President Obama issued 23 executive actions on gun control today, including provisions encouraging research into the causes and prevention of gun violence. He also challenged the private sector to develop innovations in gun safety.
One order calls for the issue of "a presidential memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence." Federally funded science agencies have been prohibited from using their funds to "advocate or promote gun control," something critics say has stymied research into the causes of gun violence. "Public health research on gun violence is not advocacy," the White House plan clarifies.
Obama is additionally asking Congress to provide the CDC $10 million to conduct research into the relationship between video games, violence and media images.
The president also wants to encourage the creation of new gun violence-combating technologies and called on the attorney general to "issue a report on the availability and most effective use of new gun safety technologies and challenge the private sector to develop innovative technologies." As part of a national responsible ownership campaign, the White House wants to encourage the development of technology improving safe use and storage of guns. The plan also directs the Consumer Product Safety Commission to assess the adequacy of current safety standards for gun locks and safes.
"We don't benefit from ignorance," Obama said. "We don't benefit from not knowing the science of this epidemic of violence."
Thats the last straw, How can a man who stands at all times surrounded by men armed with automatic weapons say that we will be safer if we take away guns from the honest people who would buy them legally. All these laws do is make it more difficult for hunters, and sportsmen to do what they love, and leave people undefended in the wake of a shooting.
I am a STRONG supporter of the 2nd, and I think that the President's desire to reinstate the 1994 AWB is foolish, pointless, and likely unconstitutional.
The executive orders today, however, were generally tame and within the power of the office (asking people nicely to do things, writing letters to people asking them to do things, and directing small quantities of discreationary money).
Gun research was never off limits, just advocating policy. (Gun safety was still green lighted by Congress as an aceptable use of funds). This was after an embarrassingly slanted "study" was put out by a (now former) CDC empoyee. The CDC has avoided such studies not because they are prohibited, but because they want to maintain themselves as an organization of facts, data, and hard science - not editorials and publication squables like much of the academic community has.
That said, I laughed loudly at order #18, which is about adding funding for schools to have SROs (armed police officers on campus), when that was the NRA's primary suggestion (ridiculed by the President at that time).
The truely outragious stuff was not in today's proclimation, but will be sent to Congress as a piece of DOA legislation.
@calebscape808: I think you misinterpreted the article and allowed your emotions on gun control (which this article isn't really about) to take over.
What we really need is a level-headed, non-emotional discussion.
Hey, I can dream can't I?
Why again does POP-Sci become a sounding board for the Democratic party and Obama? Do they foolishly think the young people come to sites like theirs? Most people come to read unbiased science research. Not this politicized !@##$!
US citizens are all crazy. Most of them are actually...
I've got to say Obama's reaction is surprisingly restrained under the circumstances (after several small children were killed by some crazy with a gun). Look at other mass shootings in recent history; after every one there's always a massive outcry for gun control.
At least he's looking for information instead of jumping straight to "we need to control guns" like all too many other people.
I'd tell you why even gun control laws being suggested now wouldn't have helped, but I'm gonna follow Obama's example and keep my biased arguments away from a rational discussion about the FACTS of gun violence.
Why is there a picture of the XM8 in the graphic - I mean I'm not complaining, but the XM8 program was scrapped.
Nice to see the L85 though.
Since when is reporting news all about the democrats. Seems the NRA all other special intrest group use the media, including this web site, to pass along information and opinions. Isn't this what you just accomplished. Hmmmm ... news is news. It affects us all and forces us to think. Did you think your statement through? LOL
The only stats I ever hear thrown around about this issue is the level of gun violence before and after gun bans.
But does that rationally make sense? I mean, should we look at over all violence before and after?
If criminals just end up changing their murder weapon am I any safer?
If I am not any safer....why are we wasting time and money disarming the average joe?
lack of honor, lack of integrity. these are the things that cause gun violence, or violence in general...
to mars or bust!
Thank goodness for 2 term limits, lol!
Could you please explain me why drones in Iraq and Afghanistan attacked everyone who had a beard and a gun? Or arrested people when they found a gun in their house? Why is it that they were threats to the troops and why is it that the NRA never protected these people? Don't get me wrong. I think only authorities should have guns as much as I many times don't trust them in Europe. I don't consider Americans more criminal and bigger murderers, but is a combination of anger and easy access to guns. It is also like flamemail. It use to be that you had to pick a piece of paper and pen and write your letter and afterwards had to look for a stamp and afterwards post it in a mailbox. Many people would already think twice before they mailed their angry letter. Now these people type in their thoughts and press on a button and it's published. I hate to see when it even comes to the stage that the same people can just shoot a gun when they get angry, because it would be more easy. You don't have many more bad people then in other countries but your murderrate is much higher. It's your easy access to the guns which makes it much more easy.
