Home > 1st Amendment, 2nd amendment/guns/weapons, General > Violence: Peeling back the layers– Video games, music, and movies

Violence: Peeling back the layers– Video games, music, and movies

December 17th, 2012

venn1

Most of us aren’t ready to stop talking about the mass murders of Newtown, Connecticut.  I have tried to stop and I can’t.  I keep thinking guns and mental illness and their life-threatening intersection.  Guns and mental illness become the common denominator for all of our mass murders.    However, there is a sub layer to all this violence that we also need to talk about.

Video games, movies and music are also a vital part society that is feeding the violence.   God only knows what kind of violence is on video games. I won’t look.  I pop bubbles and have frogs spit balls in my video games.  No one over the age of three likes my games.  However, I know they are out there.  Video games are very life-like.  The people look pretty much like people.  How many video kills do we have to do before we are just desensitized and indifferent?  At what point can we not come out of our game mode?  Where do we draw the line?

Some music is horrible.  It romanticizes death, shootings, rape and mayhem.  I want it banned.  I no longer care about someone’s first amendment rights.  There are so many movies I won’t watch.  We used to call them splatter films.  I don’t know what I would call some of them today.

We really need to think about censorship.  It isn’t about sex.  It is about the gratuitous violence that society watches and in some cases, imitates.  I would far rather catch my grandson watching porn than some of the movies I know are right there on my cable TV.  At least sex is normal.  Blowing people’s faces off at point blank range is not normal.

We aren’t ready to stop talking about these things and we should not be.  The question becomes, how do we balance our “rights” with  some punk’s desire to flood our society with violence of the most unimaginable sort?

What person mows down 20 little children and 6 adults in cold blood?  What makes a person kill his mother?   What did any of those people ever do?

We need to start talking about common sense solutions.   The right time is now.

  1. Lyssa
    December 18th, 2012 at 04:32 | #1

    We are consumed by anger and have accepted it. Talk Radio extremists and gangster lifestyle have been supported. People are killed over shoes and jackets.

  2. December 18th, 2012 at 05:40 | #2

    Really good article: I am Adam Lanza’s Mother

    http://thebluereview.org/i-am-adam-lanzas-mother/

    Mental health services are so expensive also. Most insurance only pays half. You can’t just lock someone up. They have more rights than you do.

    My heart goes out to this woman.

  3. December 18th, 2012 at 05:52 | #3

    I have also heard on the grape vine that Prince William County police officers will have a presence at all Prince Wiliam county schools for the rest of the week, to reassure students and staff, in light of events in Newtown, CT.

    Officers and detectives called on principals to let them know of their presence in the schools and around the area. Thumbs up to the best Police Department in the area.

  4. Second Alamo
    December 18th, 2012 at 07:27 | #4

    The general public used to look upon their representatives in congress as an example to follow in life’s dealings. Today the people in congress are a poor example to follow for anyone. Talk about violent accusations and corruption! Look at the groups that politics spawns. Why there are those vicious packs of people called tea baggers who had the nerve to protest the actions of congress. You can’t get more violent than that. Those signs have sharp edges you know. Seriously, this entire barrage of violence in all media is upheld under ‘freedom of speech’ which was never the intent under the Constitution. I’ve made this argument before, but was attacked for doing so.

  5. Lyssa
    December 18th, 2012 at 07:50 | #5

    You were attacked based on your argument of for where you laid blame? Your comments above are non partisan so it hard to think you were attacked for being so open.

  6. December 18th, 2012 at 08:12 | #6

    I would put a third element of into that veen diagram.

    Denial.

    In every recent case, there is someone that knew that the person was a danger, and yet did nothing.

    • December 18th, 2012 at 09:47 | #7

      Have at it. Making that one wasn’t all that easy.

      I disagree. Read http://thebluereview.org/i-am-adam-lanzas-mother/

      Many people seek help with a son (or daughter) and find none. Services just aren’t there. Then there is the story of this struggling mother in the above link.

      Easy to say if you have never dealt with it. What do you do when they are over 18? You cannot force commitment for more than 72 hours. You cannot even make someone get psychiatric help if they don’t want to.

      I think those are some words you should take back.

