. Time will tell.

If you can find images of clean shaven Kabulites digging up their TVs and VCRs I'd like to see that! Or better yet, an unescorted, uncovered woman grooving to some music, dancing in the street. Ah freedom.


dave  Tuesday Nov 13 03:58 PM

MAN!

I was gonna post this one too. Pretty cool how often you and I think images are worthy of IotD. Hehe. But I guess that's why I stuck around here - 'cause of all the cool IotD's.

On a side note, Musharraf has definitely got his shit together. Of course he's looking for help from the US, but he definitely has reason to. And we have reason to look for his help. It's definitely a relationship of convenience right now, but it might turn into much more. Never know.



dave  Tuesday Nov 13 04:03 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by warch
If you can find images of clean shaven Kabulites digging up their TVs and VCRs I'd like to see that! Or better yet, an unescorted, uncovered woman grooving to some music, dancing in the street. Ah freedom.
Here you go. I don't know if they're grooving to some music, but there's definitely an uncovered woman or two here...




warch  Tuesday Nov 13 05:58 PM

Quote:
I don't know if they're grooving to some music, but there's definitely
an uncovered woman or two here...
Thanks, nice to see smiles. Even in the face of such a long haul full of retaliatory acts, guerilla war and anarchy. I read one news account of a man digging up his VCR and TV and popping in a dusty cassette of Titanic- HUH? I mean... Titanic? Hey, its your choice right! maybe its the water imagery...

On second look, is that a woman? are there women in the crowd? It may be a boy in the front left.


Undertoad  Tuesday Nov 13 09:34 PM

I saw news video of people playing music in the streets and men getting their beards shaved. The people were in a state of TOTAL JOY.

But it would not surprise me if the womenfolk still felk a little uncertain about the new glasnost, and didn't come out right away.



spongman  Wednesday Nov 14 06:28 AM

Here's a nice picture drawn by an 8-year old Afghan child.





From the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan's web page. (be warned: it's pretty disturbing stuff)

It's no wonder they're happy now.



warch  Wednesday Nov 14 10:52 AM

RAWA has my utmost respect and admiration for their heroic defense of human rights. This image drawn by a lucky little girl with brave parents risking all to get her schooling - to say nothing of emotional help. Amazing.



russotto  Wednesday Nov 14 12:05 PM

The Northern Alliance...

...may be better than the Taliban (ain't saying much), but they are still Muslims and they still believe in Islamic law. I wouldn't be surprised to see women STILL required to cover up (though perhaps not with that thing that even covers their eyes) once they've solidified their hold on power.



dave  Wednesday Nov 14 12:09 PM

true dat, russotto. i been thinking about that. and i think what would probably be best would be a mini-US. like they gots over there in japan. freedoms, of course - not destroying culture. but i don't know that it can be done without destroying some culture. i dunno. it's tough to say. the thing is, do we even have the right to help them out? where does one draw the line? i dunno. surely we don't want to get into "nation building", but where does "helping them out" stop and "nation building" begin?



warch  Wednesday Nov 14 09:52 PM

I'll vote for basic human rights over traditional cultural practice any day.



Undertoad  Wednesday Nov 14 11:00 PM

The tricky part comes in when there is a dispute over what is a basic human right. Somewhere in my big ole cookie file there is a quote from a mayor, who says that cable is a basic human right in his town, because there is bad reception in certain areas.

Cable TV, Okay. But I should hope it's only basic cable he's talking about - no HBO. You gotta draw the line somewhere.



jaguar  Wednesday Nov 14 11:58 PM

Quote:
I'll vote for basic human rights over traditional cultural practice any day.
That's one thing that's always bene the palce i've drawn the line, where religion (or culture) comes before or impinges on basic human rights, dignity or quality of life. example: Catholic church forcing the stopping of the morning after pill being given out in french PUBLIC high schools because of what they beleive. France has one of the highest teenage birth rates. ....On a related issue a reasonably group of us at school (public) are fighting the singing of a hymn at speach night at the moment...


Quote:
The tricky part comes in when there is a dispute over what is a basic human right.
AH - good old arguement this one - is there such a thing as absolute rights. Yes - inside any structure (such as human society) there is, or should be so i believe. Universal decleration of human rights is usually considered a good starting point. THat mayor sounds like a very stupid person - reminds me of the DC(?) one i heard quoted "the brave men who died in vietnam, more than 100% of which were black..."


Griff  Thursday Nov 15 07:54 AM

The sad part is I'd bet on a bigger protests for excessive cable fees than we'd ever see for these unaccountable courts they are setting up.



Whit  Thursday Nov 15 06:38 PM

What constitutes a basic human right?

To me, and I expect most of you, the right to wear what you want seems like an easy answer. However it's easy to go to far with that. I work with a guy that finds most of Brittney Spears outfits offensive. I certainly don't, but I might find it disturbing if someones great-grandma or a guy was wearing the exact same thing.

My point is that everyone has a different interpretation. More, I don't think anyone is right. This is all opinion. What is a basic human right is no more determinable than what the best color is.

This being said coming from a democratic republic (the US) I tend towards the majority rules idea. Point is, none of us has a right to say what they should become. It's up to them. Yes, I realize they are woefully ill equiped to do much of anything too. We can offer advice and aid but that's really as far as I think our rights go.



warch  Thursday Nov 15 07:10 PM

You can read the UN's Declaration of Human rights at www.un.org/Overview/rights.html
Although many dismiss the views the UN as just, again, the US- they have been wrestling with the question for over 50 years,crafting articles seeking a universal definition.

Article 3: Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.

As Griff points out, the newly sanctioned US military courts need to be addressed here too- it all goes fuzzy and out of focus in the name of war.



Undertoad  Thursday Nov 15 07:54 PM

Read it, and as a [bonehead] small-l libertarian I would have to say that the US itself doesn't adhere to all that stuff. And we have no excuse; we came up with a lot of those ideas. A declaration based on natural rights that starts by declaring all equal before the law... seems mighty familiar.

The problem with declarations upon high is that societies will pretty much do what they want to do anyway. The pressure for people to behave according to their society, as opposed to their laws, is tremendous. This would be doubly true in cases where the law comes from some distant authority. At its best, the law is a set of guidelines and a gentle nudging. The best enforcement is the neighbor, the family member, the civic association and the church. If none of those believe in the declaration on high, the society will not change.



warch  Thursday Nov 15 10:03 PM

Quote:
I would have to say that the US itself doesn't adhere to all that stuff.
Very true. Declarations articulate values that sometimes can lead to laws which sometimes can lead to action and maybe eventually societal change. Eventually. Unfortunately this works equally for good and evil.

It is still being played out in the long messy wake of legalized slavery in the US.


jaguar  Thursday Nov 15 11:48 PM

Wel that is the problem: Who si going to enforce these measures. THe UN? Is powerless in msot places, and ot my knowlegde has never waded in anywhere*purely* to stop an international law being broeken becuase in the end, they are not binding.
Until you have some kind of *real* world goverment international sutff liek this is pretty pointless, Australia is as bad.



CharlieG  Friday Nov 16 11:01 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by Whit
snip...This being said coming from a democratic republic (the US) ...snip
Democratic Republic is an oxymoron - What the US is a Constutional Republic, but we know what you meant

Charlie


Griff  Friday Nov 16 12:51 PM

past tense Charlie



CharlieG  Friday Nov 16 03:23 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by Griff
past tense Charlie
More and more every day.

Democracy: 3 wolves and 2 sheep voting on what to have for dinner
Republic: 3 wolves and 2 sheep voting on WHO to have for dinner
Constitutional Republic: The wolves finding out the sheep are armed


MaggieL  Friday Nov 16 04:11 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by Whit
What constitutes a basic human right?

My point is that everyone has a different interpretation. More, I don't think anyone is right. This is all opinion. What is a basic human right is no more determinable than what the best color is.
Well, we have a few old documents down in Washington that make a stab at it, which I vastly prefer to the relativism above.

And here's a point of view that brings this thread full-circle too: http://www.a-human-right.com/





jaguar  Friday Nov 16 09:26 PM

.......................................................................................................................................................................................O, so if everyone carrys a gun we're safe?
Either that or you're gonna spend allota time doging ricochetes every time someone gets tapped on the should while in a bad mood.



elSicomoro  Friday Nov 16 10:00 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
.......................................................................................................................................................................................O, so if everyone carrys a gun we're safe?
Either that or you're gonna spend allota time doging ricochetes every time someone gets tapped on the should while in a bad mood.
Easy there, jag. I'm a big fan of gun laws, but even I wouldn't take it that far. Although, that pic is pure fear factor material.