And your presidents children are more protected because they are a bigger target to terrorists and lunatics then the children of any other American.
You should have more faith in your own society then to think that you need semi automatic weapons with clips with more then 10 bullets or sniperrifels with a range of 2 miles to protect your familly.
It is one thing when they have to take your gun from your corps. It will become alot tougher when you have to take your gun from your little kid when he shot himself playing with it. But perhaps your children will be the ones who never defy any rules and will always obey the rules and would always listen to you? I'm sure you will be proud that they are so unique.
Perhaps you should also reinstate many laws how they were when your constitution was made? I'm sure your wife would disagree when she would not be able to vote anymore.
Laws evolve over time. In the days your constitution was made, people were obeying the laws much more. I'm sure you have much more rights then when you lived at the time when your constitution was made. Nowdays we have to do obey our elite much less. Laws evolved in many countries and your freedom would be more protected by a good free press and media then by guns. I would like to see the people in the US would try better gun control for at least 8 years and see if the murderrate declined. I'm pretty sure that if we had such easy access in Europe we already would have wiped ourselves out.
You need to add another reason to your list of "Causes of violence in general"...
people being made personally responsible for their disrespectful behavior to others.
I'm fine with research because it's been done before and I am confident it will prove the opposite of what people who blame guns, games, movies, etc. expect. It will actually support legal gun-owners by cleaning out all the nonsensical bs rhetoric I keep hearing.
People in the US need to accept that it's not the materials that are the problem, it's the people. It's how everyone here treats each other. We are not a unified nation that helps each other. We are divided on every issue, including this one, and the media likes it that way because it funds their profits.
This...isn't a political article guys. Perhaps the only political thing about it is that PopSci hasn't posted an article about speeches the NRA have made, but in my opinion that's fine because Presidential news is far more noteworthy than NRA news. The NRA, btw, that is quickly showing its colors as an extreme organization, who's opinions are sliding away from most of the more level headed members of its organization.
If the President calls for more scientific studies to shed insight on the real causes of gun violence, instead of merely relying on conjecture and opinion, then I believe it belongs in a scientific magazine like PopSci...no?
I happen to know that most people I meet are irresponsible kooks and I for one feel much better knowing that none of the thousands of depressed, sexually frustrated, existentially lost individuals in my state don't have a gun to shoot me with if they decide that they are having a bad enough day to do so. But I would like to see some science that proves I am safer if they don't have a gun than if they did, just to shut people up.
Crazy people with guns are bad.
Guns are tools that need to be managed.
The currently management of gun laws is just fine.
But management of whom and how people acquire guns would be better.
I'm sure those thousands of people are equally relieved that you are not in a position to make such a decision as to their suitability to own a firearm.
Statements like that are, in all honesty, why some people oppose increased mental health screening and other requirements during background checks for firearms purchases; they fear a biased decision authorities who may base decisions on an individuals suitability on a less than objective basis.
(I am not one of those people, generally speaking)
I don't necessarily blame them though, regardless of whether or not I agree with them.
There are certain lifestyles, political dispositions, and values that aren't inherently dangerous, but are often labeled as crazy by people who do not share those values.
Would we expect them to buy into a plan that places an unspecified body over their ability to exercise what they view as a right, as you call them crazy for being a devout christian, or a preper, or a tea-party member? What about the occupy crowd (though desire for gun ownership with that demographic is lower, the point remains).
This kind of rhetoric does nothing to work towards solutions.
"...I happen to know that most people I meet are irresponsible kooks..." yea know....
..when you consider all the people around you kooks and you’re the only normal one, perhaps the kook might be you, lol.
It’s time to have your medication increase, sir. ;)
Stop hiding behind the constitution because you don't properly understand it. This is NOT a second amendment issue. The only way it would be is if the president proposed to ban the possession of ALL guns, which is silly, of course. The 2nd amendment doesn't dictate how many guns you can own, or what type, or how much ammo you can have, because it wasn't an issue in the 18th century. But now these are serious issues that need to be addressed. Should you really be able to own enough weapons and ammo to kill hundreds of people? Should I really be asked to take you at your word that you would never use them to commit a crime? The answer to both questions is an obvious NO.
