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My Recent Comments
Searched for "the Clinton ban did reduce the number of mass murders" (without the quotes). The very first response came to the following conclusion: "It's possible that the federal assault weapon ban did some good -- but if it did, the effect was so subtle that even at a national level, statisticians couldn't measure it over a 24 month period and honestly say, 'Yes, it seems to be helping.' " Senator Feinstein's updated assault weapons bill will ban rifles with thumbhole stocks. This is not an attempt to reduce crime. I don't even know what to call it. The Rifle Fashion Police?
Whenever I hear someone say "You don't NEED" to own this or that, it's a red flag. It tells me that the speaker wants to restrict my freedoms by enforced government regulation. First it would be you don't need a 30 round magazine, then you don't need a rifle with a pistol grip, then you don't need hollow point bullets, and finally, you don't need a gun at all. Gun control is not about guns - it's about control.
"The other side of the argument" is the wrong side for the majority of Americans. Sure, everyone wants to lower the number of shooting deaths, but disarming law abiding citizens is not the right response. Locking up the homicidal maniacs and providing protection for the vulnerable areas of society would be an excellent start.6 months ago
What needs to stop is the idea that we can somehow wish this away, or just ignore it until it disappears. The American response to every school shooting is "head, meet sand." Nothing changes, and we all try to think about something else until the next school shooting, and nothing changes after that, and so it goes. Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. We have to stop the continuing school shootings, and we know very well how to do that. Will we have the courage to defend our children from the next crazed killer, or will we end up with our heads in the sand again?6 months ago
All it really takes is training. Law enforcement officers in Arizona go through an annual "judgmental shooting" scenario where they are presented with a situation and they have to decide what to do. If they shoot and they weren't supposed to, or they don't shoot and they WERE supposed to, it indicates their judgment is flawed and their ability to carry a gun is revoked. You'd be surprised at how fast your finger goes to the trigger when you see muzzle flashes and hear gunshots, even on the movie screen. I have no doubt that the same reaction would happen in a real shooting. Anyone carrying a gun in school would need to demonstrate correct judgment or their ability would be revoked as well.
What I keep hearing in this debate from the anti-gun crowd is basically "I would rather see my child die than see a teacher carrying a gun." But what they're really saying is "I would rather see YOUR child die than see a teacher carrying a gun," and that is where many parents are going to lose interest in the gun control argument. Someone armed and trained needs to be in the school right now, today, to protect those kids, before the next copycat spree killer completes his plans. And do you think Al Qaeda hasn't been paying careful attention to this topic? 6 months ago
As usual where firearms are involved, a rational solution is often met with irrational responses. Let's look at some of the possible solutions:
- Do nothing - Obviously this will not decrease the number of campus shootings.
- Increase physical security - Access control and metal detectors won't help when the killer can just shoot out a window or steal an access card. You have to assume that there's an armed bad guy inside your school at this very moment.
- Police officers in schools - If they're already assigned, that's great. If not, it will be expensive. They aren't allowed to work as law enforcement volunteers, and overtime rules would apply. We couldn't afford one in every school.
- Change society - End all violence in the US by enforced pacifism. Think "Millenium Man." That may work if you want to wait hundreds of years for the result.
- Put all homicidal maniacs behind bars - Not possible as long as people listen to the ACLU's whining about privacy and "deinstitutionalization." Violent goblins are allowed to roam our streets freely until the voices in their heads tell them to start shooting.
- Reinstitute the Assault Weapons Ban - That worked so well at Columbine, didn't it? Eric Harris carried a carbine and thirteen 10-round magazines, a legal configuration under the Clinton ban. He fired 96 rounds with that carbine. The ban didn't work then and it won't work in the future.
- Ban and confiscate all firearms - Another hundred-year wait for the solution and no guarantee there won't be millions of guns cached away. Also, there's that pesky Constitution to deal with. Firearms can't be un-invented.
Now let's consider something that is working already:
- Place armed volunteers in schools - This would be a program similar to the Federal Flight Deck Officer (FFDO) Program that puts armed pilots in cockpits. Call for volunteers. Develop a list of approved guns and ammunition that they can carry (they have to supply their own weapons). Put them through extensive firearms training (classroom and range time). Require them to requalify at the firing range and go through judgmental shooting scenarios annually like any police officer. DON'T require the weapon to be locked up in some central location that could be at the opposite end of the school from the active shooter (the purpose of the program is not to have unarmed volunteers).
The FFDO Program has been in place for ten years and has qualified thousands of armed pilots. It's time to implement a similar program in our schools. Right now, the vast majority of schools have no defense at all against an armed shooter, because school employees are disarmed by law. We need to give them the means to defend themselves and their students against the next Eric Harris or Adam Lanza. As someone said recently, "The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun."6 months ago