Scopulus Argentarius  Friday Nov 16 10:36 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by CharlieG


Democratic Republic is an oxymoron - What the US is a Constutional Republic, but we know what you meant

Charlie
Democratic Republican IS an oxymoron. There are alot of moderates that are ox-morons too.. not that that's a bad thing.


(hehe)


jaguar  Friday Nov 16 10:47 PM

I'm ell aware of the emotional manipulation element of the pic - its the message =)

I spent a month in cambodia, *everyone* has a gun, mostly assult rifle type things, net result: Allot of people, animals etc got shot. I psoe its a bit liek MAd theory - if everyone is equally armed noone is going to shoot for fear of being shot. Guns aren't nukes tho. Ordinary carrying Beretta 92Fs in underarm holsters ain't gonna do much good, even in somehting like a bank robbery the msot liekly net result is that they are mosre likely to get shot unless they've done cop training or the like.

And how anyone can defend o jsutify ordinary people being able to purchase chainguns, heavy assult rifles etc is well beyond me..
*odd image of farmer in chopper taking out predatory with 30mm chaingun*



MaggieL  Saturday Nov 17 12:32 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
Ordinary carrying Beretta 92Fs in underarm holsters ain't gonna do much good, even in somehting like a bank robbery the msot liekly net result is that they are mosre likely to get shot unless they've done cop training or the like.
The message isn't "everybody carries and we're safe". It's "some of us carry and we're safer". Along with "If nobody but the cops can carry legally, only the bad guys will, and they'll know their victims are all disarmed". The cops can't be everywhere.

I'm licenced, I carry, and I train better than most cops. Licenced gun owners are a very law-abiding bunch...more so than the general population, in fact. They don't walk down the street potshotting at things--that's a really fine way to lose your licence.

I don't think your Cambodian experience is really relevant, even if "a lot of people animals etc got shot". Theres's a lot of other wierd shit going on in Cambodia.

Speaking of rights: PA constitution Article 1 Section 21: "The right of Citizens to bear arms in defense of themselves and the State shall not be questioned."


Whit  Saturday Nov 17 12:36 AM

I just read the UN rights list. Now I'm no lawyer but off-hand I'd descibe that text as loop-hole filled. Alot of indefinates. Oh well, I guess I should claim that backs up my point... Oddly, I'm starting to wonder if maybe I honestly believe in the "live and let die" approach. Sounds harsh but maybe deep down inside I'm a hard core Darwinist.

Blast, I just got an email saying there's another post on this thread. Better read it before getting into the gun part...



juju2112  Saturday Nov 17 01:31 AM

ya know, I guess this is off-topic, but I can't turn that e-mail feature off! I try turning it off in my preferences and hitting 'save prefs', but the resulting page never loads. Any ideas, undertoad?



Whit  Saturday Nov 17 01:33 AM

Okie-doke. First off I forgot to thank Warch for the UN link. It was very thought-provoking.

On the gun issue, first off my stance: I'm a martial artist this more or less demands the belief one should stand up for one's self. If you need a firearm to do this then get a license Once you've done that, more power to you. I believe that our constitutional right to own a gun should be upheld. Even so, I don't own one. Nor do I expect to anytime soon. Why? Let me give three quick stories for consideration.

I'm actually training a guy with a concealed handgun license. He figures that he has to have enough time to draw the gun, and most attackers don't intend to make themselves known untill the attack itself begins. This means the would-be victim has to make the time, so he trains to fight as well.

I lived in Dallas for a while, while there a co-worker that was an ex-con told me that a trend had begun in the bad area's of town. It seems that when a car-thief saw a vehicle he knew he could sell for parts (ever heard of a chop-shop) the thief would step up to the car and shoot the driver, without speaking or calling any attention before the shot was fired. This was done just in case the driver had a gun.

I heard this story about a rape recently from someone who knew the victim personaly. She was a Tae-Kwan-Do black belt (fourth or fifth dan, I don't remember which) and was well versed in self defense techniques. She was unlocking her car door in an parking garage and didn't see the guy. Her head was driven directly into the door frame of her car before she was aware of him. This left her barely awake with a major concussion. She was then pushed directly through her own cars driver side window. This all happened in maybe a couple of seconds. The initial attack effectively immobilized her and no one in that condition could have done anything (she couldn't raise her arm, much less draw a weapon) at that point. Then the real attack began... I know an instructor that works with victim's of violent crimes often and he says stories like this one are far too common.

My point? Don't think a gun will make you safe. It just means the other guy will come at you that much harder.



elSicomoro  Saturday Nov 17 01:40 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by MaggieL
Speaking of rights: PA constitution Article 1 Section 21: "The right of Citizens to bear arms in defense of themselves and the State shall not be questioned."
Out of curiosity, how long ago was that written? If that were, for whatever reason, to be challenged, I wonder if the interpretation would be word-for-word, or the "spirit of the law."

I would read that as follows: You have the right to protect yourself, but restrictions can be applied to that right.


Undertoad  Saturday Nov 17 10:22 AM

Juju, I've made the change for you, let's see if it "takes" this time. The option in question is "Use email notification by default".



jaguar  Saturday Nov 17 06:42 PM

Wierd shit? Not really, most areas in ities are as bad as bad areas of american cities, same diff.

Whit did a betterpoint of illistrating the point - it jsut raises the stakes. Carrying/owning of and semi/auto weapons here is illegal, so noone can legally carry round a firearm, heck even carrying knifes is illegal. I know as a fact that there are *very*few illegal weapons in melbourne and thsoe thatare held are held bepeople who are not stupid enough to use them willy-nilly, in other words they are pros, the kindof people who you'dahve to piss off before you'd find lead in your neck. Net result - low number of shootings.

I'm sure when that was written they wern't capable of carrying a weapon with a clip of 15 at a +5ps rate of fire. Heck you could carrying something like an MP5K PD under you're jacket without it being visible.



MaggieL  Saturday Nov 17 10:04 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by Whit


My point? Don't think a gun will make you safe. It just means the other guy will come at you that much harder.
Not safe. But measurably safer. The "other guy" may come at you harder, or choose another victim, or simply run away. Concealed carry keeps the uncertainty in your favor.

As your stories point out, there are some attacks aganst which there is no defense. And martial arts training is a good--but not perfect--protection too, be it tai kwon do or aikido (in which I have some training) or whatever else floats your boat. All good martial arts training teaches an awareness of your environment, and carrying a firearm is not an excuse to not pay attention to whats going on around you. Quite the opposite.

But that a defense is not 100% effective is not an argument against using it--otherwise you might as well leave your keys in your car, since any car can be broken into and hotwired.

As for poor Jag, who I didn't realize was in Austrailia, my sympathies. Not only do your lawmakers have no respect for freedom of speech down there (judging by the internet laws they keep passing) but my understanding is that in the first year after your gun bans went into effect there was a 44% increase in armed robberies and the steady decrease in armed-robbery-with-firearms that occurred during the previous 25 years turned around and became an increase.

Not exactly a success story.

Being prepared to defend yourself doesn't "raise the stakes"--the stakes are exactly the same: your life. It may, however, raise the risk for your attacker, and that's the idea.


jaguar  Saturday Nov 17 11:19 PM

Quote:
As for poor Jag, who I didn't realize was in Austrailia, my sympathies. Not only do your lawmakers have no respect for freedom of speech down there (judging by the internet laws they keep passing) but my understanding is that in the first year after your gun bans went into effect there was a 44% increase in armed robberies and the steady decrease in armed-robbery-with-firearms that occurred during the previous 25 years turned around and became an increase.
Ironic for an american to talk to me about his or her nations respect of freedom.

Firstly: the NRL made a campaiign beased on these laws that aparantly australian homeownder were now cowering infear becuase they couldn't wield thier NVGM16s and more - that pissed off alottapeopel down here because it was BULLSHIT.

The laws affected only RIFLES - semi auto and auto rifles at that, how this would have an effect on the number of crooks with firearms is well beyond me. It has been illegal to carry a conceled firearm or own semi-auto pistols or heavy rifles for a long time so that is irrelavent in relation to armed robberies. I'm curious where thsoe stats came from, state or federal?

