Shooty McGunpants April 24, 2007 2:00 PM   Subscribe

Given the events of last week, it is really inappropriate to "moderate" comments to this question, which announces (vaguely and without details or motive) a course of action that could very well be dangerous to public health. While requesting that responses be limited to those from people who agree with you is always counterproductive, here it is just stupid, and the moderators should either delete the question or leave on-topic comments alone. That. Is. All.
posted by Saucy Intruder to Etiquette/Policy at 2:00 PM (316 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

I was just happy to see you.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:06 PM on April 24, 2007


What the fuck? Totally valid question, move on.
posted by tristeza at 2:08 PM on April 24, 2007 [6 favorites]


Do some research on the "danger" to public health of legal, with permit, concealed carry, and then come back to us.
posted by knave at 2:08 PM on April 24, 2007


For the record, your deleted comment was
You really have to dress in business attire so that people assume you're a plainclothes cop. Shorts + t-shirt + gun = lunatic.

how a person could go about carrying a gun, daily, with casual clothing on, and not freak anyone out

Guns freak me out. I don't care if you're Joe Friday. Guns freak me out. Walking around with a gun in public for no reason freaks a lot of people out. I think what you are trying to accomplish is impossible, and to the extent I can say how bad of an idea this is without getting my comment deleted, this is a bad idea.
I specifically went back and forth with the OP about this question which he was concerned about asking. I asked him to wait a bit after last week. I offered to read the question for him. It's a very specific logistical question with a specific request to skip the ethical back and forth that always comes up in these threads.

Driving a car is dangerous to public health. So is drinking. So is fucking. So am I when I'm in a bad mood. I'm sorry, I know you clearly have strong feelings on the matter and I don't mean to poke fun, but there are ways to be somewhat off-topic and still respond to the question without derailing it and yours was on the far side of that. MetaTalk may be a better place to air your concerns. If you want to go back to the thread and talk about business attire without saying "guns freak me out" abd "this is a bad idea" over and over, please feel free.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:08 PM on April 24, 2007 [7 favorites]


Look - I wanted to ask this question a few days ago, but thought better of it. I explicitly emailed Jessamyn asking for her opinion and go head. I had the blessing of a moderator, and honestly, I could give a shit less if you think this is a bad idea. I had a question I wanted answered, and so far, you're the only person who's disregarded my one request to not give me a lesson on how this is a bad idea.

So, WTF? I expected the MeTa, but after 10 comments? Jesus.
posted by plaidrabbit at 2:09 PM on April 24, 2007


I'm pro-gun control. I hate handguns. I don't think concealed weapons should be legal.

But the question is well phrased and well within the AskMe purview. The addendum at the end is phrased in such a way as to minimize any potential backlash.

I think the question is fine.
posted by lekvar at 2:10 PM on April 24, 2007 [6 favorites]


I'm not a big fan of guns, and am an even lesser fan of concealed carry laws. But the guy asked for specific advice about how to carry a concealed weapon, not if it was a good idea to do so. It was not ambiguous. I read the thread, but had nothing to contribute that was on-topic, so I didn't.
posted by rtha at 2:12 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


plaidrabbit, in general, MetaFilter is anti-gun, so this reaction was pretty much unavoidable. I thought your question was going well considering it took 10 replies to get a meta callout.
posted by knave at 2:13 PM on April 24, 2007


I think guns are one of the greatest threats to the health and safety of Americans, that concealed weapons laws are idiotic, and that anyone who thinks that carrying a concealed weapon is doing something to enhance their own safety and/or the safety of others is not only laughably wrong, but also a complete lunatic.

I also think this question was well thought-out, perfectly acceptable within the guidelines of AskMe, and very clearly and fairly asked that responders not get into an ethical debate about handguns. So I took a deep breath and moved right along.
posted by googly at 2:15 PM on April 24, 2007 [8 favorites]


I'm not for concealed carry (mostly) but I thought the question was fine. The asker wasn't asking to do anything illegal.
posted by drezdn at 2:16 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Hey, part of the fun is thinking that someone might realize that you are concealing a handgun. Wear the shorts and t-shirt!
posted by found missing at 2:18 PM on April 24, 2007


Just wondering about these "concealed" permits... Does the permit allow you to conceal the gun you're carrying, or does it demand that you conceal it (so as to not cause a "person with a gun!" panic)?
posted by CKmtl at 2:19 PM on April 24, 2007


What a stupid call-out. The question isn't about what people think of guns.
posted by puke & cry at 2:19 PM on April 24, 2007 [4 favorites]


I was fully expecting the gun-hating whackjobs to come out of their caves, but was pleasantly surprised to see that it didn't happen.

You know, it's probably one of the best ask mefi questions that I've seen all day.
posted by drstein at 2:20 PM on April 24, 2007


You know, I was thinking of strapping some machetes to my hands. Is there an orchestra out there I can conduct?
Christ.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 2:22 PM on April 24, 2007 [3 favorites]


I'd pay money to watch a conductor direct an orchestra with machetes. Maybe there would be some kind of threat of dismemberment for missed notes.

/tacky
posted by Burhanistan at 2:23 PM on April 24, 2007


Word. Gun-hating whackjobs cause so much violence in our society.
posted by found missing at 2:23 PM on April 24, 2007


Given the events of last week, it is really inappropriate to "moderate" comments to this question, which announces (vaguely and without details or motive) a course of action that could very well be dangerous to public health.

And is also well within the law and askme guidelines.

If we're going to be arguing about "public health", maybe we should avoid censoring honest questions asked in an effort to avoid a situation in which the public health might be affected. Or, you know, we could pretend as if nobody nice ever carries guns blah blah idiotic blah blah lunatic blah blah we're in denial.
posted by vorfeed at 2:25 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


You know, I was thinking of strapping some machetes to my hands. Is there an orchestra out there I can conduct?

Can I put in a request for some Switchblade Symphony?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:25 PM on April 24, 2007


Just wondering about these "concealed" permits... Does the permit allow you to conceal the gun you're carrying, or does it demand that you conceal it (so as to not cause a "person with a gun!" panic)?

In the US, it all depends on state law (and also city laws, in some places). So, the classic, "it depends."
posted by Forktine at 2:26 PM on April 24, 2007


Is it wrong that I scan the thread and make a note of who carries a gun, so I never make the mistake of pissing them off at a meetup?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:27 PM on April 24, 2007 [4 favorites]


Given the events of last week, it is really inappropriate...

You ever stop to think that the events of last week might be why somebody might decide to carry a weapon?

CKmtl: It depends on the state. In many states anybody can carry a gun openly (AK, ME, and PA come to mind). In those states, the permit allows you to conceal the weapon. Interestingly, Philadelphia has a ordinance that prohibits all open carry, making concealed carry your only option.

In other states, the "brandishing" laws are written in such a way that carrying a gun in an unconcealed holster is illegal, so a CCW is the only way to carry a gun at all. In these states, the CCW requires that you conceal the weapon.
posted by Netzapper at 2:27 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


By thw way you phrased to comment, you *knew* it was likely to be deleted and now you come over to Metatalk and get outraged about it?
posted by vacapinta at 2:27 PM on April 24, 2007


I don't think the OP should carry a gun around either. So I moved on and didn't comment in the thread! See, easy solution.
posted by grouse at 2:27 PM on April 24, 2007


I was fully expecting the gun-hating whackjobs to come out of their caves

We have, but, oddly enough, mostly in favor of the question.
posted by lekvar at 2:27 PM on April 24, 2007


The only problem I have with the question is the excessive capitalization.
posted by ldenneau at 2:28 PM on April 24, 2007 [3 favorites]


You ever stop to think that the events of last week might be why somebody might decide to carry a weapon?

Exactly. Which makes it half as well thought out and three times as fucking stupid.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 2:30 PM on April 24, 2007


I'd be in that orchestra, as long as you don't mind awful playing and I can sit in the back.
posted by edgeways at 2:31 PM on April 24, 2007


'kay, I'll come out of my cave just long enough to say that I think it's hilarious/terrifying that there are places in which carrying guns is so normal that your question is about what clothes are best to wear with it/hide it.
Astounding.
posted by chococat at 2:31 PM on April 24, 2007 [5 favorites]


I hate guns.

I thought this was one of AskMe's best questions. I loved the well composed responses from gun carriers.

This call-out is fucking stupid.
posted by docpops at 2:32 PM on April 24, 2007


This is one of the stupidest callouts I can remember. Dangerous to public health? Take it up with the government - the guy's asking about a legal activity. If you don't approve, DON'T CLICK ON THE DAMN THREAD.

And one whackjob murderer doesn't make it any more or less a legitimate question (hell, if anything, how do I arm myself for personal protection in this gun-ridden country is even more relevant now).
posted by Dasein at 2:32 PM on April 24, 2007


I don't understand why a "waiting period" was advised, after the Virginia Tech massacre, before this question was posted.

He's talking about legal carrying of a handgun. Whether some lunatic just shot a bunch of people with handguns, seems entirely irrelevant to the question of how legally to conceal your own handgun.
posted by jayder at 2:33 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


The most recent issue of Reason magazine has an interesting article on "public health" and how it has come to include personal choices that have nothing to do with disease, aka gun control.
posted by Falconetti at 2:34 PM on April 24, 2007


plaidrabbit, in general, MetaFilter is anti-gun, so this reaction was pretty much unavoidable.

It is not unavoidable. MetaFilter is also generally regarded as anti-stupid; the expectation that people show some self-control, on the green especially, is not contingent upon the subject matter, even if the actual presence of said restraint seems sometimes to be.

I can not imagine a less inappropriate gun-related question being post to AskMe. A simple and polite disclaimer against out-of-line anti-gun rhetoric is only provocation to spout anti-gun rhetoric in IronyLand.

Driving a car is dangerous to public health. So is drinking. So is fucking. So am I when I'm in a bad mood.

One of these days I should register an extra account named "yeah, what jessamyn said".
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:34 PM on April 24, 2007 [7 favorites]


I was fully expecting the gun-hating whackjobs to come out of their caves. . .

Most of us gun-hating whackjobs don't live in caves. We live in nice houses and apartments in large, prosperous cities in which the populations (primarily) of our economically disadvantaged neighbors are being systematically wiped out by gun violence. You cave-dwellers mostly love your guns and say all kids of ridiculous shit about your "cold dead hands" and needing M16s and teflon ammunition to hunt deer.
posted by The Bellman at 2:35 PM on April 24, 2007 [10 favorites]


It may be irrelevant, but it does involve a modicum of tact.
posted by edgeways at 2:35 PM on April 24, 2007


Is it ok for me to say here that I would like to recommend to the OP that he conceal the gun up his ass? That would be my recommendation, but I'm sure it would get deleted in the Green.

I don't really mean it - as I don't have any real problem w/ people with CWP's... but it would just be really FUN to say!
posted by matty at 2:36 PM on April 24, 2007


Saucy Intruder, I like you. Your name makes me laugh every time I see it. That is, it started doing so once I started Property. Which is why it makes me sad to have to point out that your machete-conductor example, while probably making for a great Tim Burton movie, is a really inaccurate analogy for what you're trying to say here.
posted by Partial Law at 2:36 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I guess I picked the wrong week to ask about concealing improvised explosive devices.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:37 PM on April 24, 2007 [6 favorites]


while probably making for a great Tim Burton movie

Oh great, I can see it now: Machete Man: Conduct On- THE MUSICAL. Broadway 2010. Buy tickets now.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:38 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Echoing what everyone is saying about your conflating the poster, someone with a permit to carry a gun, with a fucking psychopath that massacred a bunch of people. And your pronouncement that it's "inappropriate to 'moderate' comments" because of "public health" concerns is absurd.
posted by puke & cry at 2:38 PM on April 24, 2007


I don't understand why a "waiting period" was advised, after the Virginia Tech massacre, before this question was posted.

I wasn't part of that conversation, but if I had been I'd have suggested the same thing. Mefi (as a subset of America-centric conversation in general) has been pretty high-strung about guns the last week or so. that's not to say that the question would have been incorrect in any absolute sense last Wednesday, but it'd definitely be more likely to produce heat instead of light, and capture a more emotional and less useful set of responses.

Giving something a few days to cool down can do wonders; if it's not urgent, there's no real reason not to.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:38 PM on April 24, 2007


'kay, I'll come out of my cave just long enough to say that I think it's hilarious/terrifying that there are places in which carrying guns is so normal that your question is about what clothes are best to wear with it/hide it.
Astounding.


Chococat --- your reasoning is fallacious. You are way too eager to leap to a "frightening" conclusion, when the question does not justify your leap.

How does the fact that he is asking how to conceal a weapon imply that he lives in a place "in which carrying guns is ... normal"?

Couldn't the situation, just as likely, be that he lives in a place where carrying weapons is so unusual, that he knows nobody who actually carries a gun, so he has turned to AskMe to ask the question?
posted by jayder at 2:40 PM on April 24, 2007


MetaFilter: a really inaccurate analogy for what you're trying to say here
posted by PugAchev at 2:40 PM on April 24, 2007


What, exactly, are you calling out here? That the asker requested that people not shit in his thread, or that you did anyway and got called on it?
posted by 0xFCAF at 2:41 PM on April 24, 2007 [5 favorites]


Given the events of last week, it is really inappropriate to use dead kids to justify your whiny MeTatalk post.

Yes, yes it is!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:41 PM on April 24, 2007 [5 favorites]


hell, if anything, how do I arm myself for personal protection in this gun-ridden country is even more relevant now

How about hand grenades? Tastefully concealed, of course.
posted by timeistight at 2:42 PM on April 24, 2007


The zero-tolerance moderation of AskMe is one of the reasons I gave up answering questions. The whole place is a fraud of joyless forced civility that I don't want to be part of.
posted by cillit bang at 2:42 PM on April 24, 2007 [5 favorites]


::shoots cillit bang dead::
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:43 PM on April 24, 2007 [4 favorites]


Unless the poster is explicitly asking for help doing something illegal (and it is extremely clear from this question that CC is perfectly legal in the state where the poster lives), then it doesn't need to be Meta-ed. Or judged.

