THIS ^^This is a pretty difficult discussion to have intelligently over the internet, as we are all pretty aware....
..i guess if I had a contribution to make, i would probably sum it up with my own life experience. The short, 2 liner version of that would be that I came out of college a hard core left wing supporter, and very anti gun, for all the reasons people are. In between college and the military I did a near decade long stint at a major metropolitan police department where carry of concealed firearms was a luxury reserved for the politically connected. Nothing has made me more pro RKBA than my time on the street.
-Any able bodied adult of sound mind should be able to possess and carry a weapon without unreasonable barrier. Open carry should be permitted in rural areas.
-Background checks are completely reasonable and should not be opposed by anyone. There is no reason you should not have to submit to a background check to obtain your firearm. The rub comes in when purchases and background checks are kept on file by the government. As katrina/No showed us, the government will take armed men and go door to door with those records and seize your arms. This is unacceptable and should be opposed.
-We need to evaluate what we are doing in our mental health treatment system. Kids are seriously under disciplined, under parented, over medicated, and heavily neglected across the economic and racial spectrum.(some, not all....) We need to seriously look at the kinds of medication getting pushed out by big pharma. With very few exceptions, almost all of our "mas cas" incidents not tied to a particular religion, can be put squarely in the lap of a psychotropic drug. Where is the cut off for this? I dont presume to have the answers. The concern here, obviously, is that "anyone who sees a psychologist" will be prohibited, which isnt the answer.
-We need to have SERIOUS reform to our legal system. This "court room immunity" needs to go away. What judges and lawyers do in courtrooms, if people paid attention, would be grounds to riot. I cannot begin to tell you the number of cases I worked where the prosecutor, in an effort to keep a "winning record" would offer the defense "I'll drop the aggravated/weapon related charge if you'll plea to the property crime" Armed robberies became theft. Home invasions became burglary or theft. Violent felonies became misdemeanors at the snap of a finger. We have seriously dangerous people walking the streets free today because we refuse to dramatically punish violent crimes.
-some right wing Gun nuts need to calm the hell down. The stuff I see on the interwebs does nothing to help the cause.
-some on the left need to calm the hell down. The demagoguery and false narrative surrounding some of the reporting is dishonest at best.
-we need to start having a real conversation about the problem of violence in our country, and it aint about the guns. Its about society. Like it or not, convenient to your sensibilities or not, the truth is this: the vast majority of all crimes -especially violent ones- are committed by racial minorities in economically depressed urban environments. Period. If we want to see things in this country change, we need to get serious about engaging our communities and turning lives around at a cultural level. I dont pretend to have the answers for that. That is a complex problem I dont see a solution to because of how entrenched in politics we have become, and how politicized every facet of that issue has been made. But banning john-q-public from possessing a legal firearm because a criminal illegally used an illegally obtained weapon is like cutting your neighbors balls off in hopes of preventing a pregnancy of your own. Its lunacy of the highest order.
-The media is outright responsible for the narrative going on right now. I'm really tired of seeing what they have done with their reporting of some of these incidents, and these protests are out of control. In short, if a cop has done wrong, then they need to stand before a jury of their peers and face the music. But just because a cop used force against someone that is unarmed doesnt make it unreasonable, despite what the media wants to parlay for ratings. I have seen examples of both in this last year that have been sensationalized in the media. The problem I have is how disingenuous the narrative is.
The hardest part about all of this is having a conversation that resembles sensible discourse. That is almost impossible given how entrenched people have become, on both sides, largely around what they see politicized. Youve got people on the left that want to horribly distort the history of this country and what these rights mean for the citizen with their incredibly warped view of the concept of the bill of rights. Combine that with extreme naivety, and you have a recipe for victimization. Youve got people on the right saying that "by gaw-damnit, ISS MAH RAAAGHT TUH HAS UH DA GAWN JAVELIN MISSILE LAUNCHER!." Its ridiculous. Sensible regulation does not equate to infringement.
In my opinion, any citizen should be permitted the arms allowed to their locals police force. Im tired of hearing police refer to citizens as "civilians". Police forget that they too, are civilians.
That's my $.02