Shooting behind Golden Wall

Last night, after putting Clementine to bed, I decided to walk up Cross Street to the Golden Wall, to get some food for Linette and me. As I approached their parking lot, I noticed that the entire property next door had been surrounded in yellow crime scene tape. I walked out into the street to avoid it, and, when I got the Golden Wall, I asked the two young women behind the counter what had happened. They said that they’d heard shots. They said, from what they’d heard, however, no one was hurt. Well, it seems as though that wasn’t quite the case. The following comes from the Ypsi Citizen:

…The report said the victim, a 32-year-old Ypsilanti resident, suffered a gunshot wound to his left arm and a flesh wound to the left side of his stomach area. He was treated at St. Joseph Hospital and later released…

A 17 year old Ypsilnati man has been arrested for the shooting, which apparently followed an altercation.

Speaking of the Ypsi Citizen, its editors are going to be at the Corner Brewery today at 5:00 to discuss the future of their enterprise. Here’s a clip from the calendar listing.

The editors of the Ypsilanti Citizen invite the community to the Corner Brewery to discuss issues, receive feedback and socialize with residents. We are interested in knowing your opinions about our service over the past several months, what you have come to expect and appreciate, where you would like to see us go and what the recent closure of the Ann Arbor News means for the Ypsilanti Community. If you have something to say or a question to ask come out any time, we will be here.

And, for what it’s worth, the Golden Wall has really great fake chicken, in case you’re ever in the mood, and they’re really nice people.


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  1. Loquoulm
    Posted April 4, 2009 at 11:35 pm | Permalink

    They are nice at the Golden Wall, but what happened to that friendly red bearded young man who used to bring me rice? I’d finger him as suspect number one.

  2. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 12:21 am | Permalink

    Goes to show that if you’re legally able to get a concealed weapons permit, you should do so; learn how to use a pistol, and carry it with you, to defend yourself and others from violent aggression. Or you can open-carry a pistol without any permit. Cause some 17 year old kids who think it’s okay to end arguments by shooting someone really don’t give a damn about gun control laws, or your life.

  3. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 12:29 am | Permalink

    17 year olds are legally forbidden from buying or concealed-carrying a pistol, just to clarify. Guess he didn’t get the memo.

  4. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    “Goes to show that if you’re legally able to get a concealed weapons permit, you should do so; learn how to use a pistol, and carry it with you, to defend yourself and others from violent aggression.”

    I’d rather we try to minimize the number of bullets flying around. My wife woke me up this morning to tell me a guy was at our front door–he had just backed his van into my car. My blinker is broken, along with some plastic bits. Do I really want that guy carrying around a gun so that he can “defend” himself and others and me and my family? You say, “learn how to use a pistol,” and that should be mandatory. If these CCW permits are supposed to be for the purposes of engaging in shootouts with criminals, then carriers should go through the same training that police go through. They should be tested on their abilities (along with psychological testing that police have to go through).

    But even some cops are incompetent with guns, unfortunately. A stray bullet fired by a police officer trying to shoot a snake hit and killed a 5-year-old boy fishing at a nearby pond, officials said (,2933,292168,00.html). More training for cops, too!

    Training would be time-consuming and expensive. I don’t know how many citizens would be willing to go through it to get a CCW permit. But that’s what I would want in place.

  5. Posted April 5, 2009 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    There have been more occasions when I’m glad that I didn’t have a gun, than when I wish that I did.

  6. Posted April 5, 2009 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    Despite what the NRA will tell you, most of us will never need a weapon.

    However, for me personally, I’ve had guns pulled on me by people with and without licenses (I assume) on multiple occassions. Believe me, they don’t give you the time to pull out a weapon even if you had one.

  7. kristin
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    At my gun-loaded place of employment people always tell me that it would be different if gun control laws worked, but that they don’t, so the regulations only apply to the lawful types. I can’t remember what the following evidence is, but there are statistics about how guns used in violent crimes were never legal ever ever, or something like that. All I remember after the gun control conversations is that I’m tired and my confidence in gun control is shaken. Maybe they slip me a mickey. Better than an Uzi.

  8. Posted April 5, 2009 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    This is a rash generalization, but I often get the idea that NRA people would like gun control if it only applied to black people. I could be wrong, but it certainly is the impression I get.

  9. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

    the regulations only apply to the lawful types

    Exactly. The harder it is to be able to lawfully carry a gun to defend yourself from criminals, the fewer law abiding people will be able to defend themselves from criminals. Criminals do not have to get permits, or training, or anything else. They just buy a gun from their dealer and shove it in their pants. According to the BBC, handgun crimes are up 40% since England’s handgun ban. Gun control disarms the law abiding and emboldens criminals. It’s not just bumper sticker slogans, it’s true.

    Not to mention that infringing our right to own and carry arms is explicitly illegal. But nobody gives a shit about the highest law of the land anymore, apparently. We’ll accept any illegal tyranny as long as the liars we voted for scare us enough and tell us it’s for our own good.

  10. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    dude, I personally would like to see firing ranges and firearm training classes in inner city schools. Respect for firearms and firearm safety is best learned when mentored by adults who exhibit those same traits, and who don’t shame kids for their rightfully desiring to use firearms. That desire just needs to be channeled positively. Every person has the right to keep and bear arms, no matter what their color, creed, gender, or sexual orientation, because every person has an equal right to defend themselves from violent aggression, just like a raccoon or cop does.

  11. Posted April 5, 2009 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    That’s a stupid stat. It could be that because gun crimes were on the rise already, the government instituted the gun ban.

    That’s like saying that, if, in the middle of an epidemic, I implement a vaccination strategy and it only works for some cases and not others, that the vaccines are the cause of epidemic.

    My impression again, is that you don’t mind having guns in the hand of white people who believe in Jesus, but really don’t want black, poor and uneducated people to have them. As long as people of your ilk have guns, then you have power, and that makes you feel good.

    Personally, I view my my gun toting, permit carrying neighbors with extreme suspicion, that, when push comes to shove, they will exercise the threat of violence to get what they want.

  12. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    I’m not going to get in a troll fight with you, my friend.

  13. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    “The harder it is to be able to lawfully carry a gun to defend yourself from criminals, the fewer law abiding people will be able to defend themselves from criminals.”

    . . . and, perhaps, the fewer innocent people get caught in crossfire.

    “Not to mention that infringing our right to own and carry arms is explicitly illegal.”

    There is legitimate interpretation. Or do we have a right to carry nuclear bombs, too?

  14. Curt Waugh
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    BA, you entirely completely without doubt missed what happened in this shooting. And THAT is why people probably shouldn’t carry guns, for the most part. I’m not anti-gun ownership, but I’m anti cowboy. And you, sir, scare me with your attitude.

    Thus I quoth the Ypsi Citizen:
    Called to the 400 block of Ballard at 6:30 p.m., the report said, “Officers made contact with numerous witnesses that observed a group of subjects involved in an altercation.”

    This was an altercation that ESCALATED. That’s a very important concept here. Without a gun, this doesn’t escalate. With some training in how to be human beings, these people never get to this point. Yes, it sometimes happens anyway.

    But what happens when you lose it and reach for that oh-so-convenient gun instead of just walking away because you had your little feelings hurt? “Oh, that would never happen to me,” you might say. But if you arm millions of people, as I’m sure you would like, it damn well will happen. Many times.

    You can spew your platitudes, but I really don’t think you’ve thought through your position completely. Don’t we have civilian police forces for the very reason that it’s preferable that everybody NOT be armed? Sure, the police aren’t saints, but I’d rather have a lot of heavily trained, professional, armed non-saints than just random folks walking around un-ready to kill.

  15. Posted April 5, 2009 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I gotta admit that I feel more comfortable when fewer people have guns than when more people have guns. I agree that gun control doesnt work real well as far as I can tell. I have no problem with people having guns in their homes. I just wish there was some way to keep people from walking around armed.

  16. Posted April 5, 2009 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    Well, if I’m in any kind of trouble, the last people I want protecting me are yahoos with NRA stickers on the trucks.

    No thanks. I’ll take my chances on my own.

  17. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

    Curt, the point is that it’s already illegal for that kid to be carrying a handgun. Gun control laws didn’t work. This is so simple, only a genius can see it.

    I can read quite plainly that most people are coming at this policy not with reason or experience with firearms and firearm laws, but with their feelings, which are easily manipulated and by nature not rational.

    I used to get a lot madder and was more prone to escalating according to the situation before I started carrying a firearm and learning about self-defense laws. Now that I’m able to defend myself with deadly force, I see two categories of conflict: ones that morally and legally justify my killing someone, and ones that don’t. Unless someone is an imminant threat to my life or someone else’s life, I don’t care. If they are an imminant threat to my life or someone else’s life, I shoot to kill. There’s no room for stupid posturing shit or pride any more in my assessment of a conflict situation. I’ve gotten plenty mad at people since I started carrying, and drawing my gun never even occured to me. I speak from experience. The other gun owners I know who carry have similar experiences. You guys speak from ignorance. You don’t know shit about what you’re talking about, and my rights and life are more imortant that your feelings. When I told a cop who’s pulled me over that I have a CCW, he immediately knew I’m a good citizen, and almost treated me like a peer. You guys don’t know what you’re talking about at all, and as much as I’d like to deal patiently with your childlike opinions and gross misconceptions, people’s lives and civil rights are on the line on this issue.

  18. Posted April 5, 2009 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    I’ve owned guns, was raised in a house with guns and have not gone through this satori you imply. Mostly, I see people that own guns as being weak and afraid.

    I just don’t think I’m as paranoid or as angry as you are. My secret to not being angry, is uh… not being an angry asshole.

    It doesn’t take a false sense of power knowing that I can kill anyone I see to make me feel better.

  19. jorj
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    Feeling powerful by trying to provoke people to anger on a blog: my anti-gun.

  20. Curt Waugh
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    BA, you are just proving my point.

    1) I never said anything about gun control. And yet, your first statement to me is that I speak from ignorance about gun control. I was trying to make a point about teaching human beings to respect each other (that conflict resolution is about a million times more powerful than a handgun) and you go straight to your line in the sand. Sir, you are not a reasonable person and you should not carry a gun. You are one angry son of a bitch, as far as I can tell.

    2) Tell us right now how many times you have had to “shoot to kill”. Please enlighten us to your experience so that we may learn.

    Your statements are pure politics and have nothing to do with what I was saying. By the time bullets are flying, we are way past reason or humanity. You seem to make this point that, “When the shit hits the fan, I’m ready.” Well, the shit has never hit the fan in my life. Never even close. In fact, I’m not even sure I personally know anybody who either needed or would have benefited from carrying a handgun, but I sure as hell know a LOT of folks who could have used some lessons in civility. Please come down off your horse and realize that maybe your tough talk is a big part of the problem. “I dare you to mess with me because I might kill you” is not a basis for a healthy society.

  21. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

    Curt, you’re reading a lot of tough guy cowboy bravado and anger into my posts that just isn’t there.


    Cross reference

    “I never said anything about gun control.”


    “Without a gun, this doesn’t escalate.”

    “Don’t we have civilian police forces for the very reason that it’s preferable that everybody NOT be armed? Sure, the police aren’t saints, but I’d rather have a lot of heavily trained, professional, armed non-saints than just random folks walking around un-ready to kill.”


    “Sir, you are not a reasonable person and you should not carry a gun. “

    If that isn’t gun control, I’d like to know what is.

    As per your question, I have never had to shoot to kill anyone, thank God. Part of my fancy 1-day training to get the CCW (which you don’t need to open carry, FYI), though, is that you only pull out the gun if you intend to shoot someone, and you only shoot someone to kill them. And you only do that to save your own life or some other innocent person’s. Otherwise, you’re brandishing and/or illegaly discharging a firearm, and who knows what else depending on the situation. I have also never needed to use the fire extinguisher in my house, but I’d be stupid to not have one.

    My opinions are very well thought out and not at all based on politics, I assure you. My gun rights advocacy predated my political opinions by over two decades. I imagine this is why you’re so mad at me regarding this issue:

    “All morons hate it when you call them a moron.”

    J. D. Salinger

  22. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    “You guys speak from ignorance. You don’t know shit about what you’re talking about . . . You guys don’t know what you’re talking about at all . . .”

    Generalized assumptions? Or you know this for a fact? Have you quantified the experience of “you guys”? Or is your gun-slinger sense just tingling?

    “. . . people’s lives and civil rights are on the line on this issue.”

    Quick, get them some guns.

    BA (ha), I thought I made some valid points, but I don’t think you addressed them.

  23. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    Am I wrong? Do you have a lot of experience with firearms and firearm laws? I’m correctible if reality demands it.

  24. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

    If I knew a lot about fixing cars and a bunch of people started rattling off things that I knew were based on inexperience, I’d say the same thing.

  25. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

    As to your point, Dirtgrain, about the guy with the car, I have a few thoughts:

    1) His car is already a far more deadly weapon than a gun.

    2) He has already recieved extensive training regarding operating the car. Still he had an accident.

    3) Getting in an accident with a car, a far more deadly weapon than a gun, usually does not result in the driver losing his license forever, let alone me losing my car and license because of someone else’s misuse of their car. Most gun-control advocates follow the logic that because someone else committed a crime, the innocent should be deprived their rights or property (their firearms) without having committed a crime (without due process).

    4) Accidents happen with everything. More with cars than with guns.

    Also, most of you don’t seem to realize that you do have to go through some training to get a CCW. Hence my instantly knowing that you were ignorant of the process. Now you know.

  26. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    “. . . people’s lives and civil rights are on the line on this issue.”

    Quick, get them some guns.

    Tell that to her and her family, smartass.

