Archive for Friday, February 16, 2018

Editorial: Time to pass gun control

February 16, 2018


There was another tragic mass shooting on Wednesday. Seventeen people died in Parkland, Fla., when a 19-year-old former student armed with an AR-15 rifle and “countless” high-capacity magazine clips shot up a high school.

President Donald Trump blamed the tragedy on the teen’s mental state. Florida Gov. Rick Scott said he would work with state officials to make sure students are safe when they go to school and that “individuals with mental illness never touch a gun.” Florida Sen. Marco Rubio offered prayers and condolences.

Not one of the leaders talked about gun control. Trump, Scott and Rubio weren’t about to get on the wrong side of the National Rifle Association, the most powerful lobby in U.S. politics. How else to explain the collective loss of common sense among so many lawmakers?

Common sense would dictate that Congress act to implement sensible gun control legislation, including a ban on weapons like the AR-15 and high capacity magazines that hold 30 rounds. Not only are those the tools the shooter used in Wednesday’s incident, but also, they were the weapons of choice in the mass shootings in Newtown, Conn.; San Bernardino, Calif.; Las Vegas; and Sutherland Springs, Texas.

Police said the AR-15 used in the Parkland shooting was purchased legally. In Florida, the AR-15 is easier to buy than a handgun. A handgun purchase requires a three-day waiting period, but anyone in Florida can buy an assault weapon from a store and leave with it that day, so long as the person is 18 and can pass a background check.

It wasn’t always this way. The AR-15 and high capacity magazines were banned from 1995 to 2004 under the so-called assault weapons ban. Congress let the ban expire in 2004.

The NRA and the politicians it funds like to argue that an assault weapons ban won’t stop mass murders. But any number of studies show the ban will significantly reduce the frequency of such shootings.

An analysis last fall by John Tures, a political science professor at LaGrange College in Georgia, showed that the U.S. endured 1.6 mass shootings per year when the assault weapons ban was in place. Since the ban was lifted, the average number has ballooned more than two and a half times to 4.18 mass shootings per year. And the number of victims in each mass shooting has spiked 33 percent as well.

And a study by professors at George Mason University, released last fall in the Journal of Urban Health, showed that assault rifles are used in 57 percent of mass murders and in 16 percent of police shootings. Add in polls that show a majority of Americans now support an assault weapons ban and you have a clear recipe for congressional action.

It is long past time for Congress to stand up to the NRA and implement reasonable gun control laws that data show will make Americans safer. Continued inaction is simply unacceptable.


Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

The AR-15 was not banned under the AWB. Certain scary features such as bayonet lugs and flash hiders were banned. I have an Armalite that I bought during the "ban". It is functionally identical to rifles made before and after the AWB. A tiny amount of research would have kept the writer here from repeating a obvious falsehood. BTW, over the last few decades the US government has sold hundreds of thousands of surplus AR type magazines of 20 and 30 round capacity. That genie is never going back into the bottle.

Larry Sturm 2 months, 1 week ago

No civilian needs a military assault rifle and if the military sold all of those high capacity magazines that is also wrong. Same with guns confiscated by police departments they should not be sold back to the public, they should all be melted down and not be usable.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

AR-15s are not military assault rifles. BTW, the word "need" does not appear in the Second Amendment.

Greg Cooper 2 months, 1 week ago

No, it doesn't. Neither do murder, massacre, or any of the other things for which these guns are used, out of proportion to any other firearm. Moot point.

Steve King 2 months, 1 week ago

Is that all you have to say Bob? Pounding people on sematics? A fools errand. An AR-15 was used to "assault" and kill 17 students and staff in Flordia. So yes, it became an assault weapon. How about some compassion? Some understanding? Instead we get gaslighting and diversions from you. Cruel intentions. Sad.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

Are you still irked over the spanking you got on another thread? Your keyboard is used to "assault" the truth.

John Middleton 2 months ago

And a Dodge sedan was used to kill protesters at a march in Charlottesville in August, 2017. That makes Chrysler vehicles "assault vehicles" and we should ban them.

Justin Hoffman 2 months, 1 week ago

The ignorance of the left on the subject of firearms is astounding.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

And the little rascals are proud of that ignorance and insult the people who try to educate them.

Bob Summers 2 months, 1 week ago

The congenital Liberal does not realize the second amendment is there to protect citizens unlike them, from Liberals like themselves, in the government.

Is it any wonder why the Liberal wants to disarm the citizen unlike them of firearms?

Richard Neuschafer 2 months ago

Because of congenital airheads like you we have mass shootings in public places. And you don't even know what a liberal is.

Bob Summers 2 months, 1 week ago

Test for levels of DRD4 gene polymorphism as one of the measures to determine worthiness, legality, to purchase a firearm.

Is there an elevated level of the Liberal gene cocktail?

No pop-pop for you.

Joe Blackford II 2 months, 1 week ago

comment has not been posted due to restrictions on rational thought & civil discourse in the shallow end of the gene pool.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

Yes, it is a pity how the anti-gunners tend to run off at the keyboard.

Joe Blackford II 2 months, 1 week ago

Although I don't have a assault rifle, I have 3 rifles, 2 shotguns, a longbow & a crossbow (Made in HS, when I was a member of the NRA, & it still stood for something beyond ignorance & firearms manufacturers & a clueless cadre of donkey-in-9s).

Here's your award:

a What's Left-of-Lenin Poster dedicated to the mind of B. Smith

a What's Left-of-Lenin Poster dedicated to the mind of B. Smith by Joe Blackford II

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

You need a new meme, Joe. That one's all waxy and stuff.

Greg Cooper 2 months, 1 week ago

And that is exactly his point, ding-a-ling. You just will never get it, will you>

David Hann 2 months, 1 week ago

Republican senators and congressmen care more about the National Rif'le Association than they do the victims of senseless gun violence. The second amendment says "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." What well regulated militia did the latest shooter belong to? Lest any of you gun lovers play the "unpatriotic card" I enlisted in the Marines at age 19, served in Vietnam in 1966, and own weapons. I am no fan of the IRA, the gun lobby's best friend next to Republican so-called legislators. Civilized countries have gun control. This country has an epidemic of mass shootings. Time to vote out the gun lobby.

Doug Larson 2 months ago

Most guns used in Chicago killings are purchased in indiana.

Justin Hoffman 2 months, 1 week ago

David-- What part of "shall not be infringed" confuses you? And thank you for your service by the way!

Greg Cooper 2 months, 1 week ago

The part that actually is based on sensibility. Do you own a bazooka, or an atomic bomb., Justin? Should you be allowed to? I mean, infringing on your right to own weapons should not be allowed, right? Any kind of weapon? Is that sensible?

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

You are aware that the NRA isn't even in the top 50 organizations that contribute to politicians, aren't you?

