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New Gun Laws and Gun Control for Gun Owners of America

Updated on June 20, 2015

I wrote this open letter to US gun owners in March, 2013. Since then, the issue has continued to appear sporadically in international news coverage.

Meanwhile, more than two years later, my husband and I continue to own and use guns here in Australia ... despite many Americans believing our country has banned them outright.


My husband's Glock

My husband's Glock with a trigger lock.
My husband's Glock with a trigger lock. | Source

An open letter to gun owners of America

Dear US Gun Owners,

I understand that you are concerned about the prospect of new gun laws in the USA. When new gun legislation was being introduced in Australia, local gun owners had the same fears that they'd no longer be allowed to keep their guns.

What effect new Federal gun laws may have on State gun laws in the future is no doubt causing you concern. I understand that gun ownership is a right under the 2nd Amendment to the American Constitution. Australian gun owners did not have that argument when protesting against new gun laws in our country.

But despite the gun law changes in this country, responsible gun owners still own guns in Australia. I am one of them.

In Australia, you need a good reason to own a pistol. My husband and I are sporting shooters, so we were approved for the appropriate license. Very recently I decided I'm no longer interested in attending competitions, so I sold my pistol and soon my pistol license will lapse. My husband still has his Glock.

We are licensed to shoot longarms like rifles and shotguns, and will retain those licenses.

At this time when US gun owners are facing new firearms laws, I'd like to share a few quiet thoughts with you.

This is just a quiet conversation, nothing more. I have written a separate article giving my hints for US gun owners preparing for new gun laws, and a link to that article is at the bottom of the page. Meanwhile, I'd just like to share a few of my general thoughts and questions, and I invite you to do the same. :)


New gun laws

Will new US gun laws prohibit all Americans from owning guns? Hard to imagine!
Will new US gun laws prohibit all Americans from owning guns? Hard to imagine! | Source

Which gun owners will new gun laws target?

My husband and I now live off the grid in a small home powered by solar panels. We collect our own water and store it in tanks. We grow our own food and yes, we are organic farmers. We have chickens and pigs and are considering getting a cow.

Does that make us greenies? We certainly live a green lifestyle.

Are we survivalists? We are relieved to be surviving the global economic crash. We can feed ourselves, warm ourselves, and could probably cope quite comfortably for years without needing to access a store if necessary. We already produce sufficient food to feed others as well, and could increase production to feed more people if needed, simply by using cuttings from our fruit trees and seeds from our existing vegetable plants to extend our gardens.

We live just as comfortably now as we did when we lived in the city. There's no doubt we have a different lifestyle to other periods in our lives, but if you attribute comfort to a full belly, good health, warmth in winter and a way to cool down in summer, we are very comfortable. We are active, healthy, love lots and laugh every day.

Do guns play a part in our sustainable lifestyle? Yes, they do.

Living off the grid as we do, and aiming for a sustainable lifestyle, it is helpful to be able to shoot rabbits. Rabbits and hares are introduced species that reproduce to plague proportions if left unchecked. Many people poison rabbits with baits. We don't. We would much rather kill them with a single bullet than make them suffer a painful death from poison, and risk poisoning other wildlife in the process.

Most of our vegetable gardens are appropriately fenced, so killing rabbits is not about protecting the vegetables. It is, however, about protecting the natural ecosystem. We have kangaroos and wallabies in our yard some evenings. They mostly stay in the hundred plus acres of natural forest adjoining our home, but when they venture onto our property we don't shoot them. It was their land first.

Rabbits compete with kangaroos, wallabies and other native wildlife so I happily shoot rabbits. We eat them, our dog eats them, or we bury them in the earth when planting new fruit trees. Dead rabbits don't go to waste here. I am even thinking of learning how to make a rabbit fur jacket. It would be a logical expansion to our self-sustainable lifestyle.

Foxes and rats are also considered vermin in Australia. We don't have rats where we live so I've never tried to shoot one, but foxes kill native wildlife and farmers' small animals. I consider them fair game, but we've not had a fox problem yet where we live.

Gun control in this country does not stop farmers or hunters or sporting shooters from possessing firearms. If we follow the rules we can still own a gun.

New firearms laws did, however, make it illegal for paranoid people to stockpile guns and ammunition in their basements or under their beds in case there was some kind of revolution or invasion that would require them to protect their piles of canned food.

I'm sure it didn't deter all of them. At least some would have joined a gun club, become a sporting shooter, undertaken safety training and, hopefully, learned to aim effectively and safely shoot their target in the process.

Which US gun owners will new gun laws target? My guess would be, at the top of the list, the kind of gun owners that responsible US citizens would like to see stripped of their guns. Prison inmates freshly released from prison. Paranoid schizophrenics. Gang members carrying out drive-by shootings. If you're a gun owner, perhaps you should be compiling your own list and sending a copy to President Obama and other politicians.

It seems reasonable to expect that people who know they would fail the most basic security screening will be among the noisiest objectors to new gun legislation. If you have been convicted of gun crimes and fear being denied the chance to buy guns from a local store, I understand why you are vocal about gun law changes and gun control.

For those of us who don't approve of armed hold-ups and shooting in the streets, there are definite advantages to having new gun legislation that enables police to arrest convicted offenders of violent crimes for simply possessing an illegal gun, instead of having to wait until they are caught in the act of offending again.

I am sure there are many law-abiding Americans who would welcome gun control.

What a shame if those who will be excluded from gun ownership for valid reasons manage to influence public opinion to their own advantage, and generate sufficient public outcry to negate the calls for gun control.

This could be a significant turning point for the future of the US. Or it may just be the beginning of another long run of violent gun-related crimes. I'm just an observer of life in the USA, not a regular participant. If I was an American citizen right now, I would actively be campaigning President Obama and other politicians to make new US gun laws fair and reasonable.

A referendum would be the best test for public opinion regarding gun control, but results are always influenced to some degree by the wording of referendum questions. If President Obama is considering a referendum, now would be the time for people to make suggestions about appropriate wording.


