The recent murders at the movie premiere were in a long line of multiple murders by gunmen - some occurring in schools. Should the right to carry guns still be sacrosanct in the USA?
sort by best latest
In 2007 in the UK, where guns are illegal, 59 people were shot to death. In the US, where guns are legal, 10,129 people were shot to death. The population of the US is less than six times larger than the UK's.
The current U.S.A. population is over 311 million people (311,800,000 in mid-2011) so the United States has the world's third largest population (following China and India).
In terms of intentional murders, a gun ban will do nothing to reduce it. If someone wants to murder someone else (or commit suicide), they will find a way. Just look at the prison situation. Guns are banned in prison yet the intentional death rate i
JThomp42, the population of the UK is close to 60,000,000 so we can see that the figures do not support the idea that there is just as much murder without guns. CWanamaker, you mean the cinema killer would have done it some other way? How?
I see where you are coming from, but the Cinema Shooter would have been able to get a gun regardless if they were illegal or not. That's my point. Banning guns is not the same thing as making them all disappear from existence. People who want to co
But should it be so easy to get guns? Every so often these tragedies seem to happen in the US. They happen elsewhere but not as often.
Honestly I don't what the solution to the problem is. While access to guns is problem, but how do you control who gets them and who doesn't? Perhaps we need to focus on gun education, requiring permits to own guns (similar to driver's licenses), and
HOMICIDE RATES IN U.K.
2006/7 749 712 13.3
2007/8 772 734 13.6
2008/9 668 640 11.8
2009/10 626 609 11.3
2010/11 648 636 11.5
Jan-Dec 2011 564
The figures I gave for 2007 were just for shootings, not all homicides. Total US homicides in 2007 were 16,929. There were 1201 murders in the UK in 2007, but only 59 shootings. Sorry I don't understand your figures. Could you explain?
Posted on 11/06/2012 by CitizensReport
Table of London Gun Crime Offences by Borough – 2006 – 2011
BOROUGH Gun Crime 2006-07 Gun Crim
Thanks for that - I was missing the headings. This actually gives lower figures than the site I looked at - 749 in 2006/7 for all homicides.
That's just in London alone.
It says "Table of number of Homicides in England and Wales 2001 to 2011." That's not including Scotland and Northern Ireland, so that would explain the lower figure, but it doesn't say just London.
Agree to disagree.
Home Office figures - 636 homicides 2010-2011 in England and Wales.
Wow, I never heard this theory before. If the FBI did it, defending yourself with guns wouldn't do you much good nowadays, that's old technology. It's not the Wild West now. If you controlled the guns, these incidents couldn't happen so much.
Outstanding commentary, Ptosis, thank you!!!
Indeed...taking guns away from the public is a tyrant's dream come true. The criminal element will always have their weapon of choice, so disarming the general public will only cause more harm than good.
There are many democratic countries in which the people do not go around armed. Why would they need to in a democracy? Are you really in a tyranny in the US and are you going to wage war on your government?
I have no plans to wage war against my country, but my country is run by thugs who are at war with the world, and, in time, will turn against us, too. We are already a police state and the only reason it's not worse, is the public is still armed.
If that's true, that's a very frightening situation, CJ Sledgehammer.
Let it also be known that I do not put it past the American government, and its various agencies, to target the American public. Yes, I am saying that in order to create fear and elevate the prospects of gun banning, they hire thugs to fire upon us.
Is this a widespread belief in the US? If so, it would explain why they are holding onto their guns. I hadn't thought of the US seriously as a police state.
It was thought in the beginning that the 911 attacks were orchestrated by the CIA. The US Govt can track airplanes and it would be apparent in a few minutes if an airplane left its flight path without reason... the F14's could have prevented 911.
There's clearly a lot of mistrust of the US government. (It's not the only country where that applies!) but is this is a mainstream belief? I lived in the States a long time back and it was very different. This has been an eye-opener for me.