Charles L. Bloss, Jr. 2 months, 1 week ago

An assault rifle is either fully automatic, or burst fire, which shoots three times with one trigger pull. These are military weapons designed for war. Semi-automatic look alike cousins are NOT assault weapons. This terminology was designed by liberals and the media, to scare people. An AR-15 makes an excellent hunting rifle, and it is great for target practice, as well. I would not own any illegal firearm, all of mine are revolvers or semi-automatics. When I hear about gun control, I wonder what types of guns the writers want to control, and why. There are thousands of AR-15 rifles owned in this country, that commit no crimes. What you need is control of people who misuse firearms. That is incredibly more difficult than targeting the object they use for evil purposes. Which is why these objects are targeted each time one is misused by an evil person. Gun crimes are the few where the object used is vilified as much or more than the criminal. This is why we have the second amendment.

Justin Hoffman 2 months, 1 week ago

All wonderful and valid points! However, it will fall on deaf ears as the left has been brainwashed into believing a false narrative on all things firearms.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

Ar-15s exist in many different calibers. Every game animal in this hemisphere can be hunted with an appropriately sized AR.

Gary Stussie 2 months ago

"There are thousands of AR-15 rifles owned in this country"

In 2012 there were an estimated 3.3 million AR-15 like rifles in US ... that was before Newtown and the last call for a ban, which drove sales through the roof.

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

CT has an assault weapon ban but that didn’t stop the shooting at Newton, CT. CA has an assault weapon ban but didn’t stop San Bernardino shooting But a new ban will stop shootings? How?

We need to stop the culture of gun violence, provide mental health, do better t conducting background checks - meaningful steps to curb gun violence.

As for the stats on the increase of mass murders - look how a mass shooting was defined back then and how it it is today. All the shootings in Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore, etc. That involve more than a person are considered mass shootings

Nishant Pandya 2 months, 1 week ago

The congenital Liberal does not realize the second amendment is there to protect citizens unlike them, from Liberals like themselves, in the smartcric government.

Joe Blackford II 2 months, 1 week ago

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ KNOW YOUR KANSAS HISTORY before making defamatory statements.

"Liberal really got its name from a spirit of hospitality and generosity. In the 1880’s water was a rare commodity in Southwest Kansas. Travelers and ranchers needed a place to rest their livestock and quench their thirst as they headed west and water was often very expensive.

S.S. Rogers homesteaded in this area, digging a well for his own use. Visitors were always granted permission to use the well and always offered to pay for the privilege. “Water is always free here,” was Roger’s reply."

Your use of the term doesn't fit the citizens of Kansas!

Andrew Applegarth 2 months, 1 week ago

If only the liberals of today were more like that. It used to be a liberal person was one who gave generously from their own. Today's liberal would gladly give away the water pumped by S.S. Rogers, but would not so willingly give away their own. No, today's liberals are all about giving away only what they take from others. The desire to give away more is seen as noble despite the fact there is no personal cost to them. Instead, they just demand more tax dollars to support their 'generosity'. Of course, if you manage to get a little bit of your tax dollars back, they call you a hypocrite for utilizing a program you unwillingly paid for.

So, remember the liberal of yesteryear fondly, but don't be such an ignorant moron that you confuse that person with the corrupted liberal of today.

Steve Hicks 1 month, 3 weeks ago

Not just Kansas history, but the English language.

Ever read "1984" ? One way evil rulers hold onto power is by "re-educating" people to accept their perversions of what words mean. "The Party" dinned in people's ears that "War is Peace; Freedom is Slavery; Ignorance is Strength" until people believed it. "Re-educated" to think in The Party's "Newspeak," people acted just the way The Party wanted them to.

"Liberal" still means "generous" in English. But "conservatives' " program of "re-education" for the last 40 years has been that "Liberal is Evil." Their "re-educated" followers parrot "conservatives' " Newspeak, and think and act just as "The Party" wants them to.

The Party's manipulation works very well, on some. Read the comments on this thread for several noteworthy examples.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 2 months, 1 week ago

I have vented my spleen on this before. The Second Amendment was written at a time in history that there was no established military defense for the new nation under threats from the British Crown. There was also the need to have a firearm to hunt for food to feed your family.

These needs no longer exist. We have the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force as a means of national defense. And you do not need to take a gun to the supermarket.

If the founding fathers had any idea of the horrible situation their careless wording would be in a document that is now viewed as the unalterable Word of God they would have not put such loose and easily misinterpreted wording into this document.

Go ahead, bash and trash me. I have been attacked before for pointing out these facts.

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

Point 1 - yes, the 2nd amendment was not written as clearly as it could have been. Compromise does this sometimes.

Point 2 - the 2nd amendment was intended not only to ensure we could defend ourselves from foreign enemies but from our government so the need still exists.

Point 3 - the 2nd amendment is a right and is law - do you propose we violate it?

If not, then why are your solutions? If yes, then why other rights and laws are you willing to have violated? First amendment, 4th, how about voting rights.

Waiting for your response.

Sam Crow 2 months, 1 week ago

Whitehead doesn't like the Second Amendment or the Twelfth Amendment.

It seems he only accepts the parts of the Constitution he agrees with.

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

Fred´s comments are as moronic as those that continue to point to Australia as a model. The US has a 2nd amendment - Autrailia doesn’t. The US has a porous border that allows illegal guns in. Australia is surrounded by water which makes smuggling more difficult.

I’m all for stopping violence but Fred and his ilk have no solutions.

Steve Hicks 1 month, 4 weeks ago

Good point, Brock: Australia is different than the U.S. because it has no "2nd Amendment."

Australia also differs from the U.S. in having infinitely less gun-violence.

Think there night be a causative link between those two differences, if you are "all for stopping violence" ?

Bob Summers 2 months, 1 week ago

I post this for the profound complex critical thinkers.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

"...“The calls we are hearing today for gun control have nothing to do with protecting Americans from violence. What you’re witnessing is a kind of class war. The left hates rural America, red America, gun-owning America, the America that elected Donald Trump. They hate them. Progressives are still in charge of most of the major institutions in this country and they despise the autonomy of an armed population. They want collective punishment for the sins of a few. They seek to obliterate our core constitutional right rather than trying to mitigate its downsides. They call it gun control, but it’s not. It’s people control. For the left, voters who can’t be controlled, can’t be trusted.”..."

Richard Aronoff 2 months, 1 week ago

In the first two years of President Obama's tenure, he had filibuster-proof majorities in both the House and the Senate and yet gun control never happened.

The Virginia Tech shooter who killed 32 people used handguns.

I enjoy reading posts from people like Fred Whitehead Jr., whose historical perspective doesn't extend beyond last Tuesday.