As a general rule, crooks dislike using deadly force, after all that carrys murder one/death - its a high risk, you're not ogin to use willnilly. Where i lived in briton i regualry saw people carrying pistols, it was gang territory but use them? Only in dire emergencies, the cost was too high. Same applies here, if someon hets shot here with a glock or something similar is goes federal immidietly, its a really serious thing and a big effort will be made to track it down. As a result shootings are very, very rare, every one will make the bloody news.

If 50% of the population are carrying a 9mm pistol, crooks are more likely to be carrying, and using.


Whit  Saturday Nov 17 11:55 PM

I'd like to say that I do agree with the idea that guns add a measure to one's self defense capability. I simply don't think most of the people that carry guns fully recognize the limitations. They definately are an effective threat.

I've done some minor training (mostly target shooting and such) as part of my martial art training and have been amazed at the accuracy of a quality handgun. A friend of mine and I went out with a few of his, particulary this nice little Glock made model, no I don't remember the specifics. Having only fired a handgun once before I could hit a 1 gallon paint can at just under fifty yards the majority of the time. That's some spooky offensive capability.

I would like to point out that in the second story the ante was only uped because the criminals expected people to have guns. For that matter I expect that since most rape's are commited by someone that knows the victim that the attacker probably approached that way because he knew of her training. Same thing different situation. This does not mean that I'm against the use of guns by well trained indivduals or that martial arts don't work. It simply means that the danger a person faces may be greater because of the defenses. If I was to anger someone that knows me they are far more likely to use a gun on me than a person with no training. Just as a shoot first policy is far more likely in gun rich enviroment.

Oh yeah, hey Jag if it makes you feel any better I know a alot of Americans that are pissed about all the 'Anti-terroist laws'. Hopefully enough of us will make it clear that this neo-Macarthyism crap won't fly to make a difference.

To all US citicens, please write your reps, make it clear they've lost your vote if this keeps up. Even if it's an idle threat tell them they better change or they're out. Please! It needs to be done.



warch  Sunday Nov 18 12:20 AM

So it starts at home. Stand down. I dont own a gun.

I have been attacked. And afterwards I thought about it and decided. If in that situation again, I will think, react, resist, do my best, survive if I'm meant to. I'm no Rambo, no Annie Oaklie. I know that I'm not suited to that particular power. I continue to look for my strength and comfort elsewhere. Thats just me. Perhaps hard for some to understand, but I sleep better at night.

(Watch, I'll survive gun-play at McDonalds just to be hit by a bus, c'est la guerre.)



Chewbaccus  Sunday Nov 18 01:09 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by MaggieL
Speaking of rights: PA constitution Article 1 Section 21: "The right of Citizens to bear arms in defense of themselves and the State shall not be questioned."
I find this law to be null and void as PA is a commonwealth, not a State.

Technicalitingly.

~Mike


MaggieL  Sunday Nov 18 02:20 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar

If 50% of the population are carrying a 9mm pistol, crooks are more likely to be carrying, and using.
That's an unsupported assertion. Criminals will always carry, and for a convicted criminal to carry isn't legal--even here-- for whatever good the law does. Point being that they don't care if it's legal or not.

If a bad guy is determined to kill me for my purse or after a rape, it won't matter much to me whether he does it with a baseball bat, a knife, or a Glock. But if *I'm* carrying, I have superior force available in the first two cases, and equal force in the third. Naturally, I'm at a disadvantage in that he has the attacker's initiative until I understand his violent intent. But the odds in my favor are much, much better. And if he should suspect that I may be armed, he's less likely to attack. In a society that has disarmed me, he *knows* I'm disarmed unless he's had the misfortune to decide to bust on another crook. That's how the 9/11 hijackers knew they could take control of four jumbo jets with no more than *boxcutters*, and their victims are just as dead as they would have been if the weapons had been Uzis.

The argument that I should disarm in the hopes that the crooks will is silly, because they won't. Prohibition of guns works no better than prohibition of drugs, or of alcohol.

Say, Chewbaccus--if PA isn't a state, does that mean I don't have to pay income tax to the Feds? :-) People in Massachusetts, Virginia and Kentucky will be delighted too..


Chewbaccus  Sunday Nov 18 04:44 PM

It stands to reason. But in government, what's that worth?

~Mike



jaguar  Tuesday Nov 20 08:01 PM

MAggie, my arguement was about availability.......ITs not easy to get a hot handgun here, in fact its very, very hard and would cost you alot of money ($20k for a beretta rounghly) meaning less are around than if they were availiable in every gun store on a 30day purchasing time.



MaggieL  Wednesday Nov 21 12:10 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
MAggie, my arguement was about availability.......ITs not easy to get a hot handgun here, in fact its very, very hard and would cost you alot of money ($20k for a beretta rounghly) meaning less are around than if they were availiable in every gun store on a 30day purchasing time.
Well, Beretta's *are* overpriced. But not *that* much!
.
Sorry, but I simply don't beleive that price. Where did you get it? Surely *you* haven't shopped for an illicit handgun, have you? And if you have, you definatly should shop somewhere else.

If someone can really get $20,000 for a single 9mm handgun, you must have a *serious* gun smuggling problem. down there.

People with violent intent will be violent. Gun prohibition will not make them less violent. If the price you cite *is* accurate, then I'm guessing you have a lucrative black market in guns every bit as evil and violent as the drug black market.

We don't have a 30-day wait here, I can walk into a gun store and walk out with a brand new or used whatever I want...from a Beretta 9mm to a semiauto M-16, SKS or AK-47, if I'm so inclined. That's becuase I have a fireamrs licence and when they call to check my background they will see that I haven't been convicted of any criminality since the licence was issued.

And I haven't shot up the neighborhood even once yet.


jaguar  Wednesday Nov 21 01:07 AM

Yes but you or someone like you COULD, and has extremely access to the firearms to do it.

That figure...is entirely accurate, i'm not going into where it comes from at all but it is an actual quote, as i've stated before, firearms offenses are taken very seriosuly here when high power/illegal arms are involved, its insurance money as much as anyhting else because if you go down wiht an illegal weapon and it gets traced back bad things happen - to you and them.

There is a market here, its handeled by a number of differnet...intersts mostly drug-affiliated because they already have the mechanisms to get things into the country, often by silent dumps along the top coast, so much terriroty that to watch every 50-person high speed speedboat who drops off a couple of crates and goes back is completley impossible. *I* have not, i know who have - its not bullshit.

For record that was a beretta Cougar L and 200ish rounds.



dave  Wednesday Nov 21 06:37 AM

uh...

hey, i got a water pistol... 1/4 as functional as a beretta, 1/20th the price!

just $1,000!

add a Super Bass-O-Matic '76 for only $500 more! mmm, now that's some good bass!



CharlieG  Wednesday Nov 21 07:53 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
...snip...($20k for a beretta rounghly) ...snip...
Damm,
For that price I should go into business!

Let's see, a nice HAAS Minimill ($39k), a nice CNC lathe (say 20k), a surface grinder (3-4k), a heat treat oven, and a few other things - call it $100k. I open a small machine shop doing general work (as the cover), and every so often run off a pistol on the side. I'd make a better living than most machinists. For that matter, stat an import/export business that moves cargo containers of ANYTHING. All you need to do is break even on the business, and put ONE gun in every 10th container:


Think about it - drug dealers (at least in this country) regularly smuggle in drugs by the TON (just look at the busts) - how hard do you really think it would be to slip a pistol (never mind anything else) into the load. Hell, we're worried about the fact we can't stop people from smuggling in a nuke


dave  Wednesday Nov 21 08:34 AM

yes, but this is australia. understand that they're more likely to catch someone importing a gun because they're so much better than us at everything they do



MaggieL  Wednesday Nov 21 02:05 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
Yes but you or someone like you COULD, and has extremely access to the firearms to do it.
I'm sure you (or someone *like* you) COULD do all sorts of incredibly evil things too. Do you have access to a baseball bat?

The fact is that licenced firearms owners in the US are a very law-abiding group, more so than the general population.
Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar

That figure...is entirely accurate, i'm not going into where it comes from at all but it is an actual quote...
Sorry. I find your unattributed "actual quote" totally unconvincing. Perhaps you heard about someone making an offer at that price. Maybe you even know somebody stupid enough to pay that much for one small caliber autoloader and enough ammo for a day at the range--just enough to *start* breaking it in.

