Getting organized... and informed

Opinion: Ken Trainor

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By Ken Trainor

Staff writer

The Gun Rights vs. Regulation Group — for want of a better name — met for the second time on March 7 at Dole Library, and participants got into a heated discussion. Not about guns but about organizational issues. So far, we're challenged on that front. Not surprising, I suppose. We're amateurs, trying to find our way.

Dave Schweig, who launched this endeavor, said he thinks we're informationally challenged, too, and he challenged us to get more informed. So I pulled together some of my homework in preparation for tomorrow night's meeting (March 28, 7 p.m., Dole). Here's a small portion of what I've learned, presented in — what else? — bullet points:

Did you know:

  • In the 2008 Supreme Court decision, District of Columbia v. Heller, which led to overturning the D.C. handgun ban, which led to overturning the Oak Park's handgun ban, the court limited its scope to firearms "in common use" for self-defense. As Jeffrey Toobin, a respected journalist who has covered the Supreme Court for many years, wrote in the New Yorker on Dec. 18, 2012 ("So You Think You Know the Second Amendment?"): "Scalia could not create an individual right to contemporary military weapons – like tanks and Stinger missiles. In light of this, [he] conjured a rule that said D.C. could not ban handguns because 'handguns are the most popular weapon chosen by Americans for self-defense in the home, and a complete prohibition of their use is invalid.' So the government cannot ban handguns, but it can ban other weapons — like, say, an assault rifle — or so it appears. The full meaning of the court's Heller opinion is still up for grabs. But it is clear that the scope of the Second Amendment will be determined as much by politics as by the law. The courts will respond to public pressure — as they did by moving to the right on gun control in the last 30 years."
  • Oak Park's 1984 handgun ban went to public referendum in 1985 and was approved by voters, 54-46 percent.
  • Our handgun ban is still "on the books." We just can't enforce it without incurring a court challenge. Like our longstanding "ban" on For Sale signs, it's essentially voluntary.
  • In addition to a handgun ban that can't be enforced, Oak Park also has an assault weapons ban that can be enforced because they aren't covered by the Supreme Court's recent gun-friendly decisions.
  • About 10 years ago, New York Mayor Bloomberg told a congressional committee, "About 1 percent of all gun dealers account for almost 60 percent of all crime guns nationwide." (Source: an op-ed piece in the New York Daily News)
  • Columbine High School in Colorado had an armed guard on duty when 12 students and one teacher were murdered in 1999. (Source: a Politico column by Roger Simon, Jan. 16)
  • 40 percent of gun purchases take place either through private transactions or at gun shows where no background check is required. (Source: a Washington Post column by Eugene Robinson, published Jan. 17)
  • Most gun shows do not allow loaded guns, writes Roger Simon in the aforementioned Politico column. Why? As one show put it on their website, "Your personal safety is our number one priority while you are at the show." Yet, as Simon points out, the NRA wants loaded guns in our schools to make them safer.
  • According to the "Harper's Index" (which lists the source of all its statistics) in the April edition of Harper's Magazine, at least five people were accidentally shot at gun shows on "Gun Appreciation Day" this past January.
  • Roughly 30,000 Americans die each year from gunshots. (Numerous sources, including Robinson's aforementioned Washington Post column) 58,000+ Americans died in the entire Vietnam War.
  • 2/3 of American gun deaths in 2011 were suicides. (Source: Harper's Index, April)
  • 680 U.S. children under the age of 13 were killed by firearms between 2006 and 2011. (Source: Harper's Index, March)
  • Projected year by which annual firearm fatalities will surpass motor-vehicle fatalities in the United States: 2015. (Source: Harper's Index, March)
  • The NRA spent 10 times more than all gun-control activist groups combined on lobbying in 2012. (Source: Harper's Index, April)
  • The NRA's Victory Fund spent $11,159,493 on the 2012 election, of which 44/100ths of 1 percent went to winning candidates. (Source: Harper's Index, March)
  • According to a Boston Children's Hospital study, released March 6, those states with the most firearm legislation had a 42 percent lower overall firearm-associated mortality rate than states with the least legislation. The firearm-associated homicide rate was 40 percent lower, and the firearm-related suicide rate was 37 percent lower in states with the most legislation. (Any number of media sources, including Yahoo)

We have a long way to go — in this country and in our group. Tomorrow night, the gun rights members of our group will have the opportunity to present their side of the issue while the gun regulation members listen and ask clarifying questions only. The goal is to show respect. At the following meeting, the gun regulation side will be presented with the same ground rules.