If Fred bothered to read Federalist 46, he would see that the 2nd amendment had nothing to do with hunting or the lack of a standing national army. It had everything to do with the people of the individual states being able to stand up to an all powerful central government. The founders had not forgotten about King George.

Fred Whitehead has compared the president to Adolph Hitler. Indeed, during the campaign he was incapable of commenting on any article without mentioning Trump and Hitler in the same sentence.

Here's the contradiction, if Fred really believed Trump was a potential dictator and the reincarnation of Adolph Hitler, he should be armed to the teeth!

When Diane Feinstein was asked if any gun control law could have stopped the Las Vegas shooting, her answer was no. But every one of the mass shootings in recent memory was carried out by someone with known mental health problems.

Finally, the Republicans did NOT vote against a law that would have denied people with mental problems the right to own a firearm. They voted against a bill that would have denied someone who could not handle their financial matters from owning a firearm. How many of you would like to be denied any of your constitutional rights because you had one or two maxed-out credit cards?

Joe Masterson 2 months ago

"In the first two years of President Obama's tenure, he had filibuster-proof majorities in both the House and the Senate and yet gun control never happened."

You left out the part that this filibuster proof majority only lasted about 4 months, but don't let facts get in the way of your rant.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 2 months, 1 week ago

"Here's the contradiction, if Fred really believed Trump was a potential dictator and the reincarnation of Adolph Hitler, he should be armed to the teeth!"

You don't know me, do you Richard?? As for my comparing Trump to Hitler, I have repeatedly made reference to two books by William Shirer regarding the Third Reich and bid folks to "read the books and make their own decisions. "The Nightmare Years" and "The Rise And Fall of the Third Reich" give a lot of thoughtful information that you need to read and come to your own conclusions. Not mine.

Trump's disgusting and incompetent display of ignorance in office are plenty of evidence of his failure in office as President of the United States. Other attempts to compare him to any past dictator or any other "leader" far outweigh my references.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

Fred's disgusting and incompetent display of personal hatred for the President colors every screed he posts. Don't ever change, Fred. You are most amusing.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

"... LJWorld encourages an open exchange of information and ideas and believes it is absolutely possible for people with varied points of view to discuss issues in a civil manner..." I fully expect Fred to be sent off the pitch immediately.

Ken Lassman 2 months, 1 week ago

I ran across this little piece that seems to be legitimate: might be handy the next time you talk to your legislators:

Here is the timeline of Congress’ actions to curb gun violence since the Sandy Hook mass shooting in December 2012. Included is the Kansas Congressional Delegation’s voting record on all Congressional actions where applicable.

December 2012: Sandy Hook School massacre.

April 2013 Senate rejects legislation expanding background checks to include private sales at gun shows and all Internet sales, while continuing to exempt most sales between family members and friends. Moran and Roberts both vote NO

July 2014: Senate has hearings on closing the “boyfriend loophole” that would reduce relationship homicides that kill 40-50 women a month by partners with guns. No action is taken (Neither Kansas Senator is on the Judiciary Committee which held the hearings).

July and October 2015: Legislation is introduced to close a loophole that allows a gun to be sold to someone if the background check will take longer than 3 days. No hearing is scheduled and the bill is not voted on. Nearly 3000 criminals and individuals with mental illness are allowed to purchase guns in 2015 alone.

December 2015: April 2013 legislation to expand background checks is reintroduced and the Senate votes it down again. Moran and Roberts both vote NO

June 2016: Senate voted down efforts to increase funding of and coverage of background checks and preventing suspected terrorists to be able to buy a gun. Moran and Roberts voted YES for the amendment increasing background check funding but then turned around and voted NO on the bill.

October 2017: Bills introduced to ban sales of “bump stock” add-ons. The bills have not been brought up for a vote.

December 2017: Bill to improve reporting of criminals to the background check database passes the House, but only when it is paired with measures that will allow people who have concealed carry privileges to have the same privilege in other states with reciprocal agreements. Senate has not voted on a similar bill. All Kansas House members voted for this bill.

Since Sandy Hook in December 2012, there have been 1634 Mass Shootings in the US where 4 or more people were injured or killed by a shooter. In other words, in the 1,141 days since the Sandy Hook shooting, there has been an average of 1.43 Mass Shootings Per Day.*

NRA contributions to Kansas congress members during the same time (2012-present) Moran: $10,000 Roberts: $10,000 Yoder: $10,000 Jenkins: $6,000 Marshall (2016-present): $3,000 Estes (2017): $2000

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

And most of this mass shootings are the type that occurred on Mass street with handguns not the type of mass shootings that occurred in Florida. The two re conflated to create hysterics and move a political agenda.

Ken Lassman 2 months, 1 week ago

Maybe that's your diversionary point but it sure as heck isn't mine. When Congress can't manage to pass legislation that prevents thousands of criminals and the certifiably mentally ill to buy a gun because of the 3 day exemption that throws safeguards away if it takes longer than that to do a background check, then I have a point to make. In 2015, 2,892 individuals who fit that description were identified after the fact and were forwarded to the ATF by the FBI. In 2016, that number had increased to 4,170: check it out for yourself:

These folks include both mass shooters like Dylann Roof and urban handgun violence--is that supposed to make me feel better? The NICS background check works pretty well, and is improving, but Congress has the power to make some simple changes that would make it considerably more effective and are lacking the leadership and guts to do just that.

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

What is the 3 day exemption to which you refer?

Andrew Applegarth 2 months, 1 week ago

It's a provision which prevents "passive denials" by simply not completing the process. An actual denial can be challenged, but a buyer has no recourse against a 'delay in processing'. It's made the news more often with concealed carry permits, but now all I can find are the penalties that have been enacted to put a stop to the practice.

Ken Lassman 2 months, 1 week ago

"Loophole" would have been a better word than "exemption." Here are the details of the loophole: In other words it can take up to an average of 25 days for the FBI to complete a background check, but because there has been a limit on the length of time a dealer can put a hold on giving the buyer their purchased gun (3 days), thousands of criminals and mentally ill individuals have been given their gun anyway, to the tune of the statistics I've cited above. Those lobbying against closing this loophole have argued that dealers were unfairly holding legal purchases as a way to passively withhold a gun from a legitimate buyer, but the FBI has recommended extending the waiting period to 30 days so they have the necessary time to do a full background check.

Doug Larson 2 months ago

The 3 day exemption needs to be changed. If it takes 2 weeks to do a background check then that's what it takes. It's important to do a thorough check before issuing the permit.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

The NRA isn't even in the top 50 organizations that donate to politicians. But keep banging those rocks together.

