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Are Guns the Problem?
Townhall.com ^ | January 16, 2013 | Walter E. Williams

Posted on 01/16/2013 3:49:27 AM PST by Kaslin

When I attended primary and secondary school -- during the 1940s and '50s -- one didn't hear of the kind of shooting mayhem that's become routine today. Why? It surely wasn't because of strict firearm laws. My replica of the 1902 Sears mail-order catalog shows 35 pages of firearm advertisements. People just sent in their money, and a firearm was shipped.

Dr. John Lott, author of "More Guns, Less Crime," reports that until the 1960s, some New York City public high schools had shooting clubs where students competed in citywide shooting contests for university scholarships. They carried their rifles to school on the subways and, upon arrival, turned them over to their homeroom teacher or the gym coach and retrieved their rifles after school for target practice. Virginia's rural areas had a long tradition of high-school students going hunting in the morning before school and sometimes storing their rifles in the trunks of their cars that were parked on school grounds. Often a youngster's 12th or 14th birthday present was a shiny new .22-caliber rifle, given to him by his father.

Today's level of civility can't match yesteryear's. Many of today's youngsters begin the school day passing through metal detectors. Guards patrol school hallways, and police cars patrol outside. Despite these measures, assaults, knifings and shootings occur. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2010 there were 828,000 nonfatal criminal incidents in schools. There were 470,000 thefts and 359,000 violent attacks, of which 91,400 were serious. In the same year, 145,100 public-school teachers were physically attacked, and 276,700 were threatened.

What explains today's behavior versus yesteryear's? For well over a half-century, the nation's liberals and progressives -- along with the education establishment, pseudo-intellectuals and the courts -- have waged war on traditions, customs and moral values. These people taught their vision, that there are no moral absolutes, to our young people. To them, what's moral or immoral is a matter of convenience, personal opinion or a consensus.

During the '50s and '60s, the education establishment launched its agenda to undermine lessons children learned from their parents and the church with fads such as "values clarification." So-called sex education classes are simply indoctrination that sought to undermine family and church strictures against premarital sex. Lessons of abstinence were ridiculed and considered passé and replaced with lessons about condoms, birth control pills and abortions. Further undermining of parental authority came with legal and extralegal measures to assist teenage abortions with neither parental knowledge nor consent.

Customs, traditions, moral values and rules of etiquette, not laws and government regulations, are what make for a civilized society. These behavioral norms -- transmitted by example, word of mouth and religious teachings -- represent a body of wisdom distilled through ages of experience, trial and error, and looking at what works. The importance of customs, traditions and moral values as a means of regulating behavior is that people behave themselves even if nobody's watching. Police and laws can never replace these restraints on personal conduct so as to produce a civilized society. At best, the police and criminal justice system are the last desperate line of defense for a civilized society. The more uncivilized we become the more laws that are needed to regulate behavior.

Many customs, traditions and moral values have been discarded without an appreciation for the role they played in creating a civilized society, and now we're paying the price. What's worse is that instead of a return to what worked, people want to replace what worked with what sounds good, such as zero-tolerance policies in which bringing a water pistol, drawing a picture of a pistol, or pointing a finger and shouting "bang-bang" produces a school suspension or arrest. Seeing as we've decided that we should rely on gun laws to control behavior, what should be done to regulate clubs and hammers? After all, FBI crime statistics show that more people are murdered by clubs and hammers than rifles and shotguns.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: banglist; biggovernment; educationandschools; guncontrol; guns; morality; secondamendment

1 posted on 01/16/2013 3:49:43 AM PST by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

no


2 posted on 01/16/2013 3:50:42 AM PST by Doogle (USAF.68-73..8th TFW Ubon Thailand..never store a threat you should have eliminated))
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To: Kaslin

School integration overlaps the same period. There are all sorts of social implications.


3 posted on 01/16/2013 3:55:36 AM PST by muawiyah
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To: Kaslin
Rudyard Kipling described it a century ago:

AS I PASS through my incarnations in every age and race,
I make my proper prostrations to the Gods of the Market Place.
Peering through reverent fingers I watch them flourish and fall,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings, I notice, outlast them all.

