Posts filed under ‘Firearms’
Oh man. I just finished reading:
The neighbor looked at the clock and saw it was almost 8:30, time to walk her daughter to the bus. “I have to go,” she said, hugging the Bardens, leaving them at the kitchen table. Jackie poured more coffee. Mark checked his phone messages. Jackie walked outside to get the mail and brought it into the living room. Mark opened a package from Minnesota that contained a Sherpa blanket and a note that read: “We will never forget.”
The school bus came. The school bus went.
“What do you want to do?” Mark asked, and in that moment, the answer to both of them was clear.
“What can we do?” Jackie said.
“Nothing,” Mark said, and he sank down next to her on the couch.
So, so touching, especially for anyone who’s lost and misses a loved one.
The right has so many deep-pocketed folks funding think tanks and other causes, it’s nice to see rich Democrats doing that too. Finally.
The battle for gun reform in the wake of the Newtown killings ended in defeat this year. But it’s clear that it also ushered in a new moment for the gun reform movement. It launched a new effort to build a national political infrastructure to challenge the NRA — one more broad and savvy than previous ones, and one that isn’t going away. Those who are involved in this new effort conceive of this battle as a protracted and difficult one that could take many years, and seem prepared to stick it out over the long haul.
The latest: I’m told that venture capitalist and major Democratic donor Kenneth Lerer is rolling out a new campaign today to target gun violence and the NRA. The campaign includes a new Web site, StopTheNRA.com, that offers videos and news articles about the gun lobby’s excesses and extremism, and gives people a place to sign up to join a lobbying campaign to push for gun reform.
“The point of StopTheNRA is to post and create viral content and put it all in one place to bring ongoing attention to the outrageous positions of the NRA and to continue to bring pressure on the issues,” Lerer tells me.
What could possibly go wrong:
Independence Day in Washington, D.C. may see bigger fireworks if the “Open Carry March” put forth by a Marine veteran turned libertarian activist actually goes forward.
Adam Kokesh, 31, is planning a July 4 rally of pro-gun activists openly carrying rifles from Virginia to Washington as an act of “civil disobedience.” The plan, according to his Facebook event page, is to march across Memorial Bridge with rifles loaded and slung across the back “to put the government on notice that we will not be intimidated [and] cower in submission to tyranny.”
The invite continues, stating, ” … This will be a non-violent event, unless the government chooses to make it violent.”
Kind of sad to think of the possibility that this could materialized based solely on lies (the government is coming to get your guns!) told by the wingnut talk show crowd, Republicans who are trying to whip up their base oh, and Faux News.
Tuesday I posted about a 5-year-old boy who shot and killed his 2-year-old sister with a “Cricket” starter-gun he had been given as a gift last year.
Here is a 30 second advertisement for the “Cricket” gun. Look at how toy-like it looks. And check-out the pink one for girls:
Why is it legal to advertise or produce guns for children?
A 5-year-old boy accidentally shot his 2-year-old sister to death in rural southern Kentucky with a rifle he had received as a gift last year, authorities said.
The children’s mother was home at the time of the shooting Tuesday afternoon but had stepped on to the porch for “no more than three minutes,” Cumberland County Coroner Gary White told WKYT-TV.
White told the Lexington Herald-Leader the boy received the .22-caliber rifle as a gift. He said the rifle was kept in a corner and the family didn’t realize a bullet was left inside it.
“It’s a Crickett,” White said, referring to a company that specifically makes guns, clothes and books for children. “It’s a little rifle for a kid. … The little boy’s used to shooting the little gun.”
Hey, it’s a “Crickett.” It’s a “little rifle for a kid.”
So, what, IT DOESN’T SHOOT REAL BULLETS? HELLO! THESE AREN’T TOYS.
I. Am. Loving. This:
Ayotte Faces Backlash Over Gun Vote
Gun show background checks are pretty universally popular in New Hampshire…and Kelly Ayotte is facing some serious backlash from voters in the state for voting against them last week.
Ayotte now has a negative approval rating with 44% of voters giving her good marks and 46% disapproving. That’s down a net 15 points from the last time we polled on her, in October, when she had a 48% approval with 35% disapproving. 75% of New Hampshire voters- including 95% of Democrats, 74% of independents, and 56% of Republicans- say they support background checks. And 50% of voters in the state say Ayotte’s ‘no’ vote will make them less likely to support her in a future election, compared to just 23% who consider it to be a positive.