Ken Lassman 2 months, 1 week ago

You of course don't look at many of the other top contributers and social media/soft money organizations who collaborate with the NRA on any issues that concern anything to do with gun violence.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

The current clamor isn't for gun control. The real aim is people control.

christy kennedy 2 months, 1 week ago

Thank you for a simple and sane editorial. Dear god I need to remember to avoid reading comments.

Andrew Applegarth 2 months, 1 week ago

Are you afraid you might learn something and realize that the truth is not as simple as you would like it to be? If it was really that simple, we could just pass a law banning murder and be done with it...

That doesn't even cover the misuse of the terms "assault weapon" and "assault rifle" in order to stir up the ignorant masses with their inflammatory assault on truth and good journalism.

Steve Hicks 2 months, 1 week ago

N.P.R. yesterday interviewed Cameron Kaskey, a junior who survived the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

After asking about his on-site experience that day, the interviewer asked about the essay he'd published in response ("My Generation Won't Stand For This"), and he summarized his very articulate and angry view of N.R.A.-catspaw politicians and their followers stifling honest debate about gun-policy in America.

Mr. Kaskey's reply was spot-on when the interviewer asked what he'd say to the argument "...don't politicize this; it's too soon," which we hear after every mass-killing ?

"It's too late. It's too late. It's never too soon. The second this happened, it became too late. And to those who say we can't politicize this, they don't understand that if we don't politicize it, no action is going to come from this. We need to start moving now. And as much as we love thoughts and prayers, we don't need them from our lawmakers. We need action, and we demand it. And we're going to get it." (

Andrew Applegarth 2 months, 1 week ago

So he advocates acting rashly on emotion instead of waiting for rational thought to return and you praise that? Bad policy is almost always the result when lawmakers find it politically expedient to be seen "doing something" immediately.

I understand that he is scared and needs to believe that something "good" can come from what he went through. However, the reason "nothing" will happen if we wait for clearer heads to prevail is because there is much more to the situation than can be addressed by shooting from the hip at anything that moves.

As long as there are people like these shooters, they will find a way to enact their violence using the means that are available. Targeting guns is just a feel good distraction from the real problem and any real solution, not to mention the rights it violates and the increased crime it encourages.

Doug Larson 2 months ago

So is it too early to talk about Columbine? Sandy Hook? Virginia Tech? Chardon High school? The list goes on...... when is it time to start talking?

Andrew Applegarth 2 months ago

I don't know. Can you rationally talk about them or are you still triggered to shout "BAN GUNS!" every time they are mentioned? I still don't see anything being proposed that would have prevented them, that would be constitutional, that wouldn't put law abiding citizens at greater risk, and/or that weren't just a blatant exploitation of the situation to advance their preconceived agenda.

Until people like you are ready to deal with the real issues instead of just pushing another unconstitutional gun grab, it's still too early. You're just not mature enough yet.

Greg Cooper 2 months ago

Andrew, acting soon is not the same as acting rashly. For heaven's sake, why is it difficult to act quickly, when this whole debate has raged for years. Policy discussions have been ongoing for years, and have been pummeled by "policy discussions". It's time, now, to address this issue, rationally and strongly. To ignore this horrendous loss of life is, at the least, stupid, and, at most, allowing more and more killings, for no other reason than "politics". Just stop what we can, and stop it NOW!

Andrew Applegarth 2 months ago

Actually, while it is not necessarily the same thing, it often is which makes what you said just another lie. Thanks for revealing your nature quickly in this post as well. It's nice to get your measure early so I'm not shocked by the additional lies that follow.

As to why it is so difficult to act quickly, it is because the criminal enablers like you always promote the same agenda that you have pushed during all those years of debate, and they have been found lacking. Switching from rational thought to emotional response does not magically transform them into something other than ineffective feel-good measures and blatant violations of constitutional rights.

When you grow some integrity and can actually rationally address the issue like you claim to want to, despite doing everything you can to keep the discussion emotional, feel free to come back. Until then, take your own advice and shut up.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

In 1994, in the wake of the signing of the scary weapons ban, the Democrats lost 54 seats in Congress. I think there are a lot of people in Washington that remember that and do not want to be on the losing team again.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

In other news from the CBC: "...Obama's regulation would also have required the Social Security Administration to send the names of some people unable to manage their disability benefits because of mental impairments to the criminal background check system database. Those people, estimated to number around 75,000, could have been prevented from owning or purchasing a firearm and may have been forced to prove why they were competent enough to do so, opponents of the regulation argued. Those opposed, not surprisingly, included the gun lobby group the National Rifle Association. But on this particular issue, Trump also had backing from an organization usually highly critical of him: The American Civil Liberties Union. In a blog post last year, the ACLU said that while it does not oppose gun control laws, those laws need to be be fair and not based on prejudice and stereotype.Thousands of Americans whose disability benefits are managed by someone else range from young people with depression and financial inexperience to older adults with Down syndrome needing help with a limited budget, the ACLU wrote. "But no data — none — show that these individuals have a propensity for violence in general or gun violence in particular," the ACLU said. To add innocent Americans to this criminal database because of a mental disability "is a disturbing trend," it said. The regulation was also opposed by advocates for people with disabilities and mental health issues..." From those well-known lackies off the gun lobby, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

MerriAnnie Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

J. Robert Oppenheimer was the director of the Los Alamos Laboratory during World War II. He's credited with the creation of the atomic bomb along with Einstein.

Oppenheimer did express some regrets later.

When we march forward sometimes we don't do it exactly right and we have to find that out the hard way.

I believe that the open use and sale of semi and fully-automatic guns is one of those things. Now we're having to back up and re-evaluate the workability and safety issues with this type of weapon.

Ask yourselves, would it be okay for anybody to buy an atom bomb?

Why not?

The answer to that question is also the answer to the question, "Is it okay for a human being to have access to a semi-automatic gun... taking the chance that he is now, has always been, and always will be a sane human being?"

We're not gods. We're not infallible. We make mistakes sometimes. Big ones. This was one of them.

Andrew Applegarth 2 months, 1 week ago

While Oppenheimer's sentiment might have been just fine in a post-war era and in a country that already has the atomic bomb, it does not reflect the realities of the time when the bomb was actually being developed.

Despite what some fools seem to believe, the atomic bomb wasn't discovered by accident while researching a new zit cream. The Manhattan Project was created with the specific purpose of merging two existing things (bombs and atomic research) into a single weapon. Not only that, but the US was not the only country conducting this research. It was not a matter of if, but of when.

To put Oppenheimer's regrets in context, he's basically wishing that Germany had been the first to develop the atomic bomb. Or maybe that Japan could have been first and dropped them on us instead of the US dropping them on Japan.

Your naive position on guns is not much different. You are foolishly trying to disarm the good guys and are completely oblivious to what will happen when the criminals continue to ignore the law and be criminals. You ignore the truth that guns will continue to be sold on the black market. You ignore the fact that, if necessary, guns will be smuggled into the country, just like drugs, to meet demand.