But if you're telling me that's the going black-market price for such a thing, you've strained my credulity to the breaking point, and managed to convince me you're totally blowing smoke. As CharlieG points out, the guns need not even be imported. A well-known CNC-manufactured 9mm autoloader is sold profitably here in the US for $US 225.


node  Friday Nov 23 11:03 PM

Well, I have comments for both sides of the argument here. First, 20,000 dollars is a ridiculous price for a pistol. You'd pay half that for an Arctic Warfare Super Magnum Sniper Rifle for instance, and those things have an effective range of over a mile. It'd have to be one impressive pistol to match that.

On the other hand, the argument that gun owners are a responsible bunch is too broad a statement for me to accept until I see figures for the number of lives saved by a gun in America stacked up against those lawlessly taken by a gun.

On the other hand:

"I'm sure you (or someone *like* you) COULD do all sorts of incredibly evil things too. Do you have access to a baseball bat?"

So why don't gun owners keep baseball bats instead? And no, I don't consider that (my afore mentioned point, not yours) as stupid as it initially seems.



jaguar  Friday Nov 23 11:54 PM

I'm sure you (or someone *like* you) COULD do all sorts of incredibly evil things too. Do you have access to a baseball bat?

The fact is that licenced firearms owners in the US are a very law-abiding group, more so than the general population.

I'm sure you realise you can do allot more damage very quickly with an AK47 in a shopping mall than a baseball bat.

As for going rates i'm screwed for this because i'm not exactly about to start giving out names and phne numbers so you can check am i, although 20k is the highest i've heard. 4ish the lowest. It depends allot on what it is and where it comes from.

Quote:
yes, but this is australia. understand that they're more likely to catch someone importing a gun because they're so much better than us at everything they do
I'm not going ot rise to your stupid bait but there are 3 ways of getting somehting into this country, and they apply to most.
a: dump it somewhere along the coast, someone else picks it up. There is buggar all along our top coast its not hard.
b: Bribe someone to let it in, harder by far but not impossible.
c: sneak it in, with a gun this is very hard, and risky.

CharlieG would need to be a damn fine machineist to make a high quality relaible semi-automatic pistol and ammunition that was capable of being mistaken for the real thing.


Quote:
just enough to *start* breaking it in.
*sigh* its nto baout actually killing anyone iwth it, and if you did it owuld be at clsoe range, its about bullshit and posing, you packin a gun - you serious.

As for in relaiton to drugs i still haven't seemed to hammer home th epoint that if you are caught, or even the wiff of such a thing being aorund its taken VERY seriously, i'm talking full on, police go rabit over stuff like that. Drugs are common, auto pistols are not.


russotto  Saturday Nov 24 06:18 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
I'm not going ot rise to your stupid bait but there are 3 ways of getting somehting into this country, and they apply to most.
a: dump it somewhere along the coast, someone else picks it up. There is buggar all along our top coast its not hard.
b: Bribe someone to let it in, harder by far but not impossible.
c: sneak it in, with a gun this is very hard, and risky.


Really? So you never get container-loads of metal parts?

Quote:

CharlieG would need to be a damn fine machineist to make a high quality relaible semi-automatic pistol and ammunition that was capable of being mistaken for the real thing.
If the Afghanis can do it with hand tools (and they can), a competent machinist can do it with modern technology. Remember, he doesn't have to design the thing, just build it.


jaguar  Sunday Nov 25 12:42 AM

YOur average customs XRAY eqipment is quite capable of seeing the gun hape, or at least ammunition.

Quote:
If the Afghanis can do it with hand tools (and they can), a competent machinist can do it with modern technology. Remember, he doesn't have to design the thing, just build it.
Ill just wander down the sheet and but a beretta engineering guide shall i?
Its stil far from easy

this all seems to have clouded the issue that more guns equal more shots fired equals more poeple dieing though.


MaggieL  Sunday Nov 25 07:39 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by node
So why don't gun owners keep baseball bats instead? .
Because bad guys won't limit themselves to basball bats. Also,. I'd rather go up agianst a bad guy with a gun while packing myself than do the same situation with a baseball bat per each. I don't have to get as close, and it's not a battle of strength.

I'm done with this thread...jag clearly knows little about what he's saying, and hasn't really thought very much about it beyond what he's been told in school, other than to hope the evil guns go away.

People who live in places where the law-abiding people have been disarmed--be it AU or New Joisey--invent some amazing rationalizations about why it's better that way, and sour grapes can go a long way to resolve congitive dissonance. But simplistic reasoning like "if there are few guns then fewer crimes will be comitted with them" ignore all kinds of messy complicated details that go along with living in a real world filled with real people. More shots fired does *not* equal more people dieing, because that "reasoning" glosses over *who* is shooting and why. I've shot 200 rounds in the last ten days, and nobody died as a result.


jaguar  Monday Nov 26 12:20 AM

Quote:
jag clearly knows little about what he's saying, and hasn't really thought very much about it beyond what he's been told in school, other than to hope the evil guns go away.
oh get over it. The simple statement i made which you seem to be determined to muddy to obscurity is that a heavily armed society will result is more deaths than a relatively lightly armed one. Its like saying that no more people will die in a nuclear war than a conventional one - heavier weaponary generally does result in more deaths....That is the purpose of it after all.

Since you want to talk down to me....
Quote:
More shots fired does *not* equal more people dieing, because that "reasoning" glosses over *who* is shooting and why.
Actaully - i don't see why thats relavent, apart fomr target shots etc the more shots fired at people statisticly is going to result in more deaths... Irrispective of whether those peopel are "goodies" or "baddies" more people will die. That tends to be the result of esclations in weaponary, we're much better at killing people than we were 500 years ago because OHMYGOD we have better weaponary.

While it is very hard to remove high powered weaponary from a society as soaked with it as the US to argue that if everyone is equally heavily armed noone will get hurt really is a bit silly...

Not sink to being patronising or anything.


MaggieL  Monday Nov 26 01:32 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
oh get over it. The simple statement i made which you seem to be determined to muddy to obscurity is that a heavily armed society will result is more deaths than a relatively lightly armed one.
Just because you *state* something you think is obvious dosen't make it *true*, and challenging you to back it up with reason isn't "muddying" it, except to the extent that it forces you to focus on how muddy it was to begin with.

I'm sorry, I just looked at your profile for the first time. I was about to pose an analogy from the Cold War to invite you to focus on the difference between "being armed" and "being violent", a distinction that sadly escapes many adults these days. But I had no idea how young you are; I've been trying to engage you as if you had much more life experience than you do, and it's just been falling over.

I'm also sorry if you feel talked-down-to, but the level of this conversation was beginning to feel as if it belonged in high school. Now I know why. It may be, as Clinton said, that it's good for young people to be angry. However, it's also good if they're a little selective in what they're angry *about*.

Let me offer you another quote: "Things should be made as simple as possible. But no simpler." --Albert Einstein.


CharlieG  Monday Nov 26 08:01 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
<snip>
CharlieG would need to be a damn fine machineist to make a high quality relaible semi-automatic pistol and ammunition that was capable of being mistaken for the real thing.

<snip>
Nah, not damn good - Remember, here in the US, a LOT of machinists made one for fun, sort of a right of passage. There are a LOT of gunsmiths who will make you one (It is legal).

With modern CNC machines, the problem is figuring out how to make the FIRST one, then writing the code.

That said, If I was going to make an illegal firearm, it'd be a Sten gun. THEY are trivial to make - like they were made in the Warsaw Ghetto during the uprising

You have to remember that the British lost more than men at Dunkirk - they lost almost every rifle in the country. Shepherd and Turpin designed a submachine gun that could be made VERY quickly, in almost any machine shop - one of the design goals was a cost of less than 5 pounds - they succeeded - it cost 2.5 pounds. Ammo is the hardest part - in particular, the primers


dave  Monday Nov 26 10:30 AM

This is really simple to solve.

Jag - back it up.

Simple as that.

Get some facts and back up your assertions. Or try and reason them out better.

