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Old 01-06-2012, 07:22 PM   #46
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This conversation reminds me, too, when I'm putting out the magazines at my workplace, seriously, you would not believe the amount of gun magazines we have. I mean, I do live in Iowa, and people hunt here, so I can understand, say, having a hunting magazine or two around, and small stuff like that, but no, we have magazines for guns that nobody, not even police, should really be allowed to have, and we have magazines that are essentially militia-style, talking about how to protect yourself from terrorists or myths from the anti-gun brigade or whatever, and gun collection magazines. I swear, they take up almost an entire section, there's at least 20, 25 of them. It disturbs me every time I'm putting stuff away there.
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Old 01-06-2012, 07:53 PM   #47
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It's quite a culture shock for me reading that, because, in general, police in Ireland aren't even armed at all, apart from carrying extendable batons and pepper spray.

If you're a Garda in Ireland, to get to be allowed to carry a weapon on the job, you have apply to join special units such as the Garda Emergency Response Unit, and undergo special training if you are successful in your application.

In a previous job, I used to have dealings with a detective unit dealing with financial crime, the members of which were permitted to carry guns - but in general, they didn't, unless they were, shall we say, paying friendly visits to certain clients who might reasonably be expected to display an aggressive attitude towards police poking into their business and might reasonably be expected to have firepower at their disposal. (As in, terrorist godfathers and/or high level drug lords, basically.)

I think it's a broadly pretty similar structure in the UK, police there don't carry weapons apart from specialised detective units, anti-terrorist squad, units providing escorts to VIP's, etc.

Although there are sometimes calls for police to be armed in both the UK and Ireland, there is also strong public resistance to this, and indeed many police themselves do not want to go down that route.

Fortunately, even though there is a very significant drugs problem in Ireland, shootings of police and shootings by police are relatively rare events - and that is also more-or-less the case in the UK and much of mainland Europe, although I think in some countries police are routinely armed.

Our police in Ireland and the UK police forces took on the best organised terrorist structure in the world (at the time, in pre Al-Qaeda days) for 30 years and never once, even in the dark days of the early 70's, was it seriously proposed that generalised arming of police be introduced. When I think about it, it's something to be proud of.

As for the American gun nuts, my advice to them is, grow the fuck up.
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:03 PM   #48
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The more you talk about your area of the world, the more you make me want to move there. That sounds like a reasonable setup to me-you have the weapons there just in case the need arises, but you don't flash them all over the place with some sort of stupid bravado.

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As for the American gun nuts, my advice to them is, grow the fuck up.
Fully agreed. They essentially prove why the arguments for the anti-gun (or at least the pro-gun control) side exist.
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:20 PM   #49
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I work in a factory when not at school. Lots of gun enthusiasts there. There's always a magazine called "1st Freedom" in the lunch room that a lot of the guys read through.
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:25 PM   #50
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It's quite a culture shock for me reading that, because, in general, police in Ireland aren't even armed at all, apart from carrying extendable batons and pepper spray.
Speaking of culture shock, there was only one thing that threw me when I moved from New Zealand to Australia. In general things are pretty similar on both sides of the Tasman, but as far as cops carrying guns goes, New Zealand police don't and Australian police do. In New Zealand, a small group of police - the Armed Offenders Squad - have guns, but even then, their use of them is subject to conditions.

I actually sometimes feel less safe when the police have guns. I suppose it comes from growing up in New Zealand, where if a cop had a gun, it meant the Armed Offenders Squad had been called in and some serious shit was going down. A gun is not something I expect to see or am particularly comfortable seeing when I'm just walking through the CBD or going to a cafe. That said, I don't really notice it much any more, but some other people I know who have moved from New Zealand have commented on having the same feelings.
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:37 PM   #51
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A gun is not something I expect to see or am particularly comfortable seeing when I'm just walking through the CBD or going to a cafe.
You'd be in for quite a surprise if you came to the U.S., then. There are many places where it's perfectly legal for people to carry guns into restaurants, bars (which always comforts me, the thought of drunk people with guns), public transportation, public parks, etc.

Why? Hell if I know.
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:38 PM   #52
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The more you talk about your area of the world, the more you make me want to move there.
Well, I will now paint the other side of the story!

It rains. All the time. If it isn't raining, the skies above are usually grey and pregnant with rain. Sometimes the sun peaks through a gap between the clouds and lo, the citizens rejoice. So then you cheer up for a while, things seem to get better. Then it starts raining again. Feck!

I've seen junkies get into vicious fights on trams in Dublin city centre in broad daylight.

At the height of an economic boom, when, it seemed, everyone had a great job, everyone had a good car (usually a high end German marque) everyone was buying property, more and more property, sure you can't lose on property, everyone was hatching some scheme to create even more fake wealth from property, everyone was going on holidays three times a year - if you didn't take at least three holidays a year, you were a loser - Christ, people were flying to New York for the weekend just to buy clothes - at the height of all this madness, in one year (2005) 20 young men aged between 15-25 in one working class suburb of Dublin killed themselves.