AskMe is for answers, not sermons. Sometimes they're required for a given question ("Is this a dumb thing to do?" comes to mind) but this was a specific request for specific help with a specific problem. If you don't like the problem, answer another question.
posted by Malor at 2:43 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


should have previewed: cillit, somehow, I think it manages to soldier on without you. :)
posted by Malor at 2:44 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


I think AskMe querists should be allowed to delete answers from their posted threads.
posted by cribcage at 2:46 PM on April 24, 2007


And bellman, somewhere between those two extremes -- right between the gangbangers and the right wing wackos, is where this question sits.

The OP doesn't talk about his occupation, but there's lots of occupations where he could be recognized while weeding his front yard by one of his less-hinged "clients" -- i.e. working in mental health facilities where guys like the dude who shot up Virginia Tech get sent, or a halfway house for druggies. If he lives anywhere remotely near 'work', there's a decent chance that one of the people he's dealt with professionaly could get violent and come after him while he's out on the town. I'd pack too if that was the case.

And I'll third the "What jessaymn said". Someday, someone's going to have to do a study on "gun-phobia" ... the fact is that out of all the causes of death, you've got like a .007% chance of dying from being assaulted with a weapon -- and that includes knives, blunt objects, cars, skullfuckings, and every other type of assault, not just guns. So the whole outrage about guns being "dangerous to public health" is bullshit.

Of course, it's also not as easy to get enraged about cancer or heart disease, neither of which are a prized posession of a group that stereotypically is ideologically opposite from the majority of MeFi's population.

Just like the need for gun control, I think we need to look at the deeper and more complex issue.
posted by SpecialK at 2:46 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


Hey, I got taglined! Fancy!
posted by Partial Law at 2:47 PM on April 24, 2007


[NOT QUERIST]
posted by found missing at 2:47 PM on April 24, 2007


zero-tolerance moderation

From the other side of the fence, I have to tell you that the number looks a good bit bigger than zero. Zero tolerance for completely out-of-line non-answers, sure.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:48 PM on April 24, 2007


By far, the worst part of any of these threads was jessamyn's snide:
Driving a car is dangerous to public health. So is drinking. So is fucking. So am I when I'm in a bad mood.
That comment is awful because it makes a significant statement about gun control, but in a forum where debate on the matter would be unwelcome.

You should know better, Jessamyn.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 2:49 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I wonder what MeFi would be like if obtaining banning privileges required only a cursory background check through your recent comments and a 3 day waiting period.
posted by hoverboards don't work on water at 2:50 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


The zero-tolerance moderation of AskMe is one of the reasons I gave up answering questions.

There's plenty of tolerance. As an example, DU is allowed to give the worst possible answers in every single thread, and nobody ever says "you know what, DU has never made a useful answer, ever. We should shut him the fuck up."

Well, nobody with moderator privileges anyway.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 2:51 PM on April 24, 2007 [8 favorites]


in a forum where debate on the matter would be unwelcome

I don't get this at all. Can you elaborate?
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:52 PM on April 24, 2007


in a forum where debate on the matter would be unwelcome.

What are you taking about? It's here in MetaTalk, where such discussion is supposed to take place and in fact is taking place. It's a direct response to the OPs assertion in this thread. I don't even understand what you are objecting to.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:53 PM on April 24, 2007


This is one of the worst complaints about a thread I have read.

The lead post seems to imply that Saucy Intruder has the right to bitch out the question asker without moderation because guns are bad.

Please.

He doesn't need to explain his motive or to justify his choice to carry in any way. But the concern for the 'public health' is touching all the same.
posted by BigSky at 2:54 PM on April 24, 2007


good thing at least half of the "worst callout ever" police squad aren't packing.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 2:55 PM on April 24, 2007


This thread isn't about gun control, it's about whether the question belongs, and whether Saucy Intruder's objections are reasonable.

Your comment was a standard pro-gun preaching point.

There's no reasonable way to respond to it, as nobody is in this thread for the purposes of discussing the overarching theme of gun control.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 2:56 PM on April 24, 2007


+1 BigSky
posted by SpecialK at 2:56 PM on April 24, 2007


SpecialK: And bellman, somewhere between those two extremes -- right between the gangbangers and the right wing wackos, is where this question sits.

As far as I can tell, The Bellman was responding to drstein's snarky use of "gun-hating whackjobs", not the AskMe OP.
posted by CKmtl at 2:56 PM on April 24, 2007


Bang bang, he got shot down
Bang bang, he hit the ground
Bang bang, that awful sound
Bang bang, TPS shot him epon-hysterically down.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 2:57 PM on April 24, 2007


This thread would be more entertaining if there were more guns.
posted by smorange at 2:57 PM on April 24, 2007


I think AskMe querists should be allowed to delete answers from their posted threads.

I disagree. AskMe is as much a resource for the community as it is for the querist. It's not the querist's place to dictate pre hoc the desired answers he or she is looking for.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:58 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I wonder what MeFi would be like if obtaining banning privileges required only a cursory background check through your recent comments and a 3 day waiting period.

Probably not much different, if the punishment for unjustified bans included getting banned yourself.
posted by knave at 2:58 PM on April 24, 2007


I was going to ask about korean takeout restaurants, but "given the events of last week," I figured it was innapropriate.
posted by signal at 2:58 PM on April 24, 2007 [3 favorites]


good thing at least half of the "worst callout ever" police squad aren't packing.

They've got armadillos in their trousers.
posted by joseph_elmhurst at 2:59 PM on April 24, 2007


>Your comment was a standard pro-gun preaching point.
> There's no reasonable way to respond to it, as nobody is in this thread for the purposes of discussing the overarching theme of gun control.

And Saucy Intruder included a standard anti-gun preaching point in her callout, which opened that part of the topic up for discussion.
posted by SpecialK at 3:00 PM on April 24, 2007


[QUEERIST]
posted by ericb at 3:00 PM on April 24, 2007


SpecialK , actually assault with firearms caused about 7% of deaths (2003)
posted by edgeways at 3:00 PM on April 24, 2007


a standard anti-gun preaching point in her callout

Which is what?
BTW, I only throw like a girl.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 3:01 PM on April 24, 2007


There's no reasonable way to respond to it, as nobody is in this thread for the purposes of discussing the overarching theme of gun control.

MeTa is, notably, not as topic-driven as AskMe. The reasonable way to respond to it that is escaping you is to respond reasonably to it.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:01 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I wonder what MeFi would be like if obtaining banning privileges required only a cursory background check through your recent comments and a 3 day waiting period.

Probably not much different, if the punishment for unjustified bans included getting banned yourself.


And if you were banned for unjustified banning, you couldn't then buy another account and come back. Unless you're a buddhist, you don't get do-overs on real life. ;)
posted by SpecialK at 3:01 PM on April 24, 2007


MeTa is, notably, not as reason-driven as AskMe.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:02 PM on April 24, 2007


which is still a small number comparatively, but not insignificant.
posted by edgeways at 3:02 PM on April 24, 2007


it's about whether the question belongs

No, it's about whether it was inappropriate to moderate SI's comment in a thread that SI thought was inappropriate. SI thought the thread was inappropriate because it was a danger to public health. Maybe I didn't connect enough dots: AskMeFi also has a ton of threads on public-health-ish topics and threats to same, such as driving and fucking and drinking. Thus SI's assertion that this is a public health issue is far-fetched.

I'm not pro-gun, I'm anti anti-gun-hysteria and I live someplace where guns are more of a fact of life so I'm more used to them possibly.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 3:03 PM on April 24, 2007


SpecialK , actually assault with firearms caused about 7% of deaths (2003)

Huh? I'm looking at your link and I don't see that anywhere, except that possibly assault with firearm constituted 7% of all assaults.
posted by knave at 3:03 PM on April 24, 2007


Shooty McGunpants? Are you totally fucking high or what? What the fuck is wrong with you?
posted by loquacious at 3:04 PM on April 24, 2007 [4 favorites]


In fact, the pretty picture says your odds of dying by firearm assault are 1 in 314 (0.3%).
posted by knave at 3:05 PM on April 24, 2007


a fraud of joyless forced civility
Odd, you describe it so appositely, but I didn't see you at our last management meeting, cillit bang
posted by Abiezer at 3:05 PM on April 24, 2007


SpecialK , actually assault with firearms caused about 7% of deaths (2003)

Edgeway, instead of being so eager to call my point out, go back and read that -- your link says deaths due to injury. However, between heart disease, obesity, emphysema, and other diseases and "public health" issues, you've really only got a .007 chance of dying -- 17,000 of 2,448,000 or so.

Strangely, that agrees with your number. Who woulda thunk?
posted by SpecialK at 3:06 PM on April 24, 2007


I have little to no love for handguns, legal and practical arguments for why private citizens in a democracy need to have them. I also don't love the virulent and very common "STFU and get out of the thread" strain of AskMe militancy. I think, like cillit bang, that it makes the green an often extraordinarily tiresome place.

But it's been decided. AskMe is not for political warfare. That's the way the community wants it and your comments, Saucy Intruder (always loved that handle, btw) were a full-frontal political assault on the question. And you know it. Whether you choose to couch it in euphemistic "public health" language or not, you essentially rode in, both with your comment but especially with this thread and said "fuck you for asking this question, it makes me sick" which is, needless to say, out of bounds.

This, SI, from a person who agrees with you in principal and who is also enraged about the relative silence (in big public fora) regarding gun control issues in the past two weeks.
posted by kosem at 3:08 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


(Note, not a math major. I think it' s .007%. My calculator spit out some weird data when I asked it the question.)
posted by SpecialK at 3:08 PM on April 24, 2007


Are you totally fucking high or what? What the fuck is wrong with you?

Mother??
posted by Saucy Intruder at 3:09 PM on April 24, 2007


I think, like cillit bang, that it makes the green an often extraordinarily tiresome place.

And I think it makes the green one of the most useful resources on the planet. Go figure.
posted by knave at 3:10 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


SI's assertion that this is a public health issue is far-fetched.

Driving, fucking and drinking are behaviors that have epidemiological consequences, no doubt, but few would equate the deliberate shooting death of another human being with 99.9% accidental causes of death, which are a side effect of driving an automobile, having sex or drinking alcohol. The only purpose (wrt the question) to the use of a gun is killing or badly hurting another living person. Of course it's a public health issue.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:10 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


troglodytes! ha-ha!
posted by taliaferro at 3:11 PM on April 24, 2007


I wonder what MeFi would be like if obtaining banning privileges required only a cursory background check through your recent comments and a 3 day waiting period.

Much, much quieter.
posted by timeistight at 3:15 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


The only purpose (wrt the question) to the use of a gun is killing or badly hurting another living person...

In self defense, a pretty reasonable thing to do, IMO. The disarmed students of VT were unable to do what was legally possible just a few years earlier, and somehow that's a good thing?
posted by knave at 3:15 PM on April 24, 2007


knave: I think that's right, too. Its usefulness derives from its on-topicness, and what I consider to be joy-killing moderation is probably necessary. Which is why you don't see me schrying gevalt about it. But I never was a schryer.

Also, I think guns are a public health issue, too. But not in the conventional sense, and adopting that position is a strong political statement which requires exposition, probably not in the green.
posted by kosem at 3:16 PM on April 24, 2007


Vest up, everyone!
posted by Dizzy at 3:17 PM on April 24, 2007


Adding to the chorus: I'm pretty much totally anti-gun-ownership, yet thought the question was fine. In fact, I was pretty impressed by the non-inflammatory tone. (And Netzapper, the next time i see you at a Meetup, I will ask you if that's a harmonica in your pocket.)

Tacos, Saucy was the one who brought up the "guns are a public health issue" thing. Jessamyn referenced the opposing "dangerous to public health" rhetoric, but acknowledges that she's being flip. Check the context. Meanwhile, you seem to be telling her that she's not doing this "commenting in MeTa" thing correctly. Huh?
posted by desuetude at 3:20 PM on April 24, 2007


few would equate the deliberate shooting death of another human being with 99.9% accidental causes of death, which are a side effect of driving an automobile, having sex or drinking alcohol. The only purpose (wrt the question) to the use of a gun is killing or badly hurting another living person.

Are you saying plaidrabbit is going to deliberately shoot someone? Because that's what SI was calling out, the specific case of one specific person carrying a gun.

You can also use a gun to scare the crap out of someone, without killing or injuring them.
posted by 23skidoo at 3:21 PM on April 24, 2007


Most of us gun-hating whackjobs don't live in caves. We live in nice houses and apartments in large, prosperous cities in which the populations (primarily) of our economically disadvantaged neighbors are being systematically wiped out by gun violence.

I can't wait until one of your disadvantaged neighbors burglarizes your nice apartment.
posted by jonmc at 3:24 PM on April 24, 2007 [6 favorites]


From a public health point of view, the discussion of fanny-packs and cops' attitudes toward them put that thread firmly on the plus side.
posted by jamjam at 3:24 PM on April 24, 2007


Oh, sorry, I missed the part where plaidrabbit wasn't planning to put any bullets in the gun.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 3:24 PM on April 24, 2007


Everyone is clearly entitled to their opinion on private gun ownership and concealed carry - I have some serious ambivalence on the matter myself - but of all the reasons to be concerned there's no cause to conflate CC with the VT massacre (or the NASA shooting or...).

As far as I know there's not a state in the union that issues permits without requiring training. I think I have a somewhat unique prespective on this, having been through the armed security guard class about four years ago (don't ask) and the NRA-sponsored CCW class last night.

For one thing, I think equating the actions of a whacko with people who set out to undertake legal training and licensing is questionable. You can certainly be skeptical that additional armed individuals in that mix would have made things less bloody, but none of the people in that class last night (or the ASG class I took long ago) were there because they were interested in shooting people indiscriminately. They opened their wallets to the tune of $100+ to do what was necessary to comply with the law when there's nothing stopping a person from simply showing a pistol in their pocket and walking around without state sanction.

Beyond that, the message repeated over and over again in both last night's class for private citizens and the class I took for licensed security guards was this: YOU ARE NOT A POLICE OFFICER. YOU DO NOT HAVE THE TRAINING OR LEGAL RIGHT TO ENGAGE IN AN ARMED CONFRONTATION. IF AT ALL POSSIBLE YOU SHOULD WITHDRAW TO A SAFE LOCATION AND CALL 911.