How US gun owners can prepare for new gun laws

After police came to my home to check my registered firearms, I wrote an article titled 'How US gun owners can prepare for new gun laws'. You'll find a link to it when you reach the bottom of this page.

It contains a few top tips and suggestions based on my experience.

Guns for self defense

If new gun laws suggested by President Obama are likely to strip you of the firearms you treasure most and make you feel vulnerable in your home, it is time to start rethinking your lifestyle choices, tightening other forms of security at your home and, if necessary, planning to move to a safer community where you don't feel so vulnerable.

I lived in bustling cities for many years here and overseas but I now live in a peaceful, rural area. Living in an area where you don't feel safe can't be good for your health. If you've been thinking about making a move, this might be best the time.

If new gun regulations suddenly mean that your guns are illegal, and if you fail to register as a gun owner when new gun legislation is introduced, you won't have the option of shooting someone in self defense. Just being an unlicensed gun owner with an unregistered firearm may well be enough to put behind bars.

There are many issues you'll need to think through. New gun laws inspire other changes. One of them is making your home safer.

One night after midnight, when living in the city, I entered my dark kitchen to a shaft of light spilling across the kitchen floor from what should have been a sealed side of the room. A potential intruder had his arm through a small hatch where milk deliveries were traditionally left, and was reaching for the key in the door to let himself in.

Did I shoot him? No. I smashed the small hatch door onto his arm while I removed the key from the lock. He retreated and I decided to live smarter. Without that close encounter, perhaps I would never have become conscious about the dangers we face every day and night, and changed my behavior accordingly.

I sealed the hatch properly so it could never be opened, and stopped leaving keys inside locks at night. In the years since that night, I have moved home many times but always take the same kind of precautions to deter intruders.

When visiting different parts of the US, I have been particularly surprised by just how many people choose to live their lives in full view of people walking down the street.

Have you ever walked outside at night and taken a look at your own home? How alarmed will you feel if you suddenly discover that your teenage daughter relaxing in brief shorts and a skimpy top at the dinner table is in full view of any crazy person who happens to be passing by your home?

With or without new firearms laws, all gun owners could reduce the likelihood of ever needing to shoot an intruder by actively making their home safer.


Christian Philosophy and Gun Ownership

I travel a lot and during two of my visits while in the US I was in places where guns were fired on the street, causing me to take shelter and wait for the drama to pass. Whenever that happens, I find myself thankful for my home in Australia and our tighter gun control legislation.

American church-goers include a lot of American gun-owners. I don't know what percentage of America's gun-owners call themselves Christians, but I'm guessing there's a fair percentage.

I know quite a few Christian sporting shooters in Australia. They go to church on Sunday morning and head off to the gun club for a few rounds on a Sunday afternoon.

But they don't keep guns with the intention of shooting anyone, and they don't leave guns lying around unattended for fear a child might accidentally kill themselves, a young friend, or a parent when they mistakenly assume they can fire a real gun just like a toy gun.

A few devout Christian gun owners have said to me that if they had to make a choice between an intruder killing them, or using one of their guns to kill the intruder, they wouldn't even bother unlocking their gun safe. They'd take the bullet. I confess I don't understand that, particularly if there were children in the home.

However, their Christian belief is that they shouldn't take another's life. They say they'd rather die and go to Heaven than kill someone so they could continue their journey through this life, only to be condemned for it when they eventually pass over.

I have argued with a few Christian gun owners about this very point in the past. As a parent, I consider protecting my children to be my first and foremost consideration. If someone threatened the life of a child, particularly my child, I believe I would do whatever it takes to protect them. I would not like to end someone's life, but if I honestly had no other option, who knows.

The message I have been given, repeatedly, during conversations with Christian gun owners is that Christians must put their faith in God; that prayer is the answer to everything; that God doesn't need a gun to protect the faithful; and that standing firm and trusting in God is the only course of action they would follow. They believe that lost loved ones are going to a better place, so the manner of their death holds little consequence. All will be made right when they reach the other side.

Because humans are made in the image of God, I was told, killing a human is nothing like killing any other type of animal. If that's true for the Christians I have had personal discussions with, why doesn't it apply to all Christians?

It seems hypocritical when those who quote God's word with one breath, suddenly talk about shooting people for any reason with the next. Which makes me wonder why so many church-goers who say they are Christians are actively fighting to protect their right to have automatic and semi-automatic firearms in their home. Why does anyone need an automatic or semi-automatic firearm in their home?

It also makes me ask why aren't Christian gun owners of America united in a drive to create peaceful, loving communities instead of viewing gun ownership as a solution to problems in US society?

As new gun regulations and US gun laws are being considered, I would expect Christian gun owners to be the first to say, "This is a wonderful opportunity to look at reducing gun crimes in America. How can we help make new firearms laws more effective?"

Why aren't US gun owners who are Christians writing to President Obama with constructive and open communication aimed at ensuring positive gun changes?


Using guns on farms

We shoot feral animals including rabbits. Many farmers in Australia own shotguns and rifles to protect livestock from predators.
We shoot feral animals including rabbits. Many farmers in Australia own shotguns and rifles to protect livestock from predators. | Source

Preparing for new gun regulations that target automatic and semi-automatic firearms.

I don't need a machine gun or a semi-automatic firearm to kill rabbits or foxes. In Australia a farmer, for instance, can have a gun even if they are a bad shot - but they'll never be granted a license for a machine gun so they learn to take aim with a rifle properly and kill a distant rabbit with the first shot.

"I don't want to shoot rats or rabbits!" most gun owners of America are probably saying. Well, I don't know quite what you are thinking you'll need to shoot. I do know, however, that if you have a gun and expect to be trusted to accurately hit what you're aiming at without causing unintended damage, injuries or death, you should be able to shoot and instantly kill a small living target with one shot.

I appreciate that there are native rabbits in North America, and I don't what the US gun laws are regarding shooting rabbits, feral animals or disease-carrying rodents. Perhaps you need a license, in which case, get one. If you live in a city, surely there's a gun range where you can work to improve your aim.

