A Dallas man who accidently shot himself in the head while "showing off his pistol to friends" at a party last Saturday looks certain to make the 2008 Darwin Awards nominations. According to the Dallas Morning News Andreous Robinson, 20, had been partying with chums in West Dallas when he decided to pop outside at around 1am and …
"Maybe if more of your populace was well armed, they could scare off some of your criminals."
Oh, yeah, the simplistic moronic "logic" rears its ugly head, as expected.
By your "reasoning", the USA must be really safe and peaceful then, eh? Oh, sure you think it has not enough guns, that's why it's not safer... Japan must be hell then, I suppose.
Yep, ignore the complex cause of the problems (whatever they are) and just get guns and it will be alright.
Guns are not the real problem. Mentally ill societies with guns are the problem.
I'm a Brit
But definitely with the Americans on this one.. this poor dude might deservedly be up for a Darwin award - but if Joe Public over here were allowed to defend him/herself against our own (myriad) Darwinian candidates - I'm thinking mainly here about the ones that wear hoodies and say "innit" a lot - it would probably be one helluva better place to live.
As for the highly offensive remarks about the cousins from the few ignoramuses on here - I'll apologise on your behalf, Gentlemen, so you don't have to lift your knuckles off the floor or get up...
re: The only thing more dangerous than a loaded gun...
"Near as I can figure, around a quarter million Americans with guns died saving your butts from Adolf."
You don't figure much, that's why we Americans look so stupid. It was the Red Army that defeated Nazi Germany, not the US. Go read a real history book.
A Fellow American.
Darwin Award? Hardly.
I have no idea why The Reg picked this as a ha-ha funny Darwin Award nominee. Stupid gun accidents happen all the time. This isn't exactly like strapping a jet pack to a car and flying into a mountain or something.
Perhaps the author was trying to Prove A Point. Indeed, he ended up proving a point different from the point he was trying to prove.
A person from my high school did this a few years back. He never used the weapon, and never chambered a round, but someone else had before him and didn't clear it, and now he's dead. It really is an exceptionally stupid way to die, but it is still a death and he was someone's son, friend, brother, its still sad.
All you sit here on your high horse like you've never done anything stupid and just happened to live. I can think of a lot of times where I probably should have died, and when my story was told, people would say "That is really dumb, why would you do that?" Hell thats a good question for us all, but the fact remains that I'm lucky and am here, and so are you.
Admit to yourselves you've done stupid things and probably should be dead, and we'll be good. Just get off your high horse for a minute and hang with the peons, you'll see it.
Given that more than 20 times as many Russian military (over 10 million) than yanks (417 000) died saving our butts from Adolf, and nearly the equivalent number of Brits (383 000) as Americans died, why don't you stfu with your whinging about how the US "saved" the world.
Big shout to the GLC!
"Guns don't kill people rappers do!
Sound of the police.
Woo Woo Woo!"
"They read his mind. On the wall near where he was standing."
They said he was a very broad minded person.
The Police are keeping an open mind....
Yes, I have a sick sense of humour.
The chap does not deserve to be sniggered at, or to die for that matter, because he was momentarily stupid while drunk. Many many people are dead because they forgot to look one time when they stepped into a road. Are they stupid ? Sorry for my sense of humour failure here, but I take issue with the name of Darwin (who, by all accounts, was a really top bloke as well as a great scientist) being applied to this sneering and unfunny enterprise.
Oh and while I agree that America pays dearly for its rather mad gun laws, you can shove your received anti-americanism up your jacksee.
@AC you have forgotten who supplied all the technology for the bombs that dropped on Japan in 1945 thus saving 6 million US butts ( worst case estimated casualties in the first month of fighting on mainland Japan ) or eventually the Jet and rocket technology in use today in Amerika the land of the self induced paranoid !
As always irrespective of country when playing with weapons of any description "Stupid is as stupid does !"