Personally I think it's a shame every gun owner doesn't get that training, and their opposition to mandatory training is one of the reasons I don't think I could ever bring myself to join the NRA, despite the fact that I sometimes target shoot at their range and think very highly of their training courses. Personally I am concerned by the idea of a lot more people armed and about, but having now been through two different classes I am on the fence if I think it would be worth it to have more people with that training.
posted by phearlez at 3:25 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


there's lots of occupations where he could be recognized while weeding his front yard by one of his less-hinged "clients"

The OP is a "law student." And lawyers who deal with violent criminals are frequently threatened or attacked by the people they deal with. Prosecutors and defense attorneys whose clients feel they weren't adequately defended or were sold out. (Frequently meaning relative to other occupations.) Which is why states/cities that are loathe to issue CCW permits routinely make exceptions for lawyers (and judges, and police).
posted by Martin E. at 3:25 PM on April 24, 2007


knave: The disarmed students of VT were unable to do what was legally possible just a few years earlier, and somehow that's a good thing?

According to that wiki, the two 'armed students' were also law-enforcement types, who were presumably trained how to take down armed suspects / assailants. I'm not sure it's 100% correct to assume a regular Joe or Joan Student would react the same way, just because they have a gun.

Not that that really has anything to do with the question...
posted by CKmtl at 3:26 PM on April 24, 2007


Oh, sorry, I missed the part where plaidrabbit wasn't planning to put any bullets in the gun.

I guess that was right after the part I missed where a loaded gun has to be fired.
posted by 23skidoo at 3:26 PM on April 24, 2007


Y'all make a solid point in noting that the OP specifically asked not to get into any sort of debate on the merits of carrying concealed weapons. But I think the request itself is almost a challenge to those of us who, like SaucyIntruder, were made extremely uncomfortable by the question.

While I appreciate that the OP waited some time before posting, I simply don't think that's a long enough time given the magnitute of what happened, and I found the question infuriating. Before I even got to Saucy's link over to here, I was upset and angry that someone would ask this question, and while it may have gone a bit too far, I think Saucy's response was pretty much in line with what I would have wanted someone to say.

Seeing the reaction over here has done little to make me feel better. In particular, I am appalled at the poster who noted "I was fully expecting the gun-hating whackjobs to come out of their caves." I mean, jesus, we're a week after a bloody massacre and nobody is talking about gun control. The pro-gun lobby seems to have the issue pretty much under their control. Gloating ridiculous crap like this just adds salt to what are still fresh bullet wounds.

In any event, while I'm a bit torn on whether the comment should have been moderated, I certainly applaud Saucy for pointing out another option: Just don't do it.
posted by saladpants at 3:26 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I guess the question is fine, although a little creepy, somehow.

I guess I try and gear the question to the audience; since I know a lot of coding folks are on here I don't worry about asking a question about coding (even if it's 'just' CSS). But surely if someone's got a specifically specialized question that's guarenteed to kind of freak most people out about - oh, I don't know, gun holsters? - you'd go to a more niche kind of community - I'm thinking there are no shortage of gun forums online, right? Not all questions here have to be lucky charms and rainbows, but it might help to gear questions to an appropriate forum. If the folks here are too left wing, pro gun control, well... you can always ask for your 5 bucks back, right?
posted by rmm at 3:28 PM on April 24, 2007


I don't know why people continue to have this debate. I, and others, railed many times against the idea that a question's premise should be accepted without question by those responding--and were soundly rebuked not only by the moderators but by the majority of people that responded to that line of inquiry. I'm sure there are others like myself that find it somewhat dubious to completely negate dissent as per an AskMe question's premise (especially when so many "tough love" answers are marked as best answers in interpersonal relationship threads). However, the matter is essentially settled as a point of debate, so belaboring the point is not only useless, but really quite annoying.

The best--and only--recourse is to completely ignore threads like that, lest you become one of those hang-wringing types that spend all their time railing against the evils of Metafilter. Whenever I find myself unduly worked up over a MeFi issue, I remind myself that Metafilter is 90% fantastic and 10% utterly, soul-crushingly annoying, and I can't accept that balance, I'm going to end up overdosing on pain meds and red wine before my thirtieth birthday.
posted by The God Complex at 3:30 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Sorry, "if" I can't accept that balance. There really should be a brain-check function coded into Firefox that goes off whenever your brain gets ahead of your fingers and you miss an important word!
posted by The God Complex at 3:31 PM on April 24, 2007


The disarmed students of VT were unable to do what was legally possible just a few years earlier, and somehow that's a good thing?

If gun control is seen as a public health issue, basically you have people walking around who can very easily hurt themselves and others without much effort.

At least with driving, we have licenses and policing of public highways and roadways to ensure compliance with responsible driving practices, as well as financial responsibilty for the vehicle.

With fucking and drinking, we have age of consent and serious penalities for non-compliance, both for the facilitator and violator. If you deliberately give someone HIV, you can be tried for murder.

We have very little enforceable infrastructure in place for responsible gun ownership beyond cleaning up dead bodies, whether for self-defense or otherwise, and so putting deadly weapons into people's hands is entirely like knowingly encouraging TB patients to walk around unquarantined, infecting as many people as possible. These consequences were demonstrated more than adequately by the fact that Cho was able to obtain weaponry despite chronic mental health issues.

That said, consideration of this as a public health matter is different from a discussion about community etiquette. But there are certainly disease-like consequences from arming the populace without any restrictions, especially from arming mentally unstable people, and a comparison with unrelated behaviors doesn't quite work.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:32 PM on April 24, 2007 [3 favorites]


But I think the request itself is almost a challenge to those of us who, like SaucyIntruder, were made extremely uncomfortable by the question.

Not everything is about you, Mulder.
posted by phearlez at 3:33 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I'm going to end up overdosing on pain meds and red wine before my thirtieth birthday.

If you want to overdose, I recommend vicodin and whiskey over pain meds and red wine. I mean, go out in style, man.
posted by jonmc at 3:33 PM on April 24, 2007


rmm, that objection has been raised in the past, but AskMe has continually shown it has a knowledgeable, intelligent group of gun owners. I'd consider other forums as well, but I wouldn't categorize AskMe as incapable in this regard.
posted by knave at 3:35 PM on April 24, 2007


As far as I know there's not a state in the union that issues permits without requiring training.

Alaska and Vermont both allow anyone (with a clean criminal record, no history of mental illness, who aren't drunk, etc) to carry a concealed handgun without applying for a permit or undergoing any kind of training. (And, curiously, Alaska also issues permits so that an Alaskan resident visiting a state with reciprocal-permit-agreement with Alaska will be able to carry with a permit that is honored in that state).

their [the NRA's] opposition to mandatory training...

I'm not overly familiar with the NRA, but I would imagine their opposition to mandatory training along the lines you mention (ie when lethal force is legal and called for) is because the majority of gun owners own guns for sporting reasons (so this instruction would be superfluous) with home protection as a pleasant side-effect, or for home protection where the rules are typically vastly different (and most state's laws much more forgiving) than use away from home.
posted by Martin E. at 3:38 PM on April 24, 2007


But I think the request itself is almost a challenge to those of us who, like SaucyIntruder, were made extremely uncomfortable by the question.

How is that request different from the requests that are made any time a conservative hotbutton issue comes up, like abortion or prayer in school?! Then, the requests not to turn it into a politically charged debate MUST be honored -- but god forbid anyone bring a liberal hotbutton issue up, because then it's a challenge!
posted by SpecialK at 3:38 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


And I think it makes the green one of the most useful resources on the planet. Go figure.

Yeah, but only because it's successfully turned its users into question-answering robots.
posted by cillit bang at 3:38 PM on April 24, 2007


I'm going to end up overdosing on pain meds and red wine

Hey that's me most nights -- especially when I drop in to visit MeFi.
posted by ericb at 3:40 PM on April 24, 2007


cillit, there are a million places on the internet, including the blue and the grey, where you can argue until your fingers fall off. Why do we need one more?
posted by knave at 3:41 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Yeah, but only because it's successfully turned its users into question-answering robots.

Why is that a bad thing?
posted by hoverboards don't work on water at 3:42 PM on April 24, 2007


yes, SpecialK, because MeFi is such a rightwing bastion. Me, Matt, jess, and cortex were just discussing that on the way to our John Birch Society meeting yesterday. I understand, you're thirsting for a 'look! I'm being repressed!' moment. You'll have to try harder.
posted by jonmc at 3:42 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


We have very little enforceable infrastructure in place for responsible gun ownership beyond cleaning up dead bodies, whether for self-defense or otherwise, and so putting deadly weapons into people's hands is entirely like knowingly encouraging TB patients to walk around unquarantined, infecting as many people as possible.

What. The. Fuck? So this whole discussion about what concealed carry permits are and do, and what kind of training is required and how you need to take that training frequently was COMPLETELY LOST ON YOU?

And on top of that, teenagers steal cars that they're not licensed to drive all the time and kill people. And all we can do then too is clean up the bodies.
posted by SpecialK at 3:42 PM on April 24, 2007


Jessamyn: let me connect the dots for you:

Stated purpose of the thread:

it's about whether it was inappropriate to moderate SI's comment in a thread that SI thought was inappropriate.

Your comment on gun control:

driving a car is dangerous to public health. So is drinking. So is fucking. So am I when I'm in a bad mood.

I'm anti-hysteria too, but your comment equates the danger of guns to driving, sex and PMS. This is an extremely, and unnecessarily divisive thing to say, in a thread about whether or not some moderation was appropriate.

It takes a strong pro-gun stand in a place where opposing voices cannot argue back, without looking extremely out of place.

You know it was a dumb thing to say, because you felt the need to apologize in the next sentence, when you really should have just used the delete key.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 3:44 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


yes, SpecialK, because MeFi is such a rightwing bastion. Me, Matt, jess, and cortex were just discussing that on the way to our John Birch Society meeting yesterday. I understand, you're thirsting for a 'look! I'm being repressed!' moment. You'll have to try harder.

Actually, it's more of a "Bah, I'm bored with work. Hmn, I have this can of gasoline, and look, there's a fire!" **FWOOSH!**
See? Instant amusement!
posted by SpecialK at 3:44 PM on April 24, 2007


jonmc--
Please send Vicodin and whiskey asap.
I'll pay for postage.
posted by Dizzy at 3:44 PM on April 24, 2007


If you want to overdose, I recommend vicodin and whiskey over pain meds and red wine. I mean, go out in style, man.

Ew, whiskey. Perhaps we can find some common ground. Horse Tranqs and and expensive italian port?
posted by The God Complex at 3:44 PM on April 24, 2007


Whether or not plaidrabbit was going to use bullets is irrelevant. Unless you have some evidence that he is a psychopath or criminal, then his ability to carry a gun, concealed or otherwise, is not in any way the danger that you're making it out to be, certainly not to the "public health." To have jumped in with your arm-waving, hand-wringing anti-gun spiel in a place where it was specifically requested that such digressions not occur was out of place, and Jessamyn was right to pull the plug.
posted by Dreama at 3:45 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I think it' s .007

:pulls out Walther PPK:
posted by Totally Zanzibarin' Ya at 3:46 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I would, Dizzy, put my tongue keeps missing the stamp.
posted by jonmc at 3:46 PM on April 24, 2007


Port is from Portugal.
Vicodin was used by Vikings.
Just saying.
posted by Dizzy at 3:47 PM on April 24, 2007


You don't like whiskey? You pee standing up or sitting down, punk?

I pee sitting down myself, mainly because all the whiskey makes it difficult to aim

Seriously, dude, you must not be drinking the right whiskey. *passes Jamesons*
posted by jonmc at 3:49 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Lemme call my FedEx gal to help with that.
We're burning daylight!
posted by Dizzy at 3:49 PM on April 24, 2007


You're going to lick your FedEx girl? Check with her first, dude. Chicks like that. Decorum and all that shit.
posted by jonmc at 3:51 PM on April 24, 2007


(I used "gal" casually, sans irony. I have become my father.
Has anyone seen my Bermudas and black kneesocks?)
posted by Dizzy at 3:51 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]



In self defense, a pretty reasonable thing to do, IMO. The disarmed students of VT were unable to do what was legally possible just a few years earlier, and somehow that's a good thing?


A lot of reasonable people would argue that a large number of students with guns would simply mean that every campus would have a small number of accidental deaths each year, and a few more drunken murders/attempted murders.

Thus instead of having an occasional 30 person tragedy, there would be frequent 1-2 person tragedies.

Many of these answers could probably be determined using statistical inference from areas with differing gun laws and carry rates, but the NRA has been unwilling to fund anything resembling legitimate research that backs their opinion.

Given the amounts of money they have, that's tantamount to them admitting that they know they're lying.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 3:51 PM on April 24, 2007


cillit, there are a million places on the internet, including the blue and the grey, where you can argue until your fingers fall off. Why do we need one more?

I'm not suggesting threads on the green become arguments, but you should be staying on topic because you want to, not because cortex is standing behind you with an electric cattle prod. I realise this is inevitable for such a popular website, but that doesn't make it any less of a problem.
posted by cillit bang at 3:52 PM on April 24, 2007


I'm not old enough yet to want to develop a strong whiskey habit. I'm still young enough to down Euro and Japanese beers at an alarming rate and not show too many of the belt-line consequences...

But if I'm ever in New York I'll make an exception, just for you ;)
posted by The God Complex at 3:54 PM on April 24, 2007


You can drink and not get fat?
H8t u.
posted by Dizzy at 3:56 PM on April 24, 2007


I'm honored. I also just saw Fudgie The Whale dancing to 50 Cent on TV. I'm not sure whether that's the peak of civilization or merely delerium tremens.
posted by jonmc at 3:58 PM on April 24, 2007


I just read the words and gained ten pounds, jonmc.
Type celery so I can fit back in me Bermudas.
posted by Dizzy at 3:59 PM on April 24, 2007


(also, TGC, whiskey's not about taste. Taste is what you endure to get the wonderful afterburn. Mmm, Jamesons. My ancestors were not the most illustrious people, but they made great hooch.)
posted by jonmc at 4:00 PM on April 24, 2007


In self defense, a pretty reasonable thing to do, IMO. The disarmed students of VT were unable to do what was legally possible just a few years earlier, and somehow that's a good thing?

Of course, one could much more reasonably make the argument that some mentally unbalanced twit shouldn't so easily be able to purchase several handguns in a short--or really any--period of time, and that this is the actual root cause, not the fact that all of the university students weren't armed to the teeth.

