In American crisis, anger and guns

By Bernd Debusmann
March 19, 2009

Bernd Debusmann - Great Debate
– Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own. —

In the first two months of this year, around 2.5 million Americans bought guns, a 26 percent increase over the same period in 2008. It was great news for gun makers and a sign of a dark mood in the country.

Gun sales shot up almost immediately after Barack Obama won the U.S. presidential elections on November 4 and firearm enthusiasts rushed to stores, fearing he would tighten gun controls despite campaign pledges to the contrary.

After the November spike, gun dealers say, a second motive has helped drive sales: fear of social unrest as the ailing economy pushes the newly destitute deeper into misery. Many of the newly poor come from the relentlessly rising ranks of the unemployed. In February alone, an average of 23,000 people a day lost their jobs.

Tent cities for the homeless have expanded outside a string of American cities, from Sacramento and Phoenix to Atlanta and Seattle, for people who are living the American dream in reverse. First they lose their jobs, then their health insurance, then their homes, then their hopes. The encampments are reminiscent of Third World refugee camps.

Often former members of the middle class, tent dwellers’ accounts of their plight to television cameras have a common theme: “I never thought this could happen to me.” Unlike the victims of Katrina, the 2005 hurricane that destroyed much of New Orleans, many of the newly-poor are white.

The FBI says it carried out 1,213,885 criminal background checks on prospective firearms buyers in January and 1,259,078 in February, jumps of 28% and 23.3% respectively. Keen demand turned the stocks of publicly-trade firearms companies like Smith & Wesson (up 80% since November) and Sturm Ruger (up more than 100%) into shining stars on the New York Stock Exchange.

There are no statistics on how many guns are bought by people who think they need them to defend themselves against desperate fellow citizens.

But, as columnist David Ignatius put it in the Washington Post, “there’s an ugly mood developing as people start looking for villains to blame for the economic mess.” In November, an analysis published by the U.S. Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute listed “unforeseen economic collapse” as one of the possible causes of future “widespread civil violence.”

The American economy is down but not out, and in mid-March some experts reported signs that the pace of the decline was slowing. But it hasn’t slowed enough to sweep away the sense of anxiety and fear that comes through in many conversations and commentaries about the future of this normally optimistic country.

While Obama’s approval rating remains high, at 59%, almost two thirds of the population thinks the country is on the wrong track, according to a poll commissioned by National Public Radio in mid-March.

“What is really remarkable about all this is that there hasn’t been social unrest,” remarked an executive with business interests in Latin American countries where riots and street demonstrations in response to economic squeezes are routine. “The conditions for it are all there.”

ANGER ABOUT BAILOUTS

Anger is building. Just under half of those surveyed in a poll by the Pew Research Center this month expressed anger about “bailing out banks and financial institutions that made poor decisions.” The poll was taken before details became known of the full extent of the bonus-paying spree to members of the very team that brought the insurance giant AIG close to collapse.

The government propped up AIG with close to $200 billion and now owns 80% of the company. The argument that $165 million in bonuses had to be paid under contractual obligations went down particularly badly with workers of the three U.S. car companies whose leaders appealed for support from the Bush administration last year when the economic crisis gathered steam.

One of the conditions for the billions that were dispensed to the car industry was that contracts between auto workers and their union, the United Auto Workers, had to be renegotiated to cut costs. The union agreed, and the question arises: are contracts with blue-collar workers less binding than those with highly-paid derivatives traders?

Some see this as another sign of the inequalities that Obama promised to address. Remember his famous exchange with Joe Wurzelbacher, aka Joe the Plumber, during a campaign stop? “I think when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody,” Obama told him.

There’s less wealth to spread around now as trillions of dollars has evaporated with increasing speed in the deepening crisis. In housing alone, more than $5 trillion has vanished. The gap between rich and poor, a gap of Third World proportions, has not changed. A full-time worker, on average, made $37,606 last year, considerably less than in 1973, adjusted for inflation.

While CEOs made 45 times as much as workers in 1973 they make more than 300 times as much today, according to Holly Sklar, author of “Raise the Floor, Wages and Policies that Work for All of US.”

To what extent those gaps will shrink under Obama remains to be seen and the outlook for swift action is not promising. There are, in fact, not many things for which the outlook is promising. Exceptions include Smith&Wesson. They expect revenue to double within the next three years.

You can contact the author at Debusmann@Reuters.com.

263 comments

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Herr Debusmann,

interesting opinion. I personally would like to hear from those that are living in “tent” cities why they are not living in their Japanese or Korean Cars, or sleeping between their sheets made in pakistan, or walking in their shoes made in China. Consume, consume, consume, that is all I ever hear, well I am finished. I will no longer buy from a business that does not support other local companies, including American Car companies!

As for the rest, I am sick of it, I will keep saving 20% of my income, pay my mortgage, love my wife, and remain a proud American!

Posted by Sherwood Baker | Report as abusive

Typically as joblessness grows so do black markets. People need money. Since this or the prior administration has not funded the safety nets well enough to care for the millions of jobless, they will turn to alternative work. Drugs and prostitution will become the fastest growing. There will be those that, for some reason think robbery is the less moral damaging way to go but may of them will be armed with something deadly. So as turf wars wage and burglars surprise business and home owners violence will ensue. This administration could set up cheap housing for the displaced in a very short time frame but without a WPA style jobs program that would make sure honest income was flowing to these families black market income looks real good.

Now what is really bad is Mr. Debusmann trying to somehow get the fact that there are more guns in society as a contributing factor in the commission of violence. The people buying guns legally are most likely not going to commit a crime. They may stop one, though.

Posted by B.Free | Report as abusive

Mr. Debusmann’s leftist politics fit perfect with Reuters political motives.

His quote:
“fearing he would tighten gun controls despite campaign pledges to the contrary.”

That is a lie.

If you look at whitehouse.gov site, and had you looked closer at his campaign websites, Barack has always said he supports a permanant “assault weapons” ban. You know, the ones Mr. Obama said “belong on a battlefield”?.

I don’t know anybody here in America that has been able to purchase a select-fire weapon since the 60′s…

Posted by Scott | Report as abusive

The American Dream is quickly turning into an American nightmare. Maybe the purchased guns are to be used against top AIG executives or bailout bankers?. The American society is turning into a powderkeg with a long fuse. And the situation is bound to turn worse before it improves.

Posted by Ricardo | Report as abusive

Firearms are also useful in hunting — obtaining food is the second reason I have firearms (the first is target shooting). In much of the US hunting for food has long been a way of life — I know of families that survived the Depression on rabbits, ducks and squirrels taken by hunting.

Posted by Mike D. | Report as abusive

B. Free (whose gun apparently gives her so much confidence and security that she is too frightened to publish her real name), says: “The people buying guns legally are most likely not going to commit a crime. They may stop one, though.”

Surely even in the wackiest caricatures of Dubya’s America, trading the crime of theft for the crime of manslaughter never counted as “stopping” a crime?

Posted by Ian Kemmish | Report as abusive

Ian Kemmish says “Surely even in the wackiest caricatures of Dubya’s America, trading the crime of theft for the crime of manslaughter never counted as “stopping” a crime?”

I say manslaughter would never be the charge if you stopped a theif cold with a 40 S&W who breaks into your house while your kids are sleeping in their beds. It’s called justifiable homicide. There’s no “trading”. One is a crime, one is not.

Posted by Roundup Logan | Report as abusive

I’m not sure what the author is trying to convey here…are we buying guns because the economy is in the pits? Are we buying guns because we’re angry? Are we buying guns because we’re planning to subvert the gov’t because, quite frankly, they’re a bunch of boobs and we need to get rid of them?

A very ominous sounding article that has no focus and no understanding of gun ownership in America.

One question that doesn’t appear to have been asked or researched was ‘where are all the guns being purchased?’ I know that some of the gun sales increases have come along the border we share with Mexico. This is because the Mexican drug cartels are waging war for control of the distribution routes into the US. This has resulted in an increase in shootings and kidnappings here in the US. There is also evidence that drug cartel members are crossing the border into the US to purchase guns they can’t purchase in Mexico.

As for Mr. Ian Kemmish’s response – I am a proud gun owner. Sir, you make a false assumption that killing someone in the defense of their property is the same as manslaughter. It is not (as long as it’s proven that you were indeed defending yourself). In those states where conceal and carry laws have been passed, the incidence of violent crimes with guns has been reduced. Those states that still have a ‘ban’ or laws that prohibit citizens from owning guns (ie, New York City, Washington D.C.), rates of violent crimes actually increase.

Finally, from a high level, another reason why gun sales could have increased was just last fall the Supreme Court heard arguments in a case revolving around the gun ban in Washington D.C. and whether or not it is Constitutional. I would think that prior to these arguments, gun owners might have been purchasing guns just in case there was a ruling for the gun ban (and therefore against the 2nd Amendment) in Washington D.C. Fortunately our Justices ruled correctly in favor of the 2nd Amendment and against the Washington D.C. gun ban.

Posted by Don from Texas | Report as abusive

Ian posted:
“Surely even in the wackiest caricatures of Dubya’s America, trading the crime of theft for the crime of manslaughter never counted as “stopping” a crime?”

Ian, protecting your home and family with deadly force is not Manslaughter it is justifiable homicide. Most thinking states have adopted the Castle Doctrine which protects homeowners from prosecution for defending their homes. Unfortunately in the world we live in now the scumbags who would rob you care nothing for your life and will take it even if you give up your money, wallet or car without arguement.

Have a great day…Go Armed!
TJ

Posted by T. Jefferson | Report as abusive

Ian (if that is your real name), Drop the crack pipe and step away from the keyboard. A large number of innocent citizens are maimed and killed by thieves. My definition of “stopping a crime” is someone defending themselves, not their property.

Do you want unarmed police to come to your house when you’ve called in a burglary? Do you realize that the police are always just a few minutes too late to save someone’s life? Criminals buy guns to commit crimes; law abiding citizens buy guns to defend their families from criminals.

Some people like me also live in states where you don’t have a neighbor within a couple miles and don’t have a police station within 20. What would you have me do if some criminal threatened my life or the life of my family? Call the cops and ask the criminal to wait 30 minutes?

Wake up or continue to live your life as a helpless victim with your eyes closed to the realities of the world you live in.

Posted by North2Alaska | Report as abusive

The tradeoff, Ian, isn’t manslaughter, it’s usually what would be “brandishing” (a form of assault) if not justified, other times it’s non-criminal homicide; and in most states simple “theft” (larceny) isn’t enough, it has to be personal, “robbery” or “burglary”.

In any case, is it the newly poor who are buying guns?

Posted by David Scott | Report as abusive

This guy Ian must be completely out of his mind if he believes that defending oneself, family, or property is considered a crime. I don’t know where you live but in many parts of this Country (The US), it is legal to defend ones home (Including ones automobile) with deadly force if necessary. So if someone breaks into your home in the middle of the night to rob you and your family, I guess you’ll just hide under the covers and hope they’ll leave you and yours alone and unharmed???

Posted by anthony temacino | Report as abusive

Hey Ian, I have guns and I’ll gladly publish my name. I live in a state that upholds my God-given right to defend myself and my family and that’s why I always carry a legally-concealed loaded hand gun. I train with it on a regular basis so that I am always able to immediately respond with lethal force in the face of a threat on my life and/or property. Hopefully I’ll never have to.

Posted by Robert Ridgway | Report as abusive

Ian, I used my real name just to show you I am not afraid. Trading what you are calling manslaughter for theft is not considered so in any state where guns have not been outlawed. (i.e. Kalifornia, Illinois) It’s called protecting your family and property. Some day you must grow out of this ‘Dubya’s America’ thing and realize things are changing and it’s not all the Hope and Change and Unicorns and Skittles promised by the current administration.

People ask me why I carry a .45 everywhere I go and at all times. My response is simple, “Because they don’t make a .46″

Posted by Tj Rueb | Report as abusive

Ian Kemmish assumes (without any supporting evidence) that B. Free wants to kill someone. In truth, in the overwhelming majority of instances where a firearm is used to protect property or for defense, the firearm isn’t fired. So there is no trading of the crime of theft for the crime of manslaughter.

Additionally, manslaughter is not committed in circumstances of self-defense. Mr. Kemmish needs to familiarize himself with the laws concerning this issue.

It is a strong deterrent to be looking from the wrong end of a firearm someone is obviously ready to use.

Posted by Lobengula | Report as abusive

Hello Ian,

You just revealed that you are unarmed and vulnerable. Could you please include an address next time? Unlike you, B. Free is practicing good personal security by not revealing whether he/she is armed or keeps weapons in the home. There is no need to attach a name to an opinion on an Internet forum, especially if it marks you as a target in some way. B. Free is acting intelligently, rather than impulsively…exactly the type of person you want to own a gun.
Being armed does not mean that you have to use lethal force if you encounter criminal activity. It simply means that the option is available if the crime escalates from petty crime to a threat of violence. Would you live in a jungle without some means to defend yourself from potentially violent wildlife? If not, that doesn’t mean you are a bad person, it just means that you are prepared. If you began killing animals needlessly, then there would be a problem. I don’t believe there is any difference between gun ownership in an civilized area or a jungle, the animals are just more intelligent (for the most part) outside the jungle.

Posted by Gun Owner | Report as abusive

Mr. Kemmish: I fail to comprehend why the defense of my property and life against a criminal intent on depriving me of same is regarded as a bad thing. We have laws that say taking other people’s property is wrong. Since the thin blue line is under no obligation to intervene during the commission of a crime, I’d like to know why it’s considered wrong for me to defend myself and my property. I work to provide the few luxuries I have, why should I just let someone take them away from me? Do they deserve them more because they take what they want and I foolishly pay for the privilege of ownership? Or is this a socialist ploy saying that “ownership” is wrong? Of course, getting past my redneck alarm system (multiple large mongrels and one purebred charmer)will give the local constabulary time to arrive … and ticket me for the noise level while the criminal escapes. The odd thing about everyone having a gun, a lot of people will think twice about pulling and using one. Not everyone, but a lot of them; which prevents me from having to use one myself. I’d rather have the weapon and not need it than end up dead, raped and/or robbed because I didn’t.

Posted by SC Loftin | Report as abusive

Americans and guns are like babies and candy;it’s bad for them but they don’t care, they want it anyway.Ninety percent of armed crimes are commited with guns obtained in B&E’s from ‘legitimate and honest’gun owners (according to a statistic quoted on the radio from police records).Take away private guns and you take 90% of the new guns off the street.We are not only degrading the safety of Ameicans with our gun fetish but because of blackmarket gun running to Canada and Mexico we are endangering our neighbours.There is no real argument for handguns,only an infantile lack of urge control.

Posted by gary cooper | Report as abusive

So Ian, you’re saying that if you woke and found someone burglarizing your home and potentially threatening your family you wouldn’t do anything to stop them? I don’t own a gun, but having been raised to respect firearms and the rights of the American people I am hard pressed to accept the words of your last paragraph.

“B. Free” for all the hiding behind a screen name did not condone ‘manslaughter’- shame on you for putting words in other peoples’ mouths.

If you are content to let a thief walk off with the things you have worked hard for in life, by all means, go right ahead. Me, I’m using anything at my disposal- be it a table lamp or a baseball bat to make my point to the criminal. Not to kill them, but to stop them.

Posted by Julie Evans | Report as abusive

Stopping a robber is not manslaughter, nor a crime, it is justice. People have a right to defend one’s property, with deadly force if necessary.

Making criminals, especially ones interrupted in the act and clearly guilty, seem like innocent victims a caricature of the values this country was founded on. We resisted, with deadly force, the Crown’s tyranny. We should also resist the tyranny of our fellow man.

Only a morally and ethically bankrupt person suggests that we should stand by and allow criminals to take away our property without so much as raising a finger in self defense. Personal dignity and liberty is more important than survival.

Posted by Michael Paulson | Report as abusive

It all comes down to whether or not you believe in private property rights and what value you assign to human life. Those values are going to be different for everybody, and rightly so, as we’re all individuals.

I would not presume to force my values upon you or consider you “wacky” for the values you hold, in return, I’d expect the same level of respect.

Posted by Uncle Jeff | Report as abusive

Ian – are you suggesting that more gun owners means more man slaughter? This makes zero sense really, since the statistics do not bear that out. 80% of all crimes are done with illegally obtained guns. Another 10% are committed with guns stolen from people who bought them legally. The reality is that responsible gun owners are safe. And if one of those gun owners shoots and kills a robber trying to steal from them, or hurt their family, it is certainly not man slaughter but justifiable homicide. Gun laws have never and will never stop criminals, because criminals will find a way. If gun were outlawed, killers would still kill and robbers would still steal. They would just devise devices that fit their needs. The dark underworld would just build their own guns and kill innocent people with those. Then people could not complain that the blood is on the hands of the gun makers now could they?

Posted by Robert Preston | Report as abusive

Ian,

Shooting a person that is in the commission of a violent crime is NOT the crime of manslaughter, it is SELF DEFENSE. This may be a foreign concept to you. I voted for Obama, but this liberal Brady-esque view of gun control never made sense. We’ve banned drugs and alcohol, and I think you have a clue as to how well prohibition works. You’re suggesting that we add one more item to the black marketeers list of wares. Incredible!!

Posted by Charles Teasley | Report as abusive

A typical piece of Mr. Debusmann’s – dark, foreboding, and totally devoid of insight. Mr. D, in the words of my father..”Do you come with a solution or are you just another part of the problem?”

Posted by Sam Meyer | Report as abusive

I personally choose not to own a gun. But if you want to own a gun, go for it. Guns don’t kill people, guns are deadly weapons people use to kill people. I think Canada has more guns per-capita than the US yet has fewer gun based murders per-capita than the US. So it seems like the problem with gun violence is more complicated than the availability of guns. IMHO.

Posted by Josef | Report as abusive

most everybody likes to think they are in the ‘middle class’…um, i recall the 1960′s and what middle class was back then. those times are gone.

Posted by d | Report as abusive

Ian, nice cheap try at B. Free. It’s not about being frightened. It’s called smart. And I’m pretty sure B. Free’s comment was that an armed and gun smart citizen has a better chance stopping a crime against him/her. It’s about strong self defense. Looking down the wrong end of a 45 tends to get the attention of thieves, punks & would-be criminals.

Since your post says you’re a lib,(nice slap at Repubs ;), here’s your free education on gun control:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3L3kMuN8s jk

My bet is that you’d become a gun advocate in a heart beat if your wife woke you at 2:00 am to whisper that an intruder was about to enter your room.

Posted by BIlly C | Report as abusive

Funny, Germany has some of the most strict gun laws in the world and they just had a shooting spree that only ended with the shooter’s suicide.
People were murdered before firearms and will be murdered after firearms. Murder is a social ill and has NEVER been legitimately equated with gun ownership levels. Homogenous levels and political stability have much more affect on murder rates than gun ownership. If gun laws reduced crime, why then is DC the murder capital of the US? It has the most strict gun laws in the nation?
Beyond all of these arguments, the second ammendment is not about murder or even hunting for that matter. Read the Federalist Papers and you will see that Madison and fellows detailed their thinking behind the second ammendment. An unarmed populace is an enslaved one.

Posted by becolby | Report as abusive

gary cooper: People who get their guns stolen are not acting responsibly with their firearm, simple as that. It is sad that people who get something stolen (the victim of the crime) by those who would disarm them. You seem to assume that the fact that people are victimized and robbed, are at fault for that crime against them. Yes their guns should have been in a locked safe, but that very fact should alert you to the problem in America. You would rather people not have guns, because that way when they are robbed the criminal gets no deadly weapons out of it. 90% of the stolen guns are crimes of convenience, in other words the criminal did not go there seeking a gun, but got lucky and found it. Why? Because guns have resale value and B&E criminals are looking for money.

So should we also take all the knives out of our kitchens? And all the axes and saws and drills from our garages? What about baseball bats, hockey sticks, tire irons, lawn darts, BBQ Skewers and anti freeze? Any one of those things can be used to kill a person, yet we all have them. So why do people assume that taking away guns will take away crime? It won’t and only ignorance would say that it might. Do you know how most homicides are committed? BFT or Blunt Force Trauma. Which can be done with just about anything from a fireplace poker to a rock. And you can bet that if there were no guns, criminals would just kill you with one of those in a second.

I don’t know what is wrong with America, I don’t know why we are so violent. But the fact is that we are. And until that is long gone the need to protect yourself and family is there. The police do all they can, but they are reactionary by nature. They usually arrive after the bad stuff has already happened, so expecting them to be your 1st line of security is a mistake some people cannot afford to make.

Guns are not the problem. There are just as many guns per person in Canada as their is in the USA and they do not have our problem with crime. People need to learn that this entire anti-gun mentality is no longer fooling anyone……Democrats and Republicans both see this now. This is part of the reason for the increase of gun sales. For 30 years the government has been making it tougher to get guns, and adding in more laws and regulations, yet violent and random acts of crime had not gone away, not in the slightest. As one city’s stats go down, another one goes up.

Legal and responsible, and trained gun owners are choosing to take a precaution. If you choose to not take such precautions fine, but don’t tell others that they cannot.

Posted by Robert Preston | Report as abusive

Gee Ian, I didn’t hear B. Free mention the exact type of crime and I’m pretty sure the crime implied to be prevented would be a violent one. Perhaps attempted rape is justification for a potential victim to use deadly force? No? How about if the “theft” is armed robbery? If a thief pulls a gun on you do you have the right to protect yourself with a gun?

Your reasoning is quite off if you think someone defending herself from a violent crime would be punished with manslaughter.

Posted by P. Kellogg | Report as abusive

From a Gun owner and economic casualty…

I think that it is a good thing for the well off to get nervous about the people who used to work for them who are well armed and pissed off. The reason we have the right to bear arms is that it is precisely that right which perpetuates the revolutionary ideals that made this Republic possible. I can hear echoes of the lamentations of the British 270+ years ago waxing self rightious about how the colonists would be so much more easy to manage if they didn’t have so many guns.

