...a couple staffers had been armed?

Tags: control, gun, guns, killings, mass

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k - you left out the Kardashians --

"It's the fucking system that breeds these people."

What system is that? The school system?

Society in general.

Which is changeable.

I don't know the answer to that.  I suspect it depends on what particular subculture you are in.

It would be useful, I think, to break down that vaunted 9000+ homicides figure by various demographic factors.  It may well be that some segments of society have rates down in the sort of range Blaine's poster from a couple pages back would consider acceptable.

As has been pointed out before, the mere presence of guns is not the issue; I point to Switzerland, and I also remind people of what Cody said (a few hours ago but a couple of pages down), that within the US the states and locales with the strictest gun laws tend to be the ones with the most crime, both firearm related and not.

States with stricter gun control laws have fewer deaths from gun-related violence.

Last year, economist Richard Florida dove deep into the correlations between gun deaths and other kinds of social indicators. Some of what he found was, perhaps, unexpected: Higher populations, more stress, more immigrants, and more mental illness were not correlated with more deaths from gun violence. But one thing he found was, perhaps, perfectly predictable: States with tighter gun control laws appear to have fewer gun-related deaths. The disclaimer here is that correlation is not causation. But correlations can be suggestive:

“The map overlays the map of firearm deaths above with gun control restrictions by state,” explains Florida. “It highlights states which have one of three gun control restrictions in place – assault weapons’ bans, trigger locks, or safe storage requirements. Firearm deaths are significantly lower in states with stricter gun control legislation. Though the sample sizes are small, we find substantial negative correlations between firearm deaths and states that ban assault weapons (-.45), require trigger locks (-.42), and mandate safe storage requirements for guns (-.48).”

Because the real issue is total crime, not gun related crime.

But the real question is, do states with looser firearms laws have lower or higher overall crime rates?  The pro-gun thesis is that allowing ordinary citizens to have firearms reduces crime overall.

There was no firearms related crime in the 11th century.  But there was plenty of violence and mayhem.

The fallacy behind this sort of statistic is the assumption that the citizens of all states are homogeneously similar, but everyone knows that the typical Texan is far from identical to, say, a New Hampshireite. Studies based on "states with" have to find some way of accounting for that and I've never seen that done. Have you?

The fact that "Firearm deaths are significantly lower in states with stricter gun control legislation" means little unless you can disentangle the statistics from the fact that (to cite the map above) Californians aren't North Carolinians, for example.

I wonder about correlations with other population density, income, poverty rates, drug use, employment, etc?

I'm sure that liberalizing drug laws (only beginning to happen in the U.S.) and treating drug abuse as an illness instead of a crime would help a lot. 

But what about the guy selling the drugs?

If the drugs became legal, the thugs who presently control their distribution today would have to find other work.  So would the more casual sellers who perhaps have never committed a violent act in their lives.

People who deal drugs are the last ones who want them to become legalized; they would find their merchandise much less valuable.

I'd personally like to see full pardons for anyone whose "crime" was purely using drugs and maybe even selling them--but any sort of violent crime related to the business should never be pardoned.

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