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Police Swarm Bungie Office Over Halo Replica Rifle 746

Posted by Soulskill
from the armed-and-nerdy dept.
sv_libertarian writes 'A panicked person in Kirkland, WA called local police on Wednesday, claiming they saw someone walking down the street with an AK-47. It was actually a Bungie employee carrying an overgrown model of a Halo sniper rifle, which resembles an AK-47 as much as a Volkswagen resembles a Formula 1 racer.' Halo 3: ODST is set to launch on September 22nd, and fans got some new details and early looks at the game during PAX.
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Police Swarm Bungie Office Over Halo Replica Rifle

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  • AK47? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:11AM (#29340405)

    Yeah that looks just like an AK47...

  • Ah, paranoia (Score:5, Insightful)

    by DesScorp (410532) <DesScorp&Gmail,com> on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:12AM (#29340419) Homepage Journal

    Maybe Congress can attempt to pass an "Assault Replica" bill.

    I've never understood the logic of banning a gun because it looks scary. American "assault rifles" are semi-automatic. Pull the trigger, and one shot comes out. Politicians want to ban them because they look intimidating next to, say, a standard bolt-action Ruger 30.06. This is like banning a V-6 equipped Camaro because "it looks fast".

  • by houghi (78078) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:12AM (#29340427)

    But it looks very much like something real to me. Sure you can make fun of people not knowing it does not look like an AK47. I can also imagine that somebody who knows very little about riffles would say 'ak47' where he means 'looks like an assault wepon that is not like any standard hunting rifle'.

  • by commodore64_love (1445365) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:17AM (#29340467) Journal

    their way to the local farmer's market called 911 saying that they thought they saw someone walking down the street with an AK-47

    I've seen people get paralyzed because a black beetle crawled across the kitchen counter. I suspect many people have the same irrational fear of guns, therefore if you carry ANYTHING that even resembles a gun their first instinct is to call for help (aka "call 911"). It's a phobia which is NOT rational, and it's no wonder they irrationally identified a toygun as an AK-47.

    >>>officers advised Bungie officials to transport the gun more discretely in the future.

    No. Read the Constitution mister cop (you know, that thing you pledged to protect, but apparently never read). Carrying a flag, sign, or other item is considered "symbolic speech" according to the Supreme Court and therefore protected.

  • by Vinegar Joe (998110) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:20AM (#29340495)

    At least the cops reacted appropriately, both to the initial information they were given.....

    Since Washington is an open carry state where it's legal to carry a firearm openly, how was their reaction appropriate?

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by solevita (967690) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:28AM (#29340575)
    I think the actual reason is to stop people holding up banks with replica guns; after all, if you're not planning to shoot anyone, you can hold up a bank with a replica just as well as with a real gun. No neither to worry about finding bullets or all that cleaning either.
  • by dunkelfalke (91624) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:30AM (#29340597)

    Bullshit. The Americans are just scared of someone walking around. [msn.com]

  • by Rogerborg (306625) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:33AM (#29340623) Homepage

    +1 Informative, -1 Angry Ranting Nerd.

    Washington may be an open carry State, but are fully automatic firearms legal there? Are weapons with a caliber larger than .50 legal? Google before answering, and look at the size of the 'weapon' in question.

    Under Washington law, it is an offence to open-carry with the intent to cause alarm. A bystander was alarmed enough to dial 911. It's up to an officer to determine whether that alarm was intentional.

    So the police investigated, determined that no crime had been committed, and left some sensible advice. Advice, not orders. Seems about right to me.

    Next time you hear about some scruffy looking guy dragging a massive gun down the street, and you choose to move towards that person, then you get to armchair quarterback police response to firearms calls. M'kay?

  • by NoNeeeed (157503) <slash@@@paulleader...co...uk> on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:33AM (#29340625) Homepage

    Whether it resembles an AK47 or not, it still looks like a scary looking piece of kit to the untrained eye. I know nothing about guns, and while it looks comically oversized, I wouldn't automatically assume it was fake.

    As a part-time theatre tech, I sometimes have to transport fake guns for shows, and I always do it discreetly. Just because I know they are fake, doesn't mean other people will, or indeed should know. It's not like people take classes on gun recognition at school. Unless you have an interest in such things, I don't see why you would know what different guns look like.

    Reminds me of that girl who strolled into an airport with circuit-boards, wires and blinking lights attached to her jumper, and was surprised when security got rather twitchy. It might not have looked like a bomb to you and I, but to the average person bought up on a diet of Hollywood films, where the bombs always have sticky out wires and flashing lights (and beep, just to let you know they are there), it certainly looked suspicious.

    At least in this case the police were a bit more calm and restrained once they figured out what was going on.

