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Bowling For Columbine? - Page 2

post #21 of 36
Originally posted by dentente
I would like to find numbers for the entire EU compared to the USA for death by firearm. The two populations would then be more alike.
there are tons of stats available on the net. here's an interesting comparison of homicide rates between the laidback capital of America and a European hotspot of seemingly never-ending violence.

murders per 100k people

San Diego : 8
Belfast (yes, that Belfast) : 4
post #22 of 36
Just gotta chime in here:

see my reply (near the bottom of the page) on this thread: http://mothering.com/discussions/sho...threadid=83846

I recommended watching this movie AND I am a hunter (as I have mentioned several times on this board in various contexts).

The scene in the bank is good and there were no lies, as far as I remember. The bank officer DID say "After the background checks". They DID offer guns as a premium. I think it IS wierd to do that. (Of course, I think any account-opening gifts ARE wierd, I'd rather they just paid decent interest.: But, guns are waaaay wierder than toasters.) And, as an acquaintence of mine who has a gun shop in Duluth could tell you, background checks don't tell you what the person is thinking right now. Long story behind that one.

And I lived in Europe. In Spain, the gun laws, in practice, are very similar to a lot of places here. You apply for a permit, you get a background check, get a permit and you can buy a gun. Know what? Hardly anyone does. Why? I'm not sure, but I think it has something to do with not being afraid of the world and everyone around them. And this is in a country with an active home-grown, terrorist organization and four police forces with the right to just pick you up and hold you in jail without a warrant. Somehow, they are less afraid than we are.

In Britain, the gun laws are very strict. And, in my experience, that's a good thing. The quantity of violence I encountered there was surprising. It is usually in specific places/times (like Rangers/Celtics matches), so it is avoidable, but it was there like clockwork. (I was there in the early '80s)

And, in Switzerland, it seemed like nearly every house had a gun. Of course, every adult male was in or had been in the army and was still on a sort of "ready reserve" status.

Perhaps someone else here could come up with the actual stats.

Anyhow, I think this movie is worthwhile. And, you can't say anything concrete about any movie/book/piece of art/etc. unless you've seen/read it. The most one can say is "From what I heard, I didn't want to spend my money/time on it."
post #23 of 36
Originally posted by Jennifer Z
I think the most moving part of the film was the speech he gave to the college crowd.
Was this on the 2nd DVD??? Because I didn't see that. I'll have to rent it again. I really enjoyed it. (DH felt he was full of it. I found myself agreeing with most of what he was saying.)

I started sobbing (unexpectedly) when I saw the planes flying into the WTC. The South Park bit was brilliant. I also loved the interview with the South Park artist and what he had to say about the Columbine shooters.

The part that got me angry was about the welfare mother who had to drive so far and be away from her 6 yr old for so many hours. I just learned that the Senate (?) passed a measure where they would increase the back-to-work hours from 30 to 36.

If Americans were really connected to each other, and really cared about each other (instead of their own nuclear families) then Dick Clark would have cared enough to listen to what RM had to say. Then he would have done something positive about it. He's rich enough... he can afford it.

Maybe that's just really it... we are not the "UNITED" States of America. We are pretty divided and keep it that way. I love Oprah (many people can't stand her) and one of the things she loves to do is highlight her "Angel Network" where ordinary people around the country start doing good deeds to help others. That's what we need more of... more people need to step up to the plate.... because we are all the part of the same tapestry.

I do think we are a culture of fear and paranoia (vaccines being one example) and I loved his interview with Marilyn Manson.

and my favorite part was when Kmart came out the 2nd day to announce they would no longer sell bullets. I was sooo sad for the kids who were shot. I was about to sit down and write them a letter that I would never shop there again.

Sadly, the same week I saw it (about 2 weeks ago) a father in San Diego (I read this in the LA Times, I don't watch local news) waited in a parked car on a street for his 14-year-old son to come jogging by with his track team. He got out (son smiles and says "Hi Dad!") and when his back is turned, dad shoots him in the back and drives away. The parents were never married. The boy complained in therapy that he was afraid his father was going to harm him and dad was just served with some papers by the sheriffs department to stay away from his son. They were going to have a hearing about whether or not he should turn in his fire arms. The father went home and made a few calls telling people what he did "I just killed ----" and shot himself. I guess he felt that he had no access to his son, the boy was better off dead.

What the hell?

See... I'm not opposed to hunting, etc.... but there are one too many insane Americans (and you won't know until they snap) or slimey Americans (like the kids in the Columbine movie - who went into poor, black neighborhoods to sell guns ).

