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Gun Crazy

Posted on Jan 11, 2011
Flickr / M Glasgow (CC-BY)

By Eugene Robinson

We may not be sure that the bloodbath in Tucson had anything to do with politics, but we know it had everything to do with our nation’s insane refusal to impose reasonable controls on guns.

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Specifically, the rampage had everything to do with a 9mm semiautomatic Glock pistol—a sleek, efficient killing machine that our lax gun laws allowed an unstable young man to purchase, carry anywhere he wanted and ultimately use to shoot Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in the head. The weapon also was used to shoot 19 bystanders, killing six of them, including a federal judge and a 9-year-old girl.

The accused gunman, 22-year-old Jared Lee Loughner, appears to be deranged. But this fact does not automatically absolve the politicians, partisan activists and professional loudmouths who spew apocalyptic anti-government rhetoric full of violent imagery. Certainly only someone “unbalanced” would spray a crowd with deadly gunfire. Only someone on the fringe—of society, of sanity—might conceivably hear a slogan such as “Don’t retreat, instead—reload!” and think it not a stirring political metaphor but a direct order.

Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik, in whose jurisdiction the massacre took place, said that “the rhetoric about hatred, about mistrust of government, about paranoia of how government operates” has an “impact on people ... who are unbalanced personalities to begin with.”

But Loughner has so far declined to talk to authorities. At this point, it is impossible to know whether he was thinking about white-hot political discourse or listening to imaginary transmissions from outer space.


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We do know, however, that Loughner reportedly had a history of drug use and bizarre behavior. Students and a teacher at a community college that Loughner briefly attended found him so erratic, confused, menacing and potentially violent that they convinced college authorities to bar him from campus pending a psychiatric exam.

Yet on Nov. 30 he was able to walk into Sportsman’s Warehouse in Tucson and purchase the weapon that authorities allege was used in Saturday’s rampage. He apparently also bought extra magazines loaded with ammunition.

To buy the gun, Loughner was required to pass a federal background check—and he did, a store manager told reporters. It is against federal law to sell a gun to someone who is mentally ill, but there is no indication that Loughner was ever officially deemed to suffer from mental illness. Even if he had been, there is a good chance that his name would not have been properly entered in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

According to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, “about 80 percent to 90 percent of disqualifying mental health records” are not in the background-check database. Some states simply don’t bother to submit the information; others do so haphazardly. Arizona is neither the best nor the worst on this score.

In other respects, however, Arizona is one of the most lenient states in the country when it comes to gun ownership. It is one of only three states—along with Alaska and Vermont—that allow individuals to carry concealed handguns without a permit. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano vetoed “concealed carry” legislation when she was Arizona’s governor. Her successor, Gov. Jan Brewer, signed the measure into law last year.

Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Campaign, said in a statement that “if Congress had not allowed the ‘Assault Weapons Ban’ to expire in 2004, the shooter [Loughner] would only have been able to get off 10 rounds without reloading. Instead, he was able to fire at least 20 rounds from his 30-round clip.”

The specifics of state and federal gun laws matter greatly—lives are at stake—but we really need to look at the bigger picture. The Second Amendment is a fact of life. But even recent Supreme Court rulings have left the door open to effective gun control measures.

We must recognize the obvious distinction between rifles, shotguns and target pistols used for sport, on the one hand, and semiautomatic handguns designed for killing people on the other. We must decide that allowing anyone to carry a concealed weapon, no questions asked, is just crazy. And for heaven’s sake, we must demand that laws designed to keep guns out of the hands of lunatics be enforced.

Giffords is a supporter of responsible gun ownership. If we force our elected officials to act responsibly, the next senseless massacre just might be prevented.

Eugene Robinson’s e-mail address is eugenerobinson(at)
© 2011, Washington Post Writers Group

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By Inherit The Wind, January 16, 2011 at 10:42 pm Link to this comment


Now you are engaging in sophistry:


While you believe the Declaration of Independence is meaningless to some, many believe it was the starting point from which all other legal dialogue concerning the United States began.

A declaration in legalese is a statement unsupported by proof which carries legal weight.  In courts a ‘declaration’ is on the record, hardly meaningless.

This is simply silly.
1) I didn’t say the DOI is meaningless in general—I said it’s meaningless UNDER THE LAW.
2) A “declaration” made in legal (ie court) terms is completely different animal to the DOI.
3) The DOI was written over 20 years before the Constitution, and 25 years before the Constitution became the Law of the USA.  Therefore it has no legal standing.
4) The DOI was written to establish a basis for separation from Britain.  The authors knew it had no LEGAL standing and the by signing they were committing a capital offense: High Treason.  They felt they had a moral justification for what they did.  But how do you know? Nelson Mandela felt he had a moral justification for what he did and went to jail for it.  But so did Adolph Hitler.  Surely both of us agree that Mandela is a Hero of epic proportions and Hitler is a villain of epic proportions.  Both committed treason.  One is a man I admire greatly (and sadly won’t be with us much longer), the other I wouldn’t piss on if he was on fire.

I said it before: Treason can never be justified. Unless you win

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By BR549, January 16, 2011 at 2:06 pm Link to this comment


The British would have dismissed the colonies activities as insurrection from “transient causes”, as well, only had they asked the colonists involved, we would have considered it freedom fighting and a noble cause. It depends upon who you ask. The fact is, however, that the Supreme Court has not always sided solely with the Constitution as the legal entity and it has veered over the lines of definition as it had seen fit at the time.

(From the Declaration): “Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.”

I would suggest that if Thomas Jefferson had read your commentary and interpretations, he’d have taken you out behind the barn for deciding that these two documents stand separately. While Congress is authorized “To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions”, it is authorized to do so as long as it has abided by the tenets of the Declaration; hence all that ‘troublesome’ drivel about tyranny and despotism.

Saying that “governments should not be changed for light and transient causes” is an enormous realization during the writing of this document. The entire quote (Prudence) clearly demonstrates the conflict about who is defining the insurrection and who is crying tyranny, and all the Constitution is stating is that it does have the authority to address insurrection. It is the people who
ultimately decide how that is defined and where prudence should be exercised, not the Congress.

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By bob, January 16, 2011 at 1:35 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

with the release of the slaves the nra was born, out of paranoid white peoples fear
of retribution from freed slaves… the same thing happend in with the
release of mandela.. whites who had for 300 years ripped the souls of black
people apart…felt the need to arm themselves after they gained their freedom.
whites have held on to this fear for 200 years in america.. when it became
possible for blacks to own guns, whites started to arm themselves in greater
numbers…. so the bottom line is = whites fear blacks- so they arm themselves for
what they think will happen in the future..

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By PatrickHenry, January 16, 2011 at 11:47 am Link to this comment


While you believe the Declaration of Independence is meaningless to some, many believe it was the starting point from which all other legal dialogue concerning the United States began.

A declaration in legalese is a statement unsupported by proof which carries legal weight.  In courts a ‘declaration’ is on the record, hardly meaningless.

History is rife with examples of how firearms have protected Blacks and other minorities against the ‘mob’.  It is too bad more people were not armed, many injustices could have been avoided.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 16, 2011 at 10:57 am Link to this comment

You make the common mistake: You assume and cite the Declaration of Independence as if it had legal standing. It does not.  Show me where the Constitution, enabling legislation or court decisions cite the DOI as a LEGAL basis for..anything.

Here’s what the Constitution says about insurrection:

“To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;”

“No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.”

“The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.”

Funny.  It all seems to be about SUPPRESSING insurrection, not honoring with a valid legal status.

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By BR549, January 16, 2011 at 1:57 am Link to this comment

“But the Constitution doesn’t tell us that we have the right to keep and bear arms in order to have armed insurrection in case we don’t like the government.”

If you read the Federalist Papers, you could see how the meaning would still include that, even though no one wanted to say it. That was why all the commotion about the wording. At the very least, the discussion specifically addressed the problems with a government that was not of the people, for the people, and by the people.

That was why I had to spell it out for you. Too many people labor under the misconception that the militia was supposed to be something like our present day National Guard or that all the arms were supposed to be stored in some local armory. If that were the case, the deer population would have been far higher.

As I had stated earlier, it was Pennsylvania and Vermont that nearly pulled out of the process altogether, their convictions were so strong on this issue. And again, Virginia and New Hampshire weren’t too far behind. The problem comes in that without understanding the these accounts, we might erroneously be led to believe that the 2nd Amendment was to be understood through a modern
day interpretation. Looking back at the Federalist Papers and other related accounts, it was clearly NOT the case. Pennsylvania had no intention of continuing the dialogue as long as the meaning limited a man’s right, yes a right to carry arms.

So, it’s easy for people to sit back and make arm chair analyses about the meaning of the 2nd, as long as they keep trying to guess what the intent was and wonder about “some seemingly errant comma”, but the intent was right there all along. So, go ahead and try to second guess the Federalist papers, too. I’m sure you’ll find a following to support you.

As far as your statement, “But the Constitution doesn’t tell us that we have the right to keep and bear arms in order to have armed insurrection in case we don’t like the government.  And, despite the fiery language you cited, it was CLEAR the founders did NOT want there to a “right” of armed insurrection when we don’t like the government—or that would have been included,” ...... NO?, try looking at the entire second paragraph at the Declaration of Independence; the second sentence in particular.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,[72] that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

So, taking into account sentence #3, “Prudence….” etc, exactly what part of authorizing the throwing off a despotic government is it that you don’t seem to understand?