If we survive those sessions, we'll begin the challenging task of seeing if we can develop a gun regulation ordinance that both sides can live with.

Failing that, I suppose, we'll settle for two different ordinances that hopefully will have some overlap.

Genuine dialogue will be required.

Wish us luck.


Reader Comments

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Uncommon Sense  

Posted: April 2nd, 2013 10:46 AM

He always has great articles. Youtube his videos, particularly some of the ones from the 70s and early 80s.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: April 2nd, 2013 9:58 AM

@ Uncommon and Jim C - FYI Dr Sowell just wrote a column : Plain speak common Sense.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: April 1st, 2013 11:17 AM

@ Uncommon - did you catch Ken's 'auto fatalities vs gun death' example? You would gather from his commentary that gun deaths were expanding to overtake auto fatalities. The truth is that auto deaths have dropped faster than gun deaths and will soon be smaller numbers. Good for both , but, bad if you want to distort the facts to prove a point. I guess the fact that Ken gave his sources makes everything valid. Most of his examples cannot get by fact who are anything but friendly to our side of the argument.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: April 1st, 2013 10:58 AM

@ Uncommon - they also fail to report that all of the horrific mass murders since the 60's have happened in "Gun Free Zones" and by people who should be institutionalized for their own safety and ours.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: April 1st, 2013 10:28 AM

Ray, I'm familiar Charles Murray's works/controversy, but I haven't read them enough to have an informed opinion on him though. Another tidbit about guns though is that gun homicides have actually declined every year since 2007. Down about 15% from '07 - 11 according to FBI's data. But of course, the media would have you believe otherwise with their incessant reporting. Why let facts get in the way of good argument?

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 30th, 2013 10:08 PM

@ Jim C - Here is a link to the whole review It looks like we might both be right (Correct - not to confuse your position as right wing )---ever!

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 30th, 2013 9:59 PM

@ Jim C - Here is a reporting of TS review "Thomas Sowell, an economist, scholar and black right-wing thinker, says that Herrnstein and Murray's "The Bell Curve" (1994) was an honest, fair-minded and well-written book, one that was far more level-headed than many who disagreed with it. It is certainly nowhere near as extreme as many made it seem. It has its faults, but it raises important questions and needs to be taken seriously." I never felt that the book did anything but present a honest opinion of our social problems. Dr Sowell is a conservative and I don't feel that "Right Wing" is fair to him or to the body of his work.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 30th, 2013 9:40 PM

Tread lightly, Ray. I recall you cited Thomas Sowell on occasion and should be aware that he disputes the findings detailed in The Bell Curve.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 6:19 PM

@ Uncommon - did you ever read "The Bell Curve" The book came out over 20 years ago and was so racially charged that it died a quiet death. The premise was that the brightest of our citizens were developing careers and not having children till later. On the other hand the least intelligent were producing litters of out of wedlock kids who inherited their parents lower IQ. The authors calculated a factor for inherited intelligence, but, that factor kept popping up as the recurring constant in every evaluation. The whole book was superbly footnoted and documented. It drew a couple of conclusions that made the inner city minorities look bad so it got blasted by Jessie Jackson and his gang of thugs. I am going to see if I can find my copy and read it again.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 6:18 PM

There are a number interesting reports about lead poisoning and anti-social behavior. Tests conducted on prisoners have revealed dangerous high levels.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 5:41 PM

Dylan, while there is a high correlation between poverty and crime, but being poor does not cause crime. The real issue is the "baby mama culture" that developed after LBJ's war on poverty encouraged it and cultural dysfunction that it has created that makes people think using violence to solve disagreements is acceptable. Combine lack of real fathers, poor education, and then an economy that punishes you hard for being a low skilled screw up, you get the volatile situation we have now.

