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Breaking News
posted by takyon on Sunday June 12 2016, @06:00PM   Printer-friendly

A suspected Islamic terrorist opened fire at a gay nightclub in Florida, killing 50 people and wounding another 53 before he was killed by police. While authorities continue to investigate to determine whether this man had ties to ISIS, the terror organization has not been quiet in praising the attack. This comes three days after ISIS announced they would attack somewhere in Florida. Today's attack marks the largest act of terrorism on US soil since 9/11.

takyon: The gunman reportedly called 911 emergency services to pledge allegiance to ISIS. The President will hold a briefing momentarily. Compare this article to the original submission.


Original Submission   Late submission by physicsmajor

 
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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Arik on Sunday June 12 2016, @07:30PM

    by Arik (4543) on Sunday June 12 2016, @07:30PM (#358793) Journal
    "One of the things I am struggling to come up with is a measured, appropriate public policy response that would be effective at preventing a single, suicidal, nut from killing a bunch of people in a dark, crowded place."

    There is none. That's the whole problem. We've been fed this meme that every tragedy requires a new government response.

    Murder is murder. It's always horrible, it's always tragic, it's always illegal, and it still happens.

    What we *should* do in response to this is less. If we spent less money making the middle east into a hellhole we'd have less worry of blowback here.

    --
    If laughter is the best medicine, who are the best doctors?
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  • (Score: 2) by PocketSizeSUn on Sunday June 12 2016, @09:15PM

    by PocketSizeSUn (5340) on Sunday June 12 2016, @09:15PM (#358857)

    Unstable recent ISIS sympathiser goes on rampage...

    Sounds a lot more like an FBI entrapment target that went off on his own and ahead of schedule than a mid-east blowback to me.

    • (Score: 2) by Arik on Sunday June 12 2016, @09:46PM

      by Arik (4543) on Sunday June 12 2016, @09:46PM (#358888) Journal
      Perhaps you're right but that would still be blowback - the domestic response is part of the cycle.

      That said we don't know all the details and it's perfectly possible this guy was just crazy and would have done this or something like this for one name or another anyway.

      But the idea that just because a tragedy occurs a new law is needed is the big problem here. Absolutely retarded meme that the media-government complex just adore.
      --
      If laughter is the best medicine, who are the best doctors?
    • (Score: 1) by kurenai.tsubasa on Sunday June 12 2016, @11:25PM

      by kurenai.tsubasa (5227) on Sunday June 12 2016, @11:25PM (#358950) Journal

      I was thinking the exact same thing when the roommate told me about this. Check this out: Heavily armed man arrested near L.A. gay pride festival [reuters.com]. Perhaps the lizard people felt they were having a difficult time fomenting hatred among LGBT people towards Muslims.

  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by gman003 on Monday June 13 2016, @12:00AM

    by gman003 (4155) on Monday June 13 2016, @12:00AM (#358968)

    I disagree. We had mass shootings before islamic terrorism was a notable thing, and we will continue to have it afterward. I strongly suspect that many of the attacks attributed to islamic terrorism are simply the result of an unstable person latching on to something they think will give their life meaning. The same has happened with christian terrorism or environmentalist terrorism. Eliminate one movement, they'll just find another to latch on to. Or just kill people without bothering to come up with a reason. (Now, eliminating the movement is still a worthwhile goal, because it does contribute to the frequency of such events and causes plenty of other problems, but it's not a one-shot solution to the problem)

    What we need is gun control based on facts and reason, not politics. The Democrats will almost inevitably trot out another variant of the Assault Weapons Ban - a piece of legislation that was flawed in pretty much every way it is possible for a law to be flawed. All the AWB did was ban guns that looked scary. The points system counted things that do not matter - a pistol grip makes no significant difference towards a weapon's effectiveness, it's just more associated with modern military-derived weapons than with older or non-military weapons. And then, because there were still a bunch of major weapons not being covered by it, they specifically banned several guns - including a gun that was so badly-designed that it would actually be *better* for it to be in the hands of criminals rather than a better weapon, but because they had the gall to name it the "Street Sweeper" Congress just assumed it *had* to be dangerous and evil.