  27. Posted April 5, 2009 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

    The difference between a car and a gun is that the car is designed to get a person from place to place, though accidients happen. A gun, however, is for one purpose: killing.

    What, do you live in Somalia? I’ve never needed a gun.

    Brack’s cock is so small, he has to make up for it with a piece of steel on his belt.

    Like I said, weak and afraid.

  28. kjc
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    “All morons hate it when you call them a moron.”

    J. D. Salinger

    I’ve noticed this same thing with know-it-alls.

  29. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 7:50 pm | Permalink

    I don’t hate it when you guys call me names, because they aren’t accurate, and it’s obvious you’re just lashing out from the pain of having your wrongness exposed by my rightness. Which is understandable.

    If you don’t like my defending my rights from your egotistical and delusery desires to control and curtail them based on ignorance, I suggest respecting them. Otherwise, you deserve and will recieve defensive behavior that might hurt your feelings by it’s accuracy.

  30. Posted April 5, 2009 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

  31. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

    That’s not a threat of violence, by the way. I mean with words. I know how quick gunophobes can jump to hysterical conclusions.

  32. EOS
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 8:32 pm | Permalink

    Our country became independent because citizens were armed. You need to understand that citizens must be armed, and what’s happened to citizens throughout the world and throughout history when they couldn’t defend themselves against tyrannical governments. The way to bring about a dictatorship or police state is to make sure the people are disarmed. Historically it happened in Turkey, China, Russia, Germany, Cambodia, Rwanda, Uganda, and even now in Darfur. Private gun ownership is a huge deterrence to invading and occupying forces.

    Individual gun ownership is an inalienable right to provide for the self-defense of law abiding citizens. You can hope and pray that local police will provide you with protection from gun-toting criminals, but there is no right to such protection. If you are a shooting victim, try suing the police for failing to provide protection, and see how far that gets you.

    If you fear guns or don’t have the proper training to safely use one, please don’t purchase a weapon. If you are emotionally unstable and think you might be tempted to use a weapon inappropriately in the heat of the moment, please don’t purchase a weapon. If there are persons in your household who might consider using a firearm to commit a violent crime, please don’t purchase a weapon. But be thankful that there are lots of Americans who are trained and capable – because your safety may someday depend on it.

  33. Posted April 5, 2009 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

    I can guarantee you that a bunch of yahoo’s in pickup trucks holding Glocks won’t be able to do shit if the military decides to throw the hammer down.

    I thought that the power of the political process was what kept us safe, not a bunch of right wing religious wackos with guns.

  34. EOS
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    Dude –

    Bet you would never have guessed that the North Vietnamese could have defended against the most powerful military force in history with punji sticks and old AK-47’s either.

  35. Posted April 5, 2009 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

    The North Vietnamese had nothing to lose.

  36. Posted April 5, 2009 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

    Point of order…. I’m the only one on this site allowed to imagine the cock size of those leaving comments and make statements about such musings.

  37. Patrick
    Posted April 5, 2009 at 11:58 pm | Permalink

    BA wrote, “When I told a cop who’s pulled me over that I have a CCW, he immediately knew I’m a good citizen, and almost treated me like a peer.”

    That must’ve been cool. Did the cop ask for your autograph, too?
    I would love to almost be treated like a peer by a cop.

  38. Patrick
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    By the way, I estimate my cock size as slightly below average.
    Actually, no, I measure it every couple of days. But it does look a little bigger when I am packing heat, though.

  39. Patrick
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 12:29 am | Permalink

    I just measured again. Just to be sure.

  40. Posted April 6, 2009 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    It’s sad to me that right wing, Christian America measures it’s country by it’s capacity to do violence and threaten each other than it’s capacity to do good and get along.

    Something tells me that Jesus wouldn’t carry a gun.

  41. Curt Waugh
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Patrick, you get an LOL for “Did the cop ask for your autograph, too?”

    BA, you are a dork for:
    “If they are an imminant threat to my life or someone else’s life, I shoot to kill.”

    Followed by:
    “I have never had to shoot to kill anyone, thank God.”

    So, you effin’ do it, dammit, except for the tiny little fact that you’ve never done it. Yippie kay yay, man! You are now downgraded to wannabe.

  42. Posted April 6, 2009 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Something tells me that he’d freeze up and cry.

  43. Burt Reynolds
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    If the choice presented itself, would anyone rather get stabbed than shot? Not me. Stabbing seems like it would hurt a hell of alot more. This has nothing to do with anything, its just a thought I’ve always had.

  44. Posted April 6, 2009 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Dang. I was going to run out and get some urban chickens just so I could come on here and brag about my cock size and now Mark says that only he is allowed to do that. I’ll just say that my cock would have been bigger than any cock before or since and if it got into a cock fight, no guns would be involved. Just sayin’

  45. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    Curt, if my house catches on fire, I run out of the house. My house has never caught on fire, so I guess I’m a house fire poser. You still have no idea what you’re talking about regarding either the law or my character. I’d apologize if it were my fault or problem. I will say I am sorry you’re acting like an ignorant jackass, and pouring on undeserved, inaccurate verbal abuse on me for no other reason that I am right and know what I’m talking about, and you are wrong and don’t know what you’re talking about. Most reasonable people would respond to such a situation by listening to the person who actually knows what he’s talking about and changing their minds to better conform to reality.

    The reason I brought up my experience with the cop was that previously, several years ago, I had been handcuffed for carrying a maglite even though I posed no threat to the trooper. This was before I had a ccw. So I assumed that when I was pulled over this time, the trooper would react in a threatened and cautious manner because he knew I had a gun. I was pleasantly surprised that he acted in a much more friendly relaxed manner, because he knew that I was a law abiding citizen or else I wouldn’t have gotten the license in the first place. To portray my cluing you in on the reality of gun ownership as it relates to police as an attempt to aggrandize myself is inaccurate. I’m just trying to inform you of what reality is like, based on actual experiences, rather than on feelings, ignorance, and imagination.

    I’ve also had a coworker who not only successfully shot and killed an armed assailant in Detroit who tried to kill him with a lead pipe, but whose friend successfully killed a serial rapist in Detroit and was thanked by the police who had been unable to catch him.

    We all know the pen is mightier than the sword. With only words, people can convince each other to do or think horrible things, to become terrorists, or kill millions of Jews, etc. Therefore, because people obviously can’t be trusted to only speak true and loving things all the time, we should require everyone to get licensed, trained, and registered in order to speak or write anything. They, of course, should pay for this training and licensing themselves. Even the slightest misuse of speech would result in jail time and the revocation of their license. The founders never envisioned people using technologically advanced telecommunications when they wrote the first ammendment. It’s just too dangerous to trust the common yahoo with the power to shoot off his mouth, potentially starting an argument that might escalate, or promoting an ideology others might disagree with. I’m not anti 1st Ammendment, I’m just pro common sense speech regulation. :|

  46. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    I’m in the market for a pistol that’s smaller than my penis. It’s not easy, let me tell you. But my poor tiny penis feels threatened by being in such close proximity to the ultra potent manhood symbolized by a large firearm, so the poor little guy just shoots right up into my body and disappears. I’d like to get a gun smaller than my penis, so that it will come out. Because if it doesn’t, it knows I will shove that tiny gun up in there and blow it’s damn head off, because there’s only one thing those craven dick heads understand.

  47. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    This accurate statement should also result in some undeserved derision towards yours truly:

    “Great spirits have always encountered opposition from mediocre minds. The mediocre mind is incapable of understanding the man who refuses to bow blindly to conventional prejudices and chooses instead to express his opinions courageously and honestly, bitches.” — Albert Einstein

  48. West Cross
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    Hmm, for some reason I had thought this thread might be about the actual event and how it relates to our town, but it seems it’s all about gun rights now.

    My two cents is that giving everyone guns will result in many more gun accidents, “heat of passion” type shootings (like this one) and plenty of more guns for criminals to steal. Guns are kind of expensive you know, and popular items for theft. I think you should be able to have a gun if you want one, but it should not be easy to get one and you shouldn’t expect it to solve your problems. If you are a good shot and quick you can shoot someone before they shoot you. If you aren’t you’ve just escilated the situation and will now be getting shot yourself.

    Also, I’ve always thought that getting shot would hurt more than being stabbed. More of a burning explosion feeling. Seems like a sharp knife would be cleaner.

  49. roots
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I actually wanted to comment on the event. I was disappointed today when my colleagues mentioned the incident at the lunch table (I don’t work in Ypsilanti).

    This event, coupled with the double muggings on the other side of campus this weekend, have fueled some new jokes amongst my peers.

    Ah, well.

  50. roots
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    And not that I think we can actually have a civil discussion about gun laws on this thread, but…

    Has anyone been reading/listening to news pieces on how U.S. gun laws have been affecting Mexico? I find it rather interesting…fairly depressing.

  51. roots
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    Also, I like that BA brought up the comparison to the 1st amendment. This addresses the issue of education. I wonder if it’s proven that those who are trained to exercise the power of the mighty pen resort to haphazard gun violence less frequently.

  52. Posted April 6, 2009 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    “I’ve also had a coworker who not only successfully shot and killed an armed assailant in Detroit who tried to kill him with a lead pipe, but whose friend successfully killed a serial rapist in Detroit and was thanked by the police who had been unable to catch him.”

    While I’m certainly not going to argue against one’s right to defend themselves or protect others, who made you or your coworker God? I thought that’s what courts and police were for. I wonder how many people get shot by “law abiding citizens” who didn’t do shit besides be “suspected” of trying to do something or, worse yet, commit the cardinal sin of being black.

    Why would anybody brag about killing anyone? You and your coworker may laugh at how you killed some spook and protected the world with your penis-pieces. I’ve seen guys that went to war and killed folks and don’t wear that shit on their lapel. In fact, it’s the last thing they want to talk about. Unless, of course, they’re complete assholes.

    You are right to discuss Constitutional rights and the finer points of what we can and cannot do, but your logic is kindergarten.

  53. Curt Waugh
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    Einstein?! You’re comparing yourself to Einstein? For real? Well, it’s all relative, I suppose.

    I’ll comment on this event: This “event” didn’t have jack shit to do with Ypsilanti. These two could have been from anywhere and this could have happened anywhere. They were clearly previously acquainted, so once again we realize that we have more to fear from the people we know than complete strangers — which ALL statistics will support.

    It went down like this: Two assholes got into it somewhere. The 1st broken asshole (who is a bigger asshole than the 2nd asshole) decided that a gun would be a great way to settle a petty dispute that I’m sure impugned his manhood somehow. Since guns are everywhere, he found one lying around in the street. Or maybe he bought it off a 7-year-old for some gummy worms. My guess is that the 1st guy was bragging to the victim guy that he is always ready to “shoot to kill” and the 2nd guy laughed at him until he peed his pants. So the 2nd guy had to go change giving the 1st guy time to buy the aforementioned gun. Bing, bang, boom and here we are.

  54. dragon
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    From Brackinald:
    —-Gun control disarms the law abiding and emboldens criminals. It’s not just bumper sticker slogans, it’s true.

    Then how do you explain this(from 2002):
    Germany, 381 gun murders.
    France, 255 gun murders.
    Canada, 165 gun murders.
    UK, 68 gun murders.
    Australia, 65 gun murders.
    Japan, 39 gun murders.
    U.S., 11,127 gun murders.

  55. Posted April 6, 2009 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    All those murders were committed by people with illegal guns.

  56. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 5:35 pm | Permalink


    Here’s one answer to that.

    In short, you’re selectively using one thin slice of statistics to jump to a conclusion. Total murder rates are more relevant than just gun rates, as being murdered with a lead pipe or kitchen knife will make you just as dead. The prevalence of legal guns alone does not seem to be the deciding factor in murder rates one way or the other. Gun control does tend to increase gun crime in many instances, however, due to the disarming of victems (England since the gun ban, see previous post). At best, it does not reliably lower gun crime. Washington DC is a prime example — harsh gun laws, a lot of gun crime. Gun control didn’t work. I suspect culture to be the most significant factor, but there are also factors like a new kind of drug being introduced (crack in the early 80’s) that causes criminals to redraw their territories through violence, political changes that cause similar boundary/economic/racial disputes, etc. etc. etc.

    What guns do do, however, is equal the playing field like no other weapon can in favor of the weaker victem. Knives, lead pipes, and baseball bats all require strength and mobility to some degree. Those who are stronger, more mobile, and/or more numerous will have the advantage over the weaker, less mobile, and outnumbered with nonfirearm weaponry. Guns, however, can be used in self defense by anyone able to point and shoot. Grandma in her wheelchair can more likely defend herself with one gun from 6 big rednecks with baseball bats than she could if she had to rely on a knife, pepper spray, or any other weapon. Firearms diminish the advantage of the physically stronger aggressor by a degree unequalled by any other weapon.

    Whether you agree with mandatory training, testing, and licensing or not, I, the Ypsi Police Dept, the Washtenaw County Sherrifs, and the State of Michigan all agree on one thing: I have been proven more worthy by law to carry a concealed firearm than those of you who are arguing with me who do not have a ccw or cpl. The law is on my side, and personal experience is on my side. Pretty much all you have, Curt, is inaccurate character assessments.

    I think it would be worse to be shot than stabbed, as both events create a wound channel through human tissue, but the bullet’s wound channel is less cleanly cut, is delivered with more force, tends to be deeper and wider, creates hydrostatic shock, and often has a hot deformed chunk of lead stuck in the bottom of it. No thanks.

  57. Posted April 6, 2009 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    That’s bullshit. You took a test and passed. You were able to present a face and passed. So fucking what.

    So did the guy at Virginia Tech and countless other people who have been more than willing to blow the heads off somebody at some point for whatever reason.