Just some points
'but didn't we prove that sometime around the 1700's'
Err, no you didn't. Started in 1775, by 1778 you were losing quite badly and had to get the French to bail you out. The French being too cowardly to attack us on their own were quite happy when it was 2 armies against 1.
RE 'around a quarter million Americans with guns died saving your butts from Adolf'
How many millions of Europeans died while you sat back and did nothing? You only started fighting when you didn't have a choice any longer, and even back then no-one wanted you fighting alongside them because of far too many incidences of friendly fire because of your gung-ho attitude and an inability to shoot straight. True story as told to me by more than 1 war veteran.
RE: 'America has over 300M people, and over 1Bn weapons of various types. Per capita, there's enough guns in the US for everyone to have three. Statistically speaking, our gun death rate is really quite low, considering the amount of armed citizens in the populace.'
Have you looked at Switzerland? A country of 7.5 million that is estimated to have more guns than people. It's only an estimate as guns are so ingrained in their culture, they are not all registered and it is impossible to know the correct figure. Total number of gun deaths? so low that official statistics are not kept because they know how to use them and be responsible.
As for the idiot who thinks London would be safer if he was allowed to carry a gun. America tried that and look what happens. The criminals just carry bigger weapons and more of them. People pull them out over petty squabbles that at one time might have been sorted by walking away or a fist fight. If you carry a gun, the temptation is always there to use it and it's always easier to give into temptation. You think things are bad now? It could be so much worse.
You overestimate international common sense. If idiot Brits had legal access to guns, this would happen to the same degree in this country too. Not that it would be a bad thing.
Did he say ? ? ?
Did he say "hold my beer and watch this" first?
Also, with firearms available to the civilian population, wouldn't that mean the stupid people would kill themselves more frequently in the US than over here in Europe? And wouldn't that mean they'll outsmart us in a couple of hundreds of thousands of years (which is really rathter quick on the evolutionary scale)?
Just a few thoughts.
How did Canada get dragged into this?
"embarrassed about their own country's lack of accomplishment. We see it all the time here in Canada."
Hold the show their anonymous buddy. Canada suffers from some shortcomings (name a country that doesn't) but lack of accomplishment is not one of them. I suggest you read a history book, watch the CBC, or even stoop to using wikipedia. Start with http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Vimy_Ridge.
Empty Gun Theory
Without knowing the guy, I can't say if this a sad story or not. I agree with a previous poster though, that at least he did the right thing in testing his 'empty gun theory' on himself and not someone else.
My granny could read tea leaves. I expect brain splatter would have been easy enough.
"well I suppose a nation that voted for Bush TWICE has it's fair share of loonies..."
Er, we did not vote for Bush the first time. Remember? If the U.S. was a democracy, he would never have entered office. (And, quite possibly, we did not vote for him the second time either.)
P.S. I would never trust with a gun anyone who doesn't know the difference between it's and its, which sadly means you.
In the city that my Mother lives in, Kennesaw, GA, it is mandatory for every house hold head to own a fire arm complete with ammunition. After this law was introduced breaking and entering dropped about 89%.
People supporting gun restriction will sight that the same result occurred when The Village of Morton Grove, IL made it illegal to possess or transport hand guns. This was only hand guns though so rifles and shotguns still remain.
Ridding citizens of their guns is not the solution in reducing crime. People seem to love the thought that if you change a single factor in a complicated senario composed of multiple factors then you will end up with the desired result. Everyone really knows it's the video games that are increasing dangerous and violent behavior in the world. Look at what Doom2 did to those poor Trench coat Mafia boys in Colorado.
If you really give a rat's ass about what happened to the numb nuts in the story then mandatory gun safety classes in school is the answer to prevent accidental shootings. I'm not sure that, considering how few accidental shootings there are in the U.S., it would be worth the tax payers' money in establishing such an expensive program.
re: Just some points
>"RE 'around a quarter million Americans with guns died saving your butts from Adolf"
"How many millions of Europeans died while you sat back and did nothing?"
The same number as when Europeans sat back and did nothing.
You never did get "Peace in our time", did you?
