Comments from President Obama by $8 blue check mistermix| December 14, 20123:49 pm| 98 CommentsThis post is in: Gun nutsFacebookTweetEmail I don’t remember ever seeing him this upset.
Well, he’s the President. It’s on him to do something. Call out the conservative justices on the Court and the NRA; make it clear that these kids’ blood is on their hands.
Otherwise, it’ll be just like after Aurora, and we’ll all be back here in 3 months lamenting another tragedy.
I think my kid is starting to think I’m crazy for all the love I’ve been giving him today. Trying not to think about those kids in that school, because it’s really tearing me up.
I hope you’ll all take some time with your loved ones today or tonight and be thankful for what you/we have.
Jesus. What a thing.
Yeah, I, too, have never seen him this upset. He did say we have to do something, without worrying about the politics. I am hoping that means he is (finally) going to do something about the NRA and gun control. Especially now, that he doesn’t have to worry about re-election.
He may be the President, and he wields great power, but what can he do alone? What are individual Americans going to do to help him?
@PS: not just Aurora…. it’s a loooooong list of communities and oh how I want the cycle to end, but the lament, deflect, ignore, rinse and repeat cycle is a tough one to break with our media and the influence of who sets policy.
“Meaningful action.” I’m ready, mister president.
He and I have this in common: a daughter in elementary school. That emotion he shows runs as deep as is conceivable.
Ezra Klein has a post “Eleven facts about guns and mass shootings in the United States.” Very useful in the face of a good deal of gibberish being strewn about.
There were 39 gun deaths in the UK this year, in a nation of 70 million or thereabouts. In the US there are 150 A DAY. Gun control works.
Sign the petition https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/immediately-address-issue-gun-control-through-introduction-legislation-congress/2tgcXzQC
As a life long gun owner and member of the NRA I say ENOUGH!!! there is absolutely no legitimate reason for long gun magazines to hold more than 4 or 5 shots. If you can’t hit your target with that you should not be out hunting.
I won’t have a hand gun in my house because the only reason to have one is to kill people and I did not spend many years in school and practice trying to keep people alive to see most probably my own family member shot with my own hand gun.
If you want to shoot hand guns, keep them at the gun club.
It is time to say to our politicians, you want to keep your job, get the guns! Get them out of our schools, off our playing fields, off the streets and out of peoples homes.
Fuck the second amendment. That is what the national guard armories were created for. So “militia” didn’t keep their guns at home. Contact your Senators, your representatives, your governors, town council members. Get it done in the HOLIDAY SPIRIT!
But for a gun jamming at the Mall (and the asshole at the mall not being able to shoot), we would have had two mass shootings this week (well, I guess OR qualifies as mass, but it could have been so much worse).
Sadly, the politics (and the horses being well out of the barn; there are so many guns in circulation) dictate that gun control isn’t the answer. This matter (presumably) and the OR shooter (apparently) and Jared Loughner (clearly) show that whacked out people and guns are a bad, bad mix. As posted previously, we’re going to have to address mental health issues more proactively and, at some level, we are going to have to protect people better in places of assembly. More cops, more metal detectors, more security all around.
Very, very sad for the Families of the kids…
@PS: No, it’s on to us to do something. We need to find ways to change the grounds for discussion. The gun companies and their handmaiden, the NRA, can’t be allowed to continue to drive the national dialogue.
Sometimes when we talk about issues, it reminds me of that old 1960s poster: Somebody do something! Oh…. I’m somebody.
My wife works in an elementary school – I know she will be in tears when she hears about this because she can envision this too clearly. Anyone who ever had children will immediately know what the fear and anxiety of waiting for word would be like.
Even the President of the US
As long as gun owners love their guns more than their children this will go on. Any politician who tries to stop it in the meantime is more likely to get assassinated than to succeed.
I’ve already seen threads on FB talking about the President’s “fake” tears. I really think he’ll propose something this time, and dare the opposition to tell us how all we should trust that every “law abiding gun owner” would never ever crack up, and that it is unspeakably insensitive to “law abiding gun owners” to take up this issue when one among them does crack up.
Culture of Truth
I have two modest suggestion that do not involve banning guns. One, crack down on the illegal gun trade. Criminals buying guns – who could argue that’s a good thing? Two, greater attempt to prevent the truly mentally disturbed from owning or accessing guns and attempt at meaningful intervention before a tragedy takes place. Both proposals would actually solidify gun ownership among the healthy and law-abiding.