  7. blue
    December 18th, 2012 at 08:46 | #8

    The circles of the issue are useful, but only when the gun politics of the liberal left are removed. Lets be clear, if the goal here is to be safe from all violance, we can do like we have done in reaction to 9/11 and spend $ trillions through more and more intrusive government and regulate away the 2nd amendment right – (history would suggest that has not worked out well for anybody) or we can start to act like adults and focus on the problem. If Newtown is the tipping point, lets also make possession of fertilizer illegal (Oklahoma) knives illegal (china) , pistols illegal (Ft Hood). Lets do a TSA like search on all high schoolers, all engineering students, all military officers who are muslem. I suppose, at aminimum, we should put metal detectors at all schools, movie theaters, shopping malls and political rallies– but sooner or later, somebody will do something horrible somewhere else of via a new means – driving an F-150 throguh a building or something.

    My point is that only that too many are already focused on repeating rifles, automatic rifles and calling them assult rifles. Is there an assult knife we need tomake illegal,

    • December 18th, 2012 at 09:50 | #9

      i was going to suggest using common sense. How liberal is that?

      You obviously haven’t applied any in your suggestions.

  8. Starryflights
    December 18th, 2012 at 09:00 | #10

    I would agree that the entertainment industry has much to explain.

    But From what I read this morning, this kid was not known to be into violent video games or anything. He was into shooting real guns and his mom kept at least a half dozen in her house. She taught him how to use the weapon he used to kill her. That and mental illness are more salient issues.

  9. Need to Know
    December 18th, 2012 at 09:26 | #11

    The pension plans of teachers, municipal workers and other non-profits were among the biggest investors in Freedom Works, the company that makes the Bushmaster, which was the weapon that caused most of the deaths at the school.

    http://money.cnn.com/2012/12/18/news/cerberus-bushmaster/index.html

    The private equity firm that owns Freedom Works is now trying to sell it after the massacre last Friday.

    The holdings of these pension plans are usually public information. Apparently no one cared.

  10. Need to Know
    December 18th, 2012 at 09:40 | #12

    I keep thinking about the hypocrisy of the investment decisions some of these pension funds and non-profits made. California has among the toughest gun control laws in the nation. Nonetheless, the California public teachers’ pension fund has been knowingly investing in the manufacturer of the assault weapon used to murder twenty children.

  11. Need to Know
    December 18th, 2012 at 09:56 | #13

    CNN/Fortune seems to be really digging into this story:

    http://finance.fortune.cnn.com/2012/12/17/the-money-behind-the-massacre/?iid=EL

    Looks like California public school teachers own over 6% of Freedom Works (manufacturer of the Bushmaster assault rifle used to murder 20 children) through their pension fund.

    Some of you who are defenders of public school teachers, my guess is that you would be pounding down the door of the pension fund’s investment management people if you found out something like this. People need to know what they own.

    • December 18th, 2012 at 10:56 | #14

      Who knows what all is in VRS. I have no clue. We all might own part of it.

  12. Censored bybvbl
    December 18th, 2012 at 10:00 | #15

    I once was part of a team that judged a children’s art contest where the participants were from the local schools. One could see from their paintings/drawings which children were troubled/angry/depressed – as well as which were friends and probably copied each other. Art is often one of the first subjects on the chopping block when school funds are scare, but it can offer a hint of what might be going on in a child’s life.

  13. December 18th, 2012 at 10:51 | #16

    @Moon-howler
    Oh, I wasn’t suggesting that you change it…sorry. Just adding to it verbally.

    If she knew that her son was that disturbed, she should have removed the guns. If I ever show signs of mental imbalance (determined by someone OTHER than my wife ;) ) I’ve told my wife to get rid of the guns. If any in my family showed the same, I would remove the guns.

    THAT is what I am talking about. She informed “baby sitters” not to turn their backs on him.
    If there is that much of a problem and she’s keeping weapons in the house….that’s denial.

    As for the other problems… I agree with you. I think that more money needs to be re-prioritized to mental health. However, then we are back at the problems that closed the hospitals in the first place. From what I’ve learned, it was the abuses that occurred. The ACLU and others accomplished in closing the hospitals…saying that the patients could survive in public with their drugs. Even then, as a teenager…I saw the fallacy in that. And the states went along, knowing that they could save money for other priorities.

    • December 18th, 2012 at 12:41 | #17

      That Venn diagram was a pita.