Some closing words from famous psychic Thomas Jefferson:

“If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation then by deflation, the banks and the corporations that will grow up around them, will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.\” – Thomas Jefferson

Posted by Kevin Kiernan | Report as abusive

Buying a gun actually reduces your chance for safety… UNLESS you actually learn to use it. I don’t mean taking it to the range a few times, I mean sign up for a class. Start with a class that teaches you how to handle, fire, and clean your gun. Then take a class that teaches you basic gun combat (once a gun is fired you are in combat whether you like it or not… this is a fight you do not want to loose). Like any other treacherous weapon from cars to nukes, appropriate training is essential to safe and effective handling. I for one think ALL guns should be legal, they are just tools… but I believe each firearm owner should be required to take at least 15 hours of training with their weapon before they can take it home for first time buyers and one hour refresher for multi gun owners along with refreshers whenever you renew permits. An armed society is a polite society, but we don’t want people pulling a Plexico or worse yet killing someone on accident.

Posted by Adam Cagle | Report as abusive

This may be an American Frontierman’s reaction, and most of these guns will be intended for defense. There are however a lot of sad people suffering financial distress, who will be throwing themselves off the top of tall buidings, and no doubt a lot of people enjoying, perhaps undeserved, rising financial success, are going to be shot. Any public information, news or pronouncements have to be of a moderating, and hopeful influence. Everybody needs hope.
Sincerely…..John T.

Posted by John Turnbull | Report as abusive

Interesting story. I agree– guns are legal, and one has the right to own one GIVEN that they register it, do the background checks etc. AND LEARN HOW TO USE IT..

What I find continually fascinating is— the people who will SCREAM at you about the 2nd Amendment — CONVENIENTLY skip the part of it that says ” A well regulated militia”!!

To me that is very clear — we need perhaps a Switzerland-style situation where the GOVERNMENT handles a logical, basic TRAINING course that also registers you as a “TRAINED USER”. What I just described it EXACTLY, PRECISELY what we do for driving cars — why not do the same for a TOOL THAT CAN KILL YOU?

“They” only read the part they like — the part that says “the right to bear arms”. We need to all remind them of the REST OF THE AMENDMENT!!

Posted by Andre' Cholmondeley | Report as abusive

A friend of mine recently said I should move to New Zealand, buy a farm and put up a large electric fence – at the time he said I looked at him as though he had two heads. Looking at these gun statistics, I’m now looking for the property.

Posted by Richard Williams | Report as abusive

So Bernd Debusmann has issues with guns, or more so, with gun owners. You know the type; “redneck”,beer guzzling,NASCAR fanatic. The Southern “Redneck” who likes nothing more than to down 4 or 5 shots of “Jack” and then go huntin’. I could go on with the wretched and bigoted stereotypes that Southerners have endured for a long,long time. The fact is Southerners have respect for firearms and respect for their families and friends;they are not the “gun problem”. If you study gangs in the “Inner Cities” or the “hood” you’ll see where most of the gun violence is coming from.
To stem the tide of “gun violence” Boston Mayor “Mumbles” Menino decided to sue the gun manufacturers out of business. This charade has been played out in several cities, only to be shot down by the courts. But the response has been not to name the source of the problem but to punish law abiding citizens for owning guns. Liberals will go to no end to protect their “pet rock”;African Americans. Blacks will not be abandoned by their liberal benefactors, even if it means slandering white America. So lets cut the bull and look at 2nd Amendment issues clearly without resorting to “Michael Moore 6th grade logic”.

Posted by Xmossad | Report as abusive

The Second Amendment is an example of brilliant foresight by the founding fathers of the United States of America. It foresaw the day when it would be necessary for the common citizens to be able to overthrow a government that has gotten so far out of touch with the values of the average citizen that it no longer workable. What you see is democracy at work with bumps in the road along the way. We are headed towards one of those at this time.

Posted by Bob | Report as abusive

Ian.

You’re making completely unsupportable assumptions.

First, while B.Free may indeed be a pseudonym, you don’t really have any idea whether it is or not. Regardless, it’s perfectly reasonable for B.Free to want to protect her identity, so as not to have to deal with opinionated, negative people who don’t really know what they’re talking about. Or, simply because she chooses to exercise her right to anonymity. She doesn’t have to have a reason.

B.Free is right about the incidence of crime committed with legally acquired firearms. It is extremely low. Gun crime is very nearly always committed using illegally acquired weapons.

And, there *is* an inverse correlation when reviewing the incidence of both theft and violent crime in areas where gun ownership is noticeably increased. As legal gun ownership increases, theft and violent crime decreases.

(Yes, correlation. Not cause. But, you can look at the decrease of incidents in the area in question, and compare it to the incidence of such crimes not just in the areas in question, but also surrounding areas without an increase in gun ownership to make reasonable and meaningful comparisons.)

Second, there’s no “‘trading’ of theft for manslaughter” here.

We’re not talking about vigilantism. Just self-defense.

If you knew anything about home self-defense or concealed carry laws, you’d be aware that in the vast majority of jurisdictions, they do NOT permit the use of force to protect property, merely the use of force as a LAST resort specifically to protect someone in cases where they believe they are in “immanent danger of death or serious bodily harm”. And, serious bodily harm is just that. It doesn’t cover simply being assaulted. It’s for when you may be assaulted in a way from which you may never recover.

At worst, that’s ‘trading’ a case of aggravated assault or murder for an act of self-defense. At best, there’s no act of violence at all. Instead they may deter a crime from occurring. (Sadly, there’s no good way to track incidents where a crime that might have otherwise taken place doesn’t, so there’s no way to really provide hard data for that.)

It’s also worth pointing out, before you go down the path of “that’s what the police are for”, that the supreme court upheld lower court rulings finding against a woman tried to sure her police department for failing to fulfill their duty to “defend and protect” her when she and other female friends were held and raped in her apartment over a period of multiple days after she called 911 to report they were being assaulted. (Units were dispatched, but did not enter her apartment because they did not hear anything, so they did not feel they had probable cause to enter.) The court ruled in favor of the police, stating that no duty exists on the part of the police to “defend and protect” any private individual.

This isn’t necessarily a case of negligence on the part of the police. It just clearly illustrates that they can’t be everywhere at once, and that they can only do so much.

Even in instances where the police might try to intervene, they are usually several minutes away, so they have no ability to intervene in situations of extreme danger before it is much too late. Ultimately, we all have to be responsible for our own defense, as well as being responsible citizens in our own turn when measuring an appropriate response to any given situation.

So, while you’re right that no one’s wallet is worth another person’s life, conversely, you’re wrong in assuming that that’s what B.Free is talking about.

If necessary, it’s possible that she may be able to prevent someone from raping and murdering her, and in that case using force to do so on her part is justified.
Hopefully, that will never be the case.

But, if it does come to that, if the government, and the vast majority of individuals represented didn’t think there were occasions where that level of force was justified, then police officers wouldn’t be permitted to carry guns, either. (No police department or armed government agency has a ‘shoot to wound’ policy.)

It’s not the gun that’s the problem here. It’s human nature. And, if it wasn’t guns, it would be knives. And if it wasn’t knives it would be sticks. And if it wasn’t sticks it would be rocks. Or something else. All of which favor a larger male attacker, not B.Free.

Removing a defensive weapon doesn’t make things better. It makes things worse. Anything can be a weapon. What makes it so is intent. What’s at issue here is intent. Just because someone has a gun, it does not mean they intend to ever use it against someone else. In the case of normal citizens, they hope very hard that they never have a situation where they may have to use it. This is not so in the case of someone with criminal intent. And, if they have such intent, they don’t care whether having a gun is legal. They’ll get one anyway. If a normal citizen can’t have one legally, then the only people who will have them are criminals (who will take advantage of that discrepancy) and, possibly, police, who won’t be able to intervene, because they can’t be everywhere at once.

And, none of us want to live in a police state, so really, we’re all better off that they aren’t everywhere at once. (George Orwell made some very good observations.)

It is a shame that people feel the need to arm themselves
in order to feel safe in their surroundings.
If one takes this route one must seek the proper instructions on how to handle,care for and shoot in the proper conditions.Also,one must be cognizant of the rules and regulations around the country for possession and use of firearms-good luck

The Wall St. felons and feckless politicians have need to worry about the wrath of the American citizens. The American dream of own a home has, for many, been reconfigured as surviving in a tent city. The actions of these criminals has established a pattern which will ultimately lead to most of us living under conditions similar to those in Darfur. Both the workers and the middle class are on the road to extinction. While owning a gun might not do any good at this this time it is unlikely to do any harm.

Posted by SamColt | Report as abusive

There has been a big increase in black bear damage to property in my area, so over the last 6 months I have purchased 3 guns: a single shot survival 12 gauge shotgun for the Jeep, a pump action shotgun for my remote cabin and an AK-47 clone called a WASR 10 that has a magazine that holds 30 bullets. The WASR-10 will never be fired.

Why?

Each time I was in the store I was told by customers that they were purchasing weapons that would be banned if the anti-assault rifle law was reinstated or a handgun ban was attempted by the new administration. The first time I heard this, the WASR-10 was $400, the second time it was $500. I returned on a lark to see what the WASR-10 was priced at about a month after I bought the pump shotgun and there was one left: $599. I bought it on the spot, as an investment. While waiting for the background check to be completed the store owner brought out 2 new WASR-10′s for sale… priced at $645. A man who had walked in after me sighed and picked one up and got in line. He smiled at me and said that he had been forced to sell his M-16 clone for $1500 because he needed the money, he had bought it for $600 several years ago. He said that the way things were going the best way to preserve his cash was to buy another gun.

Moral of this story? If any of the writers of these sensationalistic articles was an actual journalist they would have actually gone to a gun store or two and asked questions of the people buying the guns. There is no doubt in my mind that people are purchasing guns at record rates because they are – first: a great investment; second: pay a dividend in providing comfort against the unknown.

Posted by Art Fuller | Report as abusive

To Josef,

The most recent study I’ve found (http://www.guncontrol.ca/Content/Cda-US .htm, 1997) states that gun ownership per capita in Canada was .25/person while in the States, it was .82/person, about 3.3 times as many guns per capita.

This has led to 14.5x more deaths by handguns in the States than in Canada, where handguns are restricted weapons (www.guncontrol.ca). The study seems to argue that there is a direct correlation between gun ownership and firearms deaths.

Posted by Michael Mazur | Report as abusive

When asked why do I carry a gun I reply because I can’t carry a cop

One thing that seems to tie many gun owners together is fear.

There seems to be a lot of abstract fear in these communities which is not healthy. What can we do to reassure these people and bring them into a more honest and productive debate?

While we were arguing amongst our selfs, we saw many egregious abuses of civil liberties which went unanswered by the very people who hold up the constitution as the bastion of all that is well and good. Why didn’t you use your guns then?

Posted by Tom | Report as abusive

were not fearing hes going to tighten gun control he already is

Posted by Bob | Report as abusive

““What is really remarkable about all this is that there hasn’t been social unrest…”

That’s because the useful idiots on the left, whose job it is to foment civil unrest, don’t want to do it in the freezing winter cold. Once summer gets here, I imagine we’ll see some riots that’ll make some Latin America countries green with envy.

Posted by Larry | Report as abusive

The firearms rights issue is not remotely related to firearms; it is a simple property-rights issue. That is to say, a man’s possession of firearms does not require the existence of any specific right; without physically invading him, we have no way to know whether or not he has chosen to do so. Conversely, in order to enforce the assertion that ownership of a firearm is not a man’s inherent right, it is first required that we invade him to learn whether he is in possession; once this initial aggression has been undertaken, a further invasion is necessary to forcefully divest him of his property. In doing so, we are not only acting with violence to confiscate the property of a peaceful and innocent party, but we have also turned an otherwise law-abiding individual into a criminal in the eyes of the law.

As such, it should be obvious, when we contrast those who wish to own firearms with those who wish to restrict the ownership of such, which is the inherently-violent group.

Posted by JD | Report as abusive

There is a current drug war going on in Mexico with 6,000 deaths just last year that could represent perhaps three or four percent of those increases. We’ve entered a negative feedback loop. Articles in this nature as well as the economy as a whole induce fear and anxiety and the cycle repeats itself. Also guns are usually good barter items. People afriad of economic collapse are buying these so they can continue to feed themselves when the grocery store runs out of food.

Posted by Jared Heltemes | Report as abusive

Interesting topic, I would love to see it analyzed further as a couple other posters mentioned. Are these across the board increases in gun purchases, or does it focus in certain parts of the country, or certain types of firearms, the potential for more information is intriguing. The economy is sucking, the world is always changing throughout time, but right now most people would agree its a time of uncertainty across the spectrum of humanity rich and poor alike.
I believe this would be a good time to learn to use firearms and to consider ownership if you don’t practice it already. Times are tough, there are no guarantees in life but death and taxes, and who knows maybe the fat cats have overstepped to far this time, and something will light the fuse, some issue or event and when that hits you want to be ready. Ready to either participate or to defend yourself against those who might try to profit from unstable times. Either way better to have a gun and know how to use it, and never have to use it, then to need a gun and not have one.
As far as those that would argue, ban all guns and no problemo, some guy even posted that 90% of guns in America involved in crime are from legal purchases. Well what about that 10% that still gains access or has guns due to illegal means? I am sure they would be quite satisfied knowing the rest of the populace is unarmed.

Posted by Chris | Report as abusive

The reason why we have guns is to fight back against our government in the instance if they choose to destroy our inalienable rights of citizens in this country. Its called the 2nd amendment and our founding fathers made it clear to have it in the constitution. If drastic changes are made within the next years, I highly suggest everyone buy a gun to defend themselves, also alot of ramen noodles.

Posted by jp | Report as abusive

The reason there isn’t social unrest is because the American people are afraid. A fear of the enormous U.S. government keeps people from speaking out, the government that tosses around TRILLIONS of dollars could easily trample violent civil unrest. We are experiencing the end of civil liberties in congruence with the rise of big government.

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive

Violence is not the answer! We CAN exact societal “vengeance” against primary parasites, like Henry Paulson, Charles Prince, E. Stanley O’Neal, etc. by using the existing laws!

There is an article, written by a securities fraud lawyer, who outlines, in layman’s terms, how we can use existing laws, already on the books, to sue these big bank executives, including the ones at Goldman Sachs and AIG, claw back our money, bankrupt them, and, maybe, even put some of them in jail.

Unlike gun violence, which will just get you thrown in jail, the article outlines a method by which vengeance can be had against these banksters.

It was published today on Seekingalpha.com and I think it could prove to be one of the most important articles of the year. People should follow its prescription, and write their Congressmen to ask for a coordinated legal attack on the den of thieves in NYC.

This article is a MUST READ! Here is the URL:

http://seekingalpha.com/article/126814-w ill-we-see-more-lawsuits-against-the-inv estment-banks

Posted by JohnMD | Report as abusive

If there is, as some claim, a civil war on the horizon in the US, perhaps the folks on the political Left should remember that it’s the folks on the Right who own most of the firearms. They should also remember that roughly two-thirds of the US military identifies with the Right rather than the Left. Soldiers swear an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States, against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
I believe the Second Amendment is part of the Constitution. If any administration regardless of party attempts to use the US military to enforce illegal actions (such as confiscation of legally owned firearms) there will be soldiers who will in good conscience disobey illegal orders. They are, IIRC, required to do so by the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ.) The “Nuremberg Defense” – claiming to have been “just following orders”- doesn’t fly. So President Obama may want to do all sorts of things, but if he doesn’t have the support of the US military, he’s going to find he has a very short reach.

Posted by Mark Stockman | Report as abusive

While this article is quite interesting, I still cannot understand why so many people, journalists included, confuse wealth with money.

Bill Gates could sell his estate and move into a cardboard box on a street corner tomorrow. He’d acquire nothing less than several tens of millions of dollars for it. Even so, he’s still be living in a cardboard box!

Wealth can be thought of as a monosyllabic synonym for “opulence”, which means, in short, the real-world possessions in your control. Well, OK, the cash is in your possession, but really, it’s not providing a benefit just sitting in an account. Cash not applied (e.g., not spent on goods or services rendered) is merely potential power, not actual wealth.

I’d like to remind everyone, journalists included, of this distinction. Without a consistent and rational vocabulary, discussing the problems of the economy and finding real-world solutions cannot occur with any degree of meaning.

Posted by Samuel A. Falvo II | Report as abusive

Debussman is only partially right on the “panic buying” of guns since the election. It is happening, and I see it in the near-unavailability of ammunition in certain calibers right now. People do believe that the Obama regime’s ultimate goal is the abrogation of the 2nd amendment “despite campaign promises to the contrary” because people know exactly how much they can trust campaign promises. If Obama had shown his true colors on gun control, there’s agood chance he would have lost the election. The only thing slowing down enactment of strict new gun laws is that Congress knows what often happens to gun-banning Congressmen on Election Day

Posted by Propwash | Report as abusive

It’s perfectly logical to buy guns now. With Democrats in control of Congress and the White House it’s only a matter of time before new legislation arrives making it more difficult to buy guns. That increases the value of existing guns, no matter where one stands on the 2nd Amendment.

Posted by Greg | Report as abusive

Gary Cooper, you have got to be kidding me. 90%? That’s quite a statistic. Complete lard, but quite a statistic. Yes, disarming society would be a great idea. Protect our neighbors and our bordering countries. Especially when we adapt their socialist\facist governments and the jack booted thugs come and take your neighbors for an all expenses paid trip on the train to tour the power plants of the country. Of course it’s part of the green plan to burn people instead of coal. Yes, that sounds crazy, but nobody did anything about it in 1930′s Germany because, you got it, they had all been disarmed. If you also believe that history has been distorted and is inaccurate, you need only look at modern day Australia where crime has skyrocketed since all law abiding citizens sere required to turn over their firearms. Get a clue.

Posted by chris taylor | Report as abusive

This increase in demand has also driven the prices up considerably. I bought Romanian AK47 a year ago for $400, and 1000 rounds of ammunition for under $300. Now the same weapon sells for over $700, if you can find any in stock, and the price of ammo has more than doubled. It’s unfortunate that the gun industry had turned on it’s own to make a larger profit during these already troubling times.

Posted by Danny Vander | Report as abusive

When people have no food in thier bellies. They will acquire guns before they apply for permits.

Posted by Steven Iannarelli | Report as abusive

I have to admit, reports like these scare me a bit, for the nation as a whole. We have a black president, so what racist and angry people there are in this country will probably blame the good man despite his heroic efforts. On top of that you have others who are furious over bailouts to banking execs who go ahead and pay themselves hundreds of millions of that money, people who have lost their jobs and their lives, and people who have seen their money and standard of living vanish. Adding insult to injury there continue to be well paid media outlets that blame all these problems on Americans being lazy and who claim we need more foreigners in the country to work things.

It’s one of those French Revolution scenarios, except I’ll warrant there will be nothing French about it should it boil over.

Posted by Jason P. | Report as abusive

Bernd Debusmann states:
Gun sales shot up almost immediately after Barack Obama won the U.S. presidential elections on November 4 and firearm enthusiasts rushed to stores, fearing he would tighten gun controls despite campaign pledges to the contrary.

Obama also said:
5 days of public comment before signing bills
Bills will be on the internet for 48 hours to review
That his father was a goat herder
That he was a Constitutional lawyer
That he was a professor of law
That he will not have lobbyists
That he will not take PAC money
That he will use public funds for his campaign.
That he never heard or witnessed the words that Jeremiah Wright uses.
That is not the Toney Rezko that he knows.
That he only had tea at Bill Ares house
He does not take money from lobbyist.
That his family has strong ties to African Freedom fighters.
A Life Magazine Article Changed his Outlook On Life.
That he won’t run on a national ticket In ‘08.
Present Votes Are Common In Illinois.
That he passed 900 Bills in the State Senate.

But hey, lets take his word on it………………..

Posted by LJ | Report as abusive

It is not that the mood is dark in america, it is because of who is president and the individuals in control of congress. The Constitution will not bother them trying to ban firearm sales in our country. ikeo

Posted by jon buckalew | Report as abusive

You’re absolutely right Greg. Its an unfortunate reason why citizens have to arm themselves but its just fantastic that people are taking in interest in protecting themselves. Since then the FBI has recorded a massive drop in crimes involving a firearm because more law-abiding citizens have guns now. Its just great!

Posted by Shaun | Report as abusive

A cynical person might say Obama made promises not to tighten gun laws because he knew the Democratic congress would do it for him. A realistic person would say a politician will say anything to get elected, including: I will veto any earmarks, I will bring the troops home from Iraq, I will not tighten gun laws.

Posted by Mark D | Report as abusive

would you protect your family when they come to put people in camps?
America and the UK are turning into a police survailence/nanny states.
If I lived in those places I would get a farm and a shot gun to.

Posted by Josh | Report as abusive

Mr. Falvo II says:
“Well, OK, the cash is in your possession, but really, it’s not providing a benefit just sitting in an account. Cash not applied (e.g., not spent on goods or services rendered) is merely potential power, not actual wealth.”

That makes me wonder why I saved for retirement. Maybe I should spend all the money in my retirement account, go bankrupt and sign up for the public dole. Or may I assume that some “accounts” are exempt from this rule?

Posted by Ray | Report as abusive

@Debusman,

Well, what do you expect? Anyone who studies history knows where this senario is going. Those in the populace who bought guns or are planning to are gearing up for conflict. The writing has been on the wall since Bush took office and as long as Obhama is happy to continue his policies what proof do we have that things will get better? None is the answer.

The slaves are thumbing their nose at the masters. They’re fed up with the political double-speak and empty promises. They’re tired of getting the taser for just asking questions. The slaves have had it with inflatinoary taxation and the bleeding dry of our purchasing power. If I were one of the masters I’d start thinking of ways to suck up to the people and giving back everything they’ve stolen from us. But they’re not about to do that, we know. So we’re buying guns and ammo, implementing the option left to us.

Posted by NRB | Report as abusive

Firearms are commonly used in self-defense in the US. This is well-documented and not a matter of nopinion. It normally doesn’t involve actual shooting.
Consider that criminals are brazen and the economic collapse of the US will drive more crime. It makes perfect sense to be armed because it is impossible for police to do more than react to crime. You either fight back and risk injury or surrender and trust your assailant to be nice to you. Democrats, especially AG Holder, prefer criminals (who they see as victims) to their victims (who they don’t identify with until they are mugged) and have always been desperate to disarm Americans who aren’t part of their desired police state.