@mdblanche: lol wut. hysterical much?
This has to be a tipping point. If not, this nation will have to reap the whirlwind that it has sowed.
I’m a 66 year-old veteran and life-long Democrat. Our gun culture is a corrosive and self-destructive sickness that has metastasized to the point that it threatens our national identity. The people that continue to advocate a nearly unrestricted access to weapons of incredible lethality have to be stopped. It is madness not to.
Something has got to change. Even something minimal is enough – I don’t know what exactly, but even the tiniest bit of change would demonstrate that the gun lobby is not invincible. Maybe Mayor Bloomberg would be willing to lend his profile to that action. It could be an historic event.
I would LOVE to see this. I’m not entirely sure how it would work, but I picture something like a check-out system, where everyone’s privately-owned gun is kept safely and then tracked scrupulously. At first I thought that a local police station would be an ideal place, but that gets the government directly involved, which might be a constitutional problem. But maybe it could be like having a slip at the dock: the business could be regulated by the government but not wholly managed by the government. Maybe everyone who owns a gun has to keep it at a firing range or hunting club, check it out, then check it back in.
(Now, in a country obsessed with concealed and open carry, it’s not very likely to happen, but it seems like the basis of a sober gun policy, no?)
Coulter is on Hannity saying that the best way to stop this happening in the future is concealed carry. This country will never learn.
This time is different. Simply by the ages of the victims at 5 to 10 years old. I can’t remember another set of victims in this country that many and that young. If memory serves, there was a very similar mass murder of children this young in I think Scotland in a place with some fairly strict gun laws,. And then the fascist nut in Holland .
But not here, that I can recall, and it is really so over the line taboo, I don’t think the sense of rage that will come after the shock wears off, will go away that easy. I am just numb, it won’t process and just leaves a profound sense of bewilderment/
edit – make that fascist nut in Norway
Culture of Truth
The President should appear at an NRA meeting and make some modest proposals.
It would of course make them crazy, and publicize their insanity, which would only hurt their cause more. He has a tendency do this.
My Uncle was a hunter (in the UK) and that is exactly what he was required to do, check out his rifle when he went hunting and then check it back into the gun club when he was done.
(Those rules were put into force after the Dunblane massacre)
@Litlebritdifrnt: Concealed carry by whom? The teacher? And, of course, there’s the weentsy little problem about a solution predicated on deterrence (i.e., no one would open fire for fear that someone nearby would fire back) in cases where the shooter is perfectly willing to end up dead, which quite a lot of them seem to be.
@The Dangerman: Sadly, the politics (and the horses being well out of the barn; there are so many guns in circulation) dictate that gun control isn’t the answer.
In the immediate future, no. It would take 10 years, but eventually the guns in circulation will go down. Prohibiting the sale of ammunition would help, although I’m sure there will always be a black market. We have to start somewhere or nothing will ever change.
@FlipYrWhig: I have practiced in the north woods of Pennsyltucky and had my hand inside so many drunk hunters who either shot themselves or some else. This issue infuriates me, you need liability insurance for your car (which can kill people), your insurance rates go up if you keep guns in your home. If you want to own a gun, pay up, insure your ass so that when peace of mind is stolen or played with by drunken relatives you won’t be bankrupted. Go after the gun makers who sell “modifications”, crack down on gun shows, fuck they want you to have picture id to vote but throw a couple dozen Franklins around and you can have any caliber with extra magazines and maybe a silencer!
Coulter and Hannity are both safe as I assume they both have adequate security; I would be far more moved if concealed carry has once – just once – stopped a mass shooting. Unless she wants kids packing heat in their bookbag, she’s full of shit (this is shocking, of course).
Are there any organized attempts to get a new amendment going to fix or repeal the 2nd? Under the DC v. Heller interpretation, the 2nd amendment is simply broken.
@Litlebritdifrnt: Good to know. It seems quite logical to me. And if something happens because a gun for which the club is responsible goes astray, well, the club has a massive civil and criminal problem on its hands.
No reason for circulation to go down (without active confiscation); guns last basically forever if maintained.
Do something. For real. Do it now. I’m explicitly asking you to politicize this tragedy, because preventing this from happening again (and again, and again) is far more important than the feelings of Second Amendment Jesus.
By my count there are now five gun-related petitions. Signed ’em all.