Here's a short explanation for readers who may not currently own a gun, but are considering racing out and purchasing one or more firearms before any new US gun laws take effect. Semi-automatic firearms are automatic in the process of extracting the spent cartridge casing and loading the next cartridge into the chamber, requiring no more effort from the person holding the gun than simply pulling the trigger again to fire the next bullet. Unlike a machine gun, semi-automatic firearms do not fire continuously. But there's certainly no need to draw breath in the time it takes to fire many rounds.

In a country like the US where shooting bears, deer and other large animals is part of life, I appreciate you're going to need a gun capable of executing the task quickly and effectively. Undoubtedly it would take a different gun to drop a bear than the rifle I choose to use to shoot rabbits, but skill and accurate placement of the bullet is still paramount.

It seems lazy and unnecessary to compensate for lack of skill with semi-automatic firearms in any non-military shooting situation. Plus if gun control and new firearms laws prevent you from using the gun you prefer, you may as well start getting used to shooting with the type of gun you'll be allowed.

Your forefathers managed to shoot bears long before the invention of automatic or semi-automatic firearms. With recent improvements to even most basic firearms, why can't Americans in the 21st century demonstrate the same skill as your ancestors?


Should I ever need a gun to protect myself or my children in a real emergency, for instance if a a pack of wild dogs roamed onto my property and threatened to attack kids playing in the corner of my yard, I have guns in my gun safe.

Because I actively shoot targets including moving targets as part of my sporting shooter's activities, I suspect I might only need one bullet per target. Of course I'd load extra bullets, just in case. I encourage gun owners, particularly new gun owners, to buy guns that are likely to comply with new firearms legislation and to master one type of firearm and use it effectively, instead of collecting an arsenal of firearms that are likely to become illegal and that you are unskilled at using.


We choose to use trigger locks

Trigger locks ensure children don't think they can play with real guns.
Trigger locks ensure children don't think they can play with real guns. | Source

Trigger locks

Too many parents let young children hold guns and put their fingers on the trigger. I'm sorry, but a real gun is not a toy. I think a gun should be treated with respect. Sure, I've let children look at my guns and even hold them carefully, but never without a trigger lock. Little fingers don't belong on triggers.

In a gun store recently, I watched a man buying a trigger lock because a friend of his (also a gun owner) had repeatedly pulled the trigger of his brand new rim-fire gun without bullets loaded. He was lamenting the damage he believed had been caused to his new investment.

He didn't bring his gun with him, so I don't know what sort it was. From the noise he was making, I guess it was some sort of fancy and very expensive pistol. I was tempted to suggest he buy more to use on his cheaper guns as well, but I suspect the last thing that eager young man would have enjoyed was advice from a woman the age of his mother. (I've seen the look on young men's faces enough times when I take out the 'shot of the day' award at competitive shoots to know that many men consider shooting to be a man's domain. They never look quite as disappointed when a male competitor beats them. I wonder why that is.)

A trigger lock won't stop someone who is determined to remove it, but it is certainly useful for keeping little fingers away from the trigger and, in the case of the irate man in the gun store, it will deter even big fingers from giving your gun unwanted attention.

Gun control legislation here requires all guns to be stored in a gun safe, and gun owners are not permitted to tell anyone the combination or the location of the keys. In addition to requiring guns to be safely locked away, the new gun laws make it easy for people to refuse access to their safe.

My husband's short-barrel Glock was one of the guns listed in the government buy-back when Australia's gun laws were tightened. He bought a longer barrel Glock with the money the government gave him for his previous pistol. If he stops competing, he will fail to meet the requirements for a pistol license and will have to sell his gun.

But if he's not competing, what other reason could there possibly be for an average person owning a gun like a Glock?

I fully appreciate that many gun owners buy a particular kind of gun just because it looks nice, or feels good in their hand. I have been told by American friends that they can own guns without ever actually firing them. Since the new gun legislation was introduced here, a year may pass without you needing to shoot your rifle or shotgun, but if you own a pistol you are expected to use it regularly, for instance in an approved gun club. and maintain your skills.


Why are you fearful of gun law changes?

For all the talk I hear from Americans about shooting intruders, and killing the bad guys, and the right to bear arms, and what a God-fearing country America is, and the Christian values proudly upheld in the USA, and how many of those same Christians would shoot anyone who tries to steal their toilet paper when the s*** hits the fan, including the man from next door and the kid from down the road, which is why they need semi-automatic weapons under their bed and next to their front door, I am at a loss as to what type of world exactly, the average American thinks they are living in.

Given the number of guns in America, and the number of fatalities and injuries suffered due to bullet wounds, and the drain on your health system trying to cope with those gun-related injuries, I'm surprised Americans aren't dancing in the street at the thought of tightening gun laws.

It might take an entire generation to get used to a new way of viewing guns in American society, particularly for gun-owners with an extensive collection of firearms that may soon be deemed illegal, but surely the thought of less conflict and less social carnage must be an attractive proposition.

Bad guys will always have access to guns on the black market. But I quite like the idea of it being harder for them, and more expensive, than just walking into a store like law-abiding citizens and buying a gun over the counter. I take comfort from the fact that they can be arrested and charged for just possessing a gun, without having to wait for them to shoot someone with it.

Responsible gun-owners should be allowed to keep guns. Responsible gun owners should have nothing to fear from the new laws. But if you are truly responsible, and you know that you cannot accurately hit a target, what are you planning to do with a gun?

Lots of people think they can shoot well, just as many people think they can drive like an expert, run fast, type quickly, sing beautifully, or excel at any one of many activities, but when they are actually put to the test and try to compete against others, suddenly their lack of skill and expertise is immediately apparent.


Inside the lower section of my gun safe

My gun safe has two doors. Here's the long arms section. Our guns aren't fancy, but they work.
My gun safe has two doors. Here's the long arms section. Our guns aren't fancy, but they work. | Source

Why don't gun owners in America just stand tall and proud?