      She knew he was different but there are no indications that she thought he was dangerous. not everyone different should be kept from guns. He obviously should.

      How do you know she told baby sitters that? Why?

      I think it is far too soon and there has been too little official information released to start speculating.

      Why do you think this woman was in denial?

      re closing facilities–3 Faces of Eve, Snake Pit, were all the books of the times. I don’t know if it was the real abuses or the attention that came from books. They still use shock therapy on people, all these years later. I think it was a horrible plan. When I was in college I was a psych major with a concentration in abnormal. We went to all the facilities. It was horrifying. The people *I* saw could never live on their own. Now those were the days before all the modern psycho-tropic drugs so who knows. The problem is, many of those people (and that is using the word people loosely) weren’t with it enough to even take their medication.

      Some of the things I saw still haunt me to this day. I came back and decided I never wanted to be involved with that as a career. Some of what I saw was far too gross to ever put on the blog.

  14. December 18th, 2012 at 10:54 | #18

    @Need to Know

    FreedomGROUP owns Bushmaster.

    FreedomWORKS is a political action group.

  15. Need to Know
    December 18th, 2012 at 11:05 | #20

    @Cargosquid

    Thanks for the clarification. The CNN/Fortune articles used both names. They should clarify as well.

  16. Cato the Elder
    December 18th, 2012 at 11:11 | #21

    Moon-howler :
    Really good article: I am Adam Lanza’s Mother
    http://thebluereview.org/i-am-adam-lanzas-mother/
    Mental health services are so expensive also. Most insurance only pays half. You can’t just lock someone up. They have more rights than you do.
    My heart goes out to this woman.

    Wow. At what point do we just say that a kid is a bad seed though? I mean, we have all these excuses for bad behavior today. Nobody is responsible for anything they do. My father would have beaten me within an inch of my life if I had pulled some $hit like that on my mother. I remember the first time my dad heard me say the F word – now *that* was a beating for the ages…

    • December 18th, 2012 at 12:51 | #22

      It apparently didn’t do you much good. :twisted:

      Of course, I am kidding you.

      When I went to school, you behaved in school so people didn’t think you were ‘white trash.’

      Your behavior was a direct reflection on your parents.

      I got a few of those “reminders” myself. Once I instinctively threw up my arms to block being slapped by my mother for giving her some slack jaw. That didn’t go so well in my camp when my father found out.

      Was the father even mentioned in that article? I am not sure that kid would have responded.

      I can’t relate to kids that don’t have a little fear…..

  17. punchak
    December 18th, 2012 at 11:35 | #23

    Do you really believe that “beatings” help kids behave? Short term perhaps, but in the long run?

  18. Cato the Elder
    December 18th, 2012 at 12:30 | #24

    When I say beating, I don’t mean giving the kid a black eye. I surely got my butt whooped many times with belt, paddle and switch both at school and in the home. When I cursed, my mother would make me eat a handful of dirt then wash my mouth out with soap. And yes, it taught me that there were swift and severe consequences for bad behavior. I don’t even want to think about what my father would have done if I made a threat against my mother’s life.

    I don’t think there’s enough of this going around today. Bring back corporal punishment to the schools. Stop coddling these little self-entitled monsters and send them to the office for the paddle.

  19. Elena
    December 18th, 2012 at 13:58 | #25

    Well, Cato, what can I say about your suggestion but stupid. Sorry, not the kindest response, but give me a break. Yes, stop violence with violence, fabulous idea. We all need to start at home with change.

  20. Starryflights
    December 18th, 2012 at 14:53 | #26

    The gun industry itself promotes a culture of violence. Just look at how they named their weapon, “Bushmaster”. “Look at me, although I am a little man, I have a bug gun, I am Master of the Bush!” Give me a break!

  21. December 18th, 2012 at 15:43 | #27

    Cato, I am going to defend you here. There is an overall feeling amongst many kids that nothing can happen to them and “you can’t touch me” mentality. Pretty much, they are right.

    Back in the day, if you were naughty and bothered others, bullied, stole, were disrespectful etc, the principal could paddle you. I don’t think it happened often but it was still out there and it was a big deal. Kids were better behaved in general and the boundaries were clearer.

    I have never thought that corporal punishment belonged in classrooms. There is too much room for abuse.

