H. Lord: Ban on booze didn't work either

So, the liberals would like to ban what they call "assault rifles." Never mind definitions. The important thing is to do something. After all, Congress is supposed to solve every problem. Never mind the U.S. Constitution. Never mind the Second Amendment. Just disarm law-abiding citizens and then the children will be protected ... right?

Wrong.

Some of us are old enough to remember Prohibition. The 18th Amendment was supposed to ban the manufacture, sale and transportation of intoxicating liquors. It did not work. Finally, it was repealed and bootlegging ended.

Well, in my opinion, the so-called "gun-free zones" in schools and colleges and on certain military bases (such as Fort Hood) are in the same category. They constitute an open invitation to lunatics to get guns and come to shoot people with relative safety.

Repeal the laws about gun-free zones. Let teachers and administrators have concealed carry. The lunatics will have no incentive to come in with guns blazing.

Harvey Lord, South Paris

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Comments

RONALD RIML's picture

Suicide Rate Comparison: U.S. v U.K.

Suicide Rates per/100,000 Population - http://www.who.int/mental_health/prevention/suicide_rates/en/

United States:

Male 17.7
Female 4.5

United Kingdom:

Male 10.9
Female 3.0

Suicide by Firearms - http://www.scielosp.org/pdf/bwho/v86n9/a17v86n9.pdf

United States

Men: 60.6%
Female: 35.7%

United Kingdom:

Male 3.5%
Female 0.6%

RONALD RIML's picture

Why do so many American 'Gun Owners' kill themselves???

If, as Mark points out - Guns don't kill - People do

RONALD RIML's picture

How many gun 'Homicides' now???

Latest data, some of which may be several years old (Not counting suicides)

According to http://www.gunpolicy.org

U.K. 18
France 142
Germany 158
Japan 11
Switzerland 40
Sweden 18
Denmark 15
Australia 30

U.S. 11,078

AL PELLETIER's picture

Concerning your letter, Mr. Lord

Any issue since the founding of our country that has not had the support of 80% of the populace has not worked. Prohibition, war on drugs, Vietnam, Korea(still a stalemate) plus many more just didn't work because the support was not unanimous.
We won the Revolution, WWI, WWII, Gulf war and many others because Americans came together.
It's time for Americans to come together once again and solve a national problem that has caused us all so much pain.
So many in this forum, including myself, throw out ideas, wise cracks, criticisms, throw the words Liberals and Conservatives around and basically bash each other.
Nothing we say in this forum will accomplish anything regarding the subject of Mr. Lords letter.
I urge you to please read Gabby Gifford and Mark Kelly's plan. It brings us all together for a cause we simply can't ignore. americansforresponsiblesolutions.org
Thanks

Bob Woodbury's picture

Wrong, Mr Lord...

I think more than liberals are horrified by what happened in Connecticut. It's too bad "conservatives" consider a six-year-old body with 11 bullet holes in it is just the cost of doing business as usual. Not to mention 19 of the child's classmates and six teacher with "multiple" bullet holes in each of their bodies. Oh - sorry - I keep forgetting - guns don't kill people, do they?

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

"It's too bad 'conservatives'

"It's too bad 'conservatives' consider a six-year old body with 11 bullet holes in it just the cost of doing business as usual."
You type stuff like that and expect to be taken seriously?

Bob Woodbury's picture

See Gravel's...

...comment above.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

The cost of freedom is not

The cost of freedom is not cheap.

RONALD RIML's picture

Yet Mark is very cheap when it comes to Taxes.......

Beginning to appear that it's only his guns he holds dear.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

No Ronald, I also support

No Ronald, I also support your right to own guns along with everyone's right to own guns. Perhaps you are confusing me with some leftest politicians who want more gun regulation except when it comes to their guns.

Bob Woodbury's picture

You're unbelievable.

You're unbelievable.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

You have been begging for

You have been begging for that response for some time, have you not?

Bob Woodbury's picture

No.