Dylan Bellisle from Forest Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 3:40 PM

Uncommon, Again. We could also look at the disparities in terms of poverty. Blacks and Hispanics are disproportionately poor - 27% and 26% respectively, compared to whites - 9%. So instead of talking about race, why aren't we talking about poverty? If we find violence disproportionately in low-income neighborhoods, and Blacks and Hispanics disproportionately live in said low-income neighborhoods, then wouldn't that translate to Blacks and Hispanics disproportionately being affected by violence both as offenders and victims because of their location in said neighborhoods? Just a little antidote as I was doing some research. Check out some stats in Arkansas. Blacks commit over twice as much Murder offenses as White, but on the flip side White Commit Twice as many Rape Offenses, over 4 times as much forcible sodomy, over three times as much Forcible Fondling. Are we to deduce that White people have sexual perversion and aggression issues? Also, not to mention White commit almost twice as many Aggravated Assault, Simple Assaults, and Intimidation offenses. Again. My theory is that someones RACE has little to do with a crime they will commit. its other circumstances, like location, neighborhood, resources, education, and the interconnection of all those things...

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 3:18 PM

@ Dylan - What you have stated is exactly the point we are making. You are not willing to look at the statistical evidence and come to a conclusion for fear of being called a racist ( as you have just done to me ) I don't like the situation as it is but sweeping the core issues under a rug only makes the problem worse. Uncommon Sense is showing uncommon sense by taking facts and trying to see a solution without varnishing the truth. A few more voices like his would be a big help in solving this societal problem. The solutions will have to come out of the black/minority community and a stable family environment is established.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 2:25 PM

Dylan, The Chicago PD data is replicated in nearly every major city. You can deny it all you want, but that doesn't change the reality. Whites are vastly underrepresented relative to their overall population in the murder rate whiles blacks/Hispanics are vastly over represented. Nationwide blacks account for more than half of murder victims while being just 13% of the population. This is a travesty and brings tears to my eyes as black man.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 1:30 PM

Auto deaths and firearms deaths. The graph is correct but your conclusions are wrong. The slope of the firearms deaths is relatively flat while auto deaths are decidedly downward. If you described the data as "Improved auto safety equipment, roads etc have reduced deaths to nearly that of violence deaths." you would be presenting a more factual story. I guess that isn't the impression you desired.

Dylan Bellisle from Forest Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 1:27 PM

Ray, The issue comes in when you make assumptions that someones race attributes to his/her likelihood of committing violence. I don't know of ANY study that argues that someones Race makes them more or less violence. What I do know is that there are studies that show that things like income, education, and location attribute to likelihood of violence, or being a victim of violence. Its about living in low-income neighborhoods, with inadequate resources and sub-par education that predicts violence. Not someone's race. So when you state that "its a hispanic/black" problem then yes that is laced with a racist idea. For example, when we had influx of poor immigrants from say... Ireland, guess who were disproportionately committing crimes? SURPRISE! The Irish! Because they were poor, segregated to low-income neighborhoods, had sub-par education, etc. Irish were able to integrate into society more quickly though. They have more recently were able to vote, hold public office, get access to loans for businesses, homes etc. than other minority groups. Blatant institutional discrimination of African-Americans didn't subside until the 70's. And levels of discrimination continue.

Dylan Bellisle from Forest Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 1:15 PM

Uncommon, Um. That just one city.I am talking about National Murder statistics. I don't challenge the fact that in Chicago, and many urban cities it is ethnic minorities who are struggling with violence in their communities, because the fact is that the violence is very much isolated in particular neighborhoods. Since we have an extreme segregated city of Chicago, then this is what we will see. What you are omitting from this, and what I am talking about, is the national statistics. National statistics that include smaller cities, and rural areas where more White people. That isn't "liberal BS" that is being inclusive of the national statistics. So I wish you would drop YOUR BS of insult if you want to have a civil and productive conversation. I don't call your comments "Conservative BS" so yes, drop it. And again, you are talking past me, you are engaging in a strawman argument. You automatically assume that because I challenge your statement I advocate for the banning of guns. Ask questions before you assume Uncommon. The fact remains that at the NATIONAL LEVEL White account for 32% of murder offenses. That is not "splicing" anything. That is doing EXACTLY as you asked, looking at the FBI.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 1:06 PM

Lastly, how is ANYTHING that Oak Park is going to do in regards to gun legislation going to stop gun violence? Are people straw buying guns in Oak Park? No. Are gangs shooting each other on Lake Street? No. Is firearm theft in OP a huge issue? No. I get the desire to want to fix the problem and do something, but you can't fix it if you aren't honest about the situation.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 12:50 PM

So in light of the clear facts, how does passing laws to ban AR-15s and 30 round magazines bought by Bubba at Cabela's going to prevent the vast majority of gun homicides/violence which are mostly black and hispanic gangs/thugs killing each other with hand guns (remember, only 350 deaths NATIONWIDE are committed with rifles of ANY KIND according to FBI).

