America and Guns

Discussion in 'Every Day Debating' started by Crouton, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. Crouton

    Crouton New Member

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    As you all know lately I've been getting more and more frustrated by Americans blaming their gun problems on video games, movies and TV instead of themselves. So when I saw this graph I just had to post it.

    [​IMG]

    Yeah... almost all of those countries play the SAME games, watch the same movies and watch the same TV. Go to any of those countries and I can almost guarantee the latest Call of Duty will be a top seller game, and the latest Tarantino film will be playing to sold out cinemas. Yet look at the difference between gun violence in each country. More than anything this should be proof that violent media is not to blame. Japan has the most violent media than any other country yet it's the safest place to live! I'm so sick of America blaming all it's problems on something that isn't too blame. America does have issues with gun violence. There's no doubt about that. They just need to stop using petty excuses like violent media to cover up whatever is really causing it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  2. olivia_the_lamb

    olivia_the_lamb Moderator Staff Member

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    [​IMG]

    I also got this graph from that website and it's different.



    Edit: I think MY graph is wrong, actually, sorry.

    I do agree with you though, America needs to stop blaming violent media for its violent crimes. As I stated before, we have a keen way of sweeping things under the rug. Like, if I knocked over a glass of water, I'd blame it on my boyfriend for setting the glass there, not me for being clumsy. /sigh. Personally I think there's a correlation between our drug laws and gun violence. If everything under the sun besides alcohol wasn't illegal, I think America would have no reason for this violence. I know people who sell even marijuana who have been held at gunpoint before. It's really sad.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  3. Crouton

    Crouton New Member

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    Yes, there are other countries with more gun violence than America. A lot of those countries are third-world, warn-torn countries. If America's only claim is that they don't have as much gun violence as such countries as those then that's pretty shocking. And also, I didn't start this thread about gun violence in general. I started it about America blaming it's own gun violence on media like games and movies, when that really isn't the case. Also that graph you posted doesn't have any titles stating what the numbers actually represent.

    EDIT: I just saw your edit. Yes that's exactly the type of thing I'm talking about! Drug laws, the economy, politics, religion etc etc. I'm sure there are many other actual reasons why America is so violent. It's just so frustrating to see them over and over again blaming things like games and movies. It's just an excuse.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  4. Overread

    Overread Wolfing it up! Staff Member

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    America is in a bit of a mess, I think greatly because many efforts to improve things (especially social efforts) can be derailed by the opposing party so easily with "communism" claims. Sadly a whole generation of American politicians are scared stiff of it still as are the public - and sadly those elements both still hold a significant sway.

    One argument I've seen repeated a few times is that a major reason the US has a gun problem is because of the reduced medical access, especially for the younger, unemployed and the poor. Even those who are not that poor still have problems getting medical access, especially if they are requiring regular medication or checkups. Sadly their moves toward a national health system have been very slow (I think they have their experimental Obama Care now but its not been easy getting even that into effect).
    It does hold some grounds since many of those who have gone on gun shooting sprees are not average people but those who are mentally unbalanced and clearly in need of medical care well before they went that far off the rails (and often many of them were identified as risky well before they perform their shooting spree).


    Add to that the fact that their relaxed gun laws allow access (official and unofficial) to a lot of much more powerful weapons; even countries that have a similar gun density to the USA don't allow people to have access to the high powered automatic and other guns that those in the US can get hold of. Sadly until they have some major social changes I don't think an anti gun law would ever get into effect (its just too culturally strong even if they have no real "need" for guns).
     
  5. Crouton

    Crouton New Member

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    Excellent post Overread. You highlight many sensible reasons of why America could actually have so many gun problems, without resorting to such pathetic things as blaming games and movies like the America media and the NRA are doing right now.
     
  6. Overread

    Overread Wolfing it up! Staff Member

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    The whole blaming movies and games is a very old argument and honestly its one of those ones that really only the media and some crackpot politicians really put a lot of drive behind. The other primary group is parents who also buy their kids 18+ rated games and so have only themselves to blame*

    As time passes I expect this area to dwindle in power, its simply got no real evidence to back it up and the "this nutter plays video games" argument gets weaker day by day as games are now played by almost everyone including many adults.