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By Inherit The Wind, January 15, 2011 at 1:34 pm Link to this comment

The Declaration of Independence is just that.  It is a document with no, repeat, NO force of Law.  In the legal sense of the Constitution, IT IS MEANINGLESS!

It was a declaration. It was replaced by the Articles of Confederation, which was replaced the the Constitution.

Besides, nobody wants to answer the question: Who gets to decide that armed insurrection is justified?

Armed insurrection is NEVER justified. There is no exception.  Except one:  Unless you win.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 15, 2011 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment

I knew as soon as the insulting name appeared that BR had NO CLUE what I was talking about.

Yes, “Intent” is important.  But if it’s not IN the Constitution, a citation cannot be used to explain the Constitution when that citation blatantly contradicts it.

Here is the ONE quote you produced that is not in conflict with what was RATIFIED in the Bill of Rights:

“What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty .... Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins.”
—Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts, spoken during floor debate over the Second Amendment, I Annals of Congress at 750, August 17, 1789”

You’ll notice that Gerry said virtually THE SAME DAMN THING I said—a Peoples’ Army versus a professional one.

But the Constitution doesn’t tell us that we have the right to keep and bear arms in order to have armed insurrection in case we don’t like the government.  And, despite the fiery language you cited, it was CLEAR the founders did NOT want there to a “right” of armed insurrection when we don’t like the government—or that would have been included. 

Of course, the “right” to armed insurrection when we don’t like the government would, be an ideal defense for Loughner—he didn’t like the Judge or the Congresswoman—the government, so he engaged in armed insurrection against them.  That fact that he’s a majority of one doesn’t matter because, in an armed insurrection, votes don’t matter, just who has the most guns does.  So it’s EASY for a small, well-trained minority to override the will of the majority in their personal quest for “freedom”.

Yeah, that’s really gonna fly as a defense for him, isn’t it.

The founding fathers were a hell of a lot smarter than that.  And that’s why all the NRA citations don’t mean shit, Mr. Natural!

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By PatrickHenry, January 15, 2011 at 1:26 pm Link to this comment

BR549, good post, you highlighted the spirit and intent of creation of the 2nd amendment.

“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.”

As your post points out, it was the intent and spirit of the 2nd amendment which framers determined that all citizens had the right (not privilege) to keep and bear arms. 

Many modern day intepretations take a more literal approach in an attempt to parse words and meanings.  In that regard, my local hunt club could be considered a ‘militia’ since the Constitution does not define what a well regulated militia is.

Lets not forget that “Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it.

Try to take down a tyranny or despotic government without arms, the United States foreign policy wouldn’t hear of it.

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By drbhelthi, January 15, 2011 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

The element of gun-crazy that concerns me is last month´s event in Seattle.  The 1st degree murder of the homeless, indigenous, 50-yr-old man in Seattle, by mentally-deranged Seattle Police Officer Ian Birk.  When a policeman is provoked by a homeless-type, perhaps because of his substandard appearance, who only crossed the street, and was doing nothing offensive, the policeman´s thoughts are deranged.  A person with deranged thoughts is deranged, and should not be a policeman.

Perhaps not all bloggers are aware that the Tucson assassination took out two Patriotic Americans of the Jewish belief, who would not be encumbered by NAZI-type dishonesty, regardless of political party affiliation.  Mrs. Giffords will probably recover, but functionally,  she has been “taken out.”  U.S. District Court Judge John Roll had adjudicated, declared unconstitutional and nullified a clause in the Brady Law, which the current U.S. administration needs in order to further limit gun sales.  Judge Roll was to meet with Congressperson Giffords to discuss the unwieldy court caseload that had stacked up, regarding the border with Mexico.

The assassin murdered innocent bystanders, in order to distract from the two targets of the assassination.  Which, with other info will support an insanity plea.  All by a looney-type who infiltrated the inner circle.  The NAZI element of the CIA has expertise in locating such loonies, and seducing them into cooperation. 

Pelosi has termed the event to be a “tragic accident”.  This suggests that a cover-up is already underway.  When translated, it suggests that the current administration is involved, and the event will presently be neutralized by the pimp news media.  Obama´s turning the event into a pep-rally for re-election tends to support the idea.

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By BR549, January 15, 2011 at 11:54 am Link to this comment

Break the wind,

I think Richard Henry Lee saw you coming when he wrote this first excerpt (second sentence). If this doesn’t convey to you what the framers had intended, I don’t know what will. Pennsylvania and Vermont were so adamant about this issue that they almost pulled out altogether, with Virginia and New Hampshire not far behind them.


“Whereas, to preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them; nor does it follow from this, that all promiscuously must go into actual service on every occasion. The mind that aims at a select militia, must be influenced by a truly anti-republican principle; and when we see many men
disposed to practice upon it, whenever they can prevail, no wonder true republicans are for carefully guarding against it.”
—Richard Henry Lee, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788.

“I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials.”
— George Mason, in Debates in Virginia Convention on Ratification of the Constitution, Elliot, Vol. 3, June 16, 1788

“Whereas civil-rulers, not having their duty to the people duly before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as military forces, which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow citizens, the people are confirmed by the article in their right to keep and bear their private arms.”
—Tench Coxe, in Remarks on the First Part of the Amendments to the Federal Constitution

“The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed.”
—Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist Papers at 184-188

“[The Constitution preserves] the advantage of being armed which Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation…(where) the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.”
—James Madison, The Federalist Papers, No. 46

“No Free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.”
—Thomas Jefferson, Proposal Virginia Constitution, 1 T. Jefferson Papers,
334,[C.J. Boyd, Ed., 1950]

“What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty .... Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins.”
—Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts, spoken during floor debate over the Second Amendment, I Annals of Congress at 750, August 17, 1789

” ... to disarm the people - that was the best and most effectual way to enslave them.”
—George Mason, 3 Elliot, Debates at 380

” ... but if circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude, that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people, while there is a large body of citizens, little if at all inferior to them in discipline and use of arms, who stand ready to defend their rights ...”
—Alexander Hamilton speaking of standing armies in Federalist 29

“The great object is, that every man be armed ... Every one who is able may have a gun.”
—Patrick Henry, Elliot, p.3:386

“The people are not to be disarmed of their weapons. They are left in full possession of them.”
—Zacharia Johnson, delegate to Virginia Ratifying Convention, Elliot, 3:645-6

” ... most attractive to Americans, the possession of arms is the distinction between a freeman and a slave, it being the ultimate means by which freedom was to be preserved.”
—James Burgh, 18th century English Libertarian writer, Shalhope, The Ideological Origins of the Second Amendment, p.604

“And that the said Constitution be never construed to authorize Congress ... to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms…. “
—Samuel Adams

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By Inherit The Wind, January 15, 2011 at 9:18 am Link to this comment

Again, that LAST part of the 2nd Amendment is the part that counts.

Really?  And who are you to decide that a key phrase in the Constitution can just be ignored?  If you think you can just do that, then that tells me you understand NOTHING about the ENTIRE Constitution!

What is “important” in the Constitution is defined by two things, and two things only:

1) The Text, as modified in the only allowable fashion—by Amendment.

2) The interpretation by the Federal Judiciary of that text.

We don’t each personally get to interpret the Constitution as we like.  If we try, we then find ourselves in the courts, defending that position.

Sadly, #2 means that when presidents appoint true anti-Constitutionalists like Scalia, Thomas, Alito and Roberts, we must suffer through times where absurd interpretations are made, but that’s a debate for another thread.

The 2nd is unique in that it is the only article of the Bill of Rights that justifies its own existence.  The authors thought that it was SO important to tell us down the ages what they were doing here, they actually GAVE us the reason:

“A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state…”

It doesn’t say “In order to prevent tyranny and be able to rise up and rebel against that tyranny…”

It doesn’t say “In order to be able do defend ones person and property…”

It doesn’t say “In order to provide food, fend off predators, hostile Indians, and rebellious slaves…”

No, it speaks about a “well-regulated militia”, a state-based volunteer army that can be mustered at a moment’s notice…exactly like today’s National Guard.  And it argues that such a citizen-based volunteer army IS the basis of a free state, rather than a professional army, trained, paid, and loyal solely to those in power.

None of this speaks to the “right” of rebellion.  The Founding Fathers intended their document to make such rebellion unnecessary—change the document and the rules instead.

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By BR549, January 14, 2011 at 10:10 pm Link to this comment


“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.”

The problem with this statement is that the concept of the militia has been forced out of our culture as our country has become overrun with federalist doctrine. The Feds want us to believe that IT has taken over the functions of the militia, when nothing could be further from the truth. The Feds, or at least that continual contingent of politicians who knowingly misinterpret the Constitution to suit some private end, keep avoiding the fact that the subject of the sentence, “the right”, shall not be infringed.

Nowhere in the Constitution does it say anything about registration or concealed vs. open carry. Nowhere. Someone brought up the issue of the “armory” in one discussion. That was where the cannon and the backstock of higher quality firearms were stored, indeed, if the local governor or magistrate didn’t ensure the purchase of decent armament and his troops couldn’t deter an offensive, well, he wouldn’t governor much longer. But all that aside, the farmers still had their pistols and rifles and went back to their farms to be able to shoot deer and protect themselves from Indian and other raiding parties. Again, that LAST part of the 2nd Amendment is the part that counts.

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By PatrickHenry, January 14, 2011 at 8:12 pm Link to this comment


In Prince George’s county, MD, there have been 13 murders as of January 13.

I tend to agree with you about the shitty law enforcement, hence my ownership of many guns.