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 12:45 PM

Further, of the victims killed, 77% had a prior arrest record. In other words, thugs killing thugs. Moreover, at least 44% involved gang affiliation, narcotics, armed robbery. 71% of victimes are 17-35 years old. So lets be honest and put this fantasy land liberal BS to rest.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 12:40 PM

Dylan, I did the homework for you. here are the official Chicago PD stats for 2011: A few key ones. 433 Murders in 2011. 75% Black, 18.9% Hispanic. 94%! (page 37). Less than 20 white folks killed out of 433 murders in Chicago. This can be extrapolated to pretty much any major urban city. So yeah, daily violence is a Black/Hispanic problem.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 12:24 PM

The Juan Williams column can be read here One sharp man with the guts to look at the facts!

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 12:20 PM

@ Dylan - our comments were in reference to the Juan Williams commentary in the Wall Street Journal and the position he took about black on black crime. If 13% of our population is responsible for half of the violent deaths we need to look at the problem without PC filtering to avoid charges of racism. It is what it is and drugs and crime in a dysfunctional community that resolves problems by killing one another is a problem. If you want to define the problems in the other 87% of the population, fine! Just don't deflect the conversation by changing the subject.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 12:01 PM

Dylan, try the CDC? FBI? Your local police department? Google is your friend. There are all kinds of variations on the stats, but no matter how you splice them, daily gun violence is overwhelmingly a black/hispanic issue. Just open your eyes. Look up Juan Williams column in WSJ day before yesterday. More than 50% of homicide victims are black. We are only 12-13% of population. Gun violence leading cause of death of young blacks.


Posted: March 29th, 2013 11:39 AM

Uncommon sense, Where is your source of evidence that "daily gun violence is almost entirely a poor black/hispanic problem." According to the FBI stats on murder, White offenders account for 32% of offensives, Black offenders account for 38%. Interestingly, white-on-white murder accounts for 83% of all white murders. But no one talks about "white-on-white" crime. provide a source please uncommon.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 11:23 AM

I saw that piece he wrote in the Wall Street Journal. I was glad to see someone on the left finally admit and shine light on the issue and how it relates to gun control. Anytime someone on the right brings up the same facts, they get branded as a racist. Leftist policies have destroyed the black community.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 10:33 AM

@ Uncommon - I saw Juan Williams (Black liberal author) claim that the majority of gun related deaths were in the black community by kids killing other kids. He said that this is a societal issue where the black community must re establish a strong family unit and get drugs out of their lives. There is one liberal I take my hat off to. Dr Carson (Black conservative surgeon) is trying to make the same case. Why can't we hear these two men rather than Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton?

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 9:56 AM

Banning guns and more gun control only addresses the symptoms, not the causes. The inner city violence is driven by the break down of the family and cultural issues. Mass shootings/killings have been around as long as there have been nut jobs. However, they still are extremely rare despite the incessant media coverage.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 9:50 AM

NRA victory fund - If your math is any where near accurate you are claiming that the NRA contributed less than $50,000 total to all of the candidates, they endorsed who won? Do a little 'fact checking' before you make statements that can be run up on a simple calculator.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 9:47 AM

If the goal is stop another Newton, then the focus needs to be on mental health as that is the issue and the common denominator that all were using pyschotic drugs (which really should be the focus). However, this is an entirely different issue than stopping the larger and more pressing issue of gang/thug violence in minority communities.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 9:41 AM

The reality is that the likelihood of being gunned down are RARE for the average person. Daily gun violence is almost entirely a poor black/hispanic problem. When you drill down even further, you find even the vast majority of those deaths involve thugs killing other thugs. So again, how are more laws that are primarily going to affect white suburban and rural males going to stop inner city gun violence? You know the answer, it won't.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 9:23 AM

@ Franklin - here is the study The number is "firearms fatalities per 100,000 population" I believe the number was adjusted to remove suicide and justifiable homicide. From what I gather you are much safer living in New York than in Utah according to this study.