Posted by Sejano | Report as abusive

There are reasons guns purchases are increasing:

1. Police, in most cases arrive after a crime has been committed, not before or during.

2. The right to own a gun is being threatened. If I knew my purchase of a gun could be easily secured in the future in a legal manner, I wouldn’t rush to buy one today.

3. With a poor economy, crime naturally rises thus more will feel the need to have some personal protection.

Because of these factors above, I personally will be looking for the first time into buying a gun.

Posted by Adam | Report as abusive

The right to bear arms… Should have been the right to bare arms or bear alms… If the founding fathers could see them now they would be horrified. Guys, you beat King george, massacred the indians and now you’re turning on your own… What a poor pathetic country the US is, terrified of its own democracy.

Posted by DD | Report as abusive

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that people are afraid that Obama is going to take away their right to bear arms! My own son plans to buy a gun just in case this happens!

Posted by Rudy | Report as abusive

Dear Michael (the gun control advocate):

There are 14.5x more handgun deaths in the U.S. than Canada & somehow that’s a gun control problem? Do the math: there are 9 times more people in the US than in Canada (300million vs 33 million) & over 3x the guns per capita (.82 vs .25). So if we were comparing “gun for gun” the quantity of handgun deaths in the U.S. vs. Canada should be 9×3 (population & total guns available) i.e. 27 times times the amount of gun deaths in canada. So, gun for gun, 14.5 times more deaths per capita in the U.S. is actually about 40% less than Canada.

Posted by Ryan Washburn | Report as abusive

Guess there’s no research before writing an article other than watching Oprah; typical from most so called journalists today. The tent city in Sacremento was not filled from the ranks of the recently homeless, but the chronically homeless…huge difference.

As for the Guns comment(s) LJ gave an articulate and pointed reference to many things reported that would never happen, but did.

Australia disarmed its’ citizenry and politicians are befuddled at why the crime rate went up??? Americans have some references to many things that were said in recent and not so recent times in other countries lulling the populace to sleep about their rights and protection.

Remember, when seconds count a cop is minutes away…

I’d rather stand on the 2nd Amendment and deal with it myself as would most of my contemporaries…bad guys don’t want anything to do with someone who fights back.

Our idea of gun control is hitting what you aim at!

Posted by Ben | Report as abusive

Also, as B Hussein continues his assault on the dollar, it’s been suggested that rifle and pistol cartridges might become America’s unofficial currency. They have intrinsic value (unlike the federal reserve note) and have an actual, real world usefulness.

Gold or silver would be better, but government has a record of harassing those who attempt to coin gold and silver money privately. Can’t stand the competition, I guess.

FACTS: 223 (5.56) AR assault weapon ammo is running 4-6 month wait. If you can find an AR, it’ll be inflated to almost double. Almost any self defense ammo, firearms are almost impossible to find. Shotguns are preferable over handguns for home defense. Owning a firearm no more makes you armed than owning a piano makes you a musician. If you buy one, it is MANDATORY to receive education on both criminal AND civil ramnifications, and proper technique is not an option. Bad guys are very good with guns, you have got to be BETTER, or you’re dead.

Posted by AVI8TR | Report as abusive

I look at owning a gun as I do getting an insurance policy: it’s a lot of money for something that you’ll probably never need anyway. Which is I why I’ve never gotten one. But, I’ve been meaning to. … If I do, I want you all to know that it’s something I’ve been putting off and am just getting around to. I’m not panicked. Really!

An interesting statistic, I wonder what the correlation is with firearm purchases in other times of anxiety and high social stress in this country. In this era of sublimated values and a focus on individuality over a national identity this is a troubling development. We have excellent programs established to inculcate citizens with an inherent fear of civil protest of the violent kind, but even these programs have been shown, historically, to have a point where the law of diminishing returns assumes primacy. That point is far away from now if, and it is a big if, current conditions do not deteriorate. History has shown that a large population of uneducated, indigent, and angry people within any society is a breeding ground for unrest. If the conditions do deteriorate we have two options, the first is to establish a real police state, not to be confused with the police state that some paranoid twits insist exists now for if they had ever seen a real police state, and lived to tell the tale, they would understand the difference. The second would be to begin being honest with ourselves politically and abandon the non-issue focused one-party debate driven system we currently use and embrace a system based on reality. Hopefully we will be allowed to continue being blissfully ignorant and never have to make that hard choice, but we must be prepared to face it should it come to pass.

Posted by Jed | Report as abusive

Bernd Debusmann, author of the above article, represents the media. He has empathy for a subject as if it were paint. Where is his anger? He thinks his job is more important folks. Do the citizens of this country have a right to feel extremely disappointed in our government. Mr. Debusmann, I know that within my circle of friends, the anger has passed. The anxiety is something that must simply be swallowed as we realize that any government capable of creating such a massive economic mess is also blind, and bound to worsen the situation. Consider that our inept government will not consider minimizing it’s own money sucking growth. The life blood of the working stiff is below the level of his tax burden. That federal employees have had the greatest benefit programs, sweetest working conditions and earliest retirement benifits over their private sector counter-parts, yet they are paid by us 10 buck an hour saps who have more fees, taxes, school kid expenses, work licensing fees, God I could go on for pages! I’m thinking: If I have a gun I will be able to protect myself to a greater extent than I can without one. If I have a proper gun I can hunt for food (I live in Oregon). If I have a gun and find myself in a very dangerous situation, I will be better able to negotiate a safe exit. I am quickly becoming convinced that our economy will have a short term benefit from all this tremendous government spending but soon thereafter, as the eye of the storm causes many to lose their anxiety, those trillions will unleash in the form of inflation that will devastate those unaware and unprepared. Just as a sunami follows an earthquake. Since my government will not warn the people of the possible consequences of this largest disaster to come, I can only urge any who read this to buy at least one gun and plenty of ammo. A 22 caliber should only be a second gun. You’ll need something like a hunting rifle too. Google for what you should be looking for. Whatever you do, DO NOT TRUST YOUR GOVERNMENT.

Posted by picomanning | Report as abusive

The lack of jobs are the issue. People told me that the “wise” men of the Private (oh, I mean Federal) reserve were too smart to allow another depression. Well, many think they are not that stupid, thus the reason why all the guns (not just from fear of uncertainty, but of the reality of uncertainty).

The solution is in the creation of jobs and no better place to start is by promoting fits, that is feed in tariffs! Yes, for SOLAR ENERGY! Gainesville has just enacted such and now, jobs are being created just by erecting solar PV! If half of the country put solar on their rooftops, the other half would have a hard time keeping up with needed production. If a whopping 20% of electricity came from such, the rates would only be slightly higher as feed ins would be reduced to just above “normal” utility rates. (No need for arguments here since the jobs and a good economy, not to mention the “green” benefits more than justify the few extra bucks for the electric bill).

Another way to bolster the economy is for nimby’s to “allow” the building of more high powerlines and largescale concentrated solar thermal power. They would put lots of mirrors on the desert and would retain the heat of the focused sunlight almost indefinitely, until used for generation. Hence almost 24/7 power from a not so 24/7 source! A lesser feed in tariff might be needed to promote these jobs too but that’s much better than sinking literally billions into “weatherizing federal buildings” and such.

Germany is the “founder” of modern day successful feed in tariffs. Even though they pay up to FIVE times the normal rate, each’s bill is only about $4 to $5 dollars more per month. This also includes other renewables like wind. SO, if Germany can do it (with constantly cloudy weather), so can we!

From there, the electric future will require the building of electric cars, something that Obama should force any would be recipient provider to build!

Also, we should temporarily eradicate all insurance laws just so people can afford this transition. Thus if Obama was really on our side, he would do just that! Obviously, created goods like mirrors, PV or electric cars (and guns)are FAR more productive than non real things like state law required car insurance, thus in depression times, ALL THE FOCUS should only be upon real goods made in what should still be a real country!

Buy guns for your ignorant reasons and fear. They are four times more likely to be used on a friend or family member. If you don’t get that Darwin has your answer.

Posted by Matt | Report as abusive

You are stupid. Americans buy guns strictly out of fear. Period. It has nothing to do with the economy or anything else. Also these tent cities do not exist, they’re a fabrication of the media. Quit telling lies.

Posted by Jeff | Report as abusive

If fire-arms are openly circulating in your country or region then the best way to react such dislocation is to leave your region or country if you can, and settle in a physically less dangerous one.

Posted by Gunnar | Report as abusive

I am going to assume that all the people discussing whether or not you are defending property or self have never been attacked before, because in a severe situation, there is no time to decide whether someone ‘Just wants that credenza Granny gave you’, or is going to beat, rape, rob and murder you or yours (this is why you/we are such easy succulent prey). Everything happens so fast, that minute distinctions between ‘real’ or ‘perceived’ threat collapse and you are in instinctive free fall.

In the second situation (BRRM), if you don’t act first, you won’t get a second chance (there is no time to PONDER criminal intent). Still, whether you own a gun or not, some people will never be hard wired to take a life, you could arm them to the teeth, but taking life is not what their life is about (no matter the personal danger). You have the classic ‘freeze’ moment, allowing the criminal to proceed in their chosen fashion. The only way to beat this ‘freeze’ moment out of people is hard physical training, desensitization and repetition. So…if you bought a gun ‘for protection’ I can only hope that you are training your mind as well…otherwise it is a worthless expenditure, that you will not control or utilize in the time of need (in fact you may be a danger to family and loved ones).

I have to admit a fair amount of curiosity about the people who think that in a time of political upheaval or unrest they could ‘hunt for food’. Have you any idea what food supply JIT (just-in-time) inventory is about? In a situation that was a large civil disturbance/unrest 300 million Americans may find themselves without food because of JIT. The only large mammal that North America has in enough abundance to feed anyone for any length of time is humans…?…admittedly, rather gross in concept.

I also have to wonder if you ‘gun and farm’ people understand the anthropological rise of the city/state in human history. The ONLY thing that makes farming viable, IN ANY WAY, is the rise of the city/state. In periods of civil unrest, there is no city/state to protect you (the farmer)…and a few puny guns or even large guns would not protect you from the waves and masses of humanity that would come to rob steal and destroy EVERYTHING in its path to feed and shelter itself. Better to be part of a large gang of well armed nomads who can roam and pick off the weak, struggling and outgunned.

Taking a lesson from Wall Street, ‘You can justify ANY action, afterward, that allows you to survive today. In the triumph, lies the history’.

All criminal acts are the mirror acts of our leaders. If you study the action and morals of our leaders you will find them mirrored in the general populace to an incredible degree.

When our leaders are just, courageous, and exhibit moral character, the country citizens reflects these values back to them (like Pavlov’s dogs, it is an automatic response, you can no more control this, than the rain). Guns are no more a factor in social violence than cabbages or shoe horns. When our leaders are cowards, liars, cheats, torturers, renderers you will see this mirrored in the actions of the citizens too (THAT is the difference between the U.S. and other countries in terms of violent citizen behaviors).

Really, though, what did you expect from a country FOUNDED by common criminals, from the beginning we took the moral low road and we are on it still!

I too, fear for our country and the few brave and good who still inhabit our shores.

Posted by Kiki | Report as abusive

During the great depression/ dust bowl many people left the farms and migrated to the cities. For example many were turned away at the border in the mass migration to California.
Now things are very very different, for a couple reasons
1. Most people live in the big cities.
2. Most people who live in the big cities couldn’t farm if their lives depended on it, and it very well may…
3.Gangs will most likely cause very high crime rates, in said cities..
4.People stuck living in the cities may be treated just as well as the refugees from Katrina..(locked down welfare state, sounds like fun right?)
5.Most of the voters in the big cities voted for Obama..
I believe they will be treated accordingly.People that live in rural America, have been pushed and treated like crap by politicians,wall street and bankers for years and have very long memories.
6.And did I mention… That rural Americans own 90% of the firearms and knows how to use them…
7.You think this can’t happen in America? The U.N just stated that the world needs to find another reserve currency instead of the U.S. Dollar…
We do live in interesting times..

Posted by John Doe | Report as abusive

CLING TO ‘EM!

Posted by john | Report as abusive

I am currently living in New Hampshire, where I moved as a result of the Free State Project (http://freestateproject.org). I have advice for gun owners who are lucky enough (or smart enough) to live in a state, like New Hampshire, that allows Open Carry — carry openly.

This is important for several reasons:

1) Most people who do not own guns only see them when something is wrong. If they run a store, they have people with guns going in and out — all day, every day. But they never know there are guns in their store until somebody sticks one in their face — either a cop harassing them, or a criminal robbing them. So they learn that guns mean trouble. If they are able to *see* the guns carried by the people with whom they have friendly conversations every day, it will help them to become comfortable with the fact that when such people are in their store they are safer then when they are not.

2) Politicians need to be reminded that in America, the people are sovereign. Americans do not exist to serve the State. The state exists to protect our rights. As Jefferson declared, should government fail to perform *it’s* duty, we shall be required to perform ours, and to alter or abolish the form of that government. These words sound shocking, I know, but they have been in the Declaration of Independence for centuries. They’re just not stressed in government schools.

3) An armed individual, carrying openly, may well save lives and never know it. How many people have rethought robbing a store because they saw me walking in with a .357 on my hip? I don’t know. I never will. It could be none, it could be a dozen. But people *will* think twice about committing a crime within sight of an armed, non-criminal, adult. Any criminals that don’t would be well advised to rethink their career path.

All we need is to have a hand gun that ONLY fires from the REGISTERED OWNERS hand. SIMPLE.
1 Prevents accidents; little kids at home can’t fire it when they find it and play with it.
2 Reduces risk; You can’t have it used against you in a fight if it gets taken from you.
3 If stolen, it is worthless bc it won’t fire without registered owner.

Gun manufacturers need to be FORCED to impliment simple technology to make guns safer and less of a target for theives, ESPECIALLY because gun manufacturerres are not held liable for their use. This would be too logical.

Posted by Mark Jepson | Report as abusive

It is the common role of the Intelligencia to rationalize the cruelties of society. They sit atop their make-believe world where everything is OK, looking down from their elevated position and blissfully chuckle at the guy who gets carried off by the KGB, Gestapo, FBI, etc. But they don’t laugh when it happens to them.

It only takes a small percentage of the population to push back state aggression. This is the armed citizenry in case any of you were wondering. And while it may be true that mobs will come after the home garden all it takes is a handfull of armed neighbors banding together to convince them they should prey somewhere else.

As to the fate of the high-bred elite, laying comfortably in bed with the sheets pulled over, they deserve only what they contribute to society… nothing.

Posted by NRB | Report as abusive

I have always found it amazing about the liberals in this country and their bloodlust to take away the gun. When I was 17 they had no problem putting my butt in the military and giving me an automatic weapon and teach me how to use grenades, claymores and LAW rockets, but now that I am older and hopefully a little more mature,I am not responcible enough to own a handgun or semi-auto weapon. They are the ones that need to be banned, not the guns! I intend to keep my guns, even though I no longer hunt and haven’t for years. They are the only thing standing between free america and a police state. Our politicians have become so arrogant now, they think they can cheat us at will and we will take it. I think the time is coming fast that amercians are going to tell them enough is enough and that is why they want our guns, so that we will be defensless to protect our families when they have stolen the rest of what is left of our money and decide to stop them. I think Obama has gotten a wakeup call since the election, when america began arming itself.He has done more for gun sales in this country than the NRA could have ever accomplished.

Technology that restricts the use of the handgun to only the registered user was tried back in the ’90s and it failed horribly. Cops, for one, complained that the electronics in the grip that read the handprint didn’t always reckognize the user’s hand and so would lock the gun. Imagine you’re a cop who draws only to find your gun won’t work because the chip inside can’t read your hand.

Now imagine your house has just been broken into and Dad is laying dead on the floor because the burgler has just shot him. You reach for Dad’s gun to shoot the burgler but it suddenly locks because you’re not Dad. Then the burgler shoots you.

Bad idea.

Posted by NRB | Report as abusive

“March 20th, 2009 4:24 am GMT – Posted by Mark Jepson

All we need is to have a hand gun that ONLY fires from the REGISTERED OWNERS hand. SIMPLE.
1 Prevents accidents; little kids at home can’t fire it when they find it and play with it.
2 Reduces risk; You can’t have it used against you in a fight if it gets taken from you.
3 If stolen, it is worthless bc it won’t fire without registered owner.

Gun manufacturers need to be FORCED to impliment simple technology to make guns safer and less of a target for theives, ESPECIALLY because gun manufacturerres are not held liable for their use. This would be too logical.”

With regards to the above comment.Why does everyone seem to know what we need?????
consider the following a criminal infiltrates a home. The owner of a registered biometric firearm tries to defend his/her family. Loses the gun fight and is killed.
a family member tries to grap the biometric weapon to continue to fight to save their children, the gun does not fire because some idiot designed it that way. Do we really need this???? Do you think a criminal will not obtain a gun that does not have this technology??? do you think that if every gun had this technology that the criminal would not disable it or use a knife or other weapon???
Now you said registered????? why does the government need to know you have a gun???? when this government turns totaritarian, don’t you think some officials will come to your door asking for your gun because you the registered owner is on their list????? HOw are you the civilian militia going to fight and take back your country?
People in this country have become way to passive and concerned with themselves short term gain, that they are allowing our politicians to do what ever they want. In other nations people hold rallies and protests on a regular basis, here these days everyone has forgotten how. And it will lead to a sad end you will see. If nothing is done now, and when everyone finally wakes up, it will take another civil war to restore our liberties.
Its like the fat dog lying on a nail, “it does not hurt bad enough to move”.

Posted by max headroom | Report as abusive

Matt has posted this based upon one of the biased studies promoted in the press, “They are four times more likely to be used on a friend or family member. If you don’t get that Darwin has your answer.” This comes from the study that shocks us with statistics about how many children are killed by their families guns.

Details of the study, however, show that the definition of a child is “up to 25 years of age” and the sample population was a West Coast, inner city area, dominated by latino gangs. Not exactly the typical American scenario except for the unfortunate few who are born into or econommically trapped into living there!

So many of these stats and studies are slanted! Any innocent death is tragic, but propaganda does not serve us well. The truth for many of us is that the police can’t get to us in a timely manner when we really need them, and more innocent kids die in swimming pool accidents that from home gun accidents. Ban swimming pools!

Quote: “Gun sales shot up almost immediately after Barack Obama won the U.S. presidential elections on November 4 and firearm enthusiasts rushed to stores, fearing he would tighten gun controls despite campaign pledges to the contrary.”
*sigh. Are you Americans so entirely racist, fearful of a “black man” (remember kids…his mother was white) in the White House that you think the world has gone crazy? Thank your belief in the fear monger Bush, with his supposed ‘War on Terror’. All I saw was terror for eight years. It started on approx the 1st day of Bush Jr’s tenure as Pres. God Bless a new America in 2009 with a better president, Barack Obama!

Posted by Leishtek | Report as abusive

Matt,

I’m not sure if you just pulled that number out of the air or read it on a liberal, anti-gun website but you’re so off the mark it looks like you’re driving blind…

Riddle me this Batman:

Why is it that the city with the strongest gun control law in the nation had the highest crime rate for many years (D.C.)?

Why is it that Australia’s crime rate is going up since they disarmed the citizens? (Their politicians are still confused on that one, duh?)

Why is the crime rate lower where citizens arm themselves in this country?

Sure, people do stupid and evil things. A lady ran over her cheating husband with a Mercedes. Should we enact anti-Mercedes laws?

You’re right, Darwin did have one correct observation: survival of the fittest (or strongest).

Guess you don’t get out much bud, but quick news flash: The bad guys don’t play nice and they don’t play fair.

One day you’re going to be in a situation where you need to protect yourself or a loved one and your little cell phone won’t help you when you go crying to Daddy government or Mommy police “Help me, help me :(

Quick history lesson: The Japanese didn’t invade the US mainland because their military leader attended Harvard here and new we were armed as a populace. Simply being willing, and able, will diffuse most situations.

You should read the “Art of War” by SunTzu and get your head out of the sand.

Posted by Ben | Report as abusive

The gun debate is a sideline here, a teaser to get you in, a nice stinger at the end. This ISN’T about the gun debate, it’s about OUR frustration with the current social climate we find ourselves in. Big money going to wall street, while joe the plumber can’t get work. Obama’s not fulfilling his campaign promises. Politics, it seems, has caught up with most of america in being color blind. What I find most interesting, and actually kind of sad, is this:

“What is really remarkable about all this is that there hasn’t been social unrest,” remarked an executive with business interests in Latin American countries where riots and street demonstrations in response to economic squeezes are routine. “The conditions for it are all there.”

The question is, Why?

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive

Hey Leishtek,

“Are you Americans so entirely racist, fearful of a “black man””

You don’t get it. It has *absolutely* nothing to do with the color of his skin. It has *everything* to do with his policies and [warped] understanding of the US Constitution and freedom.

That man, throughout his very short career, has proposed laws that would prohibit law-abiding United States citizens from defending themselves and their families with the most effective tool, the firearm. Gun bans do not reduce crime as criminals do not obey the law. Gun bans actually increase crime because the law-abiding citizens have been disarmed by their government.

The Obamanation administration since ceasing control of the government has already publicly stated its intention to ban many guns, manyof which are the most popular…semi-automatic rifles and pistols.

Think I’m wrong? Tell me, how many people have you seen that have publicly stated they are buying firearms because the president has dark skin?

Beuller? Beuller? Beuller?

Posted by Guns Save Lives | Report as abusive

You are mistaken if you think I purchased my guns to defend myself against my fellow citizens. No, I bought them for fear of what my government might do. To quote Thomas Jefferson: “No free man shall ever be de-barred the use of arms. The stongest reason for the people to retain their right to keep and bear arms is as a last resort to protect themselves against the tyranny in government”

Posted by Tim McClure | Report as abusive

Maybe it’s redundant to say it but I think the reason why there was an increase in the volume of purchased weapons is because one side (white) is thinking the other side (black) will take over or start riots like the ones in L.A. in 1989. In a way, they might be right: Imagine when a country that goes broke can’t afford to keep providing social assistance because it has to use funds ( those which are left) to maintain highly sensitive facilities like nuclear powerplants and nuclear arms facilities, maintain a basic infrastructure for the army, protect food and water supplies (for the army), etc. The part of the population (white and black) dependent on assistance will be the first to raise hell. What will happen then to the rest of citizens left to themselves? Will the government be able to hire more Blackwater security forces to assist the Police and National Guard? Perhaps in places, but not most.

