Liberals have an unending capacity for doing the wrong things. When the economy is hurting, they suck the life out of productive citizens rather than stimulate the economy so all can have the opportunity to do well. Following a tragic shooting, they respond with meaningless gestures. They would punish those who abide by the law. The cry has gone out for stronger gun control laws and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) is the head cheerleader. For starters, her proposed bill includes:
Stops the sale, transfer, importation and manufacturing of more than 100 specifically-named firearms as well as certain semiautomatic rifles, handguns and shotguns that can accept a detachable magazine and semiautomatic rifles and handguns with a fixed magazine that can accept more than 10 rounds.
Stops the sale, transfer, importation and manufacturing of large-capacity ammunition feeding devices (magazines, strips and drums) capable of accepting more than 10 rounds.
Protects legitimate hunters and the rights of existing gun owners by:
grandfathering weapons legally possessed on the date of enactment;
exempting more than 900 specifically-named weapons used for hunting and sporting purposes; and
exempting antique, manually-operated, and permanently disabled weapons.
Feinstein makes claims that are abusive of the literature she cites:
A Justice Department study found the Assault Weapons Ban was responsible for a 6.7 percent decline in total gun murders. However, since the 2004 expiration of the bill, assault weapons have been used in at least 459 incidents, resulting in 385 deaths and 455 injuries.
So let’s have a look:
“At best, the assault weapons ban can have only a limited effect on total gun murders, because the banned weapons and magazines were never involved in more than a modest fraction of all gun murders. Our best estimate is that the ban contributed to a 6.7 percent decrease in total gun murders between 1994 and 1995, beyond what would have been expected in view of ongoing crime, demographic, and economic trends. However, with only one year of post-ban data, we cannot rule out the possibility that this decrease reflects chance year-to-year variation rather than a true effect of the ban. Nor can we rule out effects of other features of the 1994 Crime Act or a host of state and local initiatives that took place simultaneously.”
Another Feinstein claim:
“A recent study by the Violence Policy Center finds that between 2005 and 2007, one in four law enforcement officers slain in the line of duty was killed with an assault weapon.”
However that’s not what the study states. The data which she is referencing studies 64 incidents that already involve “assault weapons” of which also involved law enforcement. The study actually says that out of the 64 incidents that involve assault weapons, four ended in at least one law enforcement fatality, not that one in four officers are killed by assault weapons.
What is it Feinstein really wants?
“If I could have gotten 51 votes in the Senate of the United States, for an outright ban, picking up [every gun]… Mr. and Mrs. America, turn ‘em all in.”
Would banning large capacity magazines stop mass shootings? No.
Nothing new here. The criminals response? Carry more magazines, as we’ve seen in Virginia Tech where the shooter brought nineteen loaded magazines for his two handguns and Columbine where they brought 13 extra magazines.
And Feinstein would demand more:
-Requires that grandfathered weapons be registered under the National Firearms Act, to include:
-Background check of owner and any transferee;
-Type and serial number of the firearm;
-Positive identification, including photograph and fingerprint;
-Certification from local law enforcement of identity and that possession would not violate State or local law; and
-Dedicated funding for ATF to implement registration
As before, the focus is on law abiding citizens. Feinstein proposes a bevy of regulations which would do absolutely nothing to prevent any of the mass shootings which have occurred in this country.
Feinstein seems ignorant of many things. One of them: Connecticut HAS an assault weapons ban now.
Sec. 53-202. Machine guns
Sec. 53-202a. Assault weapons: Definition.
Sec. 53-202b. Sale or transfer of assault weapon prohibited. Class C felony.
Sec. 53-202c. Possession of assault weapon prohibited. Class D felony.
Sec. 53-202e. Relinquishment of assault weapon to law enforcement agency.
Sec. 53-202f. Transportation of assault weapon. Authorized actions of gun dealer.
Sec. 53-202g. Report of theft of assault weapon.
