is it safer to own a gun or not own a gun
own a gun
23.9% (116)
23.9% (116)
not own a gun
52.4% (254)
52.4% (254)
there both equally safe
12% (58)
12% (58)
no opinion...more bacon?
11.1% (54)
11.1% (54)
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Poll: is it safer to own a gun or not own a gun

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I live in Oregon in a little town called Eugene (University of Oregon anyone?) bears and mountain lions, cougars, very frequently wonder into town from the south hills, attack on people are rare because either animal control takes care of it before it's an issue or the animal is put down.

When I was little, around 4 years old, I remember seeing a mountain lion in a park I was playing in with a bunch of other kids (we were a couple miles from the nearest forest) I told my Dad, who was always packing a .357, and he shot it. Just a few months ago a dude was attacked while mountain biking on the edge of town.

Ignoring the human factor, and whatever situation escalation that may bring, guns diffidently make things safer.

Sir Broccoli:
I'd say it's safer to not own a gun. If someone pulls a gun on me I'd much rather give in to their demands than start a firefight.

just because you own a gun it DOESN'T mean you have to use it it jives you the option to use one
i wouldn't start a fire fight with some oone but if i felt like shooting some one was my only option besides letting some criminal do a number on me id shoot without hesitation

damn it double post, sorry my internet is acting weird ATM

It depends COMPLETELY on whether you know how to use it.

If you do, risk of self-injury is near none.

If you don't, you are probably going to hurt yourself or others.

I say yes, but because I live in America. I really think that the gun laws should be more biased. I mean I am 19 and own a technically fully automatic AK-47 legally.

Just some better form's of screening would be nice to prevent criminal's and mentally unstable people from having these thing's.

But the real issue is gun's we don't have control over, gun's being gotten people through illegal mean's. So even if we couldn't buy gun's easily the people using them for crime would likely still have them

You are at your absolute safest when nobody owns a gun. No matter what people might claim about crime rates, gun crime really isn't equivalent to knife crime, I'd be far more worried about being robbed if people were armed with stuff more deadly than knives, to accidentally kill someone with a knife is much more difficult and it's much easier to run away. Besides, unless you're going to be carrying the thing around the whole time it's basically useless, the only times it'd get pulled out if if you get burgled, in which case there are plenty of other methods to secure your house that don't involve allowing access to deadly weapons for anyone who wants one.

Marcus Kehoe:

But the real issue is gun's we don't have control over, gun's being gotten people through illegal mean's. So even if we couldn't buy gun's easily the people using them for crime would likely still have them

They don't because there are essentially none in the country. Black market guns don't just magically appear, if they're hard to obtain legally then they'll also be hard to obtain for criminals.

Example: During the american prohibition, it was difficult to illegally obtain any alcohol that wasn't home brewed, hence shitty, low quality alcohol and the birth of the cocktail. Right now, it's quite easy to get alcohol illegally because it's widely available legally. All you have to do is persuade someone who's eligible to get it for you.

Depends on the situation and the person carrying it, i'd rather noone had firearms except the military and the police, even if you do own a gun to protect yourself theres no telling what could happen if the situation presents itself, you might get killed yourself or kill the attacker and get your ass locked up for murder.

I'm all for guns. You see here in Britain we have very little gun crime, but in exchange we're more likely to get stabbed than Americans are to get shot. Since everyone seems pretty violent here I'd love to be able to defend myself.

Depends on where you are and who you are. If you live in south-central LA or some parts of detroit, and you both have a gun and are able to use it safely, you're WAY safer than if you're unarmed. If you're living out where I do, where the biggest hazard you'll ever bump into is a wayward cow or a possum, you aren't any safer with or without it.

This is easy...

If a gun is readily available, it's more likely to be used in a crime. Period. If guns get used in petty crimes the number of people fatally wounded rises dramatically.

We're not talking about serious crimes here like hit-men, gang violence etc. Professional "jobs" like that have ways of getting hold of firearms no matter where in the world you live via the black market.

I'm talking about drug addicts stealing stuff for their fix. Jealous husbands who've just found out their wife cheated on them, or the guy who just lost his job and has an axe to grind with his former employer or the bullied college kid who decides to take out his frustrations and go well beyond merely getting even with his bullies.

Outside of crimes, kids getting their dad's pistol, woman fumbling in her handbag and knocks the safety off all cause gunshot related accidents too.

And then on the self defence front, there's the have-a-go-heroes who get themselves shot by pulling a gun in self defence, when if they'd just bowed to the attackers wishers, nobody'd been hurt...

