4/05/2009

Maybe We Should Ban Guns In Commercials...

Maybe it's just me...Maybe I don't watch enough TV...

Here I am watching the NCAA Men's Basketball semi finals and they cut to a commercial. I thought it was a preview for some upcoming show, but it was a commercial for Jimmy John's sandwiches. In the commercial posted below, guns are blazing, people were being terrorized, etc. After the game, the news ran the story on the shooting and killing of three police officers in Pittsburgh.

Maybe it's time to ban guns in commercials. Below is a link to the commercial of which I speak:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=00f2Ac9e98g&feature=player_embedded

Three officers die in US shooting



Police say N.Y. immigrant shooter's act no surprise

5 comments:

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Roadkill said...

Sunny,

Come on now; a few recent gun-related tragedies should not make for precipitous, unconsitituional lawmaking.

If that were the case, we would be increasing the penalties for tax evasion in the wake of recent Executive-branch nominations.

More to the point, here is some counter-intuitive information:

"In Gallup polling conducted prior to last week's gun massacre at an immigrant center in Binghamton, N.Y., only 29% of Americans said the possession of handguns by private citizens should be banned in the United States. While similar to the 30% recorded in 2007, the latest reading is the smallest percentage favoring a handgun ban since Gallup first polled on this nearly 50 years ago."

The report continues:

"Separately, the October Crime survey found just under half of Americans, 49%, wanting the laws covering the sale of firearms to be made stricter than they are now. This is the lowest percentage favoring stricter gun laws in Gallup trends since the question was first asked in 1990. While only 8% say gun laws should be made less strict, 41% say they should remain as they are now."

Source: http://www.gallup.com/poll/117361/Support-Gun-Control-Laws-Time-Lows.aspx

I suppose that these numbers might change somewhat in the wake of the homocidal/psychopathic shooting in New York, but it surely indicates that Americans seem to find the continued restrictions on guns undesirable.

As for your point on strange gun-focused commercials, I don't have any problem with that. I suppose it might deter one in one hunderd.

Frankly, I think more commercial restrictions on BEER COMMERCIALS would be a big plus for society, perhaps reducing the number of teen/college-age alcohol poisonings and accidental deaths.

Sunny B. said...

RK: Since approximately half the households in America have some type a gun and I happen to live in one of those households, I don't think banning guns will realistically happen. That's that warm-n-fuzzy-motherly-love thinking that is swaddled in the bosom of left leaning do gooders.

My point is more with the commercials. I say make an agreement that no guns are shown on commercials between the hours of 7 AM and 10 PM. Using the F-word brings a big fine if uttered on the TV. The natural display of male and female private parts is against the law. We all got private parts and pretty much know what they are and look like.

I watch little commercial TV, other than hockey, football, baseball and college basketball. I watched one episode of 24 Hours because the ontherborderline.netters made such a big deal out of it. I don't go to movies that display gratuitous violence, because I think it is wrong. That's my thing...

I think enough studies have been done to show that violence on TV has an impact on our impressionable youth. Of course, these are probably the same kids play the realistic video games where the object is to kill the enemy.

I don't think anything I've suggested here violates the 1st or 2nd Amendments in a discussion with responsible adults. I don't know if what I'm advocating will deter any killings or gun violence. It's not always about that...from my perspective.

Beer commercials...it won't bother me if they went away. Maybe we should reduce the drinking age to levels like in Europe. Maybe should legalize pot. It is readily available and keeping it illegal contributes to death and violence via that free market approach of the illegal drug market.

Do you think the 1st and 2nd Amendments apply equally to minor children and adults? Do you think as a society it is the job of the adults to filter the aspects of adulthood from the impressionable minds of our youth?

Roadkill said...

Sunny,

Based on your comments, we probably aren’t as far apart on this issue as I originally thought.