  58. Posted April 6, 2009 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

    Let’s all start submitting drawings of what we think the cocks of our regulars look like… BA, EOS, dude, OEC, etc.

  59. Patrick
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

    BA wrote, “What guns do do, however, is equal the playing field like no other weapon can in favor of the weaker victem.”
    From what I have seen of those gun retention classes, that is largely a psychological factor. It is fairly easy to turn a weapon against its owner. I am not really arguing against the ownership of a weapon, because I am just an anarchist, and because gun violence perpetrated by people who carry legal concealed weapons is really a small part of gun violence. Mostly the legal gun owners shoot themselves or their wives or their hunting/drinking/poker partners and their kids or leave the things lying around loaded so their toddlers can kill themselves anyway, so it is really not something I am personally afraid of. But, I wouldn’t put a whole lot of faith in a concealed weapon if I were really in a dangerous situation, which I am never really in anyway.
    Because I have a father who legally routinely carries a concealed legal weapon and who has been trained a hell of a lot, and who has owned and fired guns all his life, and who has nearly killed my sister and me on several occasions (accidentally), I can say that for at least a few of those who are gun crazy, it is a serious question of insecurity. I don’t dislike my father for it, in fact, I pity him. I guess he feels he got pushed around by the bigger kids when he was little. From what I hear, he did get kicked about some. Let’s face it, he has a complex.
    Not making any assumptions about anybody posting to the thread, (or the size of their thingies), but I think there is some truth to the stereotype.
    Just for the record, the guy at Virginia Tech had no license to carry a concealed weapon. In that particular instance, dude, you and BA are talking about separate things. But yes, the guns he had were bought legally.
    I have been kind of stabbed with a stainless-blade pocketknife, and it did not hurt that much when it happened. It hurt a lot later. I have never been shot, but I have seen what one of those mercury filled hollow points does to a watermelon. It would hurt to be hit with one of those things. I would prefer to be sliced in some meaty part of the body by obsidian. It might not hurt immediately. You would die from blood loss and shock.
    I think anybody who carries a concealed weapon legally should be required to take a solemn oath to use their weapon to shoot Dick Cheney in the nutsack if they see him. If they don’t take the oath, they don’t get the permit, simple as that. That should be the law. I will speak to my representatives about it.

  60. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 6, 2009 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    Please submit my cock picture as a lenticular.

  61. Posted April 7, 2009 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    I think submitting a picture of your penis should be a requirement to carry a concealed weapon.

  62. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 7, 2009 at 7:40 am | Permalink

    Most gun owners don’t shoot anybody, ever, point of fact. And luckily our legal system doesn’t judge me or anyone else based on silly collective guilt-by-associations like the color of our skin, or even Patrick’s impression of his father’s character.

    It’s okay to support a sports team based on base emotions and irrationality — that’s what sports are for. Basing public policy that infringes on other people’s rights on emotions and irrationality is just plain dangerous. Be reasonable, learn the laws, get familiar with the realities of firearm ownership before you make rash judgements. That’s not aimed at you, Patrick, just a general admonition.

  63. Posted April 7, 2009 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    The guy that went and shot up an immigration support house in New York just sent a copy of his gun license to the local TV station. While not a concealed weapons permit, it goes to show that gun licensing does not work.

    I’m sure that people on the right here are celebrating a few less immigrants in this country, but it’s shit like this that makes one wonder what’s truly wrong in this country.

    It’s not gun laws. It’s a cultural problem. We will never rid the country of guns, the genie is out of the bottle. However, ya gotta wonder why people here love to kill and threaten each other so much, guns or no and why people can’t feel like they have control over their lives unless they have the capacity to kill each other.

  64. Posted April 7, 2009 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    Dude: More than anything else, the Virginia Tech massacre was probably a failure of Virginia’s mental health system. In December 2005 (less than 1 1/2 yrs before the massacre) Seung-Hui Cho (the guy at Virginia Tech) had been ordered to receive ongoing mental health treatment, but his failure to comply with that order was never addressed. Since a court had found that he “presented an imminent danger to himself as a result of mental illness,” federal law (which the state of Virginia failed to enforce) prohibited him from purchasing or possessing firearms.

    So let’s see: Failure of the mental health system? Check. Failure to enforce existing laws? Check. Need for more restrictive gun laws? Unlikely. Relevance to this situation? Doubtful at best.

  65. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 7, 2009 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

    “Am I wrong? Do you have a lot of experience with firearms and firearm laws? I’m correctible if reality demands it.”

    Yep, I have experience with firearms of various sorts (on my high school’s rifle team, shot guns with friends, ride motorcycles with a friend who carries and is a gun nut, and I’ve researched CCW permits and the law several times). I don’t know if that measures up to your “a lot.” But really, your labeling others is an ad hominem fallacy. Whether or not the ones posting here have experience with guns–that does not necessarily invalidate their claims regarding guns.

    “If I knew a lot about fixing cars and a bunch of people started rattling off things that I knew were based on inexperience, I’d say the same thing.”

    Sure. And I don’t want to invalidate your experience. But you have to logically support your counter arguments. Of course, that assumes you are willing to engage in a full-fledged debate about laws regarding the right to carry guns (concealed or not).

    “Accidents happen with everything. More with cars than with guns.”

    By that logic, we should be fine with having everybody carry nuclear weapons. I didn’t bring cars into the debate to compare cars to guns–I only wanted to illustrate the mechanical inability that some (how many?) of our fellow citizens show. If an uncoordinated person carries, and if shit goes down, do I want that person shooting that gun as a way to “save” me? No. More bullets flying around makes my chances worse–unless the gun carrier has some good training (on par with that of the police). I’d be cool with laws for carrying in that case. It’s absurd, really, that people can carry for the purposes of protection without sufficient training.

    “Also, most of you don’t seem to realize that you do have to go through some training to get a CCW.”

    I know about the training. I know it really doesn’t prepare one for inner-city combat, with innocents all around.

  66. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 7, 2009 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

    I stand corrected about your experience, Dirtgrain. I’ll take your word for it that you’re telling the truth. Thank you for finally correcting me. As per my ad hominems, which I deliberately made on purpose and make no attempt to hide, reread the thread. You’ll notice that I was making my case without ad homineming people until I was personally accused of having a scary cowboy attitude by Curt, and as being a racist by dude. I am the wronged party, defending myself in like-manner to the attack, and I’m not sorry for that. If Curt had practiced what he preaches about conflict resolution, and not escalating arguments, I would not have to practice what I preach about self-defense.

    “Accidents happen with everything. More with cars than with guns.”

    By that logic, we should be fine with having everybody carry nuclear weapons.

    I fail to see how that follows, and it seems an absurd leap to me, since I was addressing an anecdote about a car, not a nuke. But let’s talk about nukes now. Is it possible to use a nuclear weapon without accidentally violating an innocent person’s life/limb/property? No, unless it’s on the moon I suppose. You can do it with firearms, however. Do accidents happen with firearms which violate innocent people’s life/limb/property? Of course. Just like with cars, knives, matches, and pans of bacon grease left on the stove. But they don’t necessarily violate innocent life/limb/property, like a nuke or bio weapon or some such would.

    Also, our founder’s envisioned the citizenry as a reserve military force that they called a militia, and that the individuals who might eventually volunteer to be trained (regulated) as a fighting force would supply their own light infantry weapons suitable for military combat as light infantry. Such military arms included muskets, pistols, rifles, and who knows, maybe a sword or knife… the cutting edge of light infantry weaponry at the time. They were expected to buy their own weapons, ammo, and equipment, and train with them, so that if the militia was called up they would be armed and know how to use their arms. The founders’ intentions in this regard are spelled out clearly in their writings, including the Federalist Papers.

    Supplying one’s own personal nuclear weapon would be far beyond the scope of personal defense or militia duty. And, again, a nuclear weapon can’t be used without accidentally violating an innocent person’s rights in some way. Except by the moon militia.

    Of course, our founders also respected an individual’s right to own and carry firearms for personal self-defense, regardless of one’s membership or potential usefulness in/to a militia.

    No amount of training is foolproof, Dirtgrain. And no amount of gun control is criminal proof. There are existing laws in effect for punishing people who harm others or their property with a firearm, accidental or otherwise. If this is not incentive enough for someone to exercise caution and self-discipline with a firearm, the consequences are shame, death, injury, fines, and/or prison. That makes me cautious. I agree that people should always continue to train themselves in firearm use and safety. If it had to be mandatory, it should be a mandatory part of public highschools. I think that would really help some kids learn to respect firearms and society, as they would learn that their desire to use firearms is not shameful and evil, but a good and useful part of society. Seems to work in Israel (whatever your opinion of Israel is) and Switzerland.

    You’re wrong about the training (I recieved, at least) regarding inner city combat with innocents all around. Our law instructor was a Detroit cop who trained us plenty on the consequences of stray bullets finding someone or something — that it was our responsibility both morally and legally. We were trained to be aware of what is behind our assailant, as we would possibly be hitting it too. But again, training is no preventer of personal misconduct, no matter how strict. We’re all trained to drive safely, but we don’t.

    As an aside, here are the problems I do have with the training: the NRA gets a legal monopoly on it, they get all the money from it, and they teach that the minimum self-defense caliber should be a 9mm. I think that’s stupid. A .22 is a small round, but it’s wider than an ice pick. I wouldn’t want to be stabbed with a hot, fat, blunt icepick (all innuendos aside). Plus a .22 is less likely to go through somebody and into somebody else. But gun folks argue about such things into infinity. I just don’t like that the NRA has a legal monopoly on a State licensing requirement, personally. I’d rather no mandatory training and the NRA gets nothing.

  67. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 7, 2009 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

    Let’s see if I remember my training correctly… there are 3 things that have to happen in order for a homicide to be a justified homicide (self-defense):

    1) There must be an imminant, credible threat of death or grievous bodily harm (this includes rape, by the way). Getting puched by one guy doesn’t count… unless he’s 600 pounds and you’re an 80 lb grandma in a wheelchair or similar. Being threatened with a knife, gun, or club always counts.

    2) The victem must be innocent. (i.e.: no grabbing some guy’s wife’s ass to provoke him to threatening you so you can get away with shooting him.)

    3) The defender must pass the “reasonable man” test. (i.e.: any reasonable man in the same situation would have done the same thing). This is just so some loop-hole finding asshole can’t get away with murder on a technicality, pretty much. If a jury doesn’t think your killing someone in self-defense was a reasonable response to the situation, you’re up the creek.

  68. Posted April 7, 2009 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

    I pretty much agree with you politically, Brackinald/Brackache/BA/etc. And I’m not really qualified to make assumptions about your character or your motives.

    I’m just curious if you’ve ever found any benefit come out of having a big long argument on Mark’s blog that doesn’t have much of anything to do with the original post, and seems to bring out the worst in everyone. Seems like even if you win and successfully defend yourself and your position, you still kinda look bad, and nobody seems to end up persuaded. Maybe I’m not getting an accurate impression, based on facts and figures and polling data, but that’s just my impression.

    I’m just saying, maybe what you’re trying to plant would grow better on its own without you tugging on it and calling attention to its shortness all the time. You’re approach just doesn’t seem to be helping anything, is all. No insult intended.

  69. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    I like the truth. Not everybody does. I tell it as I see it. Then they get mad.

    I’m not sure if my foreknowledge of people’s bad reactions equals my predestining an argument, if that’s what you’re implying. I’m not holding a gun to anybody’s head.

  70. Huckett
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

    Maybe it’s time for another “beer with bloggers” event! We could all hug and then show each other our guns and stuff.

  71. kjc
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    I didn’t realize paranoid, presumptuous and aggressive self-righteousness equal truth. BA, your ability to see yourself as complex and others as simply ignorant and inexperienced is a mark of your myopia, not of your lucidity. I consider it your greatest intellectual weakness and I see it as constantly undermining your arguments. You don’t see your own self-interest, your assumptions, your defensiveness, your contradictions. I can’t think of anyone less persuasive except Dude. But at least he’s not trying to be.

    Just my opinion–and yes, I realize my opinion would have to be the same as yours to have any truth value. I don’t mind if you think you’re a persecuted genius; I just wish you didn’t go on about it so. I refuse to engage with you cuz it gives me a Headache. But I think a dose of humility would do you good.

    ANYWAY, to relate this back to the thread–I was watching the historian Eric Foner the other day on Bill Moyers. Something he said about the way the concept of freedom has been hijacked by the right wing kind of explains for me how a discussion of gun rights hijacked this thread about violence in our community:

    “… I think Obama has a great opportunity to rekindle all other ideas of freedom which have existed in our history. Freedom as economic security, freedom as a sort of sense of dignity and empowerment for people who maybe have lacked that in the past, freedom as a collective sense of the society becoming freer, not just individuals.

    So, you know, I hope he does reclaim the idea of freedom. Since the Reagan revolution, freedom has been sort of dominated by…the right wing. It means owning a gun, not paying taxes, demonizing government. But there are many other themes of freedom in our history, which I hope Obama can, you know, can pick up and utilize.”

    I’m with Foner. My inclination is to think about this shooting as a social issue, not one of individual liberty blah blah. This doesn’t make me more right or mean I have truth in my pocket. It just reflects my values, my perspective, and my experience. I think there are a lot of people in Ypsi whose focus is similar. It makes me glad to live here.

  72. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

    I didn’t realize paranoid, presumptuous and aggressive self-righteousness equal truth.

    I agree that it feels like I’m being paranoid, presumptuous, and aggressively self-righteous, even though I’m not. I’d feel that same way if I were you.

    My presumptions about people’s lack of experience with firearm laws was both inaccurate in that Dirtgrain has had some firearm experience, and accurate in that Dirtgrain doesn’t have personal experience getting a CCW and carrying a concealed weapon, which I accurately deduced. I just didn’t feel like splitting hairs when I gracefully conceded his point.