Posted: March 29th, 2013 8:51 AM

Ray, Am I wrong to say that "fatalities per 100,000 residents" is the "rate of murder". its a better tool of measurement and comparison because if you have a larger population you are bound to have more of ANY crime. Therefore a rate of crime allows for a comparison. Not sure how the murder rate, a statistic that all governments, FBI, etc. use is a tool to "skew" data to prove a point. Point is... more populous states will most likely have more murders.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 29th, 2013 8:45 AM

I looked at the Boston children's hospital study and am amused at how numbers can be skewed to prove any point you want. Their entire study was based upon a "fatalities per 100,000 residents" The states with the fewest residents scored the poorest because each incident carried as much as 10 times weight as an incident in Illinois or New York. If you calculate the actual number of deaths in each state the whole chart gets flipped over and an exact opposite conclusion might be drawn. The study also admits that it didn't consider how the laws are crafted and enforced, it assumed that all were well written and fully enforced. We know for a fact that those are just foolish assumptions. It only takes a couple of faulty assumptions to make the whole study meaningless. Perhaps Boston Children's Hospital succeeded because Ken Trainor quoted them and assumed that their conclusions were above question - Wrong again - Ken.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 28th, 2013 9:21 AM

Guilty as charged, Ray. I will follow your lead.


Posted: March 28th, 2013 8:55 AM

Joe, That may be the case, but that isn't what folks are talking about. If you have a concern about a "corrupt government" then you should also be concerned about the arms the government stock piles, and should be advocating for there to be less arms. There is little discussion of this from the "pro-gun" lobby and individuals.


Posted: March 28th, 2013 8:53 AM

Voter - What have I made up my mind about? We haven't even really discussed anything. My point is that the Bill of Rights was not part of the original Constitution, and there were differing opinions about the need for it. Furthermore, as I stated there were differing drafts of all the Amendments, the 2nd included. One draft had an exemption to baring arms on religious grounds, which gives credence to the "militia theory"


Posted: March 28th, 2013 8:49 AM

Uncommon, The guns have to be obtained somehow, at some point someone either gets through through a loophole, or obtains them through a background check to sell them without background checks or even illegally. The point is outside of stealing firearms all firearms were purchased at one point or another. The point is to have background checks at all sales to diminish the likelihood of illegal possession.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 28th, 2013 7:17 AM

@ Jim - Opps I forgot all those lemmings who watch FOX as well. This lists only those folks you have insulted in the comments to this column.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: March 28th, 2013 7:12 AM

@ Jim C - I assume YOU exempt NRA members, People who defend W43 and those growing number of citizens who find fault with President Obama from your civility mandate. A touch hypocritical?

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 2:14 PM

It's more productive to engage in a civil discussion without attempting to dehumanize anyone who expresses a differing opinion. Name calling and labeling do not demonstrate a reasoned thought process.

joe from south oak park  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:31 PM

the natural rights that locke mentions are life, liberty and property. I don't think we are anywhere near this with our current government, but I do get concerned when a government wants to create a select militia instead of a militia of the people as this can only lead to abuse.

Voter from Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:30 PM

you said " Firstly, if it is so important why is it an amendment?" I read it and took it as if it's an amendment, it can't be important. Which would mean no amendments are important. I'm going back to work, your mind is made up on this situation as is mine so we will do nothing but go back and fourth. Enjoy your day.

joe from south oak park  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:28 PM

Franklin - i think the answer to your treason question comes from the oath of office and oath of enlistment. "I, (name), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic;..." notice that this mentions defending the constitution and not the government. John Locke was a strong influence on the founding fathers and his belief that people have a right to abolish a government that does not protect rights.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:20 PM

Franklin, how does a background check actually prevent gun crime when the vast majority is committed with illegally obtained guns? I highly doubt our neighbors over in Austin are going to the wal-mart on the West Side to by their firearms.


Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:18 PM

Uncommon, See why do you have to dilute a conversation into insults? I don't care what Feinstein says. I could come back and say "Why don't you tell your big mouth gun-nuts to stop blocking any reasonable legislation." But I don't, because its not useful to the conversation, of which it seems you are not interested in having. Confiscation of all firearms is neither legal nor feasible. So can "Your side" stop talking about it, wtih the fear mongering.


Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:15 PM

Voter - LMAO! So you make comments about an "Intelligent conversation" but then you mince my words? I NEVER stated that ANY of the Amendments were unimportant, whose trying to dumb down the conversation now. My statement was that if it was SUCH AN IMPORTANT piece that they feared so greatly a "corrupt government" why didn't they include it in the Constitution? You do realize that there were founders who didn't believe in the need of the "Bill of Rights" right?


Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:12 PM

Voter, How does requiring a background check at all sales make it harder for you to protect yourself and enjoy sport shooting? You already have to go through a background check and have a FOID to buy it through a dealer, so how does that requirement make it so hard for you to protect yourself if its expanded to private sales?

Voter from Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:12 PM

Franklin, The amendments to the constitution aren't important? Wow. Are you a politician?

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:10 PM

Franklin, well tell your big mouth liberal leaders to stop putting up bills and making comments that say the opposite. Feinstein, Cuomo, and others are all on record stating their true intentions. You guys say one thing but then do something else. Oh, We just want universal background check, but then the bills get loaded with all kinds of registration and other slow creep to confiscation loopholes.


Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:09 PM

Voter, That is what is called a loophole. Yes there are laws about sales across state lines, but it continues that there is no background check needed. If there was a FOID and background check required it would make it a bit more difficult for individuals to sell illegally, because they wouldn't even be allowed in the venue (Gun show) without abidding by the rules and laws.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:07 PM

I have heard the NRA argument stating that there are no gun show loopholes and also the position of law enforcement and ATF officials who express concern that private sellers at these events are not required to perform backgound checks or even request that the buyer present valid identification. If guns shows are one of the main sources for purchases made by criminals; that needs to be addressed. Regarding existing laws, there needs to be more oversight and enforcement of licensed sellers and an end to straw purchases. Criminals and dangerous individuals have a variety of ways to arm themselves but we should make it much more difficult for them while protecting the 2nd amendment rights for law abiding citizens.

Voter from Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:06 PM

and while we are at it, let's drop the guns kill too many people argument. It isn't the gun doing the killing, it's the mentally ill or deranged individuals. Here I thought you wanted to have an intelligent conversation but you assume I think the government is coming for my guns. I doubt it. I am more concerned with them limiting my ability to protect myself and making a sport I enjoy more difficult to participate in.


Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:06 PM

Uncommon, When did I say anything about hunting or sport shooting? I would encourage YOU to read the Constitution, documents leading to its ratification, and the differing thoughts at the time. Also, please do not assume. I never said you don't have a right to a firearm. I said that the Second Amendment has nothing to do with overthrowing the Government. Did you know ONE reason for the protection was to protect the Slave Patrols, and therefore enforce slavery?

Voter from Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:04 PM

Franklin, Yes, in Indiana you don't need a FOID card. There are already laws restricting the sales of firearms across state lines. Me being an Illinois resident cannot buy a firearm in Indiana from a private seller without going through an FFL. I can buy a long gun from a licensed dealer in Indiana, but need to follow Illinois laws (waiting period etc.). Enforce the laws on the books and stop adding new restrictions. They do nothing but punish the law abiding citizens.


Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:03 PM

Voter, Have you ever read the history of how the Second Amendment came into being? Firstly, if it is so important why is it an amendment? Secondly, there were many drafts at the time, one draft stated "country" instead of "state." Organizing to overthrown the government through arms is treason. How can the Constitution protect Treason, AND made it illegal?


Posted: March 27th, 2013 1:00 PM

Voter Actually if you are a prviate seller in Indiana you can sell firearms without a backgrounhd check both within a private environment AND at a gun-show. There are definitely many things the government, and businesses, can do to prevent the trafficking of firearms. That I what I am talking about, any what many of us are talking about. So lets drop the "You are coming for my guns, and stripping me of my rights." argument because thats simply not the case.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 12:59 PM

Franklin, read the constitution. It doesn't say a damn thing about hunting or sport shooting. Just like the first amendment is about allowing people to dissent. I think it is pretty clear what the founders meant and intended and what they feared. A goverment growing too powerful.


Posted: March 27th, 2013 12:55 PM

Uncommon, Yes, people and children have died in other circumstances. The difference is that there isn't a National Pool Association that lobbies to prevent ANY commonsense regulation. CCRyder, The Second Amendment has nothing to do with recognizing "that the biggest threat to our freedom was a corrupt government." Provide reference for such a statement.


