Archive for NRA

"Gun advocates think they know how any scenario involving guns will play out. They don't."

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cliff schecter on last word guns gun advocates

In one of the following letters, the author refers to "gun advocates." I prefer the terms gun fondlers, gun zealots, and gun fetishists, but what do I know, right? She makes a great point, as do the others in today's Los Angles Times letters to the editor.

Take a look at these and at the video below, because our voices matter:

Near the end of your article on the Las Vegas shootings, you mention Joseph Robert Wilcox, who pulled out a concealed weapon and confronted Jerad Miller at the Wal-Mart.

As I read this part of the article, I wondered what gun advocates who promote the fallacy that the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun would say about that. Wilcox may have believed this idea and might have wanted to be a hero, but now he is dead after having been shot by a bad guy.

Gun advocates think they know how any scenario involving guns will play out. They don't.

Unfortunately, this part of the story will not even be part of the conversation. It is to our country's detriment that it won't be.

Nancy Zaman, Los Angeles

***

The politicians' angry cries against the release of five Guantanamo Bay detainees are loud. What of the American terrorists who routinely slaughter children, police officers and innocent civilians?

Those politicians refuse to defy their sponsor, the National Rifle Assn., and show little care for American lives.

Ruth Palanker, Los Angeles

***

Isn't it about time that we just stand up to the defenders of an amendment written more than 200 years ago and say it just doesn't apply anymore? Isn't it time for the cowards in Washington to quit protecting the NRA and start protecting the rest of us?

It's time we closed the gun shops and the gun shows and started restricting and shutting down the manufacturers of these weapons.

And yes, it is a mental health issue. It's about the absolute insanity of the people who think that owning a gun somehow makes you more of an American.

Collect the guns and get these nuts off the street before more of our children die.

Lee Cohen, Glendale

Now take a look at our own Cliff Schecter making the case against violence on The Last Word. As always, he knocked it out of the park:

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CNN No Longer Trusted -- Taken Hostage By Gun Advocates

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School Shooting

Wow, thanks to the hard work and investigative klugers at CNN, I feel much safer now. All parents should. They've added a new chapter to Rachel Maddow's "Debunction Junction."

It started when earlier this week there was a map put out by Everytown For Gun Safety that indicated the locations of school shootings since Sandy Hook. There was an amazing number-- 74. Holy gunpowder, Batman! Put up the Bat Beacon! Not bacon, beacon. School shootings have become an epidemic.

Raw Story:

“After Tuesday’s shooting at an Oregon high school, many media outlets, including CNN, reported that there have been 74 school shootings in the past 18 months,” said the column. “So on Wednesday, CNN took a closer look at the list, delving into the circumstances of each incident Everytown included.”

Fortunately CNN isn't a lemming. They don't just print the news because it's news. They're fair and balanced. They investigate for themselves. They let nothing get in the way of truth and facts. Look, they even dedicated six weeks, 24/7 on a missing Malaysian Airliner and didn't get one fact straight except that one about the plane going missing. So certainly, this news organization was going to get to the bottom of these school shootings.

The news network CNN reportedly bowed to pressure from gun advocates when it redefined what constitutes a “school shooting” and lowered its estimate of the number of attacks since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut from 74 to 15.

CNN

Breathing easier? I am. Phew. It seems the other news outlets had inflated the number of school shootings by nearly 400%.

Oh, curious how this number got adjusted downward from 74 to a much "safer" 15 school shootings? It wasn't hard. Just change the definition of school shooting. Of the 74 incidents reported since Sandy Hook, all of them took place on a school campus. That was just too  general for CNN. After consulting with the NRA and other gun proponent groups, they revised their definition.

CNN said that the gun safety group should not include “personal arguments, accidents and alleged gang activities and drug deals” in its numbers, which would drop the number of school shootings from approximately one per week since Newtown to one every five weeks.