    Whether it's right or not, because of the sheer size of our gun industry and the absurd levels the issue has been politicized, we cannot do a comprehensive firearms ban. There's no way we could get a UK-style gun control system in place, even if that was the overall best system. That's one reality that anyone proposing solutions to this problem has to accept. (FWIW, my personal opinion is that while we definitely need to decrease the political power of the gunmaker's lobby, and the near-religious level some gun owners take it to is a serious problem, the goal should not be "eliminate guns" but rather "eliminate gun deaths", so a comprehensive ban is a non-preferable solution all else being equal)

    Any attempt at gun control should also address the quite-substantial but oft-overlooked suicide issue. The #1 risk factor for suicide isn't "depression" or "alcoholism" - it's "is there a gun present in the home?". And the total number of gun suicides in the US is twice the number of gun homicides. So if the goal is to actually help people, the solution should address suicides as well as homicides. And let's throw accidents into the mix as well, since those are also unreasonably high.

    There are very few new ideas in this world. A quick bit of research points us towards a good solution: look for first-world countries with high levels of gun ownership, and low levels of firearms casualties. Norway and Switzerland come to the forefront pretty quickly. Firearms homicides are literally one-in-a-million in Norway, 1/30th that of the United States, and yet they rank #10 in the world for gun ownership per capita. Switzerland has even higher levels of gun ownership (thanks in part to their "military reservists keep their weapons in their home" policy), and they too have notably low levels of gun-related deaths. So what are they doing right?

    Licensing. You have to register your weapons, you have to pass a test proving you know firearms safety and basic firearms law, and you can only buy ammunition that will work in a weapon you have registered.

    So with that in mind, this is the rough outline of the gun control law I would write, were I somehow in charge of writing bills:

    Certain weapons would need no license to own or operate. Any muzzleloader would automatically be in this class. Maybe word it as "loaded with loose black powder" if that covers edge cases better. My reasoning here is that you basically can't do a mass murder
    with these things. You'd get one shot off, and then in the minute it takes you to reload, either everyone's run away, or you've been dog-piled and neutralized as a threat.

    A Class I license would be needed for manually-operated long guns under 12mm in caliber (if rifled) or under 20mm in caliber (if unrifled - this is mainly for shotguns, and 10-gauge is just under 20mm). Anything from a Dreyse to a Mauser to a Winchester - bolt actions, lever actions, break actions, basically anything that isn't self-loading, under a certain size. A Class I license would require a basic weapons safety and weapons law test, making it about as hard to obtain as a driver's license. My reasoning here is that these are substantially harder to kill lots of people with - you could do a "sniper in the clock tower" thing, but that takes quite a bit of skill, and is still easily stopped. The licensing here is mainly to cut down on accidents, not crime, because there's not many armed robbers around wielding Mosin-Nagants.

    A Class II license would be needed for any self-loading non-automatic long guns in those same calibers. This would be a bit harder to obtain, adding a requirement for a background check and proof-of-ownership of a gun safe (to impede theft - sure, there's no reasonable way to force people to use a gun safe, but if you make them buy it, they're far more likely to use it. The main differences would be in obtaining and transferring weapons - while with Class I, you just need to register it when bought, with a Class II, you need to file whenever you sell it, even privately - mostly to make sure that whoever you're selling it to is actually licensed for it. My reasoning here is on making it hard for an unlicensed person to possess a Class II weapon, because this is the level where crimes get serious.

    A Class III license would cover any other long gun - rifles above 12mm caliber, or automatic rifles, as well as anything currently classed as a "destructive device", like an RPG. This would be about as hard to obtain as a Type 1 FFL is today, or perhaps slightly easier. After all, the NFA is a proven-effective piece of legislation - in the near-century since it started, there have been only two homicides with personally-owned automatic weapons, which is an acceptable amount. The license would be hard to obtain, easy to revoke, and would require on-site inspections every year or so to make sure they're being safely stored and haven't been stolen or lost.