"We're not gods. We're not infallible. We make mistakes sometimes. Big ones." One of your biggest is thinking that disarming me would save anybody and forgetting that disarming me just might get me killed.

Bob Smith 2 months ago

I expect that the hundreds of thousands who would have died in an invasion of Japan were rather glad Oppenheimer did what he did.

Steve Hicks 2 months, 1 week ago

There are always some feeble-minded N.R.A. (or Russian ?) tools who argue that gun-laws are pointless, because shooters will always find a way to enact violence by whatever means is available.

What they don't (choose to) "get" is that sane gun-laws are a way of controlling the "means" of military-grade firearms available to wannabe shooters.

They also fail to get that their rationale is an argument against law itself...since people are just going to steal, speed, murder, and beat their spouses anyway.

Andrew Applegarth 2 months, 1 week ago

So, are you part of the NRA or Russian, as you are the feeble minded tool?

One of the key points that your feeble mind fails to grasp is that outlawing murder, theft, speeding, etc doesn't violate anybody's other rights. On the other hand, banning firearms directly violates my 2nd Amendment rights and, by hampering my ability to protect myself, also violates my inalienable right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Another key point your feeble mind can't process is that stealing, speeding, murder, and spousal abuse are all actions. It is quite logical to legislate against actions that are undesirable. It is not so logical to legislate against objects with the false hope that it will somehow prevent these same actions despite them not requiring said objects and not being prevented by the laws directly prohibiting them.

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

Steve your ability to name call is quite impressive.

How about impressing me further by answering two simple questions. What mass murders hve been committed with military weapons and what constitutional new law would have stopped the FL shooting?

Can’t wait to hear your impressive answers.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Steve, where are you? Not able to come up with a solution? It’s okay, I release you from the challenge. Go ahead and name call.

Richard Neuschafer 2 months ago

Doing something more important than wasting his time on an idiot like you.

Steve Hicks 2 months ago

To tell the truth, Brock, I missed this comment. It's pretty boring reading pro-gun people's arguments, since they pretty much endlessly parrot the NRA's well-worn sophistries. It's rarely worth reading them individually.

If it's name-calling to say most pro-gun ideologues are boring, and puppets, I'm fine with that.

But you ask a couple real questions.

I'll let you answer the first: how many mass-shootings, in addition to the one last week, have involved an AR-15 ? It's a military weapon. There are others, but just the number of mass-shootings involving that one, for starters.

To your second question, no "new" constitutional law is required. Just the provisions of the Constitution's 2nd Amendment as written: that "the right to keep and bear Arms" serve the purpose of maintaining ""A well regulated Militia."

Brock Masters 2 months ago

A very ignorant comment. First the AR 15 has never been used by the military and only hs been marketed to civilians. I don’t know how many mass shootings hve involved the AR 15 but I suspect it is less than 1 percent of any weapon used in other mass shootings.

I’d direct you to DC v Heller to educate yourself on what the SCOTUS Has said the 2nd A means.

Sharilyn Wells 2 months, 1 week ago

with some people's logic you could justify private citizens having machine guns.

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

Hello, news flash - private citizens do have machine guns.

Steve Hicks 2 months ago

Which proves Sharilyn's point, doesn't it ?

Having provided proof her point is true, next are some values/moral questions for you.

Do private citizens need machine-guns ?

Is it good that private citizens have machine-guns ?

I know, I know: "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a machine-gun is a good guy with a machine-gun." But since that tired NRA meme also requires distinguishing "good" from "bad," it comes back to the basic moral question, doesn't it ?

Bob Smith 2 months ago

The word "need" does not appear in the Second Amendment.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

No it proves Sharilyn’s ignorance on the issue of gun laws.

There is no moral issue here. The government has set a very stringent process to own a machine gun. People abide those rules and this are acting legally. No moral issue.

Steve Hicks 1 month, 4 weeks ago

Any question...murder, for example...that deals with human actions involves a moral issue, Brock. Think about it.

Larry Sturm 2 months ago

People that don't want any common sense gun laws because of the second amendment. What about the rights of the people killed to having useful and purposeful life I hope none of you have relatives or children killed in a mass shooting.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

There are literally thousands of gun laws and generally , with few exceptions, those who support the 2nd amendment are not seeking to repeal them.

What I oppose are new laws that do nothing to curb gun violence but infringe upon the right of the law abiding citizen.

Name a common sense law that would have prevented the FL shooting and future shootings. Keep in mind assault weapons are banned in CA and CT but they had mass murders with weapons commonly referred to as assault weapons.

Also , the 1st amendmend is abused and people are harmed and die because of it. Would you be willing to accept similar laws limiting use of speech to those imposed on gun owners? Much of the speech abuse is done through the internet - background checks for users, limited access, age restrictions, etc.?

Bob Smith 2 months ago

Something on the order of 99.999999% of all semi-automatic rifles will never be used in a crime. According to FBI stats, in 2014, about 2% of all homicides involved a rifle.

Louis Kannen 2 months ago

As the overwhelming majority of Combat veterans such as myself would tell you, it's sheer, inexcusable madness to continue to allow the rampant, loop-hole permeated availability of these SEMI (easily converted to FULLY) Automatic weapons. How many more innocent lives need to be erased...HOW MANY??

Bob Smith 2 months ago

"...these SEMI (easily converted to FULLY) Automatic weapons..." Nope. Guess again.

Mike Riner 2 months ago

So nice to know you know what the overwhelming majority of Combat veterans think. I would be interested in some kind of data to back that up.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Instead of pushing for new gun control laws that, if they were even able to get passed, would not stop gun violence, advocates for stopping gun violence should direct their energy and resources to meaningful solutions.

The time is right to push for more mental health access and reporting to the background database.

Amend the lenient penalties for felons illegally possessing guns - the felón that caused the death of Kate Steinle in CA only faced a maximum of 3 years in prison for the weapon charge. Long sentences are needed for felons illegally possessing guns.

Better security in our schools.

Let’s focus on changing the culture that promotes gun violence. Ban violent video games and movies that glorify gun violence. Sure this one violates the 1st amendment but it is common sense so it is okay, right? :)

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Answer me this. If the democrats are willing to violate the Constitution in an effort to ban guns and really want to stop gun violence then why did they vehemently oppose stop and frisk which was effective in getting guns off the street?

Why do Democrats oppose banning violent video games and movies? It is common sense that these create a violent culture.

Why do Democrats push for lenient sentences for felons illegally possessing guns and the early release of violent offendo9?