  73. Paw
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

    Should people be allowed to own anti-aircraft weapons, in your opinion, Mr. A?

  74. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    Regarding Foner, all sorts of ideas of freedom have existed in this country. But the concept of individual freedom over the idea of collective freedom (which is an impossibility if the individual members of the collective aren’t free) has a historical basis in Anglo-American jurisprudence that predates the founding of our country, let alone Ronald Reagan.

    I suspect that Bank-Bailout-supporting Obama, the guy who is bombing innocent people in Pakistan, a country which we’re not at war with, is most likely making up bullshit to lube the public’s butt pipe for his throbbing Bush-imitating-and-surpassing tyranny by telling his base what they want to hear, just like Bush did.

  75. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    I hadn’t put too much thought into it, Paw, as I’ve never had my life threatened by an aircraft in such a way that an anti-aircraft weapon would have solved the problem without violating an innocent person’s life/limb/property. Have you?

    Regarding one’s militia duties, I wonder how the Swiss and Israelis handle that question.

  76. kjc
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    BA, Jon Stewart feels your pain.

  77. Posted April 8, 2009 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    “I hadn’t put too much thought into it, Paw, as I’ve never had my life threatened by an aircraft in such a way that an anti-aircraft weapon would have solved the problem without violating an innocent person’s life/limb/property.”

    And how is shooting someone not a good way of violating an innocent persons life/limb/property? I don’t think you are getting much practice at shooting people when you are being threatened so I would think that you’d be pretty bad at it the first time.

  78. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 8, 2009 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

    kjc, you probably missed all the times I chided the Republicans for being hypocrits regarding taking Obama to task but not taking Bush to task, and how they were horrible tyrants themselves, and how they supported the bailouts as well… similar to when I just said that a few comments ago regarding Bush being tyrannical and Obama continuing his policies regarding bailouts and unjust wars, which he is.

  79. Mark H.
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 12:10 am | Permalink

    somebody above commented that “Of course, our founders also respected an individual’s right to own and carry firearms for personal self-defense, regardless of one’s membership or potential usefulness in/to a militia.”

    Let’s put the pro-gun ideology of the 20th century aside and consider actual historical facts. The 2nd amendment was written by James Madison, who had opposed adding any Bill of Rights to the Constitution, which was written – contrary to national myth – not to protect the rights of the People, but rather to create a stronger government, one more effectively insulated from the popular will of the citizens than was the case in each of the states. Madison finally went along with the Bill of Rights idea only when it became clear that concessions had to be made, if the const. itself was ever to be ratified. And then Madison, very cleverly, wrote the 2nd amendment in a way that stressed the needs of the militia, rather than the ‘rights’ of individuals to gun ownership.

    So basically, the person who wrote the statement i quoted above has his facts wrong. Madison and the other Framers of the const. most assuredly did not favor protecting gun rights of individual citizens as some kind of check on the power of the government. That was the furthest thing from their minds.

    That said, the mythology of what the 2nd amd. was intended to do is deeply held and much beloved, and there’s no winning a debate on this. Facts here don’t matter to those who care most about this issue. But i do wish they’d read Madison.

  80. kjc
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    BA, i haven’t studied your complete works, it’s true.

    “I agree that it feels like I’m being paranoid, presumptuous, and aggressively self-righteous, even though I’m not. I’d feel that same way if I were you.”

    Well, yes, if you were reading you, and not being you, you’d think so too! Rhetoric, my man.

    Thanks, Mark H. I haven’t looked at the Federalist Papers since college, but it’s time.

  81. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    Am I going to have to go upside someone’s head with a big rolled-up bunch of original documents again? You know I can and will, and it boggles my mind why you’d want to get hoisted again in that fashion, but you leave me little recourse.

    To kjc, I applaud your rereading the Federalist Papers. Once I get a moment to dredge up my own heavily dog-eared, highlighted copy, I’ll happily post a few of my favorite passages that address gun ownership.

  82. Mark H.
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 11:44 am | Permalink

    Brackinald Achery,

    you seriously think you can use original sources to prove or even just argue that Madison, the author of the 2nd adm., really meant for it to protect the rights of individuals to carry firearms as a protection against the power of the constituted government? Madison, who promoted the Constitution as a means of creating a powerful national government, removed from the popular will of the people? If you think you can do that, please have at it — but please rely on historical facts, not ex post facto mythology.

  83. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    For starters, here are some excerpts from the Federalist Papers #46, attributed to Madison. He is writing to try to persuade his audience (an audience afraid of tyrannical Government like the one they just fought) that a Federal government would not be impossible to overthrow by the States and the People if it became tyrannical, due to, among other things like State and local government resistance against the Feds, an armed populace outnumbering any standing army that could be raised by the Feds:

    “On the other hand, should an unwarrantable measure of the federal government be unpopular in particular States, which would seldom fail to be the case, or even a warrantable measure be so, which may sometimes be the case, the means of opposition to it are powerful and at hand. The disquietude of the people; their repugnance and, perhaps, refusal to co-operate with the officers of the Union; the frowns of the executive magistracy of the State; the embarrassments created by legislative devices, which would often be added on such occasions, would oppose, in any State, difficulties not to be despised; would form, in a large State, very serious impediments; and where the sentiments of several adjoining States happened to be in unison, would present obstructions which the federal government would hardly be willing to encounter. But ambitious encroachments of the federal government, on the authority of the State governments, would not excite the opposition of a single State, or of a few States only. They would be signals of general alarm. Every government would espouse the common cause. A correspondence would be opened. Plans of resistance would be concerted. One spirit would animate and conduct the whole. The same combinations, in short, would result from an apprehension of the federal, as was produced by the dread of a foreign, yoke; and unless the projected innovations should be voluntarily renounced, the same appeal to a trial of force would be made in the one case as was made in the other. But what degree of madness could ever drive the federal government to such an extremity. In the contest with Great Britain, one part of the empire was employed against the other.”

    “Extravagant as the supposition is, let it however be made. Let a regular army, fully equal to the resources of the country, be formed; and let it be entirely at the devotion of the federal government; still it would not be going too far to say, that the State governments, with the people on their side, would be able to repel the danger. The highest number to which, according to the best computation, a standing army can be carried in any country, does not exceed one hundredth part of the whole number of souls; or one twenty-fifth part of the number able to bear arms. This proportion would not yield, in the United States, an army of more than twenty-five or thirty thousand men. To these would be opposed a militia amounting to near half a million of citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties, and united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence. It may well be doubted, whether a militia thus circumstanced could ever be conquered by such a proportion of regular troops. Those who are best acquainted with the last successful resistance of this country against the British arms, will be most inclined to deny the possibility of it. Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.”

  84. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    “Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any bands of regular troops…” Noah Webster, “An Examination into the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution” (1787) in Pamphlets on the Constitution of the United States (P. Ford, 1888)

  85. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    “…to support the Constitution, which is the cement of the Union, as well in its limitations as in its authorities; to respect the rights and authorities reserved to the States and to the people as equally incorporated with and essential to the success of the general system;… to keep within the requisite limits a standing military force, always remembering that an armed and trained militia is the firmest bulwark of republics–that without standing armies their liberty can never be in danger, nor with large ones safe;…” President James Madison, First Inaugural address, Saturday, March 4, 1809.

    “”Whenever a people are so enervated by luxury as to intrust the defence of their country to a regular, standing army, composed of mercenaries, the power of that country will remain under the direction and influence of the most wealthy citizens.” Signed “A Farmer,” in the Philadelphia Independent Gazetteer, Letter XIV, January 29, 1791.”

  86. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    “As we have seen, the first public expression of disenchantment with nonviolence arose around the question of “self-defense.” In a sense this is a false issue, for the right to defend one’s home and one’s person when attacked has been guaranteed through the ages by common law.” Martin Luther King, Jr., Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community? Chapter II, Black Power, Page 55, Harper & Row Publishers Inc., First Edition, 1967.

  87. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    God forbid we should ever be twenty years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions, it is lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty. … And what country can preserve its liberties, if its rulers are not warned from time to time, that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to the facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure.

    — Thomas Jefferson, November 13, 1787, letter to William S. Smith, quoted in Padover’s Jefferson On Democracy

  88. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Legal definition of the American militia.

  89. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks.
    — Thomas Jefferson to Peter Carr, 1785. The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, (Memorial Edition) Lipscomb and Bergh, editors.

    One loves to possess arms, though they hope never to have occasion for them.
    — Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, 1796. The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, (Memorial Edition) Lipscomb and Bergh, editors.

    We established however some, although not all its [self-government] important principles . The constitutions of most of our States assert, that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves, in all cases to which they think themselves competent, (as in electing their functionaries executive and legislative, and deciding by a jury of themselves, in all judiciary cases in which any fact is involved,) or they may act by representatives, freely and equally chosen; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed;
    —Thomas Jefferson to John Cartwright, 1824. Memorial Edition 16:45, Lipscomb and Bergh, editors.

    No freeman shall ever be debarred the use of arms.
    —Thomas Jefferson: Draft Virginia Constitution, 1776.

  90. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man gainst his own bosom. Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American…[T]he unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people.
    —Tenche Coxe, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788.

  91. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    MCL Const. 1963, Art. 1, | 6 (1992)
    | 6. Bearing of arms.
    Sec. 6. Every person has a right to keep and bear arms for the defense of himself and the state.

    Michigan Compiled Laws 32.509: Organized militia; unorganized militia.
    Section 109 The organized militia of this state collective shall be known as the state military establishment and constitutes the armed forces of this state. The organized militia consists of the army national guard, the air national guard, and the defense force when actually in existence as provided in this act. The unorganized militia consists of all other able-bodied citizens of this state and all other able-bodied citizens of this state who have or shall have declared their intention to become citizens of the United States who shall be age 17 or over and not more than age 60, and shall be subject to state military duty as provided in this act.

    The classes of the Militia are (1) the organized Militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and (2) the unorganized Militia, which consists of the members of the Militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia.”

    32.555 Unorganized militia; power of the governor.
    Sec. 155. The governor may order into the defense force any members of the unorganized militia in case of riot, tumult, breach of the peace, resistance of process, or for service in aid of civil authority, whether state or federal, or in time of public danger, disaster, crisis, catastrophe or other public emergency within this state.

    32.655 State defense force and unorganized militia; determination of emergency.
    Sec. 255. In case of war, or a national emergency, when the national guard may be in the military service of the United States, the defense force shall be ready and able to protect the state in case of insurrection, invasion, disaster or other emergency, actual or imminent. In such case the governor, as commander in chief, may use the defense force augmented if necessary by all or a part of the unorganized militia not responsive to orders of the president for the time being. The determination of the governor that an emergency exists or is imminent is conclusive.

  92. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    Shall I go on?

  93. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

    No, as you have already wiped your arse with the Constitution by saying we don’t have the right to bear nuclear arms. You’re just another guy interpreting the Constitution to suit what you think is right–as should we all be.

    These “Founding Father” debates are bizarre–trying to figure out what they meant, speculating, ever dwelling on them. Why? They weren’t gods (you wouldn’t know it by the title, Founding Fathers, though); they were humans. We can figure things out without having to guess what they would do (WWFFD?). We can think for ourselves (or wait, do you think Madison wanted us to think for ourselves? Should we?).

  94. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

    In other words, Dirtgrain, you got nothin’.

    The point of finding out the founding father’s intentions by reading what their intentions were in their own words, is to interpret the highest law of the land accurately. You’re just dancing around the facts because you don’t like the conclusion.

  95. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

    In other words, you can’t think for yourself?

  96. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    Exactly what percentage of our population is cool and levelheaded all of the time? I teach high school, and I can think of only a handful of students who I think personality-wise could handle the responsibility of carrying a gun (obviously, high school kids aren’t collectively mature enough–but as I project who they will be as adults, I can think of only a handful). I can think of quite a few law-abiding adults whom I would not trust to carry a gun. How many of the people who are legally qualified to get a CCW are just too stupid or emotional or rash or temperamental to be carrying a gun? If we are going to hold them up as potential protectors who can put to rest violent situations with their trusty sidearms, then shouldn’t we have a more stringent process for weeding out the boneheads?

    One CCW permit holder I know tells me that if a pit bull attacks me, I should shove my whole arm down its throat. He claims it will choke on my arm and die before it bites of my arm. For all I know, it will work, but I don’t think it has been tested. He carries all the time. What kind of BS wisdom (by this I mean untested notions) does he have for scenarios involving gun violence?

    If he sees an armed gunman with a hostage, is he going to think, “What you do here is shoot the gunman in the head”? It worked for Nick Nolte in 48 Hours. Or will he look for the nearest high pressure gas canister and shoot it to create a diversion (myth busted?)?

    And if CCW permit holders are supposed to be a line of defense in public shooting scenarios, shouldn’t they have thorough live training scenarios? Or are they cool just playing it by ear and using their best judgment, however suspect that might be, and using their one day of CCW training?

    I would be okay with CCW permits if they required better training and strict standards for testing and drills. But as it is, I worry.

    How many here have been in a gunfight? Your experience would be valuable for the discussion. I’ve been in places where shots were fired, and that was chaotic enough. We, the average Americans, have enough trouble negotiating four-way stops–how good are we going to be in negotiating gun fights?

