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This is Caroline Previdi, 6 years old, who was murdered yesterday in Newton:

caroline

Her father, Jeff Previdi, was a graduate of Bethany College, the town I live in. He was my mother’s student (she taught there for over 30 years), and additionally, he was a member of Beta Theta Pi, the fraternity that is across the street from the house I grew up in. My mother was the Beta fraternity advisor for a decade or so, and Jeff was one of her advisees.

She was murdered in cold blood by some lunatic who got his weapons of mass destruction from his mother, who is now being described as a “gun enthusiast” and “gun collector” and survivalist. That little girl is dead because some jackass had a crazy kid and a gun fetish.

In another close call, my neighbor down the street for years, Bob Sandercox, who was the VP of Bethany College for 40 years, had a grandson who was also in the school, but miraculously survived.

So in my town of 350 people, there are two connections to the horrible violence that occurred yesterday hundreds and hundreds of miles away. When these events happen, no one is left untouched. This sickness, the obeisance and fealty to the NRA, the tea party lunatics, and “gun enthusiasts,” has got to stop.

The right of Mrs. Lanza to own a shitload of guns and sire a child with mental health issues with easy access to those guns should not trump the right of Caroline Previdi to make it 2nd grade.

This has to end. This has to stop. And outraged blog posts are not going to do it. Money will. There needs to be a coordinated effort to fund the Brady Campaign and other gun control groups in the way that the NRA is funded, so congresscritters will listen. We have got to stop this violence. We need to shame gun enthusiasts who put their penis extensions ahead of sensible gun laws that might help keep their fellow citizens alive. We need to make it so have an NRA sticker on your car is as toxic as claiming membership in the KKK.

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147 replies
  1. 1

    What you said John. This has to stop. It has to stop now.

  2. 2
    Melissa says:

    I’m reduced to one word, which doesn’t seem so lame a comment in the context. This. This this this this this.

    That is all.

  3. 3
    Strandedvandal says:

    I agree with you 100%. However I have seen nothing that indicates that these gun nuts have any sense of shame at all.

  4. 4
    suzanne says:

    Can we do a Balloon Juice donation, similar to the ActBlue things we did before the election?

    She looks like my daughter. And I’m crying again.
    Comfort to all her loved ones, which is nowhere near enough.

  5. 5
    SteveinSC says:

    I posted this on the Mike Huckabee Thread. “I can’t tell you how dark this thing has been to me. We can have fun with the fat-fucks like Huckabee and the Falwell xristo-fascists, but we really need to hunker down and get this fucking outrage fixed. We all need to find a single point to work through and make this shit count. I don’t know if its Kos, or MoveOn or who as focal point, but a concentrated and relentless effort needs to get started. Enough is fucking enough.” I only gave $500 to re-elect Obama and I gave it to MoveOn instead because I want some real blood out of the Repukes. My wife and I have another $500 maybe $1000 to give to this. The only question I have is above.

  6. 6
    Alison says:

    Agreed, John. We’ve got to put our money where our mouths are on this.

    Link to Brady Campaign donation page: https://secure2.convio.net/mmm/site/Donation?ACTION=SHOW_DONATION_OPTIONS&CAMPAIGN_ID=1102

    Like many others, I can only spare a tiny bit, but every dollar helps, folks.

  7. 7
    Louise says:

    Yes. I want everyone who fights for the right to own assault rifles to be ashamed. I want the politicians who take money from the gun lobby to cower. It is far past time to turn this argument around.

    I am hoping that every gun that mother had was obtained legally, so there are no excuses. While there should be conversations about mental health coverage and access, we cannot let that become the conversation that trumps gun control.

    And I’m sure this has been covered here already (I’m only now coming online), anyone who lets this be about autism spectrum disorders is an idiot. Not only will it obscure the important issues here, it will smear millions of children who don’t need any more complications in their lives. Piers and Joe S. need to STFU.

  8. 8
    Violet says:

    What a beautiful little girl. How incredibly awful this whole thing is. Heartbreaking.

    We need to shame gun enthusiasts who put their penis extensions ahead of sensible gun laws that might help keep their fellow citizens alive. We need to make it so have an NRA sticker on your car is as toxic as claiming membership in the KKK.

    Yep. Making owning a gun and supporting the NRA a sign of weakness and limp dick-ness is a good way to go.

