NY Governor Seems To Think The Constitution Doesn't Apply There

from the go-for-it-smartypants dept

Right after a judge in Louisiana blasted lawmakers there for passing a law trying to ban the sale of violent video games to minors when it clearly wouldn't stand up in court, New York Governor Eliot Spitzer says getting a similar law passed is one of his top legislative priorities. Now, considering that Spitzer's a lawyer and used to be the state's attorney general, you'd imagine he might be, you know, familiar with laws and the Constitution and stuff. But apparently not. Despite court after court pointing out that these laws are unconstitutional, he wants to press on. Why don't we save everybody the trouble, and just have the video-game industry estimate what their legal bill to get the law overturned will be, and just go ahead and send Spitzer the bill now? That way, the outcome will be the same, except New York taxpayers won't have to watch Spitzer and the state's legislators waste their time and money in passing the bill.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Prophet, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 3:31am

    like we all didnt know that somehow this whole VT thing would somehow be blamed on the video games or warped into somthing somehow pushed through while everyone is upset about violence in our culture

    First.......

     

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  2.  
    icon
    TX CHL Instructor (profile), Apr 19th, 2007 @ 4:06am

    The People's Republic of NY

    NY left the US several years ago, having repealed several parts of the Constitution, starting with the 2nd Amendment.
    --
    Concealed Handgun License Courses in Plano, TX

     

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  3.  
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    Al, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 4:32am

    Wait you have the wrong idea

    Politicians are wired to spend the publics money it is what they do so as long as we can keep them busy doing stupid things that just spend money and not destroy our rights it is a good thing. Every day we more and more live in a police state where you loose rights. so keep em busy with plans that will fail so they dont think about the stuff that might not.

     

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  4.  
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    comboman, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 4:52am

    Stupid Law Makers

    Trying to ban the sale of violent video games to minors? Ridiculous! What's next, banning the sale of violent or sexually explicit movies to minors? Banning the sale of alcohol and cigarettes to minors? What a shocking abuse of the constitutional right to get drunk, watch porn and perform simulated violence.

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:25am

    Ban Bad Parents

    Don't blame the video games, blame the parents that use the video games as baby-sitters. Spend more time with your kids and they won't grow up to be all violent and warped in the head.

    Misplacing blame doesn't help to solve a problem, it only prolongs the problem and it's effects.

     

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  6.  
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    Anony, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:32am

    Re: Stupid Law Makers

    The only threat in your group is the one with the least controversy: Alcohol and cigarettes.

     

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  7.  
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    Sanguine Dream, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:32am

    Publicity...

    Its all about publicity. Starting from the first person that tried to push a statewide ban on violent games (or was the first attempt nationwide I don't recall) all these people have one thing in common. They all want to be the first one to pass some law that bans violent games.

    Think about any show or movie that had a nearly impposible task like catching a legendary fish, defeating a world class athlete, or winning against some uber pool player. Everyone wants to be the one that completes the impossible task first, which takes away the impossible part.

    Consider for a moment the ego (and more importantly political) boost a legislator would get for being "the first politician to pass a state ban on violent games". Being the one that blazed the trail that leads to the eradication of violent games and "strikes a significant blow" (a little RIAA there) in the war to "protect the children".

    Don't think for a moment these politicians (even the ones with kids) are doing this for the kids. They are doing this for brownie points. Yes there may be a precious few that actually want to do it the kids but I only say that because I don't claim to understand all motives of every politician.

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:44am

    How about banning guns or at least make it harder for nutters to obtain them.... Wouldn't that make more sense..!..

     

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  9.  
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    Barry, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:49am

    How about the news...

    What about network TV? Do they play a role in perpetuating the violence? Are sponsors going to start pulling ads from NBC for for putting this wierdo up on a pedestal?

     

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  10.  
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    Barry, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:49am

    How about the news...

    What about network TV? Do they play a role in perpetuating the violence? Are sponsors going to start pulling ads from NBC for for putting this wierdo up on a pedestal?

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:52am

    Re:

    No, it wouldnt make sense. Because nutters will STILL get them, and you would only have made it harder for the non-nutters to get them, thus decreasing the likelihood that anyone will have the capacity to actually fight back.

    There WILL be nutters. That is a given.
    They WILL get weapons. That is also a given.

