Prying the gun out of my cold live hands

Old folks are dangerous enough. I should know. I am one. Bad enough you allow me to hurtle down the highway in semi-control of a couple of tons of steel while thinking about science (at least I'm not thinking about decking some young thing or even decking some young thing while hurtling down the highway in semi-control of a couple tons of steel). But put a weapon specially designed for my cold, arthritic hands? (OK, they're not arthritic, but they probably will be soon). This story (hat tip reader emc) is almost too bizarre:

A US company claims to have received federal approval to market a 9-mm handgun as a medical device and hopes the US government will reimburse seniors who buy the $300 firearm. But the US Food and Drug Administration says there are currently no formal designations of the gun as a medical device. Called the Palm Pistol, the weapon is designed for people who have trouble firing a normal handgun due to arthritis and other debilitating conditions.

"It's something that they need to assist them in daily living," says Matthew Carmel, president of Constitution Arms in Maplewood, New Jersey, which hopes to manufacture the Palm Pistol - now just a patent and specifications. (New Scientist)

Yes, that's right. According to the company who wants to make it, they have received FDA approval to classify this thing as a "Daily Activity Assist Device." They want FDA to further classify it as Durable Medical Equipment so Granny can get her heat reimbursed by Medicare or private medical insurance. Sound like hype the company wants to gain publicity (it's working) and possibly venture capital? Yes, it is. Because the FDA denies most of it, saying all they did was registry a facility:

"The FDA doesn't make a determination about a weapon, they make a determination about medical products that are designed to help people and improve their health," says Bill Maisel, Director of the Medical Device Safety Institute at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston.

[snip]

Even if the FDA were to approve the Palm Pistol as a medical device, securing Medicare reimbursement is another issue entirely, says Kevin Schulman, an expert on medical device regulation at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina. "Medicare does not cover everything that FDA approves."

To reimburse a drug, treatment or device, Medicare must determine that it is reasonable and necessary in the course of medical treatment, he says. "The first question for Medicare is whether this would be potentially beneficial, and the answer seems to be obviously no."

Obvious? Well our friends at The Onion have thought about this, too. Typically tasteless and typically on target (sorry):


In The Know: How Can We Make The Iraq War More Handicap Accessible?

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the thing was briefly FDA-listed as a medical device. predictably, the FDA has already reversed itself. i'm privately guessing the listing was more in the way of a PR stunt by the manufacturer than anything else.

that said, i see nothing necessarily ridiculous about allowing people too arthritic or otherwise frail to operate a standard firearm to still defend themselves. i'm a bit concerned that a single-shot weapon in 9mm Luger (and totally lacking sights, at that) might not be much better than swinging a walking cane, though.

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 09 Dec 2008 #permalink

oops, time to backpedal; i note from the manufacturer's web site that it can actually take a laser sight. that's at least some manner of sight, so i was wrong about that. (it is, however, single-shot and extremely short-barreled. that's going to make it comparatively weak and inaccurate, as well as slow to reload.)

however, they're also claiming this is ATF classified as a standard pistol; i'm not a firearms lawyer and refuse to play one on the 'net, but that would somewhat surprise me if true. i would've guessed it counted as an "any other weapon" under the 1934 NFA, which would have put owning one behind a thicket of moderately dense red tape. i could be wrong, though.

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 09 Dec 2008 #permalink

I am sorry Revere, but the inclusion of this kind of stuff with the gun issue is pretty disrespectful of the Vets.

The idea that seniors should be provided a gun in any form is B.S., again the constitution. You have the right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. Not that it will be provided to you. Sometimes you have to fight to preserve it though.

So every elderly person would be packing with dementia? Not a chance. No one in the gun industry or the NRA would be behind the government giving them hand weapons.

On the other hand, home invasions down South are the big thing and they target the elderly and generally the outcome has been that the elderly person leaves in a body bag or on a stretcher. Even the city council members in St. Louis are saying arm yourself because crime is off the scale.

A 9mm NN-Anon is not a weapon for close range> Lugers are notorious for jamming. Elegant looking though. I recommend a 22 two shot magnum derringer. At close range which is the last resort point for an elderly person, a single shot alone would split an attacker clean in half and the pressure wave from the shot would rupture just about every blood vessel in the attackers body.

Of course, that attacker could just go and get a job or a welfare check instead of theft, assault, attempted murder, rape, carjacking. But that would just be me.