Ayotte won her seat in 2010 by 23 points. But in a very early hypothetical match up between her and new Democratic Governor Maggie Hassan, she trails by a 46/44 margin. This issue is really giving her some trouble.
“The issue is really giving her some trouble?” Good. Very good. I think the reason people are so furious about this is because polling shows that something like 87% of all Americans want some sort of background check but the senate blew them off which so clearly shows how special interests control D.C. We thought they were there to represent We the People? Silly us.
I mean, since when did 87% of all Americans want something done about anything? I don’t remember a time, other than this but what did we get? The proverbial big, fat middle finger. It just screams as to how dysfunctional our “democracy” is and folks like Ayotte are the poster child for that now.
Far as I know this is the first bit of polling that’s come out since Senate Republicans voted en masse against background checks, and it doesn’t bode well for them:
Although [Mark] Sanford’s unpopularity is clearly the main reason Democrats have a chance to win in this district, it’s interesting to note that there is some backlash against Republicans over last week’s vote on background checks. 86% of voters in the district say they support them to only 12% opposed, and 45% of voters say the GOP’s opposition to them makes it less likely they’ll support the party in the next election compared to only 21% who consider it a positive. That anger over the gun vote comes despite Barack Obama having only a 41% approval rating in the district with 51% of voters disapproving of him.
The Senate has rejected a bipartisan proposal to expand background checks on gun sales, handing President Barack Obama and Democratic leaders a major defeat on one of the key pieces of the president’s second-term agenda.
The vote was 54-46, with only four Republicans crossing the aisle and voting with the Democrats in favor of the bipartisan proposal by Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.). Sixty votes were needed.
A medical examiner says a man who died in the infield during a NASCAR race at Texas Motor Speedway shot himself in the head.
The Tarrant County medical examiner’s office on Sunday said the death of 42-year-old Kirk Franklin of Saginaw was a suicide.
Fort Worth police have said a man who was camping in the infield died of a “self-inflicted injury” after getting into an argument with other campers. The incident happened late in the Spring Cup race.
My sympathies to Mr. Franklin and his loved ones.
Mother Jones is up with a pictorial essay documenting 100 years of the NRA’s descent into paranoia and fear. Check it out here.
CBS News: No GOP Backers Of Gun Control Filibuster Would Agree To An Interview
CBS News called out 14 Republican senators on Tuesday for declining requests to be interviewed about their proposed filibuster of an upcoming gun control bill.
The senators—including minority leader Mitch McConnell—are part of an effort, led by Kentucky’s Rand Paul, to block any potential expansion of gun laws in the wake of the shootings in Newtown, Connecticut. On Tuesday’s “CBS This Morning,” congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes reported on the lobbying being done by families of some of the Newtown victims. She then said that none of the potential filibustering senators had agreed to an interview.
“We asked all 14 Republican senators for an interview about their filibuster threat, but none of them were available,” Cordes said.
Geez. There are terrifying times for people working in the law enforcement profession:
The recently elected Mingo County sheriff has been shot and killed near the courthouse Wednesday.
A 911 dispatcher confirmed that Sheriff Eugene Crum was shot on Harvey Street near the county courthouse. Crum had just taken office in January.
The Daily Mail has learned that Crum died from his injuries.
Delegate Harry Keith White, D-Mingo, told a reporter that Crum was known to eat lunch outside near the courthouse in the same spot everyday. A county commissioner reports a suspect drove by and shot Crum as he was eating.
“Apparently somebody just drove up and shot him. That’s what they told me. Shot him dead,” White said. “That’s from our county commissioner in the courthouse, who was crying when he called me.”
Yesterday morning I posted a tweet from a reporter at Buzzfeed who attended an NRA press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. He was shocked at the unprecedented level of security.
But his tweet didn’t give details like those below. Seems to me the NRA and its sympathizers live in a very dark, paranoid, scary world:
NRA Rolls With Well-Armed Detail at Press Club Event
Does ex-Rep. Asa Hutchinson, R-Ark., know something we don’t?