We were living in trees when they met us. They showed us each in turn
That Water would certainly wet us, as Fire would certainly burn:
But we found them lacking in Uplift, Vision and Breadth of Mind,
So we left them to teach the Gorillas while we followed the March of Mankind.

We moved as the Spirit listed. They never altered their pace,
Being neither cloud nor wind-borne like the Gods of the Market Place,
But they always caught up with our progress, and presently word would come
That a tribe had been wiped off its icefield, or the lights had gone out in Rome.

With the Hopes that our World is built on they were utterly out of touch,
They denied that the Moon was Stilton; they denied she was even Dutch;
They denied that Wishes were Horses; they denied that a Pig had Wings;
So we worshipped the Gods of the Market Who promised these beautiful things.

When the Cambrian measures were forming, They promised perpetual peace.
They swore, if we gave them our weapons, that the wars of the tribes would cease.
But when we disarmed They sold us and delivered us bound to our foe,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "Stick to the Devil you know."

On the first Feminian Sandstones we were promised the Fuller Life
(Which started by loving our neighbour and ended by loving his wife)
Till our women had no more children and the men lost reason and faith,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "The Wages of Sin is Death."

In the Carboniferous Epoch we were promised abundance for all,
By robbing selected Peter to pay for collective Paul;
But, though we had plenty of money, there was nothing our money could buy,

And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "If you don't work you die."

Then the Gods of the Market tumbled, and their smooth-tongued wizards withdrew
And the hearts of the meanest were humbled and began to believe it was true
That All is not Gold that Glitters, and Two and Two make Four
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings limped up to explain it once more.

As it will be in the future, it was at the birth of Man
There are only four things certain since Social Progress began.
That the Dog returns to his Vomit and the Sow returns to her Mire,
And the burnt Fool's bandaged finger goes wabbling back to the Fire;

And that after this is accomplished, and the brave new world begins
When all men are paid for existing and no man must pay for his sins,
As surely as Water will wet us, as surely as Fire will burn,
The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return!

4 posted on 01/16/2013 4:15:44 AM PST by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
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To: Kaslin

The dude who shot the kids in CT was a scitzo.

The dude that shots rat Congresswoman Giffords was a lunatic as well.

These dangerously mentally ill people who are being allowed to walk around free seem to the “the problem”.


5 posted on 01/16/2013 4:16:25 AM PST by Impy (All in favor of Harry Reid meeting Mr. Mayhem?)
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To: Impy
>These dangerously mentally ill people who are being allowed to walk around free seem to the “the problem”.<

These dangerously mentally ill people who are being allowed to walk around free ARE the “the problem”.

Years ago we had institutions called "insane asylums". They housed people with severe mental problems.

Then along came the liberals who thought these were "just horrible" and began the process of emptying them out. "Mainstream" is what is was called.

So here we are, folks. The end result of liberals running the show.

6 posted on 01/16/2013 4:25:42 AM PST by Jerrybob (Truth -- the new hate speech.)
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To: Kaslin
When I attended primary and secondary school -- during the 1940s and '50s -- one didn't hear of the kind of shooting mayhem that's become routine today. Why?

Here's a theory my wife threw out there a few years ago. Today's kids are never allowed to fail. Everyone wins, everyone gets a trophy. So,as has happened in the recent past, a kid gets jilted by his first girlfriend. Well, he's never failed before, he doesn't know how to handle it, grabs a gun and goes nuts.

Of course this isn't always the case but it's happened enough. The point is, how can today's kids learn to overcome adversity and become better people if they're never allowed to fail?

7 posted on 01/16/2013 4:45:33 AM PST by Puppage (You may disagree with what I have to say, but I shall defend to your death my right to say it)
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To: Kaslin
Liberal tax & spend policies begun after WWII forced mothers into the workplace, leaving the raising of the children to schools, babysitters, TV, & to the children themselves.

It is the mothers & motherly love that civilize the children the most, & the fathers to enforce that love & civilization. Now, the mother works all day & there is no father. Little time is left in the day to spend with the kids. Civilizing the kids is left to paid strangers who have little stake in civilizing your kids. They are there primarily for the money & little else. There is no love from strangers to re-enforce the lessons learned.