We live in an age when many parents have thrown up their hands in frustration and surrender to the overwhelming influence of popular culture. TV and its commercials bear a large part of the blame, as does the internet and other on-demand stimuli such as Ipods, Cell phones, and video games. In this context it is very appealing to think that the government can step in and (yet again) act loco parentis for children bereft of proper guidance and/or protection. For that is part and parcel of the modern “me” generation (that would be us, Sunny) who seem to think that when life gets too hard, it’s the government’s responsibility to take over. A recipe for despotism, but hey, it sure beats the hard work of taking care of self and same.

And so while I agree that TV, Internet, and Culture all conspire to corrupt our children, I have a philosophical problem with the solution of the Government stepping in to “solve” the problem – which, again, is of our own making due to our hesitancy to protect our children from bad influences or temptations of the modern culture. There are some homes that have thrown the TV’s out for this very reason. Those parents, who probably grew up watching TV, are willing to sacrifice their TV watching pleasure in the interests of protecting their children from its more nefarious influences. The rest of us, who love our TV (and Internet), want some “easy” solution like a government mandated proscription of certain types of commercials or programming. That way, it’s the government that is playing the heavy, and we can avoid the responsibilities of proper parenting.

Government is not our Daddy. We, the free-est people on earth, do not (or at least should not) need some temporal power to tell us what to watch, how to live, or by what standards we rear our children. Rather, we need to get back in touch with our basic values, reject the temptations of modern culture, and bring up our children to be productive and virtuous citizens. Not easy, I know. Much easier to hit the “Easy Button” and let Big Brother do the heavy lifting for us. But there is a cost to such an out. Its called abdication of responsibility, both as a parent, and as a free citizen. Its also, as I said before, a slippery slope that ends in government control over all aspects of our lives.

As to the questions posed toward the end of your post, I tend to think that the 18 year old drinking age was probably a better idea than the current 21 year old mark, for a variety of reasons not the least of which is that the 18th year marks adulthood for virtually every other aspect of life (e.g. military service, voting, general emancipation from parents). And your idea of legalization of pot probably has merit as well. Pot does little to no damage to the casual user, and even for those hopelessly addicted, its impact is relatively mild and benign. We spend far too many resources on controlling and policing it, resources better spent on harder drugs that truly ruin lives and families.

To your last two questions: No, and Yes. The very idea that children are merely “little adults” must be relegated to the ash-heap of new-age nonsense, lest we continue as a society to abdicate our responsibilities as parents and continue to defer to Uncle Sammy Warbucks to bring up our children and tell us how to live.

It doesn’t take a village. It takes a parent. Preferably two, best if of opposite sex.

Roadkill said...

Sunny,

Here’s an very timely (4-7-09) example of my point. Its Canadian, not American, but close enough, and it pointedly illustrates how government is becoming (or has become?) the arbiter of how we will rear our children.

It is also a cautionary tale of what happens when we treat children as "little adults" with all the constitutional protections of real adults, and treat them with just as much deference as the parents charged with their upbringing.

“Quebec dad sued by daughter after grounding loses his appeal”

A Quebec father who was taken to court by his 12-year-old daughter after he grounded her in June 2008 has lost his appeal.

Quebec Superior Court rejected the Gatineau father's appeal of a lower court ruling that said his punishment was too severe for the wrongs he said his daughter committed.

In its ruling, issued Monday, the province's court of appeal declared the girl was caught up in a "very rare" set of circumstances, and her father didn't have sufficient grounds to contest the court's earlier decision.

The family's legal wrangling started with a dispute over the girl's internet use. She had been living with her father after her parents split up when he grounded her in 2008 for defying his order to stay off the internet. The father caught her chatting on websites he had blocked, and alleged his daughter was posting "inappropriate pictures" of herself online.

Her punishment: she was banned from her Grade 6 graduation trip to Quebec City in June 2008, for which her mother had already granted permission.

The father — who had custody — withheld his written permission for the trip, prompting the school to refuse to let the girl go with her classmates.

That's when the girl asked for help from the lawyer who represented her in her parents' separation, and petitioned the court to intervene in her case.

Source: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/ottawa/story/2009/04/07/mtl-quebecgirl-sues-dad-0407.html