US 2nd amendment scorecard

Looks like we’re finally starting to take this scoreboard down.


except for the American revolution, the French, Italian, Algerian, Iranian, Mexican, Chinese, etc., etc., for a long while. It’s impossible to argue that guns are not useful for the task of overthrowing tyranny: they are, and they are used for that purpose all throughout modern history.

Anyway the historical purpose of the Second Amendment, despite what the NRA would have us believe, is not to overthrow tyrants but to mobilize civilians (i.e., not soldiers) for national defense. The first example was the Whiskey Rebellion, where Washington raised a militia from NJ to squash the rebellion in Pennsylvania by a bunch of guys with guns who didn’t want to pay their federal whiskey tax (which, prior to the income tax, was the main federal tax) - i.e., the exact opposite of overthrowing tyrants, it was suppressing a rebellion.

But its purpose IS to suppress tyranny in a way: the original debates about the second amendment included forbidding a standing army, an instrument of tyrants if ever there was one - see also the little-discussed third amendment, made as a bulwark against the same concentration of authority. We’ve long gone from those days, so we can scarcely imagine that this could be what the amendment is about. But it is NOT a useless idea; our standing army (read: “military-industrial complex” in modern parlance) is one of the greatest evils visited on this country and this world, and imagining alternatives is not a useless exercise.

Demilitarizing, also, may not be unconnected from the question of preventing school shootings. I’ll just leave this Tabbi link here:


Did you know that Tupac shot two cops who were assaulting someone? He wasn’t charged, because the shooting was justified. Resistance to tyranny happens all the time, and sometimes guns are a part of that.

I would like gun control advocates to take seriously the idea that the authorities are an immediate and deadly threat to many people in our society, and use that as a starting point for addressing the idea of reducing gun violence. The ideas may be reconcilable. But when I hear this kind of sarcastic dismissal of concerns about government oppression, it makes me think that gun control advocates just don’t get it.


That is factually untrue. He was arrested and charged with aggravated assault. The only reason Tupac didn’t spend the rest of his life in prison is because witnesses testified that he acted in self defense (one version of the story had one of the cops shooting at Tupac first, another one had them breaking his window).


Or? They have one now. TrumPutin.

Emphasis mine.
In Mexico, we don’t have the equivalent of a second amendment, even if we did, the Mexican revolution predates the constitution, I may be wrong but I believe the American revolution does as well. (Doesn’t matter, not my point).
It seems to me that you are only successfully arguing that the second amendment is not a requirement in order to overthrow tyranny, even if guns are.
At least I think that’s your point.


I think it’s a bit of a stretch to reframe “Wah! I doan wanna pay taxes!” as “overthrowing tyranny” :roll_eyes:


I’m guessing you don’t actually understand what transpired before and during the American War of Independence. Either that or that union jack on your avatar hints at some ancestral anal soreness.


That is an effective but flawed cartoon. It’s missing a third column, Tyranies Averted.

What do you have against Hawaii?


If you’re planning on overthrowing the Federal government you don’t NEED the Second Amendment, because revolutionaries don’t generally follow the laws of the government they are overthrowing. They certainly didn’t last time we had a revolution.

“But wait!” you say. “We still need the Second Amendment in the meantime so we’ll have the guns on hand when the time comes!”

To which I respond “didn’t you gunhugging mofos just tell us that gun control doesn’t work because a determined criminal will find a way of getting their hands on a weapon anyway?”


DEKA-MEGAMURDERER thanks was looking for a name for my new thrash metal band


Did he use an AR-15 to do it?

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First, I’m not a “gunhugger”, I am a peaceful, almost monkish academic. This argument is only of intellectual interest to me.

But yes, I do think gun control is ineffective. Its primary purpose is to be a light in the distance for liberals, the same way banning abortion is for conservatives - something devoutly to be wished for but never attained, and thus grist for an endless partisan political war.

While I applaud these students for their passion, I don’t think school shootings have much to do with guns; they have to do with schools, and the psychology of a society of caged individuals. I neither believe gun control to be achievable nor effective in solving this problem.

There are trucks all over the road. Any one of these is a lethal implement that can kill dozens in moments; yet this happens only rarely. The means to kill does not produce murder, the intent does. Our society functions because of self, not legal, restraint.


As long as you ignore the data from every other peer country.

I studied in Australia for a year. Even won an education-related award. Trust me, our schools and our society and our media aren’t that different. Our gun laws are.

So why do we bother giving soldiers guns instead of just sending them into combat with trucks and jeeps? Why do Second Amendment absolutists care if we take their guns away when they still have automobiles? Could it just possibly be that a gun is a far more effective device for killing people?


Last I checked, America had the largest economy in the world, the largest military, the most billionaires, fought the most wars, bombed the most countries. It is also the only advanced nation with no universal health care. Australia is not the US. All of these things shape the American psyche. I haven’t heard much talk of “Australian exceptionalism”.

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You basically stated that the reason we have school shootings on a regular basis has something to do with the way we run our schools. I’m telling you that’s bullshit, because the way we run our schools isn’t all that different than the way many peer nations run their schools.

It takes some serious denial to continue believing that America’s outlier status on gun violence has nothing to do with America’s outlier status on gun laws.


I think you are looking for simple proximal causes for something that is not simple. I DO think this has to do with America’s outlier status on guns, but only marginally in that the root of that outlier status is a deeper difference between Americans and others.

As for this having to do with schools, I do think this has a lot to do with them - with schools as an institution seated in a sea of frustrated entitlement, with high school especially as the last moment before the shooter is thrust into the adult world undefended, or with high school as the place where American dramas play out. All of this is much more difficult to confront than an obviously evil gun lobby, though, so I suspect we will continue pressing forward with that canard.


It’s not a canard.

Making guns less available would mean fewer mass shootings. How much more simple can that obviously effective method be?

As for an obviously evil gun lobby, yes, that’s exactly what the NRA is – a lobby that has its primary purpose the selling of more guns and ammo, and to hell with the consequences (those being more and more and more deaths) fits extremely well the profile for “evil.”