  22. December 18th, 2012 at 15:47 | #28

    @Need to Know

    How would they know? You hire investment specialists. Often money is buried in mutual funds and company names are deceptive. I have no clue who VRS has invested with. I am told that Hedge funds handle most of it because of the huge amount of money involved.

  23. December 18th, 2012 at 15:49 | #29

    @Censored bybvbl

    Most people don’t know how to interpret the disturbance though. You have an eye for such things.

  24. Starryflights
    December 18th, 2012 at 17:01 | #30

    McDonnell: Arming principals might help

    By Laura Vozzella, Tuesday, December 18, 12:23 PM

    Gov. Robert F. McDonnell said Virginia should consider arming
    teachers, principals and other school staff in the aftermath of the
    school massacre in Newtown, Conn.

    “I know there’s been a knee-jerk reaction against that,” McDonnell (R)
    said in a radio interview Tuesday. “I think there should at least be a
    discussion of that. If people were armed, not just a police officer
    but other school officials who were trained and chose to have a
    weapon, certainly there would have been an opportunity to stop
    aggressors coming into the schools. So I think that’s a reasonable
    discussion that ought to be had.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/va-politics/mcdonnell-arming-principals-might-help/2012/12/18/fedbc0c2-4929-11e2-820e-17eefac2f939_story.html?hpid=z2

    Hmm. Firearms training and qualification will apparently be a job requirement for teachers here if our Gov gets his way.

  25. punchak
    December 18th, 2012 at 17:28 | #31

    I’m sure there have been times when a teacher has had the urge to do away with a kid.

    Who’ll pay for training and weapons, I wonder? I mean, teachers are so expensive as it is. Would we be willing to now give them “hazard pay”, like we do military deployed in war zones?

  26. Emma
    December 18th, 2012 at 17:37 | #32

    Interesting Venn diagram, but I think it goes much deeper and more personal than just generically “mental illness”. How many times do we have to hear that a killer was a loner, didn’t fit in well, was bullied? This is by no means an excuse for murder, of course. But humans are supposed to be social– we need to fit in and feel like we belong somewhere. The child who is relentlessly shunned, ridiculed, ignored or isolated is not going to thrive, is not going to feel like he or she belongs, and he or she may grow up despising the whole social fabric and seek to destroy it.

    If I had only two choices–arm a teacher with a gun, or make that teacher accountable for recognizing bullying and initiating interventions so that every child feels welcome and accepted in the classroom, I think I’d pick the second. Social isolation is a killer.

    It’s not the answer to the problem, but it’s a start.

    • December 18th, 2012 at 18:51 | #33

      @Emma, I will have you know that those are hand-made, personalized Venn diagrams. No laughing allowed!

      As we agree that all mental illness is not the problem, all guns are not the problem. Some of this is a unique troublesome sub-set.

      When some guns run into some forms of mental illness….then you got trouble.

      I agree with the dilemma of arming teachers. Your plan is far more effective. It also isn’t easy for those who already have a full plate and today, all teachers have a full plate.

  27. December 18th, 2012 at 17:47 | #34

    @Starryflights
    I see a job opportunity there! Woohoo! I’m already qualified.

  28. December 18th, 2012 at 17:53 | #35

    @Emma
    But it isn’t just a choice like that. I agree with you on the social training… but the gun is needed for a different problem The only shooters that were kids were Columbine. And I don’t know if they were diagnosed as crazy.. sometimes evil suffices.

    People are wondering about who is going to pay for arming and training school personnel. Well…that would depend on what you want that person to do, I guess. If the the teachers are going to stay with the kids and defend them… there doesn’t need to be much training. Personally, I’d do it on my own dime because I’ve had state qualifications for non-law enforcement…and they suck. Basically, it teaches what end of a gun to point downrange.

    Perhaps, instead of arming teachers….we train them in a different way. We train school people to keep kids safe during fires. We build schools to fight the fires too. Well, now we have a different fire. Redesign the school to assist in protecting the kids.

    • December 18th, 2012 at 18:56 | #36

      That would require some definitel retrofitting but makes a lot of sense actually. In the long run it might be cheaper.

      Parents still have a hard time understanding why they can’t just go to the classroom.