Remember: criminals will *always* have guns. Period. Do you want your police chasing after them with butterknives?



russotto  Monday Nov 26 01:18 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar
YOur average customs XRAY eqipment is quite capable of seeing the gun hape, or at least ammunition.
Quote:

this all seems to have clouded the issue that more guns equal more shots fired equals more poeple dieing though.
Because your "equal"s aren't. I once shot a whole case of ammo through a 9mm submachine gun, and no one was even injured. So more shots fired does not equal more people injured.


Whit  Monday Nov 26 05:19 PM

Quote:
With modern CNC machines, the problem is figuring out how to make the FIRST one, then writing the code.
Actually, it's even easier than that. A good CAD program will do most of the work for you. A friend of mine custom makes paintball guns. The design is obviously different but discussions of how easy it would be to make a real one is pretty common at his shop.


CharlieG  Monday Nov 26 05:31 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by Whit


Actually, it's even easier than that. A good CAD program will do most of the work for you. A friend of mine custom makes paintball guns. The design is obviously different but discussions of how easy it would be to make a real one is pretty common at his shop.
Actually, having a CAD/CAM system and CNC doesn't do ALL the work for you - you still have to figure out the order of operations yourself, as well as how to fixture the job. I'm NOT a professional machinist, BUT I do have some professional training as a machinist, and have a small machine shop in my basement (aka, I have too much respect for REAL machinists to call myself one)

It's amazing what you can do today


Griff  Monday Nov 26 05:36 PM

Whit just eliminated your primer problem.



Whit  Monday Nov 26 05:39 PM

&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Sorry, I didn't mean to down play what's done. It's not an easy job. But my friend is a machinist and he recently went off on an hour long speech about what their new CAM/CAD can do and how much easier his job is.



jaguar  Tuesday Nov 27 03:35 AM

First of all, dham either post somehting useful or shut the fuck up, the whining "yea - do as shes says "is just...belh

Quote:
Remember: criminals will *always* have guns. Period. Do you want your police chasing after them with butterknives?
I don't at any point remember advocating disarming police... But to the actualy point, you're as per usual looking black and white, think grey. Sure there will always be guns, its a matter of how many and how easily they are accessed.

MaggieL:
I had a vague plan of working from the bottom up. That required people to state an opinion on the basic fact that more advanced weaponary availiable to a large cross-seciton of society results in more deaths. If its used that is, and statisticly the more poeple with guns will result in more people being shot. i mean if they don't have them, they cna't shoot with them. Ill try and pull up some stats from the US then from Britan or another non-arms to public country later...

Would you agree iwth that vague statement?

Cold war? Consider how many times we came within inches of nuclear war, and more keep coing out of the woodowrk - i wouldn't define it as a safe/nice way to live. When your put the equivilent capability (in relaitve terms we'll say an Ak-47) in the hands of 270million people the chances of it being used are just the tiniest bit higher.

Controlled example: Lock 100 random people in a house, ,bigbrother style, give them all a wide range of high power weaponary, see if anyone, and how many, get shot. See how many of them die as a result.

Put another goup of random people in a house wihtout any weaponary and see how many people die. People will always want to hurt each other, its a matter of how badly they can do it.

Question: Why do you choose to carry an concealed firearm? Safty i assume? WHy don't you feel safe? Because the bad guys have weapons? Becuase there is not enough cops ot keep the streets safe?

Quote:
Because your "equal"s aren't. I once shot a whole case of ammo through a 9mm submachine gun, and no one was even injured. So more shots fired does not equal more people injured.
Assume shots fired at people - i'm not that silly geeez.


CharlieG  Tuesday Nov 27 07:55 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar

snip ...Controlled example: Lock 100 random people in a house, ,bigbrother style, give them all a wide range of high power weaponary, see if anyone, and how many, get shot. See how many of them die as a result.

Put another goup of random people in a house wihtout any weaponary and see how many people die. People will always want to hurt each other, its a matter of how badly they can do it.

...snip
Now, let's lock a group of 100 people, NONE of whom have guns in a house, with a group of another 20 or so people - thoses 20 DO have guns, and make the rules. They rely on taking part of what every one of the 120 people for themselves in order to eat. How long will that stay stable? How long before those 20 rule everything? Now take SOME of the 100 people, and give them guns - the 20 people don't KNOW which of the 100 have guns. How differently will thoses 20 people act?

Those 20 people will act a bit different, huh? They are called the government

I guess that's the difference between being a citizen and a subject

Democracy is 3 wolves and 2 sheep voting on what to have for dinner
A Republic is 3 wolves and 2 sheep voting on who to have for dinner
A Constitutional Republic is the wolves finding out the sheep are armed

And about your sig - Bill Clinton was, and still is an ass


dave  Tuesday Nov 27 07:57 AM

Here's something useful for ya, jaggie.

I don't feel safe because people with malicious intent generally have the advantage. They are planning an attack - you are not planning on being attacked. However, if you increase your firepower, you are more likely to find yourself in a winning position. Your odds of survival are greater.

That is why many law-abiding citizens of this country feel it necessary to have firearms and, yes, carry them.

More police won't solve the problem. Un-arming the criminals is a laughable notion and if you were actually proposing that as a solution (I'm not sure that you were - I'm just saying, *if* you were), then you're missing a bigger picture that a couple of people have been trying to point out. Criminals will always have weapons - they don't care what the law is. If they did, they wouldn't be criminals.

The fact of the matter is this: If all the persons aboard the flights that hit the WTC and the Pentagon had been armed (yes, EVEN the terrorists), the likelihood of them continuing on to their targets is pretty fucking slim. I challenge you to argue it the other way around.



CharlieG  Tuesday Nov 27 09:04 AM

"I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do."
--- Prof



dave  Tuesday Nov 27 10:16 AM

ChuckyG brings up another good point: The people of the United States are given the right to replace their government if necessary. If the government were to ever become so corrupt that it needed to be ousted, we probably couldn't do it with sticks and stones. We need weapons to keep the government in check.



Griff  Tuesday Nov 27 10:17 AM

Actually, I meant that with high velocity air rifles the builders job should be even easier.

I don't know if anyone else has taken note of this but with the corporate downsizing of the 80s and 90s quite a few large companies outsource all their machining. My neighbors have a family owned shop full of cnc equipment and compete successfully for contracts from IBM etc.. They are also avid hunters... you do the math.



Undertoad  Tuesday Nov 27 10:25 AM

I was surfing last night all over the place and happened across some text that apparently was generated from the rec.guns newsgroup. Don't ask me to find the site again because I didn't bookmark it.

It was a set of scenarios for people who want to carry concealed weapons. The bad guy is here, you are here, what do you do?

If concealed carry folks studied these sorts of things, everyone would be much safer, not less, because they outline under what conditions you should draw, show, fire - and when you shouldn't do anything of the sort.

They made clear that, under many situations that may seem like the ideal case to start an old west gunfight, the best practice is to do nothing. If there is no evidence that your life is at risk, you don't pull out a gun. Example? If you are challenged for your wallet or purse and you have no evidence that the mugger is using deadly force, you just give up your goods, shrug, and say your money was worth less than your life.

Most of the scenarios came from real-life situations. In some of them, the actual person carrying told their story.

Having seen a lot of this sort of thinking amongst the gun crowd makes me feel better about the whole situation. Most people who carry seem to do so with a very strong understanding of the responsibilities that come with it. They understand the meaning of deadly force and don't want to use it unless absolutely necessary. The common notion that gun carriers consider themselves to be modern-day wild west gunslingers is false.



dave  Tuesday Nov 27 11:06 AM

Tony -

Exactly.

We have a number of guns in the house. Two of them are handguns (yes, they're all legal and everything). One of them is here exclusively for self defense (the other is for training and taking pot shots at the neighborhood kids - ya know, fun stuff ). That gun is unloaded and unclipped - to fire a shot, the clip has to be loaded, a round introduced into the chamber and the safety turned off. We've never used it, and we expect that we never will have to. It's there ONLY if someone is doing bodily harm. You might be really pissed off if the neighbor's kid breaks in and steals your computer at night, but you'll feel real bad if you KILL him for it. Most law-abiding gun owners that have them for protection (and hunting, though I do not - and target shooting, which I have been known to do on occasion) value life - that's why they have guns protecting themselves in the first place. It's a very rare occasion that we'll actually find it necessary to use one. And so we don't.