I think there needs to be * some * limits on gun ownership - for everyone's safety. But the NRA won't hear of it.

The Canadian house-tour was enlightening... what the hell is wrong with Americans? Why are we so destructive?

Originally posted by dentente
This film helped me see how dehumanizing this society has become and I do not think it's the video games or the movies that are making it happen.
Is it our babyhood? Our upbringing? The fact that many of us were FF and left in playpens for many hours alone? Left alone to CIO? Does this set us up for rage? Stress-prone? Jumpy? Paranoid? Fearful?

Edited to add: I believe we start out being alienated by our parents... and that alienation (from self and others) continues through young adulthood. Some people snap (Columbine shooters) many more don't.

THEN we are pumped by TV, society, and now government which doesn't help matters. Public education (we are all taught at an early age to sit still and follow orders and not question) does not help.

Is the "nuclear family" part of the problem.... all of us are so isolated from each other... maybe humans really need tribes ??? And when it is not present in the formative years in healthy ways... normal, good people find their own tribes (MDC, PTA, LLL, NRA...) and other people just go more inward and snap (the unabomber...).

Just my rambling off the top of my head...

Originally posted by dentente
America remains a mystery to me and I live here.
Me too.
post #24 of 36
Thread Starter 
See. The more I turn over this conundrum in mind, the more I am convinced that watching the news is actually harmful to your mental health. That is not to say all tv is harmful. I just think the major new networks play to our worst fears, amplifying and refining them. My neighbor bought her guns after watching the L.A. riots on tv. She was certain a horde of angry minorities would come maruading into her suburban shangrilah and she would be prepared. She was and still is afraid minorities. She is civil to them in public but I would characterize her as fearful in general.

She seems typical to me. And it' so sad to live your life fearing your neighbors. This is the america that Moore is talking about. A Nation of Gun Nuts or Just Plain Nuts?

Just plain nuts if you ask me.

Turn off Faux. Turn off CNN. Turn off MSNBC.
Turn it all off and live one day at a time. Try to be kind to your neighbors and get to know them. Try not to let the media force you to live in a culture of fear.

post #25 of 36

This country has ended up being "divided and conquered" with all our drive for "independence". We have taken the idea of political independence and self-determination and used it at every level, to the point of insanity.

We are told to exhibit "family values" but our economy drives them apart. (ie: a kid gets out of college and frequently has to travel across the country to the latest job hotspot to work)

And then, family values are supposed to be "nuclear family". NOT a healthy or normal ideal. Didn't even exist until after WWII. My father was raised by an extended family. And they all lived in the same neighborhood.

Less isolation in the "old" days. Less getting your picture of the world from a box that is manipulated by people who want you to stay quiet. Bread and Circuses. And they want you to stay afraid. So they can steal more of your soul from you.

I feel a soapbox moment coming here. Gotta quit. You all already said it.

post #26 of 36
Originally posted by dentente
See. The more I turn over this conundrum in mind, the more I am convinced that watching the news is actually harmful to your mental health.
This reminds me... I was in Barnes & Noble the other day and saw a cool book, wrote down the title, now I can't find the slip of paper.

Shock ? something

written by a woman, the premise of the book was that the TV news or watching acts of violence in the media really DOES hurt our psyches. I want to read it.
post #27 of 36
Thread Starter 
Common Shock: Witnessing Violence Every Day--How We Are Harmed, How We Can Heal

Kaethe Weingarten

From Publishers Weekly
Weingarten defines "common shock" as the biological and physiological feeling that "is triggered by our being witness to an event or an interaction that we appraise as disturbing," which can range from watching a parent hit a child to watching a television news report about a terrorist bombing. She argues that this kind of common shock is an experience that can have "chronic debilitating effects," but that "few people know how to deal with it themselves or, crucially, help children do so." Drawing upon recent research as well as her work as part of the Witnessing Project (which helps individuals, families and communities deal with violence), Weingarten details typical interpersonal consequences of common shock, such as being driven into silence and losing trust in people. Her primary solution to common shock is encouraging people to act "as compassionate witnesses to others," as a way of helping others regain a "sense of safety" and community, and she states that research suggests that "small compassionate actions performed routinely could have a major impact." Weingarten may overexplain what seems to be a fairly straightforward idea, but she provides a beneficial service by responding to what is clearly a current social problem; the two appendices provide direct and useful recommendations for how to help others deal with the shock triggered by disturbing everyday events.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

I'm ordering it. Thanks.

post #28 of 36
I watched this movie last week. I loved it. As art alone, it was a delight and to be honored.

I also agree, his seemingly final conclusion, now that I mulled it over, seems to be we kill because we fear. And we fear needlessly.