The former lawmaker, Drug Enforcement Agency director and Homeland Security undersecretary brought several armed guards and a bomb-sniffing dog to the National Rifle Association’s School Shield Program press conference at the National Press Club on Tuesday.
Bags were searched as the members of the media were filed into the room. Water bottles were confiscated. However, when a reporter asked the current leader of the NRA’s School Shield Program why there were so many armed guards, she was ignored.
Then another reporter asked the question again: Why the excessive security detail?
“As you go into a mall there is security,” Hutchison said. “So there is security here at the National Press Club.”
“We come here a lot,” yet another reporter returned. All of the reporters HOH spoke to could not recall seeing this level of security at a press conference held at the press club.
Hutchinson’s security detail at the event was not contracted by the press club, said Bill McCarren, executive director of the National Press Club. The security measures at the event were provided by the NRA for the NRA.
Further, at Tuesday’s press conference, the presence of the bomb-sniffing canine and the armed-guard bag check leads us to believe that had we chosen to bring a firearm to this event, it would have been frowned upon.
Oh the irony:
There’s an article up this morning over at CBSNews.com titled: Is America Irreversibly Pro-Gun? These two sentences appear at the end of the third paragraph:
The biggest prize for gun control advocates is a national background check system for gun purchases. But after talks on the issue between Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., broke down in recent weeks, even that proposal, which enjoys 90 percent supporting the latest CBS News poll, will be difficult to enact.
So, CBS cites a poll showing 90% of Americans support a national background check system but the headline asks if America is “irreversibly pro-gun?” What? Is the NRA writing CBS’s headlines?
There’s this (note the last paragraph):
We will oppose the motion to proceed to any legislation that will serve as a vehicle for any additional gun restrictions.
And there’s this:
Remember (just last week) when the Republican party came out with an “autopsy” concluding that “public perception of the party is at record lows” and it is seen as being out of touch?
Gee, why they had to commission a report to come to that conclusion is beyond me:
Via Yoko Ono yesterday:
26 children and adults were killed in the Sandy Hook shooting. We were all outraged.
Here’s what’s happened in the 87 days since:
America would be outraged about this too, if only the “liberal media” would devote as much time and attention (as in 24/7 coverage) to it as it did Sandy Hook.
Remind me never to go to Georgia.
Georgians with a weapons permit would be allowed to carry guns into churches, parts of college campuses and bars under legislation approved in the state House on Thursday.
House Bill 512, sponsored by Rep. Rick Jasperse, R-Jasper, passed 117-56 and now goes to the Senate.
After more than an hour of emotional debate, the bill passed largely along partisan lines. Rep. Charles Gregory, R-Kennesaw, upset over an amendment that limits rights of those whom law enforcement perceive as potential threats, voted against the bill.
Sheesh. Rep. Gregory sounds like a real piece of work.
The Washington Post has a fascinating article up just now titled: Magazine: How many people do you know who have been shot? It highlights nine Washington-area residents who were asked how many people they kn0w who have been shot either in a murder, accidentally or in a suicide (successful or not).
Here’s a taste:
Tony Lewis Jr., 32
Washington // Community activist, Washington
My uncle Tyrone was killed in ’93. My cousin Scoop committed suicide in ’97. My cousin John John was killed in 2004. My cousin Alan was killed in 2008. That’s just my family. With friends, the list just goes on. It’s truly commonplace. To be honest with you, I can’t give an exact number. Especially if you’re talking about being killed and/or shot by guns.
In these type of communities where I was born or raised, being shot, people dying of gun violence is as normal as rooting for the Redskins. It truly is a way of life. It’s something that unfortunately, early on in life, you come to terms with. And that’s especially a reality for people who were born and raised in D.C. in my era. I was born in 1980. The crack epidemic. Being the murder capital. And what those years did was create a culture of violence that no matter how minute or serious the issue, it ended in some form of gun violence.
You see your friends with their brains blown out. So it’s interesting when you hear about these mass shootings. The Sandy Hooks and even back to Columbine, Aurora, when congresswoman Giffords got shot. You see the rest of America taking on something that urban America has already been forced to deal with. Maybe not a mass shooting, but if 30 people in your community, in a few square blocks, get shot in a year, you know?
My number is: 0. I don’t know anyone who’s been shot.