  9. 9
    West of the Rockies (formerly Frank W.) says:

    What an insane, ludicrous waste of human life. Look at that little girl with all of life ahead of her! This is heart-breaking and stupefying, and given a chance to at least try to avoid such events in the future, gun-nuts will begin (have begun!) whining about their precious 2nd Amendment rights being jeopardized by even talking about gun control.

  10. 10
    MikeInSewickley says:

    Here’s another idea it is crazy but I read this over at the Atlantic and James Fallows. He had a reader send this in.

    “Since I heard about the shooting in Newtown, I’ve been considering joining the NRA. I have no interest in owning a handgun and I’m against concealed weapons and am ambivalent about what the “right to bear arms” means.

    However, if 100,000 people like me joined the NRA, could we change the composition of their board of directors? Could we encourage the NRA to focus on gun safety, rather than on increased ownership? Could we “Tea Party” the NRA from the left?

    I believe there was a recent precedent in this sort of activism (from the right) when the Sierra Club was taken over by an anti-immigration group.”

    Does this seem remotely possible? Frankly I don’t think so as the NRA is a fake organization anyway dedicated to providing an extravagant lifestyle for the management (just like Congress). And these one percenters would figure some way to proxy such members into uselessness.

    But it is an idea – change from within.

  11. 11
    Violet says:

    Oh for fuck’s sake. I quoted John and it had the p3nis word in it. And now I’m in moderation. I’ll edit it:
    What a beautiful little girl. How incredibly awful this whole thing is. Heartbreaking.

    We need to shame gun enthusiasts who put their p3nis extensions ahead of sensible gun laws that might help keep their fellow citizens alive. We need to make it so have an NRA sticker on your car is as toxic as claiming membership in the KKK.

    Yep. Making owning a gun and supporting the NRA a sign of weakness and limp dick-ness is a good way to go.

  12. 12
    Eric says:

    What strikes me is the contrast with how we treat alcohol. Give alcohol to a minor, it’s a crime. Servekcohol to someone who drives drunk and you can be held accountable.

    I don’t have a problem with people owning guns, but with rights come responsibility. If you own a gun ou are responsible for it. The kid in Oregon stole the gun from a friend. I wonder how hard that was? He probably just took it out of a closet.

    For a start:

    We should make it mandatory that if you own a gun it is kept locked where only you can access it. If someone uses your gun to commit a crime and it is determined that you didn’t have it adequately secured then you are criminally libel.

    If you are the custodial adult for someone with mental health issues you need to ensure that they dont have access to your guns.

    Gun dealers need to held accountable for who they sell to in the same way bar tenders are for who they serve. Background checks need to be standardized and dealers held accountable for enforcing them.

    Guns with no useful hunting or self defense purpose need to be banned. I don’t care if it is a fun hobby for some to shoot them, drag racing on public streets is fun too, but we rightly ban it.

  13. 13
    Shadow's Mom says:

    This.

    Brady campaign seems the right starting point since they’ve already spent years building the framework. I am fortunate in my life and I can commit $100.00 today and an ongoing monthly donation.

    @alison: Thanks for the link; I hope everyone who reads this blog commits to some donation or advocacy work to stop the failure of public interest controls that could help to stop these senseless and horrific mass shootings.

  14. 14
    Libby says:

    Not a pendant but grew up in that part of CT. It’s New-Town. It bothers the locals when you get it wrong.

  15. 15
    Ken J. says:

    I’ll stake out a contrary position.

    I thought we promised the loonies that Obama wasn’t going to take their guns. We poked fun when the loonies made runs on the gun stores. Now, you want Obama to take their guns, thus validating all their craziness.

    We can have a couple of years of gun control, but I think the price for that is GOP sweeps at the federal and state level in 2014 and President Santorum in 2016. Think the last two weeks from the Michigan legislature, written nationwide.

    Politically, I’m tired of dying on the gun control hill. (A metaphor I have chosen very deliberately.) Yes, we are a very sick society. Gonna have to fix that before we can start disarming the crazies.

    (I’ve had four friends and acquaintances killed by handguns, starting with one of my high school antagonists, shot at school in 1973, ahead of his time. One other murder, one accident, one suicide.)

  16. 16

    @MikeInSewickley:

    That is a brilliant idea! If enough voting members vote for gun control what can the NRA do?