    Remember, the nutters from 9/11 used freakin box cutters.

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:55am

    "thus decreasing the likelihood that anyone will have the capacity to actually fight back"

    Isn't that part of a cops job description...

    Fighting fire with fire is not always the answer...

     

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  13.  
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    Evil_Bastard, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 5:59am

    Trying to find an inanimate object to blame for the murders committed by a lunatic killer at VT is just plain retarded. That fucking loony slipped through ever crack we have, which is a real danger in a free and open society.

     

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  14.  
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    Instructor, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:10am

    Police job description

    The police in this case waited around for over an hour while over 30 people were murdered.

    Guess what? The police DO NOT HAVE ANY LEGAL DUTY TO PROTECT YOU.

    A single law-abiding citizen with a gun could have saved several lives by stopping this nutcase. But thanks to anti-gun laws, that was rendered impossible. This is one of many evil unintended consequences of misguided Liberalism. Virginia schools are places where an armed psychopath is guaranteed to find nobody who can shoot back.

    Guns are neither evil nor good. A gun in the hands of an evil person is a threat to everyone. A gun in the hands of a good person is only a threat to evil people.
    --
    Concealed Handgun License Courses in Plano, TX

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:11am

    No, it's not part of the cop job decription.

    Fact; there are not enough cops to protect all of us, all the time. Nor would we want there to be.

    Fact: in the case of rapid onset of violence like that at VT for the cops to of any real help, you must first survive the original attack and survive until the cops arrive, otherwise the only thing they can do for you is figure it out and clean up the mess.

    Sometimes fighting fire with fire is the ONLY answer..

    Unless of course, you enjoy being a victim.......

     

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  16.  
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    RandomThoughts, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:13am

    I would rather have Spitzer going after video games than Wall Street.

     

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  17.  
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    Yorker, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:16am

    Re: The People's Republic of NY

    Unfortunately they didn't...
    I for one think it would be better if NYC became very similar to Washington DC "the District of Colombia" and was separate from the rest of the state.
    I would even let them have the name New Yorkers

     

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  18.  
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    BTR1701, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:40am

    Re: Police protection

    > Isn't that part of a cops job description...

    No, not really. And more to the point, I don't want to be forced by law to have to rely on the police to protect me from people.

    The police are mostly reactive. They show up after a crime has been committed, gather the evidence and try and find the person who did it. They rarely are in a position to actively prevent a crime from occurring and when they do, it's usually due to sheer luck.

    Perhaps you are content with relying on the government for your protection but I'm not and when I hear the downstairs window break in the middle of the night, I don't want my only option to be dialing 911 and hoping like hell the cops get to me before the intruder does.

     

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  19.  
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    RandomThoughts, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:43am

    And a gun in the hand of an idiot (even if they are a good person) is dangerous to the owner and anyone around them.

    Famous last words of an idiot "Hey, watch this"

     

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  20.  
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    dataGuy, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:49am

    Re: Wait you have the wrong idea

    Al, I think you are exactly right. My proposed solution is to require that all laws have an expiration date. That way the "law makers" spend most of their time renewing old laws (hopefully only the useful ones) instead of making up more and more new regulations.

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:50am

    Re:

    Replace "gun" with "car", and your argument is exactly the same.

    You have just advocated delimiting liberties by intelligence quotient. good job, genius,

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Yet Another anonymous coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 6:53am

    An even more cynical idea

    I wonder if the Gov of NY was influenced by lobbyist that are funded by the lawyers that would profit from the inevitable lawsuit? This would be a great scheme, go from state to state getting rich...

     

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  23.  
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    Wizard Prang, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 7:01am

    The evidence would suggest...

    ...otherwise.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    Casper, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 7:16am

    Re: by Anonymous Coward

    "'thus decreasing the likelihood that anyone will have the capacity to actually fight back'

    Isn't that part of a cops job description...

    Fighting fire with fire is not always the answer.."

    I don't know what planet your on, but here on earth that is very often the answer... both figuratively and literally.

    The police officers job is to respond after a problem has occurred, sort it out, and contain it. No where in there are they actually preventing the problem from happening other then with their presence and prior removal of problem persons. If a person walks into your building with a gun, it is between you and him. The cops will be there after the calls go out to come sort it out and contain the problem... but you will already be dead.