So if the argument is personal, an accident, or a gang member or drugs are involved, it's not a school shooting, even if it takes place on a school campus, during classes? Why not just lower the number and say it's only a school shooting if it takes place as a ritual sacrifice or animals must also be harmed in the crime? Bet the numbers would drop drastically with that definition. Maybe it would even be down to zero.

CNN is a fraud, as we've all come to see it in recent years. They've strayed from once reporting news to full time coverage of tabloid fare. The fact is school shootings are out of control. And you're no less dead if you were shot and killed by a gang member or drug user during your school day on the facility.

Hang your head in shame, CNN. You've taken the NRA poison. It won't be long now before you're considered Fox News light! Come to think of it, you already are.

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Overnight: Lauren Mayer: No More Shootings (Enough is Enough)

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guns Lauren Mayer


Lauren Mayer is a singer/songwriter/pianist who writes comedy songs about everything from Supreme Court decisions to the Kardashians. She proudly supports leftist causes including equal pay, reproductive choice, fair minimum wage, addressing climate change, and marriage equality.
Note: Lauren's CD is now available!! Hear clips or purchase CD/downloads at http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/laurenmayer8. It is also on iTunes and will soon be on Amazon!

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Student killed. Just "another week in the United States of the NRA."

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oregon shooting student killed v CNN gunsPhoto via CNN

While I was on air with Nicole Sandler today, this terrible news broke: Student killed, shooter also dead, at Oregon high school. Shortly after that, I received a press release from Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, in part (emphasis mine):

"We hear our representatives calling for prayers, but today, we call on responsible gun owners, mothers, fathers, and all concerned citizens to call on our elected officials to pass reasonable reforms that will prevent gun violence. Will we have to wait until there is an active shooter at every school in America before our lawmakers act?" said Sarah Finger McDonald, Oregon Chapter Leader for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. "Today’s shooting was the 74th since Newtown. Our children and teachers should be learning and teaching in schools—not on lock down, cowering under desks, and evacuated from school with their hands raised in the air.”

Here at TPC, we can barely keep up with the epidemic of NRA-sponsored carnage, but we've tried:

These stories make a few things very clear. For example, in one case, no gun was needed to tackle a shooter and disarm him. In another case, a "good guy with a gun" was killed by "a bad guy with a gun." So much for that right wing gun-fondler talking point.

Referring to Second Amendmenters as "good guys," framing it in such unrealistic, black-and-white terms, is misleading at best. This isn't a 1950s Roy Rogers movie, it's real life. And right now, reality sucks.

Our own Cliff Schecter was on the Ronan Farrow show today recapping the series of horrific events. He spoke with his usual brilliantly blunt eloquence:

Cliff was asked on because of the latest "student killed" headline. And because that "student killed" headline has become so damned commonplace. What has this country become? As Cliff said, it's not the same place in which he grew up. Ditto.

And with that, here are today's Los Angeles Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

With more states allowing citizens to openly carry weapons into stores, libraries and churches; with the National Rifle Assn. convincing others that the best antidote to gun violence is more guns; and with people entertaining themselves watching movies and TV shows full of gratuitous violence, do we really need to ask, "What precipitated this event?"

Just look in the mirror.

Matt Giorgi

Brea

***

Dateline, Mission Viejo: A son kills his father, mother, sister and himself with a gun.

Dateline, Atlanta: A gunman trying to charge into a courthouse with an assault rifle and grenades is subdued after a gun battle with police.

Dateline, Seattle: A gunman kills one person before being subdued.

Dateline, Las Vegas: Two police officers are assassinated by two shooters who also kill a shopper and themselves.

Another week in the United States of the NRA, where that phrase "not one more" is just another bumper sticker.

So, folks, enjoy your next trip to the mall or sending your kids off to school. What could possibly go wrong?

Frank Ferrone

El Cajon

***

Two armed individuals walk into a restaurant carrying loaded weapons because they are exercising their 2nd Amendment rights.

Two armed individuals walk into a restaurant and kill two police officers.

Question: How does anyone know which two individuals just walked in until they start firing?