On the whole the amount of times an armed person successfully defends themselves is vastly outweighed by the extra incidents created by an armed population...

It's not safer.
A gun won't stop a bullet from entering your brain.
Lots of armour does.
Unless it's an armour piercing bullet.
Then you need more layers of armour.

Owning a gun just makes it so more people should wear armour.

Agayek:

Tanksie:
if no one owns a gun then everyone is safe.

this is why we have very few firearms crimes in australia.

i would give my opinions as to the americans laws involving guns but last time i tried i was suspended.

If no one owns a gun, they'll just find something else to kill/attack people with. The fantasy that safety comes from banning weapons is just that, a fantasy. The single most dangerous weapon is utterly impossible to ban without making lobotomies mandatory, everything else is just window dressing.

If you want to stop violent crime, the only way to do so is to make nobody want to commit violence, and that's impossible for all intents and purposes.

it impossible to completely get rid of sure, but to lower it by huge amounts is possible, through various means such as proper education, government providing real work opportunities for people and people generally becoming more tolerant to people of different choices preferences or skin colours then their own.

These things take time but if the right things are done then it can lessen the impact.

Burst6:

Baneat:

Armed robbery happens often in the USA, though, definitely more than the UK. Thieves don't really consider things correctly, to be honest.

I tried to look at the actual statistics, but because the two websites for US and UK crime rates i looked at were arranged differently, and the countries gather information differently, i didn't bother trying to research it (not really worth it for an internet forum).

But i did a quick Google search and from what i can find Great Britain has a higher violent crime rate than the U.S.

So yeah, UK has a smaller gun crime rate, but a higher crime rate in general.

EDIT: The captcha asked me to describe Gatorade. I typed in why is this a captcha and it accepted it. It's sort of missing the point if you can just type in anything isn't it?

Even if it has a higher crime rate, I'm willing to put money down that the mortality rate overall due to violent crime is lower. If I'm right, in terms of people getting killed Britain's safer without civilians owning guns. The violent crime rates you said you found were surprising, usually USA is considered to be higher with these things but like you I don't care enough to properly check.

regarding the captcha, sometimes they make people do things. They often give you 2 words, one of which is a word the computer couldn't scanlate so they get you to translate it on your behalf (They'll have no idea if you put the right thing in)

Sounds like you got subjected to some market research.

Daystar Clarion:
That really depends on where you live.

If you live in America, where guns are an ingrained part of their culture, then you're much more likely to have to defend yourself against someone with a gun, and the best way to do that, is with a gun.

While here in the UK, it's very rare to hear about gun crime and I believe letting the public get their hands on them would cause more harm than good.

I don't know about the more urban parts of the UK, but I'm in the countryside. To quote Hot Fuzz: "Everybody and their mums are packing round here". We have absolutely no gun crime, I'll tell you. Though we are strictly talking air rifles, hunting rifles and double barrel shotguns.

My uncle recently got a semi-automatic eight chamber shotgun though. Cannot fucking wait to have a go with it.

Not owning a gun is definitely more dangerous than having something that puts instant fear/recoil into an assailant.

Guns may one day save your ass so keep one handy!

Banning weapons doesn't mean criminals don't have them. But it does mean average people don't have them, and if you don't pull a gun on someone who makes a living stealin' shit and other assorted activities, you're less likely to get murdelized.
Dere. My 2 cents.

Both are safe.

A gun does not go off by itself and it's pretty safe.

A weapon needs to have a round in the chamber and have it's mechanism cocked to work. In case of double action firearms it requires a long trigger pull to cock it, so it's somewhat an added safety.

Plus, they also include a manual safety that locks it's mechanism. Glocks don't have that safety, they have a trigger safety.

Daystar Clarion:
I believe letting the public get their hands on them would cause more harm than good.

What part of "almost everyone in the countryside has a gun" don't you understand?

The UK has a lot more firearms than you imagine, you have to trust your countrymen, dude.

Doitpow:
to you as an individual

99% it is safer to not own one. You might have kids, for example. Even in a regular firing range guns can misfire and hurt someone. Shotguns misfire so often it's scary. People breaking into your house see you have a gun cabinet, pick the lock and now they are armed.
1% might be help by having a gun, an armed break in or a mugging can be turned around pretty fast just buy showing one.

to society

I would say it is always safer for civilians to be unarmed.

but what would I know, I'm just a limey communist.

Yeah, I would like some credible stats because in my life I have never seen a shotgun have a misfire or a hang-fire.