By M. Randolph Kruger (not verified) on 09 Dec 2008 #permalink

I recommend a 22 two shot magnum derringer. At close range which is the last resort point for an elderly person, a single shot alone would split an attacker clean in half

when did you get a job with Fabrique Nationale, MRK? if you hadn't said "two-shot derringer" i would've thought you were describing the five-seven...

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 09 Dec 2008 #permalink

Randy: I must disagree. I know those vets well, having worked with them for years at the VA. You might not like it, but there is a bitter truth in The Onion satire. The disrespect is the way we have treated these human beings as cannon fodder and then discarded them like garbage when they were of no more use. This satirizes the idea that maybe it's possible to squeeze the last drop of value out of their wrecked bodies before dumping them. Tasteless, yes. But not as tasteless as the truth.

I realize I can't discuss these issues here. I can't make any points, let alone win any liberal argument here.

But MRK, a 22 Mag cuts someone in half? Not sure on that. A 22 Mag recoil might be a little easier to handle for an elderly person than a larger gun, but for stopping power, a larger caliber would be much more effective than a 22Mag. Although anything is better than nothing...oh..wait..I forgot, I can't win a point on that here.

Patch.

I'm Shocked!!

/:0)

Tell you what. Obtain a 22 mag derringer and first look at the round. Its about three inches long. A normal .22 is only about an inch. Its nearly the same length as a AR-15 .223 round. We know what that can do.

But, for those non believers get yourself a milk or prestone antifreeze jug and fill it with water. Leave the top off else you wont get the pressure wave effect. Stand back about four feet and shoot it dead in the center. Watch it split the thing in half...Remember its made of plastic, you are just made of skin and bone. Cut you in half for those of you who werent in the trade is the statement for being hit a mortal wound. The old small hole going in and huge one coming out is what I reference here. It does pretty well split a prestone jug. If it hits a bone, it will shatter it into hundreds of spinning pieces that finish the job that the pressure wave didnt. I had one when I was in along with a K-bar, and a 9mm. Its that up close and personal stuff that only one person generally walks away from.

Revere-That we disagree is one thing but its not a gun issue. Its part of the possibilities that a military member takes on when he signs on the dotted line. They go before us and always behind us and its for political reasons.They are never used as cannon fodder, that was a different war and the total casualties reflect that. I would NEVER satirize a veteran for any reason... Injured or not.

Hi Tom.

By M. Randolph Kruger (not verified) on 09 Dec 2008 #permalink

nifty mini-revolver, but i still think you'd have to be pretty darn desperate to use any kind of rimfire weapon for self defense. or any single-shot weapon other than a middling to large bore shotgun, for that matter. certainly they can work, but so could a pointy stick; that wouldn't be my choice unless i had nothing better, either.

shooting stuff is fun, and containers full of water do tend to explode most satisfactorily --- whether they be gallon jugs or pumpkins. but that's not a good simulation of what bullets will do to flesh and bone; part of the problem with terminal ballistics is that nothing simulates flesh and bone very well.

ballistic gelatin is a decent try, much better than water, but still not ideal. that bullets behave much differently in gelatin (or in animal carcasses, or game animals) than they do in water is well known; few things more solid, or more compressible, than water will explode like a gallon jug does.

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 09 Dec 2008 #permalink

Oh come on now Patch, it's o.k. We all have felt that way at one time or another. Remember, thick skin?

To me this is a superb idea however, and that's a very long however, after the concealed weapons permit requirements the proposed palm pistol would become non affordable to many seniors. Before you get the permit you have to participate in a gun safety course. That course cost us 60 dollars each. Then another 60 dollars each for the permit process and then 20 dollars each for photos. This alone, in my mind, takes it out of the affordable range.

In addition to the guns senior's need rottweilers that are trained, preferably by a charitible organization. Rottweilers are extremely loyal to their owners.
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Rottweiler

It would provide protection, at least in the home, and if the dog was killed in the process of a home invasion it would give the senior citizen time enough to wake up and get ready with the gun.

After President-elect Obama's "victory" gun sales soared to new heights here in Utah. We're getting two before paper money is worthless, but now that's another story isn't it?

And then there's this:

http://www.suntimes.com/news/politics/obama/1318968,obama-gun-sales-up-…

Obama: Don't stock up on guns
December 8, 2008 - BY ABDON M. PALLASCH Political Reporter

As gun sales shoot up around the country, President-elect Barack Obama said Sunday that gun-owning Americans do not need to rush out and stock up before he is sworn in next month.
"I believe in common-sense gun safety laws, and I believe in the second amendment," Obama said at a news conference. "Lawful gun owners have nothing to fear. I said that throughout the campaign. I haven't indicated anything different during the transition. I think people can take me at my word."