In 1962, America's Joint Chiefs of Staff, wanted war with Cuba. They knew they needed to create a pretext for war, so they devised a plan to plant false debris fields, hire snipers to fire upon American citizens, hoping to instill fear and outrage.
The Bay of Pigs fiasco has nothing to do with this subject. The president sent soldiers and soldiers use guns, it is an unfortunate fact of life. Ownership of guns by private individuals. I do not want people who cannot shoot well anywhere near me.
To sum up, it seems Americans are more afraid of tyranny in government than being shot by some lunatic, and believe that everyone having guns will protect them from this.
Mazzy... we are a nation born from revolution. Without guns, we would not have been able to defeat the Brittish and become the United States of America. This is why guns are important to us, and not just guns but the same guns our military has....
All countries fight wars, Davenmidtown. If we follow that argument logically, without atomic bombs we wouldn't have won WW2, so everyone should have one.
yes, but we do not have the right to bear Atomic bombs... nor are we fighting to keep that right. Guns are part of our heritage and are part of our constitutional rights.
I was just following your logic, Davenmidtown. I prefer to live without guns but I can see most Americans would not. I think you pay a terrible price for them, though.
and I keep telling you that you do not need a gun to be killed... there are many other means as I have continued to list in my comments. Death is death... not having guns is not going to end man killing man...
In America, we have the increasing threat of gang violence. If all you have at your disposal to protect your family is your little Swiss Army knife, you are going to watch your family violated in the worst of ways. Having a gun is the great equalizer
Is this true? Do most Americans feel as if they are under seige by gangs nowadays? Are there instances of families being killed by gangs who could have been saved if they had a gun, or saved because they did have one?
But surely, guns are made for killing. Are there any countries which ban guns which have such a high murder rate as the USA? It's too easy to kill people with a gun.
Table of number of Homicides in England and Wales 2001 to 2011
financial year Homicides
confirmed cases Rate
2000/1 847 764 14.4
2001/2 854 793 15.2
2002/3 1041 942 17.9
2003/4 852 772 14.6
2004/5 834 780 14.7
2005/6 764 708
you can kill with a pencil... it just takes motivation... the gun has no motivation... only purpose...
You'd have a hard time killing 12 people and injuring 71 people with a pencil.
It might take longer... but it could be done... how many people did Jack the Ripper kill without a gun? It does not take a gun to kill a human... it just takes determination. restricting guns is not going to stop determined murderers...
These multiple killings in schools, cinemas and post offices could not take place without guns.
There were thousands killed during the crusades and nobody had a gun. Women, children, the elderly, entire villages were killed. If the intent is to kill there are swords, knives, bow and arrow, spears, and even rocks, rope, and water available.
The Crusades were carried out by gangs of military thugs - not by one person.
If a crazy guy comes into a theater to kill me, I'd rather he had a rock than a tactical rifle with 100 round drum.
The culture that created the crusades was created by one person... the religious leader... the fact that humans cared so little for human life because of differences in culture is only evidence that humans will kill for little reasons
Don't think, Junkseller, that our governments wouldn't hire thugs or use their own ilk, to stage these murderous events to invoke fear and public outrage, such that, gun banning and the police state becomes, not only possible, but inevitable.
CJ... they already have hired thugs... those are the fources that the armed forces use when they do not use soldiers... they are contract companies that supply highly trained units similar ot the Navy Seals... I want to say blackhawk is one such comp
These conspiracy theories about the government are to me not a great argument for arming the population. The government controls the infrastructure - and military weapons - and wouldn't need to fight people face to face to get things under control.
Mazzy: You say that governmental conspiracy theories are not a good reason to arm the population, but our Founding Fathers would disagree with you. In fact, they would say the best reason to arm the population is to keep a tyrannical government at ba
CJ Sledgehammer, I'm just not sure that this would work nowadays. The government can stop power, fuel, telephone, satellite communication, food transport. I am not sure that people wouldn't just end up using guns on one another in that situation.
