Is my fear of US gun culture justified?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by MorphingDragon, Feb 11, 2014.

  1. MorphingDragon macrumors 603

    MorphingDragon

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    #1
    I'll be honest, I'm straight up terrified by the USA's gun culture pretty much to the point of a phobia. The last time I was in the USA I was legitimately scared that some poster child of self-control and rationality would think that pointing a gun at my face to solve a problem is an AMAZING idea. The increased vitriol over the last few years among gun owners in the US really hasn't helped this either.

    If I end up moving to Washington, regardless of my relatively high opinion of that state it will still be in the back of my mind, unnerving my social interactions. Hell, the only thing that would stop me from getting a concealed carry license is the fact I won't hold a permanent green card, just so I wont be left upstream without a paddle if you catch my drift.

    I recently had a friend point out that this view is heavily influenced by the media that surrounds us. A lot of the news about some American doing something stupid with a gun comes to us via mainstream media. A media culture that's almost hell bent on painting America as some country continually in the throws of Psychosis when it comes to guns (among other things).

    Well my response is kind of... so? The spin on the stories doesn't change the fact those events happened and that America in general seems to have a high rate of people treating guns closer to toys or magical fairy dust that you can liberally apply to "problems". On top of all of this, with your political Zeitgeist falling apart at the seams it only seems to encourage more of the gun crazies to do crazy gun things because 'muuuurica.

    I dunno, am I creating my own boogieman? Or should I learn to temporarily cripple people with my hands faster than people can pull a trigger.
     
  2. Curun macrumors 6502

    Curun

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    #2
    FBI.gov statistics. In 2011.

    300 killed by rifles
    6,000 killed here by Handguns.

    Census.gov statistics, for 2009.(my quick google-fu didn't turn up matching years)

    35,900 killed by vehicles.

    Be far more scared of the drivers, than the people who might have guns.
     
  3. ugahairydawgs macrumors 68020

    ugahairydawgs

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    #3
    You fixate on something long enough and anything can scare you. The media plays a role in a lot of things like this. All we ever hear about are the worst of the worst cases of anything, be it guns, drugs, financial crimes, etc. The 24 hour news channels have a lot of air to fill, so they analyze events that happen from every angle possible and then seemingly invent a few of their own.

    Some people find it entertaining. I think it's a sickness.

    But back to your main question.....no. You shouldn't be afraid of Americans because of guns anymore than you should avoid flying because you fear the plane is going to crash. Bad things do happen, but those instances are generally the exception rather than the rule.
     
  4. Curun macrumors 6502

    Curun

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    #4
    Make sure not to fly here. News blurb says 349 died in planes in 2011. So flying in a plane is definitely more dangerous than US population having access to rifles as well.
     
  5. MorphingDragon thread starter macrumors 603

    MorphingDragon

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    #5
    Oh god, what if someone owns a car AND a gun!?

    [​IMG]
     
  6. tktaylor1 macrumors 6502a

    tktaylor1

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    #6
    No you shouldn't feel that way, unless you were to move into a high crime area. I'd say a high percentage of those 6000 killed by handguns stat is gang related.
     
  7. P-Worm macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

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    #7
    I would agree that I would guess all of that activity is gang related. I'm trying to think if I have ever seen a gun out in public (I definitely haven't seen a crime committed with one first hand), and I can't think of an instance.

    P-Worm
     
  8. SLC Flyfishing Suspended

    SLC Flyfishing

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    #8
    Same with me, and I'm from Utah; a state with some of the most liberal sets of gun laws, and highest per-capita gun ownership rates in the country.
     
  9. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    #9
    Politics, Religion, Social Issues and Guns

    As VB doesn't allow us to flag posts as ignore, it would be helpful, for those of us sick to death of the subject of guns, if MR had a Guns forum in PRSI to Ignore.

    But I will continue with my autonomic breathing.
     
  10. MorphingDragon thread starter macrumors 603

    MorphingDragon

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    #10
    Why do you think I posted it here. ;)
     
  11. BenTrovato macrumors 68020

    BenTrovato

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    #11
    Well you hit the nail on the head. Guns aren't the problem, the people behind the guns are the problem. We live in a disturbing time with so much disparity in wealth combined with so many people on medications. It's hard for people to be themselves and enjoy life on a large scale. When I'm in the US, I'll be more selective of what I say and am more aware of my surroundings. I definitely don't feel "free" and "secure" when I visit.
     
  12. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    #12
    To vex me?

    Better get in the line over there .... yes .... the long one.