  17. 17
    Libby says:

    Adding, I’m shell-shocked and outraged too. It’s so horrible I can hardly bear to even think about it for too long at once.

  18. 18
    Hungry Joe says:

    For the last decade+, Democratic officeholders in all but the bluest districts have shied away from sensible gun-control positions — and for good reason: It meant almost certain defeat, thanks to NRA funds pouring into opponents’ coffers in response. We have to counter this via some organization/movement that supports serious gun-control officeholders/seekers with serious campaign contributions. We can bury the NRA.

  19. 19
    Violet says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt: What can they do? Well…stop allowing members to vote on issues. Make it so long-time members are the only ones with voting rights. Make sure you own a gun to be a member. Switch to having the board make all the decision. Etc., etc. They can easily find a way to take members’ money and pay no attention to what they want.

  20. 20
    SteveinSC says:

    @Hungry Joe: “We can bury the NRA. I’ll piss on its grave.” Seriously, we need to be able to track what’s happening and John Cole was in Desert Storm, so lead for fuck’s sake.

  21. 21
    Rosie Outlook says:

    My condolences, John, to you, the Previdi family, and to all the other bereaved.

    I did have an idea which I will throw out on the off chance it may be helpful. One report that said the school was designated as a Gun Free Zone (don’t recall the exact wording). I know this gun-free, drug-free zone stuff is intended to reassure parents, and I do sympathize, but I really
    don’t think it’s wise to make this known to any nut with a rifle. Maybe such signs should come down?

    I myself would be inclined to put up do-you-feel-lucky-punk signs, something to the effect of “Armed police patrol this school almost every day.” Let Mr. Prospective Mass Murderer ponder that one for a while.

  22. 22
    MikeInSewickley says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt: One problem is that they would have an influx of money that they could use to influence the simple minded around America and D.C. long before our votes could make a difference.

    I like the idea, though. The other one I saw on Crooks and Liars.

    Everyone with guns buy mandatory gun insurance rated based on gun type and use. True hunting rifles and shotguns – low rate. Glocks – high rate. Assault rifle – exorbitant rate. I don’t see how they can complain. You pay a high rate for a Ferrari but small penis men can still buy them.

    Also if you use the gun illegally or unwisely, like driving DUI, you lose your insurance and the gun for an extended period of time.

    The last idea I remember from a Chris Rock show. He said you want to stop senseless shooting, make the ammo $5,000 a bullet. “Sure as hell wouldn’t be spraying bullets everywhere. Shit, you try and dig the bullet out of a bystander at that price.” I know you can do your own loading but only true gun people go to that much trouble. The monsters like the kid yesterday always buy ready made. Then the next step would be ATF to track and monitor the black market that would spring up – and it would.

    Just some ideas.

  23. 23
    Anya says:

    It’s so heartbreaking. I really feel angry and hopeless.

  24. 24
    Gogiggs says:

    The last time I felt so gut-punched by the news was 9/11. That picture just punched me all over again. What a beautiful little girl. The thought of what happened to her is just sickening. I start to think about it and I flinch away mentally. The horror of it just feels too big.

    I hope this marks a turning point, that this is finally horrible enough that we do something.

  25. 25
    SteveinSC says:

    @MikeInSewickley: They don’t need a black market they reload their own.

  26. 26
    Alison says:

    Jesus fuck, apparently the Westboro monsters are planning to show up at the funerals. I sure hope there will be a HUGE counter protest to protect the families from these repugnant sacks of garbage :( :(

  27. 27
    chopper says:

    seriously, fuck this culture.

  28. 28

    We need to make it so have an NRA sticker on your car is as toxic as claiming membership in the KKK.

    That’s the point I made down-thread in John’s post linking to that Obsidian Wings post. My comment used a naughty word and got hung up in moderation tho.

    That item he linked to made some really interesting points about the difference between homicide and mass shootings, mainly that mass shootings are white-on-white crimes, and usually men-on-women. The connection to the macho/lizard brain gun culture is obvious.

    I suggested that some public shaming might be in order, of the kind we used to get Hummers off the road. You know, “sorry to hear about your pen1s” type stuff.

  29. 29
    Hungry Joe says:

    @Alison:

    apparently the Westboro monsters are planning to show up at the funerals.

    That would not end well.