In the event that the federal government uses the military against its own people (which is...unlikely), the purpose of the second amendment is to allow the people to maintain a militia with which to overthrow the federal government (which is impossible). It does not protect your right to own military grade, high caliber, high capacity assault rifles, nor does it protect the rights of private corporations to manufacture and sell them.
Just to throw some stats at you, gun owners are 5 times more likely to be shot in an assault than non gun-owners. Gun owners are more likely to be shot by their own gun or by the gun of a family member than they are to be shot by an intruder or assailant. (according to: American Journal of Public Health, Harvard and Johns Hopkins Schools of Public Health)
Guns do not make anyone safer. They only make you FEEL safer. This is a fact, brought to you by science.
I do have to note, and this is something I see often... It doesn't matter what yours or my interpretation of the 2nd amendment is. It doesn't matter what you think 'a well regulated militia' means,or what you think it protects, or if I interpret 'shall not be infringed' to mean that no limitations shall be imposed (which I don't, but for comparison's sake...).
What matters is the interpretation of the supreme court, which has ruled numerous times on the topic. That we don't agree with the interpretation doesn't change the legally held interpretation.
With that said, as it currently stands you are half correct. The current interpretation of second amendment holds that it does not prevent limitations on the type of firearms one can own; this is why automatic weapons have been mostly banned for many decades, as well as other military hardware such as explosives and larger weapon systems, which are classified as 'destructive devices' and illegal to own. On the other hand, the current interpretation does not provide for limitations on the number of firearms as you suggest. They are simply legal to own, or illegal to own.
As for your comments on civilians combating the government, I have noticed that most people who disagree with this reasoning use the logic "it wont help anyways, so we should do nothing." I find it ironic that the same people often criticize opponents of gun control for using this same logic: "gun control wont work, so we shouldn't try." That seems a bit disingenuous and hypocritical.
**Take the rest of this comment with more a grain of salt. I find this part of the discussion to be a futile and ill-informed war game exercise from civilian arm-chair generals... but I'll bite anyhow**
More importantly, though I see it as unlikely as you do that it would ever come to such a condition in America (or at least tell myself that), I disagree that it would be as futile as you suggest. Keep in mind that there is, in any civil war, defection from the established military which provides the opposition arms that it currently would not have. The tired argument that the assault rifle will do nothing against a tank or aircraft is immaterial; there aren't a sufficient number of tanks or aircraft to combat the millions of firearms owners in America, nor to protect the stockpiled assets that would allow the American public to effectively combat these more advanced weapon systems. Also, in contrast to many national rebellions we have seen in the past year, our soldiers pledge an oath to the constitution rather than their government or leaders, which theoretically would oblige at least some sizable number to disobey orders to harm citizens, and perhaps assist them.
Honestly, far more poorly armed populaces than the American public have been successful in deposing their governments in recent years. Indeed, our 'victories' in Afghanistan and Iraq attest to the ability of sufficiently passionate individuals to cause even the most effective world military considerable damage and difficulty.
It is estimated that there were less than 50,000 combatants in Afghanistan... Estimates place upwards of 80 Million gun owners in America.
By comparison, the total manpower of the united states military is less than 1.5 million.
"Guns do not make anyone safer. They only make you FEEL safer. This is a fact, brought to you by science."
I guess that 71-year-old Samuel Williams feels pretty safe with his .380. Link and excerpt from the article below. There is also a surveillance camera Video of the incident on the link
"On Friday, July 13, 71-year-old Samuel Williams was at the Palms Internet Café in Marion County, Fla., with his wife. Williams, a concealed carry permit holder, was armed with a .380 pistol.
When two 19-year-old masked robbers entered the business brandishing a pistol and a baseball bat, and carrying a large bag, Williams must have known that his decision to draw his pistol and engage the armed robbers would be potentially life-changing.
Video surveillance footage shows one suspect, later identified as Dwayne Henderson, pointing a pistol at customers and directing them. His less-armed partner in crime, Davis Dawkins, could be seen raising his baseball bat and striking downward on what was later determined to be a computer.
Williams displayed patience as he waited for an opportune moment to act. When Henderson turned his back to him, Williams sprang into action. Just as Williams started toward Henderson with the gun trained on him, Henderson wheeled around and saw Williams, who fired at Henderson sprinting for the front door. It appeared that the two armed criminals could not get out of that café fast enough, as they each fell to the floor at one point. It’s not clear from the video footage whether Henderson fired the pistol during the attempted robbery."
@Salt "Just to throw some stats at you, gun owners are 5 times more likely to be shot in an assault than non gun-owners."