According to news reports, Federal gun laws and State gun laws in the USA are widely under review. New gun legislation will certainly be proposed, and probably introduced. If not in all States, at least in some.

Gun law changes do not herald the end of the world. Why is so much effort being put into rejecting the concept of any new gun regulations? Why aren't gun owners of America seeking to find a compromise, where gun control is accepted as for the good of society, but new gun laws are structured to accommodate law-abiding citizens and allow them to continue owning guns?

If you are one of the many gun owners who believe you are responsible enough to be trusted with firearms, why aren't you saying, "Okay, sure. I can see that new gun regulations might help to protect my children and my community, and perhaps new gun laws could help reduce gun crime, and of course I am supportive of gun law changes that make it harder for potential terrorist and mass murderers to create the kind of tragedies we have seen in the past. But let's talk about what the best new Federal gun laws and new State gun laws should be."

It seems to me that the best way to protect your interests as a gun owner in America today, is to become actively involved in negotiating outcomes, instead of simply rejecting any hint of changes to gun laws. Any parent knows that the child who negotiates will get a better outcome than a child who simply pouts or throws a tantrum and shrieks, "no!" Every business owner and manager knows that staff who sit around the table and actively participate in figuring out ways to overcome problems are more likely to retain their jobs than staff who are belligerent and defiant.

Why aren't gun owners of America standing tall and proud and saying "Okay, take my photo and do a background check. I have nothing to hide." An attitude that demonstrates you don't consider yourself to be one of the bad guys, but you have no objection to new gun regulations that target the bad guys would, I respectfully suggest, be the way to go at this time.


Your personal decision about new US gun laws

I understand that this is a difficult time for American gun-owners ... which is why I would like to encourage calm and rational discussion of gun control issues.

As a parent and a gun owner, I believe it is important to make rational decisions about your personal stance on gun control. This period in America's history may well influence just who can legally possess firearms in the future. If you have children, that's quite a responsibility to consider.

Your children may be grown in the time it takes to make any real impact on illegal firearms, but one day if your adult child is threatened by someone who owns illegal guns, I suspect you'd be pleased to have a law that enables them to be arrested. I've heard of many cases in Australia where domestic violence has been averted when the threatened partner has revealed illegal firearms in their partner's possession.

Does that make a difference to your decision or attitude towards new US gun laws? I don't know, but it should surely be worth consideration. There's bound to be other issues and implications that you haven't yet had a chance to think about. Positive and negative, perhaps.

I do hope you'll take the time to discuss the issues with your friends and peers calmly and rationally, without getting caught up in a tsunami of emotion. You have a personal responsibility for deciding how you feel about gun control in America. The outcome of new gun legislation will have a direct impact on you and your family in more ways than one.

You have tragic social problems in the US including poverty and homelessness. If you fear the breakdown of society and more violence and unrest in your country, give thought to the role of guns in the future and just how easy it should be for every American to obtain a gun.

It was reported in January 2013 that research by Sydney University found Australians now own as many guns as they did at the time of the Port Arthur shootings in 1996 when the new gun legislation was introduced.

More than 1 million guns were destroyed in the gun buyback after the Port Arthur massacre, but in the years since then, Australians have restocked and we have imported more than 1 million firearms.

Despite the increased statistics for gun ownership here, the number of gun-related deaths has halved since the gun buyback.

Australia's Sporting Shooter Magazine says more people are licensed shooters than in the past. "The interesting thing is that at the same time gun crimes have still gone down, We've got more shooters, we've got more firearms, but we've got fewer crimes."

Good luck to all Americans with the successful resolution of your US gun laws issues. There 's more than a few gun owners here in Australia wishing you and your communities a successful outcome. :)


We keep all our guns safely locked in our gun safe when they are not being used.
We keep all our guns safely locked in our gun safe when they are not being used. | Source

© 2013 LongTimeMother

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    • mike102771 profile image

      Michael Collins 4 years ago from Lakemore, Ohio

      Very interesting article. Thank you for your non-American view of the gun debate here in the States. IMHO most of the debate has nothing to do with the actual law (which like most other new laws is toothless) it has to do with the perception of the law and the people who are controlling that perception. Or in other words these are the people who would scream that the color of the sky is a socialist plot if President Obama said the sky was blue.

      Part of it is how people do not want the government to be able to tell them how to live. The American government was originally set up to serve the people not the other way around. There is a documentary on how the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are using harsh tactics to stop people from drinking raw milk (Farmageddon). One image that really says what people are afraid of is of a SWOT team raiding a farmers market with their guns drawn to stop people who were breaking no law.

      Here in North East Ohio we are controlled by one political party (the one who does not like guns). This party had pushed legislation that limits hunting. The limits are to protect the deer population, but in reality the deer population has grown to such a size that they are a menace. To curb the problems of over deer population the state officials are hiring “sharp shooters.” So instead of collecting fees from hunters we are paying people to shoot them (the deer not the hunters).

      Most laws here in the US are not retroactive. That is to say we will not expect people to turn in 30 round clips they already own. Instead we will stop the sale of these items. No police will show up to people’s homes to check for illegal gun accessories. The police will only show up looking for raw milk (but that’s another story). Without a court ordered search warrant (or they think you may have raw milk) the police will not have the right to enter a person’s home.

      I have lived my entire life here in the US including in several large cities (Cleveland, and Baltimore) and I could count on one hand the amount of times I actually heard a gunshot. Lots of loud sounds, but little gun fire. There is a story (from the West Wing) about a flood that people use to express the concept that “God helps those that help themselves.” Expecting God to save you from an intruder goes against this.

    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 4 years ago from New York

      LongTimeMother,

      I can't believe anyone hasn't responded to this yet; the Amens or the naysayers. This conversation always gets me in trouble on one side or the other, but that is because some people from both sides have good arguments. But, one thing that I will continue to say is that if we feel the need to own guns to protect ourselves then there is something way worse going on in our country than the gun-law debate. Maybe people should realize that we've created an ugly place, with quick reactions and violence. Maybe we ought to curb that behavior and way of thinking and then after that has all been addressed talk about what we should do about guns. Thumbs up and interesting.