Doug Larson 2 months ago

I have never heard that democrats want to ban guns. Where did you read this? I know a lot of democrats, and most of them have guns. Im curious where you got that information. I would like to read it.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Hillary suggested the Australia gun ban as a model for the US. CA and CT dem states have gun bans Nd just red the posts here about banning AR 15s.

All Dems - of course not, but most calling for bans are Dems. Follow congressional news and you will see who in congress wants bans.

Doug Larson 2 months ago

Interesting. The 1st story is about Governor Brown banning weapons on school grounds. So that's a state thing. The 2nd story was about Biden wanting to limit the size of magazines, but not the gun itself. But the 3rd story did mention one guy who wants to ban assult rifles. I wouldnt worry too much about it tho. Nobody is going to take away our guns. I've never worried about it.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

I can’t do all the research for you. That was just a quick smattering and I see you ignored Clinton´s call for Australia style gun control.

There are calls to bring back Clinton´s assault rifle ban.

Obviously the reason you aren’t worried is because you haven’t been paying attention.

But you made my day, I’ve now met the only person who doesn’t realize that in light of the recent mass shootings Dems re calling for a gun ban. Wow, how is that rock?

Doug Larson 2 months ago

I just looked again. I guess I don't see what you are referencing about Clinton. She's no longer in politics so I'm not sure what she could do anyway. I don't have a rock. Thanks for the links.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Your inability to research issues is embarrassing. Clinton is relevant because she is a dem and until just a year ago represented the Dem party. You said you don’t see Dems calling for gun bans. I showed you links, I told you about Clinton and now I will share a video with you.

You’re on your own from this point. Live in denial that Dems want to ban guns if you want.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Attadking the NRA won’t stop gun violence but demanding Law enforcement agencies do their jobs might.

Steve Hicks 2 months ago

LOL. The clockwork wooden men always do their pre-programmed, unchangeable, predictable, little dance when their big cuckoo sounds off.

But they evidently also moonlight for the gun-lobby cuckoos. They're all here, dancing their predictable little dance as fast as they can, over and over.

Cuckoo !! Cuckoo !!

Andrew Applegarth 2 months ago

When you must exploit emotional distress, rage, and frustration to advance your position, knowing that it will fail should clearer heads be allowed to prevail, you are not some noble crusader. You are nothing more than a snake oil salesman trying to stay ahead of those who realize what you're really selling. The fact that the people you wish to oppress rise up and oppose you every time you try to steal their rights and control them is not a negative on them, for their fight to preserve their life and liberty is a noble crusade. Sadly it is one that your fragile ego cannot accept, causing you to lash out with idiotic comments like this one.

Bob Summers 2 months ago

I wonder why the Choom gang leader didn't make all the enlightened critical thinkers wildest "gun kontrol" dreams come true when they had the Senate, and the House locked up?

Greg Cooper 2 months ago

OK, all you who stand so strongly for weapon laissez faire, it's time you took your ideology in hand and write letters to the remaining students and parents of the dead ones at the schools where massacres occurred. You tell them why their friends and children are dead, without using Andrew's idea of emotional distress. Do it, people, because you might be able to tell them why their friends and children had to die because it's not a good idea to make sure those who have guns are competent in using them, or can make rational decisions about their use. And, then, write letters to your Congress people telling them to stand strong on gun laws that contribute to kids being wiped out in schools. Go ahead, do it.

If you can't, then shut the hell up when it comes time to have rational discourse about human life and its dignity and usefulness. Both sides of the argument. Because if you're not a part of the solution you're part of the problem. The hippies weren't totally wrong.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Lies, straw man arguments and more lies. That sums up up your post.

No one here has advocated for weapon liaisez faire. You’d hve to be a complete moron not to want a reasonable system and reasonable regulation that protects the 2nd amendment while attempting to keep guns out of criminals and the mentally ill.

The children are dead because law enforcement failed them. The killer was reported to the FBI but they took no action to stop him.

The children are dead because even though we know schools are a target for violence there wasn’t a security system in place to protect them.

I do want Congress to stand strong in protecting our rights. Don’t want it to be. Right then amend the Constitution.

So angry man calling for solutions - what is the new law that would have stopped the murders? If you don’t have one the take your own advice and be quiet.

Greg Cooper 2 months ago

Brock, I didn't "lie" about anything. I characterized the gun laws as I, and the kids' parents who have had the heart to talk about it, do. Law enforcement failed them because, except for the latest debacle, they have little on which to stand when trying to stop this useless gun violence. And I DO NOT KNOW what the solution is, but I believe strongly that there is something we can do that is better than what is NOT happening now. And I don't think those advocating for the 2nd amendment are morons, but I do believe that we, as a nation, are cowed by a group that has made too many of us believe that sensible, workable gun safety laws are an infringement on their rights. It's not my job, nor my expertise, to draft laws that will in any way adequately address the issue, but my representatives in Topeka and Washington. I'm angry, yes, but angry that this goes on and on and we still have no real conversation about it. And it still is my contention that neither you nor any of the well-known posters here can address those people directly, other than with "thoughts and prayers". I don't hate guns. I don't hate those who, in my opinion, are stuck on arguments that don't address the problems of gun massacres. Believe it or not, I generally respect your opinions in particular, but I can not stand still for the lack of effort this country puts into trying to make our kids and adults safer. And I believe we, all of us, on both sides of the issue, can do this.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Perhaps I misunderstood, but who here stands strongly for no regulation? I’ve not heard anyone advocate for the complete deregulation of guns.

Not all laws are infringement of our right to bear arms but many that have been proposed are not only unconstitutional but worthless.

It is easy to demonize the NRA and it’s members, but it does nothing to stop gun violence. There are new laws that I will vehemently oppose but there are new laws that will help stop gun violence that I will support. So why keep focusing on laws that I and others will oppose instead of those that we can all support.

Enforce the laws on the books, punish severely those who violate gun laws. Increase the penalties for felons illegally possessing guns, fund the background database to ensure that the mentally ill are flagged, make health professionals report those they are treating for mental illness to it and put security in schools.

Bob Smith 2 months ago

Leave us try enforcing the laws that already exist before charging off into the woods and passing more feel-good laws that are ineffective. BTW, you can shut the hell up yourself.

Justin Hoffman 2 months ago

"Go ahead, do it" --I already called my state lawmakers asking them to stand up to my constitutional rights. While I was at it I renewed my NRA membership as well.

Andrew Applegarth 2 months ago

And there you go demonstrating exactly what I said, exploiting the grief-stricken parents in a sad attempt to publicly shame me into silence so you don't have to compete with logic and rational thought.

Louis Kannen 2 months ago

No, Bob, you guess again...the sear-group mechanism requires minimal effort to allow fully automatic functionality...what Branch and MOS describes your Military Service...??