MaggieL  Tuesday Nov 27 02:41 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar

Assume shots fired at people - i'm not that silly geeez.
That's called "begging the question". Your hypotheticals are full of holes, jag. Now go do your homework or something. I'm not going to try to debate this issue with you any further, you're not prepared.

My sidearm has a purpose that goes beyond "shooting at people". I've never shot at a person, and I hope it's never needful. By analogy, I didn't install fire extinguishers in my house hoping I'll have a fire. But if I *do* have a fire I"ll use my extinguisher on it while waiting for the fire department to show up. I don't belive that only firemen should have extinguishers.

Tony, I'm glad you noticed that a lot of us who carry are concerned about tactical ethics and the appropriate use of deadly force. ESR wrote a great piece called "Ethics From The Barrel of a Gun" that's worth a read, google the title and you'll find it. And the rec.guns material is apropos too. Every gun owner has a legal and moral responsibility to understand the issues involved.

And the laws about what force may be legally applied *vary* from state to state. That fellow locally who gunned down the naked drunk who was trying to get into his house at 3am was way over the line, for example (especially since he kept firing after the drunk was down) and he's likely going to go down for manslaughter. In Texas, he probably wouldn't.


dave  Tuesday Nov 27 03:21 PM

The firing after he was down part would be the damning thing. Otherwise, the law generally tends to side on whether or not you felt you were in danger. Once someone is down though, they're down...

Sad, really. 'Cause that was definitely out of line. Like I implied earlier, I would only use deadly force if I felt I or a loved one was in direct danger.



Undertoad  Tuesday Nov 27 04:09 PM

If that was the scenario - naked man trying to get in the house at 3am - what would be the best action?

The naked person can't possibly have deadly force. The first question is, will he ever get past that door? Is the door flimsy? If no, you call 911, turn on all the lights, and watch and wait. If yes, if you have 30 seconds you get the cell phone and the gun and go out the BACK door, probably dialing 911 at the same time. You take the gun so that A) he won't get it, and B) you have some recourse if he has non-drunk, non-naked friends outside.

You could hide inside the house, but then you might not know if the situation's over.



dave  Tuesday Nov 27 04:39 PM

Tony -

I tend to agree with you here as well. If I were in that situation, I would turn on all the lights, call the police and wait until they got there. The guy would probably be arrested and charged with indecent exposure and public drunkenness, get some community service hours and all's well. The doors in my house are thick and sturdy (that's important in any house, and I wouldn't have it any other way), and the windows are relatively tough. If they did manage to come through a window, I would likely tell them "I have a gun, and I will not hesitate to use stopping force if I feel I'm in danger. Please leave immediately." Of course, if they were trying to get in because they were scared or whatever (you know how drunk people can get), I'd try and wrap them up in a blanket and get them some help. All depends on the situation. In any event, shooting a naked drunk person is wrong, and shooting them after they're down is despicable. The person that did that should have his/her gun-owning rights taken away and should definitely serve jail time. To keep that right, one needs to act responsibly with it. Otherwise, they don't deserve it at all.



CharlieG  Tuesday Nov 27 05:50 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by Undertoad
snip... if you have 30 seconds you get the cell phone and the gun and go out the BACK door, probably dialing 911 at the same time. ...snip
Undertoad,
first, in most states, you are in NO obligation to retreat from your own house - you may hold your ground, and if after you announce yourself, the perp continues into the house, there is a presumption of deadly force

Second, there can be deadly force with a naked person! If you a 95 lb elderly woman being attacked by a 250 lb 6 foot 5 young male, that would be considered deadly force - however, if your a 175 lb middle agged man being attacked, it almost definately not!

Understanding when you can use deadly force is not trivial, and I would suggest anyone who ever goes armed in any way should read up or take a class on this, pertaining to the laws (both on the books, and the usually more restrictive case law) in your state


MaggieL  Tuesday Nov 27 06:12 PM

Well, the story here is that the homeowner was awakened by a naked man trying to enter his *back* door. It emerged after the shooting that the man was his neighbor's son (who didn't live there) who apparently had the odd habit of going out naked at night and peeing in the backyard. BUt apparently this particular time he was too drunk to realize he's somehow gotten to the *neighbor's* back door. I imagine we'll never know how hard he was trying to get in, but then considering how drunk he was I suspect if he was frightened and disoriented he wasn't gentle. So Mr. Homeowner is awakened by noise at his back door, and finds naked guy back there. From the neighborhood where this went down I would expect there might be an enclosed back patio, lots of glass and so forth; it might have been reasonable to think he might have enetered the home.

But what kept this from being a "no bill" out of the Grand Jury was that forensics showed two shots to the head from an angle consistant with being fired while standing over the prone figure of the naked guy. I suspect there may be an element of homophobic panic here.

But the naked drunk is elegible for the Darwin Award, IMHO.



Whit  Tuesday Nov 27 06:22 PM

&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;I find it interesting that no one has brought up the possibility of shooting to wound in this situation. Deadly force is certainly to extreme but I think shooting the drunk in the leg would be well deserved. Is this because of the all to legitimate fear of civil lawsuit?

&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;By the way, as a martial artist I can think of many potentialy leathal attacks I could easily do naked. Unless the shooter knew in advance that the attacker was drunk it was a potentialy deadly situation. I don't know about the rest of you but if someone barged through my door I had better know them or they better back down instantly. Otherwise I'm not likely to give them much chance to do anything. Nudity, not withstanding some guy charging in to the home is not something you be cool about.

&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Of course I'm probably going to be even more pissy about the whole deal if the guy is naked, but that's just me.



CharlieG  Tuesday Nov 27 07:47 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by Whit
&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;I find it interesting that no one has brought up the possibility of shooting to wound in this situation. ...snip
Shooting to wound is a BAD idea, and may even get you put in jail!

The only time you are justified in using deadly force is if your, or another persons life is in immediate danger (Reasonable man test). If you believe your life is in danger, you shoot to END THE THREAT, ASAP! That means shooting for center body mass. Remember, it's actually hard to shoot a person - you've been surprised, the adrenaline is going a mile a minute, your probably half awake, your SCARED - it's kinda hard to aim in that situation. This is part of the reason you hear about cops firing 5 or 10 shots and only hitting with one or 2 (The first shot amost always goes into the floor between the cop and the perp - the cop actually pulls the trigger before the gun is even up).

If you admit to shooting to wound, it means that you were not that worried, and therefore did NOT have a valid reason to shoot - or at least that's what a DA who wants you convicted is going to say

I'm a gun owner - I don't own a pistol (I don't feel the need), but I have read a bunch on this. Folks, you shoot someone, even in valid self defense, you are in for a heap of legal problems. You're probably going to have to prove it in court at least once, and probably twice (The probable is the victims family, the possible is the DA if he doesn't think it's a "Good Shoot")

Most gun owners know this, and have thought about it.


MaggieL  Tuesday Nov 27 11:37 PM

Well, Masad Ayoob says that when asked "Did you shoot to kill?" your answer should be "No, I shot to live."

But the facts in this case aren't pretty.
--------------------------------------------------------------
Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce L. Castor Jr. charged an Upper Gwynedd man with voluntary manslaughter yesterday in the shooting death of a naked neighbor who, he told police, appeared to be trying to break into his townhouse.

Castor said he decided to bring the charges after concluding that Paul Bellina, 52, had continued to fire at neighbor Craig Holtzman even after Holtzman was fleeing. The final shot was fired downward at Holtzman's head as he lay on the ground, mortally wounded, according to Castor's reconstruction.

"I came to conclude beyond any doubt that the fatal rounds were fired outside, when Holtzman was incapable of providing any threat," Castor said at a news conference.

The incident occurred about 4:30 a.m. Sept. 13, when, according to an affidavit filed in the case, the 31-year-old Holtzman, whose blood-alcohol level was 0.22 percent, left the basement of his parents' home to urinate outside. He then mistakenly tried to enter Bellina's home, which has a basement door [sliding plate glass -MSL] identical to theirs.

Unable to enter and having sounded a burglar alarm, Holtzman turned to walk away. That is when Bellina unlocked and opened the door, ordering Holtzman to put his hands up and lie down on the ground.

Holtzman put his hands up, the affidavit said, but then began walking toward Bellina, disoriented and ignoring his requests to stop and get down. As Bellina backed into his basement, Holtzman followed him. There, officials believe, Bellina shot Holtzman twice with his 9mm Ruger handgun.