Terry Sternberg

Woodland Hills

And to drive home a few very serious points, here is a tongue-in-cheek video courtesy of CollegeHumor's Favorite Funny Videos:

H/t: The wonderful Gaius Publius of AMERICAblog

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What Do You Get When You Mix a Psychiatrist, Fox News & A H.S. Shooting

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High School Shooting

Sounds like a set-up for a joke, doesn't it? Sadly, this is true.

Fox news must have their resident psychos on call. I know that major newspapers write obituaries before celebrities pass so they can go to press immediately upon hearing the tragic news.

Now there's been another school shooting, this time in Oregon. A student killed. A school coach wounded. The shooter dead (self-inflicted gunshot).

So who does Fox News call upon? Resident psychiatrist and Medical A-Team member Dr. Keith Ablow.

It didn't take 15 minutes before Fox already had the gun-promoting, NRA sponsored psychiatrist come on the air and fire a warning salvo that this shooting is going to motivate anti-gun nuts" (his professional phrase, not mine) to come out in droves and demand gun control.

How many killings is it going to take for these NRA crackpots to finally get the message they, or their families, could be next if unbridled gun ownership continues?

This man is supposed to be a psychological expert. I think Fox News got the psycho part right. Check it out:

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Are Wayne LaPierre And The NRA Responsible For One Of The Las Vegas Killings?

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Las Vegas

A tragic, mindless random shooting took place this past weekend in Las Vegas by two very disturbed rightwing nuts, Jerad Miller and his wife, Amanda,. These two fringe "sovereign citizen" types, fond of the 2nd Amendment in the loosest of interpretations, walked into a restaurant, point blank killed two Las Vegas Metropolitican cops who were just eating lunch, then continued on their crazy spree across the street. Their destination? Walmart. Of course Walmart. Where else do you go when you want to show you're just part of the normal world? While they were stocking up on free weapons and munitions, they had fired warning shots into the ceiling and yelled for everyone in the store to get out. I guess these two had a compassionate streak in them after all.

According to NBC News:

“They just said, ‘The revolution’s begun,’ they said that they shot some officers, and basically get out of the store if you don’t want to get hurt,” said Tyrone Ellis, who works at the store.

Now here's where the NRA comes in. Over and over again spokesperson and NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre has expounded his organizations mantra after random mass shootings like Columbine, and Sandy Hook, and even the recent Isla Vista massacres. Mindless as it is: "The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." 

Would someone please explain that to the family of the third victim of this Las Vegas madness, Joseph Wilcox.

A shopper, Joseph Robert Wilcox [good guy], 31, of Las Vegas had a concealed weapon and decided to confront Jerad Miller, police said. As he walked toward the suspect [bad guy], Amanda Miller [another bad guy] came up behind him and shot him several times in the ribs, police said.

Wilcox is dead. He listened to the insipid ramblings of the NRA's LaPierre and now he's deceased. He is now a dead good guy with a gun. All because he actually believed the NRA's claptrap defense of their truly indefensible stand. His death was most likely avoidable. But instead of following directions, he took the NRA for their word. And now he's gone. I wonder if Wayne LaPierre will be speaking as Wilcox's memorial.

This tragedy points out once again, just like time and time before, that gun control is something that needs to be addressed. And it also points out that carrying a gun doesn't make you any safer than not being armed. All of those people who escaped uninjured from the Walmart can attest to that.

We need fewer pistol-packing heroes and more gun sanity and regulations. Sorry NRA. But the 2nd Amendment was never intended to give everyone the ability to pack heat just to make us feel "manly." It was to allow us to defend ourselves as part of a well regulated militia.

Also recently, about a week ago, there was the random Seattle Pacific University shooting where the assailant had killed three people. But because he didn't have a larger clip, he had to stop to reload. Here's how that worked out, according to Truth About Guns:

The gunman walked into the Otto Miller Building just after 3 p.m. and shot three people, said Capt. Chris Fowler with Seattle police. The gunman then began reloading when a student building monitor pepper-sprayed the shooter.