@Litlebritdifrnt: Well Great Britain opened the Debtors Prisons for her Georgia colony and the Gaols for Australia, but it must have been the Lunatic Asylums that populated the rest of our fucked up country?
@Teri: Mandated insurance sounds like a good idea. Maybe a public option, like flood insurance? Tied to your hunting license?
The same Coulter, of course, who suggested Timothy McVeigh only chose the wrong building by not going for the NYTimes.
@Llelldorin: That’s why the President and others in power (along with all of us) need to start calling out the wingnut justices who wrote and signed onto Heller out for the consequences of their decisions.
Everything I can. If he’s willing to do something he’s got my back.
@General Stuck: Yes, this time is different. This is the cold-blooded butchery of very young children in what is supposed to be the safest place there is. This is every parent’s worst nightmare. This is what terrorism really is.
We may as well cut our military spending to zero. It seems kind of dumb to waste trillions of dollars fighting religious extremists in Asia when we have the NRA right here at home working their corrupt little asses off to ensure that every nut, misfit and psychopath has unimpeded access to firearms.
It’s the guns, but it’s not just the guns.
There’s something beyond the guns and ammo and magazines that has changed. Something about us.
Not just, but by far mainly, the USA.
Not just desiring to kill some real or imagined offender, or one’s own family, or whatever awful typicalness, but having to take the lives of as many people beyond that as possible.
There’s something really, really going fucking crazy deep in this society.
You could duplicate every bit of gun laxness and lobby as it’s found here somewhere else in the world and though things would get a lot of worse there, I don’t think you’d see this.
We are seriously fucking dangerously nuts, and there’s all sorts of categories of stressors and isolating mechanisms and so forth which are going increasingly into that, but it’s not just the guns.
It’s the guns, but it sure as hell ain’t just the guns. It’s us. Predominantly white male ‘us’, in the mass shooting case. But not exclusively.
I think we are being ruined by the combination of concealed carry laws (and the sentiment behind them even in states that haven’t yet legislated it), combined with the NRA as an organization working not just to make guns legal everywhere but as the lobbying arm of a industry dedicated to selling as many of them as possible.
If we were a nation in which everyone had the legal right on paper to bear arms but as a practical matter very, very few people actually exercised that right, we would be much safer without necessarily having stricert gun control laws.
But thanks to the gun nuts, guns have become not only legal acceptable but also socially acceptable, and are on their way to becoming ubiquitous. The barriers of social disapproval are just as important as the legal barriers. When people take guns everywhere, to public events, to bars, to the mall, to the movies, to churches, and soon into schools, and everyone else has to just accept it as the new normal, when taking a gun with you everywhere is not an obvious indication of somebody who is sick in the head, then we’ve lost. And lost in a way that has nothing at all to do with the law or the Constitution. When that happens we’ve normalized gun fetishism as a form of mental illness that we refuse to recognize as illness. That is what the NRA is fighting for. They aren’t just fighting for a legal right, they are fighting for a sick society full of depraved people.
@FlipYrWhig: For the first time ever I tweeted someone. That twit Jay Carney saying now is not the time to talk about gun control. lets ask Tom Brady, Gabby Giffords, the victims of the Aurora Movie Theater when is the perfect time to talk about restricting access to something that rips you body open, tearing tissue and muscle and spewing blood all over. The children at the school need to know that SOMETHING WILL BE DONE to help prevent that ever happening again. Maybe as we lose the survivors of the Holocaust we should adapt their saying “Never again” “Never Forget”
@trollhattan: It just occurred to me that Oklahoma City may be the closest equivalent to today in terms of who the victims were.
@Teri: Unless something else has happened I think you mean James Brady.
Fuck that. I can’t imagine a better time to get up in his grille about addressing the fucking problem.
Thanks for linking to that excellent Ezra Klein article!
Every one of Klein’s twelve facts has links to other articles, graphics, or surveys. Highly recommended read for all (though would suggest staying out of the usual Kaplan TPD comment swamp).
Let’s think about that, she’s armed and her son comes in, also armed.
Yup, I see no difference outside of him having an extra gun.
@FlipYrWhig: “And, of course, there’s the weentsy little problem about a solution predicated on deterrence (i.e., no one would open fire for fear that someone nearby would fire back) in cases where the shooter is perfectly willing to end up dead, which quite a lot of them seem to be.”