The study to which you refer was conducted by The University of Pennsylvania. It only included residents of Philadelphia, the fifth largest city in the US. It is a study on inner city violence and does not apply to the vast majority of the population of the US.
Here is a direct quote from the study:
"It is also worth noting that our findings are possibly not generalizable to nonurban areas whose gun injury risks can be significantly different than those of urban centers like Philadelphia."
So if you are driving around the bad part of a major US city, this study applies to you. Otherwise it is irreverent.
I've heard similar stories of course and I'm sure there are more we could cite, but the statistically average outcome of that situation is not in Mr. William's favor, nor that of the innocent bystanders. It's the exception, not the rule.
To frame it differently, Williams needlessly endangered his life, and the lives of everyone in the cafe, in an attempt to murder some misguided teenager who was stupidly trying to knock over an internet cafe for a few hundred bucks. Anyone in that place could have been shot in a firefight that HE started. And you're telling me this is an argument AGAINST stricter control? I wonder how many "heroes" there are, just like this guy? Walking around strapped, waiting for the opportunity to justifiably murder somebody and risk innocent lives by escalating a dangerous situation with armed criminals, like an idiot.
There are plenty of other similar studies with similar results in many different countries. Here are a few:
@Salt "Gun owners are more likely to be shot by their own gun or by the gun of a family member than they are to be shot by an intruder or assailant."
What a worthless statistic. It is possible, but unlikely that I will be shot by my own gun. This is a risk I seriously considered after getting married and having children. Now, according to this statistic, as unlikely it is that I will be shot by my own gun, it is even less likely that I will be shot by an intruder. Awesome, good news. Where is the down side?
And why only include being shot by an intruder? Why not include other forms of assault like beatings, rapes, stabbings, or strangulation? You arm yourself to prevent attacks, not just shootings. And why didn't they compare the likelihood of preventing an attack vs being shot by your own gun/family?
Your first link is titled "The Case For Gun Policy Reforms in America". It is neither a study nor is it even remotely unbiased.
Second link very briefly summarizes four studies but does not provide a link to those studies, so I cannot verify their validity.
Yes, that is what it's titled, and if you read the rest of the cover you will see that it is the work of 2 PhDs from the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research (guess what they do there). There are 7 pages of references citing the studies they researched. Are you going to review each of them individually, or shall we consider the possibility that the folks at the Center for Gun Policy and Research know more about the subject than either of us? Or perhaps you could produce a study which shows that increased gun availability leads to less gun violence and safer cities?
"To frame it differently, Williams needlessly endangered his life, and the lives of everyone in the cafe, in an attempt to murder some misguided teenager who was stupidly trying to knock over an internet cafe for a few hundred bucks. Anyone in that place could have been shot in a firefight that HE started. And you're telling me this is an argument AGAINST stricter control? I wonder how many "heroes" there are, just like this guy? Walking around strapped, waiting for the opportunity to justifiably murder somebody and risk innocent lives by escalating a dangerous situation with armed criminals, like an idiot."
This is interesting...you are turning the victim into the
criminal..."in an attempt to murder some misguided Teenager". I do not think that Mr Williams would have even noticed these two guys if they had not tried to rob the whole Cafe.
I have lived in unpleasant neighborhoods and met many, as you put it, “Misguided” people. Let me tell you something about the way they tick…These “Misguided” people tend not to behave in a “Misguided” manner if they think they are going to get hurt in the process.
As far as “needlessly endangered his life”…the man did not want to be a victim. If you want to be a victim that is your choice and I have seen people that just love it when they find a victim. Because they are not looking for a challenge…just a victim. They would take something off you on Monday and, if it was easy, they would be back on Tuesday.
You wonder how many “Heros” there are like this guy. In my opinion…not enough! As far as I am concerned he is a hero because he defended himself and others in, and you could have not put it better,” a dangerous situation with armed criminals”.
Yes, I am of the opinion that this is a perfect argument for allowing citizens to carry firearms. Especially senior citizens who can not defend themselves without a weapon against “Misguided” people.
He didn't want to be a victim of theft. There is no indication that these teens intended to kill anyone. On the contrary, they ran away instead of returning fire because, at 19, they were practically children. You talk as if ending their lives is a reasoned and proportionate response to petty theft.
That old man is crazy and he should not be permitted to carry a concealed weapon if he thinks that a crowded cafe is a reasonable place to fire it. He didn't even brandish it and attempt to diffuse the situation (as law enforcement are trained to do), he immediately opened fire and potentially instigated a shootout in a crowded building. And for what? The paper in his pocket? You will have to excuse me if I don't find his actions admirable.