Plus, why would you point a gun at someone? If it misfires and it hits someone, then you're a retard for not having it pointed downrange.

I like the part about communism, though. I remembered another reason to own guns. Communists don't want guns, so therefore it's logic that I should own guns.

Thank you communists. You help me a lot because you always want the opposite I want.

bahumat42:
it impossible to completely get rid of sure, but to lower it by huge amounts is possible, through various means such as proper education, government providing real work opportunities for people and people generally becoming more tolerant to people of different choices preferences or skin colours then their own.

These things take time but if the right things are done then it can lessen the impact.

Somehow I don't like the idea that the government is spending my money on "education" but I have been mugged by whites and blacks.

That also get welfare checks that I paid for.

I'm going to say they're both equally safe, at least where I'm from. The risk of getting mugged in a dark alley while you have your gun on you is low, but then again so is shooting yourself if you follow basic gun safety.

ElPatron:
Snip

People in the country have them for pest control/hunting.

I wouldn't let half the people I see in a city touch anything with gunpowder in it.

If you own a gun for protection, then be prepared to pull it out and use it. As in fire it and not use it for show. You are more likely to be hurt by your own weapon if robbed, as in if you pull a knife or gun but dont use it - then your more likely gonna have the criminal take it and use it on you.

I have no real issue with gun ownership, more to do with the lax laws and security most people have. I for one do not want to be shot cos some retard left his gun out for his 10 year old to play with.

jpoon:
Not owning a gun is definitely more dangerous than having something that puts instant fear/recoil into an assailant.

Im in the UK and i agree. But its the security that allows kids to get them and shoot up schools etc i have issue with. That and crazy people. Need more security.

Daystar Clarion:
People in the country have them for pest control/hunting.

Or just because they love shooting?

It's not like the FAL is a varmint hunting weapon.

But yeah, I have been to London and it was pretty shitty. Guns are everywhere but in the hands of responsible citizens.

SonOfVoorhees:

jpoon:
Not owning a gun is definitely more dangerous than having something that puts instant fear/recoil into an assailant.

Im in the UK and i agree. But its the security that allows kids to get them and shoot up schools etc i have issue with. That and crazy people. Need more security.

I would bet in 95% of the situations it's the drugs the kids were on (pharmaceuticals) before a shooting that are the true cause of a shooting. I'd be blaming big pharma well before I'd be blaming a weapon. If guns weren't there, they'd just go for the next best weapon; bombs, knives, throwing stars & samurai swords.

Blobpie:
Useing a gun in self-defense will go two ways:
1.it deters the criminal
2.It escalates the situation (IE he criminal either pulls a gun, or shoots)

Sounds reasonable: If someone breaks into you home with a gun and you respond with your own gun the odds of a Mexican Standoff are slim: It's more likely one of the two will end up with an unwanted torso or, limb piercing. If someone breaks into your house with nothing but a crow-bar (and they aren't Gordon Freeman) they'll likely turn right around and leave when confronted with a home-owner wielding a firearm.

Honestly though, I don't think owning a gun really makes you safer (and I was born and raised in the US of all places!). If a gun-wielding manic breaks into your house in the dead of night, the only chance you'll have is if you keep your own gun under your pillow and have precognition.

xSKULLY:
snip

To me it's all still about escalating situations, especially with gangs. While gangs aren't as organised as in America they are still common.

It starts with brawling, then they start bring bottles and big sticks, move on to knives and fire bombs and finally you could end up with guns. I know it's the classic slippery slope crap but it isn't out of the realms of possibilities.

In terms of none gang related people, why are you getting people so pissed at you they want to harm you? Try being less of a prick and maybe people wont want to hurt/kill you.

In terms of muggings and rapes, what are you going to do? Either forget about your gun in the panic and confusion or your going to start shooting? In that situation how accurate are you really going to be? I get the impression is you're going to turn into stormtrooper, so you end up being more dangerous than the mugger could ever be.

Even if you do turn into Max Pain and bullet time it to hit the person, are you really ok with the after math of killing or seriously hurting them? What did the mugger take? A bit of cash and maybe your phone, killing or seriously hurting somebody for a phone and a bit of cash ... I would think "was that really worth it? A persons life for about 100".

I think guns are like an illusion of security, "I have this gun, nobody will fuck with me!". I doubt there are going to be many people who are going to walk up to you and say "I am going to do X to you now" so you can react.

