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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That's interesing Joan

The Texas Tower Shooter.

There are other interesting subjects

Kip Kinkle for example.

Please take the time to look at the link.

There are  several aspects to this subject: The Constitution says we are allowed to have weapons.  If we take this right away, then what will be the next right to lose?

Freedom of speech?  The freedom of religion? Once you eliminate one Amendment, it will be easier to take away the rest of them.

In spite of what it seems, the murder rate in the U.S. has gone down steadily since about 1990.  In fact, the rates of all violent crimes have gone down since then.  (Just a side note..isn't it interesting that the violent crime rate started dropping about 18 years after Roe v. Wade?)

Here is another interesting fact:  they include suicides in the murder rate.  Suicide accounts for about two thirds of the murders in this country.

I think it was in this thread that someone mentioned the knife attacks in a chinese school on the same day as our Sandy Hook muders.  A response to that was that none of those children died.  Go to google, and enter "knife attacks in China".  It seems to be more rampant than our mass shootings, and with more deaths.

Now, if we take guns and knives away from the mentally deranged, we can always go to Timothy McVeigh for inspiration.  He used a home made bomb with fertilizer and killed almost two hundred people (including a whole bunch of clhildren) in Oklahoma City.  He did that all by himself. 

Folks, we have some evil people in this world.  We can't know who they are ahead of time, and even if we did, we can't do anythhing about it until they do something bad.  We could put them on a list to prevent them from buying a gun, but then how are we going to prevent them from stealing one?  And if you could, then they would go to knives as we've seen in China. 

Now, with ISIS growing in numbers, and spreading their murders around the world, i.e. San Bernardino among others, I'm all for keeping my weapons.

And for you who want to control guns......Don't say it too loud.  You're selling more guns every time you open your mouths.  President Obama must own stock in a weapons company.  Every time he says, "gun control" the sales of guns goes up by the thousands the next day.  One of the local gun stores said that Obama is the best salesman they've ever had, and he's not even on their paryoll.

Just sayin'.

It's hard for me to believe that we have a right as citzens to own every gun that ever came along, and that almost anybody could buy the weapon of choice without a good background check. Right now that's all that's being asked for, and they might limit the sale of certain guns, or eliminate them entirely. Fine.

Too many people want to go into that "come and get it" style of thinking involving guns and prying them out of your cold dead hands. I don't see this happening, don't see Obama or others doing it, and don't think it's coming soon. How in the hell would they enforce that?

I'm also ex-military, trained in weaponery and demolition.

It's hard for me to believe that we have a right as citzens to own every gun that ever came along, and....

Michael, the most bizarre guy on SCOTUS (who but Scalia?) wrote the Heller ruling and in it said we do not have a right to own every gun that ever came along. SCOTUS rulings are not easy reading but you'll find it if you google "scotus heller".

Michael, The man who shot Representative Gabrielle Gifford bought his gun just a few weeks before he shot her, and he passed a background check when he bought his weapon.  The recent shootings in San Bernardino were accomplished with weapons that had been given to the assailants by a friend, who had recently bought them, and had passed a background check. 

I also grew up with guns, though high powered guns are banned here from public sale, but there is still a black market for such weapons, but if you can afford them, you wouldn't need to be a criminal. 

Though the most powerful gun I've been hunting with was a ex WW1 .303 Lee Enfield bolt action which I borrowed for weekend hunting as an army cadet, with the pretence that I was doing drill training, surely the warrant officer could smell that the gun had been recently fired, a mate supplied the ammo.  Though some of the .22 ammo we had were hollow points, I didn't use them, because they lose range, I preferred accuracy and range.

We had a few .22 rifles and a 12 gauge shotgun, one of the .22s was a semi-automatic, but I never found any use for the automatic setting.

Though we had a prowler checking our windows and doors one night and I sat waiting for him with the semi-automatic, as he tried and open the back door as the knob was being wobbled and it appeared that he was trying to force it. I knew who it was as he was trying to date my sister and he was a firearm nutjob, who would sit down the street pretending he was shooting people.  This behaviour freaked my sister out, so I warned him that if he didn't stop harassing my sister, I was going to bash him to a pulp.

