Does the average man on the street know anything about guns?

  • Mark

    Haha,”My Cameraman just peed himself!”

  • Spiker

    I don’t know how they could do that with a straight face. Sheesh people are stupid.

  • veridian

    Feelings trump facts.

  • jimknowsall

    Not quite sure of the point of this. Picking out people who don’t own guns, telling them lies about the guns in front of them and misleading them, and then wondering why they get confused responses? Come on, this is neither informative nor funny. If you want to highlight ignorance about firearms, then fine, but don’t exclude all the people who might know anything about them from the outset.

    [edit: added last sentence]

    • Ghost

      What? Dont you know this was how the MSSA legislation was passed in NZ, in fact, this is how most gun laws are presented and passed in a lot of countries. Uninformed and ignorant populace, lied to, mislead. This is exactly how most bad laws are presented and passed around the world.

      • jimknowsall

        OK, I now see the point you are making and what the video was trying to do. Still, I think it considerably weakens their argument to actively turn away those who do know about firearms.

        BTW, it seems to me that most firearms legislation is brought in not because of lies, but after various massacres where the criminal used the type of firearms in question and there was a general outcry as to why such weapons were even allowed to be held. Being from the UK, I have in mind the Hungerford massacre, following which semi-automatics and multicartridge shotguns were banned, and Dunblane after which handguns were banned. Neither were felt to have much purpose other than killing people. (It should be noted that carrying firearms for self-defence has never been seen to be valid in the UK, unlike in the US). Pistol target shooters disagreed and had a fair point though. These laws were brought in after public petitions demanded them, not lies from politicians.

        • Ghost

          Exactly, the public who has little actual knowledge of firearms demanded this to prevent shooting and crime, so how has it worked out for the UK? has this in anyway reduced crime or illegal use of firearms?

          • jimknowsall

            Like it or not Ghost, we live in a democracy, not a technocracy. The public via their MPs and public protest make the rules, t “experts”. Sure, we need to be careful about the tyranny of the majority, but let’s not pretend that gun ownership comes under that category.

          • Ghost

            Thats what the video was inherantly about, its not even tyranny of the majority, it tyranny of the ill-informed, they just showed that you can get people who know nothing about the subject matter, throw in a few select words, present an argument and get them to sign a petition. Job done. Now the illusion of the democracy is complete.

          • jimknowsall

            Well if that’s all you want to show, it was done much better and with much more wit on Yes Minister 30 years ago.
            Still, you sound like you think there is some conspiracy going on here, to ban or restrict guns, which there really isn’t. Most people, including politicians, are just interested in making the world a safer place, even if we can argue all day about whether banning guns actually achieves that end. Whilst I agree that MSSA is bad law because it is illogical tokenism, there is nothing inherently wrong with deciding to ban, say semi automatic weapons in general. It’s just that you happen not to agree with such a law. And, as with much in life, that mostly comes down to a matter of opinion and priorities, not a definitive right or wrong answer.

          • Ghost

            30 years ago… that soooooo old, but no it’s not the wit, its the aspect of getting people to agree on a point of view on a subject they know nothing about. Now you lost me at the conspiracy comment unfortunately, you were doing well up to this point. I don’t believe there is a conspiracy, I have far better subject to have conspiracy’s on. Your comment about there being nothing inherently wrong about deciding to ban semi auto weapons in general to me sums up your values. I don’t believe we should have laws for the sake of having laws, I think laws should be there for the common good without placing onerous restrictions on peoples lives. You want to ban semi auto’s? Why, for the sake of a firearms discussion, are they more dangerous than other types of firearms? For criminals are they the weapon of choice, for terrorist activities are the would a law prevent further attacks? The answer to all three is no. So what really are you trying to achieve, a sense of security for the unknowledgeable, probably, this would get a politician votes, but wouldn’t actually achieve anything. However, you must start with the portion of the population that doesn’t know anything about a subject and shape there opinion so they vote for it, as per video, its easily (if not wittily in your opinion) done.