Of course, then we wouldn't be echoing NRA talking points, so we'd have to find a new script, or whatever, and possibly question some very antiquated and uniquely American notions about self-defense. So it goes.

But, really, that's so entirely beside the point. If this guy wants to legally pack his heat and needs a safe way to hide it in his shorts, I suggest some sort of garter holster. Case closed.
posted by The God Complex at 4:00 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


Stop dithering!
I thought about Oreos and can't see my feet!
posted by Dizzy at 4:00 PM on April 24, 2007


It takes a strong pro-gun stand in a place where opposing voices cannot argue back, without looking extremely out of place.

When your original assertion finally finishes the slow creep from the unqualified "unwelcome", past "looking extremely out of place", all the way to "basically being kosher for a typical Metatalk thread, esp. as evidenced by the other comments in this very thread and other recent discussions", this comment will start making sense to me. Right now you sound like you're picking a fight with jessamyn, not making a reasonable objection.
posted by cortex (staff) at 4:01 PM on April 24, 2007


Many of these answers could probably be determined using statistical inference from areas with differing gun laws and carry rates...

It's been done, redone, analyzed, and reanalyzed. The National Academy of Sciences (IIRC) called together a special panel to get to the bottom of the net effect...and found that the quite extensive and sophisticated research did not point to a definitive net effect. In other words, to the best of our knowledge, different laws, ownership rates, carry-rates, and so on facilitate some crimes while hindering others and the net effect on public safety is a big fat zero. Ban them all, let everyone have them, or something in between, but the chance of a random person being injured or killed stays pretty much the same.

...but the NRA has been unwilling to fund anything resembling legitimate research that backs their opinion. Given the amounts of money they have, that's tantamount to them admitting that they know they're lying.

No, any research they directly funded would be immediately dismissed as tainted. Thus they'd be throwing money away.
posted by Martin E. at 4:03 PM on April 24, 2007


I have a relative who's a cop. When we go out for dinner or whatever, I always forget he's strapped with a Glock .40.

You can wear a T-shirt btw, but there's a reason off-duty cops often wear those cheesy-ass Hawaiian-style short-sleeve button-downs over them. And why plain-clothes cops buy blazers off the rack. Ill-fitting = less obvious bulges.
posted by bardic at 4:05 PM on April 24, 2007


And why plain-clothes cops buy blazers off the rack. Ill-fitting = less obvious bulges.

I'm sure if you live in Philladelphia, Vegas, New York, or especially Chicago, you could find a tailor that's used to having to account for obvious bulges...
posted by SpecialK at 4:08 PM on April 24, 2007


On my old commute there used to be a gun range in the same strip mall as a roller rink(no joke). I always had a vision of the skaters dithering about the rink to the tune of Swan Lake as the gun buffs expertly picked them off.
posted by jonmc at 4:08 PM on April 24, 2007


Need to conceal a weapon you big pussy? There should be plenty of room in those shorts where your balls are supposed to be.
posted by found missing at 4:13 PM on April 24, 2007


Well, they're not exactly swimming in money either.
posted by bardic at 4:13 PM on April 24, 2007


How is that request different from the requests that are made any time a conservative hotbutton issue comes up, like abortion or prayer in school?!

Well actually, it's very different. Those other issues are ones that don't affect my health, safety, and welfare. You can argue the merits of them one way or another, but in the end, I'm already alive, and abortion has no direct effect on my safety. Neither does school prayer. Concealed weapons? COMPLETELY different. People who carry concealed weapons are at least, debatably, a threat to the safety of those around them. (Yes, I acknowledge, but disagree with, the other viewpoint espoused that concealed weapons make people safer. The point, however, is that the issue is one of public safety, which in my mind makes it very different.)

Moreover, I think that if someone posts a question about having an abortion, it would be legitimate to suggest not having one, for whatever reasons you might espouse. Similarly, here, I don't think there's anything wrong with noting, at least for the record (and less aggressively than SaucyIntruder did), that maybe you shouldn't do it at all.

Lastly, I don't really think this has anything to do with liberal vs conservative, especially in light of the fact that the dems have completely caved on the issue because they seem to think it costs them elections (which it very well may).
posted by saladpants at 4:14 PM on April 24, 2007


Y'all make a solid point in noting that the OP specifically asked not to get into any sort of debate on the merits of carrying concealed weapons. But I think the request itself is almost a challenge to those of us who, like SaucyIntruder, were made extremely uncomfortable by the question.

plaidrabbit shouldn't have had to say anything about an ethical debate; that's not what Ask MetaFilter is for. Just below the window for adding an Ask MetaFilter comment it says, "Please limit comments to answers or help in finding an answer." Saucy Intruder's deleted comment wasn't an answer and wasn't helpful.
posted by kirkaracha at 4:17 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


Then, the requests not to turn it into a politically charged debate MUST be honored -- but god forbid anyone bring a liberal hotbutton issue up, because then it's a challenge!

Still waiting for a challenge
posted by jmd82 at 4:18 PM on April 24, 2007


saladpants, I know people who consider homosexuals to be a threat to public safety, because at some point, God might rain down destruction on our society of sin, like he has in the past. No joke.
posted by knave at 4:22 PM on April 24, 2007


Ask.Metafilter: Where do I carry my Gun when I drop my cat off to get declawed on the way to my son's circumcision. please don't criticize my choices. Just answer the question.
posted by Megafly at 4:23 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


Megafly, declaw the cat then use the removed claw to circumsise your son. Then shoot the cat. I'm here to help.
posted by jonmc at 4:25 PM on April 24, 2007


Megafly, please. Nobody in your hypothetical is mordibly obese member of Critical Mass who used to play lacrosse for Duke.
posted by bardic at 4:28 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


You can drink and not get fat?
H8t u.


I lost over 30 pounds last year during a period of time in which I spent almost every night in bars.

Drinking.

Heavily.

And I'm not even all that young any more.

So if you're going to hate anyone, Dizzy, hate me.
posted by dersins at 4:30 PM on April 24, 2007


Alternately, declaw your son and circumcise your cat. Drink some whiskey and shoot the vet.
posted by Martin E. at 4:30 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Should we eat this shit sandwich? It's been sitting out for nearly three hours.
posted by kosem at 4:30 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


(And who really digs Ayn Rand.)
posted by bardic at 4:30 PM on April 24, 2007


Moreover, I think that if someone posts a question about having an abortion, it would be legitimate to suggest not having one

Not if their question was, ‘I’m at the abortion clinic and I’m trying to figure out if my insurance covers it? Anyone with experience with insurance law in PA?’ which is similar to this question. It’s a “how to?” question, not “should I?” Hell I’m fiercely anti gun and I answered the question, because I thought I could help him solve his specific issue.
posted by French Fry at 4:30 PM on April 24, 2007


bardic, your theory is flawed. Morbidly obese people do not possess the endurance for cycling or lacrosse or the funds to hire strippers.
posted by jonmc at 4:31 PM on April 24, 2007


saladpants, I know people who consider homosexuals to be a threat to public safety, because at some point, God might rain down destruction on our society of sin, like he has in the past. No joke.

Knave - point taken! Safety is totally subjective. But to said homophobe I would argue the numbers.

Number of people in our lifetimes to have died from guns: Many.

Number of people in our lifetimes to have died from god's sulfuric anti-queer wrath? Zero.
posted by saladpants at 4:32 PM on April 24, 2007


As yet another gun-hater who still thought this was a stupid callout, I would just like to say, for the record, that I found the title "Shooty McGunpants" to be kind of funny. So not all is lost.
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 4:33 PM on April 24, 2007


dersins--
so if I have no memory of 3 orders of tater skinz with extra Velveeta my body will give me a pass?
I don't hate you; you're my new personal god.
posted by Dizzy at 4:35 PM on April 24, 2007


Those new Hershey's Heath bar Creme Sandwich cookies are really good. Just so you know.
posted by jonmc at 4:36 PM on April 24, 2007


Yeah, the title of this callout is its best feature.
posted by everichon at 4:36 PM on April 24, 2007


Can't respond; having a tummy tuck.
posted by Dizzy at 4:37 PM on April 24, 2007


By the way, the correct response to the original askmetafilter question is to get one of these bad boys, ala Tom Sivini in From Dusk Till Dawn.
posted by puke & cry at 4:38 PM on April 24, 2007


Number of people in our lifetimes to have died from god's sulfuric anti-queer wrath? Zero.

Um, hello? September 11, Katrina, Hurricanes Gloria and Felix? Pretty clear collection to me.
posted by Snyder at 4:38 PM on April 24, 2007


collection=correlation
posted by Snyder at 4:40 PM on April 24, 2007


What are you tucking your tummy into, Dizzy? I tuck mine into my clavicle, myself.
posted by jonmc at 4:40 PM on April 24, 2007


Just stapled my own stomach but still hungry.
Please advise.
posted by Dizzy at 4:41 PM on April 24, 2007


Number of people in our lifetimes to have died from god's sulfuric anti-queer wrath? Zero.

Some weirdos claimed that the Katrina and the 2004 tsunami were god's anti-queer wrath. Aqueous wrath though, not particularly sulfuric.

Water is the new brimstone, even god has to keep up with the trends.
posted by CKmtl at 4:42 PM on April 24, 2007


Number of people in our lifetimes to have died from god's sulfuric anti-queer wrath? Zero.

Um, hello? September 11, Katrina, Hurricanes Gloria and Felix? Pretty clear collection to me.

Rev. Jerry Falwell: Gays were responsible for 9/11.

Others blamed Katrina on gays.

And "fags" are to blame for the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake an tsunami and the debacle in Iraq.

[QUEERIST]
posted by ericb at 4:52 PM on April 24, 2007


CK--
Ain't the heat, it's the humidity.
posted by Dizzy at 5:03 PM on April 24, 2007


The cultural historians of future generations will laugh until they pee their shiny plastic pants when they stumble on the Metafilter node of their sum-total-of-human-knowledge organic implants, not because we were a reflection of the worst of the stupidity of the cultures to which we belonged, but because we were apparently a reflection of some of the best, but still so desperately dumb.

Guns. Hah.

Still, though: the question was fine, but I hope to hell that (to choose an example) 'how does I p1ra8te softwarez' questions are left untouched in the future, because unless I'm missing something the argument seems to be that if not prohibited somewhere, it's discussable everywhere. And that's a good and fine thing, but picking and choosing which topics to which that rule of thumb can apply seems dishonest to me.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:09 PM on April 24, 2007


Some weirdos claimed that the Katrina and the 2004 tsunami were god's anti-queer wrath.

Rev. Jerry Falwell: Gays were responsible for 9/11.

Others blamed Katrina on gays.

Ha. The discussion is kind of silly by now, but I'd just like to point out that the sources cited here (Jerry Falwell, "others" and "some weirdos") aren't exactly rock solid.

It can proven that people are killed by gun violence. It cannot be proven that any of those events noted above were actually caused by God. And even if we could prove it was God, how do we know that he or she was upset about gays? I think it's far more likely God was extremely upset by:

a) Rev. Jerry Falwell;

b) The Others (you know, from Lost);

c) Some weirdos; or

d) the late 90s dominance of the New York Yankees.
posted by saladpants at 5:10 PM on April 24, 2007


Chococat --- your reasoning is fallacious. You are way too eager to leap to a "frightening" conclusion, when the question does not justify your leap.

jayder, I wasn't reasoning, it was just the vibe I got from the question, and indeed others in this thread have mentioned being
"used" to guns where they are. That's such a foreign thing to me, being from a country where it's not a common thing at all, in any situation. And it is frightening, to me.
but please don't shoot me
posted by chococat at 5:10 PM on April 24, 2007


It can proven that people are killed by gun violence.

Can you prove that a specific person who is allowed to conceal a weapon is more likely to shoot someone than that same specific person who still has his gun, but has to keep it at home?

(upside down answer: No)
posted by 23skidoo at 5:14 PM on April 24, 2007


Is anyone still reading this?

A couple of comments. First, I can't help but think of this question, the associated feedback, and the MeTa. Seems like this is a very similar situation.

Also, I was personally curious as to why someone might choose to carry, and came across this interesting page.
posted by Deathalicious at 5:15 PM on April 24, 2007


I found the question infuriating. Before I even got to Saucy's link over to here, I was upset and angry that someone would ask this question

Aww, poor baby! Walk down the block, quickly, and don't look back.

Jessamyn: let me connect the dots for you

C,WAA.
posted by languagehat at 5:31 PM on April 24, 2007


I think it's far more likely God was extremely upset by: ... d) the late 90s dominance of the New York Yankees.

Correction --

d) the Boston Red Sox winning the 2004 World Series. [NOT KNICKERBOCKERIST]
posted by ericb at 5:32 PM on April 24, 2007


saladpants you're extraordinarily self-centered if you think someone asking about a legal concealed carry permit has any kind of direct affect on your health and well-being. You don't understand the terms of the debate, which is all the more reason why you shouldn't get a chance to comment in the question in question. And it's why Saucy Intruder's comments and call-out are ill-considered. I have to completely agree with SpecialK, precisely the reason to preserve topicality in that question is in order to be able to preserve it in all the other questions where fundamentalist whackjobs want to conflate legal personal choices with a moral bankruptcy that threatens our safety and well-being. Just because you really really really believe yourself to be on the right side of this issue does not mean you should be allowed to subject people to your opinion in inappropriate places.

And, Tacos, I think you're so wrong about this as to be arguing something that makes no sense. Saucy Intruder decided to frame his right to write whatever the fuck he wanted to write and not have it moderated as authorized because gun control is a "public health issue." jessamyn was correct to point out that that way of framing the issue wouldn't hold water with other issues of "public health," and she was right to point out the absurdity of using that excuse to simply politicize a legitimate and legal question. Again, just because you hold an opinion (or Saucy Intruder does), doesn't mean you should be able to vent it in AskMe any time you feel like it. Your ancillary point, such as it is, that this is the wrong forum is belied by the general tenor of discussion here, including your evident lack of hesitation in saying whatever you want to say about what jessamyn wrote. Your argument would be a lot stronger were you forced at any point to confine your comments in this thread to any standard whatsoever.
posted by OmieWise at 5:32 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


(upside down answer: No)

oN? What does that mean?
posted by knave at 5:35 PM on April 24, 2007


rmm : But surely if someone's got a specifically specialized question that's guarenteed to kind of freak most people out about - oh, I don't know, gun holsters? - you'd go to a more niche kind of community - I'm thinking there are no shortage of gun forums online, right? Not all questions here have to be lucky charms and rainbows, but it might help to gear questions to an appropriate forum. If the folks here are too left wing, pro gun control, well... you can always ask for your 5 bucks back, right?