    ;)
     
  13. Happybunny macrumors 68000

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    #13
    To be blunt your fears are unfounded, they are nothing more than media stories blown out of all proportion. You must keep in mind USA is a very large country with more than 300,000,000 people, there is bound to be bad apples.

    Only bad things make the news.


    I lived in the US (White Plains NY) from 1981-1983.

    Since then I have been on vacation to the USA on 6 separate occasions for vacations, staying on average for 5 weeks per trip. I can say without a doubt, I have never seen a violent crime with any sort of weapon, and further more I have never felt unsafe at any time during any on my time in the USA. I have travelled in all the States except for Alaska and Hawaii.

    I will further more say, on the whole most Americans whether from a urban or rural background, are friendly and polite. I have never had any trouble of any kind, I have found the average American to be a gracious host, and will go out their way to make you feel right at home.
     
  14. MorphingDragon thread starter macrumors 603

    MorphingDragon

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    #14
    Psch, nothing a good clinching to the solar plexus can't solve. Your lines to don't scare me... man.
     
  15. edk99 macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    Sure gang related would be a good part of it but also a lot of them would be acquaintances where the killer would know the victim. I'm not sure what the percentage would be but I'm thinking it is has to be way less then half where the killer shoots someone they don't know.
     
  16. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    #16
    That's what Harry Houdini thought too, but enough trivia for now. :)
     
  17. SoAnyway macrumors 6502

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    #17

    I do think that it is reasonable for you to feel a certain level of fear with the gun culture that you hear about. Although our country has a gun crisis, I'll tell you what I often tell travelers from more civilized areas of the world, you don't have the much to fear if you're in more densely populated areas of the country. Try avoiding the areas that you often associate with gun culture.

    As far as the media goes.... Over here we have a conservative media that continuously stokes the fear and paranoia that cause otherwise reasonably-minded people to go further off the cliff. You can thank Faux, Rush Limbaugh, Alex Jones, Glen Beck, and all the rest for the mass hysteria.
     
  18. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #18
    You are so far off that it's frightening ...

    So let's see ... between 2009 and 2013 there were ...

    ZERO Airline fatalities in the U.S.

    vs.

    over 44,000 firearm homicides.

    I think I'll take my chances in the air.
     
  19. CalWizrd Suspended

    CalWizrd

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    #19
    Since you are sick to death of the subject of guns, and the title of this thread is "Is my fear of US gun culture justified?", I'm having a really tough time understanding why you opened up the thread to read, much less felt compelled to post a message informing others about being sick to death of the subject.

    Or am I missing something here?
     
  20. colourfastt macrumors 6502a

    colourfastt

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    #20
    Oddly, I was in the grocery store last night and some middle-aged guy was open carrying a 9mm in the store.
     
  21. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #21
    Liberals have blown the problem out of proportion by including suicide related deaths with regular gun related homicides. If you stay away from urban gang territory your likelihood of being shot by someone else in the US is almost nil. The reported homicides are estimated to be 65-80% gang related.

    Cities to avoid: Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Cleveland, and New Orleans.
     
  22. VI™ macrumors 6502a

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    #22
    A woman I work with also has her private pilot's license. She's very nearly a serial killer. Now if only she was a male.
     
  23. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #23
    As long he wasn't pointing it at people...

    Really, I don't have too many problems with guns in and of themselves. I've seen a few people open carry in my day, and the only thing that ever bothers me is why some people feel the need to be armed to go to the damn grocery store.

    It's a bit of a truism that guns don't kill people, it's the people with guns who do. And that's the problem. From my experiences, people who open carry everywhere they go tend to be twitchy and a little overly paranoid. In some rare circumstances, I get the impression that someone is out looking for a reason to use their gun. They'll be more up in your face about things, like they're daring someone to come at them so they'll have an excuse to pull on them

    So no, it's not the guns I'm afraid of. Like I've said before in one of the tends of thousand gun threads that pop up around here, I've got a few myself. It's the attitude some people have about them that scares the hell out of me. For certain types of mindsets, guns act as both a portable self esteem generators, and enablers.

    Though to keep from scaring the poop out of MorphingDragon any more than he already has himself, these people are few and far between. The chances of him running into one where he's going are about nil.
     
  24. AustinIllini macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #24
    Chicago is amazing, though. Just research where you're going and don't got to parts of the city with high crime rate.
     
  25. ugahairydawgs macrumors 68020

    ugahairydawgs

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    #25
    Where do you get zero from? That plane that crashed on landing in SF last year killed a couple of people and I can remember another crash here in GA that killed a few as well.
     

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