Atheists are a small minority in the U.S.  Advocates of gun control might be a minority in America as well. In light of the recent shootings in Aurora I am curious as to how atheists in this network view the lack of gun restrictions.  There are probably divergent views.

I have trouble believing that both presidential candidates are steering away from any call for reform after the horrific mass shooting. In my opinion it is insane to allow citizens access to assault weapons that can kill scores of people in a few minutes.  It was even more shocking to hear on a news show that a family had to raise money to pay for the immense hospital bills for one of the victims while they were already crippled with medical bills from the mothers fight with breast cancer.

As a Canadian I came to stand with my U.S brothers for the reason rally and freedom from religion.  I would be willing to come down to the capitol and march for two other important causes.  Gun control and universal health care.

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Tom, as usual, I confess to being naive. I also am a dreamer thinking of the kind of world I would like to inhabit. Foolish? Yes! Useless? I don't think so, at least I have a vision of what Homo sapiens can do that is at a higher level than other primates besides being able to invent and use atomic weapons and every other device created by humans.

I like you giving me a reality check now and then.

Using the term, "collective capitalist." sounds good to me. I'll try it on to see how it fits me. Yes, I like the feel of the term.

I am decidedly an entrepreneur. I also do not want to gain wealth by the efforts of others. Exploitation is a dirty word for me. I like the idea of working with others to make a living that is comfortable for each one.

I abhor those who exploit the slave labor of other countries even though I benefit greatly from those who work for $2.00 a day so that I can buy their products cheaply.

My utopian dreaming again, I look for the day when people who produce goods and services share in the profits generated. My regret is that I will die before that happens.

Joan. There are happier places in the world. So it is not foolish for you to dream of a better life in your country.

Catholic Ireland????

The majority of those countries are less religious in politics than the U.S.

Haven't you heard the one about the Irishman asking the newcomer if he was Catholic or Protestant. The man replied he was an atheist. So the Irishman said - yes but are you a Catholic atheist or a Protestant atheist.

John: The atomic bomb was a stretch. Shouldn't have used it - but I used it with every country being armed to achieve an end, not every person having an atomic bomb -  the way you took it.

My points were not intended as an attack - it was a discussion. Sometimes tone is lost with typed words versus direct conversation. I didn't think any of my other examples were absurd.

So we agree on violence used on our behalf by a police force being necessary, some form of gun control and using reason in the discussion.

i think we might disagree on how significant a crises the current gun situation is in the U.S. i think it is a problem that could or should be addressed better than it has been so far.

The point of this discussion never has been about gun violence used by the authorities. It was more about highly lethal weapons being easily accessible to the general population and how that has given the U.S. a grossly inflated murder, suicide, accidental gun death rate compared to other developed countries..

I guess I was confused by your point "My point here was to express disgust with those who take a moral high road in the argument when in essence they are just as guilty of gun based violence as anyone the only difference ethically being who pulled the trigger. "

I never saw that happening in this discussion - or never realized it happened in this discussion - unless you could point it out to me when it did occur.

Otherwise I'm glad we have some common ground and would like to politely disagree when we do not.

Manufacturing lethal weapons (from nuclear devices on down to Saturday night specials) is one of the most profitable ventures in the entire history of humankind. That's the bedrock reality beneath all the debates.

John, you have written a very informative explanation of the views on guns from both sides. I completely agree with it. You're absolutely correct that we have devolved into a screaming match. But on the matter of assault weapons alone would a ban reduce the number of deaths by guns ??

Nobody wants a screaming match with the gun issue. They want reasoned study. I still don't understand why congress is preventing the CDC from looking at this issue with scientific reasoned study. A lot of us did not like to be told to wear seat-belts many years ago. I remember not liking it and being forced to because of fines twenty years ago. I also remember that ten years ago wearing a seat-belt saved my life.

There are the high profile Orlando semi assault rifle cases. There are also many other murders, accidents, suicides etc that don't get headlines but greatly distinguish the U.S. from other countries with firearm deaths.

What is wrong with this argument asking for detailed study?

John, you have answered my question very well. And I am in complete agreement with the rest of your points. I know politicians and the media use faulty statistics for votes and ratings. Which makes it difficult for those of us who try and find an answer and are met with endless amounts of contradictory information.
A ban on assault weapons may help eliminate the number of people killed during mass shootings and I'm in favor of that.
Thanks for your reply.

I disagree! Guns have no place in civilized society. We are no longer hunter/gatherer people. We Live in houses someone else built, eat food someones else grows, drink water someone else engineered, we drive cars someone else built, we work at jobs someone else creates, and when someone is sick, someone else takes care of us.

For what purpose do we need guns?

Yes, there are people who like to hunt or target practice; for what is an automatic gun needed to do those things. Some want to have big trucks with gun racks in the back window; now why is that? Does it have anything to do with being a man? Or a woman with an appetite for big guns?

Joan, most Americans are civilized.

A few are not and many of them use guns to commit crimes.

Do you want them to be the only people with guns?

In America, one of the world’s most violent nations?

I am so glad I live in Canada with better handling of gun control. We could still do a lot better - there was that Mosque shooting in Quebec and recent mentally unstable individual shooting in Toronto. There is a conversation going on here about stiffening up our gun laws even more. It doesn't help that we border a country that has laughable control over weapons and people smuggle guns over the border that is used in gang warfare.  Maybe we need a wall.

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