  • by bcmm (768152) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:33AM (#29340627)

    I've seen people get paralyzed because a black beetle crawled across the kitchen counter. I suspect many people have the same irrational fear of guns, [...] It's a phobia which is NOT rational

    The thing that makes the beetle phobia irrational is that the beetle involved is harmless (well, technically I'm probably making an assumption about what part of the world you're from there). Whatever you think about gun control, you surely don't think they aren't dangerous. What exactly would you consider a rational phobia?

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nurb432 (527695) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:46AM (#29340785) Homepage Journal

    You go on believing that.. Its all about the disarming of America, little by little.

    if they can stigmatize ownership enough people will be afraid to own.

  • by Lorcas (1299955) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:47AM (#29340799) Homepage
    It's becoming more and more troublesome to have people use general terms for stuff they don't know. Instead they learn one specific term and apply it to the whole field. In this case, AK-47 instead of gun or automatic rifle, or for computers where every part of it is a hard drive. This is beginning to annoy me.
  • by iphayd (170761) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:51AM (#29340849) Homepage Journal

    Right, but in this instance the police acted appropriately... They were alerted to a potential threat, contained it, discovered it wasn't a threat at all and left. No charges were filed, and a suggestion was given that would result in a whole lot of police and Bungie staff not having their time wasted.

    To the guy that said carrying the gun was political speech. Bullshit. In this instance, an employee was carrying a piece of equipment from point a to point b. That equipment just happened to be something that the general public took as a threat. The police suggested a way to alleviate time wasted in the future.

    If they were to actually carry this item as political speech, it would be wise to alert the police that you are doing so _before_ you start marching around with a fake gun. Otherwise, you are _very_ likely to be looking down the barrel of a very real gun.

  • by timholman (71886) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:52AM (#29340857)

    >>officers advised Bungie officials to transport the gun more discretely in the future.

    No. Read the Constitution mister cop (you know, that thing you pledged to protect, but apparently never read). Carrying a flag, sign, or other item is considered "symbolic speech" according to the Supreme Court and therefore protected.

    There's such a thing as being right, and there's such a thing as being stupidly right.

    Sure, I have the right to do lots of things. I can stand up in a PTA meeting and say: "I think we ought to reconsider if sexual relationships between students and teachers are really such a bad thing." I can walk up to a group of Hispanics and say: "I really think this country would be better off if you moved to Mexico." According to the Constitution if have the right to do it, but having that right, and dealing with the consequences of exercising that right, are two entirely different things.

    Walking down a street carrying what looks like an assault weapon to the average guy on the street is just begging for trouble. Notice that the cop didn't say "Don't carry the replica." He said: "Be discreet. Don't cause people to panic." There is a big difference between the two.

    When it comes to exercising and fighting for your rights, choose your battles intelligently. A mature adult chooses discretion and consideration when dealing with his fellow man, not meaningless confrontation just to prove a point.

  • Well, with the exception of the UK (too far gone past 1984) this kind of shit doesn't happen in strictly gun-controlled western Europe, because seeing such a gun is so unlikely that most people will assume it's a toy or something.

    Our pigs are just as fucktarded as the typical US donut muncher, but they have the luxury of not having to assume every jaywalker is going to start shooting. As a result, they still have to use their hands or not-100%-lethal flashballs to beat up journalists. Old school shit. Should they pull their guns, they would have to fill lots of forms afterwards, and that would considerably eat into their free time. So little time, so many pastis bottles to empty.

    Anyway, I trust the 2nd amendment brigade will vote me down with thoughtful historical references to Hitler taking the guns of the Jews (that's exactly how WWII started) and Stalin denying conceal-carry to Sakkharov resulting in the Cuban missile crisis, but I thought you needed to be reminded of the cost of that particular hobby, err I mean "freedom."

  • by schon (31600) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:58AM (#29340949)

    Washington may be an open carry State, but are fully automatic firearms legal there?

    An AK-47 is semi-auto, not full-auto, so your question is irrelevant.

    Are weapons with a caliber larger than .50 legal?

    Again, the AK-47 is *SMALLER*, so why are you asking?

    Google before answering, and look at the size of the 'weapon' in question.

    The police were called about an AK-47 - not a "big gun I don't know the name of", but (specifically) an AK-47. Seeing as the caller specifically said AK-47, the cop's response should have been "AK-47's are perfectly legal to carry in the open."

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by wagnerrp (1305589) on Monday September 07, 2009 @11:59AM (#29340953)
    By that same logic, you can hold up a store with a banana in your pocket. Posturing that you have a gun can often be just as effective as showing one. We should outlaw all of the phallic fruit.
  • Replica guns (Score:4, Insightful)

    by slim (1652) <john AT hartnup DOT net> on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:00PM (#29340969) Homepage

    In the UK, this could easily result in prosecution for carrying a replica gun. I'm not opposed to that law.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jabuzz (182671) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:01PM (#29340973) Homepage

    That is because the police got very tired of the hassle and expense the massive inquiries that inevitably followed when some moron pointed a replica gun at someone, and a police marksman shoots them.

