Tabby (tabby@psn.net)
Thu, 02 Mar 2000 11:26:32 -0700


>Personal observation: I've heard Americans blame violence in media. However,
>I really believe that some blame should be put on advocating stricter gun
>control policy. Is "the right to bear arms" worth defending for Americans?
>If so, why?

To be blunt, and to risk sounding like a militia member, my father, my
uncles, and myself all see the right to bear arms as part of being able to
abolish the government if it becomes oppressive; the United States was
established by waging war on it's governing bodies, and many people want to
preserve the ability to do that. I don't see a particular need to fight the
government right now, but I consider it important to be able to prepare for
such an event.

That being said, I don't like guns myself. My father was a Naval officer
and took gun safety to heart. First he taught me and my sister how to shoot
his guns, and then he locked them away in an old metal ammo box. To me guns
are loud, and are an amorally detached way of inflicting violence, leading
many people to thing the machine killed the target, not them.

Our family ((does)) advocate gun control, unfortunately in the U.S. it's a
moot point. Gun Control as an american political platform is really a
gradual ban on guns. No one get's elected on issues like trigger locks or
mandatory gun qualification for owners. Politicians running for office grab
whatever gun has been in the crime news and decry it as the latest threat
to public safety.

>I do believe that people make too many inferences that the media is to
>blame. Japan survived with one of the lowest crime rates in the world while
>series about war (like Gundam) were shown on TV. Only recently has an
>upsurge in a new breed of criminal been noticed. Serial killers and sex
>offenders have started popping up there, but the blame has been placed
>squarely on police ineptness - not really blaming violent media like Gundam.
>But I do agree there's a greater sensitivity there now with regards to
>what's shown in the media.

Once again, the media is an easy target. And once again, "control" on
things like violent media leads to omission or banning of questionable
materials (in U.S. politics, "control" is often an euphemism for "ban").
There is a great deal of violence on U.S. television, but much of it is at
best surreal, at worst unreal. Gunfights often involve elaborate manuevers
and dangerous antics, as well as dramatic but not life-threatening gunshot
wounds. Censors allow gunfights dozens or hundreds of rounds litter an
area, but someone dying instantly of a single bullet wound is reserved for
dramatic plots rather than violent one. Children, seeing this, can get a
very skewed view of the real impact of violence, and they tend to be
shielded from the fact that guns will actually ((kill)) people, not just
frighten & hurt them.

"ahem"
The G.I. Joe Rules of Engagement(incomplete)
Machineguns make people duck.
Grenades make people run.
Bullets never hit people, only non-lethal lasers or stun rounds.
No vehicle will explode until the crew are safely clear.
No aircraft will explode until it reaches an altitiude where we can see the
crew safely parachute or jump clear.

>Another Q: How will you guys from the US of A, as Gundam fans react or
>defend Gundam Wing if it does get a backlash from incidents like this?

Frankly, I'll be surprised, especially since "Robotech" has already gained
a reputation as quaint children's cartoon (I work in a used toy store, and
I kid you not). I also have yet to see any signifcant backlash to
Dragonball Z. In fact, parent almost seem to prefer the slightly more
comprehensible DBZ to the big P, despite the former being obviously more
violent than the latter. It think the idea of having censored and
non-censored versions is novel, but I'll wait to see how it's implemented.

tby

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