This, this, a thousand times, this. A teacher packing heat who gets to the range maybe twice a year. She’s starting her day in front of 20 little kids doing what little kids do. A masked, armed and armored guy walks in and takes aim at you. Do you have the frame of mind and hand speed to pull that gun out of the top drawer of your desk and kill the guy. Or even a holster…and can you imagine teachers walking around classrooms with holsters.
Now, take all of the above, and make the guy taking aim at you the child you raised from birth to adulthood. Yup, really would have helped.
Same thing with the movie theater – a bunch of weekend warriors firing willy nilly into a smoke gas filled dark movie theater at a guy armored from head to toe really would have helped.
When these folks make the decision to kill a bunch of people, they’ve also made the decision to die. They will be be much more focused and determined than anybody at the scene who just happens to be packing. And the guy in Aurora, this guy, wouldn’t have changed their plans if that knew that every moviegoer had a gun or ever kid in that school was packing heat. Yeah, that might work with the would-be bank robber who is worried that there may be an armed guard at the branch he’s targeting – because his goal is to steal money, not kill people. Doesn’t deter somebody intent on killing a bunch of people and who doesn’t care if they live or die…and who actually may want to die.
@El Cid: desensatised by the blood, violence we visually see in movies, games tv. Yes it was in books too, but that mostly took you out of your own frame of reference. You had seen maybe a butchered hog, or killed a chicken yourself but today children see blood, guts splats etc and next week the hero is up and moving. They don’t see the physical wreck a bullet does to flesh and bone. They don’t see the pain and struggle for victims to learn how to walk, talk, learn to live again.
I think you should take classes, be licensed and be insured to own a gun. It should also have dna/id sensor technology so only registered owner would be able to fire it.
I also agree with Chris Rock who says we should make ammunition ridiculously expansive like five grand a round.
Signed, and thanks for linking to it. Horrible day.
@evinfuilt: I just don’t get what people imagine happens when a guy shows up bent on shooting someone or multiple someones. It’s not like he has to make a speech beforehand. He can just walk right in, raise the gun, and start firing. The person reacting will NEVER react fast enough. Element of surprise and all that.
@mdblanche: just my unnatural hatred of the patriots…
I’m done with this.
Repeal the Second Amendment.
Maybe Miss Coulter could be invited to share her ideas with the families of those kids. I’m sure she’d be glad to go in and explain the wisdom of keeping EVERYTHING JUST THE SAME except for ADDING TO THE NUMBER OF GUNS IN CLASSROOMS.
I. Just. Can’t.
There have been very few mass murders with that many victims, but the Amish School Shooting had victims of about the same age.
Culture of Truth
It’s not like he has to make a speech beforehand
Yeah I’ve never gotten it either. And yes these people don’t seem concerned about being killed in the act.
@FlipYrWhig: I actually love the idea of repositories, with the small exception of it being inconvenient for situations like “home defense.” Or “That sounds like a bear in the woods behind my house.”
Though, really a shot gun is all you need for both of those situations. Hand guns, assault rifles, and other items could easily be stored off site. And if a person checks out say, more than one gun at a time, or a semi-auto or something, they’d be subject to some high level surveillance and monitoring until they checked them back in.
Though the more you think about how such a concept would work is that it really brings into sharp focus is that, most days most people really REALLY don’t need a gun, especially not more than one.
@El Cid: I think you’re right. Canada has a lot of guns, but they’re mostly long guns, and people don’t get shot en masse nearly as often (she says, wincing at the recent anniversary of the Montreal Massacre). And I’m also thinking of Israel, where I went last year, and everybody there has got a gun or two, and teenagers off-duty in the military take their Uzis to the beach with them (because they have to), and people don’t seem to get shot en masse by some random psychopath there, either, not nearly as often, anyway.
I will say this — you as a country (speaking as a Canadian) have a bad habit of moral panics, and that includes people getting all het up about all kinds of weird stuff, and I do think that contributes.
Read the entire statement that Carney said.
You missed it.
It’s the end of the statement that matters.
Stop lecturing. Things are bad enough today.
@Culture of Truth:
Those are issues, among others, that poll high among NRA members.
The NRA is an industry lobby, not some kinda 2nd amendment ACLU.
Yes, I had forgotten about that.
@Maude: Yeah I am a bit heated, but I am fucking tired of pass the bucket bullshit…
There will be no meaningful action.