Police can’t be everywhere and natural and man made disasters occur. 

Gun ownership is a right, not a privlege….or so the founders thought.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 14, 2011 at 7:33 pm Link to this comment

PatrickHenry, January 14 at 11:26 pm Link to this comment

Inherit, I live in Maryland which has 3 million less residents but significantly more murders than NJ with guns.

Maryland gun laws are soome of the most strict in the nation.

What does that tell you?

That Maryland has some of the shittiest law enforcement in the nation? 
(maybe the police are not an effective deterrent?)

New Jersey’s gun laws are also extremely strict.

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By BR549, January 14, 2011 at 7:03 pm Link to this comment

Breaking the Wind,

Data are great aren’t they; ..... depending on how you want to contort them. The fact is that for the period you mentioned, the crime rate decreased across the country in general (depending on whose data you review), for reasons people are still trying to figure out, but it certainly wasn’t solely because of gun control. Was gun control a factor in some cases? Sure, I can’t deny that, but gun control could in no way address the concurrent social problems that caused the rise in violence in the first place. Expecting gun control to solve the rate of inflicted violence is like putting a band-aid on a broken leg. Trends in violence are a symptom of a culture and a system in trouble; in this case, it the collective resentments of disenfranchised citizens who have lost their connection with a larger sense of purpose. It is because of gross social mismanagement by those who had misrepresented themselves as being able to solve our country’s problems, corruption, and avarice.

That’s why it is so important to consider so many more possibilities before we run off and pull some liberal version of “Mission Accomplished”.

When you take the time to investigate the import and export figures on firearms for the US, we clearly have a problem and it starts with the arms business at the very top, not just in someone’s household. It is further exacerbated by legislators who have allowed Israel to have access to nuclear material since the ‘50s, and all those countries who we have given weapons to, China included (thanks to Clinton). Rumsfeld gave Saddam Hussein the foundation for SARIN gas and then we wonder when the guy goes bonkers with it against the Kurds. We reap what we sow.

The Mexican citizens aren’t allowed to own firearms yet the Germans are keeping the cartels armed with state of the art hardware. What was the figure? 35,000 citizens killed down there? Exactly what don’t you understand about this picture? The NRA reports 4.3 million members, many of whom have a lot more than one firearm. These are well respected, rational, loyal and patriotic Americans who do understand the oath they took and why it is still important to have the 2nd Amendment. They know how to handle firearms and have the discretion to use them, yet myopic libtards get all wigged out at the sight of a 22 in the back of a farm truck.

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By PatrickHenry, January 14, 2011 at 6:26 pm Link to this comment

Inherit, I live in Maryland which has 3 million less residents but significantly more murders than NJ with guns.

Maryland gun laws are soome of the most strict in the nation.

What does that tell you?

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By drbhelthi, January 14, 2011 at 12:11 pm Link to this comment

Where is the adult male seen with Jared Lee Loughner
just prior to his demonstration of practiced prowess
with a Glock w/“banana” clip?  Two targets, but with
numerous innocent victims to distract, and label the
event as random, while supporting a lunacy plea?

Careful planning and timing was required for this
horrific event, which was done by an adult, experienced
in planning assassinations.  The “looney” was very
carefully selected to pull the trigger, and was “well-
known” by the planning agent.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 14, 2011 at 7:41 am Link to this comment

The fact is that the states with the safest records are those with the least laws. New Jersey is just one case in point of the exact opposite.

Case in point: BR’s numbers are BS.  In fact, while the NJ murder rate DID rise as the economy went in the dumper for years on end, it spiked at 7.4/100k in 1973 and at 7.3 in 1981, HAS STEADILY AND CONSISTENTLY DECREASED SINCE THEN! In fact, for 2009, the most recent year on record, the murder rate was 3.7/100k—and we didn’t remove those gun laws!

In fact, the OVERALL crime index in NJ in 1966 is statistically identical to that in 2009, spiking in 1980.  30 years later, its about 1/3 of what it was then.

Plus to add an even higher BS to BR’s numbers—between 1966 and 1968, ALL crimes jumped, including vehicle theft and burglary, neither crime having any connection to illegal guns by crooks.


It’s fun to say “Gun control causes crime” but there’s NO statistical evidence to support that.

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By simon, January 13, 2011 at 8:31 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I live in the UK and can assure you that our gun ban
did not result in more shootings or home invasions. UK
handguns were used for target practice if you shot a
burgler it would be considered unreasonable force and
you would be locked up

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By Dale Headley, January 13, 2011 at 6:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Here’s a history lesson:

  When the Revolutionary War started, the British imposed laws designed to
prevent the forming of militias to oppose them.  When the Articles of
Confederation were instituted, they included the right of citizens to own guns
militia, should one be needed.
  When the Constitution was first written, that right was omitted. But due to
widespread distrust of centralized federal government, many, especially in the
smaller states, insisted that it be included, along with a number of rights they
had enjoyed under the A of C.  The framers obliged by tacking on the Bill of
Rights; but they left out the militia clause because it was assumed to be the
case by all Americans. 
    Most people are aware of this, but what they may not know is that, in order
to be brief, the framers shortened the text of the laws they retained from the A
of C.  As a result, the 2nd Amendment was unanimously understood to refer, as
it implies in the “well-regulated militia” clause, which the gun nuts never
mention, that weapons would be stored in a common armory.  There is
NOTHING in the Constitution that gives individual citizens the right to walk
around with handguns on their hips, or hidden on their persons.  For many
decades, there was little private gun ownership beyond rifles needed for
hunting.  Only with the coming of the western movies did it occur to Americans
that they, too, could be big, brave cowboys who could shoot down their
  Thanks to the right wing Supreme Court, which chose to ignore original
intent and instead create a right they like, EVERY American citizen can now
successfully challenge gun laws passed by local governments and police.  Police
departments, especially in large cities, can no longer use suspected handgun
possession as an excuse to raid someone’s home - even a known gang
member.  But, of course, the NRA has always been anti-police - a fact well-
kbown by all the police chiefs and mayors in big cities.

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By Dale Headley, January 13, 2011 at 5:44 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Someone among those defending gun ownership and gun-carrying should
attempt to answer the question that Charlton Heston so clumsily and unwisely
tried to answer when asked by Michael Moore, “Why do you think there are
more deaths from handguns in the U.S. than the rest of the world combined? 
Heston’s answer revealed much: most of the gun nuts in this country, along
with being cowboy wannabes, is that they, like Heston, are intensely racist. 
Also, they are manifestly cowards.  They believe that the n*&&#%s and wetbacks
are lurking outside their homes waiting to attack.  I grew up in South Central
Los Angeles and it never even occurred to me that I had to fear my black and
brown neighbors.  But these yahoos do.
  The worst criminal organization in the U.S. is the NRA, which is willing to
tolerate there being no limit on the number of gun deaths as long as it enriches
their godfathers - the weapons and ammunition manufacturers.  They even
opposed restrictions on “cop-killer” bullets, knowing full well that was their
sole intended function: to kill cops.  They’re even pushing for laws that allow
people in bars to carry guns - anything to make a little more profit.  After all,
guns don’t kill people, drunks do.

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By RayLan, January 13, 2011 at 2:43 pm Link to this comment

the bitch depends on who produced the stats and so many other parameters that determine actual correlations such as proper representative sampling.

Another table I looked at shows gun-related deaths increasing with gun ownership - not surprisingly.

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By BR549, January 13, 2011 at 1:44 pm Link to this comment

Statistics are a bitch, aren’t they, especially when those figures don’t discriminate those rates relative to states where gun laws are lax. The fact is that the states with the safest records are those with the least laws. New Jersey is just one case in point of the exact opposite.

On a similar note, in the UK, after the implementation of the gun bans, the rate of non-gun related killings and home invasions increased, not surprisingly.

Sweden is no model to go by because they have similar problems that we do at the legislative level.  - (from a 2000 post) 16% of Swedish eligible voters are gun owners (900,000)
Automatics are allowed in a few cases, but overall, the system is illogical and
burdensome. The biggest threat is from lawmakers trying to emulate the control in nearby communist countries. Since lawmakers are less likely to comprise a part of the actual “working” population, they are more eager to pass these restrictive laws in the first place.Also this discussion:

My ex-wife used to go ballistic because I had a locked and unloaded 9mm in the closet with the ammo in another room, but that wasn’t good enough. The mere sight of a toy gun in the hands of my two boys was enough to have her start visceralizing her own mortality as she went into her typical state of liberal hyperventilation. She was a dyed in the wool Clinton supporter, totally beyond the point of any logic. I said to her, if you’re going to allow the kids to watch TV and you are not willing to sit and screen out all the violence, then at least allow them the ability to work out their defense strategies as youngsters so that they don’t carry that insecurity into their adulthood. After all, if kids are chastised for playing with toy guns, they’ll use sticks, spears, bats, stones, and bows and arrows to work it all out. It’s a natural process for kids to try to work this stuff out. We don’t see those “weapons” on the outlawed list, and instead
of teaching a mutual respect for boundaries, we have these leftist fruitcakes running willy-nilly thinking that outlawing guns will solve the problems. No, if they want to solve the problems, they have to point fingers at the legislature’s corrupt relationship with big business that disenfranchises individuals from their own society. Funny, but I haven’t heard that topic addressed on the Senate floor.

This was an interesting source:
Of note were the situations in Brazil, Finland, Switzerland, Mexico, New Zealand, and the UK, all with respect to the USA.

New Jersey adopted what sponsors described as “the most stringent gun law” in the nation in 1966; two years later the murder rate was up 46% and the reported robbery rate had nearly doubled.