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 7:24am

    At this point I'm actually starting to believe this is a money making scam to keep lawmakers, courts and the legal profession "busy" in order for them to "justify" the money they earn/rake in. I was reading this article and I couldn't help thinking this story was beginning to sound more and more like a racketeering scam to me. Can RICO laws be applied to the government?

     

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  26.  
    identicon
    Apennismightier, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 7:46am

    Retards

    If they honestly think video games are the cause and that someone is insane enough to be influenced by well made pixels gunning down a bunch of other well made pixels that look like hookers/gangsters/whoever, then maybe it's someone else's fault that the person who can be influenced by video games hasn't been put away for being a retard or a nut in the first place.

    If these legislators had actually played any of the games they are trying to ban, they'd realize how fun it is and how stupid they are being. I mean what Senator wouldn't love to run over the hooker he F-ed last night who could potentially be a liability to the advancement of his career? With games like GTA, it's every federal official's dream come true.

    Lastly, why does everyone forget that there are already age restrictions and ratings put in place on these video games. If a mother is stupid enough to buy her 6 year old a game that clearly has the giant M for mature audiences rating on the box, then it's just bad parenting, not the developer's faults.

    It's not the fault of the vendor who sells it to them either. Almost every nerd who works at Toy's R Us or EB Games could care less about some 12 year old buying a game. It's what you get when you pay workers just above minimum wage. When you walk up the counter to purchase it, almost every time the clerk tells you how awesome the game is and how much fun you're gonna have and that he's a level 70 or something...

     

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  27.  
    identicon
    April, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 8:00am

    Re: Stupid Law Makers

    While you have a point, let me remind you that making it illegal for kids to smoke or drink doesn't stop them. Advertising to their age group & following their parents' examples are the main things here. If we think minors shouldn't be playing these games, we need to step up & do more than just make it illegal.

     

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  28.  
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    md10024, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 8:45am

    To those that would deny NY the right to legislate gun laws that it sees fit, I ask... "whatever happened to local control and states rights? " Let the Texans carry whatever concealed weapons they need in TX, but bring them to NY and face 3 years mandatory jail time.

     

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  29.  
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    Sanguine Dream, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 8:48am

    Re: Re: Wait you have the wrong idea

    That would be great if the law makers would actually stop and think about the laws as they come up for renewal (which I'm guessing is why you mentioned this idea).

    But with so many vacations, golf trips, and dinners how can those poor law makers be expected to keep up with the laws the sign into effect?

     

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  30.  
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    Nhosc, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 8:57am

    Re: [states rights]

    Why not go ahead and let them legislate anything they want to, e.g., free speech. The term "F*** You" is hardly ever spoken in polite society in Texas, but it's practically the state slogan of NY.

    Just start knocking down that pesky Bill of Rights one by one, starting with the those that are the biggest threat to corrupt politicians. Let's see,...

    II
    I
    V
    IV
    etc.

     

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  31.  
    identicon
    Jason, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 8:59am

    Re: Stupid Law Makers

    Hmm maybe parents should be more aware of what there kids are doing instead of trying to slap a law on everything? Maybe they should just have taken you or your kids away and let them raised by the government and see how you trun out.

     

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  32.  
    identicon
    Dave, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 9:30am

    Re: Police job description

    A single law-abiding citizen with a gun could have saved several lives by stopping this nutcase. But thanks to anti-gun laws, that was rendered impossible. I'm not sure where you've been, but the one piece of legislation we ever had (which would have stopped this kid from getting those weapons) expired on Dickwad Bush's desk about 4 or 5 years ago. You can go out and buy a semi-automatic weapon at a local store if you want. Sure, you have to pass a background check ... but if you think that's violating the constitution, go start your own country.

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 9:44am

    Re: Police job description

    oh yes, because as we know, there are sooooo many anti-gun laws around

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    Brian, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:01am

    Spitzer

    Is there no longer a requirement to have intelligence when applying for a public service job?
    I am getting a migraine reading of our elected official's public displays of ignorance.

     

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  35.  
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    theOngman, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:03am

    Now listen...