Bob Smith 2 months ago

I was a mech infantry and then armor platoon leader. BTW, how many sear groups have to converted? Or is this something you read about on the interwebs?

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Are you suggesting you can convert from semi to full auto without machining parts?

Brandon Devlin 2 months ago

As a former 11-series myself, I'm waiting with bated breath for the explanation here.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Here is something to consider suggesting that gun control is a political football to advance an agenda.

Why is the focus on a weapon, the AR 15, that is rarely used in mass shootings? Why isn’t the focus on handguns which is the weapon used in the majority of mass shootings?

I will tell you why - Dems don’t want fun control to make us safer. They want it as a means to get re-elected. The AR 15 is a better prop to use in anti gun speeches.

Why Is the media silent on the thousands of mass shootings conducted each year in our cities? Why wasn’t there the same kind of outrage as expressed toward the FL shooting as the Mass street mass shooting?

Why because it’s bout politics.

Wake up people. Stop being manipulated and start demanding real solutions to gun violence.

Ken Lassman 2 months ago

Personally, I see the AR-15 argument as a straw dog being used as such by both sides. Where would you start, Brock? Personally I would begin with the following items:

-instead of banning research on gun violence by the CDC, explicitly fund very focused, solution-specific research on how to monitor the efficacy of various gun violence measures that are place-specific and develop testable models that could result in developing some truly outcome based solutions that also honor the concerns around the 2nd amendment but without all of the paranoia on both sides of this issue. After all, there are some real questions that could be addressed that I would think would be supported by all but the extreme fringe on both sides, such as the best ways to minimize access for those at high risk for suicide, the best ways to address the risks that come with domestic violence dynamics, etc.

-pursue legislation that closes the "Charlottesville loophole," i.e. effective waiting periods along the lines covered here: In other words it can take up to an average of 25 days for the FBI to complete a background check, but because there has been a limit on the length of time a dealer can put a hold on giving the buyer their purchased gun (3 days), thousands of criminals and mentally ill individuals (2,892 in 2015, 4,170 in 2016) have been given their gun anyway. Those lobbying against closing this loophole have argued that dealers were unfairly holding legal purchases as a way to passively withhold a gun from a legitimate buyer, but the FBI has recommended extending the waiting period to 30 days so they have the necessary time to do a full background check.

Check on the efficacy of "Red flag" laws that exist in some states and are being considered in many others, that allows law enforcement to take away guns on a temporary basis if there is a very specific risk for the individual using against others or themselves. This might have actually stopped the Florida idiot from his shooting spree, for instance.

-Having a well funded background system that is accurate, timely and has a minimum of false positives and negatives. For that matter, having adequate funding for law enforcement to be able to enforce the laws already on the books. One of the main reasons this isn't done is simply lack of staffing and time, which I think we can all agree is not a good excuse.

So let me know what you think about these starting points and feel free to add/substitute your own.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

Agree on CDC Disagree on waiting period - I’d propose funding the FBI so all can be done in 3 days. Don’t understand why some take 25 days. The red flag makes sense provided due process is afforded to the accused and penalties for those knowingly making false claims are part of it. Agree on funding the background check database. Money we have and we’ll spent.

Ken Lassman 2 months ago

Sounds like we agree on pretty much everything here, Brock. Regarding the waiting period, it will take time to get the FBI being able to do it that quickly, and with more and more of the wrong folks getting guns, what about the idea of a short term extension that will fade out as a well funded background search proves its mettle? My guess is that it will take 7-8 years to get there even with increased funding. And if everyone knows about it, then they will plan for it.

Agree on funding more well designed, outcome-and-place specific research to really get to the bottom of what works where and why? Any other areas you'd like to pursue as a means to " real solutions to gun violence?"

Steve Hicks 2 months ago

I'll Brock, with some possible modifications and caveats...those seem some commonsense suggestions we should start from.

Thanks, Ken, for adding some actual value to (this installment of) the usual "gun-debate" nonsense. I almost missed it amidst all that other, and glad I didn't.

Steve Hicks 1 month, 4 weeks ago

Of course, Brock, the debate is framed as political. And of course when it's made political, manipulation of public "opinion" (most of it parroted from political factions) becomes a destructive factor.

And I'll agree people should STOP allowing themselves to be manipulated on political questions. That is effectively the destruction of the American ideal of democracy (already suspect on other grounds): that "the will of the people" should determine government's course.

It might work for the common good with the right kind of people: but won't if people are willing (or stupid enough) to be manipulated to say they want what a faction tells them is good for them.

Consider how "pro-" and "anti-gun" political divisions came to be. Those didn't really exist when the first federal gun-laws were passed in the mid-1930s, or those in the late-1960s. In both cases, gun-law was a response to the societal danger of gun-violence.

But leadership of the NRA, a century-old hunting and gun-sports organization, was taken over by "gun-rights" activists in the late-1970s, and turned to political purposes. (In American society, and question of "rights" is by definition political.

Beginning with the federal "Firearm Owners Protection Act" of 1986 (which repealed some provisions of the "Gun Control Act" of 1968), the NRA has increasingly framed the debate as a political, rather than a safety and criminal, issue: primarily about "rights." They have been joined in politicizing the issue almost-exclusively by Republican politicians.

Your calling out "Dems" for politicizing gun issues is counter-factual.

But I'll agree with your plea for "real solutions." Since making the issue primarily "political" has most prevented real solutions, I'll also agree with your plea that people wake up, and stop being manipulated on the issue.

The wisest thing would be that people who want real solutions especially resist manipulation by those who have done the most to falsely politicize the issue for their own purposes, the N.R.A. and Republicans.

Brock Masters 2 months ago

I happened to reread the op-ed and noticed more fake news in it. They refer to the countless magazine clips. Besides demonstrating ignorance of gun parts, they suggest he had so many magazines that they couldn’t be counted. BS - the number was easily verified and counted.

Take a position but stop the lies.

Gene Douglas 2 months ago

In my experienced opinion "if you are rural and over 60 'clips' were for guns and 'magazines' were for the outhouse...except for the slick ones. The gun magazine term is a carryover from what 'lifers' used but most inductees rolled out back to the farm...and a more colloquial (these days) both terms are 100% interchangeable unless you're a 'lifer'

Bob Smith 2 months ago

A magazine contains a spring. A clip does not have a spring. Clips are used to feed rounds into a magazine. I'm not a lifer. However, I do like to use technical terms correctly.