    Holy crap. Go check out the traffic circle at Geddes and Superior. I’ve seen too many idiots bungle that up since it was opened up. I’ve seen two drivers go backwards around it; four drivers who did not yield to me as I was in the circle (nearly causing side-swipe accidents); many drivers who stop while in the circle, seemingly thinking they have to stop for incoming traffic (which has a yield sign); and so many drivers who stop at the yield sign when no traffic is coming. You really want those people packing? Then, when shit goes down, they are supposed to negotiate an armed-gunman situation? That’s ridiculous. CCW permit holders should be tested and drilled extensively. They should go through those fake towns, like Tackleberry did, with the dummy people popping up in windows and doors (oh, an armed gunman in the alley, shoot him; oh, that’s a little girl coming around the corner, don’t shoot her; oh, that’s an old lady coming out of the door, but wait–she has a tatoo on the side of her neck, and that wooden leg is a shotgun–shoot her). Or maybe there are better training scenario options. But come on, call for proper training and drills, with high standards for ability and safety.

    What would police officers say if they were to go into a crowded area where there is a gunman shooting people–and potentially several legally-carrying citizens trying to take out the gunman with their own guns? Likely, police would rather not have the difficulty of discerning who is the perpetrator and who is a CCW good-guy. They wouldn’t want to have to go into that situation with uncoordinated gunfire. They wouldn’t want the CCW good-guy to get in their way or jeopardize their efforts. They wouldn’t want the CCW good-guy potentially putting innocent bystanders at risk. They would want all involved in trying to take out the shooter to follow protocols and be coordinated. That’s what I’m thinking, anyway. It would be better to get real cops’ perspectives, obviously

  97. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    Regarding the use of the Federalist Papers to interpret the intent of the Constitution, here is a paper that lays out to pros and cons of that approach (PDF):

    Here are the nine issues that the author, Gregory E. Maggs, addresses (note, he does not necessarily fully endorse each view–he considers each and to what degree it is important, and so you should look at what he writes for each):

    1. Delegates to the state ratifying conventions could not or did not read many of the Federalist Papers.
    2. The Federalist Papers may not have been persuasive to the ratifiers.
    3. The Federalist Papers are often self-contradictory.
    4. Hamilton and Jay are not ideal expositors of the original intent of the Framers. (Jay did not attend the Constitutional Convention, and he therefore did not know what transpired there. . . . Hamilton missed some of the Convention, took few notes, and did not vote after his delegation departed.)
    5. The secrecy of the Constitutional Convention makes the Federalist Papers an unreliable source of the original intent of the Framers.
    6. Statements in the Federalist Papers often conflict with other sources.
    7. The Federalist Papers provide questionable evidence of the original objective meaning of the Constitution because partisan bias may have influenced the authors’ choices of words and phrases.
    8. The Federalist Papers were not treated as an authoritative exposition of the meaning of the Constitution in the early years of the Republic.
    9. The Federalist Papers were not written to provide a definitive interpretation of the Constitution, but instead to address the question of whether the Constitution should be adopted.

    And here is the Maggs’ conclusion:

    Thousands of articles and cases have cited the Federalist Papers to support claims about the original meaning of the Constitution. Anyone reading these sources needs to know what the Federalist Papers are, why they might provide evidence of the original meaning of the Constitution, and what weaknesses claims about the original meaning may have if they rest solely on the Federalist Papers. I have attempted here to offer a concise Guide. I have sought to provide basic information about the Federalist Papers and the theories for how they may provide evidence of the original meaning. I also have considered nine possible grounds for impeaching claims about the original meaning that rely on the Federalist Papers. Each of these arguments has strengths and weaknesses that researchers should consider. In my own view, the Federalist Papers may not have recorded perfectly what the Framers thought, and they may not have influenced many of the ratifiers directly, but scholars can and should see them as a repository of the kinds of arguments that concerned citizens were making and were hearing during the ratification period in 1787-1788.

  98. Posted April 9, 2009 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

    Didn’t I say the same thing? I wouldn’t trust BA with my life nor anyone elses. I seriously doubt he’s ever been in a real firefight and would probably be shitting his pants so hard he couldn’t shoot straight, endangering innocent life and limb.

    Have you ever seen anyone get shot, BA? I think not. In my lifetime, I’ve seen at least four people get shot on four different occasions in four different cities. At least three or those people died on the spot. One of them was still moving when I left, so I can’t vouch for his being alive or not. Also, I say “at least” since I’m not sure if anyone else was shot on the one time that I saw a guy open fire into a car late at night in Brooklyn. It was dark. More people might have been in the car.

    Believe me, you don’t have time to do shit. Mostly you’re just praying that you didn’t get hit.

    BA, you may think your permit makes you a man. You make think that your gun makes you a man. But you are a child until you see someone’s brains splattered on the concrete.

    No, you can’t protect me. You are the last person I want protecting anyone.

  99. James Madison
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 3:32 am | Permalink

    I am astounded that anyone could imagine that any of the quotations produced in this unusual forum are true indicators of what was meant by the Second Amendment at the time it was written, by myself, and then ratified, along with the rest of the Bill of Rights, by the states. While I have at present other obligations and cannot long devote myself to these curious debates in this curious forum, I do recommend that anyone interested in the long ago origins of the Second Amendment consider this: Most of the quotations excerpted above were written before the Second Amendment existed; many of them were written before even the Constitution was written in 1787; other quotations produced above were from documents produced after my Bill of Rights was ratified; the Federalist Papers were important in some circles, to be sure, in gaining ratification of the Constitution, but most assuredly they were written with an intent to produce support for the Constitution, hence they were constructed as persuasive essays in the midst of political debate. The Federalist essays were not meant to reveal all the thoughts of their authors – rather they revealed just enough to persuade the influential undecided officials to vote for ratification. The Second Amendment was not addressed in those Federalist writings, as it did not yet exist. I never did see a need, a real need, for that Amendment, except as a means of pacifying public opposition.

    Please also, dear readers of the 21st century, note that none of the quotations produced from my own pen, copied above, at all indicate that my intentions in writing the Second Amendment were to permit individual citizens to own weapons that could be used against the government. The militia is, or at least it was in my day, entirely controlled by government at the state level. The Second Amendment affirms the rights of members of the militia to be armed; and of course there was no question in my day of confiscating the bird guns and such of citizens. I wrote the Second Amendment in the precise way that I did in order to ensure it would protect what was already well established and not controversial – that the militias of the states would be armed as their leaders saw fit – and that the militia would always remain well-regulated. Furthermore, as a skilled political leader who realized the need to shape public opinion in order to bend it toward the objectives of the Nation’s natural leaders, all for the good of the Nation, I intended this Amendment, along with all the Bill of Rights, to subdue opposition to the Constitution itself. The Second was, considered as a matter of law, a promise to honor what already existed, nothing more;considered as a matter of political expediency, this Amendment was an effort, quite successful, to neutralize open opposition, or even to draw critics into the pro-ratification. Apparently much meaning and intentions have subsequently been interjected into the Second Amendment, by people who weren’t alive when I wrote it; but such meanings are foreign to the intentions of its authors. No doubt these meanings have been added by subsequent constitutional amendments to the Second Amendment; but I have not seen those newer texts which so many of you seem to enjoy arguing about so much.

    Might I add one more point before I return to my own post-life commitments? Is it possible that Brackinald Achery has overlooked the chronology of events? I have never heard of the Michigan constitution of 1963 and would like to read it; but where is this Michigan? Likewise, someone mentioned a volume named WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE, published in 1967, by Martin Luther King, who I have never heard of before. Is that author a person of any consequence? Was he, as this quoation seems to suggest at least as presented here, an advocate of carrying personal firearms? If so, was he an avid hunter of game, as was my friend Mr. Jefferson? But those points are mere tangents. The main topic is this: Neither this Mr. King nor the constitution of a nation called Michigan had any affect whatsoever on anyone living in the 1780s or 1790s. Cause precedes affect. No person can create a causation of any sort until after that person is born.

    No doubt much has happened in the nearly two centuries since I lived. I commend you all for the progress you have made. I am especially impressed by the civic minded concern of this Mr., who seems to excel at creating civic debate over matters local, global, and international. This “blog”, if that is the proper name, is one of the best read sources from your side that we 18th century Framers, Founders, and scoundrels who are on the other side use to observe your “Current Events.” My compliments, and those of Mr. Jay, to Mr.

    Do the United States still exist as one government, one nation, one people?

  100. Paw
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    OK, I think a post by the ghost of James Madison trumps everything else. Game over.

  101. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Disguising yourself as zombie Madison and offering your theory without backing it up with original sources, while entertaining, still doesn’t trump my original sources. Do you have some writings of his or any other of the founding fathers that prove he was against individual firearm ownership and use for self defence? Are there any original sources you can cite? Then by all means cite them!

    I’ve shown that the militia was and is considered to be the whole body of the people, supplying their own militarily useful light arms. I will prove it some more. (see below)

    I’ve shown that the founders shared this assumption, and even added in a few nonfounders, such as MLK Jr. regarding the right of self defense, and other current legal documents such as the MI St. Constitution regarding private arms ownership for self-defense for good measure.

    The militia was considered a government-controlled entity made up of private citizens supplying their own arms, who could be called up by the States or the Feds to repell invasions, put down insurrections, and enforce the law… armed citizens who, in the event of Government tyranny, had the natural right of self-defense against said government… the Revolutionary War itself is the prime example of this prevailing philosophy among the founders. It’s right in the Declaration of Independance. If you can produce documents proving otherwise, do it.

    “The Militia Act of 1792, Passed May 8, 1792, providing federal standards for the organization of the Militia.

    An ACT more effectually to provide for the National Defence, by establishing an Uniform Militia throughout the United States.

    I. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, That each and every free able-bodied white male citizen of the respective States, resident therein, who is or shall be of age of eighteen years, and under the age of forty-five years (except as is herein after excepted) shall severally and respectively be enrolled in the militia, by the Captain or Commanding Officer of the company, within whose bounds such citizen shall reside, and that within twelve months after the passing of this Act. And it shall at all time hereafter be the duty of every such Captain or Commanding Officer of a company, to enroll every such citizen as aforesaid, and also those who shall, from time to time, arrive at the age of 18 years, or being at the age of 18 years, and under the age of 45 years (except as before excepted) shall come to reside within his bounds; and shall without delay notify such citizen of the said enrollment, by the proper non-commissioned Officer of the company, by whom such notice may be proved. That every citizen, so enrolled and notified, shall, within six months thereafter, provide himself with a good musket or firelock, a sufficient bayonet and belt, two spare flints, and a knapsack, a pouch, with a box therein, to contain not less than twenty four cartridges, suited to the bore of his musket or firelock, each cartridge to contain a proper quantity of powder and ball; or with a good rifle, knapsack, shot-pouch, and powder-horn, twenty balls suited to the bore of his rifle, and a quarter of a pound of powder; and shall appear so armed, accoutred and provided, when called out to exercise or into service, except, that when called out on company days to exercise only, he may appear without a knapsack. That the commissioned Officers shall severally be armed with a sword or hanger, and espontoon; and that from and after five years from the passing of this Act, all muskets from arming the militia as is herein required, shall be of bores sufficient for balls of the eighteenth part of a pound; and every citizen so enrolled, and providing himself with the arms, ammunition and accoutrements, required as aforesaid, shall hold the same exempted from all suits, distresses, executions or sales, for debt or for the payment of taxes.”

    Note the inclusion of a bayonet. A bayonet is a purely military arm. It’s not for hunting, it’s for killing soldiers. Everyone was required to buy one and keep it who was eligible for militia duty, because it was necessary for the style of warfare at the time.

    If you posited that our founders intent was that we should all be required to own select fire assault rifles and plenty of ammo for the good of our States and Union, I would agree with you, and so would the original sources.

  102. God
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    F***king Madison got out again.

  103. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    Whoah, Catch-22. Madison is God. Didn’t you hear? That’s why people are busy speculating about what Madison intended. You see, if BA discovers that Madison intended for Americans to carry guns, then all will be cool on that front; but if BA discovers holy documents written by Madison that spell out clearly that Madison did not intend for Americans to carry guns, then, instantly, BA will change his mind on guns, deciding that Americans should not carry them (or own them or whatever–arguments have seemingly gone from CCW permits to simple gun ownership and back and forth). Anyone on the other side of the issue looking to the FFs is in the same boat. But really, obviously, people aren’t trying to figure out what the Founding Fathers intended to guide their beliefs; they are merely looking for ways to substantiate/validate/empower their beliefs, ways to bend the Constitution and the Federalist Papers and whatever else to line up in their favor.

    This is the absurdity of speculating and dwelling on what the Founding Fathers (blech, I hate that label–it’s so cult-like) intended. Do you really need your dad (er, daddies) to tell you if it’s okay or not? Would you really do an about face on the gun issue if you discovered that the FFs didn’t intend it the way you think they intended it?

    Politicians use the label/concept the same way they use God–irreverently, without substance, merely as a tool for political ends. Too often, I see non-politicians mimicking the practice, as if they think that’s what they are supposed to do.

    Death of the author! “Do you have ideas, or do ideas have you?” Think for yourself.

  104. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    Sorry if I don’t respond in a timely manner to everyone in the dogpile, by the way; I’m only one man against many. My apologies for not being more accomodating.

    Dirtgrain: If my dad had an opinion about something and wrote a law about it, and we were trying to interpret that law AND someone proclaimed that the opinion he held was in fact something else entirely, and we could look through his own writings to settle the manner, we would be justified in doing so. We could always have a seperate argument about whether we agreed with him or not, his being as you say, just a man. But the issue right now, raised by Higby, is what his intentions really were, so that’s what I’m attempting to show with original sources. Feel free to disagree with Madison and the founding fathers about anything you want. I disagree with them regarding their apparently racist opinions, for instance.

    Speaking of racism, maybe we should go off on another tangient about the racist origins of gun-control since my opponents remain obtuse (for whatever reason) in the face of original documents showing the founders’ pro-private-gun-ownership intentions.

    I expect my opponants will continue to remain obtuse regarding these facts as well… for whatever reason. I look forward to being pleasantly surprised.