After being hit, Holtzman uttered, "Ouch," and then turned and fled, only to be shot twice in the back and once in the arm, Castor said. Following him, Castor said, Bellina shot Holtzman three more times, in the head. Bellina hit Holtzman with a total of eight shots, the affidavit states.

Bellina, a Vietnam veteran, has said he was protecting himself, his girlfriend, and her 10-year-old daughter, who were in the house. He told police that he simply "kept firing until the threat was dead," the affidavit states.

But, according to Castor, the legal line from self-defense to manslaughter was crossed when Bellina stepped outside his door. "At this point, Holtzman is no longer a threat to him. Holtzman is fleeing and probably mortally wounded, and therefore there is no permission under Pennsylvania law to use deadly force," the district attorney said.

Under Pennsylvania's criminal statutes, a person commits voluntary manslaughter if, at the time of the killing, he is acting under a sudden and intense passion resulting from serious provocation.

Bellina's attorney, Patrick J. McMenamin Jr. of Montgomeryville, rejected Castor's conclusion. "It was absolutely a case of self-defense," McMenamin said after Bellina's arraignment on manslaughter and reckless-endangerment charges in Blue Bell before District Justice Patricia Zaffarano. "I think the evidence will show that he was afraid."

After posting 10 percent of $30,000 bail, Bellina declined to comment except to ask reporters to get out of the way of his van. A preliminary hearing is tentatively set for Tuesday. If convicted at trial, Bellina could be sentenced to a maximum of 22 years on both charges.

Bellina, who owns a home-inspection business, has said that he did not know Holtzman, an assembler of gym equipment who had recently moved in with his parents, whose townhouse is next door to Bellina's on Browning Court in Upper Gwynedd's Gwynedale neighborhood, off Sumneytown Pike near South Broad Street.

According to the affidavit, however, Holtzman's brother Eric told police that the men had met when Craig Holtzman had discussed buying Bellina's motorcycle.

There was no answer at either the Holtzman or Bellina residence yesterday.

The decision to charge Bellina came after two weeks of speculation while authorities awaited the results of toxicology, ballistics and forensics tests. Castor had initially believed the shooting to be justified and said again yesterday that he believed Bellina felt he was justified in his actions.

At least one legal expert said he was not surprised by Castor's decision. "I can understand under all the circumstances why a prosecutor might think he has to file charges," said Leonard Packel, a criminal-law professor at Villanova University Law School. "But I don't know what a jury will do," he said.

Castor acknowledged that his decision would likely be second-guessed.

"I think that there will be great speculation now and in the months to come," Castor said, "but I am confident that, under Pennsylvania law, this is the correct decision."

--http://inq.philly.com/content/inquir...e/NSHOOT27.htm



jaguar  Wednesday Nov 28 01:15 AM

Quote:
Copyright © 1998 The Associated Press
The United States has by far the highest rate of gun deaths -- murders, suicides and accidents -- among the world's 36 richest nations, a government study found. The U.S. rate for gun deaths in 1994 was 14.24 per 100,000 people. Japan had the lowest rate, at .05 per 100,000.
The study, done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is the first comprehensive international look at gun-related deaths. It was published Thursday in the International Journal of Epidemiology.

The CDC would not speculate why the death rates varied, but other researchers said easy access to guns and society's acceptance of violence are part of the problem in the United States.
"If you have a country saturated with guns -- available to people when they are intoxicated, angry or depressed -- it's not unusual guns will be used more often," said Dr. Rebecca Peters, a Johns Hopkins University fellow specializing in gun violence….

…Japan, where very few people own guns, averages 124 gun-related attacks a year, and less than 1 percent end in death. Police often raid the homes of those suspected of having weapons.
Also at the bottom of the list were South Korea with .12 per 100,000 people, followed by Hong Kong with .14, Mauritius with .19, Singapore with .21, Taiwan with .37 and England and Wales with .41.
The study found that gun-related deaths were five to six times higher in the Americas than in Europe or Australia and New Zealand and 95 times higher than in Asia.
By CHELSEA J. CARTER, Associated Press Writer
Better late than never.

As for the fire extinguisher analergy - last i checked the primary purpose of having a fire extinguisher in your home was not to kil people.


Whit  Wednesday Nov 28 01:46 AM

&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Thanks for the answer CharlieG, that makes alot of sense. It's also a prime example of why I don't own a gun. I simply don't have the training for it. Therefore it would be irresponsible for me to have one. Of course should I ever get the training I most likely will get a gun.
&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Wow, and thanks to MaggieL for letting us out-of-towners in on the story.
&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Damn, Bellina just went nuts with the whlole shooting thing. He's in it deep as it's hard to claim self-defense on the three head shots. Holtzman being outside and on the ground, not to mention that he clearly wasn't concealing a weapon on his person... Still I can understand the 'keep going till the threat stops moving' idea. It's a shame that somebody died because they were to drunk to find their house. Not to mention the fact that he went to the door of a man ready to shoot.



CharlieG  Wednesday Nov 28 07:38 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by MaggieL
Well, Masad Ayoob says that when asked "Did you shoot to kill?" your answer should be "No, I shot to live."

But the facts in this case aren't pretty.
...snip
Yeah, that's an ugly one, and if I was the DA, I would bring the guy up on charges, and let the Grand Jury return a true bill/no true bill, and take it from there

I could find my copy of "In Gravest Extreme" to quote Ayoob, or I would have


CharlieG  Wednesday Nov 28 07:43 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by jaguar


Better late than never.

As for the fire extinguisher analergy - last i checked the primary purpose of having a fire extinguisher in your home was not to kil people.
That study was OK as far as it goes - of course the murder rate in the US has gone WAY down since that study was published nearly 4 years ago, using data from about 6 years ago, and England's and Japan's murder rate has gone way up.

Japan is an interesting case - if you combine the murder and suicide rates of both Japan and the US, you will find they are very similar - In the US, we tend to kill other people when we don't fit in, and/or are angry. In Japan, the culture is that the problem is "me", and so not to bring shame on your family, you kill yourself


Undertoad  Wednesday Nov 28 11:18 AM

That is very interesting!

For another thread a few months back, I looked up the stats for violent crimes in England, and they are really on the rise. The number of people shot in the US is much higher than in England, but those numbers only affect a small set of people. The numbers who are robbed or just beaten up are much higher, much more likely to impact someone, and in England they are about 50% higher than here.

Plus, the shooting in the US is largely social darwinism at work. As Dennis Miller says: sometimes the herd needs a little thinning.

Now, I know, that makes me a cruel, cold, heartless and thoughtless person. But if you watch "Cops", even just once a year, you see the people who are shooting each other. I don't hang out with these people, and if I did, the escape route would be very clear. Unlike other social problems, this one doesn't trap you into its lifestyle; if you just don't hang out with the shirtless guy at the laundromat with crack vials in his pocket, chances are you won't get shot. Probably half my friends over the years have been gun owners, but I've never been shot.



MaggieL  Wednesday Nov 28 12:29 PM

OK, Jag wins another award for point-missing and blatant red-herring maneuver on the fire extinguisher analogy. I shan't feed the troll any more than that, beyond mentioning that quoting Jefferson while advocating gun prohibition isn't the smartest thing to do.

Re UTs shirtless laundromat guy, while I don't *hang out* down there, I'm not able to afford to live in the nice isolated suburb that UT lives in (which isn't actually that far away from here geopgraphically) Nonetheless I'm within credible striking distance of several such laundromats; inasmuch as there's not much left that's worth stealing any closer to Laundromatville--it's kind of grazed-out. (locals: I'm talking about Norristown). So when I need to drive though/near those neighborhoods, having a dozen rounds of 9mm jacketed hollow-point standing by is somewhat reassuring.

That doesn't mean I don't keep the car doors locked.

As for the "unfortunate" drunk, as I said, I think he's Darwin Award fodder. Anybody who's *that* fucked up wandering around outside his home is a public menace. What if he'd stumbled out into the street in front of a car at that hour? He might have caused an accident that injured or killed someone else who *wasn't* being an asshole at the time.

This doesn't excuse excessive force on the part of the 'Nam vet...who recently withdrew his manslaughter plea bargain; he may be hooking up with a new lawyer who's thinking of a PTSD defense. That's plausible, at least. Either way, if he's convicted on the manslaughter charge *OR* sucessfully mounts a PTSD defense, in this state he loses his right to *own* firearms, much less *carry* them. Which from what we know is probably A Good Thing.