Actually, I thought there might be a little empathy. I was wrong.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

"just the cost of doing

"just the cost of doing business as usual."

You made this comment in several posts. You are not looking for empathy, you are looking for a response to justify your believes. I gave it to you. Happy now?

Bob Woodbury's picture

No.

You did describe YOUR mindset very well, however.

AL PELLETIER's picture

OBSOLETE

CLICHE'

AL PELLETIER's picture

Best plan yet.

Gabby Gifford and Mark Kelly have just launched a new web site called americansforresponsiblesolutions.org. The plan they've embraced does not trample the second amendment but approaches the problems that involve these insane weapons of mass destruction and mass killings from a new perspective.
Weather your pro gun or against guns this new grass roots approach is better then anything Washington has, and will come up with.
It is the most practical solution I've seen yet. You know the old saying, Money talks and Bull---- walks". Well we all know it's money from lobbyist that runs Washington and the NRA has lots of it to throw around. Gabby and Mark's plan that serves both pro and con gun rights needs funds to be heard in DC.
Weather you've agreed with me in the past or not, I urge you to read what Gabby has to say and contribute to the best plan yet, if you can, if you can't please just get on board. Thank You All

MARK GRAVEL's picture

" insane weapons of mass

" insane weapons of mass destruction and mass killings"

Emotional inflammation.

AL PELLETIER's picture

WISE

CRACK

Jonathan Albrecht's picture

The Constitution gives no one the right to carry any firearm

anywhere and do anything they want with it. The law-abiding citizen vs crimunal mythology gets us nowhere. A criminal is a law-abiding citizen one microsecond away from pulling the trigger. On the other hand gun registration won't and can't work with 300 million firearms in private hands. If it did it would be far too expensive economically and politically. Guns in the hands of responsible gun owners threaten no one.
The issue here is very simple how do we prevent mass shootings and if we can't prevent them how can we reduce the carnage. Any government has as a primary responsibility the protection of its citizens. Requiring universal background checks based on accurate, criminal and mental health histories will not be perfect, but its still good and could be made much better. Greater regulation of semi-automatic weapons designed with detachable magazines by including them in the National Firearms Act of 1934 can save lives. It has the advantage that the Supreme Court has already upheld the Constitutionality of the NFA and that no weapon is "banned". Banning "assault weapons" is a definitional and practical stupidity. Coupled with a fair market value semi-automatic buyback program these proposals could save some lives.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Somewhat sensible thinking!

Somewhat sensible thinking!

CLAIRE GAMACHE's picture

The Long View

Given the proliferation of guns going on now and the attitude that individual rights trump public safety, we can expect some kind of gun massacre about once a month somewhere in this country from now on. At some point, people will get fed up with the carnage and do something about regulating guns. You would think that 20 dead babies shot in their classroom would do it but maybe not. I expect education will be more powerful than bans just as education on the dangers of cigarettes, which were even more popular than guns, turned the tide on public opinion and resulted in a more enlightened attitude towards what is a public danger. I don't expect there ever will be an outright ban on guns of any type but I do hope there will be a saner way to deal with who has access and where they may be used. I also think given the pile of money that the NRA and gun manufacturers are making off the blood of massacres that they could share some of it and donate to mental health research especially for our returning soldiers with PTSD issues.

Jonathan Albrecht's picture

Approval

"individual rights trump public safety" - excellent phrase capturing the issue elegantly.

RONALD RIML's picture

It's actually ""individual rights trump public sanity"

For accuracy.....

MARK GRAVEL's picture

You are right on one front -

You are right on one front - freedom trumps safety. The reset is just emotional speculation.

Jason Theriault's picture

So guns are booze?

Are you saying that people can be addicted to guns?

Taking the analogy further, do you think people should be allowed to drink at schools and on military bases and in public?

BTW - No one on my side is talking about a ban, or at least not realistically. Stricter controls, kinda like how minors are not allowed to have alcohol. Just like preventing minors from drinking, it wont be 100% successful, but it has slowed down things.