  105. Walter Street
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    Seriously? we’re still on this? Maybe I’m the only one who was just interested in the shooting a few blocks from me and not a huge moral crusade over gun control and racism

  106. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    Back to Madison’s intentions, however, This article, which includes Madison’s speech before Congress on the merits of introducing the Bill of Rights, really seems to fly in the face of Higby’s theory of Madison being hesitant about including a Bill of Rights and duplicitous in his choice of words in favor of enervating the powers of the People.

    I will be happy to change my mind about Madison’s intentions if a preponderance of original sources tend towards the conclusion that he was against individual gun ownership. So far, though, there hasn’t even been one.

  107. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

    I guess he was originally reticent, in point of self-correction, but not opposed.

  108. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    From Madison’s aforementioned speach before congress (I italicized lines that support my overall political philosophy of limited Government and rights retained by the people (as opposed to being granted by law), just for laughs):

    “It has been said, by way of objection to a bill of rights, by many respectable gentlemen out of doors, and I find opposition on the same principles likely to be made by gentlemen on this floor, that they are unnecessary articles of a Republican Government, upon the presumption that the people have those rights in their own hands, and that is the proper place for them to rest. It would be a sufficient answer to say, that this objection lies against such provisions under the State Governments, as well as under the General Government: and there are, I believe, but few gentlemen who are inclined to push their theory so far as to say that a declaration of rights in those cases is either ineffectual or improper. It has been said, that in the Federal Government they are unnecessary, because the powers are enumerated, and it follows, that all that are not granted by the constitution are retained; that the constitution is a call of powers, the great residuum being the rights of the people; and, therefore, a bill of rights cannot be so necessary as if the residuum was thrown into the hands of the Government. I admit that these arguments are not entirely without foundation; but they are not conclusive to the extent which has been supposed. It is true, the powers of the General Government are circumscribed, they are directed to particular objects; but even if Government keeps within those limits, it has certain discretionary powers with respect to the means, which may admit of abuse to a certain extent, in the same manner as the powers of the State Governments under their constitutions may to an indefinite extent; because in the constitution of the United States, there is a clause granting to Congress the power to make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution all the powers vested in the Government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof; this enables them to fulfil every purpose for which the Government was established. Now, may not laws be considered necessary and proper by Congress, for it is for them to judge of the necessity and propriety to accomplish those special purposes which they may have in contemplation, which laws in themselves are neither necessary nor proper; as well as improper laws could be enacted by the State Legislatures, for fulfilling the more extended objects of those Governments. I will state an instance, which I think in point, and proves that this might be the case. The General Government has a right to pass all laws which shall be necessary to collect its revenue; the means for enforcing the collection are within the direction of the Legislature: may not general warrants be considered necessary for this purpose, as well as for some purposes which it was supposed at the framing of their constitutions the State Governments had in view? If there was reason for restraining the State Governments from exercising this power, there is like reason for restraining the Federal Government.”

    This trombone is sad that Madison clearly believed the Contitution gave limited powers to the Federal Government, that the People retained their rights, and that additional restraints on the Federal Government from infringing on those rights was a good idea in case vague clauses were used as loopholes to userp undelegated powers.

  109. James Madison
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

    Mr. Brackinald Achery, speaking about my actions when I was among the living and active in political affairs two centuries ago, affirms, in one of his posts, that I was a strong advocate of A bill of rights, but then adds a small correction: “I guess he [meaning me, James Madison] was originally reticent, in point of self-correction, but not opposed.” This small correction is made by Brackinald Achery only after he takes the trouble of reading his first post about me — a post that he did not write, but seems to have copied from some newspaper of some kind. I am glad he is developing the habit of reading the things that he publishes — it is a good habit for all Men who engage in Public debate.

    But Mr. Achery remains very confused about the order of events. and thus his views of my role in the matter is often incorrect. The Constitution was written in the summer of 1787, in Philadelphia; it then was sent to the states, for ratification, which took over a year, and the first Congress did not meet until March 1789. The first presidential election I believe was in April 1789. North Carolina and Rhode Island refused to ratify the constitution without a bill of rights, and five states, in their ratification conventions, had insisted on a bill of rights being adopted as soon as the new Government was constituted. So the new national government was perhaps shakey at first, and we wanted all the States to join in the new nation. So Federalist leaders like myself agree to add a Bill of Rights; we saw it as a necessary step to forestall calls for a new constitutional convention. President Washington, in his inaugural address, called for these bill of rights amendments to be made, though he had opposed such ideas at the constitutional convention.

    The point is that the positions of Statesmen change over time, Mr. Archery Circumstances require expedient choices. While living I was first a foe of a Bill of Rights for the federal constitution, and later the author of the Bill of Rights that became part of the Constitution. This should not be so hard to understand. A living man may, for much of his life, be unmarried, and yet for many more years of his life, he may be Married. So too may people’s Ideas and positions alter over time. Those who realize that this truth applies to Statesmen are not accusing statesmen of duplicity, as Mr. Achery mistakenly accuses someone called Higby of doing.
    Thus, while in 1787 I had opposed the idea of a bill of rights, come September 1789 I think it was, I introduced 12 amendments, in the House of Representatives, 10 of which were ultimately ratified and became part of the Constitution, effective as of Dec. 15, 1791. I am honored that some people of your time think what we did in 1787, 1789, and 1791 are worthy enough to study and to comprehend. For 4 years, the Constitution did not have any Bill of Rights.

    The speech of mine to the Congress that Mr. Achery has quoted some version of was given when I introduced the bill of rights before the Congress in 1789. Mr Achery may overlook the fact that the first session of the first congress came AFTER the constitution was in effect, and just about exacdtly two years after the Convention had been completed with its work. Things change over two years – certainly they changed a lot in that post revolutionary decade in America.

    At the actual constitutional convention, we – the majority of the delegates at the convention –rejected all suggestions that a bill of rights was in order. We therefore put none into the constitution. I always felt that this was the correct choice, as our task was to devise a strong government — and we did! However, after the constitution was written, and put before the states for ratification, the cry of the Opposition went up that it was incomplete without a bill of rights. So advocates of the new constitution agreed that, at some future date, amendments should be drafted to provide for such Rights. This we did, and our amendments became effective upon ratification nearly four years later, in 1791. That Second amendment was meant by its authors to do nothing but affirm what was already common practice. Militias have the right to be armed as the states choose and as the states fund them, and militias must be well regulated in order to ensure the security of a free state. Thankfully, we Americans understand the need to avoid the chaos of allowing Highway men to roam our countryside, armed and intent upon committing acts of robbery against law abidding citizens. England suffered much from such armed highwaymen.

    Lastly, when Mr Achery quotes my comment in a letter that I had “always been in favor of a bill of rights… At the same time I have never thought the omission a material defect, nor been anxious to supply it even by subsequent amendment,”
    Mr. Achery seems to think that my words meant something other than what they did. The truth is too simple for him to grasp, perhaps: My words were accurate. Yes, I did come to favor a bill of rights being added to the federal constitution – previously I thought a bill of rights should be only part of that state constitutions – but I never thought that the omission of a bill of Rights was a material defect in the Federal Constitution. Nor was I ever anxious to Add a Bill of Rights thru amendments to the Federal Constitution. My speech, even as quoted by Mr B Acherly, was accurate: Take my words for what they mean.

    Most assuredly, when I did write the bill of rights and introduced them in congress, I was being politic, not contradicting my principles; and if I had thought it an urgent matter, I’d hardly have waited for months after the first Congress meet. The bill of rights was something I supported, over time, to appease and pacify the people. The words of the bill of rights were carefully selected so as to not undermine what we’d accomplished in the constitution itself. This is something anyone who carefully studies this history will find to be clear-cut and not at all controversial.

    I am an old ghost. Please forgive me for taking excessive pride in the fact that my handiwork of two centuries ago still seems to have a relevance in your own time.
    However, I have lingered in this strange conversation too long — though I remain as bewildered now as ever before as to why anyone would think that an attempt to commit Murder by one citizen against another, through the use of a fire Arm, is in any way relevant to the Second Amendment. Was the victim or the criminal involved in this Tragedy a member of the Militia? If so, I see the relevance, for in such a circumstance there must have been a serious failure of the Militia’s officers to regulate access to the Militia’s weaponry Arms in the usual, responsible manner.

  110. Brackinald Achery
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 12:19 am | Permalink


    1) Pretending to be James Madison, as if your statements were original sources in and of themselves, in lieu of producing actual original sources, is like basing ones theological argument on “God” billboards.

    2) My self-correcting is a sign of intellectual honesty and something you should strive to emulate.

    3) I based my self-correction on the commentary preceding the quote (as opposed to on the quote itself). The use of the word “reticent,” since it conjurs up feelings of unwillingness or disfavor, may even be a bit strong compared to the actual wording of the quote, which is:

    [I’ve] always been in favor of a bill of rights… At the same time I have never thought the omission a material defect, nor been anxious to supply it even by subsequent amendment.”

    I do read it plainly.

    I read it as he’d always been in favor of a bill of rights. Cross-referencing “At the same time I have never thought the omission a material defect, nor been anxious to supply it even by subsequent amendment,” with his speech before Congress when introducing the Bill of Rights, we can conclude that one reason he never thought the omission was a material defect is that he understood the Constitution as providing limited powers to Congress, and if a power was not explicitly authorized by the Constitution, Congress couldn’t do it. He assumed that all rights resided with the people, including the right to keep and bear arms, and the right of self-defense. Since the Constitution didn’t give Congress the authority to forbid the keeping and bearing of private arms, he wasn’t worried that they could do so. Those who were resistant to the Constitution were worried that Congress might try to use a vague clause to usurp unspecified powers, however, and to assuage their fears he decided that putting in a Bill of Rights was a good idea after all.

    4)He did very cleverly word the 2nd Ammendment. I’ve shown that the founding fathers considered the militia to be the People, supplying their own military arms. I’ve shown this by showing their own words on the subject and by showing the excerpt from the militia law requiring citizens to supply their own military arms, ammunition, and equipment. So he and the rest of our founding fathers considered private individual military gun ownership to be an essential element of the militia. Since he and they considered private citizens bearing their own private arms in concert was a better security to a free State than a standing army, which throughout history have been used to tyrannize citizens by their own Government (which happened to them during the Revolution), he and they wanted to make sure it was very clear that the Federal Government would not disarm the militias by disarming individual citizens.

    5)Similar to #4, the People means the People. The right of the People to do thus and such means the right of the People to do thus and such. It doesn’t mean the right of the States or the Federal government to do thus and such. For instance:

    “the right of the people peaceably to assemble”

    “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms”

    “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures”

    “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

    “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

    In no other instance in the Bill of Rights is “the people” taken to mean “the State/s” — it is taken to mean all individuals. On what basis do you think the 2nd Ammendment is the exception?

    6) “the right of the People to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed” is the operative clause of the 2nd Ammendment. That’s the one that counts. “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State” is the justification clause of the 2nd Ammendment. It justifies the People’s right to keep and bear arms, which shall ot be infringed. You would argue that it effectively nullifies it! What the hell kind of legal interpretation is that? Prof. Eugene Volokh of UCLA Law School wrote a pretty good essay regarding this very point.

    7) “Well-regulated,” in the terminology of the times, meant “functioning properly.” You seem to think that “well-regulated” was synonymous with “tightly-controlled by legislation.” Well, it wasn’t.

    That’s all for tonight. Happy Easter.

  111. Patrick
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    If anybody sees James Madison walking around Ypsilanti somewhere, could they please try to make a quick sketch of Dolly’s ass and post it to

  112. James Madison
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 11:48 pm | Permalink

    My wife spells her name Dolley, Mr. Patrick. Why anyone would like to see a drawing of any donkey that she might happen to own escapes me, but there are many things about your time and place that I admit I do not understand.

  113. Patrick
    Posted April 13, 2009 at 1:41 am | Permalink

    Yep. Our time confuses me sometimes, too.
    But your conversation with BA has gone astray from his original post regarding the shooting at the Golden Wall, anyway, Mr. Madison. Do you think, for example, that it would be a good idea for all people who are legally eligible to carry a concealed weapon to do so? Would it solve any of the larger society-type problems for the majority of the populace to be packing heat?
    That was kind of what BA’s advice to readers was in his first post.

  114. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    College student shoots, kills home invader.

  115. dragon
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    Homeowner dies after shooting in East Knox Co. break-in

    Posted: May 3, 2009 12:25 AM EDT

    Updated: May 4, 2009 11:05 AM EDT

    CORRYTON (WATE) — A homeowner who was shot Saturday night during a break-in at a home on Washington Pike has died at UT Medical Center.

    The victim was Billy Graves, 52.

    Officers say two men wearing bandanas over their faces broke into the home of Graves and his wife at 9920 Washington Pike.

    Gunfire was exchanged between the suspects and Graves, who was shot once in the abdomen.

    Graves was airlifted to the hospital and died Sunday night.

    The two suspects fled the scene.

    Officers say robbery appears to be the motive.

    A safe was recovered not far from the home, but it was empty.

    Graves’ wife wasn’t injured during the break-in.

  116. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 10:47 am | Permalink

    Wait, dragon… did you post that story to prove that the guy who unsuccessfully defended himself should not even have the right or ability to try? How does that follow?

  117. dragon
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    He tried, he’s dead. His wife didn’t she’s alive.

  118. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    HAHAHAHAHA!!!! Wow. Since we’re in making shit up territory, I conjecture that she lived because they fled the scene, having just been shot at. Maybe yes, maybe no. Either way, good for the husband for attempting to defend them both against greater odds. That guy’s a hero.

  119. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    Dragon, what in the world are you thinking?! Mr. Graves very likely saved his wifes life.