Let’s be realistic: if there is but an unfounded gossip that gas will run out in a town somewhere, the public will stupidly go and get as much gas as possible, even though the country hasn’t had to deal with genuine gas shortages or the inability to pay for gas, unlike many other countries.
If the rumor started that pigs feet would run out because of a crisis in supply, the public, who doesn’t buy pigs feet all that much, would run to the store crazed and clear the shelves of pigs feet the very same day of the anouncement in the news. I said pigs feet, I can say rice. Didn’t the demand for rice suddenly increase when news of a worldwide production shortage hit the news sometime last year or so? The fear of a shortage of any kind in this wealthy country that never runs out of anything is enough to start a riot.

Ok, we’re going a little off-the-wall here but it’s safe to say that never before has the security of the United States of America been so deeply compromised by the failure to control corruption at the top level. If it’s true some little corruption can’t be avoided, it’s also true that allowing it to fester brings down whole nations.
A successful foreign military attack is highly unlikely against the United States; the way to hit it is to let corruption do its work with the banking system that feeds, clothes and shelters its citizens by providing them unbridled credit and by letting corporate greed cut down on their ability to earn an independent living by outsourcing jobs while maintaining the same wages for three decades… and let social tensions do the rest to eat it up from within.
I apologize profusely for the pessimism this morning. There is hope, of course: life goes on as usual.

Posted by Van | Report as abusive

Leishtek, I think you miss the point. It’s not a racist issue that people are going out to buy guns. Where in the woods do you live. They are buying guns to ensure their safety in the event they need to do so, as Obama is planning on curtailing their rights to own guns. How can you call a populace that voted him in, racist? The stage may have been set for Obama to come in and fail, but rest assured, he will fail. His economic policies are going to destroy the way the west has lived for the past 75 years, and people just want to protect themselves when their neighbors start trying to take what is not theirs when the hard times really hit.

Posted by Ron | Report as abusive

Where is Robispierre? I’m sure some charismatic, but calm, upstanding nut ball having a, seemingly, benign exterior with a political following is dusting off the image as I write. We’ve likely seen, read, or heard him on the news at some point, he just hasn’t come fully out of the closet yet.

Posted by Dirk | Report as abusive

Ahhhhh…Kiki! Awesome! You is one bright human. I’m with you T O T A L Y! As a Vietnam infantry vet,and student of human history, I got it… Try out http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com/

Posted by Dirk | Report as abusive

Wow, some amazing stuff posted, and since it is www the world might wonder what has gone wrong here. But from my own view, a gun owner for 55 years, hunted and target shooter, whom could probably our shoot 95% of those posting, just some observations
A. Most of the paranoid posters are nearly 100% rational and echoes of the WACO bunch, AKA “they are coming to get us so we built a fort” etc.
B. The “I am legal as I have a permit so I can defend me and loved ones etc” are exactly the same things the gang banger “ranger” members say, that do not have the “benefit” of being “legal with the gun”
C,NOTHING is more frightening to cops then to respond to a scene advised “crook with gun, citizen with gun”
D. Nothing is more frightening then a “ciitizen with a gun, 19 rds it and two more 19 rd clips running about town and only had fired it on “target range AKA paper punching” and is inside the theoretical “stop the robbery scenario” so many bring up and I am in same place
E. VEery amusing to see where “can use our guns to stop the government etc”..yep can just see these big mouths when a tank pulls up at their house.. or a 50 cal squirts few through there front door.
F. Observation. I NEVER met a vet after WW2 or Korea and few from NAM that actually wanted a WW2 M1 rifle-carbine, A M14 rifle or M16 or AK, although a very few did, I never met one. Most of those drafter NEVER wanted to see a military type gun ever again.. But now with no draft and only lower end and lifer families attending military, most whom can afford the guns as I have seen, never wore uniform other then a fast foods shop. Seems those that never served want to play soldier with miltary type guns then those that did serve..
G. I am amused at the fools that post and seems hung up on crime and the use of “IF” as in “if they come in, kill, you rape etc. as to hype the “I am a hero and will not let that happen, so you are scum”..probably are as dangerous to family as are the “criminal” but love to operate ih the hypathetical…
SO for all that so love their guns and need 20 round handguns, 30 round or more for their “look at me with my bushmaster, AK or M16 etc playing Minuteman defending the town, swat cop or soldier”. I can only advise you wanna be hero’s. IF YOU SHOOT SOMEONE, or as you so often put it while playing the some sort of vigilante savior of USA “bust a cap on them”
YOU CAN AND WILL ALWAYS RECALL THE SHOOTING OF SOMEONE (even in military) BUT YOU CAN NEVER RECALL THE BULLET.

Posted by Chuck | Report as abusive

In response to Van,

I’m not one who typically responds to posts like this, because I’m pretty much a ‘peacekeeper’ and don’t care too much for debate. However, I just want you to know that while your comment about racism may be correct for some people wanting to purchase firearms (as it is probably correct for many people NOT purchasing firearms)that is not the case for everbody. Unfortunately racism does exist, and from all sides. Let me just say this up front. I am white. The current state of our country and our economy has created a desire to purchase a handgun for protection, and I aim to do so soon. However, I have never once considered the skin color of the person who could potentially be a ‘threat’ to me, and have NEVER even considered such race riots like in LA until your comment.

I have operated firearms since I was a young child, and have only owned a rifle until now. However I’ve seen the social unrest that can come economic crashes, and I do intend to be prepared.

You’ll notice that in the article it made a comment that a majority of the people living in tent city’s around the country are white, seems to me that they could potentially pose greater threat than anybody else, regardless of skin color. Let’s see, moving from a 4br/3ba house with all the modern amenities to living in a tent with no running water and no sewage/facilities. It would be enough to make me pretty desperate.

It makes me sad to see so many things come down to race. Racism does exist but many people DO see past the color of the skin and see threatening people as more than their ‘race’.

Posted by Sara | Report as abusive

Um, No. This is Not about the economy. “This” – being the rush to buy handguns. No, this is about the clear evidence that the Left is rabidly pursuing their agenda whenever and wherever possible. If you think that you might want a gun a sometime in the future, well buddy, that future is now. Your opportunity – notwithstanding the recent Supreme Court ruling – may not be here in a year. That – and only that – is the reason for the rush to buy guns.

Posted by Guy Thompto | Report as abusive

Wow, a lot of supposition in this article. Not much support. Nice title though.

Posted by Allen | Report as abusive

So many words have been written here about the wrong thing: guns. The base issue isn’t guns, it’s people. So yes, I’m obviously a believer in the old “guns don’t kill people, people kill people” cliche. Fortunately, there’s usually a good reason behind the existence of a cliche.

I’m an American living in Scotland for three years now, one of those “Euro-liberal Socialist States” we like to deride so much. Guess what they kill each other with here? Knives. Sure combat knives are not legal. You can’t even purchase a sharpened version of the traditional Scottish marriage knife (called a “sgian dubh” in gaelic) worn strictly for ceremonial purposes nowadays in a sheath on your sock along with your kilt during a wedding ceremony. They only sell dull versions. So the crooks buy butcher’s knives to stab with.

I’ve also lived in New Orleans (8 years), a city that beat D.C. in murders-per-capita for several years running. I was there during those years in fact, yet I feel more unsafe here in all-white Scotland. I’ve seen videos of British police “riot” vans with grating and steel shutters to protect the windows (unarmed coppers of course) being assaulted by bricks, bottles, fire bombs, and anything else a large group of deliquent teenage punks could get on-hand. Walking along streets here, I’ve been verbally assailed by the same type of punks out simply having a good laugh amongst themselves. I’m a 6’5″, 230lb. male and I’ve been fearful here. Could you imagine what a woman of small stature must feel?

Someone pointed out that it’s about fear, that gun owners are often fearful people who may need to somehow overcome it, as if it’s some type of psychological problem. I’ve met the type, having gone to college with a guy carrying an unregistered .45 everywhere he went, noting that his first reaction when someone knocked on his door was to place his hand on the grip. While it’s true that there are psychotic, paranoid people who happen to own guns (or probably knives over here), the more common owners of personal protection are simply responding to a fear justified by tens-of-thousands of years of human behavior: the robbing, raping, killing, maiming, pummeling, and otherwise violent treating of each other. Using rocks, sticks, swords, knives, and now guns. Could we ever expect apes, or porcupines, or fish killing each other off on the scale of a WWII? Nope. It’s strictly human in nature.

There are a few consequences of this gunless society. There appear to be many more robberies, thefts, and other property crimes here (probably increasing insurance rates overall for everyone). It’s also a much less polite society here (another cliche I feel that I’ve proven to myself to be true), having been treated in ways that Southerners (American that is) especially would immediately take offense to, if not downright prepare to throw a punch. But it’s simply the way it is for these people. Also, there are obviously many fewer fatal violent acts.

I suppose this last item could be the main logical selling point for those of “liberal persuasion” to argue against guns. But since most “shootings-in-anger,” or at least it was this way in New Orleans, involve members of the criminal class anyway and not your “general citizenry,” is there truly any benefit to preventing them? It happens here with knives, or bottles, or boots leaving people with lifelong injuries in many cases. Is it necessarily a good thing to lower the chance of death among the criminal class? Is it a good thing to increase the numbers of less-fatal injuries amoung lifelong delinquent addicts requiring ongoing State services?

My point is that guns are irrelevant. We’ve been killing each other for thousands of years. We’ve simply improved the numbers of each other we can take out at a time, or the effort to do it. Without guns, we’d still be doing it.

Posted by Jon | Report as abusive

KiKi,

it is hard to disagree with you on your point about reaction to danger. Combat veterans know. Some police know. Most civilians do not know. So you are absolutely correct. I am hobbyist gunsmith. I say that because I don’t earn any income from it. I reload my own ammunition and I understand firearms. I am proficient with many light arms. I am an experienced speed shooter and with my 45-70 I can take down any large game in North America within 500 yards with iron sights. But, I have never been in a situation where lives depended on my reaction with a firearm. I truly hope I never am. But, like the Boy Scout, I will be prepared.

As for the hunting for food, some of us live in areas that are not as populated as a big city. A Bull Elk or a few bucks would provide 6 to 8 months of meat to my family. I also think it is a moot point. Game could not support the entire US population and wild game alone is not a balanced diet. Without carbohydrates ketoses sets in and that can be lethal. I doubt the situation will stretch to that point. Even if we reach 25 to 30% unemployment there is still 70 to 75% still working and earning an income. The cattle ranches and farms and canneries still need to provide food to those working and earning so, I doubt there would be any long term disruption to the supply of food staples. This is why I would think that the black markets would grow especially drugs and prostitution and why some will turn to property crime so make sure they, the jobless, can feed their families.

I have written to the White House and my Congressmen regarding the need to ensure that the displaced are housed, fed and medical needs taken care of. In my opinion the Stimulus package didn’t do enough in this area.

Your point regarding the City/State is historically correct but, I doubt it will apply to the current global depression. Crime will rise and most will be in the cities. Sure the rural areas will see a rise but, I doubt it will be like what will happen in the city. I would hope that this situation will not cause cities to die. As you said the rural areas depend on the city.

I find your opinion regarding the moral character of our politicians flowing down by example to our citizenry to be very insightful. I believe there are many good people here but, it only takes a few bad ones to cause unimaginable trouble and since way to many are unwilling to stand up and protest (a rebellious friend of mine says the country is populated with sheeple) those few are rarely challenged.

As for all of you who came to my defense, thanks. Ian obviously has some issues that caused him to read more into my comment than was there. And for the record I am not a Dubya fan. I am not a Democrat fan either. But I might dare say that they seem to be a shade better than the last bunch of Republicans. At least so far. And I am counting on Obama’s promise not to place new restrictions on our firearms. For all that is worth.

Posted by B.Free | Report as abusive

You are all reading too much into this author’s tenous link. President Clinton was white,there was no economic depression going on, but gun/ammo sales went thru the roof during his first administration. The issue is simply fear of additional restrictions/prohibitions. Obama’s legislative history is strongly ani-gun.
Regarding hostility and fear of social unrest,conditions were a lot worse during the Great Depression, but there weren’t mass violent uprisings.
Here in the rural areas we have always looked after the less fortunate. We may live farther apart but we are highly networked thru fraternal organizations,churchs, Grange and 4H, volunteer fire companies, veterans’ clubs, gun clubs ,etc. When someone’s house burns down, or their kid needs an operation, we take up collections to help them out. We have a guy at work whose daughter was severely wounded in Iraq. The parents had to rush off to be with her, leaving behind a working farm. Within days a volunteer group had formed that fed and watered the animals, harvested the hay crop that was ready, baled it and stored it in the barn, and even kept the lawn mowed. We help each other, we are not going to turn on each other, even though we have lots of guns, probably 4 or 5 per household on average.
With the high percentage of hunters and veterans, any nonsense that starts in the urban areas has little chance of getting very far into the rural areas. We’re not losing sleep over this.

Posted by RuralOne | Report as abusive

This column is dead wrong and exploits the situation for a juicy story. It’s an embarrassment to journalism. Fact is that people bought guns in higher numbers as they thought that Obama was going to crack down on gun laws. That’s all there is to it. Why? They looked at his limited and non-definitive voting record and acted from a fear and paranoia that has defined the American character since we stole this land in the first place. American fear and paranoia … now that’s your story Bernd!

Posted by Brian Lucey | Report as abusive

Jon, your explanation is as right on as anything I’ve ever read. I own guns; have been around guns all my life. I have yet to see a gun kill a single person. Guns are inanimate, unreasoning tools. People use guns to kill people, as well as bricks, bats, knives, rocks, and their bare hands. To those well meaning but ultimately ignorant folk who espouse “gun control” I guess the ultimate step is to outlaw all material that may have the potential to harm or kill people. Good luck with that one!!

It’s also interesting to note that the cities with the most stringent gun control laws are the ones with the highest crime rate. Most notably, Washington DC, Detroit, Oakland, Los Angeles, and Chicago. This is not my opinion but facts reported by the FBI. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people. If you want a city to be truly safe, insure anyone who is responsible, law abiding and willing to take training is REQUIRED to carry a firearm. Trust me on this…crime will drop very, very quickly.

Posted by Gman | Report as abusive

In reply to Sara,
Thank you for your kind consideration. I share your point of view but I’m also realistic. The cities are still very divided according to social status and race.
I share the fact that any kind of criminal scares me, of course, and I try to stay out of the areas where it’s most likely for me to get shot, stabbed, robbed or raped (happens to women and men).

I must correct myself, though, because I wrongfully gave the impression that black populations are highly dependent on social benefits and welfare and that I implied they would be the first ones to revolt and riot. I sincerely apologize, it’s unbelievably silly to have said it and hope the reasons why L.A. 1989 happened do not exist anymore anywhere. But the fear factor remains and that is what drives the sale of weapons in America.

I’m realistic that hunting weapons won’t provide effective resistance should there be a compelling need to overthrow the government, and while there is still bread and circus in abundance, there won’t be any desire for political uprising anyway.

Posted by Van | Report as abusive

Think this is a reflection of the populace’s fear of the Govt.

Think the government may wish to ponder their actions in the context of history and fear the people. Mainstreet is not as dumb as the government thinks. The beltway no longer listens to the masses but goes about destroying the foundation of our founding fathers. Atlas shrug comes to mind

Posted by Don Green | Report as abusive

A little known quote that I once read was given to the Emperor of Japan who queried as to why there would be no attempt to invade the West Coast of America, and so instead, they invaded Pearl Harbor.

The answer: (might be a bit off as I’m quoting from memory) “We cannot invade the American mainland, for behind every blade of grass there will be a rifle.”

Had restrictions been popular then, perhaps we would be speaking Japanese. It’s a real quote and worth some thought.

Posted by Steve | Report as abusive

Gun sales have increased for 2 major reasons:

1. Gun owners and prospective gun owners believe that the liberal politicians will attempt to write legislation to ban the sale of hanguns or guns altogether. Hence the “buy some quick while they’re still legal” rush.

2. More conservative and law abiding Americans understand that they are ultimately responsible for themselves. A liberal government which is afraid of its own citizens and incapable of responsibly dealing with serious issues is just a few steps away from civil unrest.

The government and the police are just extensions of and reflect the moral code of the country. Citizens form (are) the government and protect each other, and no government or police force is large enough to control a population without the assistance of the citizenry. Katrina, LA riots, and a thousand other examples prove that law and order WILL sometimes break down. When it does, you can be a responsible citizen capable of defending yourself and those you care about…or you can be a lawless criminal…or you can be a helpless victim waiting for some other citizen to risk his life for you.

The lawless aren’t going to leave you alone just because you are unarmed. Grow up and join those law-abiding responsible citizens who actually defend the weak and enforce the law, -especially- when the simply government cannot.

Posted by Peter | Report as abusive

Mr. Debusmann,

See you at the coup de estat.

Posted by Bryan | Report as abusive

[...] In American crisis, anger and guns March 21, 2009, 1:35 am Filed under: Politics Reuters March 19th, 2009 [...]

Andre’ Cholmondeley wrote:

“What I find continually fascinating is— the people who will SCREAM at you about the 2nd Amendment — CONVENIENTLY skip the part of it that says ” A well regulated militia”!!

To me that is very clear — we need perhaps a Switzerland-style situation where the GOVERNMENT handles a logical, basic TRAINING course that also registers you as a “TRAINED USER”. What I just described it EXACTLY, PRECISELY what we do for driving cars — why not do the same for a TOOL THAT CAN KILL YOU?”______________________________

Unfortunately, folks like Andre’ don’t understand basic English language construction.

The second part of Article II of the Bill of Rights is a prefatory clause. The operative clause stands on its own. That being said, at the time of the writing of the Bill of Rights, the term “well regulated” meant “well equipped.” A “well regulated militia then should all be carrying modern, military style weapons, preferably of a common make and caliber.

At the time there was an “unorganized” militia as well as an “organized” militia. Clearly there was an effort by the authors to assure commonality of arms, equipment and training between both militias.

There is still an unorganized militia. Title 10 U.S.C. § 311, entitled “Militia: composition and classes” describes the unorganized militia.

As for registering cars vs. registering guns – there is no specific amendment to the Constitution that states that right to keep and drive automobiles cannot be infringed.

Nice try. How bout YOU read up a little, Andre’ hey?

Posted by Ned | Report as abusive

Maybe everyone here should take 20 minutes to read this bill. They are already trying to take your guns.

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext .xpd?bill=h111-45

Posted by mike | Report as abusive

For those of you who don’t get it… here is a short lesson on the constitution!
The three most important words in the constitution are Government, States, and People, because they describe where the power or rights go. When the founding fathers used the word government, it always meant the Federal Government in Washington D.C… Always! When they used the word States, they always referred to the state governments… Always! And when they used the word people, they always meant the individual citizens…. Always, no exceptions! And, by referring to a militia, they showed that they were not just talking about hunting squirrels. Why is that so hard for some people to understand?

Posted by Robin Brians | Report as abusive

Dear America,

Put Rambo back in your pants.

If you think you can outshoot the person coming after you, think again. Or, maybe, think for the first time.

Posted by Jeff Burke | Report as abusive

Its funny the hypocrits we have in our country. you have people screaming bloody murder if their rights to bears arms is restricted or becomes more difficult. these people who hold on to guns are the same people people who scream fromt he roof tops about being “pro-life”. there is only one purpose of a gun: to take a life. how can you be “pro-life” yet walk around with weapons that can take a life. these are also the same people who so easy to say “let’s go bomb them” or “we should just nuke them”. see the hyocrisy?? the worst part is, that these are the same “holier than thou” bible preaching people who believe it is everyone else who is immoral and has lost their way. jesus never carried a shot gun. Jesus was not some soldier. Jesus was a shepard and a carpenter. he built things not destory things. its funny how we here in america are so quick to scream about our rights to bear arms and create militias. yet, we hate those in other countries who wish to the same. at least those in africa and middle east are doing it to protect their lives and lives of their families. who is oppressing or persecuting us?? we hate the iraqis and the palestinains and iranians and the north koreans, because they want obtain weapons and arm themselves and start militas. yet you see people winning and screaming about that being their right. we tend to hide behind out flag and our bald eagle and show our “patriotism” becase we are trying to protect our land and families. yet if some kid in palestine or iraq was to do the same, he is labeled as some sort of “terrorist” or “jihadist”. see the hypocrisy?? bush was successful in spreading american principals and ideals in the middle east. and you see the result of that.

Posted by sidney | Report as abusive

[...] The AIG bailout’s counterparties were paid because of the ‘sanctity of contract,’ but one of the conditions of the car bailout was that those employees wages were cut. “The question arises: are contracts with blue-collar workers less binding than those with high… [...]

Listen here sidney…

1st… There are may purposes for guns, one of which is stopping someone from killing YOU. Being pro-life and pro second amendment makes perfect sense. It is about protecting life, and liberty. A baby has no way to protect itself from the abortionist. That’s why we are their advocates. A disarmed public has no way to protect itself from a tyrannical government run by mob rule democracy

2nd… Apply your same logic to killing/abortion to the limp-wristed left wingers. They want to ban guns because they are only good for killing, but yet its supposedly some woman’s right to let a doctor suck her baby’s brain out?

Posted by SkilletsUSMC | Report as abusive

Wow! Is there some way you can have a soundtrack play while your prognosis of fear is being read? Maybe the theme from “Jaws” would do the trick?

Or perhaps Bolero would be best, since it does seem that you are positively developing an orgasm of doomsaying?

And please post some photos of those “tent cities” you describe. I’ve seen campers all over the place out in America for years. So far, haven’t a single “tent” city like the ones you describe — or even a photo.