RONALD RIML's picture

Can people be addicted to Guns??? You Bet!!

Addicted To Bang: The Neuroscience of the Gun

Forbes Magazine - Steven Kotler, Contributor
Covering the far frontiers of science, technology and culture.

“If you combine the populations of Great Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark and Australia, you get a population roughly the size of the United States, where, last year, there were 32,000 gun death. Those other countries, which all have a form of gun control, had a total of 112.

—paraphrase, Aaron Sorkin, The West Wing, 2001

In the wake of recent tragic events, there have been a raft of articles about new reasons for gun-control and the psychological make-up of mass murderers (See NYT or WSJ), but the authors of this piece (co-authored with neuroscientist James Olds) believe there’s a critical component missing from this discussion: the very addictive nature of firearms.

There are a number of different ways to think about this issue, but a decent place to start is Steven Pinker. In The Better Angels of Our Nature, Pinker makes the data-driven argument that violence has been decreasing steadily since the Middle Ages and, across the boards, is now at its lowest point in history. But this isn’t the case with gun violence.

Consider this report (about Oakland, CA) from yesterday’s San Francisco Chronicle:

Data compiled by the Urban Strategies Council—which works with, and collects data for, agencies like the OPD—shows the overall number of reported shootings rising in recent years, from 869 in 2009 to more than 1,200 in 2011, the highest since 2003, the earliest year for which they have data. Homicides—which are by and large committed by people with guns—have followed a similar trend. As of early December, 2012, the city had already seen 117 homicides, soaring past 103 for last year and perhaps reaching the highest total since 2008 police say, when 124 people died.

So the question becomes why is violence overall declining, yet gun violence still on the rise? The answer, we suspect, might be dopamine.

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter, one of the brain’s basic signaling molecules. Emotionally, we feel its presence as engagement, excitement, creativity, and a desire to investigate and make meaning out of the world. It’s released whenever we take a risk, or encounter something novel. It reinforces exploratory behavior. It also helps us survive that behavior. By increasing attention, information flow, and pattern recognition, in the brain, and heart rate, blood pressure and muscle firing timing, in the body, dopamine serves as a formidable skill-booster as well.

But its most famous attribute is as a motivator. It is released when we have the expectation of reward. Once dopamine becomes hardwired into a psychological reward loop, the desire to get more dopamine becomes the brain’s overarching preoccupation. Cocaine, for example, is widely considered the most addictive drug on earth. It does little more than flood the brain with dopamine and block its reuptake (sort of like SSRI’s block the reuptake of serotonin).

But it’s not just drug addiction. Gambling addiction, shopping addiction, sex addiction, porn addiction, coffee addiction, cigarette addiction, twitter and texting too. The list is long. And possibly growing, as now it’s time to talk about dopamine and our current gun addiction.

So what do we really know? Dopamine shows up when we take a risk—and firing a gun is always a risk. It shows up when we encounter something novel and since guns blow things up, well that usually pretty novel. If you’re serious about your guns and use them for target practice or hunting, well that requires pattern recognition and this increases dopamine as well.

Are there direct correlations? Has anyone yet done a PET or MRS scan (the only ways to screen for dopamine in the brain) of people just leaving a firing range? Not that we can tell (though we’ll outline this and a few possible areas of research in a moment). We do know, from copious amounts of video game research, that first person shooter games release dopamine, and this has been linked to everything from learning and rewards to ideas about violence and harm to winning and motivation.

What does all of this really mean? It means that the reason gun violence continues to rise (and the reason gun control legislation remains so hard to pass) is because we are quite literally addicted to our guns.

Two things make this even more alarming. First, because the human brain evolved in an era of immediacy—when threats and rewards were of the lions, tigers and food variety—the dopamine circuitry has an inborn timing mechanism. If the reward follows the stimulus by roughly 100-200 milliseconds, it’s sitting in dopamine’s sweet spot. Firing a muzzle loader—for example—would certainly release dopamine, but it takes too long between multiple firings for a significant reward loop to be created. Firing an automatic weapon, though, sits close to the sweet spot—an assault weapon can fire a round every 100 milliseconds. Meaning not only are guns addictive, but automatic weaponry is far more addictive than most.

