Archive for gunmakers

3 GOP-supported policies that do nothing to prevent-- & can contribute to--mass murders like Navy Yard massacre

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guns enough smaller

mass gun killings since PBO took office animated GIF

This graphic shows the Mass Shooting/Killing incidents since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009. (H/t: Nicole Sandler)

In today's Los Angeles Times, there was an article that went into more detail about Navy Yard murderer Aaron Alexis's "calm, indiscriminate" gun massacre, and how he intended to kill as many people as possible.

As I read the piece, three passages stood out to me, three passages that were painful reminders of how wrongheaded Republican policies are and how the consequences of their laws can hurt Americans.

Let's take them one at a time.

One: Conservatives are obsessed with Small Government (except, of course, when their party's legislators shove trans-vaginal ultrasound probes into women's vaginas against their will). Ironically, it slips what's left of their minds that We the People are government, Elected officials represent We the People. We the People gave them their Big Government jobs. And they claim to value We the People over government, so by shrinking government, they're contradicting themselves by squeezing We the People out. We, too, become smaller. Oops.

Meantime, here's what happens when the GOP succeeds in downsizing the role of that Big Bad Evil Kenyan Marxist Government:

Anthony Meely, chairman of the Fraternal Order of Police's labor committee for the Navy Yard's officers, said in an interview that the force was woefully undermanned Monday because of government cutbacks, which may have led to additional deaths. There were only six patrolmen on duty instead of 11, all were posted at the gates, and only two patrol cars were available [...]

Meely summed up: "I believe the security guard might still be alive if we had had adequate staffing." Instead, he said, "we were undermanned."

So budget cuts eliminated the very protection the shooting victims' lives depended on. Budget cuts resulted in people dying.

Two: "The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." Uh huh:

The chief could hear the shots ringing inside and saw the private security guard at one of the entrances, Meely said. The chief told the guard to unholster his weapon and be prepared to return fire, Meely said, and when the guard did, Alexis shot him.

The bad guy with the gun killed the good guy with a gun. Again, the end result was death.

Three: Gotta have those High Capacity Magazines, because the Second Amendment is the most important Constitutional Amendment evah! The problem with that is, those magazines allow high volume, uninterrupted bullet paths right smack into a large number of human targets. Mass murderers have often been tackled only when they needed to stop and reload. Had Alexis had an assault style firearm capable of shooting 30 to 100 rounds before having to reload, more people would have died:

[FBI Director James B. Comey] said the rampage ended only when Alexis ran out of ammunition. "He was isolated and pinned down by the first responders," he said.

Freedom to own certain weapons is one thing. Freedom to spray crowds with bullets is another. Most of us support the freedom to breathe without fear of being mowed down.

But gun makers donate to politicians and the NRA, and politicians and the NRA do their bidding. Because, you know, freedom.

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Gun makers set our national policy. "Is having such easy access to guns worth the carnage?" No.

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nra

Today's Los Angeles Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

Re "13 dead in D.C. shooting," Sept. 17

For too long we have allowed the gun lobby to set our national gun policy. It has been a perilous experiment that has cost American lives, including 12 innocents at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday.

The gun lobby's only interest is to sell more guns, plain and simple, so it steadfastly opposes any and all attempts to implement the most common-sense regulations, such as requiring a background check for every firearm purchase. Too many spineless politicians kowtow to the lobby's demands.

Mass shootings committed with dangerous weapons easily obtained by dangerous people have become commonplace. It's time to establish a national gun policy that has saving American lives as its priority.

Loren Lieb

Northridge

***

The elephant in the room grows larger by the day and still goes unnoticed.

What a sad commentary it is on the state of our society when mental illness goes improperly untreated, as it apparently did for gunman Aaron Alexis. How many opportunities arose in his life when he could have been treated?

We live in a society that puts such a stigma on mental illness that we would rather let those afflicted go untreated with the possibility of harming others or themselves rather than have a system of true mental health care.

Russ Levine

Temecula

***

In the aftermath of yet another mass shooting, we will read the usual barrage of letters both for and against gun control, which is par for the course.

But 12 more individuals have been massacred and the gunman is dead, so each and every one of us must ask ourselves one question: Is having such easy access to guns worth the carnage? Any honest, thoughtful individual would assuredly say no.

Jack Wolf

Westwood

***

Sadly, my reaction to the latest massacre is one of cynicism grounded in logic, given our inability to achieve responsible gun control in our country. After reading about the tragic event in our nation's capital, my questions are these: What's new about this, and when can we expect the next slaughter?

Joan Horn

Carlsbad

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"No atrocity/crime trumps my gun rights." Well, no gun rights should trump MY right to stay safe/alive.

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gun nut cartoon

Today's Los Angeles Times letter to the editor, because our voices matter:

Re "Aurora, one year later," July 20

One counter-protester near a ceremony in Aurora, Colo., carried a sign reading "No atrocity/crime trumps my gun rights."

Perhaps I am naive to think that the person carrying that sign might reevaluate his or her attitude toward gun rights if his or her parent, sibling or child had been murdered in that Aurora theater, or at Sandy Hook Elementary School, or at Columbine High School. Or accidentally killed in his or her own home, and with his or her own weapon.

If the sign-bearer did not reevaluate his or her attitude within the context of such a personal tragedy, then I understand why those of us promoting rational regulations controlling access to all types of weapons in this country — including those with a reasonable place only within a military context — are doomed to failure.

Jana K. Shaker

Riverside

What do you want to bet that the sign-carrier considers him/herself a "right-to-lifer."

right to life my ass pro life

These people are the true pro-lifers: For 200 Hours And Counting, Sit-In At Florida Capitol Demands Stand Your Ground Repeal.

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5-year-old North Carolina boy shoots 4-year-old

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errorfatal

Here we go again. In this latest episode, a 5-year-old decided to emulate someone he's apparently watched handle a firearm. Or maybe it just looked like a new toy or something enticing enough to explore. Whatever the reason, it was available to him, and it was loaded. And unfortunately, it went off and a bullet hit a 4-year-old.

Via WXII 12 News:

Officials said it appeared the 5-year-old boy found the gun in a downstairs closet and accidentally discharged the weapon.

The good news: The 4-year-old was in stable condition with a non-life-threatening injury to his shoulder.

The bad news: The 4-year-old was in stable condition with a non-life-threatening injury to his shoulder.

The other bad news: The 5-year-old shot him. With a gun. That he found, still loaded, because of the negligence of at least one adult gun owner.

The other other bad news: The NRA and gun manufacturers refuse to help end the cycle of violence because money and power are their priority. They encourage kids to beg Mommy and Daddy for their very own guns that are marketed to them in pretty colors in fun magazines. It's up to us to keep the pressure up.

Police are still investigating the incident, and WXII is reporting that an adult was in the home when the shooting occurred.

#protectingthefamily

#butwegrewuparoundguns

#responsible

#youdontunderstand

#AmericanTradition

#selfprotection

#JustATool

H/t: LiveWire

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