The tent cities that do exist are known as “public campsites” or “RV parks” — an unknown fact for those who rarely venture from the citadels of Myopia City for the Elite. Your reference to “tent cities” is just one more elite illusion, one of the scores of wacky-lefty talking points. It ranks right up there with that elite fantasy endorsed by Big O about all of those unwashed, uncouth masses out yonder in the hinterlands who cling to bibles and guns while squint-eying any furiners who brave a trek into their wilderness in search of votes

T-Party all night long, and it’s goin’ ta be a long’un.

And then vote in 2010 to kick the idiots out of office who keep doing the wrong thing over and over and . . .

Posted by T-Party 4 US | Report as abusive

All these bail outs and the American people get $25.00 a week in their checks and No agency can tell me if we pay tax on it.If you gave the American people the big bail out just maybe the economy would be better.

My husband was in a union 686 and they had a contract and the union did not protect the members in the plant close. A new company came in and bought them out and their contract was nullifide.They got nothing no sevenence.So much for unions and contracts they only work for the government.

Lot’s of interesting comments but it’s not really what’s going on….As people lose trust, in their government..the gun sales go up..When the government won’t stop criminal illegal aliens..from coming into the country …gun ownership goes up..anyone in the NRA knows, from reading the American Riflemen, that guns stop robbers and murderers, from entering the house..to kill granny..no brag just fact..Look at Katrina..in New Orleans..people with guns, went around and took what they wanted or were shot by the police for trying..The “bad guys” are not buying houses..stock or gold..they are buying guns & ammo, for the next big crisis coming..as investments..that’s why some folks are doing the same..in buying guns now..a hedge on the coming trouble.. Zeke

The collapse is coming. It cannot be avoided.

Have a good day!

Posted by abankerlovesu | Report as abusive

Maybe many guns are bought by people who think they need them to defend themselves against the crooks in the Black House?.

Posted by BHO | Report as abusive

Do you remember Obama telling the world he is going to create a “Civilian National Defense Force?” The CNDF will be equal in strength to the American Armed Forces. That means they will be ARMED.

Blair Holt’s Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act of 2009 allows for only those who are part of an “agency” to carry arms. That’s the CNDF, not you.

Obama will be able to call the CNDF the “well-regulated militia” that you aren’t. They may all be thugs of various stripe, but they will fill the bill. (Communist Cuba calls them “the Territorial Militia Troops.”)

When the CNDF comes looking for your guns, remember to tell them, “I was looking for those guns just two days ago and was shocked that they weren’t there. Do you happen to have any of those reporting forms?” Remember to trade them with a neighbor.

You’re better off with double-barrelled shotguns and bolt action rifles. They might let you keep those. Semi-automatic weapons of any kind will be out.

Posted by Timuchin | Report as abusive

More guns in a country already saturated with hand guns. For what? Shoot out your anger, or video game fantasy?

At the end of the day, it is the people who allowed all this to happen. They voted Bush in twice, celebrated when Iraq was invaded, didn’t act to reverse China trade deficit, kept on shopping massive imports and SUVs regardless of heavy personal debts, refused to deal with energy for decades, force the politicians to sink into unfathomable debt, and milked housing for $4T of free fake cash to fund the easy good life.

No matter who was in charge in DC, no matter how crooked were the Wall Street guys, nobody put a gun in the heads of the people to force them bust up the economy, and their children futures, for almost 2 decades of wonderful but unearned good life.

Nobody force them my friends. So who are they going to shoot? Themselves?

I suggest the American people take a deep breadth and return to the innovative intelligent life what made America such a great country up until a decade ago. Please. Get your act together for America sake, for much of the world needs an intelligent, prudent, rational, cooperative America.

Posted by TomK | Report as abusive

I disagree with the assertion that a rise in gun sales can only reflect a darkening mood among gun owners. Keep your ill informed suspicions in check; they do little to bolster your aura of authority. As to reason many may have rushed to buy guns in the first quarter, I would point to the change in administrations as the most important factor.

Most gun owners I have talked to seem to believe, either rightly or wrongly, that such an aggressive Democratic administration as we now have will likely attempt passage of legislation that severely restricts one’s right to purchase firearms. The conversation then is more of a, “Get them while you can” than a, “The world is doomed and I’m going to shoot the first sucker that comes after my stuff.”

Yes, I own firearms. No, I’m not a whack job ready to shoot up my neighborhood or the nearest shopping mall. You fail as a journalist by reason of your unbridled personal prejudice. Someone has to call your game into question; it might as well be me.

Mike.
Gun owner, normal guy.

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive

Hey Mike,

Did you stop after the headline, or did you actually read the article? The author made the same point as you: “get them while you can.” You fail as a reader, as someone should point it out. Might at well be me.’

-George

PS: At least you seem level-headed, which is more than anyone can say for quite a few of the other people responding. It’s hard not to notice the link between racist psychotics who use phrases like “The Black House” and “suck a baby’s brain out” (I didn’t realize a clump of cells even HAD a brain to suck out) and people with a major hard-on for weapons.

Posted by George | Report as abusive

In response to Sidney:

Your thinking is so twisted I don’t see much hope in untangling the knots in your logic….

You did a great job of stereo-typing and profiling gun owners. If gun owners are generally pro-life on the abortion issue you call them hypocrites because they own guns? because the purpose of those guns are to take life.

On the Pro Life issue: We are Pro Life because we respect the right of the unborn to in fact be born without having their brains sucked out while still in the womb. We believe that life is sacred and should be protected especially in the case of the most innocent and defenseless among us.

The idea that you put forth that because guns can ultimately be used to take a life makes our position on the right to keep and bear arms contradictory and hypocritical is more of a premeditated conclusion than sound reasoning.

It is not wrong to take a life in defense of your own or those of your family when under attack by individuals intent on plunder and violence. If you think there is something wrong with using deadly force to stop violence against yourself or your family…..then you are a pathetic excuse of a man!

You act as if gun owners get off on randomly killing people. Gun owners are among the most upstanding and law abiding citizens in the Country. No body wants to be in a position to have to use deadly force…..but when it is required to protect yourself and your family….the last thing we need is to have our gun rights legislated away so that the criminals are the only one’s with the guns.

What a stupid argument you put forward!

I don’t see any hypocrisy here, but I do see typical and pathetic liberal thinking. You mention Jesus? He came to offer Himself as an acceptable sacrifice to THE FATHER on our behalf>>>>>a day is coming when HE will return to judge the living and the dead! You will see another side of JESUS…the side that renders justice and deals with the sin and rebellion of people against HIM! There will be more destruction in that day than any of us have ever seen or care to see! So don’t paint a one sided view of Jesus as some kind of 1960′s era peace loving hippie.

THe Bible says there is a time for everything under the sun…a time for peace and a time for war!

getting back on topic…our Founding Fathers gave us the 2nd amendment for good reason. They came from tyranny and understood how easy it is for Governments to abuse their power and oppress people. The 2nd amendment was given to the people as a means of insuring that they could maintain the ability to resist tyranny should the Government get out of control.

George Washington said: “Firearms stand next in importance to the constitution itself and are the liberty teeth guaranteeing our independence!!

Wake up……..ignorance should be painful!!

Posted by mike | Report as abusive

There is famous poem in English which somehow could be link to the present scenario in American:

Wintery, mintery, cutrey corn,
Apple seed and apple thorn,
Wire, briar libmer lock,
Three gheese in a flock,
One flew east, and one flew west,
And one flew over the cuckoo’s nest.

There are three masters who created the present crisis in America. Bush, Chiney & Rumsfield(three gheese).They did and scattered in east,west…and destroyed cuckoo’s nest (American poeple’s).

Posted by Al Baloushi | Report as abusive

excellent story but very sobering indeed. I wonder how many illegal guns have been smuggled to Washington, DC.

As far as CEO compensation… it would be worthwhile for CEOs, company stock holders, and the general public to follow the Japanese example of compensation to their CEOs.

U.K. firm Manifest Information Services, which analyzes proxy information, estimates Toyota\’s top executive, Hiroshi Okuda, earned $903,000 in 2006.

At Honda, the top 21 earned $11.1 million, combined, in salary and bonuses, SEC filings show.

while at U.S. companies, the median 2006 compensation for CEOs at 50 of the largest U.S. companies was $17.8 million, according to a USA TODAY analysis of data from Salary.com\’s CompAnalyst Executive database. Packages included salary, bonus, perks and stock and options awards.

The auto workers union didn’t have to renegotiate, they just decided their jobs were worth it. Executives at AIG may well have decided that they’d rather look for other jobs or in some cases that their contracts would pay them even if they left, provided AIG was solvent. We don’t know if these workers were responsible for failure or whether their contracts had any provisions about company success. But they weren’t unionized, so they aren’t really crooks. They were signed to contracts of free will without duress or threats of mass exodus in event of contract signing failure. These kinds of comparisons are really below reason. If the government didn’t want the bonuses paid, why’d the government bail out AIG? Could just as easily of taken over the AIG obligations(AIG Victims) and left AIG to fail…

Posted by Reason | Report as abusive

I am not afraid of those that purchased guns, as I am our government, which is now trying to control just how much some can earn, at certain jobs!

How much longer before they tell you how much you can earn?

Posted by Bobc | Report as abusive

If only Sean Taylor had pulled a .45 on the guy with the gun instead of pully a knife…but his state’s gun laws were such that he lost the right to have a gun because he had used it to defend his property (car)…so he ran at the armed felons trying to kill him with only a knife, but in his death at least he freaked them enough to run off and leave his GF and baby behind after shooting him…

Posted by Death By Disarmament | Report as abusive

Oh yeah. Also, the ever-wise Jesse Jackson made a mockery of Sean’s funeral by talking about how he died because there isn’t enough gun control.

Posted by Death By Disarmament | Report as abusive

O.K. Here is how it is going to play out. Some time soon, if the economy of the world does not improve, there will be a new and up-to-date civil war in this country. Death-dealing will be easy and mind-boggling in its efficacy. In the end, the side with all the firearms will win all the goodies. Freedom of speech, assembly and worship will all go out with the baby and the bath water.
Even now, the people who brought us to this point while betting on human nature to supply all the greed necessary to screw our nation, are organizing all they can in the Southern states under the banner of ‘Freedom of Religion’.
This next war will be a doozy. If any one of us lives to survive this man-made holocaust, none will care to review the past at all. Get ready for a day-to-day watch your own back existence. Forget about pick-pockets, these will just be so much comedy relief.
If one has the money and one can get out, it is time to start packing. My guess is that it will all be over by 2012. The Mayans and their calendar are probably right. Years ago, a science fiction writer published a short story called, “The Year of the Jackpot”; wherein everything that could go wrong or get screwed up …… DID.
My guess is that we are approaching the end of this civilization, and the screwiness we are observing is ONLY the tip of the iceberg. Just as the captain of the Titanic, our government and those of many other soverign nations in the world, are moving full-speed ahead into the darkness and an eventual one rounder with an economic iceberg.
I, for one, am not worried. About nineteen years ago, I suffered with the ‘flesh-eating’ disease. On one day, I coded blue three times. The kidneys shut down and I was left on a respirator for twenty-four hours. My recovery was legendary at that hospital. Every day I have been alive since that time has been a freebie for me.
We will not recover from this onslaught. Remember what Nikita Khruschev said, “We will bury you”. Little did he know that we would do it ourselves. So…….Go ahead and arm yourselves and blow each others brains out. I protected myself economically years ago so that my loss in this ‘booming’ economy was minimal. I for one am getting the H out of here, while there are still sane places to live in this world. You all can keep your stupid and petty arguments. Enjoy!

Posted by Tony Genco | Report as abusive

22 Mr 2009 Do any of reuters readers think that the
crisis will keep getting worse and the situation is totally out of control regardless of what the politicians
say because the past and present politicians seem to be
taking bribes (even just ten percent bribe will bring the politicians more than $200billion and that is NOT a small thing) indirectly in return for TARP etc funds
and whatever they are saying on the surface is just plain
innuendoes?? That US seem to be making fool of the world
and wants to live off the world by these inneundoes?

Posted by jjmk4546 | Report as abusive

Right now, people fear the government, distrust the government and fear the future. It’s not a case of get’em while you can. Nope! Not even with Clinton’s rhetoric were gun sales this high or fears running this strong.

We are afraid of Obama, his cult like following and his crooked goons. The government is going very communist in a very short amount of time. Most people are smart enough to know the main stream news is a propaganda machine for Obama. The elections coverage removed all doubt of that. People fear what Obama will do and you will be amazed at the distrust coming from the states towards the federal government. States are declaring the 10th. People are worried about a new civil war. The fear factor cannot be dismissed. As long as Eric Holder goes after guns that fear factor will continue to rise.

Posted by rachel | Report as abusive

More guns = more crime, more shootings and more fear any way you put it. This impulsive act by Americans based in fear will take its toll on an already strained country. How many school shootings does it take, how many people shot dead during crimes, how many children playing with guns that die or take the life of a friend without even understanding before we realize. Some love the phrase that “Guns don’t kill people, people kill people” but there is no doubt that guns are the means people use to kill people. The fear that others have guns cause people to wish to “protect” themselves by adding guns for their safety. And that leads us back to the first sentence. This is a very sad sign of our times.

Gentlemen:
I disagree with the notion that gun sales are exploding because of a “darkening mood” in the country. Both gun sales and the mood of the country are well known, but they are not causally related. Free (for the time being) Americans are buying guns in record numbers because they believe that the Obama Administration with its aggressive socialist agenda will attempt to deprive us of our Constitutional right to keep and bear arms. Gun owners are stereotyped in the leftist media as undereducated, bigoted, drunken rednecks. Nothing could be further from the truth. We are ordinary people from all walks of life. Some of us are responsible sportsmen, others are simply taking the responsibility to defend their person and property upon themselves, rather than trust an incompetent and corrupt government. We see crime, drugs, and the slaughter of innocent young people on college campuses. Government (dispite the beliefs of assorted slackers and Obamamaniacs) cannot protect you. Only you can protect yourself. We are not angry at our fellow citizens, however, we are suspicious of our government. As Thomas Jefferson so aptly stated, “A government big enough to give you everything you want is big enough to take away everything you have.” The mainstream media does not acknowledge it, but there are millions of Americans out there who believe in the principles upon which this country was founded. If the ACORN thugs, or anyone else with the false impression that they are entitled to wealth they did nothing to create, come knocking, we will defend ourselves.

Posted by J. Gregory Vermeychuk, PhD | Report as abusive

More guns do not equal more crime as one poster claimed. States with the least restrictive gun laws like Alaska, Montana, Vermont, and New Hampshire have violent crime rates that are much lower than the national average in part because of gun ownership. Gun laws do not stop violent criminals from obtaining firearms, but they do serve to strip honest citizens of their ability to defend life, liberty, and property.

People are buying guns for lots of different reasons but the thing to remember is they are registered by the federal gov. so they know who has them and how many, unregistered guns are the ones the gov. is most worried about, these guns were most likely passed down within the family or bought long before national registration was enacted. I live in a rural area and know many people who have never purchased a weapon over the counter but have 10-20 shotguns, rifles and handguns all given to them or inherited by family going back to the 1950′s 60′s and later. As for people thinking about living off the “land” most public land ( state and Federal) have strict controls on what can even be brought onto the land and how long they can stay. The rest of the land is private and people will use their guns to protect that along with personal property. Rural people are also related to each other either though blood or marriage and so that means the farmer down the road is an uncle, brother, father etc. Also rural law enforcement draws from the same pool of people along with judges, elected office holders etc. People in large metro areas are going to bear the brunt of any civil unrest because the first thing they will think of should something break out is to flee using a car or truck / motor home. But look at a map of any major city and you can see choke points leaving them sitting in traffic for who knows how long. Most people in this country could not grow a carrot let alone try to shoot, gut, skin and butcher a rabbit let alone a large game animal like a deer. If civil unrest comes and I hope it does not people living in metro areas are going to face the brunt of it.

Posted by Greg | Report as abusive

The right of guns is necessary. The government now is trying to say only the militia has that right. Those early Americans were the militia. They were farmers, shop owners, labors. The average American knew what was necessary to defend against tyranny. Obama supporting thugs like ACORN shows he is out of touch with America. His left leaning promises are just that left leaning and out of touch with the citizens. He would like to prevent gun ownership if he could. It will only be the will of the American people to remind the Officials of our Government that they work for us and not vice verse

Posted by NORM | Report as abusive

It is part of growing up. Fear drives the need but the loss of income through markets drives the outcome.

Posted by Charles | Report as abusive

Odd, the anti-spam word for today was “TOAST”.

Welcome to the land of dog eat dog. With the influence of our across pond cousins, and their inordinate infatuation with everything national socialist or communist, we are now looking at civil war.

Thanks folks, and remember this the next time you are invaded. I certainly will…

Posted by Randall | Report as abusive

The writer may be just a little envious that we Americans still have and will continue to demand the right to keep and bear arms. We have no intention of being disarmed by an out of control Marxist like Ayatollah Obama would like. GB, Australia, and too many others have cowed down to their leaders instead of reminding them who works for who. We insist on criminal control not honest citizen control. B. Hussein s numbers are being artificially inflated by the press that adore him. I drive a truck, lori to our friends across the pond, and all across America more people are regretting their vote for him than bragging about it.

Posted by russell | Report as abusive

People have to be put to work. We can no longer send jobs out of the country. We have to close the gap between rich, and poor. Yes the Goverment must provide a common defence , promote the general Welfare of it’s people. It must insure domestic Tranquility above all at any cost. Or there will be domestic violence. People must WORK!

“More guns = more crime”

FYI – the crime rate in England is higher than in the USA.

Posted by PA | Report as abusive

Tony,You must be the same guy that was waiting for the UFO’s to land and save you right?

Posted by TRome | Report as abusive

Our rights to own and bear arms has already been debated and are guaranteed through the Bill of Rights.

Laws that forbid the carrying of arms… disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes… Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man. Jefferson’s “Commonplace Book,” 1774_1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment, by criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1764

also,

A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicity. Thomas Jefferson

Posted by Ron | Report as abusive

And we should take away from this what? So big deal, republicans buy guns, so what. They have never carried them in battle so they just have them to look at. You show me a dedicated republican and I will show you a gun owner and that is all. Defend the Constitution, no thanks, they will say. Defend the Country, no thanks, that is for the poor. We will defend our wallets and then not to much on that end either. We all know that this is just a look at me game they play, just to rile up the poor folk in their midst. The first crack of gunfire and all you will smell is them and the little accident they had. If you are unarmed, they may stay and fight, but that is debatable…hee hee…

Posted by jasan | Report as abusive

It’s simple folks….

“Democracy is like two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for lunch…
Liberty is a well armed lamb contesting the vote”

Ben Franklin

“Democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.”

Thomas Jefferson

“When the people fear the government, there is tyranny,
When the government fears the people, there is Liberty!”

Thomas Jefferson

“I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents.”

James Madison

“With respect to the words, “general welfare,” I have always regarded them as qualified by the details of power connected with them. To take them in a literal and unlimited sense would be a metamorphosis of the Constitution…[that] was not contemplated by the creators.”

James Madison

“To preserve Liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people possess arms, and taught alike, especially when young how to use them”

Richard Henry Lee 1787

Posted by Edna Eagle, | Report as abusive

The ‘stimulus’ package helped shareholders and not the taxpayers; bailouts to banks ensured debts were paid for the gamble in the derivatives market that paid nice bonuses since 1999… AIG bailout helped Citi, BofA, Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank & Societe Generale, to name a few….

The government had a simple solution at hand….create a STATE OWNED bank, with a clean balance sheet and 3 TRILLION USD to keep credit markets going and the interset rates intact to support the currency, with the option of privatizing this bank in 1 yr time with stock options delivered in the mailbox for every tax payer, summing up to some 40% of the total market value of the bank. Another 40% would have been sold to private investors, with a 20% stake left for another 2 years in gov’s hands for board decisions.

The Obama administration was USED by the FED to provide the last remaining outstanding powers: risk and regulation. The US economy will be de facto owned by a bunch of private banks… clap, clap, clap….Bravo !

Posted by paul | Report as abusive

I for one am not at all concerned about a wave of civil unrest among the American Population while all of our troops are deployed abroad. It does not concern me that AIG has just been renamed AIU, instead of A-IoU just a week after underperformers received overcompensation and I have been waiting 5 years for my REGULAR COMPENSATION and the EEOC and DOJ can’t seem to get things together after 911 on Domestic ‘para-civil’ Issues. I think the buying of firearms is a normal American Choice and I do not think you will see a rise in violence from the new poverty class being created in volume. I do not think people will pick up their guns and start shooting and stealing because they have been robbed unprotected by whitecollar pirates in a regulations free internet anarchy of unrestrained individual interest with unlimited corporate/governmental power.

I think American’s are peaceful people who are interested in defending their property which is being threatened and the Surge in Gun Purchases is wholly normal. Four years ago after I was robbed, threatened and abused under government surveillance, I considered buying a weapon as many other American’s do now. Ultimately I realized a Firearm is not the Answer and that the pen is mightier than the sword.

That there are Ethical People remaining in Washington and Business and they have remained silient for too long and that the ‘la Marseillaise’ attitude of Americans is part of our Strong Individual Heritage, which is a statement that we shall not be moved from our RIGHTS TO OUR PROPERTY by improper regulation in the Internet Capable Economy.

That quite possibly this Nation requires some Restoration of Faith in our Constitution and will recognize the evidence of the Strong and Unmoveable will of the People to protect America (which is a construction of People called AMERICANS) from the increased threat level of internal turmoil.

I don’t think it will ever happen Bernd, I think the people of our country are Industrious Innovators and once the Government realizes that the Industrious Innovation must be allowed to grow and prosper within boundaries of Regulation that Order and Prosperity will be restored.

Though I think that will take 5 or 7 years and there will be ample suffering among all, (as my family has suffered for the last 5 years) while we await the DOJ and SEC to pull its head from its ass and start assessing ENORMOUS fines and sending Whitecollar Criminals to Jail.

When those ‘keepers of the law’ are not doing their job, people reach for their ‘piece’ to protect their person from further harm.

It’s their right.

That’s why its there.

Peaceful Resolution and TIMELY Compensation to Innovation is the CORRECT ANSWER.

