Guns do kill people: Gun restrictions for violent misdemeanors lower homicides by 23%
Turns out that laws (already in action in 22 states) that don't allow violent people to own firearms actually lower homicides.
A study by the University of Michigan shows that not giving guns to violent people reduces death. In any other reality that would be a no-brainer — i.e. don't give guns to people who have shown violent tendencies — but the political climate that we're in dictates that we have to question that logic.
Checking a database of offenders could save thousands of lives, as it would prevent violent people from possessing firearms. NRA aficionados say that this could lead to profiling and the yawn-inducing "they'll take our guns!" line, but quite frankly the only thing it would lead to is less angry dudes (predominantly white and poor) from owning guns. Is this a bad thing? Only if you live in a Libertarian idealist fever dream and/or an Ayn Rand novel. The popular line is "guns don't kill people, people kill people" — but you can't fire a person at 768mph (the speed of a bullet). That's incredibly difficult. So perhaps giving less people who want to kill people weapons in order to do so is in order? Here's hoping.
Some of the best findings from the study:
- "Restraining orders for dating partners that include firearm restrictions (present in 22 states) were linked to a 10 percent decrease in romantic partner homicides and a 14 percent reduction in partner homicides committed with firearms. Dating partner statutes go beyond traditional domestic violence restraining order laws, which cover spouses, ex-spouses, couples that live together or have lived together and couples that have children together. Zeoli noted that nearly half of intimate partner homicides are committed by dating partners who often aren’t covered by these traditional partner categories in firearm-restriction laws."
- "Gun restrictions that cover emergency restraining orders in domestic violence cases were associated with a 12 percent reduction in intimate partner homicides."
- "Permit-to-purchase laws were linked to an 11% reduction in intimate partner homicides. These laws, active in ten states including Michigan and New York, require a permit from a law enforcement agency – and thus a criminal background check – to purchase a firearm. (While federal law requires a criminal background check to buy a gun from a licensed dealer, most states allow the purchase of firearms from private sellers without a background check. Other states mandate background checks for all gun sales, but don’t require a permit or interaction with law enforcement.)"
- "Laws requiring individuals with domestic violence restraining orders to relinquish firearms were associated with a 22 percent reduction in firearm intimate partner homicide."
Research in plant neurobiology shows that plants have senses, intelligence and emotions.
- The field of plant neurobiology studies the complex behavior of plants.
- Plants were found to have 15-20 senses, including many like humans.
- Some argue that plants may have awareness and intelligence, while detractors persist.
Most people think human extinction would be bad. These people aren't philosophers.
- A new opinion piece in The New York Times argues that humanity is so horrible to other forms of life that our extinction wouldn't be all that bad, morally speaking.
- The author, Dr. Todd May, is a philosopher who is known for advising the writers of The Good Place.
- The idea of human extinction is a big one, with lots of disagreement on its moral value.
Since the idea of locality is dead, space itself may not be an aloof vacuum: Something welds things together, even at great distances.
- Realists believe that there is an exactly understandable way the world is — one that describes processes independent of our intervention. Anti-realists, however, believe realism is too ambitious — too hard. They believe we pragmatically describe our interactions with nature — not truths that are independent of us.
- In nature, properties of Particle B may depend on what we choose to measure or manipulate with Particle A, even at great distances.
- In quantum mechanics, there is no explanation for this. "It just comes out that way," says Smolin. Realists struggle with this because it would imply certain things can travel faster than light, which still seems improbable.