The Instigator
brian_eggleston
Pro (for)
Winning
5 Points
The Contender
Cowboy0108
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

The USFG should prohibit children from possessing rifles

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
brian_eggleston
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/2/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,005 times Debate No: 33207
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (10)
Votes (1)

 

brian_eggleston

Pro

When the mother of a 5 year-old boy left him alone to play with his 2 year-old sister while she went outside on Tuesday this week, she must have thought "They'll be fine, what could possibly go wrong?"

She must have thought her young son would be mature and responsible enough to be left alone with the 22-caliber rifle, complete with live ammunition, that she bought him for his birthday but, tragically, while she was out the little boy picked up his rifle and shot his baby sister dead. [1]

In my opinion, this woman is clearly an out-and-out, card-carrying mental case who is utterly unfit to be a parent, and the authorities should take her remaining child into care and prosecute her for the criminal negligence that resulted in her daughter's death.

But no, this incident happened in a place called Kentucky, which is in America, and the investigating police there just shrugged their shoulders and concluded that "It's just one of those nightmares - a quick thing that happens when you turn your back," while the coroner described the event as "Just one of those crazy accidents." Incredibly, no further action is being taken against either of the parents of the dead infant. [2]

This is unbelievable! This frothing nut-job of a mother gave her five year-old son a real gun to play with and thought that that was a responsible thing to do! I wonder what she is going to buy her son for Christmas? A crate of dynamite and a box of matches, perhaps?

Blimey, I bet babysitting that little boy is a tough gig...

Babysitter: Put your toys away now, dear, it's seven o'clock and time for bed.

Little boy: Shut your mouth, bitch, or I'll blow your fvcking head off. Now fetch me a beer from the fridge, you cheap whore.

But surely this shooting was just a bizarre, isolated incident? Not so, unfortunately. The Kentucky police said: "it's not uncommon for a 5-year-old to have a gun or for a parent to pass one down to their kid." Indeed, on average, nine children are killed with a gun every day in America. [3]

So what do little kids need guns for? To shoot trespassers such as the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus? To protect themselves from those monsters that live in the closet but only come out at night? Or just to make games of cowboys and Indians more realistic?

I can't think of any legitimate reason why a minor should to own or carry a gun. If they are interested in target shooting they can go to a firing range and hire a gun there, and if they are interested in hunting they should go with responsible adults, borrow one of their guns and fire it under strict supervision.

Children aren't allowed to drive, vote, drink, smoke, have sex, serve as jurors in court or do lots of other things adults are allowed to do because they are not deemed to be legally responsible, so why on earth are they allowed to run around with lethal weapons?

Although children are not allowed to possess handguns there is no Federal restriction on their possession of rifles. This is madness: and thousands of innocent children are killed or injured every year as a result of the US Federal Government's failure to legislate to prohibit children from possessing rifles.

Thank you.

[1] http://edition.cnn.com...
[2] http://www.kentucky.com...
[3] http://www.med.umich.edu...
[4] http://www.justice.gov...
Cowboy0108

Con

1. This is a tragedy.
2. This is the mother's fault.
3. The mother should have taught her child that guns can be dangerous when handled improperly. Notice that I added, " when handled improperly". Guns do not accidently go off. Someone sets them off. It is actually easy to handle a gun properly. It is easy to learn. It is easy to teach. The mother should have taught that child.
4. No action should be taken against the mother. She lost her daughter. Why would she need to be punished any more than that? Prisons should be about reform, not outright punishment. The woman has been reformed.
5 Nine children are killed by guns every day in America. I will not disagree. However, this data does not specify whether this is just because the kids were playing around, or if they were killed by a criminal. If it was a criminal, the parent could have prevented it by owning a gun. The child could have actually shot the robber and prevented their death. Let us assume that the deaths are just because of irresponsibility by the child, it is just nine. Sad, I know. But the hundreds of car accidents that kill minors in both America and Europe is an outright tragedy. You do not see the British outlawing driving do you?
6. Do not blame the government. Blame the mother. Blame the irresponsible parent. Why punish those who are responsible. I was eight when I got my first .22, I never got shot or shot anyone. Why punish me? 9 get killed everyday, a million do not.
7. Guns are guns, not weapons. They can be used as weapons, but are not inherently weapons. This is just as a screwdriver can be used as a weapon. What right does a child have to run around with a weapon as lethal as a pocket knife?
8. Maybe five is too young, but minors do have reason to carry a gun. Protection.
9. The mother did not just hand the boy the gun and say go play with it. He got the gun as a gift. He gave it to him so that he could learn to shoot and kill a few squirrels. That is what people do when in SouthEast America.
10. You seem to be making it apparent that the child just did not like his sister and wanted her dead. This was a tragic accident. Not some murder.
My sources are simply logic, common sense, and personal experience. There is no need for me to include internet sources for this.
I will let you post your next argument.
Debate Round No. 1
brian_eggleston

Pro

I would like to thank Cowboy0108 for accepting this debate and reply to the points he raised in turn as follows:

1. "This is a tragedy."

Agreed.

2. "This is the mother's fault."

Agreed.

3. "The mother should have taught her child that guns can be dangerous when handled improperly..."

This is why guns should only be fired under strict adult supervision, ideally within a controlled environment. Certainly, firearms should never be left within reach of children at home.

4. "No action should be taken against the mother..."

I am sure that this woman's defence lawyers would argue that point and, if she shows remorse, the judge may hand down a non-custodial sentence. That is if she was going to court, but she isn't.

5. "Nine children are killed by guns every day in America...""

These are fair points and it's true that guns don't kill people, people kill people, but guns do make it easier for people to kill people.

Similarly, on an international level, nuclear weapons make it easier for governments to kill people, which is why we are all so concerned about rogue states such as North Korea and Iran developing the technology to deliver nuclear devices on ballistic missiles.

With regard to rifles, certain adults are not deemed responsible enough to own a rifle: me, for example, because I am not a US Citizen; but it's no problem for kids to possess one. Indeed, the weapon used in the shooting of the little girl as a Crickett, a light-weight .22 calibre rifle, which comes in bright colours like toys and is marketed to children with great success: they sell 60 thousand of them a year. [1}

Cars probably kill more kids than guns, that may be true, but that's why we don't let children drive.

6. "Do not blame the government..."

Nine a day adds up over a year: we are looking at thousands of kids killed or injured in accidental shootings. It is the government's responsibility to do everything in their power to protect its citizens from coming to unnecessary harm.

7. "Guns are guns, not weapons...."

Firearms are designed to kill either animals or humans, though air-rifles can be used for target shooting, I don't see what other use they could be put to, apart from perhaps a bottle-opener if you fancy a beer and have nothing else to open the bottle wth.

8. "Maybe five is too young, but minors do have reason to carry a gun. Protection."

All I can say is that children that need to carry guns for protection must live in really tough neighbourhoods. But if all the kids were deprived of guns those neighbourhoods would become safer places.

9. "The mother did not just hand the boy the gun and say go play with it..."

"Really? Parents buy their kids guns so that they can go about shooting cute little squirrels that never do anybody any harm? That's not very nice, is it boys and girls? And I bet young readers of Beatrix Potter's children's books would be shocked and upset to learn that Squirrel Nutkin"s American cousins are being slaughtered for fun by school kids there. [2]

10. "You seem to be making it apparent that the child just did not like his sister and wanted her dead. This was a tragic accident..."

We just don't know. The little boy probably said it was an accident but maybe his baby sister irritated him in some way? Perhaps she wouldn"t let him play with one of her toys or she pulled his hair? We will only get a better idea if the boy starts shooting pets or other children as he grows up - if he's allowed to keep his gun there"s always the danger that he will misuse it again.

Thank you.

[1] http://abclocal.go.com...
[2] http://www.best-childrens-books.com...
Cowboy0108

Con

Starting with what we disagree:
3. Firearms can easily be within arms reach of children at home, the parent just needs to teach the child not to touch. Of course supervision would be necessary just to teach the child how to shoot, what to shoot, and how to be safe while shooting. Controlled environments are not required, especially not in Kentucky with a very small population density.
4. I do not believe that the mother should be punished any more than losing her daughter. This is my opinion, but still, why just go and outright punish the woman.
5. "Guns make it easier to kill people" Though this is true, a screwdriver is just as easy to kill someone with. You can run with a knife and fall on it. That also kills kids, but you are not complaining about knife control. Society has demonized guns. Why, I do not know. Knives are just as dangerous
Cars kill more kids than guns, but your argument that that is why we do not let kids drive is irrelevant. The kids still get killed even though they are not driving. So why not make it illegal to drive or drive with a kid in the car. Again, society has demonized guns, and they are the smaller threat.
7. Fine, blame the government for the nine a day who get shot, but only after car deaths are eliminated.
8. I am sixteen and if a person breaks into my house when I am alone, I WILL shoot them. I will keep shooting until I run out of bullets.
9. All that I will say about that is that there is nothing wrong with hunting.
10. True, we do not know, but until you do, you cannot really blame the mother or child or say that it was done on purpose. You do not know.
Thank you.
Debate Round No. 2
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by hereiam2005 4 years ago
hereiam2005
Call it an amicus brief.
Posted by Smithereens 4 years ago
Smithereens
hereiam, this isn't your debate.
Posted by hereiam2005 4 years ago
hereiam2005
"Guns are guns, not weapons. They can be used as weapons, but are not inherently weapons."
weap"on (wpn)
n.
1. An instrument of attack or defense in combat, as a gun, missile, or sword.
The American Heritage" Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Guns, by definition, are weapon.

"The mother did not just hand the boy the gun and say go play with it. He got the gun as a gift. He gave it to him so that he could learn to shoot and kill a few squirrels." They call good intention with fatal results *manslaughter* - criminally negligent manslaughter.

"You seem to be making it apparent that the child just did not like his sister and wanted her dead. This was a tragic accident. Not some murder." Wrong. No one said that. Criminally negligent manslaughter is still manslaughter.
Posted by hereiam2005 4 years ago
hereiam2005
"" Indeed, on average, nine children are killed with a gun every day in America."
This is irrelevant."

This is not irrelevant. When it comes governance, this is important: to weight pros against cons. Weather some inconvenience is more important or the tragedies that can be prevented are more important.

"9 get killed everyday, a million do not" This is a false argument. 9 get kill everyday as a result of misuses of gun. It is not true that a million other die when such misuse of gun is prevented.
"But the hundreds of car accidents that kill minors in both America and Europe is an outright tragedy. You do not see the British outlawing driving do you?" Wrong argument again. There are license programs that you got suspended if you misuse your car. There are compulsory insurance program that you must follow. There are laws against drunk driving, heck, even law against drinking while in a vehicle. There are vast penalties for car misuse. Heck, cars even got keys so that minors can't use it. And parents, as legal guardians, are personally responsible for any crime committed by their child.
"Prisons should be about reform, not outright punishment." Are you sure you are talking about America? Then what is the purpose of death sentence then?
"Guns do not accidently go off" They does.
"It is easy to learn. It is easy to teach." There are time for everything. Try to teach 1st grade math to a newborn - its not that easy. Kids sometime are to young to learn about personal responsibility. And sometime they forget. Who should be responsible if something goes wrong?
"I was eight when I got my first .22, I never got shot or shot anyone. Why punish me?" I know alot about politics at 7 and wanted to vote. I drink alcohol at 9 and never got drunk. I had responsible sex at 15 and fell in love and wanted to get married at 16, and get the means to do it, why punish me? Because, it for the betterment of the society at large.
Posted by hereiam2005 4 years ago
hereiam2005
People under 18 can't be trusted to make decision when it comes to sex and alcohol. Heck, they can't even see sex without Parental Guidance. And they are trusted with weapon which with one tiny mistake can easily kill another. At 5, no less.
This is crazy.
Posted by Smithereens 4 years ago
Smithereens
But what about the novelty of it all?
Posted by 1Devilsadvocate 4 years ago
1Devilsadvocate
In a private transaction, federal law prohibits the transfer or the sale of a handgun or ammunition, for use only in handguns, to individuals under 18 years of age. Although, there are certain exceptions in federal law, that if met, would allow an individual to transfer a handgun or ammunition, for use only in handguns, to someone under 18 years of age.
There is no federal law concerning minimum age for the transfer or sale of a firearm that is not defined as a handgun, such as rifles, semiautomatic rifles, short-barreled rifles, shotguns, short-barreled shotgun, etc., for transactions that don't involve federal firearms licensees.
http://en.wikipedia.org...
Posted by 1Devilsadvocate 4 years ago
1Devilsadvocate
" Indeed, on average, nine children are killed with a gun every day in America."
This is irrelevant.
Posted by Kwhite7298 4 years ago
Kwhite7298
It is
Posted by Ragnar 4 years ago
Ragnar
I could have sworn the minimum age is 18.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by LotusNG 4 years ago
LotusNG
brian_egglestonCowboy0108Tied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
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Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro did a brilliant job at convincing, and actually had sources (Con should have had some for the car deaths or the "million a day" who are saved by guns (his wording implied that this is what he meant)).