But National Rifle Association spokesman Andrew Arulanandam said it's not Obama's words but his legislative track record that has gun-buyers flocking to the stores.

"Prior to his campaign for president, his record as a state legislator and as a U.S. Senator shows he voted for the most stringent forms of gun control, the most Draconian legislation, gun bans, ammunition bans and even an increase in federal excise taxes up to 500 percent for every gun and firearm sold," Arulanandam said.

.......................

Click on the link if you care to read the rest.

Special guns for the elderly? That'll keep those damned teenagers off their lawns.

By Rogue Epidemiologist (not verified) on 09 Dec 2008 #permalink

If parents and society were teaching teenagers how better to respect their senior citizens then it wouldn't be an issue now would it?

But National Rifle Association spokesman Andrew Arulanandam said it's not Obama's words but his legislative track record that has gun-buyers flocking to the stores.

I've been toying with the idea of setting up an online scorecard compiling all the bizarre predictions about what Obama will do once he gets in office. As each prediction comes true, I can check it off, so that people can measure our nation's progress towards Islamosocialist tyranny.

And if -- by some miracle -- all these hyperventilating conspiracy theorists turned out to be wrong, and few or none of those steps were actually taken...well, I guess that'd be kind of informative, too.

Lea, I do have thick skin and I'm not offended. I just get frustrated. I'm entirely outnumbered and often unsupported and I understand that. The subject matter of this (outstanding) blog seems to draw academia types that are predominantly liberal. I sincerely value the contribution to our society that they make. But while hypothesis and papers are scrutinized and countered through peer review, there are rarely concessions when it comes to liberal political views held by these same people. Gays should marry, period. Guns kill people, period. There is no God, period. There is no middle ground, like working toward an alternative for gays, or realizing that guns have no intent, or that perhaps there is something behind intelligent design.

Drunk drivers kill innocent people. Why don't we ban driving? Or perhaps ban alcohol. Instead we've created much harsher laws to curb drunk driving. We've attempted to force people to take responsibility for their own actions, rather than blaming cars or alcohol.

We have many, many laws for crimes involving guns and in almost every case of a "bad" situation involving a gun, a crime was also committed. We need to enforce existing laws! Not create even more that will ultimately be broken by law breakers and harass law abiding citizens.

OK...I've gone and done it anyway. Stated my quite solitary (I'm sure) stance, which will be pounced upon shortly. I can handle it (thick skin) but it will be frustrating to hear the tribe with no hope for validating a point.

MRK - I'm with Nomen. He makes a good point. Again, anything is better than nothing, but plinking at soup cans or water bottles doesn't mean much. You need to STOP your attacker and that requires stopping power. While a 22 Mag may be effective, it isn't most effective.

Lea said:

"....If parents and society were teaching teenagers how better to respect their senior citizens then it wouldn't be an issue now would it?;;;"

Lea, WELL SAID! I couldn't agree more. Parents have fooled themselves into believing taking their kid to soccer practice is all it takes to be a parent. And I realize this entirely my own assertion and not Lea's, but I'll go a little further, suggesting that Godlessness has further eroded that respect in all areas of life.

Patch: What you've written in the past and present have always been something that I've enjoyed reading. I can't remember but you've probably critized me too. That's o.k.
I may have deserved it and then maybe not.
Point is, please express your opinion and to heck with the hacks. When push comes to shove it just doesn't matter in the bigger scheme of things.

Look, Patch. You're welcome here. But don't complain you are misunderstood or alone, here. The same would be true if I ventured over to a religious blog. What do you expect? Hosannahs? We do science here and we do politics here and we do whatever else we feel like here because we own the front page. It's not a democracy, it's a goddam blog. You are allowed to have opinions, even stupid ones. So am I, except I get to put mine on the front page. If you want to be on a front page, starting your own blog is easy. I recommend it if you want to ruin your life and pour too many hours into something you get no credit for and love having people complain about your opinions just because they are different from theirs. Do I respect your opinions about how other people should lead their private lives? No. I think they are mean spirited and cruel. Am I surprised you like guns? No. It goes together with your God fetish (you know, the God who spreads Lovwith bullets; tough love for sure). Do I think you are totally full of shit. You bet. But you are still welcome here. It's one of my weaknesses.