Mazzy I don't know the answer in how to stop the crazy insane people from using guns, but I don't believe the answer is taking away gun ownership from the law abiding hard working decent people.
It's a very different mentally in the US than in the UK where I live, efficient admin. British people, decent and hard-working or not, on the whole don't want widespread gun ownership, whereas Americans do.
she speaks the truth...
No matter how much you punish the shooter, the victims are already dead. Would they devise another method? Plant bombs? I doubt it - they like shooting. It's at a distance, requires no brains, makes them feel powerful. You could get a gun licence.
911 shows that mass murder does not require a gun... they used airplanes and fear. I refuse to fear dying which is why I make peace with god. You can kill me but you can not keep me from living through the use of fear. we fear death so we do not live
It's true there are other means to commit mass murder, but guns are a lot easier. However, I do understand the way Americans think about this issue much better now, having asked this question.
But does allowing citizens to own guns - and in some cases guns of the type clearly used for combat - do more harm than good? Hypothetical murderers are few and far between whereas gun accidents kill thousands every year.
Cars kill even more in a year, should they be banned????? Gun accidents do not kill thousands every year, that is a rediculous statistic that you are using.
The site gunsite.org, a pro-gun site, says 1,100. Other sites state 1,500. Wikipedia says 17,352 of 31,224 firearm-related deaths in 2007 due to suicide, 12,632 homicide. What were the rest? Also, 23,237 non-fatal gunshot accidents in 2000.
In the UK you cannot carry a knife. If you have a carving knife on your car seat, you can end up in court. There has been a wave of knife crime, particularly among young black guys. As yet there has been no wave of pantyhose crime.
I grew up in a hunting family. We all have guns. We have never killed anyone. We hunt to eat. The laws and punishment need to become very strict for crimes. humanity has lost its common decency.
Some states seem to be strict in that they have the death penalty. Obviously, it means that particular person won't re-offend, but does it reduce homicides in general? I hear different opinions on that.
Our death penalty here in the states is a joke. So many of those on "death row" die of old age before they ever see the gallows.
Cabel Television, basketball courts, linin services, quality food, education, libraries, legal, medical, cousiling services, etc are all benefits of going to prison. I have quality food. Everything on this list I have to pay for plus be taxed on.
You have a point there, davenmidtown. It's the same in other countries. However, you do have some tough prisons over there as well.
not tough enough to prevent crime. There is a heirarchy of crime where little crimes lead to larger crime, which lead to extreme criminal activity. We do little to prevent the little crimes so the population of criminals grow.
Yes, I saw a program about New York City, how zero tolerance of minor crimes helped reduce major crimes. I think it's a good idea but probably expensive to implement.
We already pay $50,000 per inmate in America each and every year. How expensive could this be in comparison to that?
I just read that Philip J Cook and Jens Ludwig calculated that gun crime costs the USA around $100 billion dollars every year. This is from a book called "Gun Violence - the Real Costs"
Guns are much easier to kill with than cleaning products. I'd rather be free to go to a cinema/school/restaurant/post office without being shot by some lunatic. Gun statistics were even worse in the past. I never thought of Jesus as pro-gun.
You can help the HubPages community highlight top quality content by ranking this answer up or down.
Why can't we punish the leaders of our country that did ( and still are doing) Fast & Furious type of operations? Why is it 'legal'[ when the gov't does bad things?
Punish them by all means. No standing politician in 2012 is getting my vote. That's small punishment, but it is at least something I can do.
It is legal for our government to misbehave because they are the ones making the laws and defining what is legal and illegal, and in doing so, always leave themselves an escape clause against retribution. Besides, might makes right...and so it goes.
Other countries haven't seen that, though, Rosana. If a burglar has a gun and you also have a gun, you are both more likely to fire out of fear. I agree with you about the moral decline, though.