    Personally if you point a replica gun at someone, especially a policeman don't whine when you get shot.

  • by P0ltergeist333 (1473899) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:01PM (#29340983)

    In an age where it is not unheard of for a citizen to gun down schoolmates and coworkers, I think erring on the side of caution when someone is wielding a dangerous looking weapon in a populated area is appropriate no matter what the gun laws are. And I am not a fan of the police by any means.

  • by ceoyoyo (59147) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:05PM (#29341025)

    Which makes being alarmed when a stranger walks down a city street with a huge gun not a phobia.

  • by Bigjeff5 (1143585) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:07PM (#29341041)

    The problem with your view is the fact that it is perfectly legal to carry an un-boxed assault rifle in Washington.

    I would agree with you if he were brandishing it at people, that crosses the line, but just carrying it? Since when can you expect to be harrassed by the cops for doing something that is legal? I don't know what kind of world you want to live in, but extrapolate that out to other situations and you've got yourself a big-brother style police state.

    What should have happened is this:
    Irrational scared citizen: "There's a guy with an AK-47 out here, help!"
    911 Operator: "Is the person pointing it at anybody?"
    Irrational - "Well no, but he's going to shoot someone I know it!"
    911 - "I'm sending a squad car out, stay on the line and tell me if he starts threatening people."

    Now, if Bungee employee is dumbass enough to start pointing it at people, pretending it is real, he desearves what he gets. Same with someone brandishing a real gun. But if he's just carrying it, then the cop shows up, investigates, and tells the guy it would be a good idea to keep the gun in a case so he didn't frighten his neighbors.

    Swarming Bungee is definitely overkill. If what someone is doing is suspicious but not illegal, you send someone out to make sure it doesn't become illegal, or they don't intend to do something illegal. Hell a few phone calls to nearby business would probably have hit Bungee and they'd have said "Oh shit, that's our employee, it's not a real gun, it's replica of a video game gun."

    If you think that anytime someone sees a gun anywhere 911 should be called, you're an idiot. You're the dumbass who has been watching far, far too many mind-numbing action movies, and associates the mere presence of a gun with murder. You're an idiot, plain and simple.

  • Re:AK47? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Razalhague (1497249) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:10PM (#29341095) Homepage

    why would you expect

    I expect people to recognize the gun if they call it by name.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by maharb (1534501) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:11PM (#29341115)

    We are already disarmed. The purposed of the clause in the constitution was to enable the general public to have equal ability to overthrow/control the government if it tried to overstep its boundaries. That is what our nation was founded on and that is what the founding fathers wanted to give the people. Now are are just like every other nation, ruled by our government and not the other way around. In terms of relative firepower the best a regular citizen can get might as well be a water pistol compared to what the government has.

    They don't even need to stigmatize gun ownership. Rather than taking guns away they are just taking the ammo away. Every store I have been to lately has been out of nearly everything that most guns use excluding shotgun shells and .22's. Now you can buy all the guns you want and still be unarmed.

    All this to stop what? Urban violence? I am sorry but just because big cities have a problem with guns does not mean the solution is banning them. Politicians need to get out of their sheltered city environments and see why gun ownership is not such an absurd idea. See that most gun owners are true Americans and not gangsters.

    If everyone was disarmed a criminal will still be able to get guns, and if they can't they will still be able to get other weapons. Banning guns to fight crime is like banning cheeseburgers to fight obesity. They are related but there are other ways to get fat than cheeseburgers.

  • by eln (21727) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:18PM (#29341185) Homepage
    The police investigated a complaint involving someone walking around outside an office building with what appeared to be an assault rifle. Would you rather they had told the caller it was probably just a replica, and hung up? How were they to know it was an employee with a fake gun rather than, say, someone on his way to massacre the occupants of the building, without going over and investigating?
  • by kindbud (90044) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:21PM (#29341207) Homepage

    It always amazes me that gun owners fail to understand that when people talk about their feelings towards guns, they are really talking about their feelings towards gun-wielders. In this case, the Halo rifle was not walking down the street by itself. It was being wielded by a person. The 911 caller was alarmed by the person carrying what they thought was a powerful weapon.

    So remember kids, when we're talking about guns and gun control, we're really talking about gun toters, not inanimate objects.

  • Just irresponsible (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Stan92057 (737634) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:21PM (#29341215)
    Walking around town with a fake gun that looks extremely real is just stupid and irresponsible. I dare anyone to walk around there own home town and see what will happen,because the police will come calling on you, thats a guarantee. Now maybe if it were the 1800,s you can get away with walking around town with a rifle but not today ya wont.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:23PM (#29341235)

    who did, in fact, break into his own house*

    Your entire post is wrong, from the details to the conclusions.

