Monday, June 29, 2009

Sorry I Shot You

News of the day? In Washington County, "Man, Woman both wounded while trying out their new gun." "Police say the couple simply didn't know how to operate the gun properly"

Is it preposterous of me to suggest that in order to buy a gun, you need to take a class? You need to take a class to operate most dangerous items (cars, motorcycles, anesthesia, scalpels, electricity), but anyone in Pennsylvania can buy a gun without proof of competency?

Unlike Pennsylvania, a lot of states (including Arizona, Tennessee, and Texas) appear to actually have required classes if you wish to carry a concealed firearm. I can't find any classes required for just using a gun. I guess you're more dangerous with a hidden firearm rather than carrying one out in the open???

In Philadelphia, the city has gained the ire of the NRA by passing lots of restrictive gun laws. And the NRA is winning this battle. June 18, the state Supreme Court over-ruled the Philadelphia ban on assault weapons as well as their straw purchase provisions. However, the state Supreme Court upheld Philadelphia's law to report lost or stolen handguns, the same controversial law that Pittsburgh passed last year. You win some; you lose some.

Moral of the story? In Pennsylvania, almost anyone might have a gun. Be aware.


Anonymous said...

It's a shame that the only time guns are mentioned in the media is due to some stupid person, or in this case, people doing something asinine.
I would be very interested to know where they purchased the gun, and also what made them want to get a gun without doing some homework first.
Any reputable gun store will ask you a bunch of questions before selling you a firearm of any kind. What do you want it for? What kind of experience do you have?, etc. Also, most gun stores will also require you to disassemble and assemble the gun before you even leave the store. They also know of classes that are offered and local gun ranges where you can practice.
Dumb people give responsible gun owners a bad name. You never hear about how just the presence of a firearm can prevent a crime or home invasion.
The NRA may be extreme in many cases, but they offer a wide range of classes all over the country for women, children and people of all ages. There are self-defense classes, target shooting classes, and classes to familiarize yourself with a firearm. The NRA takes personal gun safety very seriously, as should anyone who chooses to bring a firearm into the home.

illyrias said...

AAA takes driving safely very seriously, and they can co-exist with car laws. Guns are very dangerous. Period. People are shot in Pittsburgh every week. Period.

When the Vice President accidentally shoots someone, you know there's a problem.

I'd also like to force people to carry insurance for the potential gun damage they can do, just like I have to carry car insurance to own a car. If you're low-risk, your gun insurance will be low.

East Busway Blogger said...

I couldn't agree more with Illyrias, and this is coming from a former military service member who owns a firearm.

As someone who trained with firearms, responsibility is something that should be stressed (or enforced by law if necessary) and not painted as some sort of infringement on people's rights.

Since I own a firearm and only have it for lawful purposes I have no problem following regulations and laws that make sure that I only use it for lawful purposes.

The only people that should be unhappy about regulations and laws concerning gun safety are those that own illegal firearms or have plans to use their firearm illegally.

Also, let's not forget the people who wear tinfoil hats and think that the government is coming to get them.

n'at said...

but driving a car isn't a right. there were over 39000 motor vehicle deaths in 2008, and an estimated 35000 death by firearms, most of which were suicides.

i think there should be a city ordinance that all greetings must be deep, heartfelt hugs. No one-arm half hug or that ass-out shoulders-in embrace/back pat. Failure to follow the ordinance would elicit an immediate group hug by at least two uniformed officers, until the actor reciprocates... I'm just sayin'

Lady Elaine said...

Wow. That should give lots to the gun-banning advotates. Idiots.

illyrias said...

Lady Elaine, I somehow feel the need to say that I'm not a gun-banning advocate. I just wish for more responsible gun use or more rules governing them. I also don't have any desire to own a gun, but I would like to try shooting one at some point.

n'at, good use of twisting statistics. Didn't even want to bother responding to this one, but I got bored. How about you also bring up the percentage of gun owners to car owners? And the percentage of time spent by Americans driving versus shooting a gun?

illyrias said...

Also, pittchick, you said:
"Any reputable gun store will ask you a bunch of questions before selling you a firearm of any kind."

The problem is that as far as I know there's nothing enforcing that a gun store be reputable.

n'at said...

Illyrias: You're comparing the lethality of the two, but I was attempting to state that one object that was not designed to kill, which when operated, kills more people than another object that is explicitly designed to kill.

I guess I'm so liberal, I'm a libertarian: stupid is as stupid does with those people in the P-G article. No amount of rules or mandatory coursework will help them. If lack of education is the problem, then why anyone with post-secondary education smoke, ride a bike without a helmet, not buckle up, drink more than 2 glasses of wine per day, or participate in unsafe sex?

I'm holding fast on the hug ordinance, though.