    • d.william profile image

      d.william 4 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Great hub, with many good points.

      Here in the U.S. people think the government is trying to take all their gun rights away from them. That cannot be farther from the truth. Those allegations are coming from the NRA (national gun assoc) who are only the mouth pieces of the gun manufacturers. They know better, but they are trying to protect the gun sales and the enormous profits being made by those who manufacture guns and ammunition, by riling up the gun owners using scare tactics and out right lies.

      In the U.S. the gun manufacturers are the one and only business that has managed to manipulate congress into passing laws that protect them from any liability from anyone being harmed by a firearm of any type, and for any reason. (and now the banks are moving in that direction as well if we allow them to do so).

      The protesters who fight any kind of gun control would sooner have their neighborhoods riddled with guns than use common sense measures to protect themselves by denying ownership to those who are obviously not capable of using proper judgment.

      Hopefully logic and sanity will prevail and this government will introduce some measures that prevent certain people from owning any kind of firearms.

    • mike102771 profile image

      Michael Collins 4 years ago from Lakemore, Ohio

      There are also the people who hate the president. These people will protest anything he is for. But, I am going to have to disagree with you. There are several businesses that have undue influence on Washington. Such as the banking industry, the coal industry, the health care industry, and the large agricultural companies. What’s lost in the argument is the middle ground where most of America is.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Thanks, Mike 102771. I heard about Farmageddon from another hubber, but haven't seen it yet. I saw the doco 'Food Inc' here in Australia and bought a copy of the DVD. I'm amazed there's not more of an outcry about what's happening in your food industry.

      We have an overpopulation of kangaroos in many areas, but not where I live so I'm always happy to see the occasional mob. Thanks for your thoughts and explanation.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Thanks for your thoughts, Cantuhearmescream.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      d.william, I am at too great a distance to know quite what's happening in the US except what makes it into our international news feeds. Sorry I can't offer a more direct response. Thanks for your comment, though.

    • Neall profile image

      Neall 4 years ago from Philadelphia

      LongTimeMother:

      Excellent Hub, it was a pleasure to read. The gun control debate in America has become too polemic, as have the many other debatable issues of our society. This polarization does not lend itself to discussion, cooperation or compromise which is a tragedy in a society founded on compromise. I did not say 'country' because, although we obviously are a country, we are more so a social experiment born of the social revolution of the second half of the 18th century. As 21st century Americans we need to keep that in mind or I fear what we are going to be passing on will be less than what we received. I agree with mike102771, most Americans are in the middle ground, but the extremes are so bellicose and vitriolic the middle is swallowed by the muck. As I watch the news today I have come to the conclusion that politicians and political commentators believe that the person who talks the fastest and the loudest must be correct. LongTimeMother, do you have room for me and mine in those woods behind your place?

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      lol. Plenty of room in the woods behind my place, Neall.

      I'm happy to be able to provide a discussion point for those who are not at the extreme ends of the debate. I think that rational discussion with others is extremely important in resolving any issue. When emotion gets in the way, quiet conversation is very difficult. Thank you.

    • Nish09 profile image

      Nish09 4 years ago

      I found much of your hub contradictory. "Bad guys will always have access to guns on the black market. But I quite like the idea of it being harder for them, and more expensive, than just walking into a store like law-abiding citizens and buying a gun over the counter. " If bad guys always have access to guns on the black market, then what are the gun laws doing? Does the black market concern itself with LAWS? "Law-abiding citizens are not walking into stores to buy a gun over the counter for the black market. These are two totally different things.

      Further, your statements regarding semi-auto weapons is contradictory as well. Are you sure you understand what a semi-auto weapon is?

      Besides that, our constitution protects our INHERENT RIGHT to own a firearm.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Maybe you should go back and read it again, Nish09. I think you must have missed a few things. Perhaps your focus on your inherent right to own a firearm has affected your focus on my hub.

      "For those of us who don't approve of armed hold-ups and shooting in the streets, there are definite advantages to having new gun legislation that enables police to arrest convicted offenders of violent crimes for simply possessing an illegal gun, instead of having to wait until they are caught in the act of offending again." I kind of thought that covered your first question.

      And as for you questioning whether or not I understand what a semi-automatic firearm is, did you look at the photos? Did you read the word Glock? Do you know what a Glock is??

      I don't take my photos from the internet library, Nish09. So yes, I do in fact understand the concept of semi-auto. Do you?

      What makes you think that any gun law changes will automatically ban ALL firearms? Seems to me Americans will still have the right to own a firearm, but perhaps to exercise that right it might be necessary to meet a few basic safety requirements. Like recognizing a Glock as a semi-automatic one. :)

    • Nish09 profile image

      Nish09 4 years ago

      Possessing an "illegal" gun is already illegal. What will a new law change there? Other than making more guns illegal, which will effect the otherwise law abiding citizen, not the convicted offender.

      I sure do. That's how I can see the contradiction in your hub.

      I never said anything about a ban on all firearms. But thank you for inferring. And again, your point is invalid and contradictory.

      The funny thing is, I did not be-little you in any way, but yet you attack me directly in your reply. That's such a common tactic of those floating b/s. talk about a tsunami of emotion.

      Further, it's pretty stupid to say that I'd be happy there was a law to arrest someone who came after my kid with an illegal weapon. As murder, attempted murder, and assault are all already illegal it really doesn't matter how they try to accomplish the crime.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      You and I obviously disagree on a number of points, Nish09, including the definition of 'attack'.

      By way of explanation, my question about banning all firearms and the following point came from you saying "Besides that, our constitution protects our INHERENT RIGHT to own a firearm".

      I thought I was answering the questions in your previous comment, Nish09. Done my best. If that's not good enough, sorry.