There are 45 single victim homicides in America every day. That’s like one CT every 14 hours.
So I repeat, there will be no meaningful action.
As someone who would love to see meaningful gun control enacted, let me point out there are two parts to these horrors.
One is the ready availability of firearms.
The other is the lack of assistance for people who are in the early to mid stages of losing their minds.
I take it as axiomatic that mass murderers are crazy. It seems that we keep hearing they were, if not already diagnosable, then very stressed and had been for a long time. People on the edge have no resilience, and it takes very little to send them the rest of the way.
It also seems to me that people who’ve been fighting insanity for a while, when they do lose the fight, lose it in a big way. They have years of pent-up rage and terror all coming out at once, and what follows is apocalyptic.
There was just a guy from Mother Jones on NPR talking about a series he’s been working on about gun violence in America. Using statistics from the last 30 years, he stated this was the worst year yet, both in terms of frequency of these events and in terms of number of deaths.
I’m getting a bit of a different vibe today than I did after Columbine, or Tucson, or Aurora, or the Sikh temple in Wisconsin, or the mall in Portland. Today I’m getting a real sense of “ENOUGH.” A real sense of “WE’RE MAD AS HELL AND WE’RE NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANY MORE.” I think today’s tragedy just might prove to be the hinge point this country needs to start taking real action, confronting the NRA and their apologists, and enacting some rational gun/ammo control measures with some teeth in them. It won’t happen overnight, and there will be more tragedies and horrors before we get some kind of balanced approach to this — maybe not for many decades yet — but it just feels different this time.
I think you are right. This is so horrible.
Kurt Weldon said this over at Charlie Pierce’s place earlier:
I support the Second Amendment and the right to individual gun ownership. Always have. Always will.
But as a former cops reporter, I can tell you that the notion of the American as “responsible gun owner” is much more of a myth than the NRA and even law enforcement would have you believe. Just for starters, how many firearms larcenies did I see paperwork on in my years as a cops reporter? Hundreds. And of those larcenies, how many were from locked vehicles or gun safes? I can count ’em on one hand.
Neither I nor any sane human being would argue that the American people, armed as they are now (roughly 88 firearms per 100 Americans), constitutes a well-regulated militia.
And the NRA is not, individually or collectively, sane human beings. After Jovan Belcher killed Kasandra Perkins, spokesman Wayne LaPierre said she’d be alive if she had had a gun. Well, Wayne, Belcher and Perkins were gun enthusiasts; they had eight between them. Fat lot of good it did her.
@Culture of Truth:
Let’s just get the bullshit out of the Gun Show Loopholes, first.
@Culture of Truth: No. No he shouldn’t.
I don’t want Joe Biden to be president yet.
@Shinobi: Yeah, it’d be very bad for the idea of the gun for self-defense. I’m OK with that, personally, but I’m guessing that not everyone would be.
@SiubhanDuinne: I just mailed in my life time NRA patch saying that unless they worked with the government to fix gun laws I was done supporting them.
@Paul (@princejvstin): agreed it goes against the rights if citizens to life
@Teri: The second amendment starts with “A well regulated ….”
I’m guessing that meant “trained” at the time it was written. Why are these the first three words if gun ownership was meant to come without gun responsibility?
How has the NRA gotten away with promoting responsibility-free gun ownership for so long? You can’t own a car without liability insurance but you can own a machine which has killing as its one and only purpose without liability insurance?
So tax, require insurance, or require owners to show up every Saturday on the village green for muster and drill. But require some sort of responsibility on the part of gun owner.
And please, all gun owners, divest yourself of the NRA. Sick bunch of Nugent worshiping gun fondlers.
One thing about the NRA. I keep seeing these reports that even a majority of members of the NRA back common-sense gun control measures… but they seem to keep electing the same gun-nut leadership over-and-over. What’s going on with the leadership elections within that group? Anyone ever take a serious look at that?
@hitchhiker: Maybe if we are real lucky, that bitch will fall into the toilet and drown, when she throws up that cracker she had for lunch. Stupid sick cow…
and @teri – fucking read the entire thing Carney said before you start your fucking tweet shit. This is fucked up day, and having an asshole party on Twitter is so not what I am interested in reading about. Jesus…
@LAC: Yes I was a little heated, but I too am a parent. A parent who also has to deal with gun trauma on a daily basis. So yes today is fucked up…but it never stops….ever. So ENOUGH, no more equivocating, apologizing, rationalizing. ENOUGH. Today is a the day we talk about gun violence, and tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow until you can explain to one of the little 5 year old children who saw their friends head explode next to them that it will not happen again.