“The shooter began to reload his shotgun and the student building monitor inside the hall confronted the shooter and was able to subdue the individual,” Fowler said. “Once on the ground, other students jumped on top of them and they were able to pin the shooter to the ground until police arrived.”

Regulation, not good guys with guns saved lives. Let's have background checks. Let's have limited ammo clips. Let's stop avoiding the issues. Gun control can be done if the cowards in Congress will grow a backbone. It's been achieved in the past. Let's hope it's done again soon, before so many more must needlessly die to appease the wishes of the few over the hopes and prayers of the many.

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Cliff Notes: "This is a disease, one that the NRA’s leadership is helping to spread"

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gun nut disease

My dear friend and mentor, Cliff Schecter, has a new post up; Cliff has given me permission to share his work with you, so I’ll give you the latest edition of what I call Cliff Notes. Here are a few excerpts from his latest at The Daily Beast, with permission. Please read the whole thing, because he has way more than I’ve included here. It's about the utter insanity and carnage attributed to the NRA and their gun-fondling devotees who are blissfully spreading a deadly Gun Disease all over America.

These bits and pieces don't do it justice. Please, link over for the entire post titled "From Las Vegas to Georgia, the NRA Has Created a Monster":

It’s been quite a month for the National Rifle Association: Massacres at universities, in restaurants, and at retail stores from South Carolina to Las Vegas. Gun nuts porting assault weapons to dinner from Chili’s to Chipotle. The leaders of the take-no-prisoners gun-rights organization have been witness to the logical outgrowth of its policies and rhetoric. Much as the GOP helped create the lunatic-fringe Tea Party within its midst, the NRA chieftains have helped birth a beast whose black heart now beats strongly among its most radical adherents. [...]

The result: They’ve watched impotently as this witch’s brew of mental illness, far-right politics, propaganda, and heavy weaponry has led to one shocking—yet wholly predictable—massacre after another, with the most recent targets including the execution-style murders of two lunching police officers in Las Vegas. [Laffy Note: See Sher's White Supremacy and the Bundy Tea Party Terrorize the Vegas Strip] [...]

Just over the past few weeks, we’ve seen mass murders in Isla Vista, Seattle, Myrtle Beach, and Las Vegas. A catastrophe was barely averted at a courthouse in Georgia—you know, the place that in its infinite wisdom chose to pass its “guns anywhere” bill, because clearly if there was something daycare centers and airports were lacking, it was guns.

Somehow this didn’t stop this self-styled “sovereign citizen.”  [...]

But this is America, the NRA leadership’s version, where a man in this mental state was a gun seller and trader (remember how Timothy McVeigh was a gun seller at gun shows?), who got mad because he had—what else?—outstanding firearms charges against him. So yeah, why not kill the authorities and everyone else you can in a blaze of glory? We make it so easy, after all. [...]

In Las Vegas, two shooters, a man and a woman... left a swastika and “Don’t Tread on Me” flag on one of the murdered cops’ bodies... Did I mention the man had lived on Cliven Bundy’s ranch for a bit (and was kicked off… one wonders what it took for that to happen)? [...]

This is a disease, one that the NRA’s leadership is helping to spread. [...]

Put simply, the NRA’s leaders have demonized anyone whose job it is to enforce our laws and protect the United States in its pamphlets, emails, speeches, TV ads, Web shows, radio programming, and anywhere else they can unleash this cancer on the American public. So is it then shocking when their more unstable allies and adherents use the same language when planning or executing the mass killing of policemen, judges or other government officials?

If Wayne LaPierre were instead named Wayne Mohammed, do you think we’d still be hearing from him? Or would he be in a black site in Romania somewhere? [...]

If we want to change things, it starts with not sugar-coating or ignoring the treasonous and murderous role played by the leaders of the NRA, but by acknowledging it and taking them on every day.

Cliff Schecter is a bestselling author, syndicated columnist, and political strategist. He consults for the gun-safety group the National Gun Victims Action Council. 

Follow him on Twitter: @CliffSchecter

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