It is my belief that if you haven't civilized your kids by age 6-7, then you have failed. At 6, the "system" takes over with it amoral attitudes that kill any sense of right & wrong. Add to that the growing influence of other kids who are just a morally ignorant.

Yet now, many new parents turn their kids over to the "system" right after birth. My own niece put her new born twins in day care so she could begin teaching in elementary school. Teaching other kids is more immediately important that spending precious time with your OWN twins?

8 posted on 01/16/2013 4:52:18 AM PST by Mister Da (The mark of a wise man is not what he knows, but what he knows he doesn't know!)
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To: Kaslin

My mother, now 95, said that children who rode their horses a long way into school sometimes brought their rifles and hunted on the way home. But I’m thinking these children were “expected” to behave as adults. Today’s society keeps children as children until 26. (That’s how long you have to keep them on your insurance. I have a friend whose adult “child” sued him for insurance coverage and won.) The ability to carry a gun goes with a self-responsible adult word view. Even adults today don’t have a self-responsible worldview. But taking away guns isn’t going to help.


9 posted on 01/16/2013 4:53:22 AM PST by Gen.Blather
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To: Jerrybob
Then along came the liberals who thought these were "just horrible" and began the process of emptying them out. "Mainstream" is what is was called.

The worst part of emptying the mental institutions and dumping their patients on the streets isn't even the occasional mass murder. It's the human tragedy of these sick people being left to fend for themselves when they are incapable of doing so. No one in their right mind (pardon the pun) could think that the homeless are better off living like rats in the street, dirty and diseased, than they would be if confined to an institution where they are looked after.

10 posted on 01/16/2013 4:57:01 AM PST by exDemMom (Now that I've finally accepted that I'm living a bad hair life, I'm more at peace with the world.)
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To: Kaslin

When I was in high school, many times I had a shotgun in the trunk of the car, or in the gun rack of my truck. Used to go hunting before class during dove and quail season in Az.

In college the shotgun was in my dorm room at all times. Used to to rabbit and bird hunt in northern Arizona.

It was just accepted and we had no problems like we do today.
I kept my guns under control and they never killed anybody.

The problem is the deterioration of morals brought about by liberal social policies and soviet/socialist/nazi indoctrination taught in our schools and the liberal political agenda.

bobo


11 posted on 01/16/2013 5:00:53 AM PST by bobo1 (the KDE plasma desktop is awesome!)
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To: muawiyah
School integration overlaps the same period

Even now..the black kids hang with the black kids and the whites and asians all have their own clicks.

There is some crossover..but very little.

12 posted on 01/16/2013 5:09:42 AM PST by Ouderkirk (Obama has turned America into an aristocracy of the unaccomplished.)
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To: Kaslin

The problem is people whose “value system” allows them to murder.
Thanks to years of liberal propaganda that there is no right and no wrong.


13 posted on 01/16/2013 5:31:00 AM PST by I want the USA back
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To: DuncanWaring

Kipling is not perfect, but you could get a pretty good doctoral level education in human nature and society by reading him.

Far, far better than the &^%$&%^$# that passes for education these days.


14 posted on 01/16/2013 5:54:26 AM PST by BwanaNdege ("To learn who rules over you simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize"- Voltaire)
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To: Kaslin

The question I ask is,” Why are we raising children that want to kill us+” When I was in High School, I used to bring my deer rifle to school to show my friends. I could keep it in my locker.


15 posted on 01/16/2013 6:00:20 AM PST by Citizen Tom Paine (An old sailor sends)
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To: Mister Da

My wife taught 4 year olds for many years. They put problem kids in her class, including the children of teachers, so that they could be taught to behave.

A child can begin to understand right and wrong as early as 6 months. They are well aware of their strong self will by then. As you said, if they are not civilized by 6 or 7 then they may end up having a very difficult time in life.

After that, “One Day Motivation” or “Motivation Platoon” at Parris Island are some of the very few things that can rectify the problem. Jail or prison seem to fail in that task.