Half the anti-American snivel is because we won't mind our own business and keep interfering in other countries affairs. Y'all proved that if we don't mind your business your problems (invariably self-inflicted) tend to become our problems whether or not we want them.
"You only started fighting when you didn't have a choice any longer..."
Sure we had a choice. We could have stopped using our ships to send you the materials that were keeping y'all from starving and then the German U-boats wouldn't have been sinking them within sight of our beaches.
'course, if we'd have done that then we wouldn't be having this conversation... at least not in English....
" ...and even back then no-one wanted you fighting alongside them because of far too many incidences of friendly fire because of your gung-ho attitude and an inability to shoot straight. True story as told to me by more than 1 war veteran."
Not to worry, it won't happen again.
At least us Yanks will be able to rise up and defend our selfs when big brother demands we be bar coded, chipped, RIFID. Can you Brits say the same :) have fun with the national ID thing
Get off your soap box .... err soap bar... :)
Chip off the ol' block.....
Dickheads like this should use rubbers ... well, rubber bullets anyway - not that it woulda mattered close range...
" The only thing more dangerous than a loaded gun... An American with a gun."
is a dumb TEXAN with a gun...
/ er... mine's the suit of armor
Late Night Larry
Brit in SoCal
I feel safer with a shotgun in the house AND the legal right to shot anyone that breaks in. When I get time I will take a gun course but in the meantime I have figured out from watching movies, the end with the hole points away from you.
Didn't Margaret Thatcher, to obtain the overrides for the French made Exocet missiles, once threaten Francois Mitterrand with nuking Buenos Aires in a heroic defense of the Falkland Islands?
All nations occasion have a whacko or supervillian as their leaders. Checks and balances, people.
must comment - can not resist - must control
No, I failed. I just have to shed some light in the capabilities of other cultures also. I was "conducting" (or what ever) shoot while in the military when all of a sudden a private while lying on his stomach starte swatting a fly with his loaded assault rifle.
He was actually amazed that why I was so mad at him.
I'm finnish and proud of it. By the way, I think that theres almost as many guns here than in the States. And I'm also afraid that they might just as well be used as badly, if not even worse.
I have no idea of icons. So I'll just pick a pretty one.
The problems of Americans with guns
"An insurgency, or insurrection, is an armed uprising, or revolt against an established civil or political authority. Persons engaging in insurgency are called insurgents, and typically engage in regular or guerrilla combat against the armed forces of the established regime, or conduct sabotage and harassment in the land in order to undermine the government's position as leader."
"Historians have estimated that about 40% of the (American) population were Loyalists (that is, about 900,000), but because their existence has been all but ignored since, there are no exact numbers"
I guess the main trouble that USAians have with the whole "right to keep and bear arms" thing at the moment, is that they selectively recall their own history. In the mid 1770s a relatively small majority (The 40%) of the population of the 13 colonies were insurgents. You also have the experience of your inability to beat a relatively poorly armed guerrilla army in Vietnam. Why do you think that you can control Iraq when you know that regular armies can not win against a determined population that has a lot of weapons of its own?
However, I agree that you probably do need guns to protect you against your own government...
go team america
i seriously lol at the few americans who have commented here (their grasp of history is also highly entertaining) - half my family is (unfortunately) american and unsuprisingly they are all thick as sh!t - be it locale, be it education, be it the right to bear arms (loool you go ahead and 'rise up and defend' yourselves - here you go heres some guns!), be it genes (dear god) - america is the worlds dunce, get over it and elect someone who either cares about education or has plans for an organised cull.
the latter is my personal preference.
Anonymous Coward writes: "Have you looked at Switzerland? [...] Total number of gun deaths? so low that official statistics are not kept because they know how to use them and be responsible."
Up to a point, Lord Copper. See, for example, http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/0,1518,480545,00.html The Schnibbles are worried enough about their citizens shooting each other that they have recently banned the keeping of military ammunition at home.