Well Phila and I agree on one thing and it tangentalizes from there. If any of the Ultra-Left wing stuff comes to pass that he suggested and that could be the gun issue, then you wont have to worry about anything past that. The second they show up to collect all the weapons, there is going to be a civil war. Not a north and south one this time around, it would be between conservatives armed with weapons and liberals armed with newly passed laws that violate the constitution. There arent enough soldiers out there to pull that one off and those soldiers know the Constitution better than most. They also know that the places where they are legally owned would outgun them and outshoot them by I think the number is 300 to 1. I know, they'll just designate us as terrorists and then use the IRS instead.

But I have to say that this even this bum deserves our support as President of the United States. If he pulls something that is incredibly agenda oriented he will lose that support. I would give him the time of day first even as I put up another what an Obama Nation means to you. I can always be wrong. He can too, but he has to convince me and 435 and change members of Congress that what he is proposing is right. Nope, aint getting out of Iraq. Nope, aint going to raise capital gains taxes and a long litany of broken campaign promises. He isnt even appointing ultra lefties to the Cabinet. Those So. Democrats aint stupid and anyone signing on to a gun ban bill would be immediately voted out or worse. We do like our guns and religion down here. But thats the best thing about America, even the founding fathers were packing at all times.

Obama could end up being a really good President if he pulls back to the center rather than what he was elected on-Change. Change could also be bad in a lot of areas. Change in the US has to occur slowly but even now in Tennessee and the places where he didnt coat tail wins there are moves now to rescind at the state level those things that we the population never had a vote or a voice on or in. Most of the state constitutions are the same. Some states just offered up their veins back during the Kennedy years for liberalism and now the suggested socialism. No way that 56% is going to be able to force this issue of weapons on the 44%. Simply not going to happen.

They would have to pry those weapons out of thousands of peoples hands Revere. Passing a law aint going to get it and a national law would simply be ignored.

Nomen-If you were concerned about the size and the stopping power I suggest a spin gun 12 gauge. Has an 8 inch barrel but well its just nasty at close range. But I see you question the stopping power. Just get the 22 and use it on yourself if you have any questions or doubts. Please do run a video so we can make a scientific analysis as to whether you were right or wrong. Its all in the interests of science of course. Extreme, but I am willing to make the bet you would be wrong. If you manage to survive then I think you should go to the spin gun. If you die then we will have our answer and all of us folks with God and religion will buy our grannies with Alzheimers the 22 mags.

By M. Randolph Kruger (not verified) on 09 Dec 2008 #permalink

Revere,

It is your blog. I've readily admitted it's outstanding. You've obviously poured an enourmous portion of your time and talent to it. I believe as it pertains to Bird Flu, it is THE premier discussion site (perhaps second only to fluwiki). You should be proud of the work you've done here with regard to that. It IS your house and I am merely a guest.

But the truth is, in your house, while I enjoy the conversations I over hear, I am essentially an outsider and my opinions (at least on political / social issues) are treated as such. That's your perogative as well as your colleagues and peers. But especially yours, since this IS your front page. And I do have thick skin, as I'm sure you must.

If you venture to a religous blog and thoughtfully try to interact there, you would likely be met with various sentiments. Largely they would treat you as the Bible teaches them to treat you (Love one another as yourself). But there are always a few bad apples...and for those I apologize.

I don't complain about your opinions because they are different then mine. I COME HERE because I look for diversity of opinion. I simply point out (and perhaps argue) alternative opinions. I try to do so while maintaining some level of respect.

Now, with all due respect, after you reread your last post, do you really feel that people like ME are mean spirited and cruel?

Respectfully,
Path

PS - Thank you Lea.

PSS - Off topic perhaps, but when you talk about the elderly, I have a GREAT DEAL of respect for the elderly and truly believe that our greatest generation is leaving us far too quickly. I wish they were here to guide us and set examples for us to follow as we navigate the difficult times ahead.

MRK - I went back and re-read your post. I thought you said the 22 Mag was the weapon of choice, but I see it is just your recommendation. It is a good recommendation.

However, trying it on oneself is not a good recommendation :-)

I recommend it if you want to ruin your life ...

This is sad to hear revere, sad indeed.

When Grandpa was about 90 he started talking about killing himself with a gun. He didn't want to end up in a home with dementia, the way his own father had. He was pretty specific about which gun he was going to use and where he would do it -- at the end of the dock so it would be easier to clean up.

