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I don't know how much news coverage it gets in Japan or elsewhere, but I think it is worth informing parents about gun culture just in case they're not aware.

In this particular case, like @mdchachi, I was unable to find any mention of it on Japanese news sources.
 
What I didn't know before this thread is that it would be considered normal for an American host to hand my child a gun without asking me about it. I'm sure I'm not the only person who wouldn't have realised this. Even if the host doesn't own a gun themselves, they might take my kid shooting with a neighbour.
For sure. If I had an exchange student the first thing I'd do is show them their room, where the towels are and provide them with a gun to put under their pillow.

This isn't true though. I am anti-gun, I suppose. But I don't want to eliminate the current private ownership of licensed weapons in my country any more than I think it would be a good idea to ban eating meat because I personally am a vegetarian.
I wasn't talking about you. Just the general attitude in America and why even "common sense" measures can't get passed.

If you're going to insist on making this analogy, the thing is, cars are strongly regulated. In most countries you have to register your vehicle, you have to have a licence, you have to be above a certain age to drive, you cannot get a licence if it's been demonstrated that you are a danger to others when driving etc. Reasonable safety precautions are in place. The same is not true of guns in America. This analogy is one of the favourites of pro-gun people, but they never follow it through to the conclusion.

Personally I agree with you. It makes sense that one would register weapons or have some kind of licensing scheme (which does exist for handguns but not for all types of guns and there are various loopholes). But there are powerful interests that stop such legislation.

also this German exchange student who was killed a couple of years ago.
These particular people seem to think intruders are around every corner just waiting to murder them and their families, and shoot first before assessing the situation.
I hadn't heard about this one. At least some justice was served; the homeowner got 70 years prison (really 20). This is highly unusual because if somebody shows up on your property like this and you feel afraid for your life and kill them there is rarely wrongdoing found (like in the Hattori case). In this case, the guy was baiting robbers because he had been victimized before. Tragic.
Ecuadorian student: Lots of Missoula teens were 'garage-hopping,' but no one expected to die | Local | missoulian.com
 
In the US there is a very big difference between cars and guns: we don't have a constitutional right to drive cars. Therefore the states can require licenses and registration for driving cars.

In some eastern states, I understand, there are registration and licensing schemes for handguns (which laws are of questionable constitutionality). But in my state there are none. You don't need a permit to carry, openly or concealed. We also have a stand-your-ground law which dispenses with a duty to retreat.

Contrary to the antis' arguments and predictions of mayhem, there is no widespread misuse of guns. Stranger shooting stranger incidents are quite rare. Accidents are also rare. Most firearm shootings are the result of domestic disputes like the one that's the subject of this thread. Breaking and entering occupied dwellings is also rare; burglars know they're liable to get shot, so mostly ply their trade on unoccupied buildings and homes.

We find our gun laws to be entirely satisfactory for the way we live. Foreign commentators don't impress us.
 
In the US there is a very big difference between cars and guns: we don't have a constitutional right to drive cars. Therefore the states can require licenses and registration for driving cars.
Constitutional right to bear arms doesn't mean constitutional right not to be regulated, licensed, etc.

We find our gun laws to be entirely satisfactory for the way we live. Foreign commentators don't impress us.
Speak for yourself. 👍
 
Constitutional bear arms doesn't mean constitutional right not to be regulated, licensed, etc.



... Shall not be infringed.

What other constitutional rights are, or should be, regulated or licensed? Any right the free exercise of which can be constrained or curtailed by the government can't properly be called a "right".
 
Mdchachi, by "we" I meant the people of my state, Alaska. We don't even care what they say in the Lower 48, lol.

Mike Cash is right. The Second Amendment of our constitution (right to keep and bear arms) has the same "shall not be infringed" language as the First Amendment (right to free speech, assembly, and religion). But neither right is absolute. You don't have the right to shout "Fire!" in a crowded theatre, and the government may require permits for protest rallies (sometimes) and parades.

Some regulation of firearms is also constitutional, but our Supreme Court hasn't specified all those circumstances. We do know that absolute bans on handguns and other firearms are unconstitutional, because the Court struck down such laws in Washington DC and Chicago. An example of what is probably constitutional is requiring a permit to carry a concealed handgun. My state doesn't have such a requirement though. Our only restriction is that we must inform a police officer we are armed if we encounter them.
 