    What happened was that Gates & his driver couldn't get into the front door because it was jammed. He unlocked it just fine, but couldn't get it open. So then he went around to the back door, which opened just fine. Then with the help of his driver they forced the front door open, and carried the luggage inside the house... during which time a "concerned citizen" called police to report that a black man was breaking into a house.

    Now I'm not saying that Gates was all in the right, from what I've heard he was pretty much a complete dickwad when the cops showed up, and from what I've heard, the cop was a complete dickwad as well. The fact that Gates had a key didn't matter apparently. The cop got pissed because Gates didn't supply an ID when the cop demanded one, which you actually don't have to do when you're inside a house. The cop additionally did not attempt to verify his identity, which could easily have been done with a phone call, he was too focused on being King Shit and throwing his "authority" around and mad as hell that a black man would dare to tell him no. This has been an ongoing problem with the police department, which is probably part of why Gates was pissed, and probably why this got so blown out of proportion.

    Think about it this way. The cops show up at your house, acting like aggressive elitist assholes, and demand you provide proof of your identity (which you don't legally have to do), because some busybody neighbor doesn't like your skin color living on her street, and then force their way inside, and when you provide proof of ID and that you live there, they then arrest you because they didn't like your tone or attitude.. would you sit back and say "well, gee, I guess it way all my fault". Ya right, you'd be mad as hell, and have every right to be.
    Everyone admits, Gates should have simply said, "Well, I live here. You have a report of a break-in, and my front door has obviously been forced open recently, so yes I understand why you need to talk to me. Hold on while I get some proof."
    The cops should have showed up, and when the guy in the house got angry, simply said "Well we have a report of someone just breaking into your house. Since you don't want to provide ID we'll sit in front & back of your house until we can verify that there is not a break-in or proof of your ID".

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:24PM (#29341245)

    That's great that you've instructed your children on "The Three Rules." Perhaps now you should learn them yourself? I sure hope they're not learning from your example.

     

    I have two loaded handguns in my house right now.

     
    And for my next trick, I'll copypasta the third rule, and perhaps you can compare these two statements and see what is amiss...

     
    "3. ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use."

     
    And that uppercase is the NRA's, not mine. Next time you get all sanctimonious and YayGuns!, maybe you shouldn't shoot (Hah! See what I did there?) yourself in the foot while doing it.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:1, Insightful)

    by ravenshrike (808508) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:32PM (#29341343)
    Um, hate to tell you this, but the ammo shortage is because there's not enough production. The ammo companies aren't going to increase their production lines too much because the increased buying was caused first by Obama's anti-gun tendencies and has continued because of the extremely large expansion in government power, which tends to worry people who stockpile ammo. In another year or two, the ammo shortage should ease up. Unless the dems make a serious push for any type of gun control.
  • Re:AK47? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:33PM (#29341367)

    Actually, considering that my neighbors are all upstanding, law-abiding citizens, I'd be thrilled if they all carried AKs. That'd be one helluva deterrent for criminals thinking about causing trouble.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:2, Insightful)

    by moxley (895517) on Monday September 07, 2009 @12:51PM (#29341585)

    The ignorance of the anti-gun people never fails to amaze me.

    If the world could be completely disarmed, where all guns would cease to exist, and nobody would have them, period...Nobody. Then I might agree that it would be a good thing.

    However, what you are advocating is ridiculous, because what you (and every other person who says similar stuff) are actually advocating, is that ONLY law abiding citizens should be unable to own firearms. Law abiding gun owners aren't the problem, the follow laws... They are the ones who sometimes stop crimes before the police arrive. They are the ones who have CCW permits and stop deranged sociopaths who are going on public murder sprees before they can kill or before they can kill as many people as they'd like to.

    Since your argument doesn't provide some magic that actually causes all firearms to cease to exist, criminals will still have them, they don't respect or follow laws, and such laws actually bring them comfort because it lets them know that when they do commit their crime, (especially if it's in public) they don't have to worry about a good samaritan stopping them...

    That's just the logic, without even getting into the constitutional/American heritage side of the issue.

    Your statement is such a simplistic view that has nothing to do with reality, and it's never going to happen.

  • Re:Replica guns (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Totenglocke (1291680) on Monday September 07, 2009 @01:03PM (#29341745)

    Yet you're perfectly ok with people being able to allow knives, which are infinitely more dangerous? Glad I don't like in the U.K.

    I may love the creative things that come out of the U.K., but good god you people are idiots when it comes to common sense and freedom. Brian Cox even said point blank in an interview on Top Gear about a year ago that since he moved from the U.K. to the U.S. he's realized just how horrible the U.K. is about violating people's rights.

  • The new math (Score:3, Insightful)

    by westlake (615356) on Monday September 07, 2009 @01:06PM (#29341799)

    And while they called out the SWAT team for a replica gun, people shrug their shoulders at Labor Day traffic, which kills a lot more people than any shooting spree. Human beings are absolutely terrible at risk assessment.