Even if somebody does get pissed at you at a bar, you bringing out a gun has just gone from "sorry I spilled your pint" to your ass getting thrown out the bar for raising a gun.

In a purse snatching scenario the person is going to blind side you then run off, are you going to turn on the guy and shoot (at) him? Is his life worth the contents of your bag? What happens if you miss? Are you ok with potentially killing an innocent person or traumatizing somebody?

If somebody tries to rape you (or some other super close quarters crime) are you going to wrestle that person and reach for your gun, then aim, then kill? 'cos I doubt they are going to see the gun and think "oh shit, run away".

I just can't think of scenario where a gun would be of any use other than like a CCTV, as a visual deterrent, even then don't you have to have a special permit to have it on display? So whats the point in a hidden one? So you can be a hero at a bank robbery?

Sorry but guns will always seem a stupid idea to me, especially thinking about the kind of dumb dumbs out there, just read not always right.com ... imagine them people with a gun.

(I know I shouldn't post in this thread 'cos I know I will be quoted 200 times)

EDIT: Plus the whole thing leaves a rather sour taste in my mouth, like "locker room" talk. It's all very "Me. Man. Me. Like. Gunz. Hurr hurr hurr." ... for a classic example "My uncle recently got a semi-automatic eight chamber shotgun though. Cannot fucking wait to have a go with it." ..... It's an instrument of death, it's only reason for being is to kill and this guy treats it like a 5 year old treated the will when it first came out.

"I cannot wait to have a go of it", like it's a swing or something!

You would have to pay me (not a lot though) to fire a gun, I just have no interest in guns. I wouldn't mind being shot with a paintball gun though, always wondered how much it hurts.

Sigh.

Before we get into this any more, I'm just going to clarify a few things about myself:
- I am American
- I own multiple firearms

Personally, I believe it is safer to have a firearm on you. Having a firearm levels the playing field. If a crook comes at me with a knife in hand, instead of having to wrestle him in a situation where he could most likely overpower me, I could simply pull up a pistol and stop him dead in his tracks. The power of a firearm is simply one that levels everything.

I don't think I would ever want to live in the UK when you consider that you'd only have your fists to protect you while a criminal could easily have a knife or even a smuggled firearm to use on you. You obeyed the law which makes you defenseless. I think it's unfair they do that to you.

Why would owning a gun make things unsafe unless you're an idiot?

Just have it there for added security, and don't use it unless you feel it necessary. Got kids in the house? Lock it up with lots of locks and keys. Anyone with a logical way of thinking and some common sense can own a gun and only make it safer.

I don't think owning a gun is a benefit in terms of self defense, as a responsible owner will keep the weapon unloaded and locked away to avoid accidential abuse by someone else, especially children regardless of where you live.

If you own a gun, use it responsibly for target practice and sport events, you are not inherently unsafer then if you not owned a gun.

Accidents involving firearms usually involve people who should not have access to them in the first place - Children, teenagers and people who can not handle them responsibly.

Daystar Clarion:
That really depends on where you live.

^this^

Daystar Clarion:
If you live in America, where guns are an ingrained part of their culture, then you're much more likely to have to defend yourself against someone with a gun, and the best way to do that, is with a gun.

^but not this^

If you live in an apartment complex in an urban area, owning a gun... even knowing how to use said gun and being a master of combat tactics... will not save you from criminals out to take your life with guns. Your only hope then involves the police. You are not a movie action hero.
Also, if someone comes into your apartment to steal something... and you shoot that person to death, you are generally considered a murderer.
Do I think people living in apartments shouldn't own guns? No. If you want a gun safe in your apartment and you like hitting a local indoor range, go for it... I just think you shouldn't try to keep them handy as home defense weapons. The police have your back, urbanites. Call 'em up.

As for me, I live in the middle of nowhere. The police take a minimum of 30 minutes to reach my home. Thus, home defense weapons are necessary for me.

loc978:

Daystar Clarion:
That really depends on where you live.

^this^

Daystar Clarion:
If you live in America, where guns are an ingrained part of their culture, then you're much more likely to have to defend yourself against someone with a gun, and the best way to do that, is with a gun.

^but not this^

If you live in an apartment complex in an urban area, owning a gun... even knowing how to use said gun and being a master of combat tactics... will not save you from criminals out to take your life with guns. Your only hope then involves the police. You are not a movie action hero.
Also, if someone comes into your apartment to steal something... and you shoot that person to death, you are generally considered a murderer.
Do I think people living in apartments shouldn't own guns? No. If you want a gun safe in your apartment and you like hitting a local indoor range, go for it... I just think you shouldn't try to keep them handy as home defense weapons. The police have your back, urbanites. Call 'em up.