Posted: March 27th, 2013 12:52 PM

Voter - One of the issues in terms of the old research is that the NRA has lobbied to make it very difficult to conduct research on guns, and gun violence. I admit its an old stat, but we don't have another. So until the NRA blesses us with the opportunity to study that, we are forced to continue to use it. Actually, studies have shown that possession of a gun increases the likelihood of suicide completion for individual who are suicidal. You MAY not die if you overdose.

Voter from Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 12:38 PM

Jim C., What laws are going to make it more difficult for a criminal to obtain a firearm? Knowing what I have won't. Requiring me to get more training won't. Reducing the number of rounds my magazines hold won't. There is no gun show loop hole. If you buy at a gun show, you go through the same steps as a gun shop. The FOID card (makes us pay for our right) requires a background check done by the state police and by law, you need to see it before you sell privately. bad guys dont have FOID

Voter from Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 12:34 PM

MichaelO, "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." Necessary to the security of a free from who or what? Free from a dictator? Free from a king? Free from a tyrannic government? Free from 32 ounce sugary sodas?

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 12:25 PM

Is not the issue before us responsible gun ownership? How does trying to make it more difficult for criminals and dangerous individuals to obtain weapons infringe on the rights of law abiding citizens? At the very least, requiring licensing and registration, closing loopholes and enforcing existing laws will certainly make the cost of illegally obtaining a gun and ammo prohibitive for many of the people we are seeking to block from possessing weapons.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 12:08 PM

Michael, I didn't realize our constitution granted the right for millions of law abiding citizens to own land minds. Good grief, talk about false equilvalency. Look, if you don't want to own a gun, don't buy one. However, don't infringe on the rights of others who want to exercise their right to do so.

MichaelO from Oak Park  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 11:31 AM

Uncommon Sense, 32 kids worldwide stubbed their toes on land mines. What!? You want to get rid of land mines now. Sheesh. Your false equivalency arguments are tiresome and misleading. Wish you could see that. And CCRyder, can you direct us to the part in the bill of rights where guns are to protect us from a corrupt government? Do you have a gun? Is it to you we owe our freedom?

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 11:23 AM

CCRyder, regarding your expressed concerns about government corruption, please provide some evidence to support "a fact being confirmed more than ever before in these last few years". I take you are not talking about the lies that led to the illegal invasion of Iraq and resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands, serious injuries to countless others, war profiterring and the waste of more than a trillion dollars. Try not to simply parrot the drivel you hear from Fox News and offer some specifics based upon a reputable or independent study.


Posted: March 27th, 2013 10:08 AM

"Most gun shows do not allow loaded guns" ALL gunshows prohibit loaded guns. Under this guy's reasoning police officer's guns should be unloaded. Bottom line is that letting government control guns is letting the fox guard the henhouse. Lest we forget the 2nd Amendment was added to the constitution because it was recognized that the biggest threat to our freedom was a corrupt government. A fact being confirmed more than ever before in these last few years.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 9:27 AM

Kids were shot with an armed guard on duty at Columbine, therefore, armed guards make no sense. Did you really just make this argument? Seriously? So let's see, bank gets robbed even though armed guard was on duty, therefore, banks don't need armed guards. Reagan shot while surrounded by secret service, therefore, Presidents don't need secret service. How can we possibly have dialogue if this is the kind of thinking we need to convince...

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 9:21 AM

Over the same period you cite, about twice as many kids died from drowning. I guess that means we should ban swimming pools and boats right? See CDC. After all, it is about saving kids lives... FBI says less than 350 homicides are committed by a RIFLE OF ANY KIND. Much less those evil looking black AR-15s. Twice as many are beat to death. Five times as many stabbed to death. So again, why the focus on "assault weapons" which is already been proven to be a false meme?

voter from illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 8:14 AM

2/3 of American gun deaths in 2011 were suicides. - if you plan to end your own life, you will find another way. those states with the most firearm legislation had a 42 percent lower overall firearm- Where does Illinois fall in this? How about Chicago alone?

voter from Illinois  

Posted: March 27th, 2013 7:55 AM

40 percent of gun purchases take place either through private ... This is based off of a study from 1994 that surveyed 251 people. Columbine High School in Colorado had an armed guard on duty - and also occurred during the clinton gun ban. Most gun shows do not allow loaded guns -to prevent accidents when someone is carrying a gun they intend to sell, and they don't realize it is loaded. Roughly 30,000 Americans die each year from gunshots.- and 2/3s of them are suicides.

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