In 1968, Hawaii imposed a series of increasingly harsh measures and its murder rate tripled from a low of 2.4 per 100,000 in 1968 to 7.2 by 1977.

In 1976, Washington, D.C. enacted one of the most restrictive gun control laws in the nation. Since then, the city’s murder rate has risen 134% while the national murder rate has dropped 2%.

Why the increases? Because the illustrious legislatures didn’t bother to include legislative corruption and citizen disenfranchisement into the equation. THAT is where the problem lies.

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By RayLan, January 13, 2011 at 2:39 am Link to this comment

Peter Knopfler
Comparing countries on gun control is deceptive - as soon as the US is included the stats are skewed towards gun-related murders decreasing with gun control.

Sweeden is a socialist country with a whole different attitude towards guns - no John Wayne fetish
Similarly Canada, where I come from, is not particularly
obsessed with self-defense -

US Gun Assisted Murders Per Capita:
3.6 per 100,000

US Total Murder Rate Per Capita:
4.2802 per 100,000 people

Canada Gun Assisted Murders Per Capita:
0.4 per 100,000

Canada Total Murder Rate Per Capita:
1.49063 per 100,000 people

Japan Gun Assisted Murders Per Capita:
0.05 per 100,000

Japan Total Murder Rate Per Capita:
0.499933 per 100,000 people

These stats are taken between 2006 and 2008. There is some margin of error but these are the basic figures / differences.

Above we see the US, a country with few gun controls having the highest amount of gun murders and overall murders. Canada, a country with much tighter gun laws sitting in the middle, and Japan, a country with only 15 legal guns in the country (for Olympics training), having extremely low gun murder rates and overall murder rates.

Cultures - and national politics matter.

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By BR549, January 13, 2011 at 12:42 am Link to this comment

PatrickHenry, January 13 at 3:01 am
“BR549, I’ve ........ never even came across anything even resembling the questionaire you posted.”

As I posted:
It’s been around for quite awhile. The issue here was about the disturbingly high number of foreign troops that have been training here and the fact that their numbers are increasing. Why would our legislature even be allowing for that to happen? Are they communists?

Youtube had clips several years ago about the takeover of Swansboro NC by the military, “supposedly” under a training exercise. They went from house to house, seizing weapons, not unlike what they did during Katrina. Swansboro was a practice drill to see what the American population would put up with. There were a number of other exercises like this, but by the time they came to Iowa a couple years ago, they cancelled it because of public outcry. Nevertheless, we are being tested. I mean, armed troops in downtown NYC standing on street corners? That’s what I saw in Honduras back in the ‘80s.

Even Charlotte Iserbyt, whom I had posted her site on a previous post, had tried to bring attention to many high ranking powers-that-be about the intentional build up of Russian Tanks in our southwest. No one was even interested. They were either too busy watching a ball game or knew about it and wished she would just go away. Iserbyt was Director of Educational Policy under the first Reagan Administration, so it’s not like she can be dismissed as some tin foil hatter.

And who else has been trying to send messages along these lines? Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, former Under Secretary of the Treasury, and Catherine Austin-Fitts, former Asst. Sec. of H.U.D. These people, along with a host of others, have been trying to warn the population about what is going on ...... but too many of the people are too busy watching American Idol to be bothered.

Anyway, long story, short; the 29 Palms questionnaire is on that link. Read that and tell me how ANYONE has a right to confiscate guns from a law abiding citizen and not violate the Constitution; 2nd and 4th Amendments.

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By Peter Knopfler, January 12, 2011 at 10:03 pm Link to this comment

What is all the Fuss about. Problem with America,
they can not learn from the mistakes of others. Oh
Yes We are Different We are American, ha ha. So all
mistakes have to be made, learn when you burn
process. South not too far, Mexico very strict gun
laws, gun laws on steriods, yes no guns is not that
nice, 51 dead 15 heads cut off same Saturday, as in
Tucson, But Mexico Gun Control, highest MURDER
CAPITAL IN THE WORLD, Because people can not defend
themselves, But OH NO do not learn from Switzerland
one example there are many, every home a gun Family
shooting centers where people learn gun shooting and
safety, very little murder compared to size of
population. Learn from Mexico AND HANG ON TO YOUR

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By PatrickHenry, January 12, 2011 at 10:01 pm Link to this comment


I’ve attended several combined arms exercises at ‘29 stumps’ during the 70’s and 80’s and never even came across anything even resembling the questionaire you posted. 

I would have to assume the local law enforcement, State law enforcement, SWAT, FBI HRT couldn’t handle the situation prior to the Marines being sent in.  SEAL team 6 (antiterror) would only be efective in a tactical SWAT mission, forget a massive violent demonstration.

I recall being deployed to Homestead AFB in Dade county Florida in early 1980 when the Cuban’s were comming ashore by the thousands.  Martial Law was declared and the Marines were called out to stop the rioting, looting and killing in and around Liberty city. 

In that capacity I could see Marines firing on the crowd.  If there were a demonstration at the mall in D.C. I could not see them firing regardless of the order given.

There are rules of using deadly force… SADWINE.

Self defence.
As a last resort.
Defense of someone elses life.
When involving national security.
Not involving national security but inherently
dangerous to others.
Escaped felon.

I don’t know what they are teaching the young Marines now days, however I tend to believe the moral compass in most is still intact despite our governmental leadership.

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By BR549, January 12, 2011 at 4:58 pm Link to this comment

Gene, Gene, Gene, here we go again.

Once again, you’ve let your starry eyed liberalism to get the better of you. Let’s forget for a moment that I too had voted for Obama, but at least I’ve had enough sense to come in out of the rain as had the majority of the populace.

This last statement of yours was priceless, “And for heaven’s sake, we must demand that laws designed to keep guns out of the hands of lunatics be enforced.” Gene, exactly WHICH lunatics are you referring to, Loughner and his kind procuring of a 9mms, or the legislature bombing the snot out of any third world country that doesn’t happen to agree with our hegemonic philosophy?

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By drbhelthi, January 12, 2011 at 4:47 pm Link to this comment

The topic of gun control reminds me of the survey
done just after our beloved John F. Kennedy Sr. was

Included in the survey, were several known criminals.

When asked if they supported gun-control laws, all
responded emphatically, yes, certainly. Astounded,
the pollsters asked why they supported gun-control

All answered with the same answer, the fewer guns in
circulation, the safer it is for us.

So it was in the 1960s, so it is in the 2010s. So it
will be in the future.  Assassins in the CIA, similar
organizations, plus crooked police, will supply guns
to other criminals whom they hire
or intimidate into doing a hit for them.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 12, 2011 at 4:33 pm Link to this comment

Peet—it’s a long shot but I think your logic is pretty sound.

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By BR549, January 12, 2011 at 4:32 pm Link to this comment

PatrickHenry, January 12 at 2:36 pm
“It is doubtful the American military would every turn its arms on the American populace. Militias are always a threat, especially during a national emergency.” The Congress has always seen the states’ militias as being potentially more loyal to their home states; that’s why the formally organized and trained militias have been forced into obscurity. It wasn’t by accident.

You need to hit the books, my friend. Check out the Marine Training Center questionnaire from TwentyNine Palms California. One of the questions addressed whether troops would fire on US civilians if ordered to. The fact that the question was even asked in the first place is abhorrent, and since it was asked in the light of foreign UN commanders giving orders for US troops to fire on their own population, THAT is even more disgusting.

“Frighteningly, among service members with less than 10 years of service, 63% agree or strongly agree with question # 46: “I would fire upon U.S. citizens who refuse or resist confiscation of firearms banned by the U.S. government.” Among new recruits almost 90% give the response: “If it’s the law and they order me to do it I guess it’s okay.”

That figure may be accurate for the Marines and Seals, but from my experience, there are many in the service who are greatly conflicted by the events of today and are just keeping their mouths shut. The globalists have being intentionally dumbing down our own population (see Charlotte Iserbyt’s work: and used that ignorance in the population so that forces outside our country could assume control of Washington ......... and look what has been happening.

Wake up, man!

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By Peetawonkus, January 12, 2011 at 3:01 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind
Yeah, well, that’s just my drinkin’ buddy spouting off.

But I think you’re missing the larger point. Which is: what happens when rich people feel threatened? The Weathermen are a good example of a doomed group that went down in flames. But this isn’t the 1960’s or 70’s. Nowadays, more than just drinking buddies are convinced we’re in the opening phase of a new civil war, but this time fought with assassinations and bombings in the streets of America. Millions and millions of people carrying guns are fine if the ruling class thinks they’re NRA members and vote the way they want them to. But what happens if some of those guns become an unstable X factor? Then the broad culture of guns would have to go in the interests of a security state. We could be one Reichstag fire away from that. Fantasy mixed with Irish whiskey? Maybe—probably. But the ruling class has already got the working class and the middle class actively participating in their own disenfranchisement—and calling it patriotism. In 10 years we might be treated to a chorus of right-wing voices calling for another look at the 2nd Amendment. With unlimited corporate money and marking machines, is it too much to assume that anything could be sold to a credulous public?

Just sayin’

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By Inherit The Wind, January 12, 2011 at 12:52 pm Link to this comment

PatrickHenry, January 12 at 2:36 pm Link to this comment

It is doubtful the American military would every turn its arms on the American populace.

I was thinking “PH is right, but I wasn’t the one who suggested that it’s dangerous if only the police and military have weapons. I’m only addressing that poster’s point.”