I checked the Virginia State Police's figures for 2010 at
http://vsp.cache.vi.virginia.gov/downloads/Crime_i... (2011 wouldn't download) It says 29,243 burglaries that year of which 26,551 were domestic.
True, but you don't buy a car for the purpose of killing people, though you may end up killing someone by accident. You don't drink alcohol in order to kill people, ditto. But people do buy guns to kill people.
More people buy guns for recreation and hunting by far than people do for killing one another. The Mexican cartels would be thrilled if the U.S. BANNED GUNS AND EVEN MORE WOULD DIE AT THEIR HANDS DUE TO COMPETITION of illegal gun running.
I agree illegal gun-running could be a problem. Similarly, illegal drug trading is a problem, but drugs haven't been legalized. With registration, many people could still get guns but it would be controlled.
With all due respect Mazzy. To buy a gun from a dealer you must pass a background check, For "ANY" GUN and then the gun is Registered in your name. It is not as easy as you are making it sound at all.
I'm glad to hear that, JThomp42. I saw a documentary which showed a man just walking into a store and buying a gun. Maybe that was faked.
The colorado shooter bought all of his guns legally....
Many states require neither a permit or registration for many guns. Not all gun sales require a background check.
ALL States do require a background check if bought from a gun dealer.
From a gun dealer, yes, but not necessarily from private sellers, which includes some sellers at gun shows.
Jthomp42: You are right, but guns are an important ingredient to mass murder. Would-be assassins would have a hard time of it if they were only able to stick out their index finger and say, "bang...bang". So, yes, guns in the wrong hands kill people.
Others have also made this point. However, there is nothing so easy to kill with, and to kill many with, than a gun. Should every person carry a gun and a knife at all times for "self-defence"? Would this make things better or worse?
Man is mortal. One day will come to die if one is born here. Self defense....does it work when death comes? Then why one needs to kill other human being is the concern. To be honest there were so many comments and replies I did not went through all.
Well, all I know is that if I was in the vicinity of some mentally deranged and hate-filled person, I would rather neither of us had a gun rather than both of us. However, I'm in a minority.
Don think like that.....I will be more then happy to join you league.
As with pencils, scarves, panty-hose and other things that could kill people, the primary purpose of cars is not killing people. The primary/only purpose of many types of guns is injuring/killing people.
I am sorry Mazzy but you seem to be going around with a preconceived notion. Nothing wrong with it but please understand. You cant blame a lifeless object. Guns dont go on their own. Guns are for defense as well as offense & you need someone 2 fi
I agree you need someone to fire it, but if they didn't have it they couldn't fire it. We have far fewer gun deaths in the UK where guns are not banned but are controlled. A bar fight ends up in a black eye instead of death.
I can see that you support gun ownership but your argument isn't logical. We shouldn't ban guns because there are other causes of death? Do we not try to reduce these other things, disease, road accidents, etc? So why not try to reduce gun deaths?
Sorry I dont support gun owner ship. All I am saying that one things common between all causes of death from road accident to guns -- is a human being. An adversary. An enemy. What we need to do is to win over enemies and spread the bonds of Love.
I like the idea of spreading the love but that may be a bit hard to do. I think both parties not having a deadly weapon on their person might be a pre-requisite.
You need a certain mindset to own a gun and then it's just a short temper to pulling that trigger and then you have one of your good old fashioned USA massacres. Nothing like the "right to bear arms." (you also have the right NOT to bear arms)
Isn't there a better way? Why do citizens of many countries not need guns, yet Americans say they do?
People need to defend themselves around the world... not just in america. You can regulate which guns are sold but that does not stop sophisticated criminals, maffia, and gangs from getting any type of gun.
Have you ever had to defend yourself from any of these groups of people? Just wondering.
Americans need to defend themselves because the government leaves our borders open to criminals from Mexico and Central America, who just wander across our open border. Once here, they form gangs, rape, steal, etc., while police do virtually nothing.