    *although I will point out that advertising for younger audience games and media does tend to take a back seat to more adult advertising. Just look at computer games where most big titles are teenage to 18+ and get all the reviews and raving whilst many lower age titles are not only poorly programmed but also often under advertised in the reviews.
     
  7. JIM

    JIM zombie Turncoat

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  8. olivia_the_lamb

    olivia_the_lamb Moderator Staff Member

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    I thank the gods every day that I wasn't born with an American sense of humour.


    I would also like to say that I relate with the American people on little to nothing and the only reason I care about our social policies and shite is because I have to live here. The way Americans carry themselves (and everything else) disgusts me. I'm pretty sick of hearing about how awful America is, but I've just given up on caring because there's no use in me trying to pretend that I'm proud to be an American when I very much so am not.

    Giving most Americans a gun is like giving a child it's first birthday cake; a mess. I'm lucky to have enough people in my life (boyfriend, best friend and his brother, uncle and cousin) who know how to use guns and use them properly (for hunting or just for sport at the shooting range) and know how to sensibly ensure that no accidents at home happen and no one could steal them or go on a rampage. My boyfriend's guns are here so if I decided to go on a spree, I'd not be able to because his ammo is locked up in a safe. That's how it should be. I don't know.

    We have so many issues in this country, yet, we'd rather focus on which foreign country to bomb than look at gun control, women's issues, or the giant national deficit.
     
  9. Taliesyn

    Taliesyn It's a feral reality out there, kids.

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    Olivia, you shouldn't ever be ashamed to be an American. I know the rest of the world likes to bag your country all the time (and maybe there are sometimes good reasons to) but you do also have a lot to be proud of. I would be the first to admit that I'm one of those who are alarmed by America's love affair with guns, but you guys get so much else right. One thing I immediately think of is the pioneering, "can do" spirit that America as a nation displays, which is something that all the citizens of the world can be inspired by.

    Okay, back on topic. Just wanted to throw that in there.
     
  10. Crouton

    Crouton New Member

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    I agree with Eph. I'm sick of America doing stupid things like blaming gun violence on video games, but America also does lots of awesome things. Every country has it's positives and negatives. I love Australia and am proud to be Australian, but this country has a lot of serious issues. Just today I was reading in the paper how it's still legal here to fire someone for being homosexual if it conflicts with religious interests. I think that's sick and archaic, but as I said no country is perfect.
     
  11. olivia_the_lamb

    olivia_the_lamb Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, thank you guys for that.

    I just feel like the bad outweighs the good the majority of the time. The only time in recent years that I was proud to be an American was when Obama was re-elected. I guess if that really happened, there must be some hope for my country. I just wish my opinion mattered, even on things like guns. But I'm a 24 year old stay at home girlfriend who is, yet again, taking a year off of university.

    If there were people like me in the government, or even like you guys, America would be way better off.
     
  12. Lord Yuan

    Lord Yuan Death-Thousand+

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    Being critical of your country means you care enough for it to want it to change.
     
  13. olivia_the_lamb

    olivia_the_lamb Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes it does. I care a lot and I wish we would change, it's just hard to get the ball rolling when you mean, essentially, nothing to your government.
     
  14. Turambar

    Turambar Harebrained Staff Member

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    It would be a mistake to think that Japan is a safe place because in some year or other there were no homicides by the bullet. Japan has a huge institutionalised organised crime system which is unrivaled in the developed world. It's just that guns are considered to be dishonorable and will only serve as some sort of last resort. They say there's a place in Japanese society (and, until very recently, in Japanese law) because of tradition involving feudal syndication.

    The United States of America has a history of gunslinging and vigilante law. Guns are a culture in the United States, much more than anyone else. There is a lot to be said about the Second Amendment, but I think the power of this amendment is underestimated. Basically, the United States saw it necessary to not only include in the law - but amend the constitution in such a way that bearing arms would be legal. There are very few constitutions which mention weapons and I am sure that the ones which do don't allow their citizens to keep or bear them. This right seems to have entwined with the American identity. And I have a strong feeling that this has much to do with the fact that it's part of the constitution and how it makes part of that.