Bob Smith 2 months ago

"...What the gun control debate sounds like to shooters, in a context most other people can understand: Say it’s become “known” that many drunk driving fatalities are caused by drunk drivers who drank whiskey. Temperance advocates would really prefer to ban all alcohol. They frequently and not without merit point to all the social problems that alcohol abuse contributes to, especially when there’s high-profile fatalities. But they don’t really have the political power to enact sweeping restrictions. Instead they latch onto the idea of banning any alcohol that is brown, because whiskey is brown, and at least it’s something. The distillers switch production to clear liquors, which still gets you just as sloshed as the brown stuff, and the ban accomplishes almost nothing except pissing off whiskey drinkers, the vast majority of whom aren’t problem drinkers. The temperance people cry foul, scream “loophole,” and demand clear liquors be banned too, hoping that those absinthe drinkers over there won’t really care if the vodka drinkers get it. The temperance folks make repeated public assurances that absinthe aficionados should fear not, since they don’t really intend to target green drink, and likewise assure beer drinkers they are fine with yellow drink. But when they think they can, they’ve pushed for limits of 5% on alcohol content of all drinks. That’s essentially what this all looks like to those of us, using the analogy, who might be whiskey enthusiasts, but who aren’t alcoholics and don’t drive drunk. We tolerate a lot of social harm in this context because most people drink. There’s an understanding that prohibition wasn’t all that successful, and that it’s not right to punish people as a whole because some misuse it. Transfer that to the gun context, and suddenly prohibition is workable, and it’s fine to blame and punish millions of gun owners and shooters for the actions of people who misuse them..."

Bob Smith 2 months ago

The headline "Time to pass gun control" sounds as if there is a single on-size fits all solution. That is disingenuous to an extreme degrees.

Bob Summers 2 months ago

With all do respect, the sooner folk not under the influence realize the type of humans they are dealing with, the sooner breath will be saved dealing with these people.

The Bible, the Constitution, were all developed to deal with the human with the Liberal genetic condition.

Bob Summers 2 months ago

Ban the congenital Liberal from access to firearms.

Save lives.

Ken Lassman 2 months ago

I finally got it: you really ARE one of those Russian bots that everyone is talking about!

Marc Wilborn 2 months ago

Very good piece on the UT shooting in the 60's. Everyone should read it. Just tells the story of one person involved in maybe the real first well-known campus/school shooting.

Steve Hicks 2 months ago

Thanks for that link, Marc. Great writing, and great exposition of the effect of a single bullet on a person's life, all their life.

Toward the end of the piece, it tells about Claire's returning to Austin to testify against "gun-rights" legislators' second try for a "campus-carry" law in Texas. That law passed anyway.

Claire's outrage, that it was a "grotesque insult" the law should go into effect on the day of the 50th anniversary of that first American school-shooting, seems right on.

Marc Wilborn 2 months ago

Your welcome, Steve.

The part of the story that struck home to me was the realization by the victim that the shooter most likely target her unborn child which illuminates the true evil these shooters hold in their hearts. Willfully shooting at groups of people up close requires something truly terrible that may be bigger than any one of us. I personally believe that these horrible acts will continue until we have meaningful mental health reform which will require tightening our belts somewhere else.

Steve Hicks 2 months ago

You've put your finger on probably the two major causes for shootings, "evil" and "mental health."

Whitman certainly acted in evil, as you say, targeting a pregnant woman's belly. There may have also been mental issues. He wrote about his overwhelming spells of violent rage which he couldn't understand, and had seen doctors (including a psychiatrist) about. In his suicide note he asked that his brain be autopsied. (A tumor was found, but it was never decided if it was the cause of his rage.)

Whitman couldn't understand why he did it, and neither could anyone else. In almost every way, before the Tower murders, to everyone's observation Whitman had always been a model "good guy:" a polite and "never angry" young man, religious, of genius IQ, the youngest Eagle Scout in America, a Marine who'd saved another Marine's life by lifting a jeep off him.

I doubt we'll ever understand why Whitman became a mass-shooter. But he certainly gives the lie to the tired wheeze still mindlessly parroted by N.R.A. puppets, that "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun."

Andrew Applegarth 2 months ago

I don't understand how this "gives the lie" to "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." From the accounts I have read, the Texas Sniper continued to fire until two police officers (good guys with guns) shot him dead. Further, who can say how many more might have ended up dead had not other students (good guys) retrieved rifles (with guns) and returned fire to disrupt his killing spree.

No, the Texas Sniper serves as early proof that unarmed victims are defenseless against such a predator and only armed resistance can ensure an end to the killing.

Richard Heckler 2 months ago

The GOP which is controlled by very radical right wing money aka ALEC will do nothing about deregulated gun sales. Nothing will change.

This is why the loud voices for replacing all laws with a few new regulations need to stay active and loud. The politicans will say anything to shut americans up and in reality are only waiting for this sitaution to run out of steam.

The news media must stay on top of this matter. Assault weapons must be taken off the retail market, the black market and not allowed in gun shows.

Military and law enforcement weapons when retired MUST be melted down and perhaps brought back as picinic tables.

Arming teachers is shallow thinking. Security officers are acceptable HOWEVER they cannot stop an action if they don't when a shooting is going to take place or where it will take place.

Bob Smith 2 months ago

The Broward cowards could hear the sound of gunfire in the school and they kept themselves safe outside. You cannot rely on the police to protect you.

Bob Smith 2 months ago

"...Common sense would dictate that Congress act to implement sensible gun control legislation, including a ban on weapons like the AR-15 and high capacity magazines that hold 30 rounds..." No common sense in that statement. There are millions of AR-type rifles in America that will never be used in a crime. Is collective punishment really the direction you want to take this?

Bob Summers 2 months ago

The Pilgrims left Europe because of the Liberal human. The Constitution was put together because of the irrational Liberal ones. The Second Amendment was created because of the Liberal ones in government.

In the books of the Bible. What type of people do you think were spoke of?...Liberals.

Heck. Evan Cain, a Liberal, killed his brother Abel out of fit of jealousy.

People out the Liberal genetic condition need to realize what they are dealing with.

Using non Liberal "common sense" is as pointless. They know no other way to reason.

Steve Hicks 1 month, 4 weeks ago

Bob, the Bible is God's word, not Bob's word.

I'd advise you not to re-formulate the Bible for your political tastes. There are consequences.

Bob Smith 1 month, 3 weeks ago

Pope Steve issues another papal bull.

Steve Hicks 1 month, 3 weeks ago

Bob, the life-and-death point is that no human being has standing to twist what God says to their purpose: not me, not you.

There are ultimate consequences for falsifying what He says, according to the Writer of the Bible.

I'd solemnly and STRONGLY urge you to re-think doing so.

Bob Smith 2 months ago

Laurence Tribe wins the doofus of the week award. "... The AR-15 is a semi-automatic RIFLE. Its bullets fly at over 2,000 mph. It easily fires over 10 rounds PER SECOND. Its only purpose is to rip human beings apart and leave them dead. Nobody needs it for defense or for sport. It should be BANNED..."

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