    You'll notice one major class of weapon not covered by any of these: handguns. And the reason for that is twofold: first, handguns, being cheaper to make, are cheaper to buy, and thus the primary firearm used for suicides; second, concealed-carry permits are quite frankly retarded. The whole point is that you can't see them being carried - if someone owns a concealable weapon, it should be assumed that they will carry it concealed because there's no way to really stop them. So any license that includes handguns (let's call them Class I.A, II.A, and III.A) is implicitly a concealed-carry license. I think it would be justifiable to make these may-issue licenses instead of shall-issue, even for Class I.A, but there's not much evidence to go on here so I could be easily persuaded.

    The whole point of a licensing system, of course, is to make it possible to not license people who shouldn't be. Any felony would be grounds to revoke all licenses, of course. Dishonorable discharge from a military or police force would be automatic grounds to revoke a Class II or higher license. A court order should be able to temporarily revoke a license, on request of either law enforcement or a psychiatrist (with the intent of preventing homicides and suicides, respectively). But what to do with guns you are no longer allowed to own? Simple - escrow. A responsible party (let's say the local police for now) will take possession, but not ownership, of any firearms you legally owned but are now not licensed for. They can't do anything with it except store it, without the owner's say-so. If the owner decides to transfer or sell it to a licensed person, the police hand it over (after checking their license and politely reminding them that giving it to someone without a license is a crime). If they get their license back, they get all their guns back. If the owner orders it to be destroyed, it's destroyed, unless it's considered evidence. This should keep abuse of the license-revocation system to a minimum, because this makes it a hassle for the police instead of a potential profit source.

    Last point: weapons may be pushed to a lower class by whichever government body is responsible. So something that, by the above rules, would be Class II, but should intuitively be Class I, like the Ruger 10/22, can be reclassified on a case-by-case basis. Making it only possible to lower a classification, not raise it, should cut down on pointless political point-scoring while still allowing practical concerns to be addressed.

    There are a lot of things left to figure out. How do you grandfather in all the guns that already exist? Where do suppressors fit into this (since they're far over-regulated right now)? Where's the dividing line between handguns and long guns? This is obviously not a complete piece of legislation. Writing good laws is *hard*, and I don't want to spend a hundred pages on this. I wish I could make this even shorter, since it's far too long already. But my point is made. A law can be made based on evidence and reason that should be able to substantially reduce firearms-related death and injury, without unduly impeding the ability of regular, sane people to shoot guns recreationally.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 13 2016, @01:38AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 13 2016, @01:38AM (#359035)

      Not bad. Problem is, the first thing you need to do for that is a constitutional amendment to revoke the second amendment.

      • (Score: 2) by gman003 on Monday June 13 2016, @02:07AM

        by gman003 (4155) on Monday June 13 2016, @02:07AM (#359059)

        Not necessarily. (Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, and I am particularly not a Constitutional lawyer).

        The Second Amendment, taken literally, is absolute. You can bear arms - weapons, any weapons. A strict literal reading would say that citizens can own and use nuclear missiles. Which is patently absurd, which is why no current Supreme Court justice is a strict constructionist. I believe every right granted in the Bill of Rights has been given some sort of exception, save the Third, to avoid extreme cases. Direct threats are not protected by freedom of speech. Riots are not protected by freedom of assembly. Being near the border wipes away your protection from unreasonable search and seizure (which is IMO wrong but that's not what the courts have ruled).

        And so it is with the Second Amendment. The government may regulate the possession of arms. The federal government has regulations under Title I and Title II - this is why you can't buy an RPG-7 at Wal-Mart. You already need all manner of papers and to pay a lot more taxes than you really should in order to possess certain weapons. My proposal merely smooths out that curve - adding incremental amounts of licensing in order to reach further levels of firepower.

        Not to mention that a lot of state or local governments have restricted firearms, sometimes to ludicrous degrees (coughcoughcaliforniacough).

        • (Score: 2) by Anal Pumpernickel on Monday June 13 2016, @03:24AM

          by Anal Pumpernickel (776) on Monday June 13 2016, @03:24AM (#359102)

          The Second Amendment, taken literally, is absolute. You can bear arms - weapons, any weapons. A strict literal reading would say that citizens can own and use nuclear missiles.