Another idea was our social support system sucks, and the poor fall through the cracks, without hope, without love, with no "leisure" to care for their children.

I think he was a remarkable interviewer and got all kinds of different people to open up and say surprising things.

MM, I to you.
post #29 of 36
A lot or shall I say, the majority of the people in America do not agree with the stuff our government does. OUr current president didn't even win the election.
post #30 of 36
WHAT IS IT THEN?????? Why does the United States have sooooooooooooooooo many gun related deaths??????


watching biased news that is all killing, raping......... How else are we suppose to feel after that?
post #31 of 36

In Case Anyone Missed This...

How to Deal with the Lies and the Lying Liars When They Lie about "Bowling for Columbine"
by Michael Moore

post #32 of 36
Thread Starter 
That man is so freaking funny.

post #33 of 36
My family and I watched "Bowling for Columbine" the other night on DirecTV (satellite). I was really impressed.

I do own a gun and I do know how to use it.

"Bowling for Columbine" contains a very poignant moment in my opinion, when Mr. Moore is speaking with Charlton Heston. Mr. Heston states that perhaps Americans are so violent because our history is a history of violence.

Apparently Mr. Heston's thought has been turning the wheels in my youngest son's mind also. He is 18. Last night we were talking about the Salem witch trials...something was on TV about it briefly...and we talk about what we are watching frequently. My son referred to our history as a "history of hubris". I was taken aback. It made me think. And as I thought about it...and looking at the history that is being made today,.... well, I can't disagree with him. And of course, we ended up talking about "Bowling for Columbine" and referring back to Mr. Heston's aforementioned speculation.

As for Bowling for Columbine, well, everyone at my house enjoyed it and wanted to see it again.

I don't really care to naysay or criticize Mr. Moore as I feel enough of that has been done in many spaces by many others over time and I cannot say anything new. I think that Mr. Moore learns alot, reports on what he found, leaving it to the viewer to take it as they will, and then walks with the lessons learned. At least that is what I observe about him.

The fellow at the missile plant (was that Lockheed Martin?) was suffering from cognitive dissonance about the connection between having a bomb plant that supplies WMD's to the military and violence in the host community. Seems to me that if he had allowed himself to perceive and then admit any connection in his mind, he would have broken down. I can't imagine what folks who work in the arms manufacturing industry must tell themselves in order to continue that work. I imagine the pay is phenomenal...especially right now, but moreover, how do they reconcile what their product is meant to do, with their everyday lives, kids, home, etc.?

I am not criticizing or judging folks in that field but am just wondering out loud about that. Everyone has to do something for a living after all...too bad industry doesn't funnel money into retooling/retraining for peace-based industry such as alternative energy- I mean REAL alternative energy technologies, not the lipservice given by this administration to it to appease or shut others up- the way they do for destruction-based industries. I think that it is a hugely untapped direction for our country to explore and pursue...but that is another topic for another day.

Sorry to post such a lengthy one...Joyce in the mts.
post #34 of 36
I thought the movie was quite an eye-opener. The media does rule us with fear, I believe. It raised a lot of good questions.
post #35 of 36
My pastor was shot to death in his church after a bible class by a member who had been there for 5 or so years . He bleed to death in my assistant pastors arms . This happened back in 1998 in Trotwood,OH . It seems like yesterday he was here . I feel something needs to be done about guns . Something ........
post #36 of 36
[QUOTE=dentente]See. The more I turn over this conundrum in mind, the more I am convinced that watching the news is actually harmful to your mental health.

I totally agree with that. I cannot watch the news anymore. It is so disturbing, and bloody, if it bleeds it leads. I can't read the newspaper either. I have no idea whats going on, and I'm happier that way, sorry. I get depressed when I read and watch the news. It makes me feel helpless and like everything would be so much better if the planet just slammed into another planet, kwim? It doesn't affect everyone that way, but for example, when I watched Farenheight I cried for two days afterwards. My son was born 7/21/01 and I was already teetering on the edge by Sept. 11, that day kicked me into the abyss of PPD. The coverage was relentless. I felt physically barraged with words and images that I could not escape from. In the store, at the restaurant.
And after the tsunami, I purposely avoided watching coverage of it, we did donate some money to the fundraiser, and dh just insisted on watching coverage. It angered me because I felt like he was being voyeuristic, which was irrational of me, but it was how I felt. I made the mistake of watching an interview with Giselle the supermodel who had been in the tsunami, and that kicked me into a depression that I needed St. Johns Wort to pull myself out of. I can't watch the news like normal people.
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