Mdchachi, by "we" I meant the people of my state, Alaska. We don't even care what they say in the Lower 48, lol.
😄

Some regulation of firearms is also constitutional,
That's my point and that's all I said.

The shall not be infringed part does not prevent the right to be curtailed when it butts up against other rights or compelling interest. Same as various other rights that have similar clauses but somehow exceptions get carved out to not allow the yelling of Fire etc. It all comes down to what the courts decide. As you noted, in relatively recent history they decided outright bans on handguns are not constitutional. However in relatively settled history they decided the banning of automatic weapons is constitutional. And so it goes.
 
For sure. If I had an exchange student the first thing I'd do is show them their room, where the towels are and provide them with a gun to put under their pillow.

You said above it's considered normal to take a kid shooting without asking the parent's permission, right? That's what I mean, the kid isn't going to be able to shoot anything unless you hand them a gun.

I mean I hope that anyone with an exchange student in their house would keep the guns locked away and nowhere near the student except for planned shooting activities. But there are a lot of reckless people in this world, as evidenced by the far-from-unheard-of cases of small children picking up a gun that was lying around and accidentally shooting someone.

I do find it kind of funny that some people would think it's ridiculous I'd be afraid of guns because "there's such a low risk" of anything bad happening, but don't see the irony that they themselves are so afraid of the extremely unlikely possibility of anyone breaking into their home to hurt their families (rather than just, say, steal their stuff) that they feel they need a lethal weapon to protect them. We're all afraid of different things, because of our own society and experiences. Because of my experiences and the news that comes out of other countries, I don't want myself or my future kid handling a gun for any reason unless I know reasonable safety precautions are in place. At least my paranoia isn't going to hurt anyone.

I hadn't heard about this one. At least some justice was served; the homeowner got 70 years prison (really 20). This is highly unusual because if somebody shows up on your property like this and you feel afraid for your life and kill them there is rarely wrongdoing found (like in the Hattori case). In this case, the guy was baiting robbers because he had been victimized before. Tragic.
Ecuadorian student: Lots of Missoula teens were 'garage-hopping,' but no one expected to die | Local | missoulian.com

Again in that article there is a strong theme that they simply didn't know someone could be shot for entering someone else's property.
 
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In the US there is a very big difference between cars and guns: we don't have a constitutional right to drive cars. Therefore the states can require licenses and registration for driving cars.

It's funny how you drop the car analogy you were so keen on as soon as it doesn't suit you any more.

We find our gun laws to be entirely satisfactory for the way we live. Foreign commentators don't impress us.

Ultimately I can't vote or do anything about the gun laws in America, and I don't think I have said anything more than "safety regulations would be a good idea" and "parents and hosts should be made aware of cultural differences". But when I see yet another school shooting, or another unarmed teen shot to death for "trespassing", I have human empathy for them because I am capable of feeling for someone who is not from my country. For that reason, I cannot simply not care about this issue, and someone saying I can't have an opinion because I'm not from that country doesn't impress me.
 
You said above it's considered normal to take a kid shooting without asking the parent's permission, right? That's what I mean, the kid isn't going to be able to shoot anything unless you hand them a gun.
Yes I know, it was just your phrasing that I was making light of. "Handing your child a gun."
It's splitting hairs but by normal I mean for any family that is into sport shooting, hunting, etc. It would not surprise me at all if they had the idea to include the exchange student in their family activities. But your typical family, even gun-owning families, are not likely to do so. (As Frank mentioned, he's had many guns over the years and he didn't take any of his exchange students out shooting.)

Again in that article there is a strong theme that they simply didn't know someone could be shot for entering someone else's property.
Yes. That's pretty much common sense in America.
Yet as the article notes they learned the practice of "garage hopping" from locals. So it's such a low risk activity that even the local kids don't worry about it. Of course teens are not known for risk avoidance behavior (as you can see by any number of "epic fail" videos on youtube). So it's tragic when one dies simply for doing something st*pid like trying to steal beer from someone's garage.
 
I don't know enough about German gun laws to try to meddle in your affairs and tell you how to do things. But I'm concerned about human rights, and I suspect your country is denying the fundamental human right of self-defense. Even a rat will defend itself; it's instinct, a basic survival tactic used by all animals in crises, even more fundamental than the instinct to procreate.