    The full weight of Labor Day traffic deaths is borne by fifty states and a population of 300 million people.

    The 2006 Amish school shooting spree occurred within a one-room schoolhouse in rural Pennsylvania.

    The body count doesn't tell you everything you need to know.

    Risk assessment isn't meaningful when a singular event overwhelms and devastates an entire community. When there are no mechanisms in place for recovery.

    The loss of the Titanic became more than an indictment of the technology and management of the vessel.

    It became an indictment of a social order in which the First Class passenger lives and Second and Third dies with her working class crew.

    That - in an instant - changed the survival equation for everyone in every setting.
     

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by NormalVisual (565491) on Monday September 07, 2009 @01:10PM (#29341849)
    f the world could be completely disarmed, where all guns would cease to exist, and nobody would have them, period...Nobody. Then I might agree that it would be a good thing.

    Even then it wouldn't make a lot of difference. The fundamental problem is with people, not [insert arbitrary weapon]. As long as there is anger, hate, jealousy, envy, prejudice, lust for power, and every other human emotion and failing that drives people to violence, nothing will change.
  • by the_raptor (652941) on Monday September 07, 2009 @01:10PM (#29341853)

    Bullshit. Nearly every major PD in America has carried AR-15's (civilian version of the M-16) in their patrol cars since shortly after the North Hollywood Shootout.

    Considering you are incredibly unlikely to encounter someone carrying an actual assault rifle (no semi-auto EVIL BLACK RIFLES!!!!1111 are not assault rifles, most traditional hunting rifles are deadlier than "Assault Weaponsâ") and doing so is entirely legal, it is silly to send five cars after someone just carrying one. What next? Do you want the police to send five cars when someone sees a "hacker" (aka someone with glasses and a laptop) sitting outside an office building?

  • Re:Ugh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) on Monday September 07, 2009 @01:29PM (#29342053)
    You're not far wrong... It doesn't look like an AK-47, but it looks scarily similar to a Barret M107.

    http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=50+cal
  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Maxmin (921568) on Monday September 07, 2009 @01:40PM (#29342155)

    ammo companies aren't going to increase their production lines too much because the increased buying was caused first by Obama's anti-gun tendencies and has continued because of the extremely large expansion in government power

    Huh? You who didn't notice the "extremely large expansion in government power" during the Bush era deserve to get your playtoys taken away.

    Didn't notice a one of you showing up to Bush's (few) public speaking engagements packin' 2nd amendment heat, not during the time he expanded the federal budget and deficit to new record levels, all the while crossing out sections of new law just cus his lawyers say he can.

    Now that you got a Democratic president, you're all up in arms. Whoop-te-do, you're at least five years late.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by cloudwilliam (517411) on Monday September 07, 2009 @02:02PM (#29342379)

    "Law abiding gun owners aren't the problem, the follow laws... They are the ones who sometimes stop crimes before the police arrive. They are the ones who have CCW permits and stop deranged sociopaths who are going on public murder sprees before they can kill or before they can kill as many people as they'd like to."

    Do you have an example of this? I haven't done a lot of research, but it seems that when "deranged sociopaths" do go on "public murder sprees," they tend to have specific targets in mind, say Columbine high school or the Holocaust museum, rather than just random murders of people. And in most of these exceedingly rare cases of mass murder, it's been trained professionals that put an end to the incident, not some Joe Blow packing heat. Even in situations where citizens did act--the Kip Kinkle school shooting and the September 11th flight over Pennsylvania, for example--they acted, and were effective, unarmed.

    I mean, sure, public murder sprees happen movies and NRA wet dreams, but not so much in real life. Hypothetical mass murders being an argument for concealed weapons is weak at best. It's specious reasoning because if someone's nutty enough to want to go shooting, they aren't likely to give a shit whether anyone out there is armed or not. You can't guard against something like that any more than you can prevent earthquakes or lightning strikes.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 07, 2009 @02:19PM (#29342533)

    However, what you are advocating is ridiculous, because what you (and every other person who says similar stuff) are actually advocating, is that ONLY law abiding citizens should be unable to own firearms. Law abiding gun owners aren't the problem, the follow laws... They are the ones who sometimes stop crimes before the police arrive. They are the ones who have CCW permits and stop deranged sociopaths who are going on public murder sprees before they can kill or before they can kill as many people as they'd like to.

    The hero mythology of the gun nut. I'll stop it before the police arrive! When in actuality, all that ensues is a gun battle with an increased probability of harm to by-standards. Also, accidental shootings kill close to 1000 people per year.

    Another flaw in your logic is that the police and other professionals will still have guns, so it won't only be criminals even in these ridiculous scenarios.

    [quote]

    Your statement is such a simplistic view that has nothing to do with reality, and it's never going to happen.