I think this is a bad way of looking at it. I know fuck-all about programming, but I am quite well versed in firearms. I like answering Askme questions, doubly so when it involves something that I have extensive first hand knowledge.

By your criteria, I would prefer to see no more questions on relationships (too touchy feely) or babies (I loath children.) I mean, there are plenty of more appropriate forums for those discussions. Forums that are particularly suited for people to ask those questions. Right?

And therein lay the rub: There might not actually be better forums. Askme has a huge following with people from incredibly diverse backgrounds with knowledge across the board. It would be foolish to direct people to a 'better' more niche place when most of those answers can readily be found here in our very own green.

If you find a question to be out of your area of expertise or on a topic that makes you feel uncomfortable, don't click on the link. Problem solved.
posted by quin at 5:35 PM on April 24, 2007


ericb : [NOT KNICKERBOCKERIST]

Appropo of nothing, I have a shotgun made by Knickerbocker. So, I guess [KNICKERBOCKERIST] fits me.
posted by quin at 5:38 PM on April 24, 2007


MetaTalk: Your argument would be a lot stronger were you forced at any point to confine your comments in this thread to any standard whatsoever.
posted by cgc373 at 5:38 PM on April 24, 2007


Askme has a huge following with people from incredibly diverse backgrounds with knowledge across the board. It would be foolish to direct people to a 'better' more niche place when most of those answers can readily be found here in our very own green.

Precisely why I asked here. I had no axe to grind, and really could have done without the shit-storm that came after.

However, I must say, as my first call-out into the gray (which I, before now, approached with great trepidation), I've had a blast. Everyone else has said everything I wanted to say, or they've privately emailed me via my very consipicuous email in my profile and asked me there. Plus, I got some VERY good answers to the question I asked. And, a hella-fun trainwreck drama-fest to boot.

Love this place. Love it, love it, love it.
posted by plaidrabbit at 5:40 PM on April 24, 2007


Also, I was personally curious as to why someone might choose to carry, and came across this interesting page.
posted by Deathalicious

Bloody hell. Now every time I have a casual conversation with a woman in the street I'm gonna wonder if she is just being friendly because she "has the training and tools to protect herself" in case I turn out to be more than the "casual interlocutor" I "appeared to be."
posted by micayetoca at 5:41 PM on April 24, 2007


Appropo of nothing

I feex:
a (or à) propos.
posted by CKmtl at 5:45 PM on April 24, 2007


what's the old saw about when your only tool is a hammer, everything starts to look like nails?

the arguments about the statistical unlikelihood of being harmed with gun violence actually run counter to the notion that anyone who wishes to should be able to carry a concealed weapon -- if the chances of violence at the hands of another are so slim, what's the rationale for carrying?

here in arizona, which is a right to carry state, anyone can tote an unregistered weapon as long as it's mostly visible, which i find even more odious than concealed weapons, mostly because it's a big 'fuck you' to everybody else.

i was in a chinese restaurant and some douchelord had his out on his table. i have no idea what this guy is like, how rational he will or will not be in the use of his weapon, etc. but his gun sends the message that he has the deadliest upper hand in any dispute. let's say we both go for the last crab leg on the buffet, and then a heated argument develops. he is already de facto intimidating/menacing me by the presence of his gun.

or let's say someone comes in to try to rob the place, and i know that some unknown asswipe has a gun on his person -- what's he going to do with it? will he fire it wildly? will his increase my likelihood of getting shot? i don't want to find out.

it bugs that someone's right to 'feel safe' or whatever trumps my right to not be confronted by random idiots with guns every fucking where i go. so i understand the objection to the question.
posted by Hat Maui at 5:45 PM on April 24, 2007 [3 favorites]


i was in a chinese restaurant

What Chinese restaurant? Was the food good?
posted by Snyder at 5:54 PM on April 24, 2007


...but I hope to hell that (to choose an example) 'how does I p1ra8te softwarez' questions are left untouched in the future...

You do understand that there might be an implicit distinction between legal and illegal activities, right?
posted by 0xFCAF at 5:56 PM on April 24, 2007


I mean, was the place good, nonwithstanding the guy with the gun on his table which is tacky, I think regardless of agreeing to right to carry (I do) or not.
posted by Snyder at 5:56 PM on April 24, 2007


"i was in a chinese restaurant

What Chinese restaurant? Was the food good?"


In Arizona? Are you fucking nuts?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 5:58 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Thanks CKmtl, I knew something looked wrong with that. I can only blame myself for not checking to be sure I had it right.
posted by quin at 5:59 PM on April 24, 2007


Late to the thread, but had to respond to this:

gun-hating whackjobs to come out of their caves

Gun hating whackjobs? Uh ok. You know, of all the things in the world about which to harbor irrational fears (heights, close quarters, success, etc.), an irrational fear of guns and people that carry them as a matter of course for "protection" strikes me as being entirely rational.

I've lived in some pretty dangerous places in my life, and never once did I feel like my situation would be somehow improved or my safety fortified by carrying a weapon. I just can't relate to this mentality, it strikes me as more defect than rational thinking.

That said, that question is perfectly in bounds.
posted by psmealey at 5:59 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


You do understand that there might be an implicit distinction between legal and illegal activities, right?

You did read what I said, didn't you?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:02 PM on April 24, 2007


In Arizona? Are you fucking nuts?

Well, it's not like I can order out to Hong Kong for dim sum or something. And besides, Guilin is pretty good, no worse than what I'd eat in Rhode Island.
posted by Snyder at 6:03 PM on April 24, 2007


You do understand that there might be an implicit distinction between legal and illegal activities, right?

You did read what I said, didn't you?


You do know the purpose and structure of an interrogative, AMIRITE?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:04 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


You do understand that there might be an implicit distinction between legal and illegal activities, right?

You did read what I said, didn't you?


That a question about something that is legal where the asker is is the same as a question that is illegal where the asker is? Was there a different point that is being missed?
posted by Snyder at 6:05 PM on April 24, 2007


You can tell who is carrying on metafilter by keeping an eye on capitalized usernames. More places to hide the piece.
posted by Kwine at 6:07 PM on April 24, 2007


I have now lived in two states where open carry is legal (Florida and Virginia) and I think I have seen douchelords (omg that's awesome and I am appropriating it) such as Hat Maui described maybe twice in 12 years.

My experience as a reluctant gun owner who has spent some small amount of time at the range and in a few classes is that the percentage of people who are complete jackholes about their weapons is not notably more or less than the number of jackholes in any other area people get interested in.

Really, maybe less. At least I find that the gun owners I know - even once they find out I am a gun owner myself - are far far FAR less likely to bend my ear about their particular axes & whetstones than the car, computer, horse, cat, dog or role playing assholes. Those open-carry clowns are, I think, the tiny tip of the iceberg. From what I have seen the people who believe their safety is improved by carrying a pistol would just as soon you never know they have it.

an irrational fear ... strikes me as being entirely rational.

I do not think those words mean what you think they mean.
posted by phearlez at 6:10 PM on April 24, 2007


snyder, it was golden shower ahn yu chinese restaurant on speedway in tucson.
posted by Hat Maui at 6:11 PM on April 24, 2007


Let's keep Rhode Island out of this, please.
posted by Dizzy at 6:15 PM on April 24, 2007


snyder, it was golden shower ahn yu chinese restaurant on speedway in tucson.

You ate at a place called "Golden Shower"?!
posted by CKmtl at 6:17 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


saladpants, nobody gives a sweet fuck whether the question made you uncomfortable. The question wasn't about you, and if you don't like it, you can just skip on past.

What next? Do we delete threads by people asking about their SUV, 'cos omg SUVs are so dangerous in a collision! Maybe we should delete threads about road trips, since cars produce emissions that contribute to global warming which is going to flood my fucking city you goddamn insensitive bastards.

I'm crying here and you don't even care!
posted by Mr. President Dr. Steve Elvis America at 6:19 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I gotta say, I'm sure us anti-gun folks sound like paranoid safety freaks to the gun folks, but, wow, the logic behind concealed carry is beyond jacked.
having to go through buttons to get to my piece was an unacceptable threat to my health.
Boggles. The. Mind.

I mean, if having limited access to a gun is an unacceptable risk to one's health, I'd imagine these folks avoid all public roads and waterways and never climb ladders.
posted by Skwirl at 6:21 PM on April 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


Was there a different point that is being missed?

Right, let me try words of one syll. Able.

Leaving aside the argument of whether legal approval carrying guns is sane or not, it is nonetheless the case that laws allowing or prohibiting such activity vary from place to place. You might be able to carry around a weapon in case you need to kill or wound someone where you live, I may not be allowed to where I am. Ask Metafilter has a global user base.

What I was (tongue partially in cheek, as it is for me most of the time) suggesting is that moderation (which amounts to deletion of threads and comments), in matters where legality is at issue, seems to be performed based on either the location of the moderator or the location of the Asker (as you suggest), both of which I suggest are inappropriate yardsticks. Because Ask Metafilter has a global userbase.

That a question about something that is legal where the asker is is the same as a question that is illegal where the asker is?

So yes, of course, which is not the answer you expected, I assume, or you wouldn't have asked. Murder is illegal everywhere, sure (and so is getting rid of the body afterwards (AskMe history ahoy!)), but there are many many things, bearing arms included, which are illegal in some places and not illegal in others.

So, again: if it's legal somewhere, then I suggest, contrary it would seem to the current policy, it is fair fodder for good faith Asking and Answering. Because Ask Metafilter has a global userbase.

The natural counterargument is that the Mefafilter servers are, last I heard, physically located in the United States. I do not think this should matter a good goddamn, but the law, as we have seen, is often an ass, so it may.

In which case: never mind.

You got me now?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:24 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


snyder, it was golden shower ahn yu chinese restaurant on speedway in tucson.

Thanks.

Let's keep Rhode Island out of this, please.

You got a problem with Rhode Island, huh? You're lucky I'm not packin', punk. [NOT PACKIST]
posted by Snyder at 6:28 PM on April 24, 2007


saladpants you're extraordinarily self-centered if you think someone asking about a legal concealed carry permit has any kind of direct affect on your health and well-being.

Does the question itself make me or society at large less safe? Well, I suppose not, but answers enabling the OP to achieve his aim might, since I believe that any gun on the street, especially those that are concealed, makes people less safe. Ultimately, if my feeling that individuals with (legal or illegal) concealed weapons walking down the street affects my safety and the safety of others is self-centered, then yes, I'm self-centered, and proudly accept the label.

I'm not sure though why you link the legality of the act in question to its safety. Perhaps I missed this day in law school, but last I checked the legality of an act has no bearing on whether it is safe. There are plenty of legal, yet unsafe, things that I worry about. There are also plenty of illegal, yet unsafe things that I worry about. Legal or illegal has no bearing on the analysis, which leads me to believe that perhaps you don't understand the debate. Speaking of which...

You don't understand the terms of the debate, which is all the more reason why you shouldn't get a chance to comment in the question in question.

So now a lack of understanding is a reason to keep people from commenting. God, if only we could apply that logic to voting all our problems would be solved, because conservatives have a lack of understanding with regard to everything (as they just as rightfully believe I do). Two people on different sides of an issue often have a complete understanding of a subject, but each somewhat reasonably believes that the other does not understand, because they fundamentally disagree. This kind of argument gets us nowhere.
posted by saladpants at 6:29 PM on April 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


I'm married to the OP, and I would just like to assure everybody that he is going to be called Shooty McGunpants at least daily for the rest of his life.
posted by joannemerriam at 6:31 PM on April 24, 2007 [13 favorites]


saladpants, nobody gives a sweet fuck whether the question made you uncomfortable. The question wasn't about you, and if you don't like it, you can just skip on past.

Which is exactly what I did. This isn't about the question itself, but the deletion of comments made in response. I simply pointed out that there may be circumstances in which it is appropriate to make such comments, but I was far from resolute on the issue, acknowledging that those with the prevailing opinion here generally had a good point.
posted by saladpants at 6:34 PM on April 24, 2007


I don't feel so good.
posted by jonmc at 6:34 PM on April 24, 2007


You do know the purpose and structure of an interrogative, AMIRITE?

Also: ha ha teh funney. I see what you did there, but I teach that crap for a living, so back off library lady†, or I'll have to deploy my mad auxesis skills again!



† Don't ban me, please. I love library ladies.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:37 PM on April 24, 2007




Also, also: Gunny McShooterpants is more pleasing to the ear and heavier with punchy syllabic humour particles, in my humble opinion.

But what the hell do I know? [NOT INTERROGATIVIST]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:40 PM on April 24, 2007


I took a Swingline to my tummy, clicked on Emeril by accident, and now the neighbor kids are making beep-beep-beep noises.
Cry me a river, jonmc.



(You gonna eat that?)
posted by Dizzy at 6:49 PM on April 24, 2007


So now a lack of understanding is a reason to keep people from commenting.

Sorry, I was unclear, my point was the one that you've already acknowledged, that your position on the issue argues for rather than against moderation of answers that don't avoid the lure of making a political statement rather than an answer to the question.
posted by OmieWise at 6:51 PM on April 24, 2007


I mean, if having limited access to a gun is an unacceptable risk to one's health

If the only reason someone carries a gun is to protect their life, not being able to access it when they need to would be freaking stupid. And opposite to the goal of carrying the gun in the first place.
posted by smackfu at 6:56 PM on April 24, 2007


I simply pointed out that there may be circumstances in which it is appropriate to make such comments, but I was far from resolute on the issue, acknowledging that those with the prevailing opinion here generally had a good point.

saladpants, you seem more incoherent than irresolute.

Ultimately, if my feeling that individuals with (legal or illegal) concealed weapons walking down the street affects my safety and the safety of others is self-centered, then yes, I'm self-centered, and proudly accept the label.

Which does not mean that an AskMe question is the appropriate place to make your brave and principled stand.

Two people on different sides of an issue often have a complete understanding of a subject, but each somewhat reasonably believes that the other does not understand, because they fundamentally disagree. This kind of argument gets us nowhere.