  30. 30
    amy c says:

    My son turns six tomorrow. We are hundreds of miles from Newtown and know nobody there, but I’m already sick thinking about sending him to school on Monday. Rationally, I know that any municipality that can afford to will post law enforcement near the schools. And mine can afford to. Rationally, I know that the secretaries will be extra vigilant about keeping the doors locked. Rationally, I know that I can’t keep my son home forever. And still my soul carries this panic.

    This fear is toxic. This fear will ruin us. It cannot become the new normal.

    Throw everything you have at this. Whatever power the front pagers have around here to organize people and command eyeballs, please use it and don’t shut up. Be relentless. Please. Use this platform – tell us where to send money, who to call, where to go – the same way you were on our case constantly during the election to make phone calls and canvass and donate.

  31. 31
    debbie says:

    Some might think it’s an invasion of privacy, but I think the world needs to see a smiling photo of each and every child, and then ask them if they matter less than their stupid firearm.

  32. 32
    Violet says:

    @Alison: Those WBC people are such monsters. When did they become such a big thing? I don’t remember then always being on the scene doing this sort of crap. When did they start?

  33. 33
    Patricia Kayden says:

    My condolences to the Previdis and others who lost their children yesterday.

    And yes, we need to support the Brady Campaign and other gun control organizations. Something has got to change. Otherwise, we’ll be doing this again and again. The NRA needs to be neutralized.

  34. 34
    Rosie Outlook says:

    @Ken J.: My condolences to you as well, Ken. And I agree with you. I will go further and say that gun control of the type most Juicers want is just not politically possible at this time, especially under a black President. I find this tragically ironic, since blacks are murdered at a far higher rate than whites, but that’s the way it is right now. I would prefer getting mental health care restored to at least an early 20th century level in this country (without the lobotomies). Is anyone up for collecting and lobbying for that?

  35. 35
    MikeInSewickley says:

    @SteveinSC: Most true gun enthusiasts would.

    I’m thinking about the people that buy a gun on the “spur of the moment” as it were.

    I would think it would also think young adults and old idiots would not want to spend big money on ammo. Both would probably go to a Guns R Us tent to get cheap ammo.

    Driving reloads into the same category as moonshine might work.

  36. 36
    debbie says:

    The connection to the macho/lizard brain gun culture is obvious.

    I think it’s all to do with the prefrontal cortex. Either they’re not fully developed or they’re mal-developed. Maybe some men never end up with fully developed cortexes and they’re the ones swaggering around with guns.

  37. 37
    JPL says:

    @Libby: My son was born in 1978 and although I lived in Ridgefield at the time, my ob was in Newtown because they had two midwives working for them.
    also, too.. danbury hospital was great.. my eldest wasn’t quite two so could not visit at the time and the nurses taught me how to change his age.. teehee…

  38. 38
    Trakker says:

    John, that noise you hear from the back of the room is me, on my feet, giving you a standing O! I hope at least one of the parents of the children murdered yesterday, after the grieving, will get super-pissed and take on the ugly, greedy, assholes who pimp children’s murder for their gain, and wipe the sewers with their bloated carcasses, starting with the NRA.

  39. 39
    cathyx says:

    I live near the mall in Oregon that recently had the shooting of random people for no reason. So this hits close to home too so soon after what we experienced here. It’s too much.

  40. 40
    Calming Influence says:

    Find your representative. Tell them taking money from the NRA makes them complicit.

  41. 41
    J says:

    Thank you for this post, John.

    I would like to see the NY Times (and not only them) do something like this: print a story about each victim and each family as they did for the victims after 9/11. One a day, on the front page. It would be a small thing, but it would keep this terrible event in the public mind for at least a little while before we ‘move on’ to the next bit of contrived idiocy.

  42. 42
    Edo says:

    I can’t respond to anyone directly because my phone sucks, but I’m gonna disagree with any talk of reforming the NRA.

    Before the NRA gets fixed, it needs *breaking.*

  43. 43
    Alison says:

    @Violet: According to wiki, the church itself opened with Phelps as the lead pastor in 1956 as a branch of another church, but the picketing stuff doesn’t seem to have started until 1991. Not sure why exactly then…they are so incredibly awful, and they seem to love being so. Disgusting.

  44. 44
    MikeInSewickley says:

    @Hungry Joe: I hope they do.

    I suspect the police would somehow be looking somewhere else as a group of parents/bikers/vets beat the ever loving shit out of them.