    A lot of people say that this doesn't matter. That owning guns is not any indication of violence. However, I also feel that owning guns certainly doesn't help and identifying with them might be dangerous. And whatever you say, people do identify with guns. When a good portion of your disposable income is spent on guns, no doubt the power allures. And a lot of people are perfectly and effortlessly capable of withstanding that power. Some, however, can't. The fact that this might indeed be the case could take its toll. As such, sticking to your guns can't be expected not to have any impact. And that shows. In no part of the developed world is the chance as big to face a gun or die by one.

    My advice for the US would be to revoke the second amendment and make arrangements about guns in lower legislation, to nudge the US into a different approach toward guns. Nothing will change if that right stays part of the constitution. However, I don't see how the constitution would be changed accordingly in our generation. As such, I don't believe the US is ready to part with the real issue at hand. Naturally, other factors will be blamed - the world needs Black Sheep. I fear that no one will notice however that shifting blame to and fro is futile. It always has been, much as kids these days seem to be up to no good. Whenever these days might be.
     
  15. JIM

    JIM zombie Turncoat

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    i believe i'm in the minority on this one lol
    i AM a gun owner, collector and hunter, not so much into target shooting. i'm also a person who's dropped a weapon to beat the living piss out of someone. it's not that guns are evil themselves.
    i do agree with Tur's statement in the other thread. 4 yrs ago i accidently shot my friend in the leg with rock salt. we went fishing at the high point of the drought, forcing us to walk 4km past the boat ramp to get to the waters edge. now we knew the area was full of snakes, hence why i had my snake gun. now as a hunter i am used to not stepping over fallen logs, i step onto the log and check the other side, my friend gareth however, was not accustomed to the practice. he was in front carrying the bait, me behind carrying the shotgun and the lines. he stepped over the log and a brown reared. i saw, fired, blasting the snake and his leg at the same time. he screamed like a little girl. i checked the wound to make sure he wasnt bitten, then wante to continue, again like a little girl he wanted to go to the hospital..... i called him a bitch and we turned around, me now scouting.
     
  16. Turambar

    Turambar Harebrained Staff Member

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    Oh, and I moved this thread. It is, for all intents and purposes a debate thread, so I sent it to EDD :)
     
  17. Running Wolf

    Running Wolf Join the Madness

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    Many parts of my opinion have already been mentioned, but here goes...

    the 2nd amendment: like Tur already said: don't - never ever - underestimate that amendment. Sometimes I get the feeling that that is america. It makes america. Like saying the pledge of allegiance every morning at school, the 2nd amendment makes america. I have no idea how to say it, but it is one of those 'rights' you get no where else (like the right to pursue happiness) and I'm pretty sure that many people went there because of that right. It simply... gives more independence (which is exactly what it intends). If you live out there in the wild wild west and there's a maniac on your ground or in the house, you don't have to wait for the police, you can just handle the situation yourself. Nowadays that sounds a tad weird, but back then it made sense. It is after all a huge country where the next person to help can be miles and miles away. Better to have a gun with you, just in case^^
    At this point in time I feel pretty safe in predicting that america will never get rid off that amendment, I rather believe that it will split into 2 or more smaller countries.
    Also I guess that taking that right away would feel pretty much like taking a basic human right away. And the human rights have not been around as long as that amendment, so don't underestimate the emotional component in this.