  29. Lyssa
    December 18th, 2012 at 18:21 | #37

    Again, people leave countries like Pakistan, Iraq and Somalia so they don’t have to live under armed guards or carry weapons. Are you all saying we SHOULD be more like Somalia, Iraq and Pakistan? I have a problem with that.

    No one responded to the question -if Austrailia, Canada and England have many times fewer homicides by gun and they have the same percentage of mental illness, violent US movies and violent US video games what are they doing differently? Talk funny?

  30. December 18th, 2012 at 18:42 | #38

    How insulting to Law enforcement–it sounds like those who suggest that teachers arm themselves think that just anyone can do the job of a highly trained Police Officer.

    Oh well, many people think everyone can teach…I guess the cops now get reduced to anyone can do their job. UFB.

  31. December 18th, 2012 at 19:00 | #39

    @Lyssa
    Actually I did respond.

    Australia, Canada, and England have ALWAYS had a lower gun crime environment, even when gun ownership was unlimited. So, its partly culture. Secondly, England, Canada, and Oz are isolated. We, on the other hand, have a long unsecured border and a drug problem. And our racial/cultural issues are worse. And lastly….in danger of not being PC, if black on black crime was removed from the picture, American gun crime would be as low, if not lower, than Europe’s. So, we need to fix the culture of the inner city.

    Baltimore murder map: It’s interactive and can be adjusted to show results per race, age, etc.

    http://data.baltimoresun.com/homicides/index.php?range=2012&district=all&zipcode=all&age=all&gender=all&race=all&cause=all&article=all&show_results=Show+results

    The ratio of the number of black people killed to the percentage of the population is very high. White vs black crime is very rare, so I’m supposing that other black people killed these black people. There were 7 white shooting victims, no women. 168 black shooting victims, only 10 of which were women. No Asians. 2 Hispanics, no women.

    At least, I’m assuming that these are the victims. It does not say, but, it would be hard to determine the killer if not caught.

    The racial make up is about 64% black, 30% white, and 4% Hispanic.

    So, we do have some different issues than do these other countries. While their countries seem to be less homicidal, our country is less violent over all. England is considered the most violent country in Europe. On a per capita basis, the US has less violent crime per 100,000 than the UK, Austria, South Africa, Sweden, Belgium, Canada, Finland, Netherlands, Luxembourg, and France. What is ironic is that our violent crime rate is descending while theirs is rising. As is the gun crime. Ours IS higher…but dropping.

    One thing to realize also is that our “intentional homicide rate” is not even close to the highest in the world.

    • December 18th, 2012 at 20:45 | #40

      Great Britain has all sorts of racial problems. They have high crimne.

  32. Starryflights
    December 18th, 2012 at 20:59 | #41

    Most mass murderers are white, as are their victims. What did race or border security have to do with this? The difference between us and Britain/Australia is that the latter have fewer guns. Simple.

  33. Starryflights
    December 18th, 2012 at 21:17 | #42

    Oh, my grade school principal wore bifocals. She also had bad knees and was not in the best of shape. I doubt she would have been much use in a firefight, but now we expect her to be Rambo? Arming teachers and exoecting them to be cops is a stupid idea. McDonnell is a moron.

  34. kelly_3406
    December 18th, 2012 at 21:48 | #43

    @Moon-howler

    Actually I am not suggesting that people perform the functions of the police. I am saying that laymen rained in self defense, especially since the police almost always respond after a crime has been committed, which is too late.

    There are already mechanisms in place for teachers to perform and be paid for additional duties, such as student council advisor or athletic coach. In a similar way, I see absolutely nothing wrong with teachers being paid to undergo training and provide an additional layer of security for schools if they so choose.

    • December 18th, 2012 at 22:06 | #44

      I am not sure I would want those who volunteer to do that job around MY kids. Its just a horrible idea. You don’t see anything wrong with it because you aren’t a teacher. Its just another ploy to dump more responsibilities off onto teachers. Is there any duty they aren’t expected to perform?

    • December 19th, 2012 at 01:44 | #45

      That sends a message to cops that anyone can do their job. Not so sure what it says about teachers other than they are chumps waiting for another duty to be piled on.

    • December 19th, 2012 at 01:47 | #46

      One more thing….How many teachers are prepared to kill another human being? Before we start arming the teachers let’s have that discussion. Most teachers are nurturers, not takers of life. Cops have a hard enough problem when they have to shoot to kill.