Do you have any violent crime? Do your criminals have guns? If so, why does your government deny its citizens the same means for self-protection?

I can't vote in your country, but I have empathy for victims of violent crimes who are denied their fundamental human rights by a tyrannical government like yours. What happens when the police can't protect people, and they're denied the right to a firearm they might use to protect themselves? Just lie down and be a good victim, right? Baa, like a sheep, maybe? I don't think your country should have draconian gun laws.
 
I don't know enough about German gun laws
Actually our physicist friend is from the UK. But I don't think that that changes the content of your message.
Although it's interesting that in the UK that one of the debates they have is whether or not to allow police to carry guns! People were shocked apparently when some police were seen walking around with guns a couple years ago.
Police Scotland changes policy on armed officers - BBC News
Why British police don't have guns - BBC News
 
I don't know enough about German gun laws to try to meddle in your affairs and tell you how to do things.

That's strange, since you make the claim the government is "tyrannical" based on these same laws that you don't know about. That's a very strong and offensive claim to make by the way, as is accusing us of being sheep. I am trying to be calm and not react in kind but I admit it is hard with the insulting language you are using.

Here's some basic info, it discusses the kind of debate that's happening here recently:
Germany Faces Few Mass Shootings Amid Tough Gun Laws (Published 2015)
Germany has had a couple more mass shootings than the UK in recent years, and has a slightly higher rate of gun homicide, though still very low. After the Dunblane massacre in the UK in 1996 (a shooting in a primary school), gun laws became tighter to outlaw most handguns, and since then the UK has had a total of 1 mass shooting. In 20 years.
Dunblane school massacre - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Firearms policy in the United Kingdom - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Self-defence against violent criminals is not something I spend my days thinking about, in the UK or in Germany or in Italy or in Austria... (I've lived in quite a few places, I admit it's confusing). To me it's a really great thing that I can afford not to think about violent gun crime. Yes, I'm small and female and unable to physically fight should someone stronger choose to attack me. But I honestly don't think owning a gun would help me in the slightest, especially since when recently someone tried to assault me I pretty much froze up in shock (and unless I'd been carrying the gun around on my person all day, it wouldn't have been to hand anyway, even though this happened in the house I was staying). That was in Serbia, another country that I lived in briefly which has far looser gun laws than the other places I've mentioned. I can say for certain I didn't feel any safer for that fact, quite the opposite.

I also don't believe I ever have a "right" to hurt or kill someone. It may be justified if I have very good reason to believe they wish me serious harm and there is no other option like just running away. But even then I doubt I could actually go through with it.

We don't want to arm the ordinary police in the UK because for most people the threat of possible police brutality is much more real and present than the threat of violent criminals. There are special "firearms officers" who do carry guns, but they don't even turn up when there's rioting. We're talking "murderous gunman on the loose" before we see them in action normally. (This happened once, a fair few years ago, and was a rare enough event to get wall-to-wall coverage; I recall seeing armed police on the TV).
EDIT: I should be more clear here, actually this varies slightly between England and Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, as there is some difference in the way these regions are policed.

My main point was, you cannot criticise my government or my country's laws and then turn round and object if your own country's laws are under discussion. You were happy to criticise Japanese bike registration and German noise regulation in another thread. This "if you don't like it, don't come here!" attitude is what I took issue with.
 
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My recollection is different. I recall posters in this thread began telling us Americans what our gun laws should be, and some of those remarks I found condescending.

I'm sorry if you took offense, but in fact most Americans (and Alaskans especially) feel this way; really, if you don't like our gun laws, and are afraid of guns, there are other countries to visit. Guns are a fact of life in many American homes.

And by the way, I wouldn't take a minor shooting without his/her parents' permission. I'm aware that some parents would object and are afraid of guns. However irrational these fears are, I believe that parents have the authority over what they want their child exposed to. I also wouldn't take a minor on a long road trip without parents' permission.
 
My recollection is different. I recall posters in this thread began telling us Americans what our gun laws should be, and some of those remarks I found condescending.

More condescending than calling me a sheep who passively accepts my "human rights" being denied? You can't complain about people being condescending if you are happy to insult them or decide your fears of very unlikely events are a matter of "human rights" but theirs should be dismissed as "irrational".

really, if you don't like our gun laws, and are afraid of guns, there are other countries to visit. Guns are a fact of life in many American homes.