It's different now, of course. The suicide virus has spread to the middle classes - even to the formerly wealthy. Rumour has it a troubled ex-billionaire property developer was admitted to a psychiatric hospital after being threatened by suppliers he couldn't pay any more. Rumour has it some of the former merchant princes are gibbering like wrecks in mansions and plushy pads in the Irish Riveria of Dalkey and Killiney and Foxrock. Rumour has it that other, more together souls, have transferred funds to Switzerland, Lichtenstein and Panama. Anything to get it out of reach of the taxman and his grasp.

Ireland ain't no Shangri-La. If you can tolerate a bit of aul rain, it can be a great place to live - at it's best one of the best places in the world. But it can be bloody fecking awful also.


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That sounds like a reasonable setup to me-you have the weapons there just in case the need arises, but you don't flash them all over the place with some sort of stupid bravado.
Indeed. They basically dress like accountants and only occasionally need to point to the shoulder bulge.
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:40 PM   #53
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Maybe "Fuck the Police" is an over the top reaction (great track that it is. Rap back then meant something. It might have meant something hateful, but you couldn't ignore its visceral energy. But I digress), but Americans seem to tolerate a level of use of extreme force by police that simply would not be accepted in Europe.

In Ireland about 12 years ago, a man with known psychiatric issues was shot dead by a police marksman after a siege lasting a few hours. He had been brandishing a shotgun in a threatening manner around his house, shouting at neighbours, that type of thing. Subsequently, there was a big public outcry and in reaction the government announced a tribunal of investigation (more or less like a grand jury process). While no police were charged or convicted with any crime (in my opinion, correctly), they and their superiors had to go through a very stressful process of testifying, accounting for their actions, facing tough questions from legal representatives of the deceased's family, intense media scrutiny, that type of thing - a process which, IIRC, went on for months and months.

Similarly, in the UK, when a drunken barrister with personal issues was shot dead by police in a posh suburb near central London a few years back, there was an inquest which examined in forensic detail the actions of the individual police officers concerned on that fateful day.

The very fact that I remember the above two incidents in reasonable detail, one from 12 years ago, the other from around 4 years ago, shows just how rare such events are, fortunately, on this side of the pond. Not like in the US where if you are some kid with a few issues and you get some crazy idea in your head one day and you go into a shop and buy a gun (with ease) and brandish it around but don't actually discharge it or fire it at anyone, your life can be snuffed out in an instant and the media will talk about it for about a day and then move on to something else. Because you don't matter. You're a statistic.

Maybe "Fuck the Police" is an over-the-top reaction. But I will never accept that cops shooting 14 year olds in the head, for whatever reason, is a right or normal part of a civilised society. And if youse won't hear it from this Dublin knacker, then listen to the words of wisdom from another Dublin knacker, our hero Bano, because he pretty much said the same thing I'm saying, maybe in more poetic fashion, in that (in)famous rant on the Elevation tour.
The thing you have to remember is that the US is FAR bigger than the UK, so these things are bound to happen more frequently (I agree that it's not the only factor). My Dad is from Belfast and it always makes me laugh when he meets someone else from Belfast and they ask what street they grew up on and invariably are familiar with the street. Even compared to Canada, it's a small community. But apart from that, yes, the US does have a big problem with gun culture.

One point you missed in the new article is that the boy wasn't shot in the head (if that gives you any consolation). The head wound was from him falling. He was shot twice in the body. I think that's a little more reasonable
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:48 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by financeguy View Post
Well, I will now paint the other side of the story!

It rains. All the time. If it isn't raining, the skies above are usually grey and pregnant with rain. Sometimes the sun peaks through a gap between the clouds and lo, the citizens rejoice. So then you cheer up for a while, things seem to get better. Then it starts raining again. Feck!

I've seen junkies get into vicious fights on trams in Dublin city centre in broad daylight.

At the height of an economic boom, when, it seemed, everyone had a great job, everyone had a good car (usually a high end German marque) everyone was buying property, more and more property, sure you can't lose on property, everyone was hatching some scheme to create even more fake wealth from property, everyone was going on holidays three times a year - if you didn't take at least three holidays a year, you were a loser - Christ, people were flying to New York for the weekend just to buy clothes - at the height of all this madness, in one year (2005) 20 young men aged between 15-25 in one working class suburb of Dublin killed themselves.

It's different now, of course. The suicide virus has spread to the middle classes - even to the formerly wealthy. Rumour has it a troubled ex-billionaire property developer was admitted to a psychiatric hospital after being threatened by suppliers he couldn't pay any more. Rumour has it some of the former merchant princes are gibbering like wrecks in mansions and plushy pads in the Irish Riveria of Dalkey and Killiney and Foxrock. Rumour has it that other, more together souls, have transferred funds to Switzerland, Lichtenstein and Panama. Anything to get it out of reach of the taxman and his grasp.

Ireland ain't no Shangri-La. If you can tolerate a bit of aul rain, it can be a great place to live - at it's best one of the best places in the world. But it can be bloody fecking awful also.
Heh, rain doesn't bother me any. Every single day might be a bit annoying after a while, but of all the things in the world, I can deal with that pretty well.