      I havent heard anyone who has actually spent time in the classroom suggesting such a thing. It is all from people who havent been there…at least with children. I think McDonnell might have taught a few college classes. BFD. Not the same thing.

  35. December 18th, 2012 at 22:16 | #47

    I am missing something here. Why are people upset over the California Teachers’ fund because it has gun company investments?

    There is a demand for guns.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/18/gunmaker-investments-newtown_n_2325323.html

    The manufacturers are the last people I would blame.

  36. December 18th, 2012 at 23:23 | #48

    @Starryflights
    Don’t be simplistic. Its not only about “mass murderers.”

    • December 19th, 2012 at 01:48 | #49

      I read today that most gun violence doesn’t result in death. Thinking about that…I guess gun threats mean many other nasty things happen?

  37. December 18th, 2012 at 23:27 | #50

    @Moon-howler

    Because teachers and liberals (notice…I was nice and separated the two.), aren’t supposed to be involved in any way, shape, or form with scary, black rifles. And its the liberals that are calling for a gun ban. And California is one of the biggest gun banners in the country…and yet…they’re making money off of guns.

    Oops.

    But the manufacturers are getting the blame. And the networks are cancelling the “gun shows.” Funny…NBC just cancelled the shooting sports show, 3Gun Nation, which shows expert, safe gun use. But its keeping the violent, fictional shows which glorify actual violence. Hypocrites.

    • December 19th, 2012 at 01:53 | #51

      I would get rid of the fictional shows first. @Cargo. I don’t like all the things that go on with private sales. i think we are at the point where everyone goes through the same check. (sort of like 287g)

      Manufacturers shold get some blame…like enticing sales gimmicks. But they have the right to manufacture most of their products. I would ban some guns. I wouldnt ban all guns. I would also unfairly give Smith and Wesson more leeway than I give some other companies.

      Most teachers, at least in Virginia, aren’t liberals. Its a good thing to separate that out.

  38. punchak
    December 18th, 2012 at 23:56 | #52

    @kelly_3406
    I believe you’re responding to my comment.

    Are you aware that a lot of people feel that teachers are overpaid?
    Are you aware that taxpayers might balk at having to pay for weapons and for shooting training?
    Are you aware that citizens might disapprove of having armed teachers in their children’s classromms?
    Have you considered the fact that, probably, most teachers would refuse to be armed?
    Have you considered the astronomical cost of law suits that might be filed against a teacher who, even while defending his/her class, DOES hit and/or kill one of the students?

  39. December 19th, 2012 at 00:00 | #53

    @Moon-howler
    I couldn’t resist. I’ve been a bad boy. I went there to discuss things and found the biggest collection of idiotic, rambling, emotionally overwrought commenters that I’ve seen on Huffington Post. And that’s saying A LOT.

    And I made fun of them. Didn’t even have to work at it.

    OMG…what a bunch of…. Never mind.

    There wasn’t one thread of argument in the whole bunch. Sad.

    • December 19th, 2012 at 01:55 | #54

      Where? FAcebook for Huffington? I dont read the comments on Huffington unless I know the person which is rare.

      I just read the articles. sounds like playboy, doesn’t it.

  40. December 19th, 2012 at 00:05 | #55

    @punchak
    I think that he does. But your scenarios are not so one sided.

    Some people think that teachers are overpaid..yes. Its a complex situation, mainly dealing with distaste for public unions and what those entities have become.
    Taxpayers MIGHT balk. They might not. And if the teachers wish to, let them pay for it themselves. Air Marshals have to. And CCW training covers much of what the teachers would need.
    Citizens might disapprove, and thus the program would not be implemented.
    Most teachers might refuse to be armed or even work with armed teachers. Or they might not.
    We have armed guards in the schools now. Are they in danger of law suits. Protective laws can be written.

    Just because these scenarios are possible does not mean it shouldn’t be discussed. If it gets declined… we move on.

    • December 19th, 2012 at 01:56 | #56

      The armed guards in schools now are highly trained.

      What is it that air marshalls have to do ?

  41. December 19th, 2012 at 00:25 | #57

    @Cargosquid
    Heh. All but two, and those were actually good comments, were “approved.” Funny that neither of those were abusive.