      Thanks for making the effort to respond to my hub. :)

    • Theophanes profile image

      Theophanes 4 years ago from New England

      It seems like one should note that a lot of the most hostile gun owners are the same people stock piling for Armageddon, the same people who think the world's ending and it is their right to take any one's life who tries to take anything from them. A lot are extreme Christians, the kind of people that make moderate and soft Christians completely want to disassociate with them. On top of this is a whalluping dose of racism which the NRA has been using to it's advantage. Obama is black after all and being black he's going to take revenge on us all by completely changing our entire way of living - starting by taking away the guns! It's a paranoid racist fantasy - a conflict that doesn't actually exist. It is even farther compounded by a misunderstanding of the right to bear arms - this was written into the constitution because we'd just overthrown the British and we didn't want to fall victim to an unfair government again so we made an allowance for *militias*, not necessarily individuals. And even if it did say individuals it's an obscenely outdated decree. We were talking about muskets in those days, now our military has nuclear bombs, does that mean our citizens should have access to that too?! To be even with their government they might have to overthrow, just in case?! God, I hope not.

      People who own these high-powered multi-round guns are usually either the zealots I mentioned earlier or people who just like to go to gun ranges and blow shit up. If they all were the latter I don't think I'd care that much but it's just too easy for people with ill intentions to get their hands on guns that were literally invented to kill as many people in as short a time possible. I trust my military with those guns, I can't say I like the idea of our civilians packing the same.

      I grew up in a rural area where people hunted and owned farms they had to keep free of foxes, groundhogs, raccoons, skunks, rabid critters, and other vermin. I understand a gun can be integral to this life style and I, and many other Americans, probably don't want to interfere with this law-abiding slice of our country.

      It's a can or worms. I hope we can learn from Australia but I think we're too egocentric. Only people who watch the Daily Show or go Hub hopping even know what Australia did with their gun laws. SIGH. I hope we can all come to an agreement to at least TRY and keep some of these weapons away from whack jobs. That'd be nice.

      Interesting read. I am happy to know there is still a chance for common sense to reign.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Thanks for commenting, Theophanes. I have seen a few US writers using Australia's gun laws as an argument against tighter gun control, but their argument is faulty. I thought it was time for an aussie to present the Australian perspective. :)

      Tighter gun control has certainly reduced gun death statistics in Australia. It would be unrealistic to assume gun legislation could prevent all gun deaths, but I believe there is plenty of room for improvement in America - including accidental shootings involving children.

      Thanks again.

    • d.william profile image

      d.william 4 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      The problem right now in America is that most politicians agree that there should be more restrictions on guns, but their priority is not toward any kind of reform that would benefit the people of this country. It is only focused on opposing Mr. Obama at any cost.

      The majority no longer rules in this country - the politicians with the biggest mouths get what they want by circumventing the legitimate processes of democracy to please the wealthy and Corporate America who probably pay them a lot more than the people do with their measly $174,000.oo annual salaries for the rest of their miserable lives for doing nothing but opposing the president.

    • profile image

      Leeboy 4 years ago

      To start with,we have laws against convicted felons and the mentally ill having firearms,the federal government will not enforce these laws.Secondly,the left thinks that it has sole power to decide what an assault weapon is,they don't.Thirdly,the feds always want to punish the law abiding citizens instead of the criminals and the mentally ill they catch with guns.Fourthly,the 2nd amendment is non negotiable.Every time I hear someone has been murdered,robbed,or raped in the street,I always hope it is a liberal.The democrat/socialists tried to pass their new laws and failed miserably.It won't come up again because they are going to have to spend a lot of time before congress trying to defend all the criminality that they are involved in.The civil rights of thousands of Americans,(possible millions) have been violated by odumbo and his regime of criminals,his attorney general,a violent anti white racist,is about to be indicted for perjury,he lied to a congressional commitee,the illegal AP wiretapping was a project of the dept of justice,the Benghazi scandal,where an American ambassador and several others were murdered and could have been saved,and last but not least,odumbo was using the IRS to bully and intimidate anyone who disagrees with him and his criminal regime.The scandals are getting deeper by the minute and even some democrats won't defend them.Do you actually think that Americans would give up their guns in times like these? As a matter of fact,Americans are buying guns in record numbers,they're stockpiling ammo to the point that it's hard to find and the manufacturers can't keep up with demand.I don't know what "christians" you were talking to but the ones I know,myself included,believe that self defense is a GOD given right and they wouldn't tolerate a criminal breaking into their home with plans to rob,rape,and murder,the bible is against senseless killing,not against killing to protect yourself or your family.Your government can't even decide what a home invasion is.I think you need to do further research because you don't seem to be aware of what's going on in the US.And don't concern yourself about us getting used to new gun laws,we are getting new laws and they are in favor of the gun owners,even illinois,has passed a law where you can carry concealed,the thugs in chicago don't like it,but they're going to learn how to live with it.An armed society is a polite society,this has been proven time and time again,if you don't believe me,check the stats put out by the FBI,their stats prove that the more guns you have in a particular area,the less crime you have,criminals don't like people that shoot back.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Hello Leeboy. It became immediately apparent to me just how different you are to the Christians I was referring to when I saw your comment: "Every time I hear someone has been murdered,robbed,or raped in the street, I always hope it is a liberal."

      Most of the christians I cross paths with would be saying, "Every time I hear someone has been murdered, robbed, or raped in the street, I always think it is a tragedy."

      I've read your entire comment but I'm not quite sure what you mean by "an armed society is a polite society", Leeboy. Perhaps you might like to explain that to me. :)

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Hi, d.william. Sorry for the delay in acknowledging your recent comment. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. :)

    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 3 years ago from The Midwest

      Here is the honest truth. If the Australian government passed a bill next week demanding that everyone in the country must turn in every gun then Mom would be at the front of the line.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      I guess you must be talking about your own mother, Jack Burton because you obviously don't know the honest truth about me. :)

    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 3 years ago from The Midwest

      What choice would you have? You are not going to be one of those "insurrectionists" that the gun control movement is always putting on us, are you?