I think that if he had made it through out doorway, as he was a very nasty individual and likely had a gun, he'd be dead, because I never missed a target in those days, no matter how fast he tried to move, I would shoot rats running along the rails of the hen house, and not waste a bullet, which is why I never had a use for the automatic setting.

I was 18 at the time and enjoyed hunting vermin, but I stopped enjoying it when the others I went night shooting with (spotlighting) killed a goanna and shot a farmer's bull.  I would only shoot rabbits and foxes, not native nor domestic animals, they sickened me so I stopped shooting and associating with them.

I really don't think gun laws and ownership has anything whatsoever to do with atheism.

I had a dislike for vermin, because they don't belong in Australia and are ruining the environment for our native animals, and that includes cats and wild dogs.

I will shoot feral cats on sight, they are the biggest danger to native animals in the bush, as they are efficient hunters of native lizards, birds and small mammals.

What is a goanna? 

goanna. : any of several large Australian monitor lizards (genus Varanus of the family Varanidae)

Daniel this isn't my reply to your constitutional argument, but was one of the letters published that anticipated that line of thought.

A nation's sad, brutal obsession with guns, Jan. 9

After watching U.S. President Barack Obama’s emotional and poignant speech announcing new executive actions to strengthen weak U.S. gun laws, a couple of thoughts came to mind.

First, Obama mentioned the well known fact that there are more than 30,000 gun deaths a year in the United States. Given this horrid statistic, I’ve often wondered why the National Rifle Association isn’t considered a terrorist organization. After all, their advocacy for firearms and their attempts to weaken gun laws have certainly helped fuel the relentless inferno of gun violence in the U.S.

Secondly, why can’t the Second Amendment be changed? The right to bear arms was placed in the U.S.constitution when the fledgling nation was threatened by the British Empire. But it’s 2016, not 1787.

As we know in Canada, constitutions aren’t written in stone. Many countries alter their constitutions to adapt to an ever-changing world. But the U.S. seems to abhor the idea of change, whether it’s refusing to move to the metric system, clinging to paper money, or treating a constitution written in the wake of a revolution nearly 250 years ago as if it was handed down direct from God, carved in granite and never to be altered, on pain of eternal damnation.

It’s well past time for a constitutional change. Gun violence is an epidemic in America, and only a major rethink can stop the carnage.

Andrew van Velzen, Toronto

Russell, your exaggerations above disqualify your thoughts for serious consideration. I won't answer all of them; you know what they are.

1. The National Rifle Association is not considered a terrorist organization because it uses lawful means to defend their position. Some of its views have in the recent past been criticized by fact checker organizations.

2. "...have certainly helped fuel the relentless inferno...."

Where did you get that definition for the word "fuel"?

3. The Second Amendment can be amended, but neither Congress nor the state legislatures have begun the process for doing so.

4. [The US is] refusing to move to the metric system, ....

Untrue. Twenty years ago I was tutoring high school kids who were failing in the regular math courses and their text books taught both systems.

Quit your exaggerating, Russell.

Also, most of our new machinery, and autos, are built with metric sized bolts and nuts. We're getting there.

Third down and 1.24 meters to go.


I added another voice to this discussion from a selection of the letters published in the paper. I indicated that it wasn't me speaking and included the name. With one letter I did say I liked the arguments so you can criticize me and my acceptance of the points, with this one you are referring to I said that "this isn't my reply to your constitutional argument". You can't say to me these are my exaggerations. I never said them, someone else did. You can't say I uncritically passed on this letter so I agree with everything that was said.  I can pass on a letter and not say if I like it or not and it does not mean I agree with everything that is said.  Most of the voices in this thread are American and most of the voices accept the "right to bear arms". I wanted to include some Canadian voices. When I totally agree with those voices, I will let you know. I do not feel hostile to anyone with this discussion - just frustrated. It is always nice to inject a bit of humor - so I will answer your jest that Americans are arming themselves to invade Canada. It will never happen because then Americans on holiday in other countries can't pretend to be Canadians.  (nobody ever said I was a good comedian)




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