Monday, 19 February 2018

Trying to Use the German Gun Control Template to the US

How would the German system work in the US case?

1.  You'd go to the county seat/court house and register yourself.  You'd fill out a sheet and they'd do a background check.  If you've ever been arrested for threats or such (even with no conviction), that little threat will hinder your application.  Threatened your ex-wife?  You won't pass.  Been convicted of some misdemeanor?  No big deal.  Convicted on some serious crime, especially with a weapon?  Well, your application won't pass. 

If you had 10,000 folks in one single country to push their application through....you can figure it'll take at least 12 months to get it validated.  My best guess is that out of a hundred folks....maybe ten to fifteen will fail at this level.

2.  Medical check.  Your doctor will look over your records and determine if you have a mental disease or use serious drugs.  Bi-polar?  Schizophrenic?  Cocaine-user?  Opioid-user?  You can figure your application will fail.  I would suggest that 20-percent of Americans as a minimum.

3.  You go and take a class on gun safety, and handling a weapon.  Figure two Saturdays.  The guys who accidentally fire their gun while in the class?  You can figure they won't pass. 

That would be it.  My humble guess is that out of a hundred folks who currently have guns....thirty-percent would not get the license.  Loss of the weapon?  That would be the harsh reality, and I doubt that guys would be willing to accept this new reality. 

Florida and the Remainder of the Year

For the remainder of 2018, here is how the school shooting plays out;

1.  The kid.  I'm guessing about 48 hours after the shooting....most of his drugs have worn off, and he's sitting in the jail without any gaming 'set'....maybe for the first time in ten years.  His reality is starting to return, and he is contemplating all the screw-ups.  On a suicide watch?  Yeah, probably.  Zero chance he'll ever walk free, and about a 50-percent chance for a death sentence.  He probably doesn't remember much and says he was in a daze.

2.  The schools.  Well, for the remainder of this school-year, it'll be a hyped-up mess....sixty-percent of kids all anti-gun and social-meddling this to the ninth degree.  The opposite group....the kids who always oppose stuff, and the pro-gun kids....will be picked on.  With two weeks, some pro-gun parents will demand face-to-face teacher meetings and principal meetings.  Some teachers will bluntly push back and say they are anti-gun teachers.  This will set off a new mess that the school boards can't handle.  Ability to accomplish anything for classes?  No, don't go and anticipate anything getting done for the next four months.  Some teachers will be on a list to fire (the pro-gun folks as well as the anti-gun folks).  Various fights will occur and blame will be tossed onto both groups.

3.  The 17 House members from Florida who are Republican?  They run in November's election and they are screwed.  The kids will go against them and the wave will be very negative.  At least half of these seats are now permanently lost.

4.  Adjacent states?  Social media will carry this anti-gun wave across to other states and trigger in-house fights....the pro-crowd versus the anti-crowd.

When You Don't Have School Discipline

As a kid in rural Alabama, I don't remember the topic of suspending or dismissing a kid from school until probably the 10th grade.  To be honest, you just didn't have 'drama-types' who needed the suspensions. 

With all of this Florida-shooting hype, someone sat down and dug out the Broward County School Discipline Agreement

It's an odd piece...signed by local city/county judges, the state attorney general, and the Sheriff.  The school system has to comply with this local document. 

So in the midst of this agreement, there is a list of things that you will NOT be suspended or expelled upon....if they were to occur.  In these cases, you get a warning, a lecture, and possibly detention (meaning a couple of hours per week in study hall).

The list: all student misbehavior, disrupting or interfering with class or school functions, fighting in hallways or classrooms, theft of less than $300, vandalism (if less than $1,000), disorderly conduct (against other students, or teachers),  trespassing, criminal mischief (unclear what the heck this means), gambling, loitering, prowling, harassment, alcohol use or drunkenness, any possession of  Cannabis or drug paraphernalia, threats, obstructing justice with or without violence.

In most companies, the hint of any of these acts....would be enough for HR to bring you in and fire you on the spot. 

In the school?  Totally acceptable.  The worse that you might get is extra study hall. You could show up daily after consuming half-a-bottle of whiskey....no problem.  You could start a fight every other day.....no problem.  You could disrupt your science class daily....no problem. 

So I just look at this accepted behavior deal and can judge the school system as a failure.  The fact that judges and the sheriff signed off on it?  They are just as much part of the failed system.  They are themselves a failure.

You can draw up a long list of failures that brought this idiot kid to the event of last week.  The FBI failed.  The local cops failed.  The school discipline failed.


Sunday, 18 February 2018

Just Ten Suggestions

After reading a fair bit over mass shootings and pondering over things....I have ten suggestions:

1.  Dump all disciplinary issues that pop up in any school over to the cops and the local judge.  Let the parents, and the trouble-making kids, get used to direct court action and the police.  Let teachers do the only thing they should be doing...teach.

2.  Got any kid who displays attitude problems in school or can't respect teachers or fellow-students?  Bring them in for Saturday sand-bagging.  Give them the job of filling five-hundred sandbags.  You screw up a second time?  One-thousand sandbags.  You screw up a third time? Two-thousand sandbags.

3.  Raise the gun purchase age to 21, along with the voting age, the age for buying alcohol, the age for getting a credit card, and the age to buy cigarettes.   You want to join the military and are still under 21?  Go get your parent's signature. 