    If they didn't waste our time and money, they wouldn't be politicians now would they =]

     

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  36.  
    identicon
    Sean, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:06am

    "You can go out and buy a semi-automatic weapon at a local store if you want. Sure, you have to pass a background check ..."

    Then to pass the background check you should have to be a natural born citizen

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:23am

    Re:

    Because it's already hard enough for law-abiding citizens to get guns in NY. Sure, you can buy a rifle or shotgun and wait a few days to get it, but a handgun to carry with you for protection? Forget it! It'll take 6 months to a year to get a CCW permit IF they even qualify you. And even then it may only allow you to transport said handgun to/from a shooting range. And yet some "nutter" as you say can buy one off the street illegally. Imagine if one person in VA had a CCW, was carrying, and could've stopped him.....

    I live in NY and we don't need any more retarded laws. We have enough of them already.

    Maybe parents should actually do their jobs and we could avoid tragedies like that.

     

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  38.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:23am

    Re:

    Because it's already hard enough for law-abiding citizens to get guns in NY. Sure, you can buy a rifle or shotgun and wait a few days to get it, but a handgun to carry with you for protection? Forget it! It'll take 6 months to a year to get a CCW permit IF they even qualify you. And even then it may only allow you to transport said handgun to/from a shooting range. And yet some "nutter" as you say can buy one off the street illegally. Imagine if one person in VA had a CCW, was carrying, and could've stopped him.....

    I live in NY and we don't need any more retarded laws. We have enough of them already.

    Maybe parents should actually do their jobs and we could avoid tragedies like that.

     

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  39.  
    identicon
    Gary, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: Stupid Law Makers

    Very well said.

    Kids are already violent and therefore like violent games. You can't blame anyone for making games that SELL because there is already a huge market for violence. Why penalize the software company by making violent games illegal??? Oh , i have an idea... how about we find out why some kids are violent in the first place? I promise you that it's not because of video games.

     

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  40.  
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    Anon, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:44am

    Re: Re: Stupid Law Makers

    Well stated.

    When i was 5-6 years old I wasn't allowed to have any toy guns and definatly no violent video games. What do you think i did? I found sticks and pretended they were weapons. I turned them into guns and swords. This is normal for 6 year old boys.

    If i had taken my pretend sword and hit another kid in the head and watched him cry with no remorse... NOW you have a violent situation that needs some serious attention.

    You simply cannot stop something by making it illegal. Get to the source of the anger among children and teach them to deal with this anger in a non-violent way.

     

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  41.  
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    Anonymous Hero, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:55am

    Perhaps there needs to be a criminal penalty for politicians that vote for obviously unconstitutional laws. Maybe willful subversion of the constitution should be considered a form of treason.

     

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  42.  
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    The infamous Joe, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 12:51pm

    Wild Wild Virginia.

    Sure, one student with a gun could have stopped it, but let's say from the first shooting to the second shooting several gun-toting students got the email that there was a shooter on campus, and independently went out in search of the shooter.

    Then, my friends, you have a bunch of kids with guns independently looking for a kid with a gun. I'm *sure* they'd call out, "Sir, are you a crazed shooter?" to each person they met with a gun.

    Or, more likely, they would shoot first and ask questions later.

    Please explain to me how this would be a good idea.

     

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  43.  
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    chucklebutte, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 1:21pm

    who cares?

    33 people died in VT shootings who cares? two days later 180 died in iraq car bombings who cares? the world is sending thier condolences to america over the VT shootings when was the last time you sent flowers to iraq? people wanna shift blame to video games or guns or movies or music, people cant accept the fact that laws religion and government play the most influential on messing up peoples lives. i agree with cho all these "rich" people need to pay america needs to learn a lesson we are a the worlds joke. our great country is the laughing stock of the world, we are a fat lazy and worthless culture filled with spoiled people with spoiled views. you wanna be safe? throw out the laws and get rid of the police state we live in. wanna feel free? abloish religion its a joke we all know it think im wrong? when was the last time you prayed to zeuss??? wanna be happy? over throw the government we need a good coup. last i checked it was for the people of the people by the people not by our elected officail, those people are put in office to voice the peoples opinion not thier own. greed will kill this weak patietic country i just hope im alive to see this place burn.... thank you mr bush and friends for making our country the way it is its prue hell we live in fear life is not wonderful anymore you bled us dry took our money our freedoms you took everything from us that made us who we are

     

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  44.  
    identicon
    Mischa, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 1:26pm

    Re: Re:

    Cars at least have a purpose other then killing.