It's amazing, really. One incident. One poor (possibly drunk) young half-wit with a gun manages to terminate his exisistance with an act of stupidity and before long we're all dragging up the national stereotypes and historical animosities (going all the way back to the American War of Independance, some people know how to hold a grudge!).
People with Guns DO NOT make the world a better place. Not now. Not then. Not in the future. Not here, there, or anywhere.
We need to deal with our inability to control our anger, and our total intolerance of any other opinion than our own, which are the biggest problems I think we face. I've just heard about a forty something father who has been killed over some (stupid) argument about a FOOTBALL. A FOOTBALL!! Reality check required all round.
Has he reproduced yet....
...or was he only shooting blanks?
HA HA .. Another Dumb ass-hole bites the dust. It doesnt matter what country you are from I bet you are no more than 100 yards away from someone just as dumb. Its not an American thing, its a dumb people thing :-)
Don't mention the war.
Oh come on, in Britain our drunken idiots manage to kill themselves without guns all the time. Every country is going to have its share of idiots, Its just that America makes it easier for them to kill themselves.
Right, Who mentioned the war? I would not do anything to disparage the brave people of all the countries that fought in the second world war (on both sides). However I'd like to point out that there were many occasions between September 1st 1938 and December 7th 1941 when Brittain and the Allies could easily have lost, but in fact held there own without US help, the Battle of Britain being only the most famous. The US didn't join in until they were sure we could win.
PS I'd like to say to Alex Timchula that yours is the only sensible post on here.
culture not guns
I believe that till recently the Swiss were as well armed as the Americans - every male was in the army and kept a gun at home. However, gun crime and killings were and are not a feature of Swiss life. It's a cultural thing - the same reason perhaps that the Europeans can hold their drink while the Brits make tosspots of themselves.
It's not that something is available, its the culture and type of person who avails themselves of it.
Happens all the time ... not only in the US.
I recall clearly watching the official ceremony for a police officer that died that stupid way, cleaning his weapon, removing the loader, forgetting it has a chamber with a bullet in it, and actionning the trigger while pointing to him. Was in France, by the way, 25 years ago.
I was 14 or something and never had put my hand on any fire weapon, but clearly thought it was a really darn good thing for everyone's security that such a moron, autorised to bear a weapon, shot himself. Never understood why on earth they did such a ceremony though with the prefet and all, speaking of "duty" and so on.
Probably here lie the roots of my passion for sarcasm :-)
And yes, unfortunately, the density of morons being the same in every country, having >2 fire weapons per inhabitant will make the US beat anyone else at that game. Pity, as someone said, from a logistics point of view, noone will ever succeed to remove all those weapons, unless they leave it rust for one century ... After forbidding by law to sell them.
Texas, Is another country...
"Texas: It's like a whole other country!" Is it, really? Or is it really an entirely different country? All except for Austin..... it belongs in a better state.
Remember the Bush family is Texan.... nuff said.....
I believe it was Kipling who said...
If you can keep your head when that drunk bloke with the handgun is losing theirs and blaming it on booze...
To think he was a poet as well as a maker of exceedingly good cakes. Kipling, that is, not the Darwin award nominee.
Mine's the one made out of Kevlar, thanks.
Wow Lester Haines triggers yet another xenophobe/nationalism flame war! I think he does it on purpose for kicks. ;-)
...and all you sheep played into it.
BTW @Andy Bright -
<QUOTE>And I think while this will possibly get an honourable mention from the Darwin Awards, usually you have to do something significantly more stupid than merely fail to keep track of the number of shots you fired...</QUOTE>
He DID do something more significantly stupid, he pointed it at his bloody head!! He then pulled the trigger!!! Jeez is that not stupid enough? Just refer to Jonathan McCullochs quote -
"there is NO such thing as an unloaded gun"
And whilst he may have been suicidal, these sorts dont generally hold suicidal dinner meetings.
Just for this whole ugly events very simplicity, he should be awarded 'all time' Darwin winner award!