Then it occurred to me: The National Guard is part of the US Military as an adjunct.  And we all remember the National Guard turning its guns on Americans at Jackson State and Kent State…..

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By Maani, January 12, 2011 at 11:07 am Link to this comment


Your comment about the occasional incident in which a citizen stops a crime in progress because they are carrying a gun is absurd for three reasons.  First, such incidents are so few and far between as to be irrelevant to the conversation.  Second, for every example you can provide of that type of incident, I will provide one in which either (i) a citizen with a gun had it taken away from him/her and used against him/her, or (ii) a gun in a home was used against its owner.  Third, even had an armed citizen stopped Loughner before he got all of his shots off, this would not necessarily have forestalled a national discussion on (i) the sale of handguns to unstable people, (ii) the ability to carry a handgun into a political event, (iii) the sale of semi-automatic or automatic weapons, or (iv) the sale of “mega-clips.”


“It is doubtful the American military would every turn its arms on the American populace.  Militias are always a threat, especially during a national emergency.”

While I accept and support the intrepretation of the 2nd Amendment with respect to citizens being able to arm against the potential tyranny of the government, I think you are not being entirely realistic.  Even an arsenal of the kind kept by the most radical militias is ultimately meaningless against tanks, APCs, and some of the “new” weaponry that you probably are not even aware already exists.  It would simply be a “war of attrition,” since the militia’s ammunition and personnel would give out LONG before the military’s.


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By Steve R, January 12, 2011 at 10:52 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

You can stand on your head and whistle Yankee Doodle through your ass, but even a TOTAL BAN on all firearms will not stop a lunatic like this from committing his evil deed.

The only thing tough gun control laws accomplish, is to create a lucrative black market for criminals who want a firearm and don’t much care whether it’s legal or not.

And let’s face it - s%#t happens - and even month long psychiatric evaluations will not stop guns ending up in the hands of potentially dangerous people, even if we had the resources to do the kind of psychiatric evaluations Eugene suggests.

I’m afraid that part of the blame must rest with law enforcement, whose job it is to be aware of the potential for crime at large gatherings, and provide adequate police presence.

Where were the “legally armed” police officers when Loughner started shooting? Was there even ONE officer on patrol?

So that Loughner did not need to be stopped and disarmed by civilians, including an elderly woman without a gun….

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By PatrickHenry, January 12, 2011 at 9:36 am Link to this comment

It is doubtful the American military would every turn its arms on the American populace.

Militias are always a threat, especially during a national emergency.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 12, 2011 at 8:41 am Link to this comment

A.Benway’s typical NRA response—and he quotes a loony, William Burroughs to make his point, a man who irresponsibly playing with guns killed his wife and seems to have suffered no remorse over it.  Then Benway screams “Ad Hominen attack!”  Not on you, buddy, on your source.  I don’t look to Bill Burroughs for moral judgment, any more than I look to Ted Bundy or Timothy McVeigh!

In case Mr. Benway hasn’t noticed, nobody’s talking about taking away your AK47 or AR15, just your “right” to walk around everywhere carrying a Glock 9mm with a 33 round magazine!

And, as pointed out, if the military, with its full force of arms, is turned on the citizenry, your 9mm Glock with its 33 round magazine will be as effective as a squash racket!  So…you better make your case for your “right” to keep and carry Stinger missiles and RPGs, because if the Military comes in with Apache attack helicopters and Abrams tanks, your pop-guns that make you feel like a tough guy won’t do much.

But it makes a good slogan—until some asshole empties his 33 round mag in a peaceful crowd and grins at the thought of 6 dead, including a 9 year old.

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By RayLan, January 12, 2011 at 7:17 am Link to this comment

What’s pathalogical beyond the actual shooting is the response - not the vitiol - which has been there from day one, but that Americans are going out and buying the type of gun that Laughner used- that what consumes so many is the possibility that access to guns will be more restricted. We have been witnessing a right wing hysteria from the time of the Obama election, that their gun-totin’ bellicose, oligarchic, white male dominated America is threatened and they will do anything to restore it. Frankly Scarlet I don’t give a damn.

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By yrwehere?, January 12, 2011 at 5:23 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Are there any statistics to back-up the claim that less crimes would be committed if more people carried fire-arms? I know of no law enforcement group that supports this type of ammo either.

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By RayLan, January 12, 2011 at 12:13 am Link to this comment

The reality of a crazy man who had access to major firepower is the issue - not whether right wing rhetoric caused him to do so. His action realizes certain political rhetoric. It damns it.The fact that there is so much CYA on the right defensively arguing that their talk had nothing to do with actual violennce, illustrates that they see its danger.  You want to fantasize about everbody being armed and dangerous - well this is the real consequence- this is what that looks like. Care to re-phrase?

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By G.Anderson, January 11, 2011 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment

This is one of those unsolvable, emotional issues, that are society, cannot deal with.

Like the theory of evolution, and abortion, we will be arguing about this, long after most of use here are dead. Hopefully not as gunshot victims.

Someday, there maybe a technological solution, like doping gun poweder so it won’t fire, in designated areas, or the mass manufacture of cheap and highly effective body armor for everyone from kindergarten on up, and or personal gun detectors…

Until then, nothing will be gained in arguing about this but frustration.

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By louiss123, January 11, 2011 at 10:33 pm Link to this comment

Lets do a hypothetical thing..lets say there was a citizen there with a pistol.
Loughner opens fire and gets a few rounds off and then he is shot by the
citizen. He/she, .. would have been hailed a hero and this gun argument would
be a moot point. There was a case years ago at a restaurant (I think Alabama)a
guy came in with 2 pistols and started shooting people..a farmer had his pistol
and shot him with one round..and stopped a potential carnage. The stories are
endless of people stopping a crime or saving themselves or someone when
they are armed.
However I am typing this on Truthdig, not a conservative site. I realize most on
here cant even take a look at that.
That is because the left(and for the most part those on the right)are very
uncomfortable with the concept of LIBERTY. Which means..‘one is free do do as
they long as they dont infringe upon the rights of others’. You have
to critically think about that statement..not do the ol kneejerk emotional
reaction. Just because you disagree and can speak with passion in an
intellectual way does not mean you are right.
I remember sitting at a communal dinner table at a little hotel while I was backpacking through
Guatemala. A bunch of real nice folks from all over Northern Europe were there.
They all could not grasp some basic freedom based concepts I brought up. They
automatically looked to their government first to tell them what to do it
seemed. Yes America has its problems, but we do have (or used to)a desire to
take care of oneself, to work on the whole personal responsibility thing.
Australia?..I’ve been there many times,I have family there..they have a freakin
law for everything. They have also found out that criminals..dont—ready?-
follow the law! There are still as many shootings as before..its just that citizens
can only defend themselves with a cricketbat now.
A previous person wrote that gun control and abortion are
would be a time consuming nightmare to try and outlaw either.
I like the bumper sticker..“I’m pro-choice on everything!”
I will end this like I do all my posts..we have to all find some areas that unite us.
Wasting time being angry doesnt accomplish anything. I believe that if
americans had more conversations being more open minded, using manners
and respecting others opinions..we could produce more positive results we all
could be happier with.

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By fearnotruth, January 11, 2011 at 9:39 pm Link to this comment

RE: ...hate slingers…

can be hard to sort the useful fools from the useful tools


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By ocjim, January 11, 2011 at 9:13 pm Link to this comment

Absolutely nothing will change.

Fox Noise will still pump out hate among its varied assortment of hate slingers: O’Reilly, Hannity, and the crazy man with the chalkboard. Rush Limbaugh will still vilify his enemies, race-baiting in the process. Republicans might pause for a few days but certainly will continue the vitriol.

Fox people get paid big money to demonize their opponents. Republican have built their election hopes around vitriol, hate, fear and obstruction.

Both parties fear the NRA and Americans are too passive to do anything of note.

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By fearnotruth, January 11, 2011 at 9:00 pm Link to this comment

RE: Weathermen

The Provocateur Exhumed
by Jared Israel

[Nov. 2, 2008]


The failure to prosecute Ayers and Dohrn, who have publicly confessed to
committing murder, at least in the second degree, and other Federal and State
crimes that have no statutes of limitations, and who have not confessed to, but
are convincingly linked to, at least four murders in the first degree – this failure
supports the charge many people made in 1969: that key Weatherman leaders
were (and still are) agents provocateurs with the assignment of destroying the
very possibility of a decent Left in this country, associating the notion of social
change with gangsterism and corruption.


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By elgordo, January 11, 2011 at 8:08 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

the average 911 response time is 10-15 min. the places with strict gun control laws have higher crime than areas that dont. the average house in montana has 27 guns and this is a very safe place to live. dont even lock my vehicle or house. the sheriff response time in this area is 30 minutes. i willnot rely on the police to protect me in any kind of emergency, not even medical. people in places like new york are subjects and not citizens

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By babycatajesus, January 11, 2011 at 8:00 pm Link to this comment

This madness will continue until America adopts gun laws that prevent any civilian from owning weapons designed to kill other civilians! Why on earth any member of the general public should be allowed to own and use guns specifically made to kill another human being is complete lunacy – there is no reason for this!

Australia finally restricted access to these weapons in the wake of the Port Arthur massacre of 1996 when a killing spree claimed the lives of 35 innocent people and wounded another 21 – all instigated by a lone wack job armed with a semi-automatic rifle.

This horrific incident was the lever that compelled the Federal government of the day to completely ban all similar weapons from the public arena, and indeed – a series of ongoing amnesties have encouraged the handing over of unregistered hand guns, rifles, and shotguns.