          • jimknowsall

            I agree it is a question of values, but who’s to say yours are more valid than mine, or those of some other person? Obviously you take a libertarian viewpoint, and that’s fine. I would certainly agree with your statement about “I don’t believe we should have laws for the sake of having laws, I think laws should be there for the common good without placing onerous restrictions on peoples lives”. But there’s the point. Not being able to own semi automatic weapons, say, is hardly an “onerous” restriction on your life. Mildly inconvenient at most. And the benefit to removing such weapons is certainly debateable. It depends how much good flows from such a decision and at what cost to personal liberty, and the answer to that is not black and white. After all, you can find plenty of people that felt that having to wear seat belts or cycle helmets is an affront to their personal choice and an onerous restriction on their lives. The often grey nature of such decisions is highlighted by cycle helmets being compulsory in NZ, but not in the UK.

            The point about a “conspiracy” is that if there is a general feeling in the population that your right to have certain firearms is less important than the dangers (perceived or actual), then MPs will listen to that opinion and legislate accordingly, having balanced the needs of those who use such weapons. But it won’t be some conspiratorial idea from the State to keep is citizenry powerless. That’s the sort of 2nd amendment nonsense you hear in the US, which to me at least, sounds like ludicrous paranoia.

          • Ghost

            It is certainly a question of values, and you should not, nor should you want to, impose your values on another, like wise I should not impose my values on you. Now you wanting to impose what I can own, crosses that line, and is never ending argument as to what other people should or shouldn’t have, particularly when you claim that it is not an onerous imposition, for the benefit or safety of society.
            The US Constitution is a particularly interesting document, particularly the wording and placement of the 2nd amendment. And disagree all you want, but there is a distict pattern between government disarmament and government genocide over the past 100 years and more. Or maybe that’s just my paranoia. Not saying it would happen but you should always learn from history.

        • Mike Webber

          The result was a 50% increase of murders and a huge increase in violent crime. This is the usual result in most places.

          • jimknowsall

            That’s simply not true Mike. I suspect you got your 50% figure from the “Crime Prevention Research Center” right? It seems to be a fairly thinly disguised pro-gun lobby. Its statistic only works if you fudge the years you look at and ignore long term trends. Take a look at this link which has a graph of homicides from 1960 to 2012.
            You will see that there is a steadily rising rate from 1960 to just after 2000, when the inclusion Harold Shipman’s activities cause a peak. Since then, the homicide rate has fallen steadily and fairly sharply to a level not seen since the early 80s. The impact of the gun bans is not actually apparent at all, but then homicide using a gun is a very rare crime amongst all homicides in the UK, so it probably gets lost in the statistical noise,

          • Mike Webber

            These are some of the facts available on the internet.

            Data out from the UK, where guns are banned, shows gun crime has soared by 35 percent.

            Data from 2009 shows gun violence in the UK has increased by 89 percent

            The only guys who have guns in this case are the bad guys, since guns are banned for the good guys in the UK.

            After the ban, clearly homicide rates bounce around over time, but there is only one year (2010) where the homicide rate is lower than it was in 1996. The immediate effect was about a 50 percent increase in homicide rates. Firearm homicide rate had almost doubled.

          • jimknowsall

            The graph I linked to clearly shows that, other than a small spike in the early 2000s (mainly due to Shipman), the homicide rate has fallen significantly and consistently since the 1996 ban. In any case, whilst I agree that the evidence for a reduction in homicide due to the gun bans is weak, it makes no sense to suggest that such bans can possibly increase gun homicide in an of themselves. There is absolutely no culture in the UK of using guns for self-defence or having one handy just in case, so even assuming that criminals’ access to guns is not affected in any way by the bans, by what mechanism would you suggest that the gun murder rate could increase? After all, one of the main benefits of restricting firearms is that criminals like burglars don’t feel the need to do a break-in carrying firearms, and the level of violence is consequently ratcheted down. In the US, there is a serious risk the homeowner has a gun, so they go similarly armed, with all too often tragic consequences for either party.

  • Greg O-Connor in his Newstalk ZB interview stated that semi-autos were basically machine guns.

    and Professor Alexander Gillespie agrees. These are 2 of the ignorants advising the select committee.

    Check out this statement he (Alex) made to me when challenged about Semi Autos being machine guns.

    “Technically, – absolutely not – but if you have a firearm, in which a halfway competent shooter could fire, say, 100 bullets in a minute – most members of the public will identify that as a machine gun, irrespective of the technicalities. “

  • Professor Alexander Gillespie @12:27pm yesterday in an email to me.

    “The more regulation now, the better for everyone, shooters and non-shooters.”

    This is the guy talking to select committee. I can see some quick and dirty regulations coming our way.

    • Ghost

      So this guy, a professor, supposed to be smart, thinks regulation will fix everything.