      Again. What. choice. do. you. have?

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      ROFL. So my two options in your view seem to be either stand at the front of the line or take part in an armed rebellion against the government. lol. Do you always consider the two extremes to be your only options in decision-making, Jack Burton?

      I'd have lots of choices if the govt was considering such a bill, and even in the unlikely event it was passed - without the need to become an 'insurrectionist'. :)

    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 3 years ago from The Midwest

      So name them...

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      Why? Because you asked so politely?

      I notice you haven't bothered answering my question about whether or not you always consider the two extremes to be your only options in decision-making ... a question that simply required a yes or no answer.

      Instead, you require me to spend the time writing an answer worthy of a hub. lol. Ooh, she asked me to provide one word. I'll ask her to write 2,000 words instead.

      Not today, Jack. :)

    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 3 years ago from The Midwest

      As noted... you really can't name any other options. So you duck the question. Quack, quack.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      Okay, Jack. You've had your say, now it's my turn.

      I see absolutely no reason to waste my time responding to your comments. Here's my reasons for ignoring you.

      1) I don't believe there is any possibility of you responding in an intelligent, open-minded fashion, and

      2) I believe you are deliberately trying to disrupt rational debate on a number of topics in which you have some level of 'professional' interest; gun control being one of them.

      To save you the trouble of insisting I spend more time justifying myself, I'll offer you my observations and conclusions without further prompting.

      I have taken a look at your activities here on HP and elsewhere on the internet, Jack. From my research I have drawn a few conclusions.

      You state on your HP profile page that you have "almost 40 years experience in communications, having worked as a disc jockey, TV producer, radio station sales and general manager, newspaper publisher, and advertising agency owner." You also inform us you currently own your own "freelance marketing company working with organizations across the country" and that you are a graduate of "John Brown University and Southern Illinois University Graduate School."

      http://hubpages.com/@jack-burton

      And yet, when you comment on hubs such as mine, you choose to write in a manner that personifies someone with a very different background. I'm sure a man with your professional background will know what I mean.

      Your recent activity on HP over the past six weeks has been solely to express disdain and ridicule towards hubbers who write on topics concerning gun control, global warming etc.

      http://jack-burton.hubpages.com/#activity

      You don't offer anything constructive or useful as far as I can see, and it seems a little odd that you would choose to leave your mark on hubs and questions that have had no other comments for up to eight - even nine - months.

      https://strengthcourageme.hubpages.com/question/21...

      The above link takes us to many of your comments, Jack and, each and every time you chose to respond to yet another hubber on that page, you reinforced my suspicions about your real motive for commenting.

      I'm sure that anyone who would like to see more illustrations of your contribution to HP discussions can follow the earlier link to your activities page.

      So, Jack, having perused your activities I was left with the distinct impression that the NRA 0r similar might be one of the 'organizations' you refer to in your profile page - or if not, certainly one you'd like to sign up as a valued client.

      Let's be honest. Your behaviour could be used as a case study in a textbook on strategies used by marketing companies desperate to protect the interests of a client.

      Is that a coincidence?

      Hmmm. I'm not one to fire cheap shots at people who annoy me so I paid you the courtesy of conducting a little more research.

      What a surprise. There's Jack Burton behaving in a similar manner elsewhere on the internet.

      http://www.opednews.com/articles/Don-t-Put-Crimina...

      You have been a member on that site for 67 weeks. No articles. Just a handful of comments on, surprise surprise, gun control topics.

      It is interesting to see your photo in a suit and tie there, Jack. You look quite the corporate communications specialist. :)

      Personally I thought it was poor form the way you responded to an author whose credits read:

      'Martha Rosenberg is a health reporter and commentator whose work has appeared in Consumers Digest, the Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle, Chicago Tribune, New Orleans Times-Picayune, Los Angeles Times, Providence Journal and Newsday.'

      You wrote in one of your comments: "Martha, my dear, you simply have to quit taking all your info from the Brady Bunch and their ilk. "

      Is that the best you could offer, Jack? With your suit and tie photo alongside it, I expected you'd have made at least a little effort to treat the author with respect. But maybe not if your main goal is to impress blokes in the NRA. In that event I suppose it is acceptable to risk alienating every woman who visits the page.

      I learned a lot about you, Jack, by spending just a short time on the internet. From farm boy to industrial metal man, you've obviously had an interesting life.

      But the game's up now as far as I am concerned, Jack. Don't try to pretend you have any real interest in what my choices are. It wouldn't matter what I wrote, you'll be consistent in your response technique.

      Take your silly animal noises, Jack, and go and play somewhere else.

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 3 years ago from Southern Georgia

      I too am a gun owner as are many such people in this area of the deep south, LTM. Of course, hunting is a quite popular sport here with deer hunting being the major pastime of many people this time of year.

      Not a Christian myself, although you can't swing a dead cat without hitting one around here. Like you, I also feel the need to have protection from the criminals which are aware of most households possessing firearms in this area and most will use them to protect their families no matter their beliefs.

      Pay no attention to JB and other such "true Americans" as they call themselves. They do not speak for everyone, thank goodness.

      Rated up!

    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 3 years ago from The Midwest

      mom sez: So, Jack, having perused your activities I was left with the distinct impression that the NRA 0r similar might be one of the 'organizations' you refer to in your profile page

      Jack replies: Poor mom... she has such a weak understanding of freedom that she thinks people have to be paid to actually stand up for it. The concept that people do it on their own dime because they cherish it is beyond her.

      And we note that mom still hasn't explained her supposed options. But she works overtime to make ME the focus of the thread instead of freedom and choices.

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 3 years ago from Southern Georgia

      LOL @Jack--You do okay making yourself the focus of many threads and hubs here, and most likely elsewhere as well.