A financial incentive also played a major consideration in this matter. These weapons were subsequently destroyed.

Laws regarding the personal ownership and use of handguns and rifles are draconian and rigorously policed; so it is astonishing to someone living in Australia to comprehend that in several American States people are allowed to carry concealed weapons.

This is absolute madness; and is an invitation for disturbed individuals to inflict mass murder!

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By A. Benway, January 11, 2011 at 7:04 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

When, long ago, they wanted me to go to ‘nam and shoot people, I told them that if they wanted somebody shot they’d have to do it themselves…and they do! I refused to do it.

Mr Wind wrote: “William Burroughs is NOT what I would consider a rational mind on gun control issues…” It clear that he does not like Burroughs, fine, but since he does not address the statement Burroughs made - that they always go after the people that did not do it - he evidently agrees with Burroughs. Mr Wind has fallen into the ad homenium fallacy. Pity.

Like my father and grandfather and great grandfather I myself have a heavy old pistol that I carry, and with a permit. I live in the woods, and there are bears and lions. I have never pointed a gun at any man, and never will. That said, here I am, old, and the woods are full of kids growing dope - and they have guns.

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By ardee, January 11, 2011 at 6:51 pm Link to this comment

“Yeah, remember the Weathermen and the SLA?  They went after those a-holes like fox after a squirrel! “

Well, only partially actually.

from Wiki and memory….

In 1970 the group issued a “Declaration of a State of War” against the United States government, under the name “Weather Underground Organization” (WUO). The bombing attacks mostly targeted government buildings, along with several banks. Most were preceded by evacuation warnings, along with communiqués identifying the particular matter that the attack was intended to protest. For the bombing of the United States Capitol on March 1, 1971, they issued a communiqué saying it was “in protest of the US invasion of Laos.” For the bombing of the Pentagon on May 19, 1972, they stated it was “in retaliation for the US bombing raid in Hanoi.” For the January 29, 1975 bombing of the United States Department of State Building, they stated it was “in response to escalation in Vietnam.”

Banks were targeted by both the SLA and the Weathermen more because money was needed to prosecute a supposed revolution than to make a statement about the rich. The Weather Underground was primarily targeting the military, unjust war, and American imperialism.

If we do not learn from history we are doomed to repeat it.

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By berniem, January 11, 2011 at 6:24 pm Link to this comment

Perhaps if this nation wasn’t so enthralled by all things military, chauvanistic, greedy, and paranoid we may find it rational to handle the mass distribution of firearms in terms of consideration of the public welfare as opposed to a rabid sense of individual entitlement. The endless debate over what our elitist founding fathers(no mothers allowed!)meant via the 2nd amendment serves no viable purpose in light of today’s technology and sophistication of both law enforcement and, unfortunately, the randomness of criminal acts. Universal ownership of even the most advanced personal weapons will offer no more protection from assault than would a single shot.22. The only difference exists in the potential for collateral damage which is OK when justifying war crimes but not when resolving neighborhood arguements. Sadly, just as we are unwilling to forego our addiction to fossil fuels in preference of less toxic alternatives, too, are we immature in our attitudes towards conflict resolution as well as ego awareness.

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By skimohawk, January 11, 2011 at 6:00 pm Link to this comment

The comment below from Peetawonkus is so far the only one that makes sense.

The rest is all just the usual blather.

Mr. Robinson: You can slice and dice it any way you want, but the bottom line is that the kid ain’t rowin’ with both oars in the water. Gun control laws had nothing to do with it.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 11, 2011 at 5:56 pm Link to this comment

Peetawonkus, January 11 at 8:32 pm Link to this comment

My drinking buddy, Darryl, has an interesting theory about the 2nd Amendment. Darryl says, “The rich don’t mind if guns are used to kill Democrats or the poor and minorities. But just imagine if someone or some crazy group started popping off right-wing politicians, CEO’s and rich people. Those precious 2nd Amendment rights would evaporate quicker than gasoline on a hot sidewalk.”

Yeah, remember the Weathermen and the SLA?  They went after those a-holes like fox after a squirrel!

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By REDHORSE, January 11, 2011 at 4:40 pm Link to this comment

Same RED MEAT-different topic-different day. The bad ole boogie man is gonna take your guns!! Spare us Eugene. We deserve more. Opinion this-opinion that. How moved is the fixer Boehner. Back at the Washington hogtrough it’s business as usual. I suppose returning us to a Health Care System where parents can literally watch their children die in their arms isn’t murder.

      America is soaked to the bone in loathing and hatred. A lot of it is cause and effect self-hatred that results from the moral collapse of a Nation. It’s best to remember that it’s the cocked and loaded gun inside that kills-not the one in the hand. Isn’t our shooter the poster boy for that idea? Rove and the Fascists Right have taken every opportunity to mine, exploit and revive with distortion, lie and deceit the worst aspects of the American Shadow. They and their MSM propagandists puppets continue to obfuscate and twist reality, deny and prevent open truthful dialogue and exploit racism, superstition, class, fear and ignorance with their every move. Tragic as Tucson is its violence pales in comparison. How many people have those thugs killed? Like Pilot I suppose-their hands are clean.

    The murder and maiming of the innocent is the professed business of Corporate Washington—and they have the Courts and Lawyers to make it stick. Like the long time Junky hitting an extra dose because he can’t “feel it” anymore the Tucson Tragedy simply startled the dying morality and troubled sleep of a beaten and confused populace. More thrills to come.

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By Peetawonkus, January 11, 2011 at 3:32 pm Link to this comment

My drinking buddy, Darryl, has an interesting theory about the 2nd Amendment. Darryl says, “The rich don’t mind if guns are used to kill Democrats or the poor and minorities. But just imagine if someone or some crazy group started popping off right-wing politicians, CEO’s and rich people. Those precious 2nd Amendment rights would evaporate quicker than gasoline on a hot sidewalk.”

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By Gmonst, January 11, 2011 at 3:24 pm Link to this comment

I think we should follow a bit of the Australian model with our gun control.  We need to set up a gradient of different categories of guns based on their designed use and concealability. Hunting rifles and shotguns which only hold six or less shots could remain practically unregulated, allowing hunters and those who wish to protect their homes the ability to do so.  More sever restrictions could be placed on semi-automatic rifles, and hand-guns of all types on down the line until handguns which are semi-automtic and have a large ammo capacity are practically banned.  I like how Australia requires one to state their reason for owning the gun on the application for ownership, and requires a waiting period while the application is reviewed. 

Gun control might not be a perfect solution to gun violence, but it does seem that our regulations could be a lot more realistic and practical.  It doesn’t have to be impossible to get a gun, but it wouldn’t hurt to make it more difficult and requiring more thorough review of the individual purchasing the gun and their reasons for doing so.

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By gerard, January 11, 2011 at 3:15 pm Link to this comment

Mr. Robinson:  Think about what you said:
  “Certainly only someone “unbalanced” would spray a crowd with deadly gunfire.”
  The U.S. is by far the most heavily armed and dangerous nation in the world. The U.S. military trains tens of thousands of “balanced” people to be “unbalanced” enough to “spray crowds with deadly gunfire” and calls it “defending freedom” and “our national security”.  So long as the victims are “foreigners” and preferably poor and sitting on top of buried resouces.  It also helps if their skin is darker than white, or if they can be charged with being “anti-American” or “anti-democratic.” 

Is it so surprising when that attitude sort of free-floats, and runs over into the general population and mixes in with personal frustration, ignorance, and widespread injustice caused by festering political and economic problems and inflamed by people paid to encourage rage?

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By Inherit The Wind, January 11, 2011 at 2:36 pm Link to this comment

William Burroughs is NOT what I would consider a rational mind on gun control issues…This is a guy who killed his wife playing “William Tell”, but it was an “accident” (which is what happens when you are a member of the Burroughs business machine family).

Show me evidence of solid citizens reducing crime with their CC hand-guns.  Show me the numbers!  Until then, it’s just pissing in the wind.

And, remember: For every valid use of a gun in self-defense, we have to count it against every murder and accidental deaths and injuries from those same guns—I actually know more people who have had THAT happen than have defended themselves or their property.

You say guns in the hands of citizens makes us safer, PROVE IT! (and all you have to do is show that private citizens carrying hand-guns have stopped crimes as anything other than a statistical oddity/outlier)

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By A. Benway, January 11, 2011 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn’t do it. I sure as hell wouldn’t want to live in a society where the only people allowed guns are the police and the military.”
William S. Burroughs

As any bright kid can tell you it’s no particularly difficult matter to make a zip-gun - including making the ammunition. Chemicals? Well, not to make things easy - but the primary ingredient in classical gunpowder is pee. So the operative word in the Burroughs quote is “want”. This leaves the second question - what do you chose - a police state or the ongoing problem of popular violence? Suppression or real cooperative action?

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By Maani, January 11, 2011 at 1:49 pm Link to this comment

Boy, what a bunch of canards and cliches!  But very little logic or common sense!

To those who argue (or agree) that “if you disarm the public, only the criminals will be armed.”  Poppycock.  As ITW suggests, there is no support for this, as I doubt a single gun owner or enthusiast here can point to a single crime stopped because the non-criminal had a gun.  And even if such statsitics exist, they are so few and far between as to be meaningless in this discussion.