Which is exactly why AskMe has been staked out (imperfectly, erratically, humanly) as a no-argument zone. What is it that you're not seeing here?

Maybe those salad greens just aren't doing it for you, nutrient-wise. Try lacinato kale, sauteed with garlic. Very tasty, not at all bitter.
posted by vetiver at 7:04 PM on April 24, 2007


As far as I know there's not a state in the union that issues permits without requiring training.

Pennsylvania.
posted by Netzapper at 7:07 PM on April 24, 2007


stavros, your point is a good one, but the comparison still falls short; I don't think lazy, substanceless "help me pir4te this w4r3Z" compares well to plaidrabbit's well-composed concealment question, even if both concern legality that varies from region to region. I'm not sure I'd be able to put together a thorough and satisfying dissection of it right now, but there's differences of at the very least presentation, stated intent (or lack thereof), and local liability. Regardless:

You're saying that, in moderation of morally/legally/ethically charged question, variation from question to question is dishonest, but I think it's much more accurate to say it's a matter of taste and Matt's (or Jess's or even my) personal boundaries. I don't think I've ever seen Matt or Jess represent that deletions are rigidly and logically and objectively consistent; there's very much an admitted gut-call human factor to go with the more practical reasoning that comes into play.

That may be in a real sense unfair to folks who have different sets of boundaries—both the asker whose software-theft appeal gets nuked and the pissed of mefites who can't understand why plaidrabbit's holster question wasn't deleted—but at that point it is as much an issue of whose taste is reflected as anything; in this case, it's the guy who runs the site, filtered through the reactions of the people who make the site happen. And I think some sense of personal discretion, bolstered by community feedback, has made for and will continue to make for a better site than any blanket policy of carte blanche questioneering.

I don't think you were aiming below the belt, but to label that inconsistency and inevitable preference for moderation over the sort of topical anarchy we'd get from a wholly unrestricted Q&A board as "dishonest" seems kind of lousy.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:15 PM on April 24, 2007


vetiver: You should take a look at what I was responding to before quoting me out of context. I was not arguing that an AskMe question is an appropriate place to make a stand, and that is not what my comments were addressing. I was addressing other comments which were similarly off the subject of the original topic.

My original post noted: I'm a bit torn on whether the comment should have been moderated. That hasn't changed.
posted by saladpants at 7:20 PM on April 24, 2007


So, again: if it's legal somewhere, then I suggest, contrary it would seem to the current policy, it is fair fodder for good faith Asking and Answering. Because Ask Metafilter has a global userbase.

Where exactly is software piracy legal? I think it's entirely reasonable that we assume, barring evidence to the contrary, that people are acting under the laws which are shared acrost the vast majority of countries with English-speaking internet users. Do we have to tolerate questions about bestiality because it's legal in whogivesafuckistan, too?
posted by 0xFCAF at 7:25 PM on April 24, 2007


stavrosthewonderchicken, let's split the difference and consider that his porn name.
posted by juliplease at 7:27 PM on April 24, 2007


I think it's much more accurate to say it's a matter of taste and Matt's (or Jess's or even my) personal boundaries.

Fair enough. But I'd have to note that if that is the case (and I'm fine with that -- a craving for rules is an indicator of a disordered mind, I reckon), then much of this thread is made pointless. Which is nothing new.

I don't think you were aiming below the belt, but to label that inconsistency and inevitable preference for moderation over the sort of topical anarchy we'd get from a wholly unrestricted Q&A board as "dishonest" seems kind of lousy.

Well, sorry. But please: I wasn't at any point advocating 'a wholly unrestricted Q&A board'. 'Dishonest,' though, was a poor choice of wording. I started with 'intellectually dishonest' then went to 'disingenuous' then back to just 'dishonest' before I shrugged and hit submit. My bad. What I meant, I guess, was 'not completely thought through'.

Again, I'm saying something like this: if I ask about carrying a concealed weapon, and live in Korea, where it is illegal, it has been suggested in this thread that such a thread is unacceptable because it is illegal where I am. If I lived in Texas or somewhere, though, the thread is OK. This seems inconsistent to me, for reasons I've outlines, as a matter of policy.

Really, though, it's no big deal. I'm just arguing the issue for fun, basically.

Do we have to tolerate questions about bestiality because it's legal in whogivesafuckistan, too?

I'm suggesting that the only logically consistent answer is 'yes, yes we do.' At the pleasure of the moderators, of course, as cortex explains.

Where exactly is software piracy legal?

Perhaps I am mistaken, but laws with regard to copyright infringement vary. If not, then my example was poor, but my point remains.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:30 PM on April 24, 2007


Supposing there's a place where software piracy is legal, the most workable comparison would be:

"Hi, I have a permit to be a software pirate here in [Magical Land]. I need to get the best large-capacity harddrive on the market today, because I'll soon need to store a lot of l33t w4r3z. Any suggestions?"
posted by CKmtl at 7:37 PM on April 24, 2007


Balk! Bunt! Win!
posted by breezeway at 7:41 PM on April 24, 2007


I don't feel so good.

The solution is obvious. More whiskey.
posted by god hates math at 7:43 PM on April 24, 2007


Waaay late, but:
NotMeTaed
NotMeTaed
NotMeTaed
NotMeTaed
etc. etc. (just a cursory search)

Oh, but asserting your personal morality on gun control is just fine because guns are wrong. Speech on THAT topic has to be moderated, and that’s ok because it’s a “public health issue.”
How hypocritical.
If someone did and said the same thing and came in with that kind of self-righteousness and moral judgement on someone in a question on abortion people would be all over that person instantly. And indeed, rightfully so.
I applaud the pro-gun control folks here who adhere to principle over self-interest.
posted by Smedleyman at 7:44 PM on April 24, 2007


Also, I was personally curious as to why someone might choose to carry, and came across this interesting page.
posted by Deathalicious

Bloody hell. Now every time I have a casual conversation with a woman in the street I'm gonna wonder if she is just being friendly because she "has the training and tools to protect herself" in case I turn out to be more than the "casual interlocutor" I "appeared to be."
posted by micayetoca at 5:41 PM on April 24


Agreed. Creepy. To me that read like:

Having the means to defend myself end this person's life if I decided to allowed me to be friendly and confident in talking to a stranger

I find that I am usually friendly and confident in talking to strangers I have no reason to suspect. But maybe I should start carrying.
posted by trip and a half at 7:50 PM on April 24, 2007


Having the means to defend myself end this person's life if I decided to allowed me to be friendly and confident in talking to a stranger

This is similar to those martial-arts dumbfucks who say that martial arts increases self-confidence in social settings. "It makes me self-confident to know that I can kick the asses of the people I meet!"
posted by jayder at 8:23 PM on April 24, 2007


Was going to post this neat link about polarized light but it's kind of doublish so here you go, Mr. McGunpants.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:46 PM on April 24, 2007


Man, this MeTa's even funnier than the Dead Yeltsin Double Trouble one.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 8:59 PM on April 24, 2007


Smedlyman: Thanks, that's a good point... in the heat of the moment 200 posts ago, I didn't think to look.

I really am curious about when it became taboo to have an opinion that deviated from the cultural norm around here. It seems to have happened overnight.
posted by SpecialK at 9:02 PM on April 24, 2007


No one has posted this yet? I am appalled. [Not Anti-Gun]
posted by IronLizard at 9:03 PM on April 24, 2007


I think I get you now, stav. And agreed, not a big deal.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:07 PM on April 24, 2007


This is similar to those martial-arts dumbfucks who say that martial arts increases self-confidence in social settings. "It makes me self-confident to know that I can kick the asses of the people I meet!"

Except, the page isn't actually talking about social settings. Here's the quote again, slightly less out of context:

Having the means to defend myself allowed me to be friendly and confident in talking to a stranger in what could have been dangerous circumstances.

Having your car break down on a dark, deserted highway (the scene she relates), does leave you vulnerable if some psycho comes along. It's more probable that the person who stops is a normal, non-psycho person who just wants to help, but the consequences if they aren't could be pretty dire.
posted by Many bubbles at 9:33 PM on April 24, 2007


I, for one, welcome questions about bestiality in whogivesafuckistan.
posted by staggernation at 9:58 PM on April 24, 2007


whogivesafuckistan? wegiveafuckistan!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:00 PM on April 24, 2007


whogivesafuckistan? wegiveafuckistan!

Too bad they are always at war.
posted by jamaro at 10:09 PM on April 24, 2007


Has anybody determined whether or not Stan gives a fuck back?
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:23 PM on April 24, 2007


After much soul searching, I have determined that infact - I do give a fuck.

Thanks for asking!
posted by SirStan at 10:34 PM on April 24, 2007


Dizzy writes 'Can't respond; having a tummy tuck.'

I think that's going a little too far in the quest for a place to carry a concealed weapon.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 11:32 PM on April 24, 2007


Kentucky allows open (unconcealed) carrying of firearms; it's even constitutionally protected in the Kentucky Bill of Rights (Sec.1):

'Seventh: The right to bear arms in defense of themselves and of the State, subject to the power of the General Assembly to enact laws to prevent persons from carrying concealed weapons.'

That is, if you're allowed to have a gun in the first place you're allowed to tote it around in plain sight, and they'd have to change the state constitution to take that right away. Furthermore you don't need a license to do that. Very few ordinary civilians do that however.

I have no idea how many carry concealed weapons nor do I know anybody who does; the license requirements seem pretty stringent, but they're not so strict that they don't let blind people pack in this state. Given that open carry is legal I wonder why more people don't just do that instead; talk about "deterrent effect", the only armed people I'm rude to are cops.

But in case y'all are wndering, though I support people's right to tote around any damn weapon they please in a calm and peaceable manner, my "SO" won't let me keep a firearm in the apartment so I ain't bothered buying one.

(And this by the way was another l4m3 callout.)
posted by davy at 11:38 PM on April 24, 2007


they're not so strict that they don't let blind people pack in this state.

Trying to parse that...does that mean what I think it means? That blind people are allowed to pack? And that consequently there are some that actually do?
posted by juv3nal at 1:27 AM on April 25, 2007


I do not think those words mean what you think they mean.

It was a play on words, Shakespeare. Figure it out.
posted by psmealey at 4:06 AM on April 25, 2007


As far as I know there's not a state in the union that issues permits without requiring training.

There are plenty. Washington state, for one. Oregon requires training, but that can be satisfied with a "hunters' safety" course and other no so rigorous options.

And that's the funny part to me, that saladpants and others are all incensed about having this issue discussed on AskMe, while living in states that happily issue concealed carry permits. One would think that all that energy would be better redirected into attempting to change their respective state laws, where these things are actually decided.
posted by Forktine at 4:16 AM on April 25, 2007


If someone did and said the same thing and came in with that kind of self-righteousness and moral judgement on someone in a question on abortion people would be all over that person instantly.

No, I don't think it's a good idea to carry a concealed abortion in public. The "omg liberals can complain and conservatives can't" is belied by the text of my question and the language of the comments in this thread. Take your persecution complex to a less sycophantic website.

This has been a depressing discussion. I can deal with the personal attacks, this being the internet and all, but there are so many lazy jabs at the very existence of this post by normally bright people, and it makes me sad. The "unwritten rules" meme is stronger here than people want to think. Post dots when someone dies; answer questions for the benefit of the questioner only, and not the rest of the community; never use Metatalk to question authority; "the guidelines" are always right; a point of view becomes a "partisan agenda" unless and until the community is ready to rally around it. The website has grown and become smaller at the same time.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 4:36 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


Dizzy writes 'Can't respond; having a tummy tuck.'

I think that's going a little too far in the quest for a place to carry a concealed weapon.


sez you.
posted by dreamsign at 4:37 AM on April 25, 2007


Saucy Intruder, not only are you wrong about guns, but you're wrong about the purpose of Ask Metafilter. It's not a place for card-carrying agenda pushers to push their agenda on people who've explicitly stated they don't want to hear it while they're getting their question answered.

There are, however, thousands of places like that - unmoderated anything goes forums - all over the net. If you really want to harangue people who aren't listening to you, go to one of them.
posted by ikkyu2 at 4:41 AM on April 25, 2007


never use Metatalk to question authority;

You're perfectly welcome to use Metatalk to question authority, but don't expect to be coddled when you're wrong.
posted by knave at 4:43 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


Having your car break down on a dark, deserted highway (the scene she relates), does leave you vulnerable if some psycho comes along. It's more probable that the person who stops is a normal, non-psycho person who just wants to help, but the consequences if they aren't could be pretty dire.

otoh, this makes me think the next time I'm in the States I'm not going to be that person who stops to help, if there's some good chance the person I'm picking up is carrying a fricking gun.

Prisoner's Dilemma of a sort; sub-optimal decision-making. For most people, I think the preferred option is *no one has guns* or *only the police have guns*. Failing that, many individuals would rather have a gun than be in a situation with someone where that someone is armed and they are not. So they arm. So for others it becomes more likely to be on the short end of the pointy stick. Etc.

on preview: I will say this -- only on Metafilter would someone who started a 250+ comment thread still, at the end of it, cry the help help I'm being repressed speech.

Jessamyn was right -- that question was the poster child for carefully worded, technically-oriented, un-troll-like controversy-filter and you STILL couldn't leave it alone.
posted by dreamsign at 4:50 AM on April 25, 2007


For most people, I think the preferred option is *no one has guns* or *only the police have guns*.

Let me chime in with a hearty "fuck that" for the latter option. I'd throw in some founding fathers and V for Vendetta quotes, but the bottom line is I don't personally trust the govt that much, and I don't think anyone should. Govts are supposed to be kept in check by the people, and the right to bear arms is a huge part of that (even if, 99% of the time, it's only a psychological check).
posted by knave at 4:54 AM on April 25, 2007


That's some serious dreamtime, knave. Best lay off the graphic novels for awhile.

When's the last time you "kept the police in check" with your personal stash of firearms? Or is it your contention that its existence is what does the job?
posted by dreamsign at 5:05 AM on April 25, 2007


Sorry, missed the "psychological check" part. But I really doubt that most cops walk around thinking "I'd sure like to nightstick this punk into unconsciousness, but what if he's packing?"
posted by dreamsign at 5:07 AM on April 25, 2007


The point is, if push came to shove, Americans have more to fight back with than rocks and sticks (see: Palestine). Philosophically, the right to self defense (against intruders of all stripes) is something I value. It's nice to wish the world was another way, but it isn't. (Sorry my responses are short and probably not that helpful, but I don't have the energy for the whole debate, which generally leads nowhere.)