I think everyone should take a deep breath and find their answer in Church, which is another great American Tradition and a better answer than a Gun.

Sincerely,

James Reginald Harris, Jr.

You all are a bunch of chicken littles. “Communism! Socialism! Civil War!”
Get a load of yourselves. This economic mess was created by unregulated greed. The American economy is like a pendulum, and right now we have swung to the apex. It will bounce back. The blame can be pointed in many directions. I’m not going to single out a certain political party, or class, or country for this mess. Democrats and Republicans alike are responsible for this mess. Wall Street and Main Street alike are responsible for this mess. Why Main Street? Because if you don’t know what a 5.1 ARM with a balloon interest rate is, then that is your own fault for not researching before you took a 350K loan on a house.
Don’t blame Obama. He’s not trying to take away your guns, you paranoid nancies. Quit listening to the propoganda (on both sides). Quit listening to the voices that try to polarize this nation (both FOX and MSNBC are guilty). Stop the madness that divides and understand that we need to come together and look out for one another.
The sky is not falling. But if you insist on it, then the self-fulfilling prophesy will come true.
Peace.

Posted by Ari S. | Report as abusive

The bailouts are criminal, congress is committing treason against the American people and I am all for an armed revolution. Congresspeople get campaign contributions from bankers and the bailouts (more heavily supported by the D’s than the R’s) are the quid-pro-quo.

Obama ain’t nothing new, he’s just more of the same. He’s nearly doubled the deficit in just over 2 months. Took that incompetent nincompoop Bush 8 years to do!

SOlution: no more bailouts, cap wages of actors/tv hosts/sportspeople/singers/businessmen/b ankers. Nobody needs more than say, a million a year.

Posted by Mark | Report as abusive

“Gun sales shot up almost immediately after Barack Obama won the U.S. presidential elections on November 4 and firearm enthusiasts rushed to stores, fearing he would tighten gun controls despite campaign pledges to the contrary.”

Like a pledge means anything to this man. Every single ‘pledge’ he has given has been broken. Public financing? Protecting Veterans? Deficit spending? Lobbyists in his cabinet? Economic focus with 17 of 18 Treasury senate appointed posts EMPTY? Add in the fact that he was virulently anti-gun in chicago and one just might think that he will not just tighten but eliminate the Second Amendment by exec-order.

IMHO, he won’t try anything nearly as far reaching as he would have precisely because of the huge sales that were recorded. At least that is why I bought a couple extra.

Posted by jukin | Report as abusive

This is an informative and expressive article with a nice ironic turn at the end. However, I don’t think violence is likely to break out in the U.S. any time soon. There are not enough public spaces to which many people bring their concerns. To put the matter another way, if it isn’t on TV, it didn’t happen.

I suggest there will be no readily available way for Americans to build up a head of steam by mutually reinforcing each other. Even if there are scattered riots, they will only be able to spread around in ghetto areas, where public space is more closely linked with people’s everyday lives. I doubt that ghetto riots would trigger generalized lawlessness.

The only way I can (so far) envision violence erupting in the average U.S. community would be from shortages of food and/or fuel, particularly, of course, gasoline.

One possible exception would be if the Hispanic community gets up in arms over something. Judging by last year’s (or was it 2007) Hispanic marches in opposition to persecution of immigrants, that particular group’s leadership is capable of bringing people into the streets very effectively. Nevertheless, I don’t think Hispanic leaders would want their community to squander any of their power by staging rallies (or violence) just for the sake of blowing off steam.

There is suffciency in the world for man’s need but not for man’s greed .

Posted by Jim | Report as abusive

Many interesting points have been made in the blogs, however…

1. Even if guns were completely illegal, they would come from overseas, and JUST criminals would have them. This would become a new market for organized crime to make even more money.

2. I don’t think that criminals buy guns legally.

3. We as Americans have lost alot of rights, why let additional rights – of any kind, be taken away?

4. When a moderate, such as myself, sees it this way…this means that it is becoming more obvious that many rights are being taken away.

5. In regards to CEO pay; I would love the opportunity to receive a donation from one of these CEO’s – prefferably a home paid in full…

Posted by Jeff | Report as abusive

namastey sir,

what would be the global economy position during 2009-10,and how do you foresee the effect on common man.

Posted by g srirama murty | Report as abusive

In regards to gun ownership, I am an NRA member and firmly believe in the individual’s right to own a firearm. I have many reasons for those beliefs chief among them is that they make this country what it is, the way it is ( I also believe in the electoral college). I love this country. That being said I live in New York City, and contrary to popular myth, there is absolutely no reason to actually own a gun here (handguns are illegal). Any gun would be far more likely to be stolen and misused here than to be used for any presupposed need I would theoretically make of it. If I really thought I needed a gun in this town – I’d move my family out ASAP. I cannot understand why a dark mood would make someone reach out to gun ownership other than to stroke some need for empowerment. I read a lot posts on the Marketwatch Gold commentaries and those guys are waiting in the wings for the demise of the US as we know it. So they are stocking up on all kinds of survivalist accoutrements such as gold, toilet paper, canned bacon and you guessed it guns & ammo. It is too bad for them that survivalist myths only work in Hollywood movies. In real life things are far less glamorous and much grittier in the world they prepare for than in the movies – there is no winners and it is no place for my children to live. Humans are hiearchical primates, so a decline in the standard of living isn’t cataclysmic if you see that others share the burden too. The reverse is true as well, even if we have our basic needs met, we are unhappy if we feel we are relegated to an inferior class. History has shown time and time again, that violence is not the solution for our wounded pride.

Posted by David | Report as abusive

American citizens think that the Obama administration, the senate and congress are thinking about ignoring some constitutional rights.. 1st and 2nd amendments..

So they (the Americans) do not want their ability to bear arms,protect themselves, protect themselves from the government, if it overbearing and antii-constitution, so they are stocking up on arms, and ammo, to make sure they will still have them available..

Whether or not it is real or emaginary the fear of the government is real to them.. Bruce

Posted by Bruce King | Report as abusive

Being danish,but having spend a lot of time in the US on a regular basis..it is a pity to see how little it has developed the last 50 years…time to grow up and take adult responsiblity. Everything is overconsumed, energy,food in the US..unable to balance a federal or personal budget..
no responable needed regulations in place in too many areas from banning guns(protecting innocent people) to a finacial market which now makes havoc to millions af people around the world…STOP living a cowboy movie..with no rules.. where just retaliation is glorified..be preventive responsible adults instead in a modern society, that can save both people and the enviroment/planet.

Posted by Evald Harpoth | Report as abusive

When frightened, people “cling”, to whatever gives them a sense of security. That might be guns, bibles or even despots, as did Germany turn to Hitler in desperate times. Fear and emasculation fuel firearm sales. Freud would have much to say about needing handguns with long barrels.

Like gold, guns will be gathering dust by 2011. By then, the recession will be history, and jobs will be plentiful again. But, only for those with training or skills valuable in the 21st Century. So, I say, “instead of guns, spend that spare cash now on more education and prepare for your next career”.

Posted by James Conroy | Report as abusive

I’m gonna talk about something not in this article and it’s me having my fears exposed that America is already turning back to the Republican party rather than not siding with either party.

This 2 party system is a mess, gun rights aren’t going anywhere, both of them could care less about whether or not you have a gun that’s obsolete to the military weapons they could use against you if crisis really came to this country.

For 8 years Republicans in gov’t were trash, and we’re already realizing that Democrats in gov’t are trash, give up on both of them for the good of your country and the good of your soul.

Posted by Michael Ham | Report as abusive

Well, I don’t even like guns and would not want to own one. I also think that certain types of guns are unnecessary.
That said, I do not think that guns should be made illegal. I don’t think that law-abiding citizens should be the only unarmed people!
I am with David, who lives in NYC and believes in guns but does not have one. My brother can legally carry a gun in his occupation, but prefers not to, seeing that it most likely only invites trouble.

Posted by Fran | Report as abusive

Very well written commentary. Numbers are great, especially the average full-time worker’s wage vs. CEO.

Posted by DCX2 | Report as abusive

The government has driven fear relentlessly upwards pitting citizens against businesses, when if one would open their eyes to see the truth, this government is in the process of a huge undaunting power grab. Our freedoms are top on the agenda. AIG did what it was guided to by this administration. Text had been written into the bill to keep the bonuses down, but when the two-bipartisan senators(sincerely hoping to rescue the public from this mess)walked out of the room, this administration went hastily to strip the language out so that the bank could barrell full speed ahead and do what this president hoped they would do. He knew it would be a perfect setting to stir up a little class hatred. It worked. The banks unwittingly did as they THOUGHT the contract specified, and the administration had instructed —months earlier–This is not a new issue. There are audio clips all over of different senators months prior to this saying that they did not want the bonuses to go out, but the administration was saying they had to go out. The president, Geithner, Dodd, Pelosi, Emanuel knew, as did the senators that this was a problem for months. But the administration has the audacity to pretend like this was something new and those “bad ole’ businessmen need to be punished for their greed”—America, taxpayers, media, you have been duped—again. Open your eyes and see that the fruit that is on the tree will identify what type of tree it is. There have been national guard sent to Alabama, and Iowa to do drills to start practicing searches and seisures in the civilian areas, they were cancelled when questioned–for a better time. Isnt’t it strange that one business after another is attacked by this administration? Even the entities that the government has set in place to protect our borders ICE has been attacked by Pelosi, who also believes we should start cutting back on the number of children we have. Most families I know have one or two children, then they adopt. Instead of limiting the number of children solid families have, maybe we should start some program that would help teach teens to respect themselves, and others. Whereby they would be less likely to behave badly. Long way to go here I know. Unless you want to take parenting away from strong adults who will build up thinking children, and place reproduction into the hands of children who will look to the government to take control of the next generation’s education, moral training, placement of trust in government alone, not on the individual, which very well looks like this administrations agenda. Take control of the individual, make them dependent on the government, take the business make it dependent on the government, and take the military destroy the their honor then use them against the citizens they were to protect in the first place. Spend so much money, print so much paper that there is no way, this president or the next(if there will be another)will ever get us out of this. China is buying our debt, royals are buying our debt, Russia says we will never be viable ever again. Another trillion was just printed, and we are suppose to have more “stimulus” and more “bailouts” to come says the president. This is no slope, it is a narrow road, with a sheer cliff down one side. This president instead of taking the narrow road, has dediced he wants to take this nation, now his, down the sheer cliff. It was a decision in the beginning, and it can be changed. It depends of if he wants to continue to breed hate, violence to prove his point of class warfare, race warfare to meet his goals, or will he have a change of heart to allow America be the great nation it can be. This is a nation of innovators, we think on our feet. But if he continues to say he didn’t know about Aig bonuses, never heard of them, just popped up with out his knowledge, they took advantage of HIM, we have to realize we will get no help from him. The only reason we will survive this as a free nation will be the industriousness of our businessmen and women, the tenacity of the individual citizen to not let our nation be destroyed. Our hope is in our God and each of our personal resiliance. There have been too many lies-there has been bipartisan agreement on this, the administration has hidden lies, and covered them up, and then changed the story. The media is not covering it, we have to go to the internet to get the truth. The audios of senators conversation about the AIG bonuses are very telling…bipartisanly the fought the keep them from going out, months before it actually happened. They wrote guidelines to limit them and the administration took the text out of the bill just after it was done. Senator Dodd spoke of this, it was taken out by the administration –so they dealt with it,, how could they have been surprised about it??? They knew about it for months, had argued with conservative democrats and republican, libertarians…when it come out all of a sudden the administration had no idea it was there? No.

Posted by Karen | Report as abusive

I keep waiting for one of these financial institution CFO’s, CEO’s, managers, whatever, to really cash in by pretending to actually care about all of us they’ve screwed. All they’d have to do is pull a big publicity stunt, donate 1/10th of their fortunes to charity, and rake in the free press. But they’re too greedy to even see that. I also love the latest amazing excuse that bonuses must be handed out to more of these clowns to prevent them from going somewhere else. Right. No bonus, don’t let the door hit you on the way out, go screw something else up somewhere else. There’s a no-brainer.

Posted by FreeAdvice | Report as abusive

Guns are wrong! Dead wrong! Only dangerous and basically greedy people own and shoot guns! For example, those U.S. citizens who today sell Guns to Mexican Drug Cartels in exchange for both money and drugs. Watch the following animated political cartoon from Mark Fiore for a better understanding of the horrific problem the U.S. is currently having with Guns, and I have one final suggestion. I suggest the new U.S. government shut down the Gun manufacturing plants now proliferating on the U.S. Mexican border.

http://www.markfiore.com/gringo guns

Say what you like you lawyered up locked in secluded living getalongs, for an awful lot of folks, a gun is the one piece of property without which they will never have another.

70,000,000 Americans own, shoot, and handle guns every day. And, even more live in a household with a gun owner. 99% are responsible and moral citizens who have the will and ability to protect their own lives, their families, and their freedom. Slandering these decent honorable men and women is wrong.

Posted by Rusty Wallace | Report as abusive

People are buying guns in fear of having their second Amendment right taken away. It’s not guns that are the problem it is the education of their use. Also the government is supposed to provide it’s people with protection and if some people feel safer with guns then so be it.
Tightening the access to guns only hurts law-abiding citizens. If a criminal wants a gun, even with the restrictions he can get it from the black market.

Posted by Willis Honeycutt | Report as abusive

Mr. Raglione,

Apparently you have never read a history book. You might start with what happened to Germany once Adolf Hitler banned private ownership of firearms. Unless, of course, you’re a fan of Hitler? Or perhaps Mussolini? Good luck with your astounding ignorance and one-sided viewpoints, when the balloon goes up, you’ll need it.

Regarding the other part of the article – Mr. Debusmann, what’s your point? That our economy and politicians are so bankrupt and our situation without hopr that we feel the need to protect ourselves by any means we see fit? Or, are you just using the current economic crisis to wave the anti-gun flag?

Posted by Andrew Schmidt | Report as abusive

As long as it takes the sheriffs department 35 minutes to get to my house at night when there are intruders on my property, I’ll want a gun. My husband was in the hospital and I came home alone to find someone in the barn (garage) The gun blast had them skittering away and I haven’t had them visit again!

People are all in different circumstances and different places and there will never be a one size fits all solution to ANY problem.

Posted by Anne | Report as abusive

How can there be tent-cities of homeless people in the US when there are so many foreclosed or unsold new-builds standing empty? That is a crime!

How can the banks morally perpetrate this, and the authorities allow it, with the attendant risks of violence and damage to peoples’ health from poor living conditions, which, in the least personal terms, will be a cost to the US economy?

Shelter, and hence Security of Body, are No 2 in Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs!

Posted by Disgusted | Report as abusive

Just FYI. Guns don’t kill people. People do. So you gun haters better buy before they run out. Just in case. Because the time to buy a gun is before you need it. NOt after the fact. However, my biggest concern is Government confiscation of our liberties. Not social unrest. My only consolation at the moment is that these clowns in Washington are as smart as a bag of hammers, including the President. For a Harvard Graduate, he sure is doing stupid things. And if I hear one more time that “This is hard” and “I inherited a mess” and “We need to invest for the long term”. The word investing coming from the mouth of a Democrat translates to “Spending other peoples money by the boat load”. We have spent more in the last 50 days than we have spent in the last 50 years and that doens’t include this HUMOGOUS budget that President Obama is trying to crame down our throats.

Posted by Markfm Georgia | Report as abusive

The purchase of guns is up early in 2009 because people are anticipating anti-gun legislation from liberal gov’t.

Posted by John Dowd | Report as abusive

The writer should do some more research before writing this article – writing:

“Gun sales shot up almost immediately after Barack Obama won the U.S. presidential elections on November 4 and firearm enthusiasts rushed to stores, fearing he would tighten gun controls despite campaign pledges to the contrary.”

undermines the writer’s credibility. Maybe he should listen to what the Att. Gen. proposed several weeks back -more GUN CONTROL!! Luckly, congress wants nothing to do with it. I hope democracts think back to 1994 when they even think about any more gun control.

Posted by WGB | Report as abusive

Is there no more middle ground in this country? Why must we polarize rather than take part in constructive arguments. Neither side posting here seem to have any facts. Just propaganda and hype. Live your life in fear. Keep your kids hidden. Be afraid be very afraid. Let the politicians keep you fighting each other. Lets remain distracted. Pure insanity… and embarrassing.

Posted by Matt T | Report as abusive

I blame the Dem’s and the Republicans. First the ugly mood of blame and finger pointing (at it’s current level) was set off by Al Gore and the Democrat’s desire to portray the presidency of Bush as illegitimate. We have always had finger pointing and politics, but the Dem’s and Pelosi took it to a new level.

The Republicans utterly failed to control spending and right or wrong, they are equated to the Executive Suite of most companies. The gap between rich and poor has widened and greed is out of all proportion (if it ever had any).

In short, we are in this mess because both sides have failed us. Liberal or Conservative, you all need to take 2 steps back from your respective manifestos and really ask yourself if your actions are : moral, legal, and for the common good. That includes both Bill’s (O’reily and Maher), Pelosi/Gingrich, McConnel/Reid – everyone.

I dare to dream.

Posted by KB | Report as abusive

“Tent cities for the homeless have expanded outside a string of American cities, from Sacramento and Phoenix to Atlanta and Seattle, for people who are living the American dream in reverse. First they lose their jobs, then their health insurance, then their homes, then their hopes. The encampments are reminiscent of Third World refugee camps.”

ANOTHER INTELLECTUALLY DISHONEST REPORTER STRIKES AGAIN. These places have 100-150 people in them TOTAL. Who in their right mind calls that a CITY?! Only someone trying to make a mountain out of a molehill; only someone pushing an agenda. Third World refugee camps?! PLEASE GET A CLUE!

Posted by David Andersen | Report as abusive

Buy more ammo.

Posted by Cogs | Report as abusive

Don’t stupid, unemployed, broke people vote Democrat anyway? Surely a “tent city” (some hyperbole, that) is a ripe recruiting ground to swell the ranks of the left-wing, American voter. Yes, the Leftist likes to consider himself the intellectual, the hipster, the anti-yokel. But he never admits to the oligarchy in his ideology: a few effete, college indoctrinated children of privilege supported by millions of utter dolts. Consider the number of rural idiot-yokels the left-wing champion mocks while ignoring completely the millions of urban yokels that make up his party. It would be interesting to do a survey investigating the correlation between party voter registration and home foreclosures. We all know how that’d end up.

Posted by JDW | Report as abusive

Would those who feel the desperate need to exercise their Second Amendment right to bear arms, at least acknowledge that until they agree to some reasonable restrictions guaranteeing that their arms do not fall into the wrong hands, there is blood on their hands from the slaughter of the four law enforcement officers in Oakland this week?

Posted by TWC | Report as abusive

If guns made people safe, then Afghanistan and Iraq would be the safest places in the world.
The gun buying trend is just a curious statistical blip caused by a gun-toting American public expressing its childish Rambo fantasies in the face of overly trumped up fears about a new government.
The real problems are many, our endless thirst for drugs, our neverending personal greed, our inability to vote in people who serve our interests, and our lack of vigilance in protecting whats right.
We are letting rich people run this country into the ground, and yet we are too busy waiting to jump back into the stock market because we aren’t satisfied with the 2 percent return on our savings in bank CD’s.
Our priorities are out of whack.

Posted by Rick Cain | Report as abusive

This is a harbinger of the upturn coming soon. Firearms are an important part of the American industrial and manufacturing base. Buy American.

BTW, sales of new homes and durable goods are up, too.

Posted by MarkInAustin | Report as abusive

Yes, the increase in gun sales should have been expected among the far right talk-radio crowd. They are truly scary people, living in a fantasy world that George Bush propped up for them. I do hope and believe that most victims of the current mess (those who have lost their homes and jobs) will realize that Bush and his cronies are entirely responsible.

Posted by charles griner | Report as abusive

Who is John Galt?

Posted by JG | Report as abusive

Perhaps we should all learn to be more community oriented and help one another out instead of living in our little isolated bubbles of fear.

Posted by russell | Report as abusive

the continued acrimony between the so called right and left in our country is disturbing and destructive.

let’s stop attacking each other. the current economy is enough of a challenge without resorting to a senseless blame game.

ignacio

Posted by ignacio | Report as abusive

The congressional oversight committee has said that the 10 trillion that Obama’s budget will create is unsustainable. Unsustainable! Learn to hunt, gather and barter.

Obama’s Treasury Secretary (who wants to add to his power) was apart of making the retention bonuses a reality.

We are going to be the USSR, start the queue

It will be at this point that I believe Atlas will Shrug…

Posted by Jefferson | Report as abusive

What a fanciful column, with its foreboding gloom of “tent cities”. The author’s socialist bent is tipped off by his lament about the auto workers being required to renegotiate their contracts. Why should they have to do this? Because they can’t hope to keep selling cars if they don’t, Einstein.

Posted by JPB | Report as abusive

People always wonder why Americans are so obsessed with guns, but it’s very simple: We want to be in control of our govt and country. The govt is there to serve the needs of the people, but power corrupts. And so if the people have no weapons, and the govt has an army, then I hate to tell you but the people are now serving the govt instead of the other way around. I don’t think it’s a “dark or dangerous mindset”… it’s just pragmatic.

Posted by OpenMinded | Report as abusive

Whatever happened to compassion? Whatever happened to helping our neighbor?
Whatever happened to working together to find new ways out of our problems besides shooting people? It is this philosophy that keeps us at war in the world. Has anyone stopped to think what could be done with the same amount of money & man/woman power that a war uses for peaceful and humanitarian endeavors? Yes, to quote John Lennon “call me a dreamer….but I’m not the only one!” May we who believe in the power of peace and love compassion find our own ways to heal our country of its wrongs and help make the world a better place. We can show the world a better way to handle our problems, many self-created! Greed has caused us so much misery! May these hard times awaken us to the best that we can be!

Posted by Carol Daugherty | Report as abusive

You can’t cheat an honest man. People who took out mortgages when they could not afford the repayments, who kept refinancing, to live the good life; let them try tent city for a while. As to the absence of street violence: that may be a direct result of having all those guns in peoples homes and businesses. If I saw a group of hooligans burning cars in the street near my house as in France, Greece, or Spain, I would litter the street with dead bodies and feel no remorse whatsoever.