Sec. 53-202j. Commission of a class A, B or C felony with an assault weapon: Eight-year nonsuspendable sentence.
Sec. 53-202k. Commission of a class A, B or C felony with a firearm: Five-year nonsuspendable sentence.
Sec. 53-202o. Affirmative defense in prosecution for possession of specified assault weapon
The blithering idiots at the Journal News thought identifying law abiding gun owners would be a great idea.
Again, directing invective at those who abide by the law.
Now they find themselves alarmed at the backlash and have hired armed guards for their own protection. Despite using weapons for their own protection, the hypocrisy abounds:
The editors have said they believe knowing where guns are is in the public’s interest. The newspaper has also taken a strident editorial position in favor of strict gun control.
If they were serious about the public interest they would publish the names of those possessing weapons illegally. That would be truly useful.
Nothing the anti-gun loonies have proposed would have any effect. So what would help? A number of things.
Who are the people that kill? Primarily those with previous criminal records and the mentally ill. The NY Times reported that of more than 1600 murders committed between 2003 and 2005, 90 percent were committed by those with criminal records. About half of those killed had criminal records.
And there’s more:
Baltimore police records show similar statistics for its murder suspects in 2006. In Milwaukee, police reported that most murder suspects in 2007 had criminal records, while “a quarter of them [killed while] on probation or parole.” The great majority of Illinois murderers from the years 1991–2000 had prior felony records. Eighty percent of Atlanta murder arrestees had previously been arrested at least once for a drug offense; 70 percent had three or more prior drug arrests—in addition to their arrests for other crimes.
It is illegal for convicted felons to possess guns. So how do they obtain them? Gun shows? Nah:
According to the 1997 Survey of State Prison Inmates, among those possessing a gun, the source of the gun was from -
a flea market or gun show for fewer than 2%
a retail store or pawnshop for about 12%
family, friends, a street buy, or an illegal source for 80%
In other words, an illegal firearms transfer is the problem. A big problem.
The 62-year-old convicted felon who gunned down two firefighters and wounded three first responders on Christmas Eve in Webster, New York used weapons his neighbor illegally purchased for him, according to state and federal authorities.
Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris obtained their weapons through a straw purchaser.
The penalties for those who illegally transfer a weapon ought to mirror the penalties for those who use the weapon in a crime. If the weapon is used to commit murder, the person transferring the weapon ought to be charged with murder as well. Simple.
“It is absolutely against federal law to provide any materially false information related to the acquisition of firearms. … It is sometimes referred to acting as a straw purchaser, and that is exactly what today’s complaint alleges.”
The purchaser ought to be informed of proposed penalty at time of attempted purchase. The purchaser should then sign an informed consent form and it should be filed with the same authorities who approved the permit for the purchaser.
Felons often find regaining gun rights a simple task:
While many states continue to make it very difficult for felons to get their gun rights back — and federal felons are out of luck without a presidential pardon — many other jurisdictions are far more lenient, The Times found. In some, restoration is automatic for nonviolent felons as soon as they complete their sentences. In others, the decision is left up to judges, but the standards are generally vague, the process often perfunctory. In some states, even violent felons face a relatively low bar, with no waiting period before they can apply.
Weapons must be kept out of the hands of felons.
And then we come to the mentally ill.
We must attack the problem. One of the most neglected issues in this country is that of mental health. The Sandy Hook shooter reportedly had a “personality disorder.” Jared Loughner, the Tucson, Ariz., shooter, was described in the media as being “mentally deranged” and had to undergo treatment before his sentencing hearing.
James Holmes, the Colorado theater shooter, had seen a psychiatrist and had been referred to a threat-assessment team. Wade Michael Page, the Wisconsin Sikh temple shooter, was a loner with a history of “patterns of misconduct” while in the U.S. Army.
A recent report conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration revealed that almost 30 percent of adults ages 18 to 25 had some form of mental illness this past year. The report showed that just 60 percent of people with a serious mental illness received treatment.
