There were two school attacks today.

The first in Newtown, Connecticut, USA has left 20 children and 6 adults dead. The second, in Chengping village of Henan, China left 22 children and 1 adult injured. Both are sickening. But the big difference is the death toll.

China has strict gun control. The USA does not. As CNN (Hong Kong) notes:

no nation is immune from incidents of mass violence.

But the difference is the damage that can be done. And for a stable democracy like the USA, there is no excuse not to tighten gun laws. After all, the only victims are themselves.

8 Responses to A tale of two school attacks

  1. tgk1946 says:

    There is an “excuse”, Stephen. Waco & David Koresh.
    Perhaps the first step is to find a better framework for progress.
    Trevor

  2. Jim Rose says:

    well that is not going to happen, so what are you going to do now?

    does a war on guns have any greater chance of success than the current war on drugs?

    • Stephen says:

      Jim

      We know restricting guns can work just by looking at the gun-related death statistics for developed countries. The US stands out – on the wrong way.

      Will it happen in the US? That is up to Congress.

      • Jim Rose says:

        thanks stephen, gun control is easy in australia because there is a low-gun equilibrium. Gun crime is low.

        see http://www.harryrclarke.com/2012/12/16/gun-control-in-the-us-will-fail/#comments where HC points out that
        “the political popularity of guns is strengthened by Prisoner’s Dilemma disincentives for individuals to retreat from high levels of gun ownership.

        Accepting a gun buyback would be unattractive to citizens who would recognize high levels of overall gun ownership in the community and, hence, their own personal increased vulnerability if those with criminal intent acted rationally and kept their weapons.”

        I agree with HC. It is hard to get out of an arms race.

        I think that wishful thinking will not help. there is no arms race in australia, so there are far more options. pretending that there is a way around the recent supreme court decision wastes political energy.

        Getting rid of gun free zones are a better start. Spree killers overcome their delusions and the voices in their heads for long enough to invest much time finding places filled with defenceless victims. (Virginia Tech was a gun free zone). The last thing spree killers want is to be quickly shot down like the dogs they are such as at that american church in 2007. most mass shootings are in gun free zones,

  3. Ben says:

    Somehow even sadder, when you consider how mundane a news article this seems. These children will never receive the lines of newsprint that the Newtown kids will. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-20752337

  4. Yusuf says:

    In my opinion, there is no conclusive and normative thing to do. It is sad that mass shooting was targeted to young kids … Coming from this view, it seems that gun control is the way forward. But I also would like to point out that taking away gun from civilian also means putting “it” solely in the hands of the government. How about when the abuse happened with the gun-controller? The point above? How about numerous other abuse within the enforcement agency? From this view, getting rid of gun means taking away from these people their rights to self-defense.

    I can also point out that from the dawn of time … from the age of barbarian … killing and being killed are part of daily life. Higher-form living being, for example human, “eats” lower-form living being, for example another human or chicken. The rationale is simply that they have done something “wrong” that deserve to be killed or that they are “lower” form … They are animals …

    This event happened to be snake that has eaten other snake’s eggs (for whatever reason). It has eaten its own kind successor in life …. From this view of thinking, getting rid of gun is like getting rid of venoms from majority of snakes and putting it to the hand of special snake, Cobra.

    At the end of the day, it is a question between a totalitarian versus a libertarian regime. A normative of what “should” be done in the best interest of others AND a right to self-decide what is in the best interest of an enitiy (be it human, corporation, country etc).

  5. msar22 says:

    No one can argue that guns into a conflict do not lead to escalation of the damage inflicted (otherwise why would we issue them to soldiers). I know that I would rather be a mother rehabbing my son than burying him. These guns discharge 5 bullets per second.

    This isn’t an abstract argument between being libertarian and totalitarian. It should be a discussion about risk. We regulate the speed at which we drive, the medications that can be obtained over the counter, and the age at which our children can have consensual sex, and the standards that need to be adhered to to prevent injury when building a house? Why is this not discussed as another hazard to be managed.

  6. Yusuf says:

    Risk? What a balloney … Everything in life is risky. I guess you are referring whether one should have a locus of control on the enviroment surrounding oneself …

    Believing that one can control the universe? One can control aging? One can control weather? One can control how other people should go about death? One can control the evolution of disease? One can give indoctrination on how others “should” treat you….. based on the perceptional-biased of one degree, blood-line, wisdom, material wealth etc ….

    There are things that cannot be fully comprehend ….. let alone controlled … An attempt to manipulate it …. causes havoc ….Some unfortunate “snake” will bear the cost for all … the unsung heroes …. You think you are smart enough to tell what others should “do” with things inside their head …. in order to manage or to quantify this so-called “risk”? The downside of it … is a total loss …. No more no less …. No bullshit.

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