Monday, October 27, 2008

Don't Do This

Who the fuck lets an 8 year-old fire an Uzi?
WESTFIELD, Massachusetts (AP) -- An 8-year-old boy died after accidentally shooting himself in the head while firing an Uzi submachine gun under adult supervision at a gun fair.

The boy lost control of the weapon while firing it Sunday at the Machine Gun Shoot and Firearms Expo at the Westfield Sportsman's Club, Police Lt. Lawrence Valliere said.

The boy was with a certified instructor and "was shooting the weapon down range when the force of the weapon made it travel up and back toward his head, where he suffered the injury," a police statement said. Police called it a "self-inflicted accidental shooting."

Putting the "nut" in gun nut.

32 comments:

Gish said...

Who lets children into a swimming pool or even the bath tub where more children die every by drowning year than from all guns?

JeromeProphet said...

What's your point Gish?

geek_guy said...

I think Gish want us not to take baths. That's so French!

JLo said...

When bathtubs are outlawed, only clean outlaws will own bathtubs.

Bathtubs don't clean people, only people clean people. Wait, what?

Gish said...

My point was that a pool is far more likely to kill your child than a gun. Even with adult supervision, children die. So why the 'nut' reference? The adult did not leave the weapon out unattended. The adult did not hand it off to the child out tell them to go out and play. The adult allowed the child to fire the weapon under controlled circumstances and an accident happened.

An 8-year old can handle an uzi and its recoil. If you don't believe me then look to Africa where you have kids the same age handling Russian assault rifles firing a caliber far more powerful. This adult has probably fired weapons in the same circumstances before and knew the child could handle the weapon in question.

This was a freak accident that is probably millions of times more uncommon than swimming pool or bath tub deaths yet that adult is a 'nut' and not any adult that puts a pool in their backyard. I had a friend that drowned in a pool at a get together in full view of his peers and adults. So maybe the question should be 'Who the fuck puts a pool in their back yard'?

Dave said...

Gish your argument is totally ridiculous. In fact, I thought you were trying to be funny. If 8 year-olds (or younger) used Uzis as frequently as swimming pools, A LOT more of them would be hurt. Very stupid comparison.

Dave said...

And the Nut part comes from people who think guns are so fabulous that they absolutely must have their young children firing Uzis. That IS nuts.

nancy said...

Gish

"This adult has probably fired weapons in the same circumstances before and knew the child could handle the weapon in question"

Tragically untrue.

rickmonday said...

Dave,

Gish's argument isnt as nutty as you think it is. There are a hell of a lot more guns than swimming pools and yet there are many more drowning per year than child deaths from the use of guns.

Here is just one study I found:

"Dr. Kleck further mentions, "The risk of being a victim of a fatal gun accident can be better appreciated if it is compared to a more familiar risk...Each year about five hundred children under the age of five accidentally drown in residential swimming pools, compared to about forty killed in gun accidents, despite the fact that there are only about five million households with swimming pools, compared to at least 43 million with guns. Thus, based on owning households, the risk of a fatal accident among small children is over one hundred times higher for swimming pools than for guns." (p 296)"

http://www.guncite.com/gun_control_gcgvacci.html

Dave said...

OK, I’m convinced. I’m getting an Uzi for my kid. Totally sane! Amazing what you guys can talk yourselves into.

Dave said...

I saw a study somewhere that reported NO children were killed by nuclear weapons in the last 60 years! Nukes are safer than bicycles! Therefore, using the logic of this comment thread, get rid of that DANGEROUS bike and get you kid some fissionable material!

rickmonday said...

Dave,

The point is that used properly guns are not any more dangerous than many other things used in daily life.

This was a very sad situation but it was in a controlled environment and an accident happened. Accidents happen every day and people die from them.

To label someone as a nut because they allowed their kid to shoot an uzi in a controlled environment is unfair. It would also be unfair to ban all bikes if some kid fell off of one and hit his head while wearing a helmet and die.