To those who argue their 2nd amendment rights vis-a-vis the potential for government tyranny or reperssion (the “black helicopter” theory), get real.  If that were to happen, your Glocks - a whole houseful of Glocks, plus a few semi-automatic machine guns - would do NOTHING against the government’s weapons, which would (if it ever got that far) include tanks, APVs, and some new weapons that you may not even realize exist yet.

To those who argue that Dems are anti-gun, SoTexGuy notes that this is a canard.  But to those who woulf argue the opposite - that Dems, too, are pro-gun (or at very least in thrall to the NRA), and thus bear some responsibility for the situation - the difference is that the Dems don’t exacerbate their support for firearms by using incendiary language and symbolism that helps validate and enable the crazies who CANNOT distinguish fact from fantasy - and particularly not 24/7/365, as the right does.

These events don’t happen in a vacuum.  Even if Loughner did NOT have a political agenda (which he clearly did, though perhaps not the one that some demogogues are espousing), he was a disturbed man who was nevertheless able to get his hands on a gun in the state with the laxest gun ownership and carrying laws in the entire nation, and was subject to the near-constant bombardment of the rhetoric and symbolism of the right.

This is simply not debatable.  In this regard, the right bears the larger responsibility, since they are the ones who are not just pro-gun but rabidly so, and are the ones who use rhetoric and symbolism that is dangerously inflammatory, particularly to the weak-minded or impressionable.


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By MeHere, January 11, 2011 at 12:36 pm Link to this comment

There are many issues regarding violence in this country. Gun ownership is absurd but it’s only one of them.  The larger picture includes continuous wars, mental health, education, the deterioration of a supportive social system, the prison system, the death penalty, glorified greed and marked inequality.  Examining any one of these things in isolation is not too productive and it can also be misleading.

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By Timothy Gawne, January 11, 2011 at 12:34 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Be careful what you wish for, you may get it.

In Mexico they have strict gun control laws.  So Mexican oligarchs could just
hire thugs to kill striking workers and they couldn’t fight back.  When the
oligarchs tried that in the United States an armed populace fought back.  Sure,
individual rebellions were eventually crushed by the army, but the army can’t be
everywhere at once, and eventually the labor movement triumphed.  There is
only so far you can push an armed populace - but a disarmed populace is easy

Far more people per capita are murdered in gun-control Mexico than in the
right-to-bear-arms United States.  “When guns are outlawed only outlaws will
have guns” is not just a tautology, it’s true in a practical sense.

People peacefully protesting our stupid wars are rounded up by the police,
herded into ‘free speech zones’, beaten, photographed, arrested, and if they
complain maybe charged with a felony.  ‘Tea Party’ protestors are potentially
armed, and the police are ever so polite.  There is a lesson here, I think.

“when the dominant weapon is cheap and simple, the common people have a
chance” - George Orwell

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By Ed, January 11, 2011 at 12:08 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Repeal or update the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. The way the current Supreme Court interprets the Second Amendment, an individual has a right to own a hydrogen bomb. Repeal the Second Amendment.

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By mel, January 11, 2011 at 11:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We should lose our inalienable RKBA, recognized (not guaranteed, it doesn’t need to be, it’s inalienable - as are all the Bill of Rights) by the Constitution due to the destruction of our mental health system that leaves dangerous & insane people on our streets?

Sheriff Dupnik (what a relief to hear a responsible adult in a position of authority) said the best psychiatric facility in the county was the county jail.  This is terrible.

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By joe, January 11, 2011 at 11:35 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The problem with criminals is they don’t care that concealed carry is illegal(hence criminals). 

More regulation isn’t going to solve that one.  Figure out how to keep guns from criminals first.  Start with better background checks, maybe a required call in background check number for private gun sales and gun show sales.

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By E Cynic, January 11, 2011 at 11:17 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

HA!!! Fugghetaboutit!!!

Stop worrying about gun control that won’t ever happen, it’s like worrying about abortion control, Pandora’s Box is wide, wide, open.  I won’t spend 10 seconds pondering the possibility of “gun control” in a nation that is, to parrot MLK Jr.  “the largest purveyor of violence on the planet.”  How about “gun control” in Afghanistan, or Pakistan, or Iraq or any of the other countries we murder and plunder, like Yemen and Sudan where the US kills indiscriminately under the guise of “targeted killings.”

Violence is what America was birthed in, is swathed in.  Have you all looked at the most recent video games or movie trailers or the new winter t.v. series?  Killing, killing and more killing.  The American blood lust won’t stop now or never.

There is no solution for a nation that has gratuitous violence as it’s calling card.  Secondly, I’m not disarming myself on the belief that the authorities will come to my rescue.  I’ll make anyone a bet who supports “gun control.”  When the US can implement “gun control” in Mexico then I will look for “gun control” state side.  Get real people, putting energy into “gun control” is a waste of time, sort of like hoping and praying the US will stop being a killing machine abroad.  Violence and mayhem is who were are, sad to say.

Likewise, vitriolic and incendiary speech is here to stay, there’s too much money to be made, so what if a loose screw here and there acts on it? (sarcasm) It’s all in a day’s work for the corrupted political system and main stream media. We didn’t arrive here by accident folks. Finally, to the faux Liberals, don’t use this tragedy to argue for more “centrism” either, screw the Rethugs, I won’t “bargain” with madmen.  Watch the Democrats use the incident to argue for more coddling of Rethugs.  “Change you can believe in.”  lol

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By art guerrilla, January 11, 2011 at 11:04 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

1. great point, ray-ray…

2. along those lines, WE ALL have purveyed Death upon
hundreds of thousands of innocent brown/muslim people in
iraq, pipelinestan, and elsewhere:
do you think the family and friends of those innocent
victims are confused and angered by the violence against
them ?
do they cry out ‘why them?’ ?
do they hurt, do they burn with frustration, do they
want to strike back at the source of the attacks on
their families ?
do they wonder why ‘obviously mentally disturbed’ first-
worlders from half a planet away, bomb them, drone them,
shoot them, and kill them a thousand ways directly and
indirectly ? ? ?
in short, are they terrorized by US ?

...but we expect rose petals and genuflection

got hubris ?

art guerrilla
aka ann archy

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By Inherit The Wind, January 11, 2011 at 11:00 am Link to this comment

I don’t know ANYONE outside of the obvious LEOs, appropriately armed guards (eg Brinks truck guards) or pawn-shop and convenience store owners who have a legitimate reason to carry a hand gun.

Can you document how many crimes have been stopped and criminals apprehended in the act by private gun owners?  If it was a significant statistic, don’t you think the NRA would be touting it, LOUDLY?

I know this is stereotyping, but EVERY person I’ve ever known who felt the need to carry a hand gun and wasn’t one of the above, was always someone I wouldn’t trust with a water pistol…ignorant, angry, and just looking for an excuse to use it.  I was nearly shot by such and asshole—and I’ve never forgotten what it’s like to have a trigger-happy frightened moron pointing a .38 with hollow-points at me for…whipping out a matte knife to trim a cabinet we were setting.

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By AnnaCatherine, January 11, 2011 at 10:28 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The author is right. People give very noble reasons for owning guns but for most, I question the actual ‘need’ to own and carry a gun. They are too readily available. But I don’t see anything changing. There is a growing fear of just about everything. I guess there is a certain feeling of securuty about being able to protect ourselves. But it’s been taken to the extreme. One person’s protection is a threat to someone else. Jared Loughner bought his gun for a specific reason. He wanted to go after a woman who represented government. In so doing he killed six people. He was stopped by onlookers and prevented from doing more damage. But the rights of the people of Arizona will remain in place. The events of the day will fade, Loughner will find his place in history but the guns will prevail.

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By SoTexGuy, January 11, 2011 at 10:16 am Link to this comment

Democrats are anti-gun? that’s mostly a canard.. conflating the idea of reasonable rules on gun ownership and gun use with fear of confiscation.. Though it’s true it’s mostly Democrats that have the cojones to talk about the problems of too many guns in our society..

Looking at who carries and who doesn’t and for what reasons.. who has the bigger pair? the person walking around with a pistol in their pants or the one relying on the equipment he was born with?

Adios smile

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By Fat Freddy, January 11, 2011 at 9:45 am Link to this comment


In Arizona of all places.. no-one in the crowd or in that store had a locked and loaded gun at the ready to prevent this deadly assault?

Apparently not. They were mostly Democrats, don’t forget. But the conspiracies are starting to swirl.

From a comment on Claire Wolfe’s blog:

With all of the cell phones taking pictures of everything under the sun… how come there are not hundreds of them washing around the internet?

How come there were no TV or media cameras present and recording?

Where in the world were all the Arizona armed citizens? Someone should have taken that nut out after the first shot… unless they were prevented from being present somehow.

Not a single cop, off duty sheriff’s deputy…. nobody?

I couldn’t find it, but someone said her personal web page/blog had an announcement of the tragedy up almost before the ambulance got there. Huh?

And the blogs/pages/posts of this supposed shooter/loser have pretty much all vanished already – even from Free Republic! He’s a non-person after less than 24 hours? Huh?

Lots more to this than meets the eye, me thinks.

All very valid questions.

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By SoTexGuy, January 11, 2011 at 9:20 am Link to this comment

First, I wonder if that teacher and those students at Jared Lee’s community college had been a little more inclusive and less reactionary towards the new kid.. and some way could have been found to keep him involved and in school.. Would this have happened at all?

On the subject of gun control or no gun control.. everybody is right! All the slogans by the gun lovers (and I do mean gun lovers, people who are emotionally attached and would suffer withdrawal and real stress and apprehension minus their favorite firearms).. all their slogans and rhetoric are correct. The ‘cat is out of the bag’ .. ‘if guns are made illegal, only criminals will have guns’ and most all the rest..