  120. dragon
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    “good for the husband”

    yeah, real good.

    “very likely saved his wifes life.”

    positively ended his own

  121. kjc
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    Maybe. Or maybe they wanted to rob the place and not shoot anyone. The problem with heroes is they’re usually dead. Maybe Mrs. Graves wishes she were too, now that her husband is gone.

    My favorite line from BA’s piece: “One female student was shot several times during the crossfire.”

    I don’t know what anecdotal evidence is supposed to mean anyway, especially when it’s of only one sort. Is that an argument??

  122. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Obviously, Mr. Graves’ intention was to protect both his own and his wife’s lives, with a priority on that of his wive’s life I would assume. He wasn’t willing to trade the possibility of something happening to his wife for the possibility of sacrificing his own life.

    It may come as a shock to you, Dragon, but there are some people who value something more than their own life.

    Dragon, now you know why I rejected your marriage proposal.

  123. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    The secret is, my position is inherantly easier to defend, since all I have to show is that resisting violent attackers with a gun can be beneficial. I can produce even a few real-life examples and my point is proven. My detractors’ position (that my position is wrong in whatever way) is a lot harder to defend, providing they can even agree on one reason why it’s wrong.

    kjc, I’d say one recoverable injury in the crossfire is worth everybody not being raped and dead.

  124. dragon
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:25 am | Permalink

    “Dragon, now you know why I rejected your marriage proposal.”

    And all this time I thought it was because I laughed at the size of your penis.

  125. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    I worded that wrong, but what I meant to say is that the gamble is this; Mr. Graves could do nothing and risk something horrible happening to his wife, or he can take a chance and very likely ensure that nothing happens to her. In the process he obviously endangers himself, but after gunfire is exchanged it is unlikely that the intruders will hang around for the police response.

    Mr. Graves likely made the right choice, even in light of the way things turned out. People who brake into homes while the owners are home are quite frequently very dangerous and reckless.

  126. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    And Dragon, I am sure your wife would agree with me.

  127. dragon
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    What do you think is the percentage of burgleries that end in the home owners being murdered ?

  128. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    Armed burgleries which take place when the occupants are home? Very high.

  129. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Armed burgleries initiated while occupants are present are a small percentage of burgleries as a whole. Criminals who break into a home knowing people are home are amongst the most dangerous types. They are almost always sadistic, and are quite often psychotic and homicidal. That is why they choose to break into an occupied home.

  130. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    Mr. Graves made the right choice considering the statistical probabilities. He was not likely to die for having made that decision, but unfortunately for him he was the exception.

  131. kjc
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    “The secret is, my position is inherantly easier to defend, since all I have to show is that resisting violent attackers with a gun can be beneficial. I can produce even a few real-life examples and my point is proven.”

    Oh we can definitely agree on the simplicity of your argument.

  132. Curt Waugh
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    Robert, what the fuck are you talking about? Seriously, I hope you’re saying all this in funny voices while you’re typing. Otherwise, you’ve just gone off the deep end.

    For the record according to the FBI, in Michigan in 2007 in there were 53,988 violent crimes and 308,775 property crimes. Nonviolent crime is almost 6 times as likely as violent crime.

    Yes, this student in GA stopped a violent crime. But that was during the commission of an actual violent crime. The other guy sure looks like he caused a violent crime. I don’t know these people, but I would wager his wife would prefer a live coward to a dead hero.

    It’s just a sad story coming and going. But these endless justifications and excuses you offer for it don’t help. That you feel good about this story at all (“made the right choice”, “good for the husband”) makes me want to puke. You have devalued human life by lionizing it.

    “Mr. Graves made the right choice considering the statistical probabilities.” Yes, I’m sure his Vulcan mind was keenly aware of the 15% chance that this crime was going to be violent. He then multiplied this by his score at the local shootin’ range (since he’s zero-for-zero at home) divided by the heft of the load he dropped in his pants to the power of the beads of sweat dripping in his eyes.

  133. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    There is no black and white here actually. Each situation is unique, and it all really depends on where an individual draws the line as to what risks they are and are not willing to take, and for what ends.

    For some people, even the slightest possibility that they, or someone they love, may be tortured or murdered is too much to risk. For them the gamble associated with escalation is worth taking. For others, it may not be.

    I respect those who will accept risk to themselves in hope that the situation is not going to become one of those in which they wish they had. I do not however respect those who will take those gambles with the lives and well being of loved ones, or at least I think it is a stupid mistake in most cases.

    It is never a good idea in my view to allow anyone with any ill intent to gain advantage if it is in one’s power to prevent that. For example, in any instance where someone tries to abduct an individual, it is logical and reasonable for that individual to fight the abduction as though their life depended on it, even though it’s possible it doesn’t.

  134. dragon
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    -“They are almost always sadistic, and are quite often psychotic and homicidal.”

    -“possibility that they, or someone they love, may be tortured or murdered ”

    -“any instance where someone tries to abduct an individual”

    Jesus, where in the hell do you live?

  135. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    I need an editor. What I meant to say above is “I respect those who will accept risk to themselves in hope that the situation is not going to become one of those in which they wish they had not accepted that risk.”

    The point is, all this talk in absolutes is nonsense. We don’t know enough about the Graves break-in to be making conclusive judgments about the wisdom of his decision. We don’t know exactly who confronted who, or how they did. We don’t know if he and his wife were cornered or had another way out. We don’t know if he knew the robbers were armed. There are countless variables which would figure into a situation like this.

    Statements concluding Mr. Graves did the wrong thing are at least as baseless and unhelpful as you accuse me of being, and suggesting that everyone should take a wait and see approach toward developing crimes is absolutely idiotic.

  136. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    By the way, Curt, breaking into a home with a loaded firearm shows intent. You’re an attorney aren’t you?

  137. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    Well reasoned, Robert.

  138. kjc
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

    “The point is, all this talk in absolutes is nonsense. We don’t know enough about the Graves break-in to be making conclusive judgments about the wisdom of his decision.”

    Oh. See I thought BA was posting this story in support of his argument regarding guns and i thought you were agreeing.

  139. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    KJC, I believe Robert was referring to making conjectures about dragon’s post about the Graves break in, because none of us had enough facts to do anything but make conjectures in that case, unlike the case of self/other defense that I posted. If I’m reading it right.

  140. ytown
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    What? Are my eyes deceiving me? Robert I actually agree with you!

  141. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    Brackinald, yes, you are reading it right, and I feel very free making all the conjectures I wish here on I will continue to do so whenever I see the liberal buffoonery which runs so unchecked here.

    My statements weren’t purely for fun and games though. I do feel it is the right of a person to defend the security of their home with deadly force. My views on that are most in line with what is the law in the State of Montana. I say that in all honesty.

  142. Robert
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    Yes, ytown, you and I are on the same page on this one for the most part. That’s why I’d rather have you or BA as a neighbor than any of these other foggy-headed folks.

  143. Paw
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

    I love to imagine hypothetical outcomes. Let’s imagine for a moment that the Colombine killers didn’t have guns, but were armed with tri-fold brochures on Ron Paul.

  144. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    Here is a blog that compiles self-defense news stories. Good reads.

  145. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Now, Paw, since the law is powerless to stop Columbine-type killers, imagine if some teachers were allowed to carry guns in self-defense in Columbine.

  146. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    Another good blog full of gun self-defense stories.

    I would be interested to see if the blog dynamic would be affected by Robert, me, and ytown all being neighbors.

    I’m thinking a lot of Mexican stand-offs.

  147. Posted May 6, 2009 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    Why can’t schools just hire armed security guards? I don’t like the idea of teachers with guns. It presents a weird power dynamic that has no place in educating kids.

    I don’t mind paid armed security or police, but I shudder to think about some asshole coworker that feels he has the need and right to “protect” the rest of us, just because he has a gun. Fuck that.

  148. Paw
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

    If fetuses were armed, there would be no more abortion!

  149. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    Good point, Paw; people do only tend to respect things that can defend themselves.

  150. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

    SOME people, I should say.

  151. dragon
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    100 armed fetuses agree; respect those who realize when they are being ridiculed.

  152. Dirtgrain
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

    “By the way, Curt, breaking into a home with a loaded firearm shows intent. You’re an attorney aren’t you?”

    You expect them to walk around unarmed?

  153. Dirtgrain
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

    Regarding schools, we should let students carry guns, so they can protect themselves. Students with guns, teachers with guns, maintenance workers with guns, parents with guns, cafeteria workers with guns–can you imagine it? I’d sure feel a lot safer.

  154. Ol' E Cross
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

    Heaven forbid there should ever be a “weird power dynamic” in education. Maybe we should replace tenure with guns and/or vice versa.

  155. Ol' E Cross
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

    More people die annually from the common flu in the USA than from gun deaths (true), therefore the flu is more dangerous than guns, therefore, to protect yourself, your loved ones, or random strangers, you have the right to shoot anyone who has the flu.

    Because it’s always best to kill someone who carries a hypothetical risk.

  156. Laura
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

    If my husband died to protect me from being raped I’d kill him. Get off your seventh grade male ego insecurity. I’m glad that I married a man, not a manchild who slept with a gun under his pillow waiting to do something irrevocably stupid.

  157. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 12:13 am | Permalink

    dragon: no shit.

    Dirtgrain: who allowed the Columbine killers to bring guns into school?

    OEC: the flu doesn’t kill or grievously injure most people afflicted with it. Getting shot/stabbed/clubbed by a violent aggressor does; nor is the threat imminant; nor would it, in most cases, fall under the description of an unprovoked aggressive attack, especially in your scenario. I assume that you were just trying to be funny, not trying to make an actual argument.

    Laura: your personal feelings on how you like your men are perfectly valid, and your accusation of my character is innaccurate… unless you were addressing Robert.

  158. Paw
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    Or, on the other hand, what if the Columbine killers had been aborted by their mothers?

  159. Paw
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    Or what if we armed Michael Moore?

  160. kjc
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    “If my husband died to protect me from being raped I’d kill him. Get off your seventh grade male ego insecurity. I’m glad that I married a man, not a manchild who slept with a gun under his pillow waiting to do something irrevocably stupid.”

    Laura, I hate to tell you this, but if your husband is not willing to kill and be killed in the line of household duty, he might be a liberal buffoon. Furthermore, if word gets out, certain armed men (aka “good guys with guns”) will not want to live next door to you.

  161. Posted May 7, 2009 at 8:47 am | Permalink

    Not to mention that he’s already dead and you suggest killing him again.

  162. Steph
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    Can’t we all just agree that killing someone in our own home would be a lot of fun?

  163. Dirtgrain
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    Yah, would you want to still live in a house where you shot intruders dead? That would be creepy.

  164. Robert
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    Wrong, kjc. I wanna live next to Laura more than ever.

  165. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    That’s a great point about living in a place where you killed an intruder. We all accept that ghosts happen when someone dies a violent, untimely death, and/or leaves something unfinished. Do you think they’re allowed to haunt somebody else’s house that they broke into illegally and where they were justifiably killed? Would they just keep trying to steal your TV for eternity until you went to their grave and buried it with them or something?

    It seems like that’s not how it works. Like, you’ve got to be an innocent victem to be a ghost. Or really, really, especially evil, like the guy in Ghostbusters 2. Or maybe be a bunch of troops in the Civil War. I don’t think regular criminals get to be ghosts — seems that sort of populism would cheapen the whole phenomenon.

  166. Kate
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    We should all be allowed to carry ghost destroying devices too.

  167. kjc
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    “Wrong, kjc. I wanna live next to Laura more than ever.”

    To protect her in lieu of having a man to do so? or to break in and steal her tv since you’d have no fear of being shot?

  168. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    What’s up with all this “be allowed” stuff? You have every right as a human being to defend yourself from ghosts. Nobody “allows” you to have rights, you just have them.

  169. Robert
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Not everyone is as superstitious, selfish, or cowardly as I am.

  170. Robert
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:47 am | Permalink

    Kjc, she just seems way hot. That’s all.

  171. kjc
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    if laura ever comes back, i think she might be totally creeped out by that.

  172. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    Note the word “unlicensed.” Nuclear accelerator control DOESN’T WORK.

  173. Robert
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Her insights will be missed.

  174. Dirtgrain
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    “That guy’s a hero.”

    Patton: “Now I want you to remember that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country.”

  175. Dirtgrain
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    Regarding ghosts and such: it was not at all what I was thinking about. Traumatic memories–that’s what I was thinking about. Sitting down at the breakfast table every day next to the spot where an intruder gurgled up his last blood–that could present problems for many (not BA, of course, who would likely leave the dead body lying around for a few days to remininesce in the glory of the kill. Then he’d rip off the head and use the intestines to tie it to the tree outside for gleeful games of tetherball–as a way to ward of ghosts and future ghost wannabes).

  176. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    That’s totally unfair, Dirtgrain. Inspired by Black Jake’s groundhog posts, I’ve decided that if I ever have to kill somebody, I will skin and eat them as well, out of the most admirable Native Americanny type respect for a kill. Be a shame to let that poor fella just lie there and go to waste.

    Chicks dig Native American stuff.

  177. Patrick
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

    BA wrote, “Chicks dig Native American stuff.”
    Yeah, they just don’t like Indians, though.
    Some Indians tortured the hell out of their prisoners for days, and the whole group gathered round to laugh their asses off. Then they disemboweled the unlucky fucker, stuck his head on a stick at the gates of the city. Then they made little drawings to remember the event.

  178. Posted May 7, 2009 at 8:37 pm | Permalink

    What if you could beat an intruder to death, but you had to use a baby to do it?

  179. Posted May 7, 2009 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

    Just to forewarn you there, Brackery: if you skin a man, you’re going to be spending a lot of time in the nether region.