As for me, I live in the middle of nowhere. The police take a minimum of 30 minutes to reach my home. Thus, home defense weapons are necessary for me.

It's a case by case basis of course. Obviously a gun is a last resort, but in a country with so many guns, it's just unfeasible to expect people not to have them. The police have them, because criminals are more likely to have them.

You know what I mean, you're just being pedantic :D

Depends on where you live. If you live in a crime ridden scum hole where everyone has a gun then you need one for self defense. If you live in an area where no one owns a gun, then having a gun is probably more dangerous because chances are that someone won't shoot you but the chance that you will shot yourself stays the same regardless, leading to less offsetting good.

Daystar Clarion:
That really depends on where you live.

If you live in America, where guns are an ingrained part of their culture, then you're much more likely to have to defend yourself against someone with a gun, and the best way to do that, is with a gun.

While here in the UK, it's very rare to hear about gun crime and I believe letting the public get their hands on them would cause more harm than good.

Ah, no, sorry dude. Guns aren't part of American culture. Military praise is, so it's understandable that you and many others would make that mistake, but guns as a whole are only ingrained into certain sub cultures (more in the southern/western states). In fact, the number of people who don't believe in civilian ownership of guns is climbing, if I've been correctly informed.

Anyway, I'd say that if you're properly trained and disciplined and living by yourself, owning or not owning a gun doesn't make things safer or less safe than anyone else.

Add variables like little training/self discipline, untrained roommates/family members, or other things, and it becomes significantly LESS safe. ESPECIALLY if you have children who like to explore. If they find that gun, you have a potential problem.

So it ranges from neutral to less safe, in my humble opinion.

I love how people think that someone who wants to mug, rape or whatever do to them will come in front of them and clearly show his/her intention.

Just think about it. If you where a thief/rapist, would you go directly to the person, showing obviously your intention or would you try to sneak up to them and put a knife at their throat?
Lets assume it's completely safe and they have no way to defend them self, they still can scream and run away.

The number of such idiots who will do that is (I believe) much lower than those smarter one.
The only situation that I can think of, where a gun would save your life is if someone tries to break in your house without a gun and you have one. If you both have one, it's more likely that one of you gets shot. If just one has it, the other will most likely "give up", that is, just let him steal all the shit he wants or he will run away if you have a gun. But securing your home from burgles isn't that hard. Just pay for a good door and safe windows if they can access trough them. it's not even that expensive. Cheaper than a good gun and bullets (at least in my country where owning a gun is possible, but restricted and you need a licence to own it).

Someone said that he's on the countryside and there isn't much crime. Well duh. I remember the last countryside crime I read about in my country. It was ~1.5 years ago and it was about a (mentally damaged) guy who killed his parents with his fathers gun (which he had illegally from war). Cities have a much higher crime rate than countryside and that's almost universal (AFAIK).

As someone already said, guns give you just an illusion of safety, nothing more.

loc978:

If you live in an apartment complex in an urban area, owning a gun... even knowing how to use said gun and being a master of combat tactics... will not save you from criminals out to take your life with guns. Your only hope then involves the police. You are not a movie action hero.
Also, if someone comes into your apartment to steal something... and you shoot that person to death, you are generally considered a murderer.
Do I think people living in apartments shouldn't own guns? No. If you want a gun safe in your apartment and you like hitting a local indoor range, go for it... I just think you shouldn't try to keep them handy as home defense weapons. The police have your back, urbanites. Call 'em up.

You don't know urban areas that well, do you? There are places in most major metropolitan areas that the police take a half hour to arrive, not because they're far away, but because it took them that much time to round up 'enough' cops that they feel safe entering it. (Homewood in Pittsburgh immediately springs to mind, though Compton out west I'm told is similar.)

Also, I might point this out but, depending on the state in the US, home invaders can be legally shot.

And, frankly, if you really want to kill people, there's no end to human inventiveness. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akihabara_massacre

Tipsy Giant:
Owning a gun is never safe, who knows what you'll do when you are drunk and something major aggravates you.... Best to not bother

I am a little depressed that no one has called bullshit on this post.

Seriously, if you get drunk and something aggravates you that bad then a hammer or knife will do just as well, and better in some cases, than a gun. To think you need a gun to kill or hurt someone while you are drunk and annoyed is brainless.

Also, I am digging the new captchas.

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