Junkies? Eh, well, there's druggies in the U.S., too, hell, in my town, so that's nothing new.

That's awfully tragic to hear that about the rash of suicides-such a shame to have people's lives get that messed up. I've never had the desire to be THAT wealthy. I don't need much out of life-a nice quiet little home, a decent means to get around (basically, I just want a car that won't fall apart on me in 6 months' time. I don't need the latest, flashiest vehicle-I really don't care all that much about cars), and enough money for me to live comfortably so I'm not sitting here deciding between rent/house payments or heat or food. A trip here or there would indeed be nice, but I wouldn't travel that often within a year (and I sure as hell wouldn't take a trip simply to go clothes shopping. If I'm going to another country I'm doing a bit more than that). I wouldn't even begin to know how to create fake property, that's too much work for me and it's a stupid idea to begin with. I wouldn't mess with my money that drastically-my idea of a spending spree is going to a CD store or bookstore and splurging. I know what it's like to go without, so I'd be able to handle struggling much more easy than some people.

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Indeed. They basically dress like accountants and only occasionally need to point to the shoulder bulge.
Sound idea. Never underestimate the element of surprise. By waving your weapons all over, you're pretty much inviting people to fight you anyway.
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:59 PM   #55
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One point you missed in the new article is that the boy wasn't shot in the head (if that gives you any consolation). The head wound was from him falling. He was shot twice in the body. I think that's a little more reasonable
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Old 01-06-2012, 09:09 PM   #56
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Well you commented that it's not ok for police to shoot a 14 year old in the head in a civilized society. They didn't.

And not that I've ever been in the situation, but I think that there would be a different mindset when aiming for someone's head as opposed to aiming for their torso... I dunno why, I just think there would be
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Old 01-07-2012, 12:07 AM   #57
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I'm not comfortable lumping "guns" or those that carry them in one big category. There is law enforcement, there are the militia gun enthusiast types, there are hunters....I know several people in all three categories and often they never overlap. As far as citizens carrying or using guns, that also depends on locale. You can't just be John Q Public, stash a handgun in your bag, and walk around any state of the USA just because you are an American. I don't think I've ever seen a real hand gun in person and my close family are hunters and law enforcement officers. I've never fired a weapon and don't intend to unless unleashing my protection dog counts.
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Old 01-07-2012, 12:28 AM   #58
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You'd be in for quite a surprise if you came to the U.S., then. There are many places where it's perfectly legal for people to carry guns into restaurants, bars (which always comforts me, the thought of drunk people with guns), public transportation, public parks, etc.

Why? Hell if I know.
Oh yeah, when I visited the US, that definitely struck me as bizarre, in an uncomfortable sort of way. Can't fathom why anybody, for instance, would be packing a gun on their family trip to the park.
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Old 01-07-2012, 07:05 AM   #59
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Maybe "Fuck the Police" is an over the top reaction (great track that it is. Rap back then meant something. It might have meant something hateful, but you couldn't ignore its visceral energy. But I digress), but Americans seem to tolerate a level of use of extreme force by police that simply would not be accepted in Europe.

In Ireland about 12 years ago, a man with known psychiatric issues was shot dead by a police marksman after a siege lasting a few hours. He had been brandishing a shotgun in a threatening manner around his house, shouting at neighbours, that type of thing. Subsequently, there was a big public outcry and in reaction the government announced a tribunal of investigation (more or less like a grand jury process). While no police were charged or convicted with any crime (in my opinion, correctly), they and their superiors had to go through a very stressful process of testifying, accounting for their actions, facing tough questions from legal representatives of the deceased's family, intense media scrutiny, that type of thing - a process which, IIRC, went on for months and months.

Similarly, in the UK, when a drunken barrister with personal issues was shot dead by police in a posh suburb near central London a few years back, there was an inquest which examined in forensic detail the actions of the individual police officers concerned on that fateful day.

The very fact that I remember the above two incidents in reasonable detail, one from 12 years ago, the other from around 4 years ago, shows just how rare such events are, fortunately, on this side of the pond. Not like in the US where if you are some kid with a few issues and you get some crazy idea in your head one day and you go into a shop and buy a gun (with ease) and brandish it around but don't actually discharge it or fire it at anyone, your life can be snuffed out in an instant and the media will talk about it for about a day and then move on to something else. Because you don't matter. You're a statistic.

Maybe "Fuck the Police" is an over-the-top reaction. But I will never accept that cops shooting 14 year olds in the head, for whatever reason, is a right or normal part of a civilised society. And if youse won't hear it from this Dublin knacker, then listen to the words of wisdom from another Dublin knacker, our hero Bano, because he pretty much said the same thing I'm saying, maybe in more poetic fashion, in that (in)famous rant on the Elevation tour.
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Old 01-07-2012, 07:07 AM   #60
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One point you missed in the new article is that the boy wasn't shot in the head (if that gives you any consolation). The head wound was from him falling. He was shot twice in the body. I think that's a little more reasonable
maybe my reading comprehension skills are up the creek but this is what the article says:

Quote:
Then she flipped through three close-up photos she took of bullet wounds in her son's body, including one in the back of his head.
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