Of course he was already suffering from dementia when he started talking like that. Eventually my uncle put trigger locks in the guns but left them in the case, where Grandpa could see them and be comforted. Finally he lost the key to the case, and couldn't walk down to the dock anyway. But still he would talk about his plan to die with dignity.

We were more worried about his rages (once he was mad at me for letting the kids use the guest bathroom as on that day "Only the priest is allowed to go in there!"), and about the people we hired to care for him. His reading ability deteriorated until he only read Louis L'Amour and the Perry Mason series, but of which convinced him that the world was full of bad people who were out to get him.

He did die at home, in his own bed, after a series of small strokes that we assume led to a big one. He was 93. His doctor was no help, the hospital was no help, the end of his life was the proverbial "long strange trip". The day before his death he was reliving the French and Indian War; the morning of his death he was lucid and thanked me for everything.

I think about his last days whenever I hear the "cling to their guns" phrase. The thought of his guns was one of the few things that gave him the feeling of control. But that does not give anyone the right to exploit the end of life as a marketing opportunity, especially when you are putting the overworked family members at risk.

I recommend a 22 two shot magnum derringer. At close range which is the last resort point for an elderly person, a single shot alone would split an attacker clean in half and the pressure wave from the shot would rupture just about every blood vessel in the attackers body.

Randy, you just used up your BS quota.

I stopped taking you seriously some time ago. Too many clear-cut mistakes of fact, with no mitigation in sight but a simple repetition of the same nonsense in a louder and more stentorian tone.

But this takes the platinum plated prize.

Of all the subjects that a 2nd Amendment conservative, with military experience to boot, ought to get right, it's terminal ballistics. And this howler is one of the most incredible statements I've ever seen in print on this blog.

A USDA-inspected card-carrying latte-sipping tree-hugging Obama-supporting liberal can demonstrably get this closer to right than you just did. LOL.

Mind-boggling.

Try doing a Google search on the following string: "fackler ballistics". A purported gun nut who has never heard of Martin L. Fackler is a sorry specimen indeed.

You can get some historical perspective by perusing some of the links you'll see if you Google search on "hatcher terminal ballistics".

Or just search on "wound ballistics".

Oh, and while I'm on the subject of that "palm pistol".

I've seen what purports to be a drawing of this monstrosity.

Where in the name of sanity are the sights????

Bill Jordan literally "wrote the book" on point shooting more than 35 years ago. He was probably the leading practitioner of unsighted shooting on Planet Earth. And he stated, flatly and in so many words, that shooting a handgun without the use of sights was "postgraduate" shooting. Not to be used by a novice.

Revere, you are too kind to these nitwits. This looks like a "prescription" for killing bystanders, if you ask me.

A 9mm NN-Anon is not a weapon for close range> Lugers are notorious for jamming. Elegant looking though.

Jeeze.

Randy, "9mm pistol" != "Luger P-08".

Not even in the Wehrmacht.

Where in the name of sanity are the sights????

it appears to be meant for use at contact range, as a literal belly gun; push the muzzle into the other guy's belly button before shooting. that said, the manufacturers claim there is to be an optional laser sight.

i'm still concerned that it's just a single-shot, with --- as far as i can tell --- partial disassembly required for reloading.

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 10 Dec 2008 #permalink

You folks are trying to evaluate this thing as a defensive weapon. Is it possible that its real appeal to the elderly is as a suicide device?

What Susan said. This spring, we had to take my father-in-law's gun collection away from him, as he is physically too ill to use any of them safely and his aging wife is too mentally ill to be safe with guns in the house. The only other relatives who live nearby are likely to sell the guns to their wannabe-gangsta friends, or use them to commit crimes, so they're better off locked up safely at my brother-in-law's house and taken out for the annual deer hunting & marksmanship purposes.

Now father-in-law is complaining that there have been break-ins in the neighborhood and he's not safe, he needs his guns back. We pointed out that if he did not feel safe in his home, he was welcome to move in with either of his sons, who live in extremely safe neighborhoods. Plus, in our respective households (BIL's and mine) he wouldn't be left alone all day/night and we both keep big, barking dogs that eat intruders (OK, squirrels) for breakfast. We also offered a range of retirement communities to resolve this "not safe in my home" issue.