4.  You make any threat to harm anyone....cops get called and they are mandated to arrest you and hold you for a minimum of forty-eight hours.  Judges get called and you have to face some court activity before you get a chance to go back to school.

5.  Give the school system an opportunity to let kids test out, and leave by the end of the 10th grade. 

6.  Unannounced drug tests on students and teachers....minimum of two tests per year.  You fail as a student, you get two weeks of suspension.  As a teacher, you get a month off without pay.

7.  Cellphones forbidden in all schools. 

8.  Showing disciplinary issues?  Let the judge retain your social media account and prevent your use of any social media for 90 days.

9.  Fights at school?  Call the cops, let them sort it out.

10.  Fights on a bus?  Call the cops and let them sort it out.

Saturday, 17 February 2018

The 21 Discussion

A senator today hyped up the idea of gun purchases having an age limit across the entire US of 21 years old.  I sat and pondered upon this idea.

First, sure....this would be a mighty fine law.  So once you have some Baltimore gang member.....18....with a pistol....are you willing to send the kid off to three years of prison?  If you did make this a law....what's the jail-time?  Six months?  A year?  Three years?

Second, if Junior to go hunting this weekend (Junior is 16)....there's no problem with him borrowing dad's hunting gun....right?

Third, if you had five or six attacks where 19-year old Junior used a professional bow-set....would limit those purchases as well?

Personally, this sounds so swell....that I'd go and add in....no beer or booze sales until 21, no military participation until 21 (unless your parents sign off).....no credit cards or home loans until 21.....a maximum limit on college loans of $10,000 a year until you turn 21...and no voting until you are 21. I doubt if this Democratic Senator would go along with this idea of mine though. 

If you added up all the mass killings in the past forty years....how many would have this simple law prevented?  Five?  Maybe ten?  Would not have prevented the Vegas shooting.

If I were Trump....I'd go and wretchet up this idea and suggest everything goes to age 21....no credit cards, no booze, no cigarettes, no guns, and no voting.  Very quickly.....this idea will disappear. 

The Medicated Society

Last night I spent a fair amount of time reading over statistics.

Roughly twenty-six million Americans (around 9-percent of the population) use illegal drugs (meth, crack, weed, etc).

Roughly one out of every six Americans use some legal mood-changing drugs or antidepressants.  The doctors say it's fine....it passed all the tests, and you can have them. 

If you figure up the two groups, you can assume that in a normal day of bumping into one-hundred people....at least thirty of them have medication in their system, or they've doped up in the past couple of days. 

It's a high number, if you think about it.

The real problem though...is that you tend to only think of this group as adults.  So if you were to look around the local school with 500 kids between the ages of ten and eighteen....would it bother you if sixty of them are on some type of antidepressant or mood-changing drug?  If you were a teacher and came to realize in this group of twenty-two students in your room....there two kids contemplating suicide because of the antidepressants, and at least one kid who wanted to terminate some 'mortal-enemy' in the class for stealing their pencil.....would it bother you?

If you were the school bus driver, and had forty-two kids to pick up or deliver home, and eight of those kids were potentially on the borderline of harming themselves or other kids....would it bother you?

It is a heavily medicated society...something that you didn't really have to face in the 1930s or the 1960s. 

So this brings me to this observation.....where exactly will this lead onto? 

Topic of Mass Killings

I sat and spent a fair amount of time on a piece of a 2015 study by Michael F. Stone, a PhD psychoanalyst from New York.  He sat down and spent a fair amount of time looking at mass killings.

For his study, he ended picking 235 mass events (only from the US), from the period of 1913 to 2015.  My guess is that he picked events which had a fair amount of written material, but it's unclear how the 235 were really picked.

One might also note that he didn't go out and interview witnesses but just relied upon the newspapers and books written.

The FBI will tell you that roughly one-thousand mass murders occurred between 1900 and 1999.  Since they didn't come along until the 1930s.....I might go and question how they arrived at their number but I'm willing to accept some basis to start this discussion from.

In most of these 235 events....Stone comes to a clearly defined end-result....at least 228 of these were folks who had some type of mental illness, psychosis, schizophrenia, or bipolar.

Basically....well over 95-percent fit into his profile of people who weren't capable of grasping the event or what they were doing.

The Vegas shooter?  Well....if you go by what the girlfriend said....he was showing signs of schizophrenia.  The doctor giving him mood-altering drugs?  Nothing in terms of a pubic statement but the fact that the prescription started about a hundred days prior to the event....would lead you to some view of the serious nature of his mental condition.

This kid in Florida?  Based on various descriptions, I'd take a guess he was on medication and probably bi-polar.

The problem here?  Let's say you opened up the books and admitted out of the past twenty years....98-percent of all mass murders were triggered by mental illness.  What exactly are you willing to do?  Would you be willing to confirm six-hundred people per week from across the US to a permanent and ever-lasting mental institute?  I doubt it. 

If they wanted to kill a mass group and didn't get a gun?  Well....you'd go and explore various other ways from toxic gas, to poison. 

The 9-11 crew?  I think if you really dug into their mental side....most would be defined as having some form of mental illness. 

We've got a problem but it's clearly not going to be solved by discussing gun-control.  The study by Stone?  I'd highly recommend it but it's pretty long.