Some brutal statistics in this JAMA article. Like: Over 30,000 people die annually in the United States from injuries caused by firearms. That’s ten 9/11s every year.
The last paragraph is the money quote.
Firearm Legislation and Firearm-Related Fatalities in the United States
Importance Over 30 000 people die annually in the United States from injuries caused by firearms. Although most firearm laws are enacted by states, whether the laws are associated with rates of firearm deaths is uncertain.
Objective To evaluate whether more firearm laws in a state are associated with fewer firearm fatalities.
Results Over the 4-year study period, there were 121 084 firearm fatalities. The average state-based firearm fatality rates varied from a high of 17.9 (Louisiana) to a low of 2.9 (Hawaii) per 100 000 individuals per year. Annual firearm legislative strength scores ranged from 0 (Utah) to 24 (Massachusetts) of 28 possible points. States in the highest quartile of legislative strength (scores of ≥9) had a lower overall firearm fatality rate than those in the lowest quartile (scores of ≤2)…
Conclusions and Relevance A higher number of firearm laws in a state are associated with a lower rate of firearm fatalities in the state, overall and for suicides and homicides individually. As our study could not determine cause-and-effect relationships, further studies are necessary to define the nature of this association.
Because we might be attacked by a shark!
I can’t do it justice. You’ve GOT to read this post.
That “Republican makeover” isn’t going so well in Michigan.
My God they’re insane:
From abortion limitations to expanded pistol carrying rights, lawmakers have kicked off a new session with recycled issues and proposals that sparked some of the most contentious debates in last year’s Legislature, but failed to become law.
There are eight abortion-related bills and seven that ease handgun restrictions. Most aim to overcome or circumvent one or another of the few vetoes Gov. Rick Snyder issued last year.
Also in the hopper are several bills the governor was happy didn’t land on his desk in 2012. Among those is one that would outlaw prevailing wage requirements on public works projects.
Another would reduce the sales tax on motor vehicle and watercraft purchases, gradually cutting into state revenue.
Gromer M. Jeffers is a political reporter for the Dallas Morning News:
Ah yes, we begin a new week of gun violence here in the good ol’ U.S. of A.
5 Shot at Delaware Courthouse, Shooter Killed
WILMINGTON, Del. — Five people were shot when a gunman opened fire at the New Castle County Courthouse here Monday morning, state police said. One of the wounded was a Capitol Police officer.
The shooter was killed by Capitol Police officers, according to state police spokesman Sgt. Paul Shavack. The shooter was in his late 20s to early 30s Police are still trying to determine to determine his identity.
The shooting began around 8 a.m. when the gunman was stopped by security at a security checkpoint inside the front door.
Super-scary situation unfolding right now in Los Angeles:
Three police officers were shot early Thursday — one fatally — and authorities believe the suspect is a former Los Angeles police officer who wrote an online manifesto threatening to harm police officials and their families.
The suspect was already wanted for allegedly killing the daughter of a former Los Angeles Police Department captain as well as the woman’s fiance in Irvine over the weekend.
The three new shootings occurred in Riverside County. One LAPD officer was grazed in the Corona area, law enforcement sources said. Then sometime later, two Riverside Police Department officers were shot in Riverside. One of those officers died, sources said.
Police have launched a manhunt for the suspect, Christopher Jordan Dorner, 33.
Ah, yeah. Who takes a vet with PTSD to a shooting range? Military guys steeped in the gun and killing culture I guess:
This morning the White House released a photo of President Obama supposedly shooting skeet at Camp David last August. When I’ve seen a photo or video of someone shooting skeet the gun is pointed into the air so this looks weird to me but whatever.
That said, we sure are in a sad state of affairs when the president finds it necessary to release a photo of himself shooting a rifle in order to prove ah, what? His manliness? And at the same time we’re talking about the proliferation of guns and gun violence? What’s going on around here? Geezus. Talk about mixed messages.
Hey, I have an idea. Instead of dealing with the issue of guns-everywhere and mass shootings, let’s just desensitize ourselves to them. And let’s start with the kids:
Students at a high school in Illinois experienced a uniquely terrifying school shooting drill on Wednesday. Instead of conducting a regular school lockdown, Cary-Grove High School administrators simulated gunfire by shooting off blanks in the hallways while students locked their classroom doors, pulled the curtains, and hid.
The new normal?