Undertoad  Wednesday Nov 28 12:34 PM

Yabbut before I lived here, I lived in an apartment complex that was literally on the Norriwtown border. I still didn't get shot.

I got punched out once, but never shot.



dave  Wednesday Nov 28 02:31 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by MaggieL
As for the "unfortunate" drunk, as I said, I think he's Darwin Award fodder. Anybody who's *that* fucked up wandering around outside his home is a public menace. What if he'd stumbled out into the street in front of a car at that hour? He might have caused an accident that injured or killed someone else who *wasn't* being an asshole at the time.
I'm not sure we can make any kind of judgement on him. Yeah, he was excessively drunk. I personally am opposed to people being un-sober - so I can make no apologies for him there (though I still don't think we can judge - any number of things can lead to excessive drinking).

Sure, he could have wandered into the road and gotten hit by a car, possibly injuring or killing someone else. That would have been tragic. But he didn't. He got confused, tried to get back into the house, and was murdered for it. What if a blind person loses their seeing-eye dog, stumbles in front of a car, gets hit and kills the driver? Is it their fault for being out in society? Are they a Darwin Award nominee for being in a crowded city while being blind? How do you judge that?

Let me pose an unlikely, yet not impossible, scenario for you.

Robin goes out with some guy. Seems like an alright guy. Decides to have some drinks. Maybe a few too many drinks. Maybe it feels really good so she gets fucking shitfaced. This guy does the respectable thing (after letting her get totally trashed) and drops her off in front of your house. But because she's totally trashed, she knocks on the front door of another house. No one's answering, and she starts yelling "Mom! Let me in!" Not 5 minutes later, she's laying dead on the front patio/porch/stoop with 3 bullet holes in her head and a few in her abdomen/chest. Would you honestly say the same thing about that? "Well, I loved her, but her mental deficiencies coupled with her pathetic judgement render her a fine nominee for the Darwin Awards." Come on. Of course you wouldn't.

My point is, I sense this feeling of elitism over the drunk guy. Did he make a bad decision, both in getting drunk and in going outside to urinate? Obviously. But it shouldn't have killed him. I think that maybe if he had done something that's so obviously stupid and carries a very real possibility of, uh, being removed from the gene pool, then it would be "Darwin Award fodder". But that's not what happened. He made a little slip up that probably thousands of people have done and survived. He just happened to have an overly-eager-to-use-his-weapon neighbor.

I don't think we can judge him based on what we know. I don't think we can say any more than "it's a bad idea to get that drunk" and "it's a doubly bad idea to go outside when you're that drunk". Questioning his intelligence is beyond any of us.


jaguar  Wednesday Nov 28 03:57 PM

Quote:
Now go do your homework or something. I'm not going to try to debate this issue with you any further, you're not prepared.

Quote:
Just because you *state* something you think is obvious dosen't make it *true*, and challenging you to back it up with reason isn't "muddying" it, except to the extent that it forces you to focus on how muddy it was to begin with.
Well i did some homework, porvided solid statisical evidence with analysis by experts that a gun saturated society results in more shooting deaths which you then proceeded to ignore and instead branded me a troll for another minor comment. ah fuck this thread i'm sick of it.


dave  Wednesday Nov 28 04:17 PM

Hey jaggy-poo -

mefinks she was making a condescending statement about your age. You know. Being 16, you probably go to school and have homework. "Go do your homework" == "get out of here, youngun, you have not the wisdom to participate in this conversation". Or at least that's how I interpreted it.

BTW, props for backing up your statement (at least somewhat) with some gathered facts.



jaguar  Thursday Nov 29 02:37 AM

I know perfectly well she was.

Just to clarify the fire extinguisher analergy:

If you use a fire extinguisher to put out a fire it results in (as in a house fire in an occupied house - for the nitpickers here) a life or lives saved. Shoot an intruder and it resuls a life or lives saved - at the cost of one. That's a fundamental difference. I"m trying to find that report or some other stats etc but its harder than i thouhgt it would be. Mabye MaggieL would prefer if i quoted the NRL



MaggieL  Thursday Nov 29 11:30 AM

The point of the analogy was that you don't equip yourself with a fire extinguisher in the hopes that a fire is going to happen, and I haven't armed myself because I'm itching for a firefight. Please refrain from clairifying my analogies until you understand them. It had nothing to do with bodycount.

And the comment about Jag's age isn't that "being young, he must not be able to engage in debate" but rather "I finally understood why he was unwilling to engage in debate when I found out how young he is".

Dham, you did your best to load your hypothetrical emotionally by brining my daughter into it. But knowing her, I know it's a much more unlikely scenario than even you admit it is--she shares my values about a lot of things.

The place to get *that* shitfaced--so throughly besotted that you don't know where you are--is *not* anywhere outside your home...even in the backyard. It's just plain *stupid* to do that, which is what Darwin Awards are awarded for.

I'm unmoved by "poor guy, he was too drunk to be responsible for himself" arguments. He deliberately incapacitated himself, and then went bouncing around in public. As it was, he randomly picked the worst possible house on the block to try to *break into*, and consequently got killed rather than arrested, or caused some other disaster. Perhaps he *thought* he was trying to get into his own house. But the reason he couldn't even *tell* was *his* doing; I'll shed no tears for him.

His irresponsibility could have killed *someone else*, so he wasn't the only potential victim of his own recklessness. Saying "he didn't deserve to die" is empty--he willingly started a crapshoot where he or any number of the people around him could have gotten hurt. Would he have "deserved" to die if he'd wandered into the path of an oncoming train?

If you're going to deliberately fuck yourself up, especially to that degree, you have a responsibility to protect others from the consequences of your decision just as much as someone who decides to arm himself has a responsibility to ensure that his use of deadly force is appropriate.

I've been intoxicated myself...sometimes *very* intoxicated, and deliberately so. But I was at pains beforehand to ensure that *I* would be safe and would not endanger others just because I was taking a mental holiday. The fact that you make yourself incapable of being responsible does not relieve you of responsibility.

If I'm an "elitist" because I accept responsibility for my own behavior and distain those who don't, then I'll wear that title proudly.



warch  Thursday Nov 29 12:38 PM

Am I my brother's keeper? If not, well then sorry to bug you. If so, then when?



russotto  Thursday Nov 29 03:48 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by Undertoad
turn on all the lights, and watch and wait. If yes, if you have 30 seconds you get the cell phone and the gun and go out the BACK door, probably dialing 911 at the same time. You take the gun so that A) he won't get it, and B) you have some recourse if he has non-drunk, non-naked friends outside.
Uh-uh. I don't leave the house. I'm not letting some drunk and violent (he broke down the door) guy have free run of my house. Besides, I don't have a cell phone. This applies whether I have a gun or not, BTW.


MaggieL  Thursday Nov 29 09:25 PM

Two small corrections: The naked guy was *at* the back door, and it's not clear from what I've read at what point the shooter realized he was naked or drunk.

And nothing I read said he *did* break in, only that he was *trying* to get in through a locked sliding glass door, and evidently making enough noise at it to awaken the shooter.

In case anybody's unclear as to my point of view, I'm *not* holding a brief for the shooter, what's known about the case is enough that he should at least stand trial for manslaughter.

But the drunk was a bozo.



jaguar  Friday Nov 30 05:01 AM

argh
I never said you were itching for a firefight - merely that one has gain at zero cost and the other has gain at a cost......

As for being unwilling to debate i find that ironic since you seem to be more interested in nitpicking an analergy than attempting to mount a plausable defense to the damning evidence the CDC has produced.



MaggieL  Wednesday Dec 19 11:29 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by MaggieL


But the drunk was a bozo.
And here's a further update on the case. The shooter, Bellina, is being sued by the drunk's family. Also named in the suit is Bellina's business (deep pockets, of course)...and the *bar* where the drunk got drunk. So this clown disn't accidently get out into public, he was actually out *driving* in that condition, or worse....since he had time to get home, take off his clothes and then got outside to pee. His BAC was .22 at autopsy.

The newspaper article also discloses that the drunk set off Bellina's burgular alarm trying to get into his house.


alleycat  Wednesday Dec 19 12:26 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by warch
I'll vote for basic human rights over traditional cultural practice any day.
Hear! Hear!


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