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post #249 of (permalink) Old 12-15-2012, 11:21 AM
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Been a long time reader of this forum, but a first time poster. I really hate to have my first post be in the politics section, but since my snowboarding plans were cancelled this weekend, I can't exactly ask people if they want to car pool to Mt. St Louis Moonstone (Ontario).

Anyway, when discussing the state of gun control in the US, I strongly believe that you need to examine the two extremes. On one extreme, you have a mass ban where no average citizen is allowed to carry or own a firearm. On the other extreme, all citizens are given the right to own a firearm and are encouraged to do so. Fortunately, there are two countries in this world that fall into both of the extremes.

One of them is Japan - and it is commonly known to be one of the safest countries in the world. There is hardly any violent crime (person-to-person) over there. In Japan, they have strict weapon control (not just guns). It prohibits any citizen from owning a sword or a gun unless you have a special reason to do so (sporting etc.).

The other country is Switzerland. Over there, it actually required that you own a weapon if you're male adult. And it goes without saying that Switzerland, just like Japan, is one of the safest places on Earth.

When looking at Japan and Switzerland, it raises the question of whether gun control is even the relevant factor in preventing gun crime. And in my humble opinion, gun control is indeed relevant, but I do not think gun control alone is sufficient in preventing gun crime.

So what makes USA different from Switzerland and Japan? Well, I'll list down a few points:

- Smaller populations; however, Japan is extremely densely populated when you consider its land mass.
- "Socialist" systems in place (health care, schooling, etc.)
- Social gradient is smaller. Meaning the gap between the rich and the poor is smaller
- Switzerland is a very militaristic state. Meaning that their youth have mandatory service and every citizen is required to have training with guns.
- Japan places a heavy emphasis on education. Students are pressured into being academically successful. You are looked down upon if you do not do well in school.

To me, I really think that reducing the social gradient, reducing poverty are some of the key things in preventing gun crime. If I had more energy, I'd actually link studies as to why a society that has a smaller gap between the rich and the poor tends to be safer and more prosperous than a country that does.

Secondly, if the USA is to allow every citizen to own a gun. Then it is also necessary that EVERYONE goes through training and how to use a gun properly (just like Switzerland).

Thanks for reading. I know it's not much at the moment, and I'll add more later. But I just want to point out that both systems can work, but gun control ALONE is not the solution to preventing gun crime. The government has to touch on other things in order to make things safer.
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