          Yeah.

          Which is patently absurd

          If you feel that way, move to amend the constitution. Don't just ignore it.

          which is why no current Supreme Court justice is a strict constructionist.

          And nor are they friends to the concept of a limited government which follows the highest law of the land, as evidenced by countless authoritarian decisions.

          Keep in mind that there is a stark difference between what is actually constitutional and what the courts claim is constitutional.

          I believe every right granted in the Bill of Rights has been given some sort of exception

          Often in utter defiance of the constitution, mind you. The courts also approved of citizens of Japanese descent being put in internment camps, the jailing of war protesters, the existence of obscenity laws and other types of censorship. They have also been entirely ineffective thus far at putting a stop to blatantly unconstitutional surveillance practices. The courts are not exactly friends to liberty.

          My proposal merely smooths out that curve - adding incremental amounts of licensing in order to reach further levels of firepower.

          Your proposal would make an already bad situation even worse. But this sort of thinking seems common. If there is a long history of the government ignoring the constitution, we should try to correct that, not just allow them to violate it even more while ignoring what's happening. Either create an amendment or knock it off; simply interpreting the constitution in ways that are convenient for you so that the government can have more power is unacceptable.

          Not to mention that a lot of state or local governments have restricted firearms, sometimes to ludicrous degrees (coughcoughcaliforniacough).

          Which isn't constitutional either.

          • (Score: 2) by NotSanguine on Tuesday June 14 2016, @08:36AM

            I believe every right granted in the Bill of Rights has been given some sort of exception

            Often in utter defiance of the constitution, mind you. The courts also approved of citizens of Japanese descent being put in internment camps, the jailing of war protesters, the existence of obscenity laws and other types of censorship. They have also been entirely ineffective thus far at putting a stop to blatantly unconstitutional surveillance practices. The courts are not exactly friends to liberty.

            This is incorrect. The Supreme Court *decides* what is constitutional. This was decided in 1803 in via Marbury v. Madison [wikipedia.org].

            While this decision was not greeted warmly by many (Jefferson, notably, thought it very bad), there has been ample time to modify the court's power (in fact there have been seventeen amendments passed since that decision), yet this has not been done. Would you care to speculate as to why that's the case?

            As such, it's clear that the Supreme Court is the arbiter of what is constitutional in the United States. You may disagree with their decisions (I certainly have issue with a bunch!), but unless and until there is a constitutional amendment destroying the independent judiciary, that's the way it is.

            Despite the fact that I find fault with how some (if not many) cases are decided by the court, I am glad that we have an independent judiciary that is co-equal to the Legislative and Executive branches of our government.

            Feel free to disagree (I'm sure you will), but you'll just be tilting at windmills, friend.

            --
            No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 14 2016, @03:24PM

              by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 14 2016, @03:24PM (#359944)

              The Supreme Court *decides* what is constitutional.

              The US Supreme Court usurped for itself powers it had no authority to grant. It's no different than Congress with the War on Some Drugs: Congress "did its thing" (passed a law) and gave itself powers it had no authority to grant. It is no diffferent when the Supreme Court "did its thing" (wrote a brief on a case) and gave itself powers it had no authority to grant. It's a violation of law and literally criminal.

              I've written a couple [soylentnews.org] journals [soylentnews.org] on the topic in case you'd like a few more details (and I reference the logically-inconsistent Marbury decision, to boot).

              • (Score: 2) by NotSanguine on Tuesday June 14 2016, @04:32PM

                The US Supreme Court usurped for itself powers it had no authority to grant. It's no different than Congress with the War on Some Drugs: Congress "did its thing" (passed a law) and gave itself powers it had no authority to grant. It is no diffferent when the Supreme Court "did its thing" (wrote a brief on a case) and gave itself powers it had no authority to grant. It's a violation of law and literally criminal.

                I've written a couple journals on the topic in case you'd like a few more details (and I reference the logically-inconsistent Marbury decision, to boot).

                As I pointed out to Anal Pumpernickel, you're tilting at windmills friend.