  45. 45

    @Violet:

    Yeah well then the people who have joined will vote on the board of directors, there is nothing they can do about that, and then the board of directors will vote for gun control. We have just proved in this last election that you can put all sorts of problems in place to stop people voting and they will push back and vote in their millions. THIS is the thing to do, we all join the NRA, we outnumber the gun owners and we vote!

  46. 46
    Shadow's Mom says:

    @Ken J.: I don’t see any gun safety advocates asking for Obama to take anyone’s guns away from them. What I want is for guns to be regulated to the same degree as car ownership and driver’s licenses. A few ideas:

    1) Annual registration of all guns in your possession (these are, after all, deadly weapons in the wrong hands).
    2) Periodic safety training to retain your registration (just as the pilots, safety officers, medical personnel in whom we entrust our lives must do)
    3) Liability insurance if you own multiple guns, particularly if they are high-capacity, semi-automatic.
    4)Ban further sales of high-capacity magazines. For shooting enthusiasts who want to use these at gun ranges, they could be borrowed during practice sessions.

    For God’s sake, we regulate over the counter cold medicine, why can we not find a way to protect public safety with sensible gun laws.

  47. 47
    majii says:

    @Louise:
    Right, Louise,
    I’m a retired high school teacher. I taught kids with autism spectrum disorders, and not one of them has committed an atrocity of the type that Adam Lanza committed on yesterday. Not one.

  48. 48
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Alison:

    Not sure why exactly then…they are so incredibly awful, and they seem to love being so. Disgusting.

    AIDS. That was their original springboard.

  49. 49
    CW in LA says:

    I favor sensible gun control laws. At this point, I even favor harsh, reactionary laws that may not necessarily be sensible.

    But the reality is, there are too many guns floating around, and it’s quite likely to stuff this particular blood-soaked genie back in its bottle.

    But what we definitely need to do is make it so guns are no longer cool. I encourage everyone to support and propagate the meme that people who own guns are small, frightened little men with small, flaccid little dicks. Next time I run into someone bragging on the guns he owns (and it usually is a he), I hope I have the nerve to respond with something like, Oh, I’m sorry you’re impotent.

  50. 50
    J says:

    @J: PS. Perhaps they could retroactively do the same for the victims of the Aurora and other massacres.

  51. 51
    Rosie Outlook says:

    @Hungry Joe: I think the Westboro crowd had better let their freak flag fly elsewhere that day, or we might well see the revival of the bad old American lynch mob. And were that to happen, I doubt any jury would convict.

  52. 52
    Middle-Aged Fogey says:

    Completely agree.

    One small suggestion, at the fringes but useful in the framing portion of the debate: On “Up w/ Chris Hayes” this morning, one of the panelists pointed out that it would be better if we discussed “gun SAFETY” laws rather than “gun control” laws. This is a term that no one can rightfully disagree with, and it (somewhat) soothes (some of) the savage beasts who irrationally fear the spectre of Big Government busting down their door before they have a chance to lock and load.

    The debate will be long and loud, and there’s no guarantee of victory; any little thing that can apply pressure to the NRA and its absolutists should and must be employed. Repeat after the panelist: Gun SAFETY, Gun SAFETY, Gun SAFETY ….

  53. 53
    sharl says:

    @MikeInSewickley: This idea came up over in TBogg’s comments, and someone replied that NRA rank-and-file membership is already receptive to tigher controls. [Details weren’t provided, but I hope they include a ban on assault weapons and tigher control/monitoring of gun show sales.]

    The problem apparently is the wackaloon NRA leadership, who are undoubtedly well compensated by firearm manufacturers in some manner for being the willing public faces who are out front whenever shit like this happens.

    It doesn’t appear that NRA senior leadership is decided by direct membership elections, but rather via a Board of Directors. So one would need to see what kind of skullduggery is going on in that leadership selection process, to see if there is any way to remove the corruption via action from the membership ranks.

    I seem to recall reading in the distant past of failed membership insurgencies, but the only thing I could find from a quick-&-dirty search is accounts of insurgencies by folks who didn’t think NRA was nutty enough.

  54. 54
    Alison says:

    @Davis X. Machina: Ahh…that makes depressing sense.

  55. 55
    Louise says:

    @debbie: This.