This author is a complete economic illiterate. The only thing Obama will do is spread the MISERY equally. This is utterly un- American and downright scary. Where are all the phony civil libertarians on the Left, now that the government wants to steal money that they have no right to? The fruits of one’s labor belong to him/her and nobody has a claim to it. There is no “middle class” as the word “class” means something that can not change (think the SUV “class”). You can be wealthy today and tomorrow lose it all and vise versa. Get off your Butt and go work. You live in the Greatest Country in the world with the most opportunity precisely, because you CAN become rich and prosperous and that there is a secure social compact were contracts that are mutually agreed upon are honored and sacred. You do not have a right to other people’s money. G-d Bless America and the Second Amendment.

Posted by Joe | Report as abusive

No use talking and whining about it. Real America will not be dominated by, and required to support, left wing communists. Aint … gonna … Happen. As the late Paul Harvey said “America traditionally uses three boxes to control left wing government control. First the Ballot Box, failing in that then the Jury Box, failing in that then the Cartridge Box.” You think the US Military will protect the homosexual, the abortionists, or the so called environmentalist-communists? HA! Better think again. Who do you think IS the milatary?

Posted by JR | Report as abusive

If by Bush and his “cronies” you mean Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Maxine Waters, Barney Frank, Etc. then you would be correct. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac along with other mortgage companies that let their greed runaway with them, were the Major cause of the housing melt down which is credited with starting the financial slide. These people demanded that anyone who wanted a house be loaned money by Mortgage companies, regardless of whether they cold pay for them or not. And yes, I also blame Bush as well because he championed this line also. Some Republicans and a few Democrates warned that this type of leanding would be disatserous but nobody wanted to listen. You should also know that Democrates have controled the purse strings of government since 2006. What did they do to prevent this… NOTHING!!! This Crash occured on their watch…

Posted by Glen | Report as abusive

I am an honarably discharged soldier, and have grappled with this for years. What I keep coming back to is:

Why did the framers of the constituion think that the second ammendment was so important as to put it at the top of the list just after the freedom of speech?

The second ammendment is not about hunting, it’s about defense.

Amendment I
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
Amendment II
A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
Amendment III
No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
Amendment IV
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Amendment V
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
Amendment VI
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
Amendment VII
In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
Amendment VIII
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
Amendment IX
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
Amendment X
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

Posted by kevin | Report as abusive

Here is the way it is. When martial law is initiated in late August-early September because there is no saving grace from this planned financial disaster, we will see if it is a replay of New Orleans.

Posted by Joe | Report as abusive

Remember:
When seconds count, the police are minutes away!

Posted by Michael | Report as abusive

You can blame so many people for what happened. The unscrupulous bankers. The greedy borrowers. The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999. The Community Reinvestment Act of 1979. Bill Clinton forcing Fannie and Freddie to accept more sub-prime mortgages. DOESN’T MATTER.

What matters is that this current Administration starts thinking of ways to provide an incentive for people to start reinvesting. To start spending money. To start hiring workers. That doesn’t happen until you realize the extent of the housing bubble and the fact that prices haven’t stabilized yet and what that’s done to our credit market. Median Incomes and Median Housing Prices have historical ratios that still haven’t reached equilibrium since 2000 when they went out of whack. Either the Principal falls or the interest rates tumble before people buy again. You can throw trillions of dollars at the problem like Obama has done and it won’t do anything. Unfortunately at this point, throw more money into the market, which is still seized, you’ll cause a tidal wave of credit to eventually hit the market at once which means unaffordable inflation for the lower and middle classes.

People that don’t buy into the Good Speak of this President and his Staff are the ones buying guns. People that know something is amiss are buying guns. People that fear Obama’s Attorney General Eric Holder pronouncing he’s going to reinstate the Assault Weapon Ban, permanently, are the ones buying guns. People that have researched what little record this President has know he voted to ban semi-automatic weapons. These are the people buying guns.

The Supreme Court is currently hearing a case over McCain-Feingold, because of a Hillary Clinton attack movie, and one has to ask themselves, how is it in this country when James Madison warned us against creating a Bill of Rights precisely because Government would then have grounds to define what “is” is, when they have NO RIGHT to regulate our Creator-Endowed-Rights, that we’re having a debate about a political movie and the legality of showing it?! There IS a Government movement to curtail our Liberties, and some people are VERY aware of the fact. Wake up people and liberate yourself from the coming tyranny.

Posted by John R. | Report as abusive

“Would those who feel the desperate need to exercise their Second Amendment right to bear arms, at least acknowledge that until they agree to some reasonable restrictions guaranteeing that their arms do not fall into the wrong hands, there is blood on their hands from the slaughter of the four law enforcement officers in Oakland this week?”

This is as Pollyanish as it gets. There are no guarantees. You can’t have a ‘perfect’ world, free of mistakes, error, and harm. There are NO RESTRICTIONS POSSIBLE that can guarantee what you are asking, not even a repeal of the 2nd Amendment. Criminals will find ways to get guns.

Posted by David Andersen | Report as abusive

Hey TWC
The people with blood on their hands is the parole board that let a dangerous criminal out of prison, not law-abiding gun owners or firearms manufacturers. A typical liberal never blames the person; only an inanimate object which by itself can’t do harm. That parole board should have to answer for their actions. My thoughts and prayers go out to the Oakland policemen that lost their lives because of bleeding heart liberals like yourself.

“When they took the fourth amendment, I was silent because I don’t deal drugs. When they took the sixth amendment, I kept quiet because I know I’m innocent. When they took the second amendment, I said nothing because I don’t own a gun. Now they’ve come for the first amendment, and I can’t say anything at all.”
(Tim Freeman)

Posted by marsneedsh2o | Report as abusive

One of the problems we are dealing with here is (in case you haven’t notice) the President hasn’t always delivered on his promises. And he has a track record of being anti- 2nd Amendment from his days as a law professor.

I’m also buying a gun, just in case.

Posted by bill h | Report as abusive

No David Anderson, I will never agree that I have blood on my hands for gun violence. California has the strictest gun laws in the country and yet a man who isn’t allowed to buy a gun shot 4 cops with an illegal gun in Oakland. I believe you are actually citing proof that gun control doesn’t work. I would say that every time someone dies because they can’t legally defend themselves that blood is on your hands.

Posted by David Brewer | Report as abusive

“If guns made people safe, then Afghanistan and Iraq would be the safest places in the world.”

Rick, are you really incapable of thinking any deeper than that? I hope not. No one with any sense will make this claim, it’s a strawman argument. Guns will make people *safer* and – more importantly – *more free* in the face of criminals, thugs, and tyranny. History is littered with examples of this if you take a little time to investigate.

Posted by David Andersen | Report as abusive

“Would those who feel the desperate need to exercise their Second Amendment right to bear arms, at least acknowledge that until they agree to some reasonable restrictions guaranteeing that their arms do not fall into the wrong hands, there is blood on their hands from the slaughter of the four law enforcement officers in Oakland this week?”

And how would you define “reasonable?” This criminal was convicted of multiple felonies, having a violent and long rap-sheet, who had committed an assault and attempted rape the day prior, and who was already barred from buying, possessing, carrying or using firearms. Your “reasonable restrictions” only serve to make the law abiding into criminals but do not keep criminals from getting guns through theft, fraud or other nefarious means. I can’t imagine, as he was engaged in his life of crime, where he would say to himself, “oh, I’d better not carry a gun. That’s is against the law in Oakland.” Preposterous.

There is no “blood on my hands” for my support of my right to own arms for defense of myself and family. There is only blood on the hands of that scumbag, his family and his criminal associates.

Posted by GuilfordCourthouse1781 | Report as abusive

RE: “Would those who feel the desperate need to exercise their Second Amendment right to bear arms, at least acknowledge that until they agree to some reasonable restrictions guaranteeing that their arms do not fall into the wrong hands, there is blood on their hands from the slaughter of the four law enforcement officers in Oakland this week?”

1) Only a godless Collectivist believes the innocent share in the blame for the crimes of the guilty.

2) You have no clue how many restrictions on firearms already exist.

Therefore, I MUST doubt that you’re a U.S. citizen.

Posted by Bobby | Report as abusive

OOOOHHH NNNNOOO gun companies are making money…..better tax and cap and slam them until all those people are out of work too. We cant have a company that makes products right here in America making money espescially GUNS.PLEASE… BUY MORE GUNS BUY MORE AMMO…the Second Amendment is sacred even to many Dems..Any man not afraid to have me own a gun is a man I trust…those who dont need not be trusted. Every Generation needs a new revolution…WE DO WE START?

Posted by Thomas Jeffesrson | Report as abusive

Most of the guns that are selling are personal defense weapons: pistols, carbines, and ‘black’ shotguns (repeating riot guns). I recently bought a Browning pistol, and had to call three stores before I found any 9mmP ammunition. There is no .380 ACP (what Europe calls 9 millimeter Short) to be found in the USA. .380s are very popular among the ladies. The privatized former armories in Eastern Europe are cranking them out, thank you.
Senator Obama said pro-gun-ownership things during the campaign, but President Obama’s Attorney General has recently said the opposite.
Among the ‘PLU’ (people like us) the assumption is that Pres. Obama’s programs won’t work, Democrats will lose in the 2010 mid-term, and there will be systemic violence for 2 or 3 years. I feel sorry for Obama’s supporters (except for public employee unions), but I will defend my family.

Posted by Sam | Report as abusive

Hey TWC
The people with blood on their hands is the parole board that let a dangerous criminal out of prison, not law-abiding gun owners or firearms manufacturers. That parole board should have to answer for their actions. My thoughts and prayers go out to the Oakland policemen that lost their lives because of the terribly wrong decision by a parole board. I suggest you look into this problem.

Folks:

I’m a democratic-leaning independent. I’ll admit to having a strong “help thy neighbor” streak and (though you’ll doubt me when I’m done) I’m generally an optimist.

I believe there are forces at play in our society which are much too large for any one person to control. In fact, our society is already seriously fraying around the edges. Unless something radical happens soon, I’m not sure there will be any stopping the path we’re on.

Having gotten married last year, I began to feel that, at any moment, I might be called upon to protect someone beyond myself. (I know, a dated view steeped in small-minded gender biases, but that’s how I was raised. Sorry.)

We live in a nice suburb, but immediately to the North is a realtively poor area. If things unravel, the pent-up anger, hunger, need, violence, and desperation will spill South.

Earlier this year, I applied for my gun permit. I haven’t purchased one yet.

Once I do, I sincerely hope never to have to use it. But believe me, if worse comes to worst and all manner of diplomacy won’t cut it, I’ll have no compunction defending my wife and our home.

Posted by Ken | Report as abusive

Sakes alive, nothing like a column about guns and anger to bring out the angry gun people in force.

Posted by Steph in VA | Report as abusive

Something the NRA knows very well is Chairman Mao’s statement, “political power comes out of the barrel of a gun.” I wonder if the NRA would be willing to acknowledge the pedigree of this tenet of their purpose?

Posted by borisjimbo | Report as abusive

Hey TWC
The people with blood on their hands are the people who are responsible for letting a violent and dangerous criminal out of prison, not law-abiding gun owners or firearms manufacturers. The recidivism rate for these people is high, they almost always commit more violent crimes. My thoughts and prayers go out to the Oakland policemen that lost their lives. They were let down by the very system they tried to protect. This is not a gun issue, this is a parole issue.

I am with ya Ken… I am a peace loving help your neighbor and build a community…I lived in a similar edged suburb in Atlanta… When New Years Eve brought out my neighbors to the south… at midnight… we were divin’ under the bed… sub machine guns… big bangs… we knew they had been drinking… but as it came to who’s got the biggest baddest gun that night… I packed my bags… with the pending economy and current climate in the city… I left and moved to the mountains… still gunless… but the bears up here are pretty friendly in comparison…

Posted by Connie | Report as abusive

Personally I’m investing in Ammo, Power, Primers, and Brass. It’s going up far faster then any other investment. Obama really is generating business growth isn’t he! Sarcasm Off/

Posted by TTTCOTTH | Report as abusive

I grew up in the 1950s. We were a proud but humble country back then. We were admired as a nation, we were optimistic, we knew our neighbors, and we helped our neighbors. Almost no one felt the need for a gun for protection.

50 years later we hate each other. The Republicans seized power by exploiting our differences. They sowed the seeds of hate and those seeds have matured into a permanent state of hatred.

I’m a U.S. citizen, my family has been in this country since 1738. I’m a veteran. I love my country, but because I am a liberal I have been called every ugly name possible (like unAmerican, traitor, communist) by the right wing hate freaks like Coulter, Limbaugh and O’Reilly. I’m sick of it and I now probably hate the right every bit as much as they’ve hated me for a decade or so. Isn’t this just great?

So, by all means, America, arm yourselves for the final fight. Buy those guns and have them ready for the day you snap, because that’s the kind of country we have become: too lazy (or stupid) and too cowardly to try to fix whats wrong. It’s easier to arm yourself because what could be more satisfying than blowing away a fellow American?

I feel sorry for any politician who tries to fix this mess because the Rush Limbaughs want failure and the Glenn Becks want revolution and the pliable idiots will all comply.

Yes, buy your guns, dozens and dozens of guns because violence is the answer to everything (well, that and tax cuts). As for me, I know the way to Canada. The day the average American has to arm himself to survive is the final day of what was once a smart, confident nation. Evidently that day is on the horizon and the NRA couldn’t be happier.

Posted by Disgusted | Report as abusive

Small, medium and large industries are hurting from over-regulation burdening their respective companies, apart from the financial sector which has lavishly been given de-regulation after de-regulation AND poor oversight. There is no mistake that the issue is of great urgency (the state of California is a prime example of what not to do) but certain key factions don’t want to open their eyes and see it. (Sarcasm ON)Perhaps if we all cut our carbon emmissions the world will magically have more jobs available and the wildlife will thanks us like it did Snow White in the Disney movie. (Sarcasm OFF)

Perhaps the return to a bucolic country, where the major wealth resides solely on organically grown produce and eco-tourism might appease some people, at last (no sarcasm).

Posted by In reply to | Report as abusive

Wow, there are a lot of people that have the completely wrong idea about why so many Americans were buying up guns right around the election. Do your homework folks, Mr. Clinton and his gun ban probably made the biggest impact. As soon as Obama took office everyone went out and purchased the guns that they wanted…probably because they will be banned pretty soon…that’s what democrats do. They like to run average citizens lives, and like to do it they’re way. “Disgusted” seemed to have a really warped idea on what the average American gun owner is like. Just to let you know Mr. or Mrs. Disgusted I am a gun owner and I have a carry permit(not that I’ve ever used it) but I’m not a raging lunatic hell-bent on starting a civil war. If you met me I’m willing to bet that you’d think I’m a pretty nice guy and I bet you’d want me to come over and play with all 27 cat’s you probably store in your tiny 1 bedroom apartment.
To all the anti-gun nuts ranting on every forum and blog on the internet I just want to say thanks! You provide people just like me with endless entertainment! Yes we have guns, we have ammo, we’re frightening aren’t we!!??
We also have husbands and wives and children and family and friends that we cherish more than anything in the world.
Civil unrest in the United States of America will never be started by honest, sincere people like me (that own guns…oohhh!) We’ll simply be the ones defending ourselves and our loved ones by crazed dementia patients such as your self Mr. Disgusted!
I’m not asking you or people like you to go out and buy a gun I’m just simply asking you and people like you to respect the fact that I HAVE THE RIGHT TO, just like YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO FREE SPEECH!

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive

People like Disgusted are the ones that scare me. How can anyone be so willfully ignorant?

Posted by Craig | Report as abusive

I am a Brit and think the violence in the US is more complex than whether people have the right to have guns or not. Forgive me if I am wrong – but a question to the gun control crowd – but don’t many Canadians own guns? If they do their crime level is very low compared to the US. Also here in the UK we do not have households with guns – but we have very high levels of crime and knife crime in particular – but even gun crime is on the rise – because the gangs can get them even if ordinary citizens cannot.
In many European countries it is okay to have guns – in fact in many scandinavian countries most households have a shotgun. These countries have a very low crime rate.

Now for the reason I think there is such a difference. America and Britain are very similar in many ways – they are both (for developed nations) very unnequal nations. The gap between the rich and the poor is huge in both countries. In the US 1% of the population control over 80% of the wealth. That cannot be good for any society – and certainly does not help the economy (those super billionaires do not spend it all – how could they – so effectively billions of dollars are taken out of circulation). In Britain we have similar situation – a very unequal country – but at least in Britain we have free healthcare and all citizens get a basic amount to live on. It is really small but it means they do not starve. Our healthcare system is great – it works well. I go to my doctors – it is a lovely building with about seven doctors and I can just ring and get an appointment when i want. I can also go private if I wish to so I do not have to use the free health care. But in many ways Britain is becoming more and more like the US – cutting the benefits system and running down the NHS. In Europe however they have excellent healthcare – brilliant benefits so no one has to starve or live in tents etc. I always notice when I go to Brussels or Paris or Holland – how clean it is – how safe it feels and how well most people look. Something I also notice in Canada.
Now I love the US – I have visited many times California, Florida, Carolina, New York etc – and I do not think guns are the issue. But I do think the fact that the words most developed nation has tent cities – where people are homeless and unable to even eat is totally and utterly shocking. You cannot have a peaceful society when there are so many have nots – and when so many people could become a have not due to the bad luck of losing their job or becoming ill.
I think both Americans and us Brits have to admit that our Anglo-Saxon model of capitalism has blown up in our faces and is not working. We need a new model and by trying to fix the old one and not realising what needs doing I am really afraid that a country such as China will end up being the world superpower in about ten years time. NOt good!

Posted by crackersan | Report as abusive

Boy! The topic of guns really obscures the scariest topic in this article: social unrest. I’ve seen precious little reasoned debate in the comments about the potential for social unrest in this country. Arguing about guns is just spitting in the wind.

Yes, of course arms will figure heavily in any social unrest, but what will be the tipping point? What are the factors that could cause widespread unrest and violence? Where will the likely flash points be? Who can envision the scenarios? Is anyone preparing for violent outbursts (other than flight or arming ourselves to the teeth?) If it comes to a civil war (which would likely pit those-who-have vs. those-who-have-not) does it matter who has guns? I suspect that whether you own firearms or not will ultimately be immaterial. Survival will require more skills than a firearm. (Though, I do acknowledge the role firearms will play in any scenario.)

Come on people! Put your brainpower to work on solving the real problems. The 2nd Amendment debate is specious. No one is going to take away our guns.

Posted by U.N.C.L.E. | Report as abusive

>>>Tent cities for the homeless have expanded outside a string of American cities, from Sacramento and Phoenix to Atlanta and Seattle, for people who are living the American dream in reverse. First they lose their jobs, then their health insurance, then their homes, then their hopes. The encampments are reminiscent of Third World refugee camps.<<<

Got pictures? I think you are grossly exaggerating the negatives, but that’s most likely a direct order from the most totally negative new service ever created. REUTERS.

Posted by aliveweb | Report as abusive

[...] economic crisis, gun dealers, recession, social unrest, United States, US According to Reuters, in the first two months of 2009, around 2.5 million Americans bought guns, a 26 percent increase [...]

AMMO—–lots and lots of ammo! Thats what I need.

Posted by Steve | Report as abusive

No one need worry about legal gun purchases. Now, if you were saying that ILLEGAL gun purchases were dramatically higher, the we should worry.

And the myth about countless tent cities is just that – myth.

Posted by Stephen | Report as abusive

Mike:
I don’t think anyone is saying there aren’t decent people who own guns; the problem is there are a lot of people owning guns who are not decent people. For these people, guns end up having an increasingly negative effect as they become an answer or a fallback to supposed problems. I imagine gun ownership also plays a part in overall fear generation, which for certain people could be amplified to a point where they act out in a potentially (and perhaps uncharacteristically) violent way.

I think Crackersan is getting more to the issue. We have monetary and social gaps that have a lot to do with this and a culture that has celebrated certain ideals which have left holes in our system and gaps between us as people.

Posted by s7 | Report as abusive

People like Craig are the ones who scare me.

Posted by borisjimbo | Report as abusive

Nice post “Disgusted”, you’re dead on, I mean back in the 1950′s no one hated blacks, no one hated asian americans it was like being in Candyland where the clouds are made of cotton candy and every road is called gumdrop lane. What what changes have been made.

This is why I wonder why people won’t let their generation take responsibility and prefer to blame it on everyone else. It’s the baby boomers who introduced all the deadly drugs to this country, it’s the baby boomers who made war first diplomacy second an ok tactic, it’s the baby boomers who voted in political monsters like Reagan/Bush/Clinton/Bush/Obama for the most part yet nothing it’s their fault, it’s always the young people.

Posted by Michael | Report as abusive

We all sit around and hope for the best, desire everything under the sun, look at others who do not and think poorly of them. I had a neighber ask to purchase some property of mine for use by his horses. I told him to use it as long as he wanted, Offered to put it in writing, do care if I get sued, and he still hasnt taken me up on it. Their is no faith in our fellow man, because we do not police ourselves. Want the drug wars in Mexico to stop, Turn in your pot smoking buddy. Want the economy to get better, buy something American Made Like a gun. every American should be a responsible gun owner. And every American needs to run for politics. Police your Neighbors shoot the Lawyers, and make the world around you the best it can be. How many people know someone who is losing there home and have offered no assistance because it is not there problem? How many homes have been abandoned only because the owner does not see a profit coming. How can we walk away being able to afford a home without facing real reprocusion.
Buy a Gun today or learn to speak Russian and Chinese tomorrow. But take the time to truly know how to use it. And purchase gun locks and ammunition lockable cases.

Posted by American | Report as abusive

for those who hate guns and gun owners, you need to realize that a gun never killed anyone. I have several guns and for 50 years they have sat here in my house, and not one person/human/animal/alien/tree/bush/you name it~ was ever killed by one of my guns.

people kill people, humans kill humans, animals kill other animals, humans kill animals, animals kill humans, animals kill people.

take guns away and people will start killing with knives. take knives away and we will kill each other with sticks, take sticks away and we will kill each other with rocks, take rocks away and we will kill each other with our bare hands.