    Important factor in these statistics, where the US kill a lot more people with guns than other countries:
    - Remember: No western country is as diverse as the US. Diversity brings problems and a "melting pot" boils every once in a while. I don't know where the german homicide-rates would be if we had that many ethnic and cultural groups as the US has
    - poor health-care: like OR mentioned, if you're poor and mentally unstable, you have a problem
    [... many factors already named...]
    one I like to add:
    a lack of intergenerational communication of values.
    It sounds so... condescending, I know and I'm sorry, I don't want to offend anyone (seriously, I don't), but what I witnessed in the US during my (short) stay at a very divers school: Many parents simply set rules, DOs and DON'Ts, without explaining the reasons behind it. Then there's this weird thing when parents say "don't talk back" or that rule "mom is always right" -
    But talking back enables a discussion, motivates to use your brain, makes you find arguments to bring into a discussion, makes you think for yourself and think about that rule your parents set.
    And "mom is always right" is simply very wrong. Moms and Dads are people and people fail. Sometimes teenagers can be right too and I think admitting a mistake is a great thing to teach.
    I think those are important values: teaching that no authority is always right; teaching that with strong arguments you can achieve something; teaching to think about the consequences of your decisions for yourself rather than just accepting that rules are rules.
    Oh and trust. I somehow got the feeling that american parents have a severe trust-issue with their kids. BUT, I only got to know a few families and I can be very wrong about it.
    What does that have to do with guns and homicide?
    Directly? nothing. No one would kill somebody simply because the parents didn't trust him.
    Indirectly? Something.
    I believe it adds up. If I never have to think things through because I live in one of those families where the authority is always right, where I am constantly controlled, where I have to live by dictated rules that I cannot bend or change - I can feel like a caged animal.
    Frustration can become anger, anger can turn into hatred and hatred, well... hatred is a strong feeling.
    That of course is usually not enough. Some sort of psychological weirdness must usually come into this as well to make it explode. (though I believe that sometimes what I just mentioned can be enough to break a person if there are no resilience-factors. Like, for example, if you don't have a chance to escape those surroundings because you're also being homeschooled or something)

    Plus, I think in comparison it's being rather easy to fall off the grid in the US. Through home-schooling, no health insurance, living way outside and stuff like that. Who will notice that a kid grows up without morals and bad-example-parents, if no one ever sees that kid?
     
  18. jake1964

    jake1964 Old enough to be your dad

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    I realize that everyone posting here is not an American citizen.

    I would like to make a clarification regarding our Constitution and what the intent of our founders was when it was written.

    Although the fed would like to forget this, our founders set up the federal government to have limited powers.

    The Bill of Rights was specifically added to our Constitution not to give us certain rights, but to guarantee that our government could not pass laws to take certain rights away from the citizens.

    In other words, they were written into the Constitution to limit the power of the government, not to limit the rights of the people.

    The Constitution can be amended. I am copying the procedure from Wikipedia below.
    You can see that to change our Constitution requires more than the whims of the 535 elected officials in Washington. That is to prevent our government from easily taking away what our founders considered to be fundamental rights.


    Article Five of the United States Constitution describes the process whereby the Constitution may be altered. Altering the Constitution consists of proposing an amendment or amendments and subsequent ratification.
    Amendments may be proposed by either:
    two-thirds of both houses of the United States Congress; or
    by a national convention assembled at the request of the legislatures of at least two-thirds of the states.
    To become part of the Constitution, amendments must then be ratified either by approval of:
    the legislatures of three-fourths of the states; or
    state ratifying conventions held in three-fourths of the states.
    Congress has discretion as to which method of ratification should be used.
    Any amendment so ratified becomes a valid part of the Constitution, provided that no state "shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the senate," without its consent.

    Class is dismissed.

    As you were. ;)
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2013
  19. Lego

    Lego God amongst men

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    My personal opinion is that gun control in America needs sorting out, we don't have guns here in the UK and we manage just fine, people do not need to arm themselves in their own homes. Then again they need to sort out their mental care too.

    I can go on and on about it, but it is no use as no one ever listens, easier to blame Obama, or Halo. So I am not going to even argue, it's up to America to do what it wants to do, I don't care, I'm just glad I don't live there, and never intend to, will take my chances here where I can walk down the street without the fear of being shot.
     
  20. Crouton

    Crouton New Member

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    I should have made the title of this thread better. It's not about guns in general, but specifically about gun violence being blamed on video games and movies, which I personally think is ridiculous. It's why I care so much. A lot of the time I don't care what happens in America with their guns. But I do care about video games and I do care about movies which is why this gets to me so much.

    EDIT: It seems like most people have taken this to be a general thread about just guns, rather than the way America is blaming games and films like I hoped it to be. That's okay I guess. It's my fault for not labeling the thread properly. But to make my own point clear. I no longer care about how many guns each American owns and how often they kill each other with them. The only thing I care about here is the unfair backlash this is having on the film and games industries.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2013