He rejected all these options as unacceptable, giving no reason. He only moved into this house a couple of years ago, it's not like it has major sentimental attachments. It became apparent that the issue was not really that he didn't feel safe. It was more like, he felt generally anxious. Further questioning showed that he was having symptoms of dementia--was often disoriented to time and place, didn't recognize friends, and these episodes frightened him terribly. He knew that if he reported these symptoms, or if they were noted by a medical professional, he'd be put in a nursing home, and he feared Hell's foyer the state nursing home (with good reason). So instead we got these lame "I want to stay independent in my house" non-explanations.

Regarding Susan and Lora's point. This particular "device" doesn't exist yet. It's just a patent and not, as far as I know, in response to any overt demand. But the suicide issue is a genuine one concerning guns. One of the reasons that public health types (like us) are anti-gun is not because we are opposed to people defending themselves against criminals (although giving them the death penalty for purse snatching is another matter) but because one of the major consequences of the easy availability of guns is not homicides but suicides. Suicide attempts are often gestures or impulsive. If you try with a bottle of tylenol or sleeping pills you succeed far less often than if you use a gun (where you almost always succeed). This is one reason why there are more suicide deaths among males than females. Females try far more often but succeed far less often because males use guns.

Don't get me wrong. I am not opposed to suicide on general principles. I think there are many times it is rational and I support doctor assisted suicide laws. But too many suicides of young people are impulsive (disappointment in love, etc.) and guns are a big part of that. It doesn't make much sense to me to solve the quandary of older people who don't want to live any more by giving them guns and leaving them on their own. Those guns can also be used against family by a demented individual.

Susan, it's possible, but --- speaking for myself, anyway --- it wouldn't be my first choice for that either. back when i was actively researching suicide methods during my days of frequent suicidal ideation (i got hit with some harsher-than-usual juvenile ennui around puberty) i wouldn't have trusted a pistol-caliber weapon that much. a shotgun seems like it would be just as easy to turn on oneself, and it would certainly be vastly more effective while also being easier to aim in such a situation.

this pistol is basically a push dagger with a barrel instead of a blade; considering how it must be held, it would be physically difficult to aim at one's own body. i suppose one could hold it to one's temple, but that risks merely lobotomizing oneself and surviving. the "canonical" recommendation for suicide by firearm is to aim for the brainstem through the rear roof of the mouth, using a shotgun or similar powerful weapon --- this oddly-shaped handgun would be cumbersome in that position, i think.

(one side-effect of misspending my youth contemplating suicide and never doing it, i ended up capable of pointing out grisly, painful problems with nearly any suicide method you can think of. as a suicide tool, a single-shot middling-caliber pistol has a lot of potentially grisly, painful problems to it.)

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 10 Dec 2008 #permalink

But the suicide issue is a genuine one concerning guns. One of the reasons that public health types (like us) are anti-gun is [...] because one of the major consequences of the easy availability of guns is [...] suicides. Suicide attempts are often gestures or impulsive.

the suicide issue is a genuine one, but blaming it on the tools used is moronic. having once been precisely one of those juvenile suicidals revere and his public-health coconspirators colleagues so like to patronize, talk like this still sets me into a seething rage, well over a decade after i --- how might revere put it, i wonder? --- "went into remission", i suppose. ("learned to live with it" would be closer to my wording. thank goodness i had the sense to avoid professional help; i have since seen what that can do to a person. some of my best friends got violated and damaged that way.)

much like Susan's grandpa, having a tolerably reliable suicide method available helped keep me from attempting suicide way back then. knowing it's there is like knowing you have a safety net; the knowledge that you can check out if the pain (mental or otherwise) ever gets truly unbearable can help you to bear it.

"impulsive gestures", yes indeed. young people make those, in every facet of their lives; part of being young and stupid. they drive that way too, some of them get married and have kids that way --- and some of them kill themselves that way. that's not an anti-gun argument, revere, that's an argument for keeping kids in padded cells until the age of thirty. which might not be a bad idea in theory, but is unlikely to work in practice.

(my safety-net suicide method involved high voltage power i had access to. but there's also this thing you can do with a straight stretch of deserted road, a telephone pole, a fast car, and a hundred feet or so of rope; i bet that would have worked just fine also. not much less impulsive, and a hell of a lot bigger a gesture!)