16 posted on 01/16/2013 6:02:49 AM PST by BwanaNdege ("To learn who rules over you simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize"- Voltaire)
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To: Mister Da
It is my belief that if you haven't civilized your kids by age 6-7, then you have failed. At 6, the "system" takes over with it amoral attitudes that kill any sense of right & wrong.

It is my belief that if you let such a system take over the education of your child, you are committing child abuse and sacrificing your child to the cause of America's destruction.

We are at this point today because so many parents neglected their children and let them be warehoused by liberal institutions. Some so-called conservative parents are still doing this.

If you support the system with your tax dollars and your children's minds, you have no standing to complain.

17 posted on 01/16/2013 6:06:14 AM PST by HomeAtLast ( You're either with the Tea Party, or you're with the EBT Party.)
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To: Kaslin
Dr. John Lott, author of "More Guns, Less Crime," reports that until the 1960s, some New York City public high schools had shooting clubs where students competed in citywide shooting contests for university scholarships. They carried their rifles to school on the subways and, upon arrival, turned them over to their homeroom teacher or the gym coach and retrieved their rifles after school for target practice.

I can confirm that - my uncle was in such a club at school. He, however, didn't take the subway - he walked to school, carrying his gun the entire way. Somehow, neither he nor any of his fellow club-members shot anyone, even by accident.

We are living in a thoroughly pussified society. God help us.

18 posted on 01/16/2013 6:46:44 AM PST by Ancesthntr (Banning guns to prevent crime is like banning cars to prevent drunk driving.)
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To: Kaslin

In the fifties, my brother and I rode the school bus. On rifle club day he brought the rifle on the bus and I carried the box of fifty cartridges for the shoot ... which took place after school in the ravine behind the football field. But of course, I was living in East Tennessee then and liberalism was not yet the disease it has become.


19 posted on 01/16/2013 6:56:08 AM PST by MHGinTN (Being deceived can be cured.)
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To: Kaslin

H... NO! evil people are....mother of child beat to death with a fence post to see what it felt like by a sociopathic drugie.


20 posted on 01/16/2013 7:07:20 AM PST by GailA ( those who do not keep promises to the Military, won't keep them to U)
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To: Doogle

My wife has a t-shirt that reads:

If guns kill people then spoons make Michael Moore fat.


21 posted on 01/16/2013 7:16:14 AM PST by Noamie
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To: Ancesthntr

NYC Public school rifle clubs— I also can confirm this. My school, in Manhattan, all male, had students from all 5 boroughs. Rifle club members came to school on public transportation, bus, subway and ferry, CARRYING their encased rifle. After school they would travel, on public transportation, to other schools for rifle meets. No fuss, no muss. The “rifle range” was in the basement of the school. A great movie , pointing out teenage troubles at the time, “Blackboard Jungle”. Glen Ford, Vic Morrow,Sidney Portier(Black guy is the “good guy”)


22 posted on 01/16/2013 7:17:25 AM PST by capt B
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To: Noamie

When I was in high school many of us had a shotgun or rifle in our trucks/cars. Not only was it permitted, but some times you could find a teacher out there with a student admiring a gun they got for Christmas or a birthday. It had been that way for.... about a century (not the cars, of course).

It was right around the Columbine shootings that they changed everything. There is so much that happened in the 90’s that the Left used to trample on Liberty that it is hard to calculate.


23 posted on 01/16/2013 7:22:59 AM PST by Noamie
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To: Kaslin
The City of Chicago High School system used to have award-winning rifle clubs for students. Somebody had the gall to point out that students enrolled in these classes had never been involved in a crime over the decades and this included high schools in high crime, high gang and high gun violence areas.

Mayor Daley II canceled the programs just a few years back. Can't have reality intruding on our politics can we?

24 posted on 01/16/2013 7:54:03 AM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: Kaslin

The left is the problem. Their fascism trumps any reality. Reality, however, is truth and it is reality that always defeats the left.


25 posted on 01/16/2013 2:59:34 PM PST by VRWC For Truth (Roberts has perverted the Constitution)
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To: Kaslin

Great Article!


26 posted on 01/17/2013 10:48:05 AM PST by Pagey
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