Best lay off the graphic novels for awhile.

Incidentally, I've never read one.
posted by knave at 5:23 AM on April 25, 2007


Let's keep Rhode Island out of this, please.

You got a problem with Rhode Island, huh? You're lucky I'm not packin', punk


RHODE ISLAND! REPRESENT! LITTLE RHODY 4EVA!

[NOT RHODEISLANDIST]
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:10 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


[NOT RHODEISLANDIST]

You better not be!
posted by knave at 6:24 AM on April 25, 2007


Metatalk: you will respect its authoritah
posted by Abiezer at 6:32 AM on April 25, 2007


The most reasonable, polite, non-confrontational posts that happen to be on issues some people have strong feelings about are public health hazards?

Ideally, anyone who would get freaked out would be the best person to answer the question! Would you get more freaked out by a gun you can kind of see the outline of, or one that's not at all visible? Do you get more freaked out by people wearing inappropriate levels of clothing in warm weather, assuming that they're hiding their guns?

I, personally, am freaked out by Hawaiian shirts and will now see them forever as a sign of gun ownership. See, that is what I got from quietly reading the thread and not derailing it -- I can now tell who has a gun based on clothing!
posted by mikeh at 6:38 AM on April 25, 2007


When's the last time you "kept the police in check" with your personal stash of firearms? Or is it your contention that its existence is what does the job?

Sorry, missed the "psychological check" part. But I really doubt that most cops walk around thinking "I'd sure like to nightstick this punk into unconsciousness, but what if he's packing?"


Actually, the cops running across some punk who's packing IS something that they think about on a regular basis... because cops aren't perfect angels, their line of work isn't holy and sainted, and a punk with a gun who has the balls to pull the trigger can SERIOUSLY shorten their lifespan, and Mr. Cop wants to go home tonight with only as many holes in his head as he left with this morning.

Can you imagine what a demostration/rally where cops are beating and tazing protestors who didn't break a law and didn't harm the police would turn into ... if the demonstrators started shooting back at the police? "Rubber bullets? PAH! Try this on!!!" ... Suddenly, police forces might be a little less prone to try to break up peaceable marches and demonstrations (also, by the way, in violation of our constitution.)

That's what the 2nd Amendment is for. It's for when Dubya "trips and falls down the stairs" and Cheney comes to power, and suddenly it's mandated that everyone has to wear a grey business suit to work every day, with a red tie on alternate thursdays, weekends are outlawed, and we all have to sing "All Hail Haliburton" before sitting down and beginning to dillegently work all day, and all copies of all Ayn Rand books are burnt. Correct me if I'm wong, but I think we're the only nation in the world that has it written in between the lines of our constitution that we CAN and SHOULD throw a nice little revolution if the government gets so bad that we can't bear it any longer.

If you didn't get the point of that provision after reading Orwell's 1984 and Animal Farm, after seeing V for Vendetta, after reading Farenheit 451 and Brave New World ... then you completely and totally missed the point of all of those books. And if you didn't read any of those books, then your schools failed you. The point of having guns is that the population should have the same power over the government that the government has over it. Yes, guns are a tool for killing. But said another way, guns are a tool for granting power over another person's life or death. Your government has that power over you, and is not afraid to use it. To make things nice and even and democratic, wouldn't you want to have that power over your government?

Your question about when the last time someone kept the government/police in check with their personal stash of firearms is fallacious -- honestly, the last time guns were used by the population on a "proper" basis in this country was the civil war, and the time before that the American Revolution. History, of course, is written by the winners... Don't forget that 5 years before the Civil War, the US government marched on Utah and pulled down the legally elected Mormon governor of the Utah Territory and replaced him with their own nominee. Imagine if -that- had gone the other way.

The whole point of this argument is that there's a lot of people these days, especially in MeFi's demographic, that get their panties all up in a wad about guns. Based on this thered, it seems to be the perception that "guns are only used for killing," "people who have guns will shoot other people frequently," and "no one should need to carry a gun because our government protects us."

The problem is, 'guns are bad, mmkay' is a faith beleif among this group. Like most faith beleifs, it can't be argued aside -- see the previous attempts to correct me on my percentage of yearly deaths caused by guns. I could be convinced that guns have no use -- note that I don't own one! -- but not, apparently, Mr. Shooty McGunpants. HE'S a true believer.
posted by SpecialK at 7:06 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


Having your car break down on a dark, deserted highway (the scene she relates), does leave you vulnerable if some psycho comes along. It's more probable that the person who stops is a normal, non-psycho person who just wants to help, but the consequences if they aren't could be pretty dire.

otoh, this makes me think the next time I'm in the States I'm not going to be that person who stops to help, if there's some good chance the person I'm picking up is carrying a fricking gun.


While I have a huge respect - if not fear - of the damage guns can do, I am at the same time always a little perplexed by this oh noes someone might have one and I wouldn't know attitude so many people purport to have.

That person may well have a frickin knife, tire iron, bird flu, pepper spray, taser, butcher knife, strep throat, weeping sores or grod knows what. If you are afraid that a person broken down on the side of the road has malevolent intent, regardless of their purposeful or accidental weapon at hand, just don't stop.

Knave offers up a good link about how the human brain is a poor assessor of risk, and what makes me snicker is that I bet both the anti-concealed weapon folk and the pro-gun folk look at that list and only see how it applies to the other side.
posted by phearlez at 7:08 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


To make things nice and even and democratic, wouldn't you want to have that power over your government?

Just to be a pendant, because I am wont to, that should read "to have that power over the individuals who make up your government?" The fallacy that the government (or a corporation) is some single-minded perfectly-operating entity that operates in perfect and inscrutable fashion is absolutely maddening. If you don't agree you have never been on the phone with someone telling you that something can't happen "until the head office decides to process the check."

Your question about when the last time someone kept the government/police in check with their personal stash of firearms is fallacious -- honestly, the last time guns were used by the population on a "proper" basis in this country was the civil war, and the time before that the American Revolution.

I don't really believe in the concept that the armed populace has an impact on the direction of the government, but a true believer's unprovable assertion in response to "when the last time the government was kept in check by a populace with guns" would be "constantly." I think it's more likely that the framers believed that the population having the means to resist the government by arms was more the point than them actually doing it.
posted by phearlez at 7:15 AM on April 25, 2007


I think you meant 'pedant'.
posted by jacalata at 8:00 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


thank you, pheariez - people do tend to refer to Government as if it's a monolithic entity. I've been a civil servant, and that will quickly teach you that there's a variety of faces and skill sets behind the face of 'Government'. It's like refering to 'society' as if one version of it exists.

Special K, do you honestly think some kind of hyper-police state and military coup style take over would be possible in America in 2007? The administration haven't needed to do a forced take over - think more along the lines of a systemic erosion, which is far more sinister. I'd also like to think if our government gets so bad that we can't bear it we would have alternatives to violence in order to change that government.

And how do all of these books somehow support the notion that the populace should arm itself against its government? Those books are classics because they illustrate the dangers of unchecked power; the tools you use to keep that power from damaging the populace are things like dissent and an active media, not the ability to just wack anyone you don't like even if they are a member of "The Government". I'm not someone who trusts authority, but at some level this distrust of government by some Americans is disheartenning.

Maybe it should be celebrated that the last time guns were used by the populace on a wide scale *was* the Civil War. I'd like to think that this country has evolved since then, and it has. The need for guns against the government does evoke that kind of frontier mentality that is out of touch with the needs of a modern nation. It's 2007 - shouldn't we kind of leave that 'cowboys conquering the frontier, arm yourself against the FBI at your door' ideology behind? When is living in perpetual fear that a government is going to take over healthy for us, as individuals or as a society? Is it ever?
posted by rmm at 8:48 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


perhaps, or maybe I have a disparate kneed two hang around someone's neck.

Groddamned fingers, clearly defective.
posted by phearlez at 8:51 AM on April 25, 2007


The "unwritten rules" meme is stronger here than people want to think. Post dots when someone dies; answer questions for the benefit of the questioner only, and not the rest of the community; never use Metatalk to question authority; "the guidelines" are always right; a point of view becomes a "partisan agenda" unless and until the community is ready to rally around it.

Have you ever noticed that whenever someone gets criticised for pushing their personal agenda on the community inappropriately, that that's when they start complaining about community bias? They never mention it when they agree with critcising someone else's axe grinding.
posted by shmegegge at 8:54 AM on April 25, 2007


Take your persecution complex to a less sycophantic website.

...after which Saucy Intruder goes on to complain about being persecuted by the MeFi masses who bow to authority. Look, Saucy Intruder, here's an analogy. If you don't see why you're mistaken, you're beyond help:

Dear AskMe, I'm looking for someone to re-bind my copy of the Koran. I'm a fundamentalist muslim and I've had this book for years. I'm in Chicago. P.S. I've thought about my faith throughout my life, so please don't suggest that I convert.

Dear Poster, I know you said you don't want to convert, but I really think you should. Christianity, unlike Islam, will actually save your immortal soul. Throw out that Koran.
posted by smorange at 9:02 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


You know, as I ponder this matter a little I wonder if maybe it's a shame that the fact that the population is armed doesn't seem to impact the decision-makers in government. When I try to think of the most day-to-day ways that this should impact behavior I come up with things like

No-knock warrants
the Waco tragedy
Ruby Ridge.

In the case of no-knocks we have police bursting into homes, often on drug issues, terrifying citizens who may or may not be guilty of any crime (and if they are, it's likely a non-violent drug crime) and leaving them uncertain if they're being victimized by a home invader or served with a legitimate warrant. Theoretically the need for a no-knock could be over the fear of armed resistance, but in most cases it seems to be about fear of evidence being destroyed. The possibility that a resident who doesn't know better might fear s/he is being attacked and respond with force should probably cause the courts and police to question the real need, yet they continue to exist and be served.

In Waco and Ruby Ridge, ham-handed law-enforcement took a sub-optimal course of action and people died. I've got a firm opinion on who the real bad guys were in those cases, but I'm simply anti-death in general. Regardless of who is More Wrong I'd just like to see fewer people shot to death rather than more. But both sides on those arguments seem unable to get beyond a binary thinking rather than questioning "knowing what we know, was there a way for things to proceed as needed without turning everything into The OK Corral II?

I wonder what the founders would think of those things? I'm inclined to think that it means that an armed populace impacting the behavior of law enforcement is a fiction.
posted by phearlez at 9:05 AM on April 25, 2007


First of all, I work for the government. (Hi, I'm here to help you. Honest.) So I know exactly how monolithic the government is.

Special K, do you honestly think some kind of hyper-police state and military coup style take over would be possible in America in 2007? The administration haven't needed to do a forced take over - think more along the lines of a systemic erosion, which is far more sinister. I'd also like to think if our government gets so bad that we can't bear it we would have alternatives to violence in order to change that government.

Did. You. Read. Any. Of. The. Books. I. Listed. That was the point of Farenheit 451 and 1984, and to an extent V for Vendetta (although you're right, that was more of a coup -- but the same type of thing may have happened if Dubya was popular and decided he needed a third term...)

When someone's appointed himself the leader and he has the backing of the military, what would the alternatives to violence be? Peaceable resistance would simply mean that all the protesters get placed in concentration camps. You're an idealist, rmm. I can accept that.

Napoleon had something akin to the latin translation of (too lazy to look it up) "The last argument of kings" stamped into his cannons. Violence is the last resort of diplomacy... unless someone else holds a gun to your head.
posted by SpecialK at 9:12 AM on April 25, 2007


Ultima Ratio Regum, and it was Louis XIV.
posted by Skorgu at 9:24 AM on April 25, 2007


Ultima Ratio Regum,

Which also was the inscription on Reason in Snow Crash.

posted by quin at 9:33 AM on April 25, 2007


quin, you made me check to see if Reason magazine predates Snow Crash.
posted by hoverboards don't work on water at 10:16 AM on April 25, 2007


As an example, DU is allowed to give the worst possible answers in every single thread, and nobody ever says "you know what, DU has never made a useful answer, ever. We should shut him the fuck up."

you know, i thought you were kidding until i checked his askme history out.
posted by shmegegge at 10:28 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


Post dots when someone dies - Unless you've got some cool links or interesting anecdote that relates to the deceased.

Answer questions for the benefit of the questioner only, and not the rest of the community - The rest of the community has their own respective one question a week; if they are curious about something, they know how to ask.

Never use Metatalk to question authority - Yeah, because MeTa has been a real ghost town when it comes to "Why did the admins delete my big stinking turd?" whine-posts lately.

"The guidelines" are always right - "The guidelines" are admittedly vague, yet most members seem to have no problem understanding them.

a point of view becomes a "partisan agenda" unless and until the community is ready to rally around it - Or when it actually is, y'know, a "partisan agenda".

shmegegge: He's got a sweet ratio, though.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:56 AM on April 25, 2007 [2 favorites]


Thanks, Skorgu & Quin. Like I said, too lazy to look it up, but I knew it was a french ruler. ;)
posted by SpecialK at 11:22 AM on April 25, 2007


Take your persecution complex to a less sycophantic website... but there are so many lazy jabs at the very existence of this post by normally bright people, and it makes me sad.

This is because your post was really, really stupid. You thought you should be able to shit one someone's AskMe thread because you feel strongly about the issues involved, and you're just wrong.

AskMe is for answering questions. Specifically, it's for answering the questions that the asker actually asked. There are exceptions, of course, but the exceptions are all tailored to enhancing AskMe's usefulness.

I understand the exceptions to the "just answer the question rule" to be as follows:

1) Look behind the question if the asker appears to be ignoring some salient fact that will undermine the very end they're seeking to accomplish in asking the question.

2) Look behind the question if the asker appears that following the course of action proposed in the question will in all likelihood cause apparently unanticipated harm to the asker or a third person.

3) Look behind the question if the asker is proposing an illegal course of action when a legal course of action could accomplish the same end.

In all of these situations, the asker has made some sort of error and would not be well served if the community simply answered the question on its face.