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 10 Dec 2008 #permalink

NN: We differ on this. Decapitation with a car and rope is not uncommon, but it requires a fair amount of planning and forethought, which is why it isn't as common as guns. Your point seems to be that if someone really wants to kill themselves, that's not a problem and you are right. Nor do I condemn it. It's a choice and I believe in personal autonomy. My problem is that there are too many who don't want to enough (or possibly even at all) to plan it out and do it deliberately but will do it impulsively, just as they will drive drunk thoughtlessly or impulsively or speed impulsively. We try to prevent that by keeping alcohol out of the hands of drivers and young people, and we save lives by delaying the age when people can start driving. In effect we are keeping cars out of their hands. I see nothing inherently wrong with that. You are entitled to your personal reaction and I am entitled to discount it. Your personal experience is not the basis for public pollicy.

To all my point is that now we are talking about a nanny government that would be providing even nanny guns to people that shouldnt even have them in their hands. Susan makes a valid point that after a certain age and the loss of loved ones, most of them think they have nothing left to live for. In their minds, and in some cases not so tightly wound minds they think that suicide is an answer and not home defense. Assisted living facilities would become the Wild West. Guess we wouldnt have to worry about those orderlies abusing the elderly any more?

The idea though that the US government would buy you one as a "medical device" would see husbands and wives capping each other in fits of rage, dementia and of course the suicides. It also would put the USGovt on the hook as suggested that when those little bastards come across the lawn too that they cap their asses on the spot. Hey how 'bout the neighbors dog that barks and pee's on my rose bushes all the time. USGovt. culpability and responsibility would loom large.

Even now the USGovt. has a program that is providing cellphones to people making less than 26000 a year. Those phones are being used here to make drug deals by people in that income level. There is a lawsuit that is starting to get legs that is the result of a shooting that happened from a drug deal on a govt. provided phone. All contracted of course so there is some insulation to the govt, but not much. Point is they have to defend themselves (US) from the lawsuits. Want to bet how long it would take to take these little zip guns to end up in some gang bangers hands?

But back to the elderly. What do they do with these weapons afterwards...Oh thats the weapon that grannie used to cap grandpa and Aunt Louise. Now its an heirloom? I dont think so.

I am a big fan of weapons in the hands of people who know how to use them and only in the proper scenario. I pack legally and mostly because of the area that I have to transit. This is a grade B idea and I dont think it should be a part of Part B Medicare.

As for the rest of it about whether a mag derringer is a good weapon well, you'll just have to take my word for it. Personal preferences and observed results (83-Central America). Nomen, you would be right about the single shot capability. With that at close range you would probably frighten them to death if you missed from the noise it would make.

Revere has this one pretty much on. Even the thought that it was being contemplated means that the law is screwed up that would even allow it. Whats next? Govt provided marijuana and guns to the elderly so they can cope? Hey how about heroin and handguns for the elderly and on and on? Even the Bush Administration cant be this dumb.

300 bucks for a pistol that they get reimbursed for... Jezus.

By M. Randolph Kruger (not verified) on 10 Dec 2008 #permalink

AR-15 against 22 Mag revolver. 4 inch barrel. Kids dont try this at home because you have dumbassed adults to do it for you.

These are the same kind of guys that with a little push could be Tim McVeigh wannabes. Close range operation of a rifle with an object. Dumb...

But, the .22 shows you what would happen pretty much. Anyone who doubts its effectiveness should by all means try it on themselves. Or loan your mildly psychotic granny your pistol and then kick her chihuahua while she is standing there.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ec8hXnjrp20&feature=related

By M. Randolph Kruger (not verified) on 10 Dec 2008 #permalink

hm. maybe i should start extolling the virtues of the sharpened stick as a weapon for all purposes? if anyone should doubt my preference, i could use MRK's logic and invite them to stab themselves in the eye with a sharpened stick, to experience its efficacy...

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 10 Dec 2008 #permalink

Gays should marry, period.

American citizens should have equal rights, period.

If I can get married, my lesbian next-door neighbors should be allowed to get married. We both pay taxes, we both contribute to society, we both obey the law. We should have equal rights, period.

Seems pretty all-American to me.

Patch:Now, with all due respect, after you reread your last post, do you really feel that people like ME are mean spirited and cruel?

I referred to your opinions, not you, and specifically opinions about who should be able to marry whom, have a happy loving relationship and lead their own lives independent of people like you who disapprove although they don't affect you at all. I know you claim they do by virtue of sullying the purity of marriage. That says more about your marriage than anything else. It would be like my saying your views on marriage defile my marriage because you think wrongly about who should be able to marry. Your views -- which are cruel and mean spirited {because they make people who are innocent and whom you don't even know miserable and unhappy) -- don't affect my marriage in the least, which will stand or fall or be pure or not pure (whatever that means) independently of what you believe. Unfortunately that isn't true of your gay fellow human beings. Mean. Cruel. Period. I don't take your prattle about God's love seriously. Who could, given your behavior (by which I mean spreading a hateful view and perhaps materially supporting something that hurts innocent people who have done nothing to you)?