  56. 56
    SteveinSC says:

    @CW in LA: “I hope I have the nerve to respond with something like, Oh, I’m sorry you’re impotent.” I think that has a lot to do with it, rubbing the precious, touching the precious, polishing the precious. Phallus that they don’t have. The only female gun-nut I ever knew of was a woman who had been sexually abused as a child and she said so.

  57. 57
    CW in LA says:

    For some reason I can’t edit my previous comment, but I wanted to acknowledge Southern Beale’s expressing about the same idea; I didn’t see it before I posted. But this makes me all the more optimistic this can be made into a Thing.

  58. 58
    Howard Beale IV says:

    Sadly, history isn’t on the side of those who want the preamble of the 2nd Amendment to have some real teeth and meaning behind it. Couple that with a USDOJ whose continued ‘deferred prosecutions’ against multinational corporations is so scared to give a company the equivalent of a Death Sentence for FEAR of causing another global economic meltdown, perhaps its time to come to realize that neither the Red or the Blue give a flying fuck about its citizenry, and the only way that anyone will really pay attention is to field a new party and pour money behind it for 2014 with its sole intent to repeal the 2nd Amendment.

  59. 59
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    FU john, I am on your side. why do you post this picture? So I will leave more tears on my sheets? I suspect it is so I will write even more letters that JoAnn Emerson will ignore. Mission accomplished.

    PS: I look at that face, I see my own son’s faces. I see my grand-daughter’s face. I see the faces of the daughters of a buddy of mine. And I fear. Not for me, I am beside the point.

  60. 60
    whidgy says:

    We need to shame gun enthusiasts who put their penis extensions ahead of sensible gun laws that might help keep their fellow citizens alive.

    And people wonder why gun owners don’t want to consider sensible restrictions.

  61. 61
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    @Rosie Outlook:

    People say that every time, but it never happens. I would not, personally, mind if Fred Phelps was beaten to a bloody pulp and his corpse left for the dogs and vultures, but then I’m not a very nice person when it comes to such things.

  62. 62
    cathyx says:

    Here is an article on the NRA funding.
    Despite the grassroots façade, there is much evidence to suggest that corporations that profit from unregulated gun use are propping up the NRA’s activities, much like how the tobacco lobby secretly funded “Smokers Rights’” fronts and libertarian anti-tax groups, or how polluters currently finance much of the climate change skepticism movement.

  63. 63
    Schlemizel says:

    @MikeInSewickley:

    Don’t kid yourself. The NRA is controlled by the manufacturers. They would no more let sane people take control of their beloved PR organization than they would let coloreds into their neighborhood

  64. 64
    ryk says:

    @amy c: Exactly. The fear is toxic. These spree killers are America’s version of terrorist suicide bombers.

  65. 65
    MikeInSewickley says:

    @Middle-Aged Fogey: I think it was Nate Silver who said yesterday that there has been a distinct lessening of the term “gun control” since the mid 90s. And “gun ban” is plain invisible.

    But “gun safety”? That’s winner.

    Anytime someone pushes the meme you’re trying to take away my guns – we say “Why no! I just want you to be safer when you use your guns and that all new gun owners are safe users! Don’t you want to be a better gun owner?”

    Sounds corny but the simple idea of making “liberal” sound the same as “communist” worked wonders for the wingnuts.

  66. 66
    whidgy says:

    “I don’t see any gun safety advocates asking for Obama to take anyone’s guns away from them.”

    Just read this thread. If “assault weapons” are outlawed and you continue to own one and it’s discovered you’ll be charged with a felony and the weapon will be confiscated.

    That’s exactly what happened here in California when SKS variants (a type of “assault rifle”) were banned. You had 30 days to turn them in, you could NOT resell them in the state, and after that it was a felony charge.

  67. 67
    Anne Laurie says:

    Gun SAFETY regulation, not ‘gun control’.

    Guns are for grown-ups. If you’re not mature enough to handle/store/control a gun safely, you don’t deserve to have one. And it’s not enough to believe you’re mature enough, any more than we let twelve-year-olds buy beer or fourteen-year-olds drive cars.

    I’ve never owned a gun and I never intend to, but there are lots of sane grown-ups who own guns. Some of them even need those guns, as tools, which is what guns are for.

    The great American mistake has been getting Gun-the-Tool confused with Gun-the-Magical-Shield-Against-BadThought. It’s been hella profitable for the NRA, but then, selling cocaine is hella profitable, and drug lords don’t get to buy politicians, at least on the open market.