                Regardless of what you think of Supreme Court decisions, or legislation duly passed by Congress and signed into law by the President, those are the rules that control our government.

                If you don't like it, you have several options:

                1. Elect to Congress and the Presidency, in large enough majorities, people who will pass laws that comport with your idea of good government;
                2. Propose, garner support for, and push through Congress and two-thirds of state legislatures the constitutional amendments reflecting the governmental structures you want;
                3. Propose, garner support for, and push through Congress an Article V [archives.gov] convention, and then push through the amendments (or new constitution) you'd like to see -- don't forget, this will still require passage by 2/3 of Congress and 2/3 of state legislatures;
                4. Promote and engage in peaceful civil disobedience to get the Federal government to do what you want it to do, promote and engage in armed rebellion against the Federal government, or both;
                5. Find another place to live which better reflects your preferred governmental structure.

                Perhaps there are other options as well.

                However, until such time as some or all of the above are successful, we have the governmental structure that we have.

                The government we have is the government we (as Americans) created and have modified over the past 229 years or so. I don't like many of the things that the Federal government does, nor do I condone many of the unethical and downright nasty things it's done to us and to citizens of other countries.

                I'd like to make things better for all of us. But claiming that Supreme Court rulings are "unconstitutional" or "criminal" isn't even wrong. It's meaningless prattle, devoid of semantic content.

                Some (or many or all) of those rulings may be (and have been -- Plessy v. Ferguson [wikipedia.org] and Korematsu v. United States [wikipedia.org] come to mind) antithetical to the ideals of liberty, equality under the law and just plain fairness. One might even go so far as to say they are unethical, unprincipled and possibly even evil.

                But to say that they are illegal or unconstitutional shows a lack of understanding of the governmental structures we, as a people, have placed over ourselves.

                You don't have to like it. You don't need to support it. And if it's too burdensome, you don't even need to live under such a government. The choice is yours.

                --
                No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
                • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 14 2016, @09:45PM

                  by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 14 2016, @09:45PM (#360189)

                  If you make the choice to believe that a verifiable falsehood is reality, I cannot (and will not try to) force you to change your mind. I can identify and define what appears to be literal insanity, albeit a comfortable state of mind considering the alternatives, in an attempt to shake you and others out of the despondant viewpoint which says "this new verifiable lie the Supreme Court emitted must now be considered by myself to be truth or else I'm a bad American/terrorist/rebel".

                  You seem not to have read my journals, as the meaning behind my use of the term "criminal" is plainly defined: when the authority of the individual is trespassed by an agent of government whose authority is a derivative of said individual's, that act is a crime. While the SCOTUS' mere act of declaring a lie to be truth is arguably not a criminal act in and of itself, it is not arguable that the lie will be imposed upon others at gunpoint by agents of government using the SCOTUS' lie as the justification for such criminal acts in the Nuremberg flavor of "just following orders".

                  • (Score: 2) by NotSanguine on Tuesday June 14 2016, @10:16PM

                    If you make the choice to believe that a verifiable falsehood is reality, I cannot (and will not try to) force you to change your mind. I can identify and define what appears to be literal insanity, albeit a comfortable state of mind considering the alternatives, in an attempt to shake you and others out of the despondant viewpoint which says "this new verifiable lie the Supreme Court emitted must now be considered by myself to be truth or else I'm a bad American/terrorist/rebel".

                    I didn't say that Supreme Court rulings were "the truth." I said that they were the law of the land and, in a bunch of cases, unethical, unprincipled and possibly evil.

                    Nor did I even insinuate that disagreeing with the Supreme Court made you (or anyone else for that matter) a "bad American/terrorist/rebel."

                    You seem not to have read my journals, as the meaning behind my use of the term "criminal" is plainly defined: when the authority of the individual is trespassed by an agent of government whose authority is a derivative of said individual's, that act is a crime.

                    I did read the journal entry you linked and found it puerile and rather unconvincing.

                    There are many things that the Federal government does that I find to be unconscionable and downright disgusting.

                    The question is, "What are we going to do about it?" Are there options other than that which I suggested that you'd like to see attempted?

