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1 Bob Dillon  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 8:18:31am

Switzerland's gun culture fits right in as well. And, yes, I am speaking from experience vs. something I read somewhere. An armed society is a polite society.

2 Randall Gross  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 8:31:41am

See here:

3 researchok  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 8:39:50am

re: #2 Randall Gross

The WAPO article is right but does neglect the one point Tablet brings forth- that military personnel all have weapons at their disposal at all times.

It is true Israel (and Switzerland) have strong gun laws, they also have military issued weapons which fall outside those laws.

As the article highlights it is the culture in addition to strict gun laws which has a profound impact on society.

4 researchok  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 8:43:34am

re: #1 Bob Dillon

I would say an armed society with a healthier attitudes toward guns is a more polite society.

Guns are in the end a tool.

Like all tools they can be used appropriately or they can be used inappropriately. How we teach responsibility and accountability ( for both the individual and society) makes all the difference.

5 Bob Dillon  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 8:53:59am

re: #4 researchok

Gun politics in Switzerland are unique in Europe. Switzerland does not have a standing army, instead opting for a peoples' militia for its national defence. The vast majority of men between the ages of 20 and 30 are conscripted into the militia and undergo military training, including weapons training. The personal weapons of the militia are kept at home as part of the military obligations; Switzerland thus has one of the highest militia gun ownership rates in the world.[1] In recent times political opposition has expressed a desire for tighter gun regulations.[2] A referendum in February 2011 rejected stricter gun control.[3]


Each such individual is required to keep his army-issued personal weapon (the 5.56x45mm Sig 550 rifle for enlisted personnel and/or the 9mm SIG-Sauer P220 semi-automatic pistol for officers, medical and postal personnel) at home. Up until October 2007, a specified personal retention quantity of government-issued personal ammunition (50 rounds 5.56 mm / 48 rounds 9mm) was issued as well, which was sealed and inspected regularly to ensure that no unauthorized use had taken place.[4] The ammunition was intended for use while traveling to the army barracks in case of invasion.


Its all about attitude. S'land still has its share of kooks but they are dealt with swiftly and harshly (by Swiss standards). Great place to live and play.

6 Destro  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 8:56:05am

re: #1 Bob Dillon

An armed society is a polite society.

Armed society has zero to do with a polite aka civil society. See Japan.

Maybe, just maybe, the Swiss seem more civil because they spend so much money on their govt run health system which has a healthy emphasis on mental illness treatments?


You actually show your American pathology inherent in this country's gun culture that the only thing keeping you safe is your ability to do violence on others as some sort of MAD doctrine.

7 Destro  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 8:57:11am

re: #5 Bob Dillon

Mythbusting: Israel and Switzerland are not gun-toting utopias


8 Randall Gross  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 9:08:35am

re: #3 researchok

But it's also not like most wingnuts paint it either, and that's the point.

9 Randall Gross  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 9:11:28am

I be master of the obvious once more: in the US if you have a gun in your house you are more likely to die by gunshot, and 2 out of 3 times it's going to be by your own hand holding your own gun. If you are 55+ and/or have a history of substance abuse, depression or mental illness, the likelihood goes up.

10 researchok  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 9:39:35am

re: #8 Randall Gross

That is exactly the point.

The right can dance all night long but in the end it is the culture.

We change the dysfunctional gun culture we change the reality.

You lived in proximity to that culture in Alaska- closer than most of us.

That insight from experience is very different than academic insight.

11 Randall Gross  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 9:48:08am

re: #10 researchok

Yep, it's why I instantly understood what Pakistani bloggers were talking about when they were mentioning "Kalashnikov Culture" and it's repercussions even before the total meltdown over there.

12 Romantic Heretic  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 10:05:35am

re: #1 Bob Dillon

Switzerland's gun culture fits right in as well. And, yes, I am speaking from experience vs. something I read somewhere. An armed society is a polite society.

No, a polite society is a polite society. Canada's society isn't well armed, and we're famed for our politeness. Conversely, the U.S. is very well armed, and famed pretty much for its lack of courtesy.

The sets do not overlap necessarily.

13 bratwurst  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 11:20:22am

re: #1 Bob Dillon

Switzerland's gun culture fits right in as well. And, yes, I am speaking from experience vs. something I read somewhere. An armed society is a polite society.

88 guns for 100 Americans does not seem to have resulted in a "polite society" here. How many more guns will this require in your "experience"?

14 Political Atheist  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 12:23:44pm

re: #13 bratwurst

That's obvious. It's the culture that needs the work. Even a zero guns per person, our obviously violent culture needs work. We are a violent country by any standard.

15 bratwurst  Mon, Dec 17, 2012 12:34:27pm

re: #14 Political Atheist

That's obvious. It's the culture that needs the work. Even a zero guns per person, our obviously violent culture needs work. We are a violent country by any standard.

So then we are in agreement: to say "an armed society is a polite society" is absolutely wrong.

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