    [/quote]

    Lol. Says the person claiming that CCW permit holders are the silent police majority or something. I'm not advocating a total repeal of gun-ownership rights, but the idea that concealed carry creates some sort of alternative police force is pure nonsense. Who even wants to be "protected" by these wild-west loons?

  • by slimjim8094 (941042) <slashdot3@@@justconnected...net> on Monday September 07, 2009 @02:24PM (#29342577)

    To be fair, guns aren't used for much other than murder. That's kind of what they've been honed to do for hundreds of years...

    I don't think guns need to be banned, but nobody seriously carries a gun around to shoot cans with.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Princeofcups (150855) <john@princeofcups.com> on Monday September 07, 2009 @02:24PM (#29342581) Homepage

    They are the ones who sometimes stop crimes before the police arrive. They are the ones who have CCW permits and stop deranged sociopaths who are going on public murder sprees before they can kill or before they can kill as many people as they'd like to.

    The fantasy land of the gun proponent. There's a boogie man behind every corner out to get you, and the gun toting everyman hero saves the day. Sadly, nothing could be further from the truth. Legal gun ownership leads to nothing more than more guns in the wild for the bad guys to get their hands on and more gun accidents in general. The number of crimes foiled by gun carrying good guys is so small in comparison that it can barely be counted.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by sumdumass (711423) on Monday September 07, 2009 @02:31PM (#29342641) Journal

    IF you didn't notice, it's because you weren't looking. Gun rights advocates have spoken out against attempts during the bush administration to take guns from us. Bush didn't exactly support those attempts either. It seems to be the democrats that are so scared of what they are doing, they only feel safe when they can take a mans means of protection away from him.

    Now that you got a Democratic president, you're all up in arms. Whoop-te-do, you're at least five years late.

    So we should just give up and lay down? That's not the way it works. If you are just now finding out what is going on, then it's you who had the problem, not everyone else. Anyways, even if they were asleep at the switch, it's no excuse to all the sudden allow it to happen now. If it was wrong then, it is still wrong now, and if it's still wrong now, then you bringing up the past does nothing but show how much more important it is now to do something.

    Seriously, if someone started killing off your immediate family, would you give up and let them finish because you missed them killing the first few people? Or would you fight even harder to protect those who are left?

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Draek (916851) on Monday September 07, 2009 @02:47PM (#29342773)

    So, every single person in the world is either a perfectly law-abiding citizen who would *never* think of using his weapon for an illegal end (such as, say, intimidating his unarmed wife during a domestic dispute), or a hardened criminal ready to take anybody else's life as long as he can profit from it.

    Personally, I believe that if you really wanted to be a "good samaritan" you'd be carrying a knife, not a gun. Not only is it infinitely more useful in everyday situations, but there's significantly less chance of accidentally killing somebody with it. Because no matter what you may believe after your monthly hour at the shooting range, against a live person out to kill you you can (and probably will) miss, and that bullet doesn't vanish into nothingness midair.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hardburn (141468) <(hardburn) (at) (wumpus-cave.net)> on Monday September 07, 2009 @02:58PM (#29342879)

    Basically, almost all the people who actually know a thing or two about guns are on the anti-control side of the debate. When the people for gun control write laws, their experience is largely drawn from movies rather than any personal experience, so their laws end up being silly and ineffectual. They also tend to say things like this [phillyburbs.com]:

    "As unnerving as the Fort Dix terrorism plot was, it could have been all the more worse if the weapons of choice for alleged assailants had been .50 caliber assault guns instead of AK-47s," said Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, D-Mercer.

    No, it wouldn't have. In a close quarters battle (which is what the Dix guys were planning), a 50 cal is far too bulky to be usable; we should wish the terrorist were that dumb. An assault rifle, like the AK-47, is ideal for this sort of thing.

  • by sumdumass (711423) on Monday September 07, 2009 @03:02PM (#29342915) Journal

    What is the point of having a car that can go faster then the posted speed limit? In America, we work from the premise that we are free and can do things until prohibited otherwise. You can puchase a car that goes 200mph and have no legal way of driving it that fast, it doesn't mean that all cars will have a 55 or 70 MPH governor installed, it means that you can possess it and need to be legally responsible with it. Other countries may operate differently in which you can't do anything without getting permission first. We have gotten there yet.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 07, 2009 @03:07PM (#29342951)

    Law abiding gun owners aren't the problem, the follow laws...

    Right until the moment their spouse cheats on them, their boss fires them, Jesus or the devil starts talking to them in their heads, or whatever.
    You omit the fact that most criminals and insane murderers start out as law abiding citizens. Until one moment, when they snap under emotional or other pressure. If we - because it can happen to any of us - do not have access to guns in this moment, we might "just" beat our spouse before we come back to our senses. If we have access to a gun...