    Gun Safety. It’s what grown-ups do. Time for Americans to start acting like grown-ups, not spoilt teenagers.

  68. 68
    Schlemizel says:

    @Alison:

    Can we get Obama to call in a drone strike? He wants to end religious extremism here would be a great place to start. Their church is on google maps.

    It would be illegal and wrong for a private citizen to do but the President could order it and it would all be legal

  69. 69
    beltane says:

    @SteveinSC: The gun fetishists positively reek of impotence and emasculation. Even the way they argue their point using shrill, subjective, emotionally based language is a trait that misogynists attribute to the female mind.

    Is all the estrogen in our food and water causing some kind of hormone imbalance in a subset of American men?

  70. 70
    cmorenc says:

    @Eric:

    We should make it mandatory that if you own a gun it is kept locked where only you can access it. If someone uses your gun to commit a crime and it is determined that you didn’t have it adequately secured then you are criminally libel.

    Recognize that this sensible-seeming idea contains a problematic conundrum if we are also to continue to recognize the right of people to keep ordinary firearms within the home for self-defense against potential intruders. Just as a purely practical question, aside from the politics involved, what kind of locked, exclusively self-accessible scheme could be employed which wouldn’t risk problematically delaying and impairing the owner from timely accessing it for self-defense against an intruder?

    I’m progressive and generally in favor of tight general regulations of firearms, but OTOH I still vividly recall the night when I was fourteen at home watching television one Saturday night just past midnight, when I thought I heard the sounds of my dad coming into the kitchen (he was an ob-gyn physician and frequently made trips to the hosptial and back at night while on call). I got up from my chair, turned the corner to the L-shaped hallway configured such that I had a narrow, but sufficient angle to look all the way back into a half-bath off the kitchen maybe thirty feet from where I stood, and I saw the profile of a man that at first seemed to closely resemble my dad in the available light…until I said “dad”, and the as the figure turned to me, I suddenly realized he wasn’t my dad and he had a gun in his hand which in a moment would be pointed directly at me! Fortunately, I was standing just two steps from the bottom of the stairs, and I flew past where he had an angle at me and up the stairs, yelling the whole time, crashing open the door into my parents’ room to get the loaded shotgun put my dad kept under his bed. My true dad and mom were in bed, and I yelled “GET THE GUN, BURGLER!” my dad grabbed the shotgun; the whole sequence of events from crashing into the bedroom to when he had the gun out, safety off ready to blast the burgler if he came upstairs to the door, was no more than about three seconds. My mom called the police. Fortunately, the intruder apparently immediately realized I’d made an escape heard me yelling about the gun, and he ran through the hallway and out the front door, as revealed by his trail of dirty footprints and fingerprints on the front door.

    QUESTION: What sort of “safe, locked” storage requirements would have still allowed us timely access to defend against the burgler, had he instead come up the stairs after me?

    The point isn’t that I’m disagreeing that sensible gun regulation is needed, but rather that the whole thing isn’t nearly as simple and straightforward as it seems, even if we DO somehow get enough political support on our side to implement sensible gun regulations.

  71. 71
    Alison says:

    @Schlemizel: I don’t know if you think you’re being clever or funny, but I find it incredibly unnecessary. Rein it in FFS, have a little tact.

  72. 72
    Yutsano says:

    @whidgy: Uhh…so what? You give me one good reason why you need an SKS and I’ll stand behind your right to carry one. I could give a fuck if the right wing nuts go into paranoid frenzies about Obummer taking their precious penile replacements. No one has a need for an assault weapon. Period.

  73. 73
    cathyx says:

    @beltane: No, it’s the women’s fault for raising their boys to be insecure in their masculinity. The world’s problems can always be blamed on women.

  74. 74
    Rjv says:

    So tragic. It’s time to end NRA, Norquist and GOP nihilism

  75. 75
    MikeInSewickley says:

    @Schlemizel: Unfortunately, I know you’re right.

    They’d just gerrymander the NRA rules to prevent any take over, probably some crap based on how long you were a member.

    So it is probably up to our government leaders, have mercy on our souls.

