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DoNotKnowMuch's avatar

What are your thoughts on the Democrats' proposal to tie gun sales to the government's terrorist watch list?

Asked by DoNotKnowMuch (2974points) June 16th, 2016

Why the sudden enthusiasm for the “terrorist watch list”? If the watch list has inherent flaws, why are we comfortable using it to target people in stripping away their constitutional right? Would this have stopped Dylann Roof or Adam Lanza?


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22 Answers

Lightlyseared's avatar

so people have a constitutional right to buy weapons to wage war on American citizens? Might be time to review the constitution.

DoNotKnowMuch's avatar

@Lightlyseared: “Might be time to review the constitution.”

This is a legitimate – but separate – issue. I’m specifically asking about the government’s “terrorist watch list”.

If the Democrats are intent on revising the constitution, they could certainly try to do it. But they’re not.

Lightlyseared's avatar

Yes there are problems with the terrorist watch list but I don’t think the idea of restricting sales of weapons to people you suspect are terrorists is a bad idea. Not that it would make the slightest bit of difference as they’d just pop round to their local gun show and pick up whatever they like no questions asked.

stanleybmanly's avatar

The proposal is just so much useless rhetoric. The stupidity of the gun situation as well as the arguments around it are just dazzling to behold. Any gun law or restriction imagined is pointless and has about as good a chance of retarding gun violence as narcotics laws do of reducing the meth epidemic. Both are for all practical considerations beyond control for the same reason, the all but limitless availability of the product involved. We might as well just face it & die.

stanleybmanly's avatar

As with most of the problems in the country that illustrate our collective race to dumb down and embrace blatant stupidity, it comes down to logic failure at the individual level. For the truth of the gun debacle is that it boils down to tens of millions of deluded fools each of whom believes themselves prepared to shoot their way out of the problem.

Zaku's avatar

Political sideshow to distract from their attempt to ram Clinton down our throats.

Also, the terrorist watch list is a part of the disingenuous War On Terror, part of the (people behind the) GW Bush administration’s Orwellian “defend our freedom by taking it away” campaign to keep people scared, create a security “industry”, grab more power away from people, etc.

“Would this have stopped Dylann Roof or Adam Lanza?” Of course not. How could it have?

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

Another example of there being no perfect system on this planet, laws such as this is operated by people who often allow emotions to supersede basic logic. In the case of the 7 month old child being on a terrorist watch list has to take the cake of gonzo logic, to pure lunacy. Like the people hemmed up in Gitmo all those years, the damage the government can do is usually harder to undo then the immediate damage they do. Since they (the government) is the path to any relief, if they do not have any recourse in place (and I suspect by design), you are basically in the same boat as if you were under Pinochet, just in a different way. Uncle Sam would like to believe he is better, to much better than the garden variety dictators he has railed against for years, but under the hood the engine is pretty much the same.

If you can control the guns, eventually you will be at a point where if you wanted to impose martial law, there will be no one with the capacity to resist.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

The Gov’t can and will keep lists. Those lists should never strip Americans of due process. We could live to regret the day we ever let that one slip through.

DoNotKnowMuch's avatar

I’m curious if there are any Democrats that support this. This seems to be the pattern – Democrats do things that would get them crucified if they were Republicans, everyone is silent (or makes excuses).

Anyway, in this case, it doesn’t seem to make any sense. If this list were comprised of people who have committed crimes, they should be prosecuted. If they haven’t, then how can we restrict their rights? Apparently, people on this list have had very little problems getting guns. Is there any evidence that these people have committed violent crimes at significantly higher rates with the guns?

stanleybmanly's avatar

Forget about the feasibility of whether or not this or that plan will bear fruit, or whether this or that proposal will bring down the level of horrific shootings. Forget about the constitutional issues. None of it matters, because with any list you care to draw up, ANYONE on it can get a gun. It’s damned near as simple as taking a breath. Who here can deny it? Name one surviving perpetrator of any of these crimes who professed the slightest inconvenience or delay in their plans due to difficulties around acquiring combat grade weaponry?

Seek's avatar

Any law to that effect would and should rightly be stricken as unconstitutional re: due process.

I am not a Democrat.

Seek's avatar

@stanleybmanly – I have reviewed the data on mass gun murder in the US since 1982, and the screaming majority of guns were either purchased legally or stolen from a close family member who had purchased them legally.

stanleybmanly's avatar

That’s actually a relief for me. Lately I’ve been asking around, and I was actually rather shocked at how many of my contemporaries here in San Francisco have unregistered weapons in their homes and even their vehicles.

johnpowell's avatar

So have we totes accepted that Orlando, Sandy Hook, Charleston, Columbine are the new normal?

You brave motherfuckers think the solution is victim blaming like “why didn’t you pussies just attack the shooter?... There were 300 of you.”

Here is a fucking hint… There are massive pussies out there. Look in the mirror to find one.

DoNotKnowMuch's avatar

^ I think you may have accidentally posted this in the wrong thread.

johnpowell's avatar

I didn’t.. I had to click the Answer button seven times for it to actually go through.

DoNotKnowMuch's avatar

@johnpowell: “I didn’t.”

Are you sure? It’s not relevant to the question (or responses).

Seek's avatar


I see where you’re coming from. Believe me, I want few things more than to make firearms go away. However, I’m not about to start supporting further degrading of our rights of due process.

I would support all sorts of restrictions on guns, but they would have to apply to all Americans, not just those with scary-sounding names.

ucme's avatar

Guns don’t kill people, uh-huh, dicks kill people, with guns
Equation, more dicks in eeh-merry-ka than guns, frightening but true

Cruiser's avatar

My thoughts are that anyone especially elected officials who are clamoring for an assault style weapons sale ban for anyone on this so called Terror Watch List are displaying their ignorance over the complexity of this matter. I find it borderline insane that the first collective reaction to Orlando is to ban assault style rifles. The true problem lies within these watch lists we already have. As they are they just don’t work. It comes down to a glaring need to have the 3–5 separate Federal agencies that supply information to create this so called watch list to work more effectively. Just look at 9/11. the Boston Bombing, San Bernardino, Orlando only to name the biggies here in America….in all 4 situationsm the FBI, NSA had these guys on their radar! Orlando is the most egregious of the bunch as days before the rampage a gun store owner called the FBI to tell them a very suspicious Arab looking gentleman was insisting on buying body armor! I have not had the time to research as to what excuses the FBI is offering as to why they did not have agents immediately all over this guy.

As far as assault style weapons I agree it is way too easy to get them and should be a very difficult vetted process with long waiting periods if that at all. A big part of the problem is a lot of good innocent American Citizens wind up on these lists simply because their name matches a suspected terrorist and it now becomes a restriction of that persons right to go purchase a gun which we simply cannot do just because of a couple of recent events that could have been stopped had the powers that be did their job.

But restricted access to the purchase of an assault weapon would not have stopped 9/11 or the Boston Bombing. If we are going to ban assault guns then we should also ban box cutters and Boeing 767’s, and Cuisinart pressure cookers. You can ban all of those and guess what is next….more suicide bombings, IED’s and dirty bombs. These Islamic extremists are prepared to do anything under their power to wreck havoc with or without assault rifles.

DoNotKnowMuch's avatar

I suppose this question is still relevant in light of the Democrats’ “sit-in”. Very disappointing. And that means you too, Bernie.

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