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Wed Dec 19, 2012, 11:02 AM

In their alternative universe, the solution is getting rid of gun-free school zones

A letter in the paper this morning was yet another rendition of a meme I've seen floating around the last few days on the interwebs, which puts forth the argument that the solution to school violence is to get rid of gun-free school zones.

The "thinking" is that Lanza was able to do what he did because he walked into school where he would not meet any opposing force. If everyone is packing - teachers, staff, maybe even kids - then someone like Lanza would never have gotten as far as he did.

I'm pretty sure I would not want my first grader in a school where everyone is pulling guns. You can argue that he'd be dead because there was no opposition, but I don't see that multiple people with semi-automatics and poorly aimed pistols shooting bullets in all directions is safer.

Lanza managed the damage he did not because he was unopposed but because he had weapons capable of shooting 45 rounds a minute or whatever it is.

The argument extended to say that "not very long ago" kids went hunting before school and left their guns and rifles in the car during class and there was no gun violence. What that argument extension leaves out is that no one was packing assault rifles, and likely hadn't been inculcated by Call of Duty video games and prepper parents giving access to assault rifles to mentally disturbed kids. And having a gun in your car doesn't help when you're in the classroom.

Other arguments along this line are that Mexico doesn't allow guns, but it's rife with gun violence (hence proof gun laws don't work) and that Switzerland requires everyone to have a gun and has almost no gun violence. This is cherry picking pure and simple, because there's also Britain where, until recently, even the POLICE only had batons, and there was little gun violence. The difference was that Britain had a gun policy and enforced it.

Any of the westerns you would see (not that movies are always true reflections of reality) have everyone armed. In a shoot-em-up, everyone pulls a gun, and lots of people die. This thinking that everyone having lethal capabilities keeps us safer is the warped alternate reality view that I had come to expect from the Bush era.

I don't want my son to go to a school where everyone is armed. What I want is for him to live in a community where no one has assault weapons in their closet. When nobody's armed, that's when I'll feel safe.

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Reply In their alternative universe, the solution is getting rid of gun-free school zones (Original post)
Tab Dec 2012 OP
Recursion Dec 2012 #1

Response to Tab (Original post)

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 11:15 AM

1. "Gun free zones" are misunderstood

The point of a "gun-free zone" is that there's a zero-tolerance policy for any weapon found there. People will point out that it doesn't stop mass shooters, and they are right, but that's also not their purpose (as depressing as it is, I can't think of something that will actually stop a crazed individual who is determined to kill a lot of people, unfortunately). I was in high school in the early 1990s (when, remember, gun violence in schools was at twice the level it is today, even with mass shootings) and I'd like to see the policy continued since I would argue it's a big part of why violence is so much lower in schools today than it was back then.

What that argument extension leaves out is that no one was packing assault rifles

People have been hunting with semi-automatic rifles for over a century. But, as a reminder, shootings in schools were more common in the 1960's, back when you could do that, then they are today.

What I want is for him to live in a community where no one has assault weapons in their closet.

Well, semi-automatic rifles are far and away the most popular class of rifle sold, so we need to figure out a way to live with them rather than wishing they would go away.

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