Archive for tucson

VIDEO: Mother of 9 year-old killed in Tucson shooting demands a plan to end gun violence; Giffords, Kelly launch anti-gun lobby campaign.

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Christina Taylor Green tuscon giffords shooting

"When will you find the courage to stand up to the gun lobby? Whose child has to die next?"

That's what many of us would like to know.

Via email:

Dear Laffy,

My nine-year-old daughter, Christina-Taylor Green, was murdered with a gun in Tucson, Arizona two years ago today.

Since that day, far too many families have gone through similar pain.

Families in Aurora, Colorado. Families in Newtown, Connecticut. Families of the 33 people who are murdered with guns every single day across America.

How many more families need to feel that pain before our leaders take action? What will it take for them to find the courage to stand up to the gun lobby?

Today, please watch the TV ad I made with Mayors Against Illegal Guns and join me in calling on your leaders in Congress to Demand A Plan to end gun violence.

Thank you for supporting families like mine whose loved ones were murdered with guns,

Roxanna Green
Mayors Against Illegal Guns

And via the Demand a Plan site:

Tell your lawmakers that you are calling because we need a plan to end gun violence NOW. We can prevent future tragedies by passing common sense legislation that will:

  1. Require criminal background checks for ALL gun sales, including private sales
  2. Ban assault weapons, including high-capacity magazines
  3. Make gun trafficking a federal crime

PLEASE DONATE.

And while we're on the subject, Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly launched a battle against the gun lobby: No more "fear":  

In an op-ed in USA Today, the two make their goal clear: to counter the influence of the gun lobby.

"Special interests purporting to represent gun owners but really advancing the interests of an ideological fringe have used big money and influence to cow Congress into submission," they write.

"Rather than working to find the balance between our rights and the regulation of a dangerous product, these groups have cast simple protections for our communities as existential threats to individual liberties. Rather than conducting a dialogue, they threaten those who divert from their orthodoxy with political extinction."

Emphasizing that they support the Second Amendment and own two guns themselves, Giffords and Kelly call for "laws to require responsible gun ownership and reduce gun violence."

"Until now, the gun lobby's political contributions, advertising and lobbying have dwarfed spending from anti-gun violence groups. No longer. With Americans for Responsible Solutions engaging millions of people about ways to reduce gun violence and funding political activity nationwide, legislators will no longer have reason to fear the gun lobby."

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Jared Loughner: "Thanks for the freak show. I saw her die in front of me."

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Lee Camp's newest rant matches my own state of mind, which no matter how agitated, will never ever be as wildly out of control as this loon's:

He looked at the judge and blurted out, "Thanks for the freak show. I saw her die in front of me."

U.S. marshals then escorted Loughner from the courtroom.

The judge ruled Jared Lee Loughner incompetent to stand trial.

He will no longer be around to bother us again, whether in prison or a mental institution.

Now it's up to us to get that deranged, murderous maniac out of our thoughts and concentrate on the miraculous recovery of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, one of his many shooting victims.

H/t: JSigwart

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Rep. Gabrielle Giffords awake, talking following her skull surgery

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Today's Moment of Happy:

(AP) – Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords has woken up and is communicating after doctors placed an implant in her head to repair her skull yesterday, neurosurgeons said today in a news conference.

More happy: She no longer has to wear a helmet, which is not only a significant stride physically, but also psychologically.

Happy Thursday!

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VIDEO report + Rep. Gabrielle Giffords at shuttle launch: "Good stuff!"

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I love my Moments of Happy, especially when they're about Rep. Gabby Giffords. She was able to watch her husband, Commander Mark Kelly, and his Space Shuttle Endeavor crew lift off today. She stayed in her wheelchair so that she could be moved more easily and safely.

When she saw the Endeavor take off, she said, "Good stuff!"

Good stuff.

Pia Carusone, her chief of staff, gave us more good news: Gabby's speaking voice is back to normal. Via the Palm Beach Post:

She added that the congresswoman had a full grasp of sarcasm, which she considered a sign of sophisticated brain function.

Her next medical milestone will be a cranioplasty, the replacement of a piece of her skull that was removed after she was shot. The cranioplasty was credited was saving Giffords' life during the critical few hours after the shooting.

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Rep. Gabrielle Giffords "has lost none of her independent spirit or charisma"

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There is an encouraging story in Roll Call on a day that celebrates springtime and rebirth. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is, indeed, being "reborn" if you will, and that is a ray of sunshine we can all appreciate:

As Rep. Gabrielle Giffords begins week 16 of her recovery from brain injury, some of those closest to her told the Arizona Republic that the lawmaker has lost none of her independent spirit or charisma and is gradually learning the details of the shooting that wounded her and killed six people. [...]

Dr. Dong Kim, the neurosurgeon who oversees Giffords’ care at TIRR Memorial Hermann, said she “is maybe in the top 1 percent of patients in terms of how far she’s come, and how quickly she’s gotten there. I think the question, then, becomes, how far is she going to go?

Gabby Giffords is now able to speak in single words and declarative phrases. Longer sentences require her to first form each one in her mind, then speak it out loud, which she can do normally, both in rate and in clarity.

She also continues to be briefed by her staff, who bring her memos and articles to read. Soon, they'll bring her House resolutions to read, too. Amazing.

Her right arm and leg are still not quite up to par, but she can stand on her own and do some walking; in fact, she's "pretty close" to walking without help. More good news: she is not depressed, and she's managed to avoid behavior problems and personality changes, including how she relates to others. Amazing #2.

As for that missing portion of her skull, it will be replaced in May.

Her her husband, Mark Kelly says that he notices improvement in his wife "every few days". He was the one who told her about the shooting and that people were killed on that awful day in Tucson.

She was looking over his shoulder as he read aloud a New York Times article about her. When he skipped a paragraph about the six killed and many others wounded in the attack, she snatched away the newspaper. It was then that he realized how well she was able to read.

So many people, so many people,” Giffords repeated as Kelly comforted her. ... “She was thinking of it like she couldn’t believe it,” Poteet said. “She kept saying, ‘I want so bad,’ and she was trying to talk about it. But it was too many thoughts in one.”

She is still unaware that her aide, Gabe Zimmerman, Judge John Roll and 9-year-old Christina Taylor Green were killed.

“When I tell her that she’s not going to be in a wheelchair forever, she believes that,” Kelly said. “Right now she gets up and takes a couple steps. I think she’ll probably use a wheelchair for, I don’t know, maybe another three months.

Amazing #3 through infinity. Happy Easter.

More here.

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Gabby Giffords plans to attend space shuttle launch

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I needed a Moment of Happy. Here it is:

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is expected to attend the April 29 launch of space shuttle Endeavor, which will be commanded by her husband Capt. Mark Kelly.

We got wind of this here, and now it looks like a go.

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Gabrielle Giffords has had phone calls with intern who helped save her life

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Today's Moment of Happy...

Remember Daniel Hernandez, one of the heroes in Tucson who helped save Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' life? (I still can't believe he's only 21.)

Via.

Hernandez and Giffords have spoken on the phone a few times, some short conversations and some longer. That sounds encouraging to me!

She’s just doing extremely well and recovering very quickly,” the 21-year-old told the newspaper. He later added, “It’s great hearing her voice.” [...]

Meanwhile, her Congressional office is fulfilling day-to-day duties and keeping up with constituent work in her stead.

And they've been fundraising. Positive thoughts abound. Keep up the good work, Gabby!

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