                    --
                    No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
                    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 14 2016, @10:53PM

                      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 14 2016, @10:53PM (#360225)

                      There were two linked journal entries, and aside from the directness and simplicity, what particular aspect(s) do you find to be silly, childish, or trivial?

                      My goal with the journals and my comments here is to resolve the contradiction of "law is what government says it is" with a government/law that is self-contradictory, easily seen in Dred Scott vs Sandford and also in the very existence of laws restricting possession of weapons within the same government which pays lip service to the Second Amendment.

                      The question of "what to do about [a criminal/evil] government" is another matter entirely. What people have done about criminal/evil laws is a matter of historical record: many ignored them (e.g. the Underground Railroad, First Prohibition, the Battle of Athens [jpfo.org], and the ongoing Battle of Bunkerville [thenationalpatriot.com] saga). For myself, I look at each claimed law that passes into my awareness and judge its validity according to the principles I wrote about in those two journal entries. I believe this is my responsibility and duty as an USian, rather putting any further effort into the futile and wholly corrupt existing federal political process (they may yet be some hope at the local level). I choose not to be a criminal, nor to support other criminals, and to treat everyone else I come across as equal or better than my own self by default. A random sampling of people who have met me will produce a positive picture of a person, with likely notable comments on my "strange" views that came up in conversation when it seemed appropriate and of interest to them according to my (hopefully correct) judgement. Naturally, when the US federal government gets around to prosecuting me, the indictment is going to be pages long, calling me a horrible crook who must spend decades if not centuries locked away in a cage.

                      • (Score: 2) by NotSanguine on Wednesday June 15 2016, @12:32AM

                        I look at each claimed law that passes into my awareness and judge its validity according to the principles I wrote about in those two journal entries.

                        So you've chosen option 4:

                        Promote and engage in peaceful civil disobedience to get the Federal government to do what you want it to do, promote and engage in armed rebellion against the Federal government, or both;

                        A valid choice. Good for you. It's certainly better than doing nothing.

                        --
                        No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
                        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 15 2016, @01:06AM

                          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 15 2016, @01:06AM (#360303)

                          A valid choice [, civil disobedience].

                          No. When I disregard a law as Constitutionally-void and break it (while harming no one, mind you), that is not "civil disobedience". It is exactly the same in principle as disregarding an order from MS-13 to carry large amounts of cash everywhere I go while forbidding me from being armed: an order by criminals with no principle behind it other than the naked use of force. When a person is killed by government agents over a legally-void law, that killing is a murder no different in principle than any other intentional taking of human life outside of self-defense. Criminals are criminals no matter the costume they may wear and are deserving of equal treatment when they confront you.

                          "Civil disobedience" recognizes the law in question as valid yet objectionable. Most of the federal government's so-called laws are in fact not valid law at all. A law's maximum authority is limited to that of a single human being's, since the supreme law of the USA's is a mere derivative of said individual's authority: it cannot exceed the authority of its source. Laws that attempt to do so are unconstitutional by definition. (Else, I could start a kidnapping gang, and at some arbitary threshhold become lawful once I had enough members/supporters.) An unconstitutional act is not law; it has no legal power, it justifies no government action, and it was invalid as law the very moment it was "passed".

                          If you've read my journals, that last bit may seem familiar to you in regards to Norton vs Shelby County's recognition (not establishment of) of that same principle.

            • (Score: 2) by Anal Pumpernickel on Tuesday June 14 2016, @06:55PM

              by Anal Pumpernickel (776) on Tuesday June 14 2016, @06:55PM (#360084)

              This is incorrect. The Supreme Court *decides* what is constitutional.

              What the legal system says is true and what is actually true in reality are different matters. If the Supreme Court was always correct, then how could previous decisions ever be overridden, aside from a situation where the constitution has changed between the rulings? Did reality magically change in that time? So what you're talking about clearly only applies to the legal system. This is because there is a need to have someone decide matters at the end of the day, not because those people are always correct. When they are wrong, we must attempt to correct the issue.