  • by RiotingPacifist (1228016) on Monday September 07, 2009 @03:42PM (#29343267)

    The main point of getting a car that can go faster than the posted speed limit is it will have much more power and be able to get to any desired speed faster than a car with a lower top speed. There are also plenty of places to use that speed (disused airfields, etc). There are ~0 legitimate reasons for having a silencer attached on public land

  • Re:AK47? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by oji-sama (1151023) on Monday September 07, 2009 @03:46PM (#29343305)
    Yeah, and I've never seen them snap...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 07, 2009 @03:46PM (#29343307)

    The stupid part is that anyone had to "vouch" for him in the first place. Not because he is famous either. It's not illegal to not have ID on you and he wasn't otherwise doing anything illegal. They could have questioned him but then he could have told them to go away. Apparently they brought him back to the hotel to be vouched for... which doesn't make any sense and is illegal if they forced him to do that.

  • by adiposity (684943) on Monday September 07, 2009 @03:55PM (#29343367)

    From 30 feet (say, across the street), it probably looks real enough. Nothing like an AK, of course :)

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Toonol (1057698) on Monday September 07, 2009 @04:00PM (#29343417)
    This isn't flamebait, obviously.
  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Toonol (1057698) on Monday September 07, 2009 @04:06PM (#29343479)
    Who even wants to be "protected" by these wild-west loons?

    *raises hands*

    I like living in places where the majority owns guns. It's safer. I don't own one myself, and probably never will, but not out of any opposition to gun ownership.
  • by Toonol (1057698) on Monday September 07, 2009 @04:15PM (#29343559)
    There's about fifty different ways my kid could quickly and brutally kill themselves or another person in my house, and there are no guns. I won't argue about the concern for safety; but I'm not sure there's a sensible reason to single out the risk from guns, when the staircase or powersaw represents a greater real danger.
  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jcr (53032) <jcr@[ ].com ['mac' in gap]> on Monday September 07, 2009 @04:17PM (#29343577) Journal

    Do you have an example of this?

    There were enough examples of this in Israel that the perps switched tactics. Trying to shoot up a shopping mall became ineffective, since the attacker didn't manage to hurt many people before being shot by several armed civilians. They started using improvised rockets instead, with a range of several miles.

    Hypothetical mass murders being an argument for concealed weapons is weak at best.

    Most of the time, when a firearm is used for self-defense, it's not even necessary to fire it. Just showing it to the perp tends to make them reconsider.

    -jcr

  • Re:AK47? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nschubach (922175) on Monday September 07, 2009 @04:48PM (#29343831) Journal

    Brand recognition is a powerful thing. Now, will you hand me a Kleenex so I can wipe up the Kool-Aid I spilled earlier while using my Yo-Yo. Then I can get back to Googling the internet for a few more Genericized trademarks. ;)

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 07, 2009 @05:03PM (#29343955)

    The ignorance of the anti-gun people never fails to amaze me.

    If the world could be completely disarmed, where all guns would cease to exist, and nobody would have them, period...Nobody. Then I might agree that it would be a good thing.

    However, what you are advocating is ridiculous, because what you (and every other person who says similar stuff) are actually advocating, is that ONLY law abiding citizens should be unable to own firearms.

    What you ignore in your "only the bad guys will have guns" 'logic' is that countries that do have strict gun control have far, far less gun-related problems than the US. You don't get the proliferation and escalation. And if you are thinking about coming up with the Swiss/Norwegian argument about high gun density without the problems - do more research on the _reason_ people have guns here. It is very very different than the US personal protection argument, and control and restrictions of guns for personal protection is extreme. I am Norwegian, and used to have a rifle. It was kept disassembled, locked down in separate locations, and it would take me the better part of an hour to get i operational. But much of the US attitude towards guns scare the crap out of me.

  • Re:AK47? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) on Monday September 07, 2009 @05:42PM (#29344275) Journal

    I think the following people should be excluded from gun ownership:

    - People without full mental capabilities
    - Criminals
    - People who are paranoid about terrorism
    - People who are paranoid about government
    - People who are paranoid about guns
    - People who are paranoid
    - People who are just generally afraid
    - Anyone who would actually buy a gun for themselves
    - Pretty much everyone, really.

    Unfortunately, the US is far too addicted to safely wean itself off guns. Now, the criminals truly do have the guns, and it's too late. Everyone needs to now keep up the arms race.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by michaelhood (667393) on Monday September 07, 2009 @06:08PM (#29344429)

    That's not entirely correct. The reason for that clause is primarily because the military was mostly disbanded after the revolutionary war, and the signers of that amendment wanted to ensure that somebody had firearms available. Possession of firearms was clearly linked, for that reason, to membership in a militia.

    Now you can argue about the purposes of the militia, your theory there is as valid as any other, but it was definitely not ever intended to be interpreted the way that the NRA interprets it.

    Our Constitution was designed and intended to limit what the federal government CAN do, not what the states and people CAN'T do.