  42. Lyssa
    December 19th, 2012 at 06:42 | #58

    So Australia, Canada and England have a different culture and fewer weapons. Gee, I wonder if that’s related?

  43. Need to Know
    December 19th, 2012 at 07:24 | #59

    @Moon-howler

    Regarding pension plan holdings, sometimes it’s hard to get the information, especially if it’s buried in hedge fund holdings. I question the wisdom of investing in hedge funds because of their exploitive high fees, offensive compensation levels for managers, and overall mediocre performance, but that’s another story. Private equity holdings, such as the firm that owns the Bushmaster manufacturer, can be more transparent. Pension funds generally don’t publish lists of their holdings. However, as an agency of the State, a lot of information can be subject to FOIA. Moreover, all pension funds have investment policy statements. Stakeholders can insist that those statements exclude certain types of investments, and demand accountability and documentation that the policies are being adhered to. Well-diversified “socially responsible” portfolios have been documented to perform on par with portfolios that hold tobacco companies, assault rifle manufacturers, etc.

  44. Lyssa
    December 19th, 2012 at 08:00 | #60

    WASHINGTON — The National Rifle Association on Tuesday said it was prepared to offer “meaningful contributions” to ensure that events such as the massacre of 20 children and 6 adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., “never happen again.”

    The NRA said it planned to hold a major news conference on Friday, but did not say what it would announce.

  45. December 19th, 2012 at 09:37 | #61

    @Moon-howler
    I thought that I could find the link…but when the Air Marshals first started, the gov’t actually didn’t want them, but were forced by popular pressure to provide them. So, the training site was isolated and any candidates had to pay their own way to attend, once accepted. It has been some years since I read this. I used them as an example of the fact that motivated people will pay their own way for increased responsibilities and training.

    @Lyssa
    Not really. England once had a higher gun ownership than we did, with less gun crime. Their rate didn’t really change.

  46. December 19th, 2012 at 09:38 | #63

    @Lyssa
    The NRA can offer all the “meaningful contributions” it wishes. What they offer does not concern anyone other than their members. I’m curious as to what they will say.

  47. Pat.Herve
    December 19th, 2012 at 11:46 | #64

    @Cargosquid

    I think you have bad information on the Air Marshals – they are highly trained, and do not pay their own way.

  48. December 19th, 2012 at 14:07 | #65

    @Pat.Herve
    Oh, they are highly trained. But the problem was that the training facility was placed in an awkward locale and those wanting training had to pay for their own transport, etc. This HAS probably changed since the program did not go away.

    But those that went, especially in the early days, overcame some difficulties to accomplish it. I was actually praising them and using them as an example that people are willing to step up to safeguard others.

  49. December 19th, 2012 at 14:51 | #66
  50. Pat.Herve
    December 19th, 2012 at 14:51 | #67

    @Cargosquid

    what you are saying about the air marshals is not true – not now, not then. Cite you source, and I will be corrected.

  51. December 19th, 2012 at 18:11 | #68

    Pat, I said that I might be wrong already and that I couldn’t find it again. Its not that important.

  52. December 19th, 2012 at 21:15 | #69

    @Moon-howler
    Just saw this question….

    This is why any arming should be voluntary. One has to make that decision BEFORE taking up arms.

    • December 19th, 2012 at 21:36 | #70

      It is beginning to sound like one must make that decision bbefore taking up teaching.

  53. December 19th, 2012 at 23:34 | #71

    @Moon-howler
    Maybe.

    I’ve already made the decision…long ago.

    But then, shouldn’t everyone decide what their limits are, just in case its necessary to find out?

    • December 20th, 2012 at 00:35 | #72

      I don’t think anyone really ever knows what their limits are. They just think they do. Perhaps its rational limit setting rather than actual limit setting.

  54. December 20th, 2012 at 01:00 | #73

    First you have to intellectually decide whether certain actions are permissible for yourself before you can entertain the idea of action.

    I thought long and hard on whether I could take actions that might take a life. I decided yes, I could. Now….whether I can actually do that, or whether I freeze in action, or whatever, has to wait until that situation develops, if ever.
    But you cannot come to that place, without first deciding if you can or cannot, first.

    I had to decide this when I joined the military in 1983.

Comments are closed.