Since this subject has been discussed in various threads across the forum, I figured it deserved its own topic. I got the idea for this thread when I came across this news snippet which shows how an armed response can end a school shooting (and since it's Washington Times, I'm fairly confident it's not just NRA propaganda): http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/dec/18/prevention-of-school-massacre-shoots-down-argument/ The perp entered the school (apparently with an intent to commit a massacre) and killed himself 80 seconds later when he was confronted by an armed deputy. If my memory serves me right, there was an armed official at Columbine as well, but he failed to stop the massacre anyway. In my opinion, that still doesn't change the fact that if there are armed personnel in a school, they have a better chance to stop the massacre than if the only armed people in the school were the perpetrators. Instead of making this thread all about school shootings, I would like to also discuss private gun ownership in general, since it's been a hot topic here in Finland for years now, especially since our own school shootings took place in 2007 & 2008 (and two other, non-school -related shootings in 2009 & 2012). I often see that gun-related problems start to occur when you have armed people who don't know the first thing about their guns, how to handle them safely and responsibly, how to use them, the psychology of self-defense etc. Ignorance and misconceptions combined with guns can produce catastrophic results whereas if guns were treated more like cars, i.e. you had to partake in a specific training regime (including theory, i.e. local laws & regulations regarding guns and self-defense etc) in order to get your permit, even pass a physical & theory test, things might be different. At the very least, the number of gun-related accidents (and probably unjustified shootings) would go down and the benefits of private gun ownership would increase. Imo, such training ought to be mandatory, e.g. two weeks (a few times a week) every six months, and you'd have to pass the tests to keep your guns. That would ensure that gun owners would know their guns, they would understand gun and self-defense laws, and the training would help them react reasonably when confronted by a threat of violence. Anyway, these are some preliminary thoughts on the subject, just to give it an initial nudge, but feel free to branch out to other issues related to private gun ownership. The floor is yours.