Face it! It’s in our nature to destroy ourselves, guns or not. A gun is nothing but metal parts, perhaps some plastic or wood.

More people die by cars than guns. Let us ban cars/trucks.

Use some common sense for a change. The human race is and has been killing, conquering and ruling other humans since the day the first human walked this earth.
Until the last human dies nothing will change.

If every human perished today, and next week two more humans were introduced to the planet it would not be long before one would kill the other.

When it comes right down to it, every one of us would kill another human to survive.

guns only make it easier to survive, that’s all. Take em away and I’ll use a knife to survive. Take the knife away and I will use a baseball bat to survive.
take that away and I will use a rock to survive.
Get it?

Posted by BobM | Report as abusive

Someone earlier blamed the republicans for all of the hate in america. That is a lot of B.S.! People on both sides have created it and a lot of it stems from greed and jealousy. A lot of these young kids, blacks and whites both have grown up in the last generation where the parents lived off of welfare and exploited the system to get free money and not having to work. The hollywood liberals like Clooney, Jolie, DeNiro,Pitt, Penn,just to name a few of the most liberal, have produced and acted in movies that depict killing with guns as fun and cool and are the biggest hippocrites in the country. They do this and then have the gall to want to ban guns. Their movies should be banned everywhere in america. Things that people knew back in the 40′s, were that yes another country can attack us on our own turf and no, there are no free lunches, you have to earn a living. They had higher moral standards, there were no movies with nudity or indiscriminite killing and torture on tv. The young blacks these days all want to be “gangsta’s” and the young whites think it is cool so they want to be like them.
The only easy way they see to get this lifestyle is through force and intitmidation and they have to steal and deal drugs to finance their own little wars in the US.When you change that way of thinking,then maybe you will start to see a change in gun violence, but until then all law abiding gun owners need to protect their right to own guns and ammo. The democrats intend to take both away from you, they are the ones who are the problem.

This is an interesting one. Regarding the gun issue, I have nothing against guns being owned for sporting purposes, but as far as “anti-personnel” weapons (which of course include Smith & Wessons designed to blow the average person’s head off and not to shoot deer) we would all do well to remember what Homer said: “The blade itself incites to violence”. We don’t carry swords any more (at least outside Glasgow) and we shouldn’t carry guns or have them readily available for the same reason.

The magic words in the rest of the article are: “In housing alone, more than $5 trillion has vanished”. Hooray, finally somebody has twigged. The money hasn’t gone anywhere, it wasn’t stolen by naughty bankers. Asset values are not worth the paper they’re written on (and incidentally why has nobody blamed accountants for this mess yet?) until you receive the money in your hot little hands, and anyone lending on the basis of asset values, or borrowing for that matter, would do well to remember it. House prices can go down as well as up. You may not get back the money you invested. House purchase may not be suitable for everyone, etc. etc.

Posted by Matthew | Report as abusive

BobM –

You seem to be missing a crucial point about the use of guns in your brilliantly broad and unsubstantiated statements. Shooting a gun at someone is far easier than beating someone to death with your bare hands.

A decision to end a life with a gun can be made far too easily but to continue to beat the life out of a human being with just your fists requires some perseverance (I imagine!).

I don’t hate guns or gun owners but I dislike the apathy that surrounds gun control.

You demand that we “use some common sense for a change”. Would you care to start the ball rolling?

Posted by Edward | Report as abusive

This blog was written by a man who has no concept of American culture or human nature, much less a grasp of journalistic principals.

First of all, he’s basing his anti-gun opinion on two anti-gun sources — NPR and a Washington Post COLUMNIST who is paid to spew vitriol, not report the “news.” Boom Boom, credibility is shot.

Second, Scapegoat much? There is neither logic nor evidence to back up stupid conjecture that Americans are buying guns because of an ailing economy or fear of some economically disadvantaged and violent “other.” That’s sheer racist scapegoating on the part of an anti-gun, anti-American, anti-Civil Liberties, anti-Constitution left wing.

People are buying guns for the simple reason that Obama has installed the most socialistic, big-government, repressive, anti-libertarian government America has ever seen. We fear that our CONSTITUTIONALLY GUARANTEED RIGHT to own a firearm will be stripped from us by our increasingly repressive government.

Seriously, if people were worried about the economy, they would spend money on food and fuel. Guns don’t pay the bills, except for the criminals that would benefit from the stripping of our rights to legally own firearms.

The author of this blog isn’t even a credible debater. At the least, he should present both sides so he could attempt to counter the valid arguments against his position. But in his anti-gun and anti-American glee to portray Americans as violent, fearful and desperate, he doesn’t even mention that both Obama and Clinton have gone on record both before and after the election as supporting FURTHER RESTRICTIONS on gun ownership, this despite the Supreme Court’s validation of private gun ownership rights in 2008.

Posted by Todd Foltz | Report as abusive

The right to keep and bear arms is a specifically- enumerated-right. Remember those three words. Like air and water, human beings have a right to be able to defend themselves. With firearms, knives, a hoe, etc. Only convicted felons and the mentally incompetent are excluded from this right.
I think the biggest issue today is the “entitlement generation”. People from all over have become expectant that – without working for it – they should get the best that democracy has to offer. And when they don’t get it, they get angry and lash out, sometimes with deadly effect.
One big issue for the common person is fear of getting caught between the uprising of the drug fueled, I-don’t-accept-responsibility-for-my-own -actions types, and the increasingly socialist government that is sooner or later going to use the standing military to keep them selves in power. Joe and Jane Doe are caught in between, and it is up to them, and every other person individually, to defend themselves.
Anyone that thinks the government is responsible for defending you needs to look into the “no duty to protect” laws in force all over the nation.
And for those parents who are raising “entitlement” type children, look in the mirror. There you will find the ultimate cause of what the younger generation has become.

Posted by Dennis | Report as abusive

I am pro-gun, anti-Obama, and generally anti-republican and anti-democrat.

I agree, its actually amazing there aren’t large scale riots. I think the difference is in America, most people do not like aimless riots. There are many riots in America though, like the Oakland riots, which actually do not register high in America’s conciousness because black riots are so common.

I don’t own a gun to kill people. I own a gun to keep from being killed. I don’t own a gun because I’m paranoid. I own a gun because there are
real threats in the world. I don’t own a gun because I’m evil. I own a gun because I have lived long
enough to see the evil in the world.
I don’t own a gun because I hate the government. I own a gun because I understand the limitations of government.
I don’t own a gun because I’m angry. I own a gun so that I don’t have to spend the rest of my life hating myself for failing to be prepared. I don’t own a gun because I want to shoot someone. I own a gun because
I want to die at a ripe old age in my bed, and not on a sidewalk somewhere tomorrow afternoon.
I don’t own a gun to make me feel like a man. I own a gun because men know how to take care of themselves and the ones they love. I don’t own a gun because I feel inadequate. I own a gun because unarmed and facing three armed thugs, I am inadequate. I don’t own a gun because I love it. I own a gun because I love life and the people who make it meaningful to me.

Police Protection is an oxymoron. Free citizens must protect themselves. Police do not protect you from crime, they usually just investigate the crime after it happens and then call someone in to clean up the mess.
I own a gun. And I know how and when to use it.

Posted by Geoff Morris | Report as abusive

You hit some good points in the article. Funny thing is that you cannot purchase bullets if you tried. Go online and check wholesale retailers. Some places stopped taking back orders. You may can pick up quality hunting ammo for 15 bucks 20 shots. Who wants to spend that kind of coin for target pratice? There are going to be a million guns floating around with no bullets to fire.

Posted by Slickboobah | Report as abusive

A very interesting article with a very worrying theme. Being British I can’t comment on the whole ethos of owning firearms( you cannot own semi and fully automatic weapons here ), but obviously if criminal elements own guns it’s natural to want one to counter that threat. We have some of the most strict gun laws in the world, but still hardly a week goes by without somebody being gunned down in the street. Clamping down on legal gun sales makes no difference because there will always be a healthy black market. In England you can buy S&W’s,Berettas,AK47s and pretty much anything you like if you know the right people.
The genie’s out of the bottle and it’s too late to put the stopper back.

Just a quick thought for the author:

Don’t you think that the huge increase in gun and ammunition purchases might be tied to the fact that many gun owners (or people who are considering becoming gun owners) are greatly concerned that the current government is radically anti-gun and will make it the next best thing to impossible to buy guns. People aren’t buying guns in a hurry because they’re depressed, angry, or scared of the current situation, They’re doing it because they’re afraid that if they wait, they won’t be able to do it later if they need to.

Posted by halfbear | Report as abusive

I lived in California for the last 35 yrs of my life. In the inner city, guns go hand in hand with growing up. Either you’re using it to get your way or respect, or its being pointed at you, loved one or bystander near you. Guns are a part of an American’s heritage but that cowboy story is ancient history. I just bought an S&W sig .40cal handgun for my first gun purchase. I’ve practiced many times with friends in the desert and in gun ranges but didn’t own until now. Dear Uncle Sam is on life support. The good citizens have continous gun law restrictions put on them each year in an attempt to punish the criminals with guns and lower good citizen ownership. But what criminal buys a gun in a gun shop legally? So we buy pea-shooters to defend ourselves while the criminals get the assault rifles and MGs underground. Our rights are slowly diminishing thanks to the homeland security policies Bush has implemented. Our right to exercise freedom of speech can get us thrown in detainment centers they now have set for so called convicted terrorist or illegal immigrant migration into the US.By the time we notice all the constitutional violations our former and new administration has committed the dollar will completely fail, and the NWO will arrive. If Americans riot their city over a NBA championship game, imagine what will happen when the banks fold, mass unemployment, major retail stores and supermarkets fail and the law enforement gets pulled back out of our city to let us destroy each other before martial law kicks in. “The man with the gun will make the rules on the streets.” I won’t put my faith in a gun to save me cause I have invested my eternal life to a Saviour who prophecied all of these things to come to pass…good day gentlemen outside the US, and Godspeed

Since 1998 (maybe sooner, I don’t know), a noticeable proliferation of violence on TV occurred, in my view. There were less shows focused in other aspects of human life; the most admired shows often show-cased brutality, even if ‘the good guys’ won in the end. Whether profit was the motive for proliferation, as these shows might be quicker and easier to write and produce; or, whether a change in public taste came first, I do not know. But, now, I believe, a general public taste for viewing violence and speaking in cruel, brutal terms has developed.

Hallmark channel is producing new movies which focus on peaceful resolution of family conflicts, and these movies are well-done and seem very popular among many people I know; we turned with relief and pleasure to these hopeful, yet honest films. There must be other channels doing the same thing. But, too many Americans in crisis are choosing to make a violent ‘end’ to their difficulties. This month alone, in the U.S. there have been more than 50 deaths from such choices, according to the press.

Hopefully, we as a people will generally continue to choose non-violent, constructive responses and solutions out of our very difficult circumstances. On April 15th, there will be a series of ‘Tea Parties’ across the country to express opposition to the direction the country is now taking. I am proud of these Americans for choosing this non-violent, organized way to focus and channel their frustrated energies and promote their visions and goals for our country.

Posted by Shirley Freeman | Report as abusive

[...] may get that bad and burglary becomes a pastime for some here in the UK who are driven to crime. The Great Debate

I am a gunsmith and almost all of my customers (recently there have been a lot more of them) are hard line Republicans who do this “buy all we can” every time a Democrat takes office. I do hear the occasional “stock up on canned goods and water”, but not because of the economy, but because “Democrats are going to run this country into the ground.”

Posted by Vector | Report as abusive

This is about the conservative movement, the Christian GOP, their media, politicians and rank & file and their egregiously inciting and driving to violent anger the extremist lunatics among them…..
……..whom they know full-well are listening……
Their numbers include the Christian White Supremacist militia movement… These irrational extremists are convinced that drastic measures are in order…by the likes of Limbaugh, the entire corporate media, GOP and their politicians, Beck, Hannity and company….and they strike!!…hard!!
And many people have been murdered, maimed and had their lives destroyed by them.
But the conservative culture in America is behind them 100%.

Posted by Tom | Report as abusive

“But the conservative culture in America is behind them 100%.”

-Posted by Tom

No its not. Not every conservative is religious. I’m an atheist and I despise Obama’s domestic policy. Wake up. The liberal movement is fueled by old theories recycled from anarchists movements from the 70s. Each successive president swings further and further from the middle, and wields more and more power. Stupid debates about gun rights,abortion, and capital punishment are clearly spelled out in the constitution. The right to life. And rule #2. Its not rocket science. I would love to jump into the TV argument, but unfortunately the people I would be talking to are watching something completely useless instead of reading the news or book or even interacting with their families.

Posted by Patrick | Report as abusive

Interesting article. I think the gun issue–always flammable when people in the US begin talking, illustrates the great divide between Europeans and Americans, and regardless of which side you fall upon, it is not a simple issue to solve (unless, perhaps, you are simple yourself). The writer seems to be fairly ignorant of some basic facts about the US–outside of metropolitan areas much of the land is remote from law enforcement, so for many people gun ownership is just pragmatic–the sheriff might take upwards of an hour to get to my home, as an example. It is true that there are a population of paranoids who cache guns and walk around in camouflage, expecting an apocalypse courtesy of the Democratic (or Republican) Party, but I think most Americans find this thinking a little simplistic. Also, holding up Canada and Europe as examples of low crime areas for us to follow are a bit of an apples an oranges argument–Canada is still basically culturally homogenous (I know, I know, the Quebecois are a distinct cultural group) but the US is a true melange of people, and more so every year. By the way, I’m not sure what part of Canada you’ve travelled in, but having travelled extensively there in my life, I can think of quite a few very down and out places in Canada that are full of gun toting rednecks–it’s not a uniquely American experience. And as to shameful poverty, go talk to some of the tribes in northern Ontario and ask them what they think of the majesty of Canadian justice. The British, by the way, can take great pride in laying the foundation for much of our strife by their enthusiastic promotion of slavery for about two hundred years of our history, so English moralizing is a little bit disingenuous. It’s one of those eternal legacies of our birth nation, right there with the Magna Carta and Yorkshire pudding. It’s also ironic that many people who are so passionate about wanting to understand the nuances of societies around the world are so tone deaf to that concept when it pertains to the US. I had to laugh when I read about clean and safe European cities that we should emulate. That one falls under “another good story ruined by an eyewitness”. The description of “tent cities” of homeless makes it sound like there are Darfurs all over America. Yes, I’ve seen the encampments, I’d liken them more to tent cul de sacs or whatever. They exist but to say they are extensive is just BS. The writer’s content may sell well in England, but I think it was a pretty shallow and ignorant attempt at describing an element of our society that is a little more complicated than his breathless polemic described. Finally, I’m always fascinated at the amount of knowledge that British and other Europeans have of our country and our beliefs, since it is so rare to find you here visiting. To base your opinion of America on movies, TV and slipshod journalism like this screed,that the majority of Americans are paranoid, gun caching boobs who hate the government (which we just peacefully elected) who gleefully ignore vast swaths of tents full of starving homeless stretching to the horizon would be like me determining that all Brits are a bunch of tea drinkers who survive on bad food, crappy weather and all have amazingly bad teeth, courtesy, no doubt, of an amazing national dental package. All the while surrounded by decaying ghettos of ranting immigrants bent upon imposing Sharia law and destroying you. Now that would be a generalization, right? Perhaps the lesson for us all would be ‘”people who live in glass houses should not throw stones”. Best, etc. etc.

Posted by Brian McMurdo | Report as abusive

Brian McMurdo’s comments are notable to me.

As are those of Geoff Morris
April 3rd, 2009 6:04 pm GMT


I don’t own a gun to kill people. I own a gun to keep from being killed. I don’t own a gun because I’m paranoid. I own a gun because there are
real threats in the world. I don’t own a gun because I’m evil. I own a gun because I have lived long
enough to see the evil in the world.
I don’t own a gun because I hate the government. I own a gun because I understand the limitations of government.
” etc.,

Yep. But I also own a gun because of those evil insurgent paper targets !!! Man, they sure feel lucky…

But now I also know how to reload, and yes, you can find all the stuff, AND ammo, you just gotta be persistent.

To anyone reading this thread who has made a first time firearm purchase recently or is considering doing so… Firearms for personal defense is the epitome of “Martial Art”.

Study, get training, regular practice, or you might be better served by ordinary running shoes and a baseball bat. This is serious business, ownership does not equal ability, or worse, “safety”, and it is so very easy to go to jail because you thought you were doing something right ! or get sued ! etc., bad bad…

SAFETY SAFETY SAFETY

Posted by Allen Francom | Report as abusive

Guns are not the problem its the crinimals are overly lenient judges that are the problem

Posted by SPURWING PLOVER | Report as abusive

I enjoyed the article. I support the second ammendment and voted for Obama. To think a president could ammend an ammendment to take away the right to bear arms seems absurd.
It is my opinion that Liberals, Democrats, and Republicans all own guns. Not to say that every person in the good old USA owns a gun however, there are Liberals, Democrats, and Republicans that own guns.

The second ammendment was written for all Americans not segregated groups.

Posted by Chris | Report as abusive

I’m surprised some one has not taken a pop shot at some of these CEO.I’m not a gun owner but after seeing all this crap ,makes me want to buy a gun. The attitude of these company’s ceo is mind blowing. The free market in our country is a joke just like the US Congress ,not to mention both parties. If I ran my business like some of these so called experts ,loaning money to people who you know can’t pay you back and rewarding people that make those decision to do so. I COULD GO ON AND ON, a little bit of common sense could go a long way.

Posted by bogdan tarabanovic | Report as abusive

It has more to do with President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder’s political ideals than it has to do with any recession fears. These two men and others in the administration are far-left politically and they hate firearms. They desire to re-institute a ban on firearms.

Posted by Dusty | Report as abusive

Increase of firearms purchases has nothing to do with the economy. It has everything to do with protecting yourself against a radical leftist President and his henchmen determined to, first, regulate and then, second, confiscate weapons from the American people.

The people are arming themselves to protect not against their unemployed neighbors but rather against a potentially authoritarian government. The first thing the totalitarians of the right (Fascists) and of the left (Socialists/Communists) do when they come to power is attempt to disarm their people.

This government, if it should make the same attempt sometime down the road, will find the American people will “not go gently into that good night.”

Posted by WorldNomad | Report as abusive

WorldNomad – I think your statement is true for many people, but only because it would also be true to say that “generally far more gun owners are republican than democrat.”

However, I’m on the other side (flaming liberal), and I’ve had a couple handguns for years, but when Bush started to rob citizens of their liberties in the name of national security, I went out and bout another handgun and a rifle – for similar reasons to yours.

Oppressive future governments has always been at least as much of a concern to me than personal protection.

Although I didn’t buy more guns when Obama was elected (by me), I did participate in the run on ammo because I was concerned about his ownership of both congress and the senate, and his historically anti-gun position.

I wish more liberals owned guns. They are the compassionate people, the vegans (i am one of those too), the vegetarians, the advancers of civil liberties, and those are the people I want armed when the s__t hits the fan…not people like Rush Limbaugh, Dick Cheney, Karl Rove.

Posted by robert | Report as abusive

Wake up people! There are 10 amendments in the Bill of Rights for a reason. Focus only on the guns and let them coopt freedom of the press or restrict freedom of speech, or blithely ignore search and seizure laws and eventually you wind up all by yourself with lots of guns hoping they don’t come after you next. Don’t think the right wing will protect your 2nd amendment rights any better than the left. They will just say they want to take the guns (or any of the other guaranteed liberties) away from the “bad” people, criminals, terrorists, drug dealers, immigrants, the poor. One day you will find yourself on that list with no rights to a free and fair trial.

Posted by Shadowrider | Report as abusive

I have just got to leave a comment on this, I have been reading here and I am just shaking my head. The ignorance I see is unbelievable. First, to the idiot who stated that this is a democracy, well, first of all, this is supposed to be a Constitutional Republic, this is so that 51% of the population doesnt legislate tyranny on the other 49%. Boy did you flunk history class and really hooked up the umbilical cord to the cool-aid tv tube. Your brain has been washed, this also goes to the ones who keep thinking in the left-right paradym, hellooo! The dems and the repubs are working the same policies, they just highlight different aspects of the same plan, and do the same things that the other does, just under the radar more than what they publicised. Obama, who was heralded by the mainstream media (now that should have been a red flag there) who are bought and paid for by the corporate elite, who actually have the money to control this, well, the list goes on with them. But, the old devide and conquer, give the illusion of separate parties, own the “opposing” mouth pieces, and keep the sheep distracted while taking everything from them one piece at a time. Have you ever seen them repeal anything the other party does? I havent, at least nothing of value, they just add onto it and runn with that ball, or bury it. Has the war criminals been indicted? Patriot act repealed? A real investigation into 9/11? NO you havent and you wont, because they work together to accumulate more power for the government and less for you. Left right is a lie and a brainwashing technique, get out of that, it IS us and them, but not the way your thinking, it is the people, and the government now, the police dont protect and serve as much as they enforce “policy” of the “rulers”, and also act as extra tax collection through absurdities. Wake up, as for the idiots who want to twist the 2nd ammendment….heh, maybe you should READ and stop parroting your fox news hero or something, a well regulated militia is a well stocked and maintained militia…what is the militia?….it is the whole of the people, not the collective, but individuals working together which is the “unorganized militia”. Back then, there were no police, there was no military in the time of peace, the people themselves were educated and respected what it meant to be armed, and its primary purpose was to throw off a corrupt government, so if you think the government should be registering and giving permission through permits for a right that was to keep that same government in check is a good idea, you should get some chickens, and find a fox to guard them for you while your sleeping. Idiots.

Posted by RSBL | Report as abusive

[...] it’s not possible to keep the pot from boiling over, torchlight parades could occur, and considering the number of guns owned by Americans, the situation could become very ugly. That is no doubt behind the preparations for mass [...]

[...] it’s not possible to keep the pot from boiling over, torchlight parades could occur, and considering the number of guns owned by Americans, the situation could become very ugly. That is no doubt behind the preparations for mass [...]