Dave said...

You really can’t see the difference between shooting a real gun and riding a bike? Sad. Yes, you are nuts if you let your kid fire Uzis under any circumstances. I stand by my opinion. There is nothing “unfair” about it. You may disagree but it’s a fair assessment.

Gish said...

It is hardly a fair assessment. Please provide some stats or any stats for that matter.

CDC reports that 6 people drown in pools in the U.S. Every day with many of these being at facilities with lifeguards.

Most drownings for children under the age of 15 years occur in pools, tubs, or other non-natural bodies of water.

In 2005, of children 0-19 173/81,690,257 were injured and killed by firearms.

In 2005, of children 0-19 1,120/81,690,257 drowned (as in died) not including injuries which are 5 times more prevalent.

So there you have it. Firearms are 1/10th as likely to kill your child (assuming all the firearms statistic was deaths which it wasn't). Maybe that gun owner wasn't a 'nut' but someone who owns a pool or a tub or takes their kids swimming, boating, canoeing or any other water activity is.

http://webapp.cdc.gov/sasweb/ncipc/mortrate10_sy.html

You have a right to your opinion 'fair' or not but back it up. Otherwise it is nothing more than your opinion. I read the article and it doesn't state how much training, general or specific experience that this child had. We know very little about the case other than the most basic of bits. I would call shenanigans as to making a blanket statement but it is your right.

Dave said...

Yes, it’s my opinion. So what? I never said it was anything more. Just like it’s your fucking nutty opinion that its better to give a child a gun than a pool. Whatever. You guys are comparing apples and oranges but you are entitled to do so.

Gish said...

Sorry to have pissed you off if I did so. Apparently I just feel strongly in the other direction. For the record, I like pools and don't really worry about them. Just like I don't worry about guns in controlled situations or children riding bicycles.

Dave said...

Here’s a statistic. An 8 year old boy is dead because he was allowed to use an Uzi. Now, based on that statistic, was it a good idea to have allowed him to use it? NO! That was the point of the post. End of story.

JLo said...

Sometimes I wonder if you do not expect people to disagree with you on your blog? Calling people nutty and their opinions nutty is really no way to counter a cogent argument, but maybe you simply don't care. And quite honestly, I don't see anywhere that gish actually "believes" it's better to give a child a gun than a pool; he was simply using statistical information to back up what he said. I think it's somewhat disingenous to bring up a volatile subject and act surprised that people actually have strong feelings about this subject. I've been in blogging debates where people typically just yell at each other and call names. It's nice to see people actually trying to develop arguments and providing....facts. Honestly, is it such a bad thing to have a debate like this? Perhaps this is not your intent, but this is the price you pay for allowing comments.

JLo said...

And just so I'm clear: I think this whole event with the boy is very sad. And I think any child drowning is also very sad as well. Not being snarky, being serious.

Dave said...

Oh J-Lo, you just want everyone to get along. Keep wishing but it ain’t gonna happen. At least not in the blogosphere.

A few things in my defense though:

Disagree with me all you want but using bogus comparisons and I’m going to call you on it. I honestly think it is nutty to think that it’s OK to let an 8 year old use an Uzi. I really, really do. Can I prove my opinion statistically? No. But I’m not going to resort to bogus apples and oranges statistics to somehow justify my position either. The stats they cite are ridiculous in this situation and I have every right to say so. And I will say so, thank you.

No one is required to comment here. If anyone feels abused by the word "nutty", they can take their hurt feelings elsewhere. Or not.

rickmonday said...

I think Dave's blog and the arguments put forth are a microcosm of the whole gun issue.

Guns are dangerous. They are designed to kill. They are not a toy and when not treated properly people die. Therefore it is easy to immediately jump to the conclusion that guns should be banned or some kids should not be allowed to handle them.