Unfortunately, there’s a more frightening downside to consider. As Nora Volkow and her colleagues at the National Institute of Drug Abuse have well documented, the first true taste of a dopamine rush is always the best. After that, there are always diminishing returns. What this means in drug addicts is that the first time someone inhales cocaine feel so outrageously good compared to all the following times and, as a result, a junky will keep escalating their use patterns to try to get back to that original high. The same goes for guns. This suggests that for addicts, the desire to do more damage, cause more harm, and generally unleash holy terror will only increase over time.

Obviously, considering the scope of these ideas, a bit more research needs to be done. Besides the aforementioned PET/MRS scan, there are an even simpler tests. L-Dopa, the Parkinson’s drug, increases the level of dopamine in the brain. You could give subjects L-Dopa (compared to people given, say, naloxone, which blocks the opioid reward system) and have them fire guns at a range. After a set period of time, you can then see how much money they’d be willing to spend for another 30 minutes on the range (compared to controls). Our guess, the folks with more L-Dopa are gonna spend far more money.

The larger point is that if we’re really going to have a high-minded discussion more honest discussion about the role we want guns to play in the future of America, then acknowledging (and further researching) the addictive nature of bang seems a critical place to start."

*This article co-authored with Dr. James Olds, Director of the Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study at George Mason University.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

The smell of gunpowder is

The smell of gunpowder is addictive and intoxicating. That's why so many people enjoy shooting their mouth off; they brush their teeth with it.

RONALD RIML's picture

The smell of Hoppe's #9 used to be a Marketting Tool

.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Like the smell of NAPALM

Like the smell of NAPALM early in the morning?
No offense, but there's only one T in marketing. It got by the Pirate, but the parrot picked up on it, the little eagle-eyed nitpicker.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Harvey, Don't forget the war

Harvey,

Don't forget the war on drugs, another form of prohibition, is also a failure. Funny how people never learn from history.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

How are the Great Society and

How are the Great Society and that "war on poverty" working?

RONALD RIML's picture

Obviously we're wealthy enough.......

To be the 'Arsenal of Democracy'

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Roger that

Roger that

RONALD RIML's picture

Harvey - So People are going to go to 'Shoot-Easy's?'

Perhaps they'll blow each other away........

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

One of the Kennedys will

One of the Kennedys will figure out a way to make another fortune gathering empty shell casings and making lamps out of them.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Ronald "I hate the rich" Riml

Ronald "I hate the rich" Riml lives in an altered reality. The average gun owner is not shooting anyone.

RONALD RIML's picture

Yet we have so many more Firearm Homicides

than similar Average Countries. And who's living in altered reality????

“If you combine the populations of Great Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark and Australia, you get a population roughly the size of the United States, where, last year, there were 32,000 gun death. Those other countries, which all have a form of gun control, had a total of 112.

—paraphrase, Aaron Sorkin, The West Wing, 2001

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Ronald, I've quoted the

Ronald,

I've quoted the actual CDC statistics for firearm deaths below. First, note that guns killed slightly more than a falls, but less than the number of people who died from drugs - oh, and we have a war against drugs don't we.

Second, note that only 36.7% or 11,504 people die in a gun related homicide. Moreover, about 56% of those are justifiable homicide or accidental shootings. That leaves 5292 deaths in violence - one person against another. Notice that this number keeps getting smaller. That is why I'm not afraid of being shot in one of these random "mass shootings." The probably is statistically small.

I'll close by saying the if we look South of our boarder to Mexico, a country with some of the strictest gun regulations, has had over 60K deaths by guns last year. The violence is cultural and gun regulations do very little to stop the killing - look South readers, just look South.