Again, I care about the issue of gun control even if I and my family were never to visit America again (though I will probably have to for work at some point), because I can have empathy for people that I do not know who are victims of gun accidents or violence, which do undeniably happen with greater frequency in America. If you are allowed your opinion on Japanese or German laws, then other people should be allowed to express their opinions on the USA's. Else I shall have to squawk loudly "if you don't like it, don't go there!" every time you say anything negative about another country on these forums. I could be kept busy.

I'm sorry if you took offense

That should be "I'm sorry for being offensive". The idea that Germany has a tyrannical government is not just an insult to Germans (who IMO have one of the most representative democratic processes in the world), but a mockery of those hundreds of thousands of people who have left all they had behind and risked their lives to come here because they are fleeing actual tyrants. Do not throw these words around.

The fact is, the UK and German governments did not impose anything on us. In response to mass shootings, the people called for more gun restrictions, and the government responded. Long live this kind of "tyranny". Baaa!!
 
I've realized that you are simply looking for an excuse to be offended. Not sure who appointed you to be offended on behalf of other nationalities, but I'm no longer sorry you took offense; since you're so easily offended, who knows what might trigger another diatribe?

Americans obviously have a different concept of individual liberty than others. There is such a thing as a tyranny of the majority, especially if rights aren't preserved in a constitution of some form. Therefore I am not surprised that some majority voted to take away rights. Americans have been known to do the same on other issues. Right now, a popular vote might exclude Muslims from the US; but fortunately we have a constitution that protects minority rights.

When I go to Japan I don't rail against their draconian gun laws. I accept that I'm in a different culture and keep my criticism to myself. Perhaps if you visit America again, you should do the same.
 
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When I go to Japan I don't rail against their draconian gun laws. I accept that I'm in a different culture and keep my criticism to myself.
She really didn't say anything different than plenty of Americans would say. Maybe even a few Alaskans.
 
There is an urban/rural divide in America, but it's easier to take criticism from within the family than from an outsider.

James Bond got my back up, and now madphysicist is throwing gasoline on the fire. I think it's time to give myself a time-out.
 
When I go to Japan I don't rail against their draconian gun laws. I accept that I'm in a different culture and keep my criticism to myself. Perhaps if you visit America again, you should do the same.

Wait, aren't you the guy who just became incensed over the tyranny of bicycle registration in Japan? Where was your moral outrage against outside criticism then?

This American thinks it's reasonable to listen to the opinions of our neighbors throughout the world, even if we disagree, instead of trying to shut them down with "If you don't like it, stay the hell out!" language.
 
I've realized that you are simply looking for an excuse to be offended. Not sure who appointed you to be offended on behalf of other nationalities, but I'm no longer sorry you took offense; since you're so easily offended, who knows what might trigger another diatribe?

Americans obviously have a different concept of individual liberty than others. There is such a thing as a tyranny of the majority, especially if rights aren't preserved in a constitution of some form. Therefore I am not surprised that some majority voted to take away rights. Americans have been known to do the same on other issues. Right now, a popular vote might exclude Muslims from the US; but fortunately we have a constitution that protects minority rights.

When I go to Japan I don't rail against their draconian gun laws. I accept that I'm in a different culture and keep my criticism to myself. Perhaps if you visit America again, you should do the same.

"I'm sorry if you were offended" is a favourite non-apology of people who refuse to admit any responsibility for the offensive things they've said.

You decided that the people of Japan, Australia, the UK, Germany, and basically every other European country are living in repressive regimes where they passively accept being denied their "human rights", based on their gun laws which you admitted you were ignorant of. Yes, that's offensive. And your characterisation of foreigners as "outsiders" really tells one all one needs to know about your willingness to bridge cultural differences or consider others' perspectives.

Is saying "safety measures should be in place" really "railing" or a "diatribe"? That's literally the only thing I have suggested with regards to the actual laws - I wasn't even specific about which safety measures I'm in favour of, for goodness' sake! It was far less critical than what you have said on the subject of bicycle registration, or about the gun laws of other countries in this thread.

Well, you've beaten me. I just can't argue with that kind of rock-solid hypocrisy. Good day sir.
 
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