    • Theophanes profile image

      Theophanes 3 years ago from New England

      LongTimeMother - You're article is well expressed, thoughtful, and has this irritating thing in it trolls don't like - factual evidence. Don't mind Jack. He's also tried to muddy up one of my articles for I had the audacity to report on school shootings dating back to the 1700's. There wasn't even much of an opinion behind it - just a list of dates and circumstances but I guess that's more than he could handle. Please moderate the comments on this article or he will keep posting even months after he's stopped this round. He's worse than having fleas. Although he proves wonderfully he's the kind of person sane people wouldn't want having a gun int he first place. You know the kind, the ones likely to make a disgrace of the Stand Your Ground laws. Just sayin'. Peace. (PS - To Whom it May Concern, I'm not going to bother responding to this post so have fun getting your panties tied in a bunch over it. Regards.)

    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 3 years ago from The Midwest

      Randy sez: You do okay making yourself the focus of many threads and hubs here, and most likely elsewhere as well.

      Jack replies: Randy... I post about guns, gun owners, and the culture of guns. I gently correct and admonish those who post wrong information about guns, gun owners, and the culture of guns. I am not sure how that makes "me" the focus of anything.

      You are welcome to attempt to quote from my posts on hubs or threads concerning guns any private material that I've shared about myself. It's there... but it is rare in comparison to my discussion of guns. Even mom, in all her stalking mode, could only come up with material from my posts about guns, gun owners, and the gun culture. She had to dip into my bio that everyone has to find out anything personal about me.

      If I recall correctly, and since it was only a few hours ago, I am probably right, but it was Mom who decided to stalk me across the 'net. Not me stalking her.

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 3 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Whatever Jack, when I feel the need to be "gently corrected and admonished" I'll be sure to give you a call. Don't wait by the phone though. :P

    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 3 years ago from The Midwest

      Publish something about guns in error like so many of our fellow hubbers do and you might be surprised who shows up to help you see the truth. :-)

    • HollieT profile image

      HollieT 3 years ago from Manchester, United Kingdom

      Long Time Mother, unfortunately there are those who simply cannot have a reasonable and grown up debate. Best bet is to just delete their comments if you feel they add no value to your hub.

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 3 years ago from Southern Georgia

      No Jack, I'm seldom surprised by the many self-appointed "Real Americans" who tend to want to correct those with flawed thinking. After all, I'm surrounded by Christians of all sorts here in southern Georgia. They have the same attitude of self-righteousness in their admonitions. Carry on.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      Thank you, Randy. It surprises me that someone who claims to have expertise in communications and marketing behaves this way. Certainly not doing himself any favours.

      This is a man who can't tell the difference between research and stalking. Instead of responding in an appropriate manner, he seems disappointed that I focus on the specific aspects of his gun control posting. lol. If Jack Burton wants a book written about his life he'll have to do that for himself. I have no interest.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      Hello Theophanes.

      So nice to see you here again, 6 months after your last visit. I had been considering deleting this hub but now that I've been back and read it again I will probably spend some time putting it into prettier capsules, perhaps splitting it into a few shorter hubs, and maybe actively promoting it. :)

      I recall your hub about school shootings. Well researched and well presented. I learned a lot from it.

      I have never denied anyone the opportunity to express their opinion on my hubs before but I will certainly consider moderating in the future. Jack Burton has expressed his opinion often enough on this hub, and he continues to use words in the wrong context. I'd like to think with a university education that a writer would understand the meaning of words like 'gentle' and 'weak' and 'focus' but clearly they are beyond him.

      I guess he has his own personal 'translation' for them in the way that he misunderstands the term 'muddy up' and has to redefine it.

      Until such time as he lives in Australia and owns guns here I'm confident I remain more of an authority on Australian gun control laws than he is. lol.

      Thanks again for visiting, Theophanes. I am enjoying the increased traffic to this hub. :)

    • LongTimeMother profile image
      Author

      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      Thank you, HollieT. I can see the value in your advice. :)

      I am hoping that Jack will sit back and be quiet and stop the drama. Perhaps write another gun hub or recipe to add to his hub collection. Then he can always have the last word in the comments section. Won't happen here though. lol.

    • PoeticFailosophy profile image

      Diana F. King-Fyre :: DECEASED, 1962-2014, Rest in Peace 3 years ago from Cuzco, Peroo

      It is interesting to read the point of view of someone who lives in a country with strict gun control laws. Even if Jack and others don't agree with the opinions here, it is still useful to see a different side of the issue, so thank you LTM for writing such a thoughtful and thorough piece.

      Unfortunately, even if gun laws were much stricter, people who wanted to inflict mass casualties could find other ways, such as bombs. The parts needed to make bombs are much easier to obtain, and as weapons they are worse than guns, in my opinion. When you see a shooter you can try to hide. When the bomb goes off, that's it.

    • HollieT profile image

      HollieT 3 years ago from Manchester, United Kingdom

      @PF, I think that's a reasonable argument, but surely the argument should revolve around *how* we keep guns and bombs from the hands of the nutters? Not which is worse.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      Thanks for your thoughts, PoeticFailosophy. The Boston Marathon bombing was a tragic example of exactly what you are describing.

      HollieT, I agree with you but I have no idea how that could be achieved. Potential offenders will continue to circulate within our society, and rural supply stores will continue to sell fertilizers. I can't see how we can get around those to elements - let alone all the others.

      Thank you both for responding to the actual topic of the hub. :)

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

      Just for the record, I have deleted multiple comments from this hub, all of which revolve around debates with Jack Burton. I don't consider those conversations to be relevant to the hub so I exercise my right to remove them. :)

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 24 months ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      The Founding Fathers (and millions of today's Americans) believe the following is self-evident:

      1) We all have a natural/God given right to life

      2) We all have a natural/God given right to defend that life

      3) We all have a natural/God given right to the best means of defending that life.

      When seconds count, the police are just minutes away, so it is up to each of us to defend our lives and the lives of our loved ones. That's why Americans (and all other people) have the right to arm themselves, even if it is being suppressed by a government.

    • LongTimeMother profile image
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      LongTimeMother 11 months ago from Australia

      It would come as an even bigger surprise to me if you actually spent the time and effort thinking this issue through properly. :)

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