"In 2009, a total of 39,147 persons died of drug-induced causes in the United States"

Firearm—In 2009, 31,347 persons died from firearm injuries in the United States (Tables 18 and 19), accounting for 17.7% of all injury deaths that year. The two major component causes of all firearm injury deaths in 2009 were suicide (59.8%) and homicide (36.7%). Firearm injuries (all intents) decreased 1.9% from 2008 to 2009. The age-adjusted death rate for firearm suicide did not change from 2008, whereas the death rate for firearm homicide decreased 5.0% in 2009 from 2008.

Fall—In 2009, 25,562 persons died as the result of falls, 14.4% of all injury deaths (Table 18). The overwhelming majority of fall-related deaths (97.0%) were unintentional. In 2009, the age-adjusted death rate for falls did not change significantly."

CDC Statistics: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr60/nvsr60_03.pdf

RONALD RIML's picture

"56% of those are justifiable homicide or accidental shootings.

Like an 'accidental' shooting makes it acceptable?? Are you out of your mind???

Obviously you're never attended to such an incident, and your blase regard for such an occurrence demonstrate the callousness which your attachment to firearms has instilled in you.

No wonder discussing this subject elicits such little reason with you.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

If the discussion is about

If the discussion is about mass killings, then one must look at it in that context. When you do, you'll find only a small, a very small fraction of those statistics matter. That said, we, as a country, may be about to spend a lot of money for very little benefit.

RONALD RIML's picture

'Mass Killings' only resurrect the discussion.

We've become quite inured to our normal daily dose of gun deaths. And those, too, are quite unacceptable - though don't seem to rattle the cages as a Newtown or Aurora does.

Overcome the 'Daily Dose' and the Mass Killings will follow.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Ronald, If you read the CDC

Ronald,

If you read the CDC report that I referenced, there is a plurality of risks more likely to take ones life than guns.

RONALD RIML's picture

So?

.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

So don’t get your panties

So don’t get your panties wedged up your crack over a few gun accidents.

AL PELLETIER's picture

You Are Truly Sick

.

RONALD RIML's picture

Mark Gravel wants us not to get upset

over a few gun accidents.

Interesting.

RONALD RIML's picture

Wake Up, Mark -

I posted our U.S. firearms homicide deaths of 11,078 for 2010 - http://www.gunpolicy.org/firearms/region/united-states

Thu, 01/10/2013 - 23:36 - while you were still dreaming up your response. I filtered out suicides.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Then you should have not used

Then you should have not used a misleading quote above. Moreover, when you are comparing statistics like these you need numbers that are scaled per capita. That is, deaths per 100,000 people to provide a fair comparison.

Twenty out of 100 is a higher percentage than 32,000 out of 300 Million for an illustrative example.

Aaron Capponi's picture

?

Nice to quote items 12 years old......

RONALD RIML's picture

Folks quote much older here.

Dispute the truth of it if you can.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Here is another why Ronald "I

Here is another why Ronald "I hate the rich" Riml distorts the truth.

While the US has about 285 times more gun deaths according to Ronald's statistics, the actual Murder rate in the US is only 4 times more than that in Britain.

How can that be? It is because people are killing people by some means other than guns.

This fact does add credibility to what I have said: It is the people responsible for killing, not the guns.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_intentional_homicide_rate

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Done

Done

AL PELLETIER's picture

I

Rest my case

MARK GRAVEL's picture

You rest what case? You need

You rest what case? You need to be more specific.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Q.E.D

Q.E.D

AL PELLETIER's picture

Your right!!

In Newtown CT. the mother was "the average gun owner", but allowed her personal arsenal of weaponry to end up in the hands of her mentally deranged son. The "average gun owner", such as myself, do very well with one deer hunting rifle, with a trigger lock and kept in a locked cabinet.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

That is a problem with

That is a problem with liberals – “What is good for me is good for everyone else.”

I defend people’s freedom to own as many guns as they can afford to purchase.

RONALD RIML's picture

And hope they blow themselves away.....

So's you can buy the guns from their Survivors.

I've known such opportunistic ghouls.

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