And yes I realize that means better mental health screening but if you have to take lessons, tests and have insurance to drive a 4500 pound death machine then you should also have to do it to own a 12 gauge shotgun.
And for fuck’s sake, elections have consequences. We need to be electing folks who aren’t spending their times, pants around the ankles, waiting for an organization like the NRA to ram it in with a check to follow. We are country of god damn laws! That means that whining about whether the President should shake a fist at the NRA doesn’t get the job done. Gun laws need to be stronger, and we need to elect folks who are going to do this and not worry about the ratings from the gun nut lobby.
I am so fucking tired of this happening, and I am fucking tired of left and right in this country getting into their respective idiot mobiles to start deflecting shit and arguing semantics.
I am so mad and disgusted, I can’t see straight. That poor school…
I grew up with a father who owned guns and who was a member of the NRA and just as shrill as any of them. My mother made him unload the guns and lock them in a steamer trunk. when my sibs and I were little. To my father’s credit, he did teach us how to load and unload when we got old enough, and he was fanatic that you never pointed a gun at anyone, even a cap pistol, unless you intended to kill them. So fortunately, there were no gun accidents in our home while I was growing up.
I’m 66 years old. I have yet to encounter a situation in my life where a gun would have been useful. I don’t hunt. My house has been broken into 4 times (doors locked every time) but the thieves did not wish to encounter the home owners so they always broke in when nobody was there. I’ve never had anyone break into the house with intent to do bodily harm to me, for which I’m grateful. And if someone did break in, I doubt that I would have time to get a gun and use it.
I would like to see gun registration, and a prior requirement that one take an authorized gun safety course before being able to own a gun. Strict background checks. I would also like to see stiffer penalties for people who commit crimes with their guns, as opposed to gunless crimes. Semi-automatics and Uzis and the like should not be sold for private ownership.
None of these measures would completely get rid of the danger of some crazy asshole being on a shooting spree, but the number of accidental gun deaths and injuries would decrease, which is a good thing.
Some people worry that if gun registration were required, our government or a foreign government would come in and confiscate their guns like the Nazis did in WWII. My reply to that is, if you’re a member of the NRA, you’re in their database. If I were an invading foreign power, I would have hacked the NRA database prior to invading, which would mean easy confiscation of probably the majority of privately-owned guns in this country.
The only one to get meaningful gun control laws passed in this country is to start exercising our Second Amendment rights at Republicans and pundits.
The 1960s California Black Panthers say oh hey, does anybody remember us?
No, no, no, ten thousand times no to a security state. I will not be hustled through metal detectors, have my stuff searched, my body groped, and my crotch sniffed by jumbo police dogs, all because we won’t take guns from nutters.
It’s time to focus on the problem, by putting the “well-regulated militia” clause back into the 2nd Amendment. We need real gun control, and if the Supreme Court strikes it down, we need to re-enact it again and again until they get the message.
I had always owned firearms, being raised in gun clinging territory, firing my first weapon at about 8 or 9 years old. I sold off my last gun in about 2006, a copy of the old Winchester 30 30. I was running around so pissed at republicans, it just didn’t seem like a good idea to be armed as well. I don’t want anymore guns, though hiking in the forest, sometimes I get to worrying about mountain lions, and the thought of packing would be okay.
Besides, I got 14 pounds of pure canine fury to protect me.
@ThatLeftTurnInABQ: I was going to add that. Unfortunately, we have ways of making the way that black men yield guns extra illegal, so it wouldn’t go far. But yes, one way to get the majority on the side of gun control is to arm black men and have them display those arms whenever possible, in accordance with the law, of course.
The other way would be to bring back the well regulated militia. If we had a requirement that middle class men had to join the national guard and participate three or four weekends a year in training, no excuses for being “busy with my important job”, no way to buy out of it, we would quickly have amendments passed to strike language from the constitution.
Is that a compact version of Larson’s Dobie-o-Matic? I could see one of those, loaded with a JRT.
Jack the Second
@El Cid: Eh, I don’t think it’s quite just us. I think we’ve got some friends in the fucking insane club.