              You may disagree with their decisions (I certainly have issue with a bunch!)

              Well, that's what I was doing. I'm not opposed to the courts ruling on constitutional matters, but I simply disagree with many of the decisions they have made. These terrible rulings need to be fixed, one way or another.

              • (Score: 2) by NotSanguine on Tuesday June 14 2016, @08:00PM

                What the legal system says is true and what is actually true in reality are different matters.

                I never said anything about "truth." I specifically said "constitutional." What is legal/constitutional does not necessarily coincide with what's true or right. Until the passage of the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Amendments, it was "legal" in the United States to own other human beings. In fact, it was enshrined in the original text of the Constitution. This was clearly not right, nor is it "true" in an ethical sense. However, it was the law of the land.

                If the Supreme Court was always correct, then how could previous decisions ever be overridden, aside from a situation where the constitution has changed between the rulings? Did reality magically change in that time? So what you're talking about clearly only applies to the legal system. This is because there is a need to have someone decide matters at the end of the day, not because those people are always correct. When they are wrong, we must attempt to correct the issue.

                [...]

                Well, that's what I was doing. I'm not opposed to the courts ruling on constitutional matters, but I simply disagree with many of the decisions they have made. These terrible rulings need to be fixed, one way or another.

                I don't take any issue with your analysis or the sentiment behind it.

                Please see my response to an AC [soylentnews.org] above.

                --
                No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
        • (Score: 3, Interesting) by deimtee on Monday June 13 2016, @03:45AM

          by deimtee (3272) on Monday June 13 2016, @03:45AM (#359115) Journal

          The anti-gunners need to take a cue from jiu-jitsu and let the second amendment collapse under its own weight. They should argue that it is literally correct. There are no limits on who can own weapons, or what weapons they can own, or where they can take them.
          Go shopping with a shotgun. Start turning up to PTA meetings carrying an SMG wearing a bandolier full of grenades. Mount a homemade cannon on the back of the pickup or the roof of the SUV. Convert an AR15 into fully automatic and stand on their second amendment rights. Use a flamethrower to clear weeds in the front yard and light the BBQ.

          Then agitate for a constitutional amendment.

          --
          If you cough while drinking cheap red wine it really cleans out your sinuses.
          • (Score: 2) by Phoenix666 on Monday June 13 2016, @04:17PM

            by Phoenix666 (552) on Monday June 13 2016, @04:17PM (#359407) Journal

            Thank you, I will.

            I would like a world where weapons are unnecessary. Communities that feel secure in their rights don't feel the need to carry weapons. Many Europeans now, for example, are content to live without guns because they know they can get most of what they want with a well-attended strike.

            That is not true in the United States. We know on some visceral, genetic level, that the only guarantee of freedom we have is our weaponry and willingness to strike back at overbearing government.

            Bureaucrats, politicians, elected members of office, should perennially rest assured that if they abuse the powers of their offices too much, then angry citizens will hunt them down. We are at that point now, and only all await the appropriate spark.

            Note: I am not a gun-totin' conservative, but a progressive.

            --
            Washington DC delenda est.
        • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Monday June 13 2016, @03:50PM

          by tangomargarine (667) on Monday June 13 2016, @03:50PM (#359399)

          A strict literal reading would say that citizens can own and use nuclear missiles.

          Strictly literally speaking, "to bear" means "to carry." So unless you have a nuclear missile you can lift yourself...

          So talking man-portable weapons clears up this whole silly argument. Oh wait, I suppose you can easily carry a vial of smallpox...hmm.

          --
          "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 14 2016, @03:17AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 14 2016, @03:17AM (#359726)

            Strictly literally speaking

            Er, no. Using that interpretation, there would be no right to actually use the weapons for anything at all, since the 2nd amendment only speaks of keeping and bearing arms. If that was the case, why even bother mentioning such a worthless right?

            Words have multiple meanings. Clearly, "to bear" means something more than "to carry" here.

        • (Score: 1) by BenFenner on Tuesday June 14 2016, @05:24PM

          by BenFenner (4171) on Tuesday June 14 2016, @05:24PM (#360023)

          The Second Amendment, taken literally, is absolute. You can bear arms - weapons, any weapons. A strict literal reading would say that citizens can own and use nuclear missiles.