I won't enter the gay marriage debate again. I've said on many occasions I have no disdain for gays, many of which I consider friends. You seem to misinterpret my opposition to gay marriage as a condemnation of gays (and their happiness) and that simply is not true. I'm not sure why being married is absolutely necessary for happiness, but that's another debate entirely.

And as to your last line....Considering MY behavior? If you weren't a God hater, you might realize that I'm an innocent person who's done nothing to you either. And your cynicism (for lack of a better term) of my life and beliefs differs significantly from your view on gays. Yet you are quick to condemn me, while exalting gays. I don't understand that and I'm sorry, but it seems quite hypocritical when based solely on "one" trait of an otherwise innocent person.

I don't want this to become personal, though it appears to be heading in that direction. Rather than exploit your weakness, it's probably best for me to pick and choose what I read and limit comment. I believe you have misjudged me, but that's OK.

Respectfully,
Patch

I've said on many occasions I have no disdain for gays, many of which I consider friends.

friends don't ban friends from marrying without some damn good reason. sexual orientation is not a damn good reason; it's an excuse to hide your disdain behind.

(actually, i'd be more likely to say "hatred" rather than "disdain". it's clear, however, that you're not ready to face that side of yourself just yet.)

I'm not sure why being married is absolutely necessary for happiness

oy, way to remind me of the silly gun control "debate" --- "prove to me that you NEED this, or i won't let you have it!". that's no way for adults to have to live. you prove to me that i must not be allowed to have it, otherwise i should be free to either have it or not, as i choose.

By Nomen Nescio (not verified) on 11 Dec 2008 #permalink

"decking some young thing"? C'mon.

Ya know what S, when you come here to comment at least give the person's name to whom you are referring. It would be wonderful if we all could remember what each and every person has said. Let alone running through all the comments. But no, you want to come here, for the first time?, and frakking put a bull shit comment in? Get a life.

To all my point is that now we are talking about a nanny government that would be providing even nanny guns to people that shouldnt even have them in their hands. Susan makes a valid point that after a certain age and the loss of loved ones, most of them think they have nothing left to live for. In their minds, and in some cases not so tightly wound minds they think that suicide is an answer and not home defense. Assisted living facilities would become the Wild West. Guess we wouldnt have to worry about those orderlies abusing the elderly any more?

The idea though that the US government would buy you one as a "medical device" would see husbands and wives capping each other in fits of rage, dementia and of course the suicides. It also would put the USGovt on the hook as suggested that when those little bastards come across the lawn too that they cap their asses on the spot. Hey how 'bout the neighbors dog that barks and pee's on my rose bushes all the time. USGovt. culpability and responsibility would loom large.

Even now the USGovt. has a program that is providing cellphones to people making less than 26000 a year. Those phones are being used here to make drug deals by people in that income level. There is a lawsuit that is starting to get legs that is the result of a shooting that happened from a drug deal on a govt. provided phone. All contracted of course so there is some insulation to the govt, but not much. Point is they have to defend themselves (US) from the lawsuits. Want to bet how long it would take to take these little zip guns to end up in some gang bangers hands?

But back to the elderly. What do they do with these weapons afterwards...Oh thats the weapon that grannie used to cap grandpa and Aunt Louise. Now its an heirloom? I dont think so.

I am a big fan of weapons in the hands of people who know how to use them and only in the proper scenario. I pack legally and mostly because of the area that I have to transit. This is a grade B idea and I dont think it should be a part of Part B Medicare.

As for the rest of it about whether a mag derringer is a good weapon well, you'll just have to take my word for it. Personal preferences and observed results (83-Central America). Nomen, you would be right about the single shot capability. With that at close range you would probably frighten them to death if you missed from the noise it would make.

Revere has this one pretty much on. Even the thought that it was being contemplated means that the law is screwed up that would even allow it. Whats next? Govt provided marijuana and guns to the elderly so they can cope? Hey how about heroin and handguns for the elderly and on and on? Even the Bush Administration cant be this dumb.

300 bucks for a pistol that they get reimbursed for... Jezus.

By M. Randolph Kruger (not verified) on 10 Dec 2008 #permalink