    Once everyone understands this simple principle, it makes this part of the debate moot.

  • by msimm (580077) on Monday September 07, 2009 @07:18PM (#29344929) Homepage
    this:

    1) a gun is a weapon.
    2) a weapon is a tool.
    3) such tools can be used to directly influence life.
    4) any tool that can directly influence life also effects the socio/political balance of power.
    5) both the government and the people want/maintain power, usually for the same reasons.
    6) almost anything can be used as a weapon.

    Limiting how a tool is used is the right of any society. But forbidding access to such a tool is a sort-sighted attempt to effect the balance of power.

    Short-sighted because

    6) almost anything can be used as a weapon.

    Guns are powerful tools, but certainly not the only tools which can be used to threaten the balance of power.

    The kind of corny phrase 'guns don't kill people' is still as true as ever. People can and do use almost anything at their disposal to do it.
  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Planesdragon (210349) <slashdot.castlesteelstone@us> on Monday September 07, 2009 @10:59PM (#29346439) Homepage Journal

    All you need to do is read Obama's own words about the Supreme court decision in the DC gun control case to get an idea of where he stands.

    The President is not a King. He can have any opinion he wants, up to and including favoring a repeal of the 2nd amendment, and it doesn't matter jack shit until he can sell Congress on it. He also is on record as favoring a single-payer system, but if you notice that option wasn't even seriously considered for health care reform.

    As for the free speech zones, they were originally implemented by the democrats and historically used by them until your selective memory singled out Bush.

    Link, please. I've NEVER heard this before.

  • Re:Ah, paranoia (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jackbird (721605) on Tuesday September 08, 2009 @12:33AM (#29347071)
    Armed civilians? In Israel? Haha, no. (except for those yahoos in their settlements). Those gun-toting folks in every public place in Israel are soldiers and reservists on leave, and are required to have access to their weapon at all times. And the rockets are more a result of border checkpoints preventing armed terrorists entering the country than the presence of firepower in a given place.
  • by testadicazzo (567430) on Tuesday September 08, 2009 @03:37AM (#29348147) Homepage
    Reading the article, there doesn't seem to be any evidence that the person carrying the replica did anything remotely threatening. As for:

    The person who had thought they'd seen a gunman in the neighborhood had actually seen a Bungie employee carrying a replica Halo rifle back to the studio's offices, Bungie community director Brian Jarrard told me. Recognizing there was no longer an emergency, officers advised Bungie officials to transport the gun more discretely in the future.

    Note that the article says the employee was 'carrying' the weapon, and that police advised Bungee to be more discreet in 'transporting' the replica. So although there are no guarantees, the article certainly implies that the replica was just being carried.

    Me, I think the police should have advised the individual who called in not to be such a candy ass in the future. My personal, biased, unscientific risk assessment tells me we suffer far more from excess paranoia than we do from random shootings. I acknowledge that random shootings are a real problem in the U.S., but I think the paranoia we live under is a much bigger problem.

  • by modecx (130548) on Tuesday September 08, 2009 @01:49PM (#29354051)

    In 1997, the year that the FBI estimated firearms, they said there were 200 Million firearms in the US. The prior estimate in 1994, said that Americans owned 192 Million firearms. Just using this as a baseline, figure that our country gains 8 million firearms every three years, or 2.6 Million firearms per year. Sounds reasonable.

    Extrapolating that trend to 2006, in those 9 years it can be expected that we gained about 23.4 Million guns, for an approximate total of 230.4 Million.

    In 2006 there were about 18,000 homicides by firearm, and there were approximately accidental 43,000 deaths by vehicle accident. A 2006 DOT study said there were 135,399,945 registered passenger (consumer level, not buses or big rig) vehicles in the US, a number not completely out of parity, but dwarfed by the estimated number of guns for the same year.

    Those 135.4 Million cars accidentally killed over 2.3 times the number of people purposefully killed with those 223.3 Million guns. That tells me, pretty plainly that American gun owners take great personal responsibility over the use of their guns... They are in fact much more careful with guns than everyone else is with their cars--considering you have to be licensed, insured and all the regulations you need to obey to drive, while you need none of that to own a gun, I think that's quite exceptional. You're welcome to check my math and statistics, but I think they're pretty close--certianly within horseshoe and hand grenade rules.

    That also tells me that your theory (paraphrasing) "if you have the power you're going to use it more often" is completely bogus, and that Americans are actually quite habitually GOOD and responsible people; because while they COULD go on a bloody and murderous rampage (they have the tools after all), THEY DO NOT. When you consider that the bulk of those 18000 firearms related deaths were committed by a small minority (mostly by inner city gangs and such), you know, I think the law abiding American gun owner deserves a Gold Star.

    While we're on the topic of guns and cars, it should be noted that a 4000lb car is a much better weapon with which to mow dozens of people down, than any firearm citizens are able to own.

"A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices." -- William James

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