One claim made by advocates of an ‘armed populace’ seems to have failed the test in this instance.. In Arizona of all places.. no-one in the crowd or in that store had a locked and loaded gun at the ready to prevent this deadly assault? Apparently not.. the kid lost a footrace to a bystander.

Those that advocate for any sane limits on what someone can own and especially carry around are also entirely in the right.. Why does someone need to have even one weapon or a stockpile of arms and ammunition the design of which is clearly towards the mass wounding and killing of people? It’s a conundrum.

There’s no quick or easy answer.. and I know it would not be easy to convince me or most gun owners to give up a weapon based on some seemingly arbitrary requirement or ban by the Feds!

Here’s an idea.. The Feds and the Police and all the guys we see everywhere everyday openly displaying firearms.. THEY disarm first. I’m not saying the authorities go without firearms entirely.. a Supervisor might carry firearms.. they can always have a room full of guns and more somewhere and a big van to bring in the troops where needed.. But day in, day out the officials we see and deal with should be armed with a smile..

That would be a good first step towards disarming the nation..


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By Cynthia Fogleman, January 11, 2011 at 9:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I would like to thank Mr.Dillon for this comments and canidid remark ” Unfortunately, I’m not astute enough to figure out the cure.” Gun control is beyond a “cure” because in my personal oppinion it is not “the” problem. The founders of our nation understood the importance of the RIGHT to bare arms and throughout our history guns have been part of the daily lives of most Americans from the need of hunting wild game to defense during frontier days and even now. As Mr.Dillon stated in his 60+ years on this rock I am sure he remembers times when people had gun racks in the their trucks and even drove those very same trucks to high school. I am 32 live in central Texas and remember such times…school shootings where unheard of! I feel that the true issue is the break down of the family unit and which has lead to a accelerated rate of MORAl decay in this country. Generations of Americans are being raised by the mass media! May the God of Creation guide us all!

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By Fat Freddy, January 11, 2011 at 9:09 am Link to this comment

When the federal government stops selling guns, then, maybe, we can talk about gun control.

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By Ray Duray, January 11, 2011 at 8:47 am Link to this comment

Dear Mr. Robinson,

Do you read this peanut section? Well if you do, I have a complaint.

You wrote: “Only someone on the fringe—of society, of sanity—might conceivably hear a slogan such as “Don’t retreat, instead—reload!” and think it not a stirring political metaphor but a direct order.”

Huh? How in the hell did you get out of eight grade, let alone get into the editorial opinion business without knowing that about 1.5 million Americans are employed in a business where there is a rigid hierarchy telling underlings every day to reload. It’s called the Dept. of Defense, Gene. Also, there are SWAT teams, FBI teams, Sheriff’s Deputies, ATF, Secret Service personnel and DEA agents who are all going to reload. Now last week I learned that we have over 800 of these armed and dangerous agencies just within our Federal Government. But I won’t bore you with a rundown. Too many of them are classified for me to let you know who they are. But they certainly know who we are. 

What planet do you live on Gene?

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By mmadden, January 11, 2011 at 8:07 am Link to this comment

If there were gun control laws enacted and the law abiding people couldn’t legally buy one then the criminals would be the ones with guns.

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By BarbieQue, January 11, 2011 at 5:50 am Link to this comment

Every life *IS* precious.

Anyone have a guess as to how many drone strikes have taken place since that horrible Saturday Morning?

Anyone have a guess as to how may civilians the US GOV has called “collateral damage” since Saturday Morning?’

The hypocrisy is…

>>“Only someone on the fringe—of society, of sanity—might conceivably hear a slogan such as “Don’t retreat, instead—reload!” and think it not a stirring political metaphor but a direct order.”<<

Whatever was Barack Obama thinking when he uttered the following “If They Bring a Knife to the Fight, We Bring a Gun’

Selective outrage? Reverse Racism? Baloney?

Eugene has got his divided nation and when history is written he will be known as a divider, not a uniter. And why not, it put food on his family (sorry dubya)

Hopefully, if he has kids (or grandkids, as old as he is) they will have to go to the war his president has escalated.

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By fearnotruth, January 11, 2011 at 5:13 am Link to this comment

One Stop Shopping

Arizona - long noted for Corner Stores where a 1/2 rack 0’Bud LIte and a box of
Remmington rounds, all get charged on the same card… 4x4 be rollin!

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By C.Curtis.Dillon, January 11, 2011 at 4:43 am Link to this comment

Much as I agree with your assessment, Gene, the cat’s out of the bag already.  Even if we stopped all gun manufacture it’s too late.  There’s enough dangerous hardware out there to stock several small armies.  So we can’t really change the physical parameters very much at this late date.

As for ‘thethirdman’ arguments, they seem logical on the surface.  Having a gun gives a homeowner a sense of security in the face of what’s happening on the street.  However, in my 60+ years on this rock I’ve never confronted an armed robber in my house or a violent shooter on the street.  Only in the last few years have so many guns flooded the country that we really need to confront this once unlikely scenario.  Now we have to wonder if every person we meet on the street is packing a pistol in her purse or under his shirt.  It’s a very unnerving situation to consider.  When I was stateside a few years ago it really bothered me to enter a restaurant (in Albuquerque) and see a sign requesting that all patrons check their handguns before entering the premises.  It told me of the fundamental insanity that has invaded my country.  The need to carry a deadly weapon on a day-to-day basis indicates something is very wrong.  Unfortunately, I’m not astute enough to figure out the cure.

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By Free1, January 11, 2011 at 3:51 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Eugene Robinson

Last time I checked a “concealed” gun means Hidden from view. Therefore it doesn’t matter what the law is. Anyone, even your child, can be carrying a gun, bomb, and given the right clothing, 6 machine guns, about 80 lb. of explosives and even a mini nuclear bomb.

Unless you are prepared to force and have everyone walk naked your point in moot.

The Right to bear arms is there to prevent a corrupt government from taking away everything you own and becoming a totalitarian fascist state. That’s any arms ... including tanks, missiles, lasers, EM weapons, fighter jets and even nukes ... as is necessary. Another words anything necessary to protect the people from such a corrupt state.

Let’s be very clear. I don’t condone any kind of violence unless it’s to protect oneself and his/her family. I will also state the Constitution and Law is there for a number of reasons. Can you tell us in detail what these reasons are instead of your rhetoric?

There are much better ways to take down a corrupt government that’s in cahoots with industry when they stop abiding to the will of the people:

- Stop buying their junk / boycott them
- Return all scrap and poisonous junk right back to them
- Hire your own Peace Officers and Sheriffs that won’t roll over for Federal shills
- Create and use your own currency amongst yourselves
- Sign yourself out of the Federal system and become free again
- Stop signing contracts that take away your rights
- Make contracts only with people you trust
- Create your own Common Law Courts with Juries consisting of your Peers
- Reject any and all Admiralty laws / laws of the seas / shipping laws / business laws / British laws
- Learn your rights and practice them with responsibility

It is only a certain faction of the British who stated this WAR on the Free Sovereign People with their Banking, business, fraud, news manipulation, religions and corrupt industry. And it is the people who will eventually send them back into the sea. The only question that remains is when.

Since the British are so brazen and like to publicize their exploits all supporting documents are there for anyone to read for themselves as public record. The only thing required is half a brain to put it all together.

There are many groups around North America that are Lawfully exercising their Rights without any politics, rhetoric or violence involved. These are the true patriots fighting for our freedoms. I’m sure you can find one or more in your area.

Enjoy smile

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By thethirdman, January 11, 2011 at 2:54 am Link to this comment

There are a lot of things that most people know very little about when it comes
to guns.  I hear all kinds of crazy things from reporters and bloggers who know
very little about the topic.  I am a proud gun owner and I follow all of my state’s
gun laws.  But lets get a few things straight:
-Almost ALL guns are semi-automatics these days, even hunting rifles.  Semi-
auto means that you pull the trigger once and one bullet comes out.  They have
been around forever.
-Fully automatic weapons are not necessarily any more dangerous than semi-
-I could turn just about any semi-auto into a fully automatic weapon with very
little adjustment.
-I live in a state that mandates 10 round magazines, just like the article
advocates, and I can get extended mags very, very easily.  Or I could just carry
multiple 10 round mags.  It takes 2 seconds to change them out.
-A Glock 9mm is the least of your worries.  The damage could have been much
much worse with guns like an M4, SKS, AK47, MP5, all of which are legal in
almost every state.  My local guns shop sold 74 M4’s last month alone.  (They
were technically AR15’s but it’s the same thing)
-In the state I live, it is a felony to carry a concealed weapon anywhere at any
time.  It still happens ALL the time.  The people who follow rules are at a huge
disadvantage here.
-I have come to understand that many gun laws on the books are only there to
make the public feel safer.  They define meaningless categories and reflect very
little working knowledge of guns themselves.  Guns are tools and can be
modified in just about any way imaginable.  The law says I must have a 16 inch
barrel on my shotgun.  It would take me 20 seconds and a hand saw to make it
any length I wanted.  The law says… you get the point.

Honestly, I am divided on gun control.  While I would love to see an end to all
gun violence, events like the shooting in Tucson remind me that there are crazy
people in this world who operate outside the realm of the social contract we
have chosen to enter.  I know the police cannot and will not protect my family
or me from these individuals.  The second amendment is not a license to own
military grade weapons, but if others have them, I need more than a musket to
defend my home.  So what is the realistic answer?

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