     

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  45.  
    identicon
    dorpass, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 2:20pm

    Re: Police job description

    "Guns are neither evil nor good. A gun in the hands of an evil person is a threat to everyone. A gun in the hands of a good person is only a threat to evil people."

    Instructor, we have dorpus for stupid comments.

     

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  46.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 19th, 2007 @ 10:14pm

    Re: Wild Wild Virginia.

    Joe, you seem to have an imagination to rival that of the Virginia shooter.

     

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  47.  
    identicon
    dataGuy, Apr 20th, 2007 @ 8:23am

    Re: Re: Wild Wild Virginia.

    I think Joe has it correct. If you have a panic situation involving thousands of people. If even a small percentage of these "untrained" people are armed, it takes little imagination to picture many "friendly fire" injuries.

     

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  48.  
    identicon
    Mike, Apr 20th, 2007 @ 9:22am

    attention!

    He does this for attention no other reason so he can get on the talk shows and get his name out there because the next time he comes with something sensible we'll say remember that crazy guy who had that crazy idea? well guess what? he's at it again! I mean he must know better or he knows something we don't.

     

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  49.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 6th, 2007 @ 3:30pm

    Such inane banter...

    All of you are truly the epitome of this day and age. You have such low morality and overall common sense that those of you that have children will probably rent out a prostitue to them on their 16th birthday, or give them the keys to your car when you know they're going to a party rampent with drugs and alcohol, telling them to have fun. It's not about laws or the lack there of, it's about what you want in your children's lives. Yes, many people claiming to be parents use videogames as a baby-sitter, but ask yourselves if you us tv in the same fashion. Are you people so lax that instead of acting on your words, you merely spew them out of your slack-jawed mouths? Grow a spine and act. No one needs to be able to decapitate someone and have blood spurt from their body like a fountain, or be able to have sex with 10 prostitutes. This is not a progressive furture, it is digressive. I for one, especially in this crowd, believe that it is nice that someone still has a desire to fight against something that holds absolutely no social value.

     

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  50.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 7th, 2007 @ 1:52pm

    Just as a point of reference, i think it's funny how if you do not list a name, Anonymous Coward appears. The true coward is the person that needs to hurl insults to coax someone to reveal themselves

     

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  51.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 22nd, 2007 @ 9:59pm

    "Then, my friends, you have a bunch of kids with guns independently looking for a kid with a gun. I'm *sure* they'd call out, "Sir, are you a crazed shooter?" to each person they met with a gun."

    A couple of problems with this:
    1. Virtually all public places forbid people, even with a C&C to openly carry a weapon. The gun would have to be concealed.
    2. A student would have to be a complete moron to go looking for trouble. Heck even the police who are paid to do this kind of stuff stayed back.
    3. It really isn't that hard to tell the difference between someone genuinely wanting to hurt you and a person just defending himself.

    The chances of what you imagine happening are pretty slim.

     

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  52.  
    identicon
    Enrico Suarve, May 23rd, 2007 @ 1:43am

    Re:

    1. Virtually all public places forbid people, even with a C&C to openly carry a weapon. The gun would have to be concealed. And obviously crazed shooters and shit-scared vigilantes would obey this law to the letter

    2. A student would have to be a complete moron to go looking for trouble. Heck even the police who are paid to do this kind of stuff stayed back. Yeah but the original point was that one student with a gun could have prevented the massacre, not his theoretical mental capability

    3. It really isn't that hard to tell the difference between someone genuinely wanting to hurt you and a person just defending himself. You obviously have lots of experience of this to have such a firm opinion. Now explain friendly fire incidents in a professional army, and why so many tax dollars are apparently wasted training SWAT teams on how to enter buildings without tagging each other?

    My point I guess is that you rather naively seem to think that a rag tag army of vigilantes is the solution to problems like this, when last time I checked most police forces have highly trained SWAT teams, the FBI have HRT, and *still* they have the occasional loss of an officer and accidental shooting of a civilian

    I just can't help thinking that taking out crazed gunmen might be a little harder than you give credit

     

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