However, contrary to initial expectations, guns when used in the correct manner save lives and deter crime. There are many more accidental deaths caused by everyday things such as swimming pools, bikes, etc..than by guns. The facts, not feelings, back this statement.

When I first read the headline about the boy who shot the uzi, my initial reaction was the boy's parents were idiots or nuts. However, once I find out that he shot the gun in a controlled environment, I chalked it up to a very unfortunate accident.

Dave is correct, I think, in labeling someone as a "nut" if they dont treat guns in a safe and respectful manner. In my book, that means leaving loaded guns lying around the house, pointing supposedly unloaded guns at people, keeping your finger on the trigger while carrying it,not properly storing it etc..

But I disagree, if that is Dave's intention, will calling someone a gun nut if they like to hunt or trap shoot or target practice with pistols, uzi's, or shotguns.

It is a sad day when even one person dies from a gun. The only way to reduce gun accidents is through education. I have made this point before but we have drivers education in high school and driving is not a right it is a privilege. The right to keep and bear arms is a right, although just like free speech there are some restrictions on it, but in general you have a right to own a gun. And yet, most schools that I am aware of do not offer anything at all when it comes to gun safety. I believe a gun safety class should be offered in the high schools. I think then you will see a drop in gun accidents.

Will said...

The gun lobby is good at citing all kinds of irrelevant statistics to back up their argument. If you really want to make a fair comparison you need a statistic about the number of injuries and fatalities compared to the number of hours at play. On average, how many of hours of children playing in a pool will pass before a child dies? How many hours of a child playing with a gun passes before one dies? Call it an average FPH (Fatalities Per Hour) for any given activity. Comparing the two is the only way to get a relevant statistical number. Of course more kids die in pools each year because lots of parents let their kids play in a pool but very few are nutty enough to let their kids play with a gun. But, I bet the FPH would tell us which activity is really more dangerous.

Gish said...

Cute term, Will. 'Playing' with a gun. You show your bias and it is pretty weak. Responsible parents don't let children 'play' with a gun. They may teach them to enjoy shooting and it is in controlled environments where safety is paramount. When that safety comes even close to being violated then the experience is over and you go home to practice more safety. Are there irresponsible gunowner parents. Sure but then they are irresponsible parents regardless.

If you also don't like my statistics and call them irrelevant then bless us with some relevant ones of your own. What I brought to the discussion was a comparison of two activities/hobbies/inanimate objects that I thought could be compared with regard to risking potentially fatal accidents in the name of enjoyment. Dave says I was comparing apples and oranges. True but the question was 'Which fruit is more dangerous'?

JLo said...

For the record, and this is an obvious attempt to bring levity, I wonder if there is a statistic on gun-related bathtub or pool deaths a year?

Gish said...

Nice try Jlo. I am sure levity went out the window long ago. Although in the spirit, the penultimate conjoinment would actually be Skeet Surfing. It's alright.

Dave said...

J-Lo,

Yes, 16 misguided peacemakers commenting on blogs from their bathtub get caught in a verbal crossfire every year. This proves that bathtub blogging is more dangerous than are Uzis. Or something. At least I used a statistic. That means I win, right?

JeromeProphet said...

The argument that an UZI is safer than a bathtub is insane.

The attempt to justify that argument with some invalid "statistical" comparison is one of the most pathetic and ignorant acts of discourse I've ever witnessed.

Parents do develop a sense of security with their children, and they let them bathe unsupervised, and some of those children do tragically, and accidentally, although rarely drown.

However, the number of unsupervised hours that children in the U.S. spend in bathtubs needs to be compared to the number of hours children are actively using loaded guns without supervision to make a comparison.

Additionally, while children, and society overall, gain tremendously due to increased sanitary conditions which saves hundreds of thousands of children's lives each year - through the use of bathing, guns have but one use, and one effect - to kill people.

Few use guns for subsistence hunting in the U.S., and almost none of those who do would use an UZI.