Adam Lanza was clearly not well.
It’s estimated that 10% of homicides are committed by untreated mentally ill persons.
Any background check of a gun permit applicant must include the question
“Is there anyone in your household who might suffer from mental illness?”
It’s going to be controversial, but I strongly believe that children should undergo a routine psychological evaluation upon entering school, entering middle school and entering high school. There are relatively simple tests for identification of psychopathic tendencies. There are tests available for younger populations. If a screening suggests a problem, then the results can be referred to a higher level professional for further evaluation. Identifying Adam Lanza and Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris early might have saved many lives.
Harris and Klebold linked their personal computers on a network and both played many games over the Internet. Harris created a set of levels for the game Doom, which later became known as the Harris levels. Harris had a web presence under the handle “REB” (short for Rebel, a nod to the nickname of Columbine’s sports teams) and other cyber aliases, including “Rebldomakr”, “Rebdoomer”, and “Rebdomine”, while Klebold went by the names “VoDKa” and “VoDkA”. Harris had various websites that hosted Doom and Quake files, as well as team information for those he gamed with online. The sites openly espoused hatred for the people of their neighborhood and the world in general. When the pair began experimenting with pipe bombs, they posted results of the explosions on the websites. The website was shut down by America Online after the shootings and was preserved for the FBI.
Klebold and Harris did not plan to shoot those at Columbine. They intended to blow them up.
On a Sunday morning news show I heard Dianne Feinstein make the statement that there were “armed guards” at Columbine and they could not prevent the shootings. There was one armed cop and without a doubt he kept a bad situation from being worse.
And Sen. Feinstein, your assault weapons ban did not prevent the shootings either.
We do need new measures to address gun violence, but what we need is effective action and not the usual and typical liberal kneejerk reaction.
Assault weapons are infrequently used in crimes
A Jackson police official said officers have encountered assault rifles on the streets, but they don’t contribute to the majority of crimes.
“We’ve confiscated quite a few of them from drug dealers. That’s really where we see them surface the most,” said Assistant Chief Lee Vance. “We don’t have a lot of crimes that have been committed with assault rifles.”
Liberals don’t care about facts. They also don’t really care that kids are killed. Scores of kids are killed in Chicago yearly.
In Chicago, more than 530 people under the age of 21 have been killed since 2008 and many more have been shot or have otherwise suffered violence—often at the hands of their peers and particularly in the city’s African-American and Latino communities. Nearly 80 percent of youth homicides occurred in 22 black or Latino communities on the city’s South, Southwest and West sides—even though just one-third of the city’s population resided in those communities. The rate of youth homicide in West Englewood on the city’s South Side, for instance, was nearly five times higher than the citywide mark.
They care when it happens all at once.
The NY Times continues to maintain its oblivious perspective that criminals will respect the law.
Over the years, states have made it increasingly possible for almost any adult to carry a concealed handgun in public, including on college campuses, in churches and in state parks — places where people tend to congregate in large numbers and where, in a rational world, guns should be strictly prohibited.
Adam Lanza could have shot his way into SHES with handguns. Klebold and Harris did not care about gun free zones or assault weapons bans. The NY Times finds optimal the world in which the assailant is safe from retribution and the potential victims are defenseless. In other words, a target rich environment.
So what does need to be done?
- Find and confiscate illegally possessed weapons. That means heading into the inner cities and barrios and cleaning them out.
- Publish the names and addresses of those who illegally possess weapons (That would mean real journalism)
- Weapons must be properly secured.
- Weapons probably should not be permitted in the households in which someone is mentally ill.
- End “relief from disability” for felons
- Properly identify and treat mental illness, especially psychopathy
- Severely punish the illegal transfer of weapons
Liberals duck the real issues in gun violence. They want the easy “fix”- the symbolic but meaningless actions. These proposals are more difficult but would be extremely effective.
So let’s do something. The right things.