P.S. Anybody thought about how distraught his dinner guests must have been after seeing his brains splattered all over the room? Ironic that he may very well have contributed towards gun safety as a direct result of that!
Rants, guns and opinions
On the article - Good, one more wingnut incapable of a basic grasp of self preservation is out of the gene pool. Harsh but true.
On the Yank bashing by the Brits -
a) We're hardly a sterling example of common sense either - re guy murdered over football, any A&E Dept on a Saturday night, our Police force's penchant for murdering people "just in case".
b) Not all yanks are the stereotypical braindead rednecks. Just many of the ones that make the news.
c) Not all yanks are gun toting psychos.
On Brit bashing by the Yanks -
a) Excuse me, but you only got involved once Japan made a preemptive strike. Japan... not Europe or any European entity. Your support also came at a huge price that we only recently finished paying off. i don't see you paying us for the wars in the Middle East.
b) You do have a nasty tendency to not pay quite as much attention to the world around you as you might. I drive in the US quiet often and the lack of common sense on the road scares me.
c) You do have a very, very poor rep for dropping bombs on yours or your allies troops. Old saying from WW2 was that "When the British bombed, the Germans ran, when the Germans bombed the British ran. When the Americans bombed, everyone ran" .
Folks, every nation has its own share of wingnuts, maniacs and raving yahoos - some more newsworthy than others. It's not an indictment of the nation in question, merely of the Human Race.
Besides, I'm all for everyone having as many guns as they want. Only I get the ammo as well though.
Speaking as a US gun owner...
Let us not judge an entire country on the actions of one moron. Gun politics aside, any responsible gun owner would never handle a gun under the influence of alcohol. Any person who has taken a gun safety course is taught to assume 1) The gun is always loaded, 2) The safety does not work, and 3) Never point a gun at anything you do not intend to destroy. Violating these three principles while under the influence of alcohol is an act of supreme stupidity or gross ignorance.
The Prophet Heinlien
"I must disagree with the idea that his behaviour deserved death."
@Anonymous coward Darwin
"The chap does not deserve to be sniggered at, or to die for that matter,"
Robert Heinlein had it right:
"Stupidity cannot be cured with money, or through education, or by legislation. Stupidity is not a sin, the victim can't help being stupid. But stupidity is the only universal capital crime; the sentence is death, there is no appeal, and execution is carried out automatically and without pity."
And who's to blame
> To the outside world, (well from the UK,) the US gun laws seem crazy!
The American take on guns comes from a time when they were fighting a war of freedom from oppression against a vastly superior military force; better trained and equipped.
The only option was to give every person the right to bear arms - thus transforming every farmer and smallholder into an instant militiaman and providing a large enough military force to defeat their imperialist overlords.
That was the War of Independance.
Try looking at the law in a historical context and it makes perfect sense - just like it's legal to (use a bow and arrow to) shoot a Scotsman in York. The only difference is that the US has a defined constitution which gives certain rights to it's citizens which can be amended but never revoked.
And yes, I'm English and no, I don't *love* America, the country scares the living shit out of me these days.
Why we "Yank Bash"
It's not just the UK who bash the Yanks - it's the entire world. Your global reputation is at an all time low for numerous reasons - global warming / Kyoto, choice of president, war on "terror" to name but three.
Stop pretending to be "Defenders of The Earth" and throwing darts at a map of the Middle East and wondering who to invade next before finishing the jobs / mess you created in other countries (Afghanistan, Iraq.....)
Swiss weapons and America in WW2
Not a lot to do with the original, sad cause of this thread (even the brightest of us can do remarkably stupid things to win approval, show off and/or when drunk), however:
1. Switzerland (I live there) has not abandoned keeping service weapons at home. It is under discussion, with one pressure group trying to get this done voluntarily by individuals. Interestingly, as far as I can tell from the news reports, most gun crime seems to involve smuggled weapons from Eastern Europe in a particular (non-Swiss) part of the population. Not unlike UK actually.