But I think that element you’re looking for is strong in-groups/out-groups within our own country and states and towns and communities. It’s not a fit for every mass shooting or case of violence, but once you divide the world into “us” and “them” it’s a lot easier to hate “them” and do violence towards “them”. There are some countries which are more homogenous and have fewer out-groups within their own borders (at least after they killed them all), but there are plenty of other countries besides the US where one part of the population has a burning hatred for another part.
It’s not healthy. While some sensible gun control could at least cut down on the mass shootings, in the end we need to stop viewing our fellow humans as “thems”. We need to just think of all people everywhere as “us”. As the song says, “Everybody get together, try to love one another right now.”
@Teri: If you make commercial ammo ridiculously expensive you’ll make people who own reloading equipment very happy, because they’ll all become rich making and selling black-market ammo, but I don’t think much else would change. I agree with the person who said the root problem is not guns, it’s America. That person cited Switzerland . I can cite America 60 years ago. I wasn’t there but people I know who were say armed young men were quite common , going hunting or plinking . It would never have occurred to them to fire on a person. Find and fix whatever has gone wrong in the last 60 years; all those guns out there are not only out there to stay, unless you conduct house-to-house confiscation , they’re somewhat of a red herring .
I found it tragically ironic that this massacre occurred in a wealthy community. While watching the news coverage, it occurred to me that had this school been in the slums, it would probably have metal detectors. The lesson, I guess, is that we fix whatever’s gone wrong with the soul of America, there is no one who may not be next, no matter how rich or poor.
And that, perhaps, may in itself enough to start Americans finally looking in the mirror.
Er, until we fix, etc. Sorry.
Also too, FYWP. That is all.
This is grief pornography.
If money and ideology demand — you’ll get dead people wholesale.
Just happened to be kindergarteners this time.
The gun culture is just part of the larger cultural paradigm of winner/loser, each man standing on his own, lack of community, lone gunfighter that is ravaging this country. As bad as this shooting is, we lost 26 people including children, each year we lose 45,000 people, including children, from a lack of healthcare and there are those among us who think they deserve it. Darwinistic capaitalism sets the stage for tragedies like this.
I agree with having insurance. I also think states should tax the hell out of guns and ammo. Make it expensive to own. Also, make it expensive to get a license and pay a renewal fee every year. Kind of like cars or something. Maybe then states can then fund mental health.
@Teri: Wow. Good for you. I get that it’s a symbolic gesture, but symbolic gestures can speak loudly.
I feel as though we (meaning the Juicetariat, not specifically you and me) discussed this once before, but there was a West Wing scene once where Josh and a Congressional aide or someone are talking about gun control, and the line has always stuck with me.
Ah, here it is:
I’d rather he got really angry, and summoned some of those flag waving gun runners who call themselves congressmen to the White House for a little face time about mental health and assault weapons.
Sorry, but since the president sent out his secretary to say that now is not the time to talk about the gun problem, he gets no sympathy from me for his tears. And no, press secretaries do not act on their own; their every word is carefully planned by the White House staff (at least, what they say in the prepared part of their remarks).
I remember during Vietnam that nightly news stopped showing all the war footage because it was turning people off of war. The movies and video games are not real and people know that. That is what desensitizes people, never seeing the real thing. You sound like a health professional who has seen a lot of the real thing. Has it desensitized you? Or has it made you hate it all the more because you actually know how bad it really is? I think from your posts that it is the second. You are correct that we have been desensitized but it’s lack of exposure to reality not fake move crap which romanticizes death and dying. I have held a human in my arms as he died. I have seen people up close and personal die violent deaths. There is nothing romantic about it and it is not like even the best actors portray at all.
@Joe Buck: fuck off, douche rag
I never thought I’d see Pres. Obama , the epitome of the strong silent type, weep in public. I was moved.
@El Cid: It’s a violent and alienated culture. A tribal culture with some powerful and particularly vicious tribes, vicious because they are continually kicking people out of the tribe that are perceived as being weak. Individualism pits everybody against everybody else. Lack of compassion is a sickness. And it’s killing our nation.
@Joe Buck: Even the President of the United States gets to be in shock when this happens. I saw a barely controllable rage underneath that grief. And here is some more of that. Fuck you, you judgmental shithead.
inb4 “just words”
Fix the country? Heck yeah. But how? Honestly, I don’t think any one thing — better mental health care, more restrictions on gun ownership, less focus on violence — will be the answer all by itself. I think it needs to be all of them. It’s going to be hard work.