A parent may want to teach their children about using a rifle, and there's nothing wrong in that, but a machine gun in the hands of an eight year old is one thing, and one thing only - an extension of the father's penis. That boy died because his father is a fucking idiot.

JP

Gish said...

JP-

You don't know squat about how that father raised his child. You don't know squat about howw that event was run. You don't know squat about how much experience, how much maturity and how much capability that child had in this specific sitaution.

Everyone's pathetic fear and demonization of guns is apparent. Your opinions are unfounded and barely beyond emotional. It is little different the the right's demonisation of Obama because of his race, his origin, his 'connections'. Just like you showed on the Al-Jazeera video.

You are right that tubs are necessary but I only threw that in my snarky opening comment. Why don't you contrast that with swimming pools. We all know exactly how necessary those are, right?

Add something people other than your weak emotional arguments. Nobody seems to like my comparison of 2 recreational activities. Swimming in a pool or shooting at the range. Fine. Make your own comparison. Make anything that we could look at. It is pretty weak to throw out your names (nutty, nut, fucking idiot) without adding anything of substance. Now that is fucking pathetic. You are no better than the right wing nutjobs you deplore.

Gish said...

This is a comment from someone defending their judgement as a parent from some irrational fear someone else had. Not that I want to call someone a hypocrite for calling someone a nut before they found out what precautions they did take. I do enjoy the 'apples and oranges' comparison at the end. I mean pools and streets are the same, right?

"Before you start calling your friends irresponsible parents maybe you should find out what measures they DO take instead of judgmentally assuming the worst. For example, coincidentally (ahem)we have a pool in our backyard with no fence around the pool itself. However, we have door alarms on our back door and side door to the garage which we use during the four months the pool is open. Additionally, we provide good supervision and have had no problem in six years with kids and the pool. Even expensive fences around pools can be left open or climbed over

I must confess though that there is one danger that is year-round, and far more deadly to kids, just beyond our front door. And it’s not fenced off. Perhaps you’ve heard of streets. Wickedly dangerous.

March 03, 2008 1:26 PM"

JeromeProphet said...

Gish:

Please feel free to get the last comment in on this subject, as I can see that is very important to you.

You can substitute number of hours in pools if you want. Your "statistical" comparison shows either that you know nothing of statistics, or that you are being dishonest in your comparison.

Why not let three year olds handle machine guns?

Or even two year olds?

Toddlers can handle guns too!

And since we are no longer protecting children from the stupidity, and lack of concern on the part of their parents then why not slip hand guns into the baby's crib? Safer than leaving the kid in a pool?

"Hey, lookie there! Lookie at my two year old over there! That's a vintage Thompson submachine gun he's firing off! My boy's a man! A real man! Gonna take em to some whore's right after we get out of this gunshow as a reward for makin me so proud."

Gish said...

JP-

You spew a bunch of crap but predicate with a comment designed to prevent my response.

I was 6 paragraphs into correcting your idiocy and then realized you must be baiting me. Damn. You got me.

Dave-

I hope there are no hard feelings. I see you and I feel strongly in opposite directions on this. If we ever meet, I hope we can share some good beer and talk about things we do agree on. Based on the amount of time I have spent daily reading your blog, I imagine that is a far vaster amount of things.

Anonymous said...

I was raised being taught how to properly fire a gun. Not an uzi though. Practical rifles. Taught safety and technique.

I was also raised swimming. We swam at our lake lot growing up. I was taught safely.

I was always supervised at both acftivities.

I say the real stats must be compared with comparable circumstances (supervision and education). This, taken as a percentage of accidents over the number of hours spent on each activity.

My bet is the overall number of hours spent swimming is extremely high compared to the overall hours spent shooting Uzis. So, even if drowning deaths were higher, the percentage would still be lower.

That, as a math major, would be my opinion on the way to make a comparison and statistics just aren't there for that.

I'm with TEH on this though -it's sad and nuts.