2. USA: is this the same country that had such a strong groundswell of support for Nazi Germany that Roosevelt had to be very circumspect until Pearl Harbour? The one whose oil industry (e.g. Cheney's father) was keeping Germany supplied with fuel, even, it is said, into 1944? The one where Joseph Kennedy, as US ämbassador to UK, had to be recalled because he was betraying information to Germany? The land whose generosity to UK was so great that UK finished repaying the financial debt just last year? Thank heavens the UK government from 1939 to late 1943 had the guts to keep going alone and for those such as NZ, Canada, Australia, S. Africa, India. Especially, once they changed sides, thanks for the sheer guts and stubborness of the former Soviet Union army.
Shame. I have good friends from USA and appreciate its good side. I just regret its massive defects and awful influence in all areas. Sadly, whatever the merits of its people, their general+ level of knowledge and education, even within their own borders, makes even the dimmest European look positively educated (as opposed to trained).
And if the militia weapon locker is controlled (which it would have to be, to be any sort of improvement), who has the keys?
There would be a whole organization setup to manage & monitor the control & co-ordination. Which in turn means it's almost definitely going to end up under governmental control.
"Mr government-apointed-key-holder. I think this government is unjust, please give me a gun so I can argue the point".
Doesn't really work, does it?
One of the prices of being able to defend yourself is that you have the ability to hurt yourself and others. It's (as a lot of people have stated) not a simple issue, very little that involves humanity is, but getting the guns into centrally managed facilities removes the advantages as much as the disadvantages.
switzerland (i live there too) has very strict laws on the military weapons held by its men. every year, the case of ammo and the weapon is checked by the army. if so much as the ammo casing is broken, then the holder of the weapon is directly accountable. penalties can be very severe if the weapon is used or the ammo missing. and that's on top of the fact that the holder has a responsibility to ensure that his weapon isn't lying about. i know someone who had their cellar burgled and his weapon stolen. it was eventually retrieved by the police and the army came to his place to investigate whether he had effectively secured his weapon (even though he had been burgled). they checked the locks on the cellar, the doors, the entry to the building before finally discharging all blame.
so i think that when you have those kinds of checks on weapon holders, can you effectively change a culture and make them more conscientious.
Culling the herd
Yup, every so often we have to cull the herd. Sometimes they take care of it themselves. We'll keep our guns though. It is amuzing to listen to all you sheep bleat so loud about our freedoms. Too bad you so easily surrendered yours. Maybe that's why we're the super power and you're not.
The incident, worthy as it is of a Darwin Award, being full of grim humour, is sad - for me anyway. It has nothing to do with gun laws, nationality, which state he lived in or anything else. It was just a crazy moment and the pain to his friends and relatives is unimaginable. I'd love a fiver for all the crazy moments I survived; through booze, drugs, reckless driving, featherbrained use of a power saw - and so on. I've been very lucky.
In the US, people can own and use firearms. In the UK that's not supposed to happen (though it does, increasingly). That doesn't make us any better than the yanks - indeed, as all prohibition attempts have proved, prohibited things become more attractive. Gun crime stats in the UK show that plenty of people can get hold of firearms, legally or otherwise. Maybe we would be better off if they were legal ... ?
What any of this has to do with any war, past or present, is beyond me. It's one hell of an escalation to be joking about some Texan kid blowing his brains out and then arguing the toss about a nation's contribution to a war. Real pub car park stuff, though these days, fisticuffs is replaced with knives and guns. If we fight so stupidly on a blog, where won't we fight?
Yes, and where were the yanks when the Spanish Armada was threatening us?
What do you call....
...an American with PHDs in maths & physics?
- NASA boffin: RIDDLE of odd BULGE FOUND on MOON is SOLVED
- Pic Mars rover 2020: Oxygen generation and 6 more amazing experiments
- Microsoft's Euro cloud darkens: US FEDS can dig into foreign servers
- Plug and PREY: Hackers reprogram USB drives to silently infect PCs
- Boffins spot weirder quantum capers as neutrons take the high road, spin takes the low