    I’m not talking about hell.

  180. Laura
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

    Let me assure both Robert and kjc that my husband is more than adequate in performing his “household duties.” Maybe you two fellows need to hookup.

    A real man can take a punch without returning one. A real man can stick around and help his wife through recovery. A real man realizes that not leaving a widow to raise an orphan is worth letting some prick run off with his safe. Hell, triggers aren’t that hard to pull. I don’t need a “man” to pull a trigger for me. If that’s all that makes a “protector” then I’m a man. How hard is for a wife to pull a trigger? I’ve pulled them, it’s easier than cutting fingernails.

    We’re married. We have married friends. Everyone of them I’ve met where the “man” keeps a gun the “man” is compensating for something. Usually unemployment, being overweight, or dick size. Girls talk. I’ll take my buffoon. Any night. I doubt I have anything to add on this subject.

  181. Patrick
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 11:38 pm | Permalink

    Laura wrote, “We’re married. We have married friends. Everyone of them I’ve met where the “man” keeps a gun the “man” is compensating for something. Usually unemployment, being overweight, or dick size. Girls talk. I’ll take my buffoon. Any night. I doubt I have anything to add on this subject.”
    I wouldn’t give up trying to add something if I were you. If you don’t, we’ll just go back to riffin’ on the Constitution soon. Personally, I’d rather hear girls talk about dick size and Indian disembowelments.

  182. sb
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 1:00 am | Permalink

    I wish someone would have checked the story about Graves. Two masked men broke into his house, one wielding a gun.

    Police report the gunman forced Graves wife on to the floor with a gun pointed at her head.

    Fearing for her life, Graves drew a gun and shot. The gunman shot back hitting Graves in the leg. The gunmen than ran. Graves died from his wound the next day.

    Police have since then identifed a suspect and issued a murder warrant

    Two masked men one with a gun, one dead 52yo victim trying to protect his family and home. One very pissed off and very alive 47yo wife.

  183. stella
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 6:13 am | Permalink

    What’s all this crap about men protecting their women with a gun anyways? That’s the whole point of me owning a gun. I don’t need any daddys to protect me whether it’s a hubby daddy or waiting around for government sanctioned daddy to show up.
    I’ve been raped. I’ve been brutally assaulted. I can, and have, lived through that. But when I don’t know whether some intruder is going to kill me (or as someone just had to mention,) torture me, I want the playing field somewhat leveled. I even go so far as to want house odds.
    Furthermore I can’t believe this thread is even still alive. Somebody shoot it.

  184. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    You go, stella!

  185. Robert
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    I’m waiting for Dragon to ask stella what kind of neighborhood she lives in.

    Laura, I tend to agree with just about all your observations, and think your modest attempts at personal insult are endearing in a cute sort of way. I’m guessing you don’t realize you are talking to the undisputed heavyweight champion of personal attacks. I feel a little like Michael Jordan being challenged by Mark Maynard to a game of one-on-one hoops.

    My girlfriend wears the pants in our relationship too. She knows she’s dating a wuss. That’s the way she likes it. I guess that’s just speaks to her particular taste in men. I feel safe because she sleeps with her .45 under her pillow and has the reflexes and marksmanship of a Navy Seal.

    So my concern is that you are not properly protecting your husband. I feel he may be too nice to tell you straight out, but he probably would like you to show you love him enough to protect him.

  186. Posted May 8, 2009 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    …and I can see why it might be a bad idea for you to have a gun, Laura. You’re marksmanship is terrible. You’ve already hit one of your own (kjc) in your sloppy barrage of return fire, and the poor kid was just trying to kiss up to you.

  187. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 9:29 am | Permalink


    I compensate for my tiny penis by commenting on mark’s blog. The gun is for self-defense, which even hefty peni aren’t much good at.

  188. Posted May 8, 2009 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    I compensate for Mark’s tiny penis by commenting on his blog.

  189. kjc
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    seriously. and i even have to take BA out to dinner.

  190. Posted May 8, 2009 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    Mark’s anticipated response:

    “Yes, Laura, I can vouch for Robert. You’re unlikely to ever encounter a bigger dick.”

  191. dragon
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Recipe for a thread that won’t die.
    -Ingredients for zombie stew

    -Half dozen armed idiots(preferrable Don Knott’s Organic Apple Dumpling Flavor)

    -Two imaginary threats
    a.)Psychotic homicidal Unicorn
    b.)Maniacal raging Leprechaun

    -One package of ExtenZe male enhancement

    Mix into a large bowl of illogical nonsense

    Eat up!!!

  192. Posted May 8, 2009 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    translation: “I surrender”

  193. ytown
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    Laura= Insulated and sheltered Liberal
    Over-bearing Wife
    Never needed the police
    Married to a whimp who she’s protecting

  194. Posted May 8, 2009 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Watch it, ytown. You just described my girlfriend perfectly, except she’s heavily armed.

  195. ytown
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    Now that’s hot!
    A lib with a gun, you don’t see that everyday!

  196. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    Wait… which Robert is the blue one?

  197. Posted May 8, 2009 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    They’re both me. I went blue, BA, providing links to songs which serve as soundtracks to my comments. I’m overproduced like that. I figure it might help compensate the reader a little after reading my comments and feeling totally ripped off.

    And, yes, ytown, it is incredibly hot! My girlfriend looks like a more petite Jennifer Garner, but with the personality of the Cyberdyne Systems Model T-101 from the Terminator movies. She’s like a killing machine. I’m afraid to even consider breaking up with her. I live in constant fear.

    Now that I think of it, I may be in at least as bad a situation as Laura’s husband is, but for the opposite reasons.

  198. Posted May 8, 2009 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    Seriously, I have this theory that my girlfriend was originally sent from the future to kill me, but somehow we ended up dating instead. My charm is disarming like that, but apparently just not enough.

  199. Dirtgrain
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

    I wish SB would have provided a source.

  200. Posted May 8, 2009 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    Dirtgrain, you’ll want to look here:

    SB got details wrong. Billy Graves, the man who was shot, was 42, not 52. He was shot in the abdomen, not the leg. Seeing that SB got these details wrong, I wouldn’t be surprised if many of the rest of his details were wrong also.

  201. Dirtgrain
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    Yah, I did a quick search and didn’t find a source that provided some of his details.

  202. Posted May 8, 2009 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

    Yes, BA. I’m blue. Thanks for noticing.

  203. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 8, 2009 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    Found sb’s version.

  204. Robert
    Posted May 9, 2009 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

    I take back what I said about SB and re-apply it to the shabby press coverage.

  205. Dirtgrain
    Posted May 9, 2009 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    I was just calling out SB for not providing a source; he was chastising others, seemingly, for not having checked the story. And BA’s article is not SB’s source–unless he added information.

  206. Brackinald Achery
    Posted May 10, 2009 at 1:41 am | Permalink

    sb seems to have an inside scoop.

  207. Posted May 15, 2009 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    Interesting twists in the Graves robbery/murder story:

  208. Robert
    Posted June 25, 2009 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    This is probably more the kind of thing Dragon is concerned about:,2933,528966,00.html?mrp

    “Girl, 5, Accidentally Shot, Killed at Own Birthday Party, Police Say

    Wednesday, June 24, 2009

    BERYL, Utah — Authorities say a 5-year-old girl was apparently accidentally shot and killed at her own birthday party in southern Utah.

    Iron County Sheriff Mark Gower says the girl from Arizona was visiting her grandparents in Beryl this week to celebrate her sixth birthday.

    On Monday night, the girl and another girl apparently found a rifle in a bedroom. The girl was shot in the torso and died at a hospital in Cedar City.

    Gower says it’s not clear yet whether the girl shot herself or the other girl was handling the gun.

    The girl who died would have turned 6 on Tuesday.

    The gun is registered to the victim’s grandparents. The girl’s name was not immediately released.”

  209. Brackinald Achery
    Posted June 25, 2009 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    That sort of thing can happen if you leave loaded guns around where kids can find them. Same with power tools and cleaning products. Gotta put that shit where the kids can’t get it.

  210. Brackinald Achery
    Posted June 25, 2009 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    If you don’t, horrible tragic shit like this can happen.

  211. dragon
    Posted June 25, 2009 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

    You see, that’s the conundrum BA. In order for locked and loaded Granny to avoid this “horrible tragic shit” see would have had to been responsible, and keep the gun and ammo seperate places or in a safe, but then how would she have stopped the crazed maniac from walking in and brutally raping the kiddies? Maybe she just needs a better hiding place, because kids aren’t curious and would never have the urge to play with a gun.
    God, if only there was a simpler answer.

  212. Brackinald Achery
    Posted June 26, 2009 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    Maybe she just needs a better hiding place.

    Exactly. That is by far simpler and more effective than than trying to legislate away all guns.

  213. Dirtgrain
    Posted June 26, 2009 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    Pastor Urges His Flock to Bring Guns to Church. It’s the Grangerfords and the Shepherdsons. Jesus loves guns.

  214. Brackinald Achery
    Posted June 26, 2009 at 11:30 am | Permalink


    Cantor: “I brought a gun to my church today…”
    Congregation: “Nobody knows but Jesus…”

  215. The kingpin
    Posted June 26, 2009 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    Today, if you fuck with the Lord, he’ll turn you into a pillar of ROCKSALT! HaHa!

  216. Linch
    Posted June 26, 2009 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    If children were armed at birth, they would not be compelled to look for their parents’ firearms, play with them, etc. In a perfect world, kids would come out of the birth canal with snub-nosed revolvers.

  217. James Madison
    Posted June 26, 2009 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

    From my observations of your 21st Century American society, I can find no examples whatsoever of anybody “trying to legislate away all guns” yet this idea seems to be frequently mentioned as if it was a serious prospect. How can something that no legislator in the United States has ever seriously proposed, much less been passed by an actual legislature, be so often mentioned as if it’s a realistic possibility? I am confused by your time period’s culture and means of discourse. Do you seek some philosophical truth by a method of debating highly improbable outcomes as if they were realistic possibilities? Perhaps. But I am sure that all intelligent citizens of your time will recongize that it’s more likely that a dead Founding Father ex-president will dialog on a Blog than it is likely that all firearms will be banned in America.

  218. Tad Smidgen
    Posted June 27, 2009 at 12:19 am | Permalink

    From the NYT story:
    “When someone from within the church tells me that being a Christian and having firearms are contradictions, that they’re incompatible with the Gospel — baloney,” he [Pagano] said. “As soon as you start saying that it’s not something that Christians do, well, guns are just the foil. The issue now is the Gospel. So in a sense, it does become a crusade. Now the Gospel is at stake.”

    Guys, the “preacher’s” name is Pagano. Think about it.
    Is this story maybe from “The Onion”? This cannot even be true it is so ridiculous. The words this preacher numbskull is quoted as saying are actually caricaturish in the extreme. I congratulate this “preacher” on having completely extracted his stage personality from some Flannery O’Connor novel. That makes him a copy of a grotesque of a human being.
    “We have a very active agenda in all 50 states,” said Chris W. Cox, legislative director of the N.R.A., widely considered the country’s most powerful lobby.

    There is the problem. When Jesus of Nazareth did actually use force, remember that it was against money changers at the Temple doors. Today, those money changers have moved inside our temple.
    Does somebody start a crusade in the US every day or two now?
    Nothing wrong with guns. Something very wrong with idiots with guns.

  219. dragon
    Posted June 27, 2009 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    Exactly Mr. Madison.
    But what else is Brackinald supposed to do with his full bottle of Limbaugh tears, admit he got suckered?

  220. Mike want longr name
    Posted June 27, 2009 at 4:47 am | Permalink


    You think Brackinald is a Limbaugh fan? You haven’t been paying attention at all.

  221. James Madison
    Posted August 15, 2009 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    I am offer a challenge, and a reward for anyone who fulfills the challenge. The challenge is, Can anyone post verifiable information on this blog that proves that any state legislature in the Country is now or has in the last 20 years considered an act of legislation that would ban and confiscate all (all, not some) firearms from all residents in the relevant state? The reward is one free copy of the 1989 edition of my NOTES OF DEBATES IN THE FEDERAL CONVENTION OF 1787 (WW Norton, edited by Adrienne Koch). If this challenge is fulfilled, I will stand edified and I will happily send this volume to the qualifying party, through an appropriate intermediary.

  222. Brackinald Achery
    Posted August 17, 2009 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    Were my last comments on this and the auto company bailout threads aggressively moderated, as per Mark’s right as the owner of his blog?

  223. Posted April 11, 2010 at 5:48 am | Permalink

    Another shooting at the Cross-Ballard intersection, this one apparently behind one of the two party stores (police aren’t saying which).

    Is that intersection the crime center of Ypsi or something?

  224. Posted July 21, 2015 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

    This is a really interesting thread. I hate that it took another shooting outside of Golden Wall to bring me back to it.

  225. Demetrius
    Posted September 18, 2019 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Apparently, one person was killed and another injured last night in a shooting near the corner of West Cross and Ballard. So far, the reporting is fairly light on details. Does anybody know more about what happened?

  226. Demetrius
    Posted September 18, 2019 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Sorry, here’s the link:

  227. Posted September 18, 2019 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    Every time there is a shooting at Ballard Street and Cross Street, we should have a reunion of all the original commenters on this thread. Does anybody have the contact information for Dirtgrain, Brackinald Achery, kjc, Laura, ytown, dude, Curt Waugh, Patrick, cmadler, Ol’ E Cross, Paw and the others?

One Trackback

  1. By Another shooting in Ypsilanti on April 11, 2010 at 11:56 am

    […] I don’t suspect the two shootings are related, but it is interesting to note that the last shooting we had downtown was also at that intersection. […]

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