I always thought the US police were very efficient, but maybe I've been watching too many movies. People should not have to defend themselves with guns - you need the rule of law, not the law of the jungle.
Mazzy: Criminals do not concern themselves with laws...they do as they please. By the time the inept police force is called, the damage has already been done. Right now, we have a sheriff from Arizona that is charged with "profiling" illegal aliens.
The police in Sacramento do not even come when called now because they spend so mcuh time dealing with more severe criminal activities...caused by people who do not fear the laws. Increase the punishment and make it a harsher punishment it may change
Mazzy, please don't take the Sledgehammer as being representative of Americans. Everything she says, I probably would say the exact opposite. The typical American is somewhere in between.
Thanks for that, junkseller. It's hard to assess what is mainstream opinion and what is a very individual opinion. However, I've realized the gun issue is tied to much wider issues and that may be why attitudes are so entrenched.
Ditto on Sledgehammer junkseller!! Her views are VERY ANTI AMERICAN and ANTI POLICE. But, Who are you going to call if you need them? The POLICE.
Mazzy: Please don't take everything that junkseller says as being representative of educated Americans, because, it, too, is just her own opinion. I am sure I would disagree with most of her opinions as well. She is cute in that hat, however. :0)
Is junkseller female??
No, I think maybe I got CJ's gender wrong. I was actually thinking of someone else. I don't know what gender CJ is. My apologies if I got it wrong. It was inadvertent.
Mazzy: Gauging by the picture, I would think not. I was offended that he promoted his assumption that I was a female, without even thinking to check the facts. I also did not appreciate his attempt to downplay and disregard my educated viewpoint.
I hope everyone is ready to end this thread. Everything has been said at least twice and I do not see any new people jumping in. Some favor limited gun control. Others oppose any gun control. I do not think any tragedy will ever change that situation
Said nothing about education. Simply making the point, that in my opinion, we represent extremes, not the middle.
JThomp42: It offends me that you throw out wild accusations without the benefit of knowledge or good sense. How is anyone to respect your opinions when you are so reckless? You may know a thing or two about guns, but you know nothing about me.
Speaking as a female, you both sounded like guys, without my even checking. Now, how did I know that :) I'm glad to hear different points of view on this subject.
Junkseller: Peace brother. :0)
CJ Sledgehammer AGREED!! I truly apologize. Just a touchy topic. PEACE!!
All's well that ends well. And, you are right, this can be an emotional topic, but we must remember that we are not the enemy. Peace be with you, too. :0)
Indeed, there are countries that do not allow citizens to possess guns, and peace ensues for decades. Guns may be helpful weapons in defending oneself against brigands and marauders, but in a country where no one can possess guns, why worry?
Thanks for commenting, philippeengel. It seems most Americans don't agree with you. A lot of people in Colorado are now buying guns "to defend themselves".
This is obviously a very contentious issue! I think the biggest thing to fear is fear itself.
Possessing a gun alone does not mean you are safe. The person holding the gun should follow proper gun discipline and should be properly trained to fire in self defense. When both sides are carrying a gun only the one who fires has a kill
Indeed. People are taught in school that humans are animals, and then we are surprised when they behave like beasts preying on society.
I think regulations are vital. It looks as if any lunatic can walk in a store and buy a gun in some states. It's just too easy. You can get a gun in the UK but you have to apply for a licence and state the reason you need one.
Reason: for sport & recreation
You also have to have a respected and trusted member of the community support your application. You have to have some way of at least trying to prevent homicidal nuts getting hold of guns.
I think you are absolutely right about the moral decline and it's not just in the U.S. However, why give the mass-produced reprobates deadly weapons?
Right now, I fear the emerging police state in America and America's rogue military machine, not to mention the puppet masters who pull their strings, more than I do common street scum.
Yeah...target practice is not a strong argument in favor of the second amendment.
1 answer hidden due to negative feedback. Show
1 answer hidden due to negative feedback. Hide