None of this was exhibited in the concealed carry question. The asker had apparently given the issue some though, decided he wanted to carry a firearm, had established that it was legal to do so in his jurisdiction, and simply wished to know how best to do it. There was simply nothing left to say on the topic of firearms generally.
posted by Mr. President Dr. Steve Elvis America at 1:01 PM on April 25, 2007 [2 favorites]


Look behind the question! He's got a gun!
posted by kosem at 1:36 PM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


As an example, DU is allowed to give the worst possible answers in every single thread, and nobody ever says "you know what, DU has never made a useful answer, ever. We should shut him the fuck up."

you know, i thought you were kidding until i checked his askme history out.


No. Sadly I wasn't kidding. 300 answers, and not one is even remotely useful.

It reminds me of a mime. I guess he's making some sort of artistic statement, but I just want to punch him in the nose.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 3:17 PM on April 25, 2007


In fairness to the moderators, those 300 (remaining) answers are the remnants of what is roughly a 10% deletion rate.*

*Based on the completely unfounded assumption that most of the deletions are in AskMe.
posted by Partial Law at 3:29 PM on April 25, 2007


the title of this callout is its best feature

The title of this callout is excellent. It stands on its own merits.
posted by psmealey at 3:54 PM on April 25, 2007


the only problem i had with the question: the questioner used "discretely" when he/she meant "discreetly". that's one of this gun-owner's pet peeves.
posted by bruce at 8:18 PM on April 25, 2007


@ThePinkSuperhero: it's not wrong to scan the thread and make note of who is carrying, but let me add a personal perspective. I have been carrying before at times when I've become REALLY angry at something, and the thought doesn't even cross my mind to use it. The law is strict on when you're allowed to use it, and very specific but with enough gray areas to make one hesitate quite a bit before making the decision to use it. In addition to losing your permit, gun law violations EVEN when protecting yourself carry a mandatory minimum three-year sentence in my state.

I've often heard it said that if someone is trying to beat you up, but not using deadly force (a reasonable person would not be in fear of imminent grave bodily harm or death), it's better to leave it holstered and take the beating or run if you can. After reading the laws, I tend to agree.

Carrying a gun has lead me to realize to the fullest that I am not incapable of controlling myself, that no matter how bad things get there are things I hold sacred in this world, and lines I will not cross. I suggest reading Ethics from the Barrel of a Gun by Eric Raymond if you want an idea of what I'm talking about. Carrying a gun can make you feel - and act - in a more responsible, measured way.
posted by tkolstee at 10:33 PM on April 25, 2007


“The "omg liberals can complain and conservatives can't" is belied by the text of my question and the language of the comments in this thread. Take your persecution complex to a less sycophantic website.”

Horsecock. I said nothing about liberals or conservatives. If it’s implied I apologize for not making it more clear. But I think I’m far more judicious in my statement concerning pro-gun folks and applauding their adherence to principle than your assumption that all pro-gun folks are “liberal.”
That is most certainly NOT the case.

The issue - MY issue - with your assertion is that it is similar in form to questions asked on other sensitive topics. In nearly all of those instances - certainly all the one’s I’ve seen - no one has morally judged the asker or the topic in a manner similar to you. Period.
Nor have I seen anywhere asserted that free speech be limited on a board because of some facile “health” issue.
Most particularly as such specious reasoning has been used within the debate on abortion. Which, as someone who is FUCKING PRO-CHOICE I find particularly odious as well. But my personal position on the matter has no bearing to the invalidity of the form such assertions take.

All this, IMHO, makes your argument hypocritical.
It doesn’t judge what kind of person you are, unlike you I didn’t engage in personal attacks asserting you have some sort of character flaw. I attacked your argument, which I still think is wrong.
Perhaps if you said “I’m uncomfortable with this, but he’s got a right to speak” or some such I could respect your position.
You have every right to express your own opinion and I would not invalidate your feelings on any issue. They’re yours after all.
You are uncomfortable with guns - ok. You want to argue a pro-gun control point of view, great. I may even agree with some of your points.
But even if your position is as obvious as the rotation of the earth there is a consensual agreement within the AskMe board. You wish to be part of it, you should adhere to that agreement.
Instead you prioritized your opinion above everyone else’s agreed upon engagement of speech causing a disruption in that speech so that you could assert a comment be deleted because of your personal issue with the matter.

As a big free speech proponent (does that make me conservative or liberal I wonder?) and a big fan of variety of method in consensual discourse*, I don’t think you have a leg to stand on.

*It’s fairly obvious there are different modes of discourse within metafilter. As there are both subtle and gross differences in methods of discourse and consensual agreements on methods outside metafilter - not only on the internet but in society at large, ignorance is no excuse. It isn’t like you don’t know. It appears to me you’ve chosen to ignore what is nearly universally ingrained and socially practiced (outside of, say, autistic folks).
Indeed your assertion that MeFi has become a partisan - whatever - or has diminished is (as mentioned before) a pedantically obvious argument meant to serve your own interest.

My advice, give it up, take the hit and admit you did the equivalent of - say - swearing out loud in church. It’s outside the bounds of the agreed upon use of the space and no matter your justification, it’s going to upset people.

And, as I said, rightly so. People go to certain places to engage in certain types of communal discourse. The church. A movie theater. A coffee house. A bar. And certain mores and speech are acceptable only in certain places.
You can’t violate the commons with impunity just ‘cause your thing is just so important to you.
(Although that’s been said, very excellently, a number of ways now)
posted by Smedleyman at 4:04 PM on April 26, 2007


As far as I know there's not a state in the union that issues permits without requiring training.
except that is:
Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii (permits are nearly impossible to get, but training isn't requred), Idaho (in some counties), Indiana (in some counties), Mississippi,

Oh I'm sick of this game. go to Packing.org
and look up Your state.
posted by Megafly at 6:35 PM on April 26, 2007


The problem is, 'guns are bad, mmkay' is a faith beleif among this group.

That's amazingly ass-backwards.
You'd have to be completely wilfully blind to argue that easy gun ownership in the U.S. isn't partly responsible for at least some deaths.
But the idea that an armed citizenry could or does deter tyranny is the faith argument. You do not know, cannot know, that that is a factor, or that it will be a factor. I'm not saying it's a BS argument, but to have actual deaths on one hand and your oppressive regime resistance fantasy on the other, and to call the former a faith argument... give your head a shake.

I'll paste what I put in the unfortunate recent shooting thread here because I can't seem to find the words again:

Just my $.02, but
- cop shoots you and plants gun. it happens, but I hope it's a rarity
- cop sees you with gun and shoots you. asks questions later. semi-regular occurrence, I think.

also, situation #1 requires a dirty cop -- not a rarity perhaps but not 100% of these forces, either. situation #2 does not.
posted by dreamsign at 2:18 AM on April 27, 2007


Oh, just one more thing, because I'm curious.

Ideally, anyone who would get freaked out would be the best person to answer the question! Would you get more freaked out by a gun you can kind of see the outline of, or one that's not at all visible?

This is what struck me about the absurdity of knife laws in my area growing up. You could carry certain knives legally (set or folding blade, no butterfly, at or below max length) but they had to be visible on your person. Otherwise, it would be an illegal concealed weapon.

Is that not a terrible public policy decision? Sure, the concealed weapon concern is understandable, but you're asking people to walk around with knives and not thinking that that's going to cause more trouble than it prevents? Is it like that where you live? (assuming this thread hasn't completely died)
posted by dreamsign at 2:21 AM on April 27, 2007


sorry -- asking people to walk around with knives in plain view
posted by dreamsign at 2:22 AM on April 27, 2007


Is that not a terrible public policy decision? Sure, the concealed weapon concern is understandable, but you're asking people to walk around with knives and not thinking that that's going to cause more trouble than it prevents?

No, you aren't asking people to walk around with knives. You're saying they can, with the knowledge that they mostly won't for social or other reasons. In practice, few people openly carry knives or guns. Much fewer than are probably packing with a concealed carry license.
posted by grouse at 2:28 AM on April 27, 2007


eh, well see my correction, but I appreciate the point: create a disincentive to carry at all.

still, if you're gonna carry, I have to think that insisting that it be done in plain view is going create trouble, not avoid it.
posted by dreamsign at 3:56 AM on April 27, 2007


I have to think that insisting that it be done in plain view is going create trouble, not avoid it.

This isn't some hypothetical point. Open carry of various sorts of weapons has been legal in many jurisdictions for years, yet you don't see tons of people walking around carrying knives in plain view in a way that causes trouble.

So while your argument may have some merit theoretically, in practice it has been shown to be wrong.
posted by grouse at 4:22 AM on April 27, 2007


hmm, create potentially dangerous but undesirable rules for situations, in the hopes that their undesirability will result in them infrequently arising.

as you say, we don't see tons of people walking around wearing knives, which was always the other interesting part of the equation.

though my personal observation was that they still carried them; they just ignored the rule (taking the chance that were it found by a cop, they would be shown leniency because it still otherwise fit within the parameters of legal blades).
posted by dreamsign at 4:55 AM on April 27, 2007


Can you imagine what a demostration/rally where cops are beating and tazing protestors who didn't break a law and didn't harm the police would turn into ... if the demonstrators started shooting back at the police?

Yeah. It'd be called "Waco" or "Ruby Ridge."
posted by octobersurprise at 6:02 AM on April 27, 2007


as you say, we don't see tons of people walking around wearing knives, which was always the other interesting part of the equation.

You might be surprised. The trend with knives in the past decade or so was to add a clip to the side so they could be hooked in the pocket and not require a holster. Because the top of the knife and the clip are visible, most cops nowadays consider that to be not-concealed. The thing is, if you don't know it's a knife, you might think it's a pager/ pen/ any-other-thing-with-a-clip.

I only mention it, because once you start looking for it, you will notice that many people carry pocket knives.
posted by quin at 9:43 AM on April 27, 2007


Open carry of various sorts of weapons has been legal in many jurisdictions for years, yet you don't see tons of people walking around carrying knives in plain view in a way that causes trouble.

Actually... my sister works for the crime lab in MA and she says that slashing incidents are way up because while it's not legal to walk around with a gun, it's very legal to walk around with a machete ["see? gardening!"] and so there have been a lot of local gang and non-gang machete incidents over the past few years. This is not to go against your main point, just to drop a fact in for good measure.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 11:40 AM on April 27, 2007


Because the top of the knife and the clip are visible, most cops nowadays consider that to be not-concealed.

That may be a common cop attitude (for now/there) but most concealed laws are such that even partial concealment fits the bill if someone WANTS to charge you.

there have been a lot of local gang and non-gang machete incidents over the past few years

Personally I'd pin that more on MS-13's use of it and their effectiveness in scaring the crap out of people inspiring others, but it seems pretty unknowable what the real prime mover is...
posted by phearlez at 3:57 PM on April 27, 2007


You are probably right phearlez, I'm sure some of my perception comes from the fact that, as a guy in his mid 30's I get hassled a lot less than I did as a guy in his early 20's, when these knives first became popular (Spyderco knives specifically.)

The cops I encounter don't even give me a second glance, but I bet if I was being rowdy and obnoxious enough to get myself arrested, they would tack on the CCW charge just because they could.
posted by quin at 4:05 PM on April 27, 2007


I'm shocked to learn that Mefi is so gun-friendly. It's so odd to me how otherwise liberal-minded people can consciously support the guns-4-all mentality, seemingly just because they've been told all their lives that limiting the use of guns for the good of society impinges on their God-Given Liberty. It's unfathomably barbaric to me that anyone should believe more deadly weapons = more safety. It should be a no-brainer.

I'm happy to not live in a society where a huge proportion of people harbour an attitude toward others like, "Don't touch me, my car or my property 'cause I can kill you in an instant."

I guess I just don't get it, at all. But then there are a lot of things I don't get.

(PS. The statistics bandied about above don't include unintentional shootings.)
posted by loiseau at 12:51 PM on April 28, 2007


I'm shocked to learn that Mefi is so gun-friendly.

No, we aren't gun-friendly, we're off-topic-AskMe-comments–unfriendly. I'd be willing to bet good money that at least a majority of those arguing that the off-topic comments should be kept out are also in favor of more gun control. And for some of us much more gun control.
posted by grouse at 4:12 PM on April 28, 2007


It's so odd to me how otherwise liberal-minded people can consciously support the guns-4-all mentality, seemingly just because they've been told all their lives that limiting the use of guns for the good of society impinges on their God-Given Liberty.

It appears you have a lovely straw-man there.
posted by Snyder at 5:52 PM on April 28, 2007


Yeah, Snyder is right and has better restraint than me. What you describe doesn't remotely portray my position or feelings about guns.

What it appears you don't get is how anyone could not share your views in any way that isn't some extremist caricature of a person.
posted by phearlez at 7:06 PM on April 29, 2007


Leave town for five days, and the thread is still kicking. People wonder why I like the grey so much? It's got momentum, dammit.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:35 AM on April 30, 2007


*crickets chirping*
posted by grouse at 7:21 AM on April 30, 2007


*llamas lounging*
posted by OmieWise at 10:26 AM on April 30, 2007


*echidnas estivating*
posted by found missing at 10:35 AM on April 30, 2007


swans a' swimming
posted by psmealey at 10:36 AM on April 30, 2007


*anthromorphs alliterating*
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:47 AM on April 30, 2007


*literatis lecturing*
posted by OmieWise at 11:40 AM on April 30, 2007


*anthromorphs pursuing po*
posted by found missing at 11:47 AM on April 30, 2007


*uses concealed gun to shoot anthromorphs, literatis, swans, echdnas, llamas, and crickets*


*silence*
posted by Megafly at 6:31 PM on April 30, 2007


*souls susurating*
posted by OmieWise at 7:05 PM on April 30, 2007


*cooks up some llama with a side of swan, enjoys silence*

*pokes anthromorph body with toe, watches it warily, cocks gun*
posted by quin at 9:15 PM on April 30, 2007


"In many states anybody can carry a gun openly (AK, ME, and PA come to mind). In those states, the permit allows you to conceal the weapon. "

Just a minor correction.. AK allows you to carry concealed without a permit. So does VT.

http://www.packing.org

"This Bill changes Alaska Statute 11.61.220 to allow anyone who may legally carry a firearm to also carry it concealed without having to obtain a special permit"
posted by drstein at 4:05 PM on May 2, 2007


« Older MeFiSwap   |   Metafilter Shoutout Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments