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Would you take a life?What circumstance?

CarolC 27 Jul 01 - 09:19 PM
Lonesome EJ 27 Jul 01 - 08:10 PM
Little Hawk 27 Jul 01 - 07:13 PM
Jack the Sailor 27 Jul 01 - 05:48 PM
Rick Fielding 27 Jul 01 - 05:24 PM
Kim C 27 Jul 01 - 03:43 PM
English Jon 27 Jul 01 - 01:17 PM
GUEST,petr 27 Jul 01 - 01:15 PM
Midchuck 27 Jul 01 - 12:54 PM
Jack the Sailor 27 Jul 01 - 12:53 PM
catspaw49 27 Jul 01 - 12:18 PM
Little Hawk 27 Jul 01 - 12:10 PM
Kim C 27 Jul 01 - 10:11 AM
Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull 27 Jul 01 - 03:08 AM
Ebbie 27 Jul 01 - 02:22 AM
GUEST,Ralph in Leeds 26 Jul 01 - 09:02 PM
Grab 26 Jul 01 - 07:42 PM
Gareth 26 Jul 01 - 07:13 PM
Kim C 26 Jul 01 - 06:27 PM
SharonA 26 Jul 01 - 05:18 PM
Little Hawk 26 Jul 01 - 03:50 PM
Kim C 26 Jul 01 - 03:44 PM
Little Hawk 26 Jul 01 - 03:39 PM
SharonA 26 Jul 01 - 03:08 PM
Steve in Idaho 26 Jul 01 - 02:57 PM
Little Hawk 26 Jul 01 - 02:55 PM
Steve in Idaho 26 Jul 01 - 02:45 PM
Steve in Idaho 26 Jul 01 - 02:31 PM
Little Hawk 26 Jul 01 - 02:22 PM
Steve in Idaho 26 Jul 01 - 02:16 PM
mousethief 26 Jul 01 - 02:01 PM
Jim Krause 26 Jul 01 - 01:47 PM
Steve in Idaho 26 Jul 01 - 01:26 PM
Midchuck 26 Jul 01 - 01:15 PM
English Jon 26 Jul 01 - 12:53 PM
Steve in Idaho 26 Jul 01 - 12:50 PM
mousethief 26 Jul 01 - 12:37 PM
Steve in Idaho 26 Jul 01 - 12:34 PM
English Jon 26 Jul 01 - 12:20 PM
Ringer 26 Jul 01 - 12:05 PM
Little Hawk 25 Jul 01 - 06:34 PM
katlaughing 25 Jul 01 - 06:12 PM
Rick Fielding 25 Jul 01 - 06:03 PM
Ebbie 25 Jul 01 - 03:32 PM
Steve in Idaho 25 Jul 01 - 03:23 PM
Jande 25 Jul 01 - 03:20 PM
John MacKenzie 25 Jul 01 - 03:14 PM
annamill 25 Jul 01 - 02:34 PM
katlaughing 25 Jul 01 - 02:31 PM
Steve in Idaho 25 Jul 01 - 02:27 PM
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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: CarolC
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 09:19 PM

Rick, I've been thinking a lot about the question you posed earlier up on the thread about that movie. It's an interesting dilemma, isn't it?

Of course, they couldn't do it this way in a movie or it wouldn't make much of a movie, but I was thinking about how something like that might play out in real life.

What's got me wondering is what would happen in a situation like that, if the guy who felt that his life's work was threatened tried to find some sort of arrangement that would be mutually acceptable to both of them. One in which he felt his work was safe, and she felt that she could get on with her life and forget about him. I guess I'm assuming that the guy didn't really want to have the woman killed but just felt that he had no other choice.

Maybe it's just the idealist pollyanna in me, but your question got me thinking about that.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 08:10 PM

80% of the guns picked up on Civil War battlefields un fired? Hmmm. Since we killed more Americans in that war than died in all our other wars combined I wonder (but don't REALLY question) about the percentage

I believe this is close to the truth. War has always been to a great extent about intimidation rather than murder : By displaying sheer numbers and iron will, inducing the enemy to flee the field. Even in the blood bath of the Civil War, the desire to AVOID killing or being killed must have been overwhelming among a vast number of combatants. Although bayonets were general issue on both sides in that war, they were seldom used even in infantry charges and melees, the men instead choosing to engage each one another using fists and rifle-butts.

Would I take a life? To stop a murder or terminate a tyrant, certainly. To kill another man on the field of battle would be much, much more difficult.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 07:13 PM

Hey, Spaw - Funny you should mention the muppets. My personal mascot has for many years been a stuffed Kermit the Frog figure, about 16 inches tall! I don't think there's any connection with the wounded frog incident. I do think that if we were required to slaughter our own beef and pork and chickens, that vegetarianism would skyrocket in North America. Times have changed in that respect since the frontier days.

Midchuck - you are absolutely right. The mental attitude is the key. The undercurrent of violence in Mexico was extremely apparent when I was there, as well as the constant presence of a very dangerous and corrupt police force. Mexico and the USA are extremely violent countries, as countries go, and it's due to the prevailing mentality in both cases. As you point out, the Mexicans manage to commit most of their murders with knives. If they had guns it would probably be even worse.

Canada is a pretty peaceful country. Again, it's the prevailing mentality that is the key.

Cuba seemed to be pretty peaceful to me when I was there. The streets were safe at night, and people seemed relaxed. However, a couple of my young friends told me that a fair number of fights arise due to drinking (rum, usually), and those often involve knives, machetes, or whatever is to hand. I did not see any such incident. I saw several in Mexico. I do not doubt that it happens in Cuba, but the place felt way, way safer than Mexico or the downtown of most large American cities.

- LH


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 05:48 PM

Point about the ethics well taken. But murder is motive and opportunity. Guns increase the opportunity. I know I would kill someone because a couple of times I was stopped from doing so. Two knees on the other guy's chest, hand s on throat and him turning blue. If I had had a gun they would have been dead before my friend pulled me off.

Neither occaision had much to do with ethics. It was a hard, unexpected. blow to my face and me coming up swinging


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 05:24 PM

Thanks English Jon for reading my first post. OBVIOUSLY it's about "the ethics of killing". We've had dozens of threads about whether guns should be "a right" or not. More arguments about the "constitution" or The Bible are probably not of much interest.

I was curious about how folks felt about taking a life, and how far they'd need to be pushed to do it. Thanks for the feedback folks.

Rick


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Kim C
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 03:43 PM

Like I said, all the guns in my house are very well-behaved...

(Spaw I am glad to see the operation left your sense of humor intact!)


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: English Jon
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 01:17 PM

I think the point of the thread is more to do with the ethics of killing rather than the have gun/not have gun thing. You could kill someone quite easily with a well aimed banjo. Obviously it's impractical to ban every object that could ever be used to cause harm, but I do think it is in global society's best interests to adopt a culture of non violence.

Norton made an interesting point further up:

"The one thing I do know is that the core concept of an armed military being sent where the government wants with consent of the governed makes all of us culpable in the killing. Being the payee is no better than being the one paid in my opinion.

Makes us all assasins by proxy doesn't it?"

I don't know much about how politics works in the states, but in the U.K. we have a party system, where one party always wins whatever. So we have a choice of

Labour Conservative

(currently, politically almost exactly the same)

Smaller parties with insufficient support to gain a majority.

Or, If you don't like any of the buggers, you can say so on your voting card, in which case it is considered "spoilt" and counted as void.

In the last election, 4 in 10 did not vote at all (which I think should be considered a vote against all candidates), and due to the electoral system in the U.K. only those who live in marginal constituencies can make a difference anyway. Where I live, the Conservative candidate always wins, for example.

4 in 10 by the way is a greater proportion of the electorate than voted for the Labour party this time. I think they got something like 36% of the remaining 6 in 10 who did vote.

Also, there is no Socialist party in the U.K. with sufficient credibility to attract enough votes to gain a seat in Westminster (a few in Scotland, apparently) etc etc. Basically, The U.K. is far from being a democracy.

So, effectively, what I pay in tax goes straight to a body who exist contrary to my wishes, and they spend it however they see fit. I'd far rather it went to the health service, education etc, but large chunks of it go to the military against my personal wishes. Therefore I deny culpability for deaths caused by the military.

EJ


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: GUEST,petr
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 01:15 PM

If all the guns in America were fired simultaneously the energy involved would be enough to stop Californias energy crisis.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Midchuck
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 12:54 PM

It's a gunslinger mentality, having the weapon in hand make one more likely to act. The possibility of the other guy having a weapon increases the fear and makes one moke likely to shoot.

Can't argue with your numbers, but I think you spoke a greater truth than you knew, when you said it was the gunslinger mentality.

The Swiss have a gun in every home. They have to. It's a law. And they have a murder rate comparable to other european countries. I am told that the Mexicans are for the most part gunless. They have restrictive gun laws, and most people can't afford them anyway. But they evidently approach U. S. murder rates, relying on nothing but knives.

It's a question of mental attitude, not the available tools.

Note that, with the amount of guns in the U. S., if each and every gun in the country were used to commit one, and only one, homicide, you'd have to bring people in from outside to finish the job. The U. S. population would be gone before all the guns had been used.

Ergo: the great majority of guns do no harm.

Peter.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 12:53 PM

There are about 4 times as many people in USA than Britain 30,000/19 = 1598, Sixteen hundred times the number of gun related Murders....

I moved to Toronto in 1989. There wer 32 Murders in Toronto that year. Something like 1,500 murders in Detroit (a smaller city) that same year. Admittedly a bad year for Detroit but America is certianly the G8 champ for violent crime. whether it is per capita or by gross numbers.

It's a gunslinger mentality, having the weapon in hand make one more likely to act. The possibility of the other guy having a weapon increases the fear and possibly makes one more likely to shoot.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: catspaw49
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 12:18 PM

Well, that would explain why the Muppets never come to Orillia.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 12:10 PM

I took a frog's life once. A tree had fallen and it had sheared off the frog's eyes...both of them...and left the rest of the frog intact. I was horrified, and killed the frog as an act of mercy, with a hammer...that being the only thing at hand which seemed workable.

It was an utterly horrifying and sickening experience. I had to hit that frog 3 times before it died.

I sure as hell hope I never kill a human being.

- LH


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Kim C
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 10:11 AM

The population of the UK is also a LOT smaller than the US. But it could also mean that the folks in the UK aren't very good shots. ;-) How many murders were there overall in the UK last year? Gunshot stats alone don't tell the whole story. I seem to remember hearing a news report a year or so ago about two teenage girls in England who BEAT a woman to death. In the absence of a gun, a person with a murderous intent will find some other way to carry it out. Remember that guy in Japan a couple of months ago who attacked a group of people with a knife?

I'm sure our GUEST Anti-Smoking Crusader can tell us that more people died in the US last year from smoking-related illnesses than by gunshots.

Death is usually tragic anyhow, whether by disease or injury. Why do we like to put so much emphasis on gunshots?

When I took tae kwon do (this was years ago) we were never told not to fight outside the class. What we were told, is that we should never fight to show off, but fighting in defense of yourself, or another who was incapable of defense, was fair game. That was why we were there, after all.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 03:08 AM

I heard this on the radio-Number of people killed with gund in USA last year 30,000
Number of people killed with guns in UK

19


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Ebbie
Date: 27 Jul 01 - 02:22 AM

"Every country or state that has outlawed weapons has seen a huge increase in crime rates." Is this true?

Ebbie


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: GUEST,Ralph in Leeds
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 09:02 PM

Yes, I would...I have. In anger. Would do it again if pushed.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Grab
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 07:42 PM

Thing is, all of us are reasonably intelligent, reasonably self- and mutually-respecting ppl. This is very different from the tiny minority who (as per police statistics) commit the majority of crimes. If everyone has the right to own a gun, that includes this minority. Vetting is a good step to avoiding this situation, but it's not perfect (Dunblane). If threatened, we will shoot at the person threatening us - the trouble is, that other person may not even need that reason, and may be quite prepared to shoot you on sight. So widespread ownership of guns (or any other weapon) is a dangerous thing, at least without the proper teaching/indoctrination so you won't use it on others.

Military training is designed to indoctrinate you to make it psychologically easier for you to kill. In my teens I received the opposite training from my Taekwondo instructor - that you must never fight outside the class. She did that so successfully that one boy in the class was beaten up bcos he wouldn't fight back, and it worked pretty well on me since I previously always used to be in fights. That _doesn't_ mean that I have an easy temper, just that I have a high threshold at which I become provoked (a very thick skin, in other words) which is superficially similar. But there's a few times when that's been crossed, and fortunately the person involved wasn't around. Once was when a friend at uni was being racially harassed - I went over to see him with the single purpose of at least threatening the person responsible, and I'm glad in retrospect that the culprit wasn't around so that the "most" wasn't explored! I have refused to do self-defence training with my wife, on the grounds that the one time I did she seemed to really be fighting, and that kicked my instincts in. I stopped and refused to continue bcos I knew that if she had caught me with an attack, I would almost certainly have responded and hurt her without thinking about it or being able to stop myself, and I couldn't have lived with myself if I'd done that. The flipside of the restraint that training teaches you is that when the instincts are required, you're much more likely to cause harm to the other person since you generally have better skills - this is as true for shooting as for unarmed martial arts.

As far as self-defence or the defence of others goes, the first instinct must _always_ be to attack the person with as much force as possible until they are no longer a threat - in my case that will be hands and feet, or a kitchen knife if I'm at home. Whether they live or die after that is not important - sorry to be so callous, but I believe (and my instincts agree) that you and/or the person/ppl you're protecting have more rights than an attacker.

Sorry this is such a personal note. I tried making it general, but I realised there was no way I could say "in theory in this case, I'd do this or that". I'm quite introspective and I know myself enough to say that theory will have nothing to do with it. (I've rephrased this to cut a rather more detailed explanation, which was a bit too much). This is not pleasant to hear, but it's the only truthful answer to the question. It isn't pleasant to think about either since I don't like being so out of control and I don't like what could happen, but it's not optional, it goes with my body and brain, and I just have to deal with it. Hence I tend to avoid situations where I could get in fights.

Graham.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Gareth
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 07:13 PM

When a man puts on a Red Coat or a Blue Jacket does he discard his natural instincts or feelings ?

I am to young to have done National Service in the UK (draft) and to old to voulenteer.

But the thought what if will always be what if ?

And with that I'am to my bed, if the dog will let me, for I've got to take a lethal object to Swansea in the morning, its called a motor car.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Kim C
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 06:27 PM

Sure, a blow-dart is a weapon, and can be just as dangerous as a gun in the hands of someone who knows how to use it.

I think they do pick little wild blueberries out of the permafrost...


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: SharonA
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 05:18 PM

Or he might have shot his parents, too, and then himself. And THEN where would we be?!

Little Hawk sez: "Some assassins also feel highly motivated and justified in what they are doing, as in the case of religiously or politically motivated assassinations." True; I wasn't really thinking of them when I wrote my "point (c)"; I was thinking of the assassins in Jon's argument who are paid to kill, but I was assuming he meant those who have no personal reasons for murdering. Then again, religiously or politically motivated assassins often receive nothing but the satisfaction that they are living by their convictions (while, of course, their victims are not living at all!).

KimC: But a blow-dart is a weapon, too, isn't it? How about telling the Alaskans to become vegetarians instead, and to till the permafrost to grow their food? /:^)

SharonA


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 03:50 PM

Nope, but if he'd had a .38, he would have probably been more dangerous...at least at a distance.

- LH


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Kim C
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 03:44 PM

Like Spaw said.... if you've got a weapon, and I've got a weapon (or even if I don't), and I want to live, I'll try to kill you. And no one will ever convince me that defending myself or my family is wrong.

All of the guns in my house are very well-behaved, with the possible exception of my flintlock, Athena. Athena has a tendency to hang fire after about 10 shots because her barrel gets fouled. Other than that, she is a fine, upstanding member of my household. My daddy taught her pretty well.

It's really unfortunate when guns go bad. Gun owners need to be more watchful that their firearms don't fall into bad company.

I would also like to point out, that there are still a few parts of the world (even in the US) where people have to kill their own food or else go hungry. Sure, go tell those folks in the middle of Alaska they can't have any guns, and they'll have to go back to using blow darts to kill the caribou.

In addition, lives can be taken with other methods besides firearms. Not too long ago, a man in Japan was arrested for swinging a knifeblade around and cutting a bunch of folks. Even in a country without guns, people still get hurt.

and lastly, I don't think Cain shot Abel with a .38 revolver.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 03:39 PM

Good points, Sharon. I think inner intention is the vital matter in evaluating any act in a moral sense.

In other words, don't judge the book by its cover.

This is why crimes of passion (resulting in murder) bother me less than planned crimes, such as cold-bloodedly fraudulent schemes to rob a great many people through a phony stock promotion or whatever...

Any of us is capable of a crime of passion, under certain circumstances...that does not make us "bad" people, per se.

I think if humanity generally had a spiritual breakthrough, and "woke up", then people would not want to go to war with each other.

Military training is designed to overcome a person's natural reluctance to imperil his own life and take the lives of others. Then there's patriotism, which works strongly on the mind of a soldier. Most soldiers feel justified in what they are doing most of the time.

Some assassins also feel highly motivated and justified in what they are doing, as in the case of religiously or politically motivated assassinations. Just one example: the German military people who tried to blow up Hitler in his bunker...too bad they did not succeed.

Timothy McVeigh obviously felt very justified in what he did, which is no comfort to those he hurt, but how does one make a final judgement on the morality of a man in such a state of mind?

It's not a simple case of black and white we've got here.

- LH


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: SharonA
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 03:08 PM

English Jon sez: "I feel that killing people is the same whether you're a soldier or an assassin. Being paid to do it on behalf of someone else, a private individual or a government makes no difference."

Agreed, Jon, that in each case the "killee" is just as dead. However, I think there is a difference between the assassin's action and the soldier's action:

(a) While the assassin does his deed voluntarily, the soldier may have been drafted or (s)he may have been tempted into enlisting by the promised college-education benefits or may have signed up for some reason other than the opportunity to kill. The soldier's planned "career path" may have had nothing to do with active duty but, once (s)he was in, his/her life was no longer his/her own and (s)he may have found him/herself on the battlefield unwillingly.

(b) While the assassin gets paid for his kill, a soldier is paid whether (s)he kills or not. In other words, the soldier is not being paid to kill specifically.

(c) While the assassin kills for monetary gain and/or personal privilege, the soldier may well feel that the "loftier goal" of defense of country or defense of the free world (or whatever part of the world [s]he is from!) is a greater good for which (s)he is willing to take another life.

(d) While the assassin's victim is usually surprised and is not actively trying to kill the assassin before the victim is approached, the soldier's victim is as dedicated to killing him/her as (s)he is to killing his/her enemy, so the element of self-defense comes into play.

BTW I apologize if I offended anyone with my flippant statement about how "we" Americans love "our" guns. I shouldn't have generalized. Personally, I like target shooting, but I hate to see guns used irresponsibly (last Mother's Day, I performed at a Million Mom March rally to promote gun safety legislation).

SharonA


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 02:57 PM

LH - - - No Problem :-)


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 02:55 PM

Could be I'm just in a lousy mood...

I think that any point of view seems to make sense under certain conditions. That's why people frequently end up contradicting both themselves and others.

I can imagine times when I would want a gun, and times when I would not necessarily want one. One thing that worries me about guns is, they make it a little too easy to kill someone. Better if it's not that easy. I might well have killed one or two people by now if I'd had a gun right there and handy.

I have a friend who is definitely bloodthirsty, in the sense that he would like to see this group or that group of people done away with....his standard solution to every social problem is to exterminate the offenders (whomever they might be presumed to be)...or at least deport them (to where is always the question...).

On the other hand, as far as I know, he's never done anything harmful to anyone, and in fact has been a good friend to many, including me.

I'm at a loss to explain it. Life is weird. Pardon my lousy mood.

- LH


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 02:45 PM

And this is my final response - May Peace abide with all of us - Good Night Sweet Prince wherever you are - - -SN


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 02:31 PM

...those to whom a bloodthirsty ferocity and combativeness comes naturally can't seem to find respect for those to whom it doesn't...and vice versa!

I don't know LH - Why is that?

You are both disgusted with one another's lack of good sense, decency, humanity, and responsibility.

I can't recall saying I was disgusted with anyone - it appears to me to be the exact opposite - we are all showing good sense, sticking to our beliefs, haven't really called anyone names, are deeply vested in upholding our version of humanity - i.e. retaining life if at all possible - and are being responsible through our public expression of our belief. If no one talks about it how do we share perspective?

This bloodthirsty thing is really wierd - where does that come from??

SN


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 02:22 PM

Funny...those to whom a bloodthirsty ferocity and combativeness comes naturally can't seem to find respect for those to whom it doesn't...and vice versa! You are both disgusted with one another's lack of good sense, decency, humanity, and responsibility.

Why don't you both just let the other one be what he is with good grace?

People are different, but that doesn't necessarily mean that anyone is WRONG...in an ultimate sense.

We all have free will. Is it any wonder that different people choose to use it differently?

There is a time and place for everything, guns included, I suspect. I don't own one at this time. It hasn't made a rat's ass of difference in my life, but it might have under different circumstances...in which case I might have owned a gun...or not...who knows?

I've already died any number of times. More than I can count or imagine. Why get all bent out of shape over the possibility of it happening once more? It's gonna happen eventually anyway, whether or not I own a gun. Don't sweat it, cos death may not be so bad as you think.

Chew on that.

- LH


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 02:16 PM

Bloodthirsty? You can't be serious. As a self adjudicated assasin, philosophically speaking that is, it doesn't have anything to do with a lust for blood.

The core of all military and police groups is that a set of people with like minded ideology decided to protect that same ideology with armed professionals taken from their own citizenry.

In that context we are all citizens of our respective ideological inclinations and to defend one's neighbors from another who seeks to destroy the peace and harmony is being responsible to self and country/ideology.

I laud Jim for having the personal belief system strong enough to risk it all to not participate in his country of choice's decision. I wonder at the rest who simply condemn without having the conviction to actually do something.

SN


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: mousethief
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 02:01 PM

Humane neighbors?? Those neighbors wouldn't be so humane if they allowed some one person to terrorize the rest without interceding. They would be part of the problem and not the solution in my opinion.

They'd all be dead if they're less bloodthirsty than the nasty neighbor.

Alex


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Jim Krause
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 01:47 PM

Rick,
We are all pretty complicated beings. Some of the paradoxes you mention about yourself I see in myself also. For instance, I registered as a Concientious Objector during the Viet Nam unpleasantness, but I very much enjoy target shooting at the local muzzleloading gun club. There are several jobs I will not apply for, because I would feel the need to report for work armed. These include liquor store clerk, convenience store clerk, and certainly any sort of police work. But had I been born in Canada, I might have really tried hard to justify the compromise in my beliefs so I could join the RCMP. I just love horses, and dressage is great fun.

As to taking a life, I hope never, never to be in a situation where I must make that decision. So I try to avoid situations where I may have to make that choice. And that includes my choice of neighborhoods in which to live.
Jim


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 01:26 PM

Guess that makes me an assasin by your standards as I did receive pay to kill others. And opinions and judgements are different. Yes I spent time in the military, even work for them as a social worker trying to get families to harmonize instead of fight, and am quite proud of my service. So I won't expect you to agree with me either.

The one thing I do know is that the core concept of an armed military being sent where the government wants with consent of the governed makes all of us culpable in the killing. Being the payee is no better than being the one paid in my opinion.

Makes us all assasins by proxy doesn't it?

SN


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Midchuck
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 01:15 PM

I wouldn't feel honorable if I had a gun...

Huh?

I wouldn't feel honorable if I did not have a gun.

I would be refusing to accept my share of responsibility for the protection of the safety and freedom of myself and my family, and dumping it on someone else.

"Unarmed free citizen" is an oxymoron. IMNSHO.

Peter.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: English Jon
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 12:53 PM

"Guns are bad? I didn't know they possessed life and the ability to provide a rationale. Guns aren't squat - it's what people do with them that determines if they are appropriate or not. What an irresponsible statement! People need to take responsibility for what they do - not blame what they use as the problem."

Yes that's exactly what I meant, but you've said it better than me.

"And what the hell is a "proper job?""

Well, that's a whole other level of philosophy, but in this context, I mean one where you're paid to do something constructive rather than kill people. Point is, I could earn far more in the British army than I do in the entertainment industry, fine in many ways military life is very attractive. Good rates of pay, holidays, you get to travel, clear promotional path, good pension etc, all in all, quite a good lifestyle, but I couldn't ever join, because I find the core concept totally disagreeable. You're a military man, Norton and I don't expect you to agree with me.

"who made you the judge of what is honorable and what is not?"

Well, nobody, but the thread did ask for peoples opinions, certainly, I wouldn't feel honorable if I had a gun.

Everyone has to make their own moral judgement. However, I feel that killing people is the same whether you're a soldier or an assasin. Being paid to do it on behalf of someone else, a private individual or a government makes no difference. I guess it's a conscience thing.

EJ


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 12:50 PM

Humane neighbors?? Those neighbors wouldn't be so humane if they allowed some one person to terrorize the rest without interceding. They would be part of the problem and not the solution in my opinion.

Are we flaming yet??


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: mousethief
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 12:37 PM

If everyone had a gun then no one could terroize anyone

What a lot of hooey! Anyone more willing to use his gun than someone who places a higher value on human life could terrorize his more humane neighbors.

Alex


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 12:34 PM

Guns are bad? I didn't know they possessed life and the ability to provide a rationale. Guns aren't squat - it's what people do with them that determines if they are appropriate or not. What an irresponsible statement! People need to take responsibility for what they do - not blame what they use as the problem.

As far a soldiering being a stupid occupation - who made you the judge of what is honorable and what is not?

If everyone had a gun then no one could terroize anyone. Every country or state that has outlawed weapons has seen a huge increase in crime rates. Where concealed carry permits have been made available the crime rates have decreased. You are more at risk from seeing your doctor than you are of being injured by a gun.

And what the hell is a "proper job?"

Not incensed - in a state of umbrage.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: English Jon
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 12:20 PM

This is a bit of a stupid question.

I'm not a great one for Bibles, but I seem to remember:

"Thou shalt do no murder"

in between "look after your parents" and "don't sleep with the next-door neighbor's wife".

Feel quite strongly about this one. To deliberately kill another person is, in my opinion, the worst thing anyone can do. My personal feeling re "the military" is that it would all be fine if it could do its job without violence, but untill it can, I'll be campaigning for it to be decommisioned. I think that people see killing (and being killed) in a "war" situation as glorious in some strange way. "Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori" and all that sort of thing. Frankly, I think this is bollocks, and if INDIVIDUAL people would all realise that guns are bad, the world would be a considerably nicer place. Of course, this only works if everyone agrees, as one bloke with a gun can terrorise a lot of people without a gun. So folks, the brave thing to do is not have one. And that's why I think soldiering is a stupid occupation. Go and get a proper job.

EJ (surprisingly incensed) must be coffee time.


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Ringer
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 12:05 PM

Not much comment on the military aspect, so far. Would you 'list if your country was at war and you were drafted?

Would you be Public Executioner? (If your country applies capital punishment, someone's got to do it.)


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 06:34 PM

Whew!

To return to the original question that started all this...

Yes. I believe at this point I would take a life if someone were to offer me one...as long as it wasn't a life with really miserable conditions attached to it, that is...and there are certainly plenty of those in this world. You gotta be careful about stuff like that. - LH


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: katlaughing
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 06:12 PM

When I was young and my not-then-ex was beating on my dog, I did take up a gun I had and I shot it, over his head to get his attention; screaming hadn't stopped him, but the gunshot did. Because I was afraid he would turn the gun on me, I immediately slammed the door shut and locked it. He was outside and couldn't get in.

I am really glad I didn't shoot him, but I do remember the desperation and rage I felt that I couldn't get his violence to stop. At that time I was hitting dead center at target practice all of the time, so it wasn't a matter of missing him. I gave the dog away the next day. It wasn't too long after that I moved out and got a divorce.

kat


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 06:03 PM

You're making a LOT of sense Ebbie. Were it not for circumstances I'd probably have shot every drunk in a bar who ever asked me to sing "Tie A Yellow Ribbon"!....or anything by Kenny Rogers...or Neil Young......

Rick


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 03:32 PM

Once, in a red-raging, bitter dispute, I wanted to suggest to him that we go outside away from the other people to continue the discussion but I didn't- because I knew that if we were alone, I would pick up a board or anything else to hand. That is definitely a murderous impulse.

If circumstances didn't interfere, there would be a lot more killings!

Ebbie


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 03:23 PM

Jock - I can assure you that I spend a bunch more time practicing creating life than I do practicing to do harm!!! Ya gotta love the freedom this place has - :-}


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Jande
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 03:20 PM

I believe that as long as I didn't have time to *think* about it, I could kill another human being. I have much too much imagination. We are all capable of it, IMO, but for each of us the circumstances precipitating it would be different.

Fo me it would be a towering desperate rage that would do it. And the event that triggered it would not necessarily be a very large thing.

Once, during a time in my life when I was desperate, and dependent on my bicycle for transportation, and had just spent the week's grocery money to get my bicycle tires replaced after someone had slashed them, I went out the next morning to find them slashed again! I was later thankful I didn't have an UZI because I was so full of despair and rage that if I'd had one I would have ran the block's length to the corner of Queen and Bathurst and let loose at everything that moved. At the time, I had to call a counsellor to "talk me down".

It was that proverbial "last straw" feeling. I would also kill if I was trapped.

In a high-school episode once, I almost killed a girl who through a misunderstanding, jumped on me to try and beat me up while I was sitting in the back seat of a convertable. I hardly felt any of her blows, my blood was up so quickly. I just reached up and had her by the throat and started squeezing. She had the bruises from that for weeks. I'm pretty sure I would have killed her if she hadn't wrenched herself free. Strangely enough, before that I thought of myself as a weakling, and that episode gave me more confidence as a whole. It being in self-defense, it was an exhiliarating experience.

I get that rage whenever I see an adult hurting a small child. I've got that reasonable under control now, though. I've learned that it often makes things worse for the child if you interfere with parental brutality or harrassment.

On the other hand, I also believe that every human has within them the capacity for compassion, true remorse, to make restitution/penance, etc. So if I have the chance to think about it the need to anihilate the perpetrator subsides.

~ Jande


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 03:14 PM

NEVER NEVER NEVER. It would be of more use to the world if people put as much thought into CREATING life.

Jock


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: annamill
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 02:34 PM

Sorry about this, but I've been trying to reach this Mudcatter.

NORTON1 -- Please PM me ASAP. You won the Ramblin' Jack Auction and I need your address.

Love, Annamill


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: katlaughing
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 02:31 PM

Rick, wasn't it Crimes and Misdemeanors?

Good story, Spaw. Something happens when you train and work in that environment. I was glad to find out that I stayed that way when emergencies with my kids or family came up. My oldest daughter was only about 3 when she had a grand mal seizure. I went right into EMT mode, cleared her airway, etc. while dilaing for an ambulance. I've since had other occassions to experience the same.

kat


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Subject: RE: Would you take a life?What circumstance?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 02:27 PM

What a moronic question - the instinct to survive is so strong that nearly everyone would kill to stay alive. It's like trying to hold your breath to commit suicide. I've killed in war and in peace and it changes one forever. Not always so pleasantly either. But if you decide to defend yourself, and most of you will when confronted with the situation, you'd better know the law or be prepared to go to prison for it.

I personally don't know anyone who "Loves" guns. I do enjoy them and have a concealed carry - and use it. Outside my home the cops take care of it - inside my home I take care of it.

How's that for a flamer??

Peace Brothers and Sisters :-)


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