          This is incorrect. The 2nd amendment, taken literally, is absolute. I will give you that. However, you can bear "arms", which is not the same as "weapons". In the context in which the second amendment was written, there were two types of weapons. "Arms" and "ordinance". Arms are smaller weapons able to be carried by a single person over a reasonable distance in battle and the like. Ordinance describes larger pieces of weapons equipment carried by horses at the time (think cannons) or assembled on site after being carried by mules (think mountain guns) and as technology has moved on it now includes tanks, planes, and your aforementioned nuclear missiles. The 2nd amendment does not provide US citizens the rights to bear these ordinances.

          Reasonably carry and operate on your own? Arms.
          Larger weapon system? Ordinance.

          • (Score: 2) by gman003 on Tuesday June 14 2016, @07:06PM

            by gman003 (4155) on Tuesday June 14 2016, @07:06PM (#360091)

            I highly doubt that is correct.

            The earliest attestations of "ordnance" (or "ordinance", as it was originally) in a martial context have it meaning "anything a military needs to operate", including weapons of all types, ammunition, clothing, and food. Its current meaning focuses more on weapons and ammunition, particularly for the artillery, but even today you can refer to a carbine as "ordnance" and be correct (otherwise, the term "heavy ordnance" would be meaninglessly repetitive, because all ordnance would be heavy). It would be improbable for a word to condense in meaning to an extremely strict subset, and then relax back to more-or-less the original meaning. Particularly in only six centuries.

            The same holds true for "arms". You can trace that back to Latin and still get a meaning that covered everything from "swords" to "catapults" (the main difference in meaning is that Latin "arma" included armor as well as weapons, with the two distinguished as "arma noctiva" and "arma defensiva"). We've dropped "defensive arms" from the meaning but "arms" still refers to any weapon.

    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by nekomata on Monday June 13 2016, @02:05PM

      by nekomata (5432) on Monday June 13 2016, @02:05PM (#359358)

      Licensing. You have to register your weapons, you have to pass a test proving you know firearms safety and basic firearms law, and you can only buy ammunition that will work in a weapon you have registered.

      Sorry mate, not true. Getting a gun in Switzerland is absolutely freaking simple.

      1. Show you don't have any police record. Especially nothing drug or violence related (some other stuff might pass, idk)
      2. Take you clean police record and a form to the local police station
      3. They will, after some other checks (like if you have 100 speeding tickets or so) give you a WES (Waffen Erwerbs Schein, ~weapon purchase permit)

      With your WES you can now go and buy up to three guns. You however do not register the ownership of your gun! You only need to show you are allowed to buy it.

      No permit is needed for bolt-actions and the like (where you reload after every shot)
      Special permit is needed for: carrying (almost impossible to get), full-auto weapons (need to be a collector) and silencers (collector too? idk).

      So your assumtion that it has anything to do with HOW you get the guns here is wrong. I would personally assume it's a combination of culture and well-being. But I havn't given it that much tought since I can't compare the state here to the state in USA (never been there).

      • (Score: 2) by gman003 on Monday June 13 2016, @06:44PM

        by gman003 (4155) on Monday June 13 2016, @06:44PM (#359510)

        I did not solely base my proposal on Swiss gun law. I used elements of it, such as the lack of/looser restrictions on certain types of weapon, as well as elements of Norwegian gun law and elements I thought would be necessary to adapt it to American culture and American legal doctrine.

        There is significant merit to the Swiss system (as evidenced by the facts), and I would be quite willing to incorporate more elements of it into this proposal. Or hell, even just adopting it outright would be better than the system we have now, even though it doesn't address problems like America's abnormally high gun-accident rate or gun-suicide rate.

  • (Score: 2) by Tork on Monday June 13 2016, @01:32AM

    by Tork (3914) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 13 2016, @01:32AM (#359027)
    What, you don't agree that blaming and acting against a religion that has 3 million followers in the US will result in fewer tragedies? /s
    --
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