    I’m finished talking about these ideas for now as I suddenly realized how far it has taken us from John’s original post and the loss of one child who will never have the chance to
    -grow up and make a difference
    -to see any more sunrises and sunsets
    -to see the stars and maybe travel to them and look down on our world
    -to enrich the lives of others…

    I’m so sad and ashamed of how easy it was to take her life.

  76. 76
    cathyx says:

    QUESTION: What sort of “safe, locked” storage requirements would have still allowed us timely access to defend against the burgler, had he instead come up the stairs after me?

    A zipper on a pillowcase?

  77. 77
    whidgy says:

    @Yutsano: I was just replying to a poster who said that nobody is advocating taking anyone’s guns away. Some people certainly are advocating exactly that.

  78. 78
    Schlemizel says:

    @Alison:

    Neither clever no funny. I’m tired of being a nice guy while human garbage like WBC pisses all over decent society.

    Did you know that officials say every kid was shot 3 to 11 times? And I have to see pictures of those kids? Yeah, I feel real tactful

    I tried to lighten up in the last thread and then I had to see this one. Fuckit

  79. 79
    whidgy says:

    QUESTION: What sort of “safe, locked” storage requirements would have still allowed us timely access to defend against the burgler, had he instead come up the stairs after me?

    I don’t know that I am in favor of laws requiring these, but you can put one beside your bed and get it open in less than a second:

    http://www.amazon.com/Gunvault.....s=gun+safe

  80. 80
    Howard Beale IV says:

    @Anne Laurie: In IL, if you have ever been committed (voluntary or otherwise) for mental health treatment, the state bars you from purchasing arms for 5 years.

  81. 81
    👽 Martin says:

    @whidgy:

    You had 30 days to turn them in, you could NOT resell them in the state, and after that it was a felony charge.

    And?

    20 parents sent their kid off to school and got a dead body back in return. Who do you think 99.9% of the public are going to sympathize with here?

    I’m one of the people arguing against banning guns – including assault rifles, and going for much greater regulation of ownership instead, but the ability of gun owners to cast themselves as the real victims every time there is some mass shooting is just breathtaking – and unbearably infuriating.

    Relative to what other people have lost, nobody fucking cares that you’re going to lose your $500.

  82. 82
    cathyx says:

    @Schlemizel: So you were serious about having drones kill people here?

  83. 83
    Alison says:

    @Schlemizel: I wasn’t referring to your general disgust at WBC which I share. It was the drone comment, considering how those often go here. I just didn’t want it to turn into an argument about foreign policy.

    But yeah, fuck the WBC.

  84. 84
    Matt McIrvin says:

    I just read a morose post saying that gun bans are just going to increase crime, because crime will get less lethal which means that the criminals will get shorter jail sentences, leaving them on the streets to commit more crimes.

    Apparently lax gun laws are good because they lead to high murder rates: that’s the only thing keeping our general violent crime rate as low as it is, via high incarceration. It’s a new one on me, though it has a strange kind of logic to it.

  85. 85
    redshirt says:

    Listening to sports radio in Maine this morning was inspiring. The host talked about the shooting, and of course continually went out of his way to say “this isn’t political” and “I don’t have any answers” but then “Something needs to be done”.

    After listening to several sympathetic callers (a shock) I called in, and was somehow allowed to talk for 10 minutes. I brought up many points we raised on BJ last night – 3 9/11’s per year. The ridiculous security lengths we went to after the shoe bomber, etc. The host was incredibly receptive and after my call was done (I emphasized the honor of hunting and sport shooting, and that Maine gun owners are by and large responsible), I finished with a pretty emphatic “Enough is enough”.

    The next few callers who called in all echoed my points. I was incredibly surprised, because the same station had many negative reactions to Bob Costa’s speech a few weeks back.

    This might be the incident that gets us moving forward. I hope. I pray.

  86. 86
    Schlemizel says:

    @Alison:

    I’d be OK with a team 6 raid then – double tap the whole damn bunch of them

  87. 87
    👽 Martin says:

    @cmorenc:

    QUESTION: What sort of “safe, locked” storage requirements would have still allowed us timely access to defend against the burgler, had he instead come up the stairs after me?

    Biometric locks are routine now on all manner of devices. There’s no reason they can’t be integrated into the firearm itself and programmed to unlock for any individual in the household.

    Technology has solved this problem, but policy hasn’t kept up.

  88. 88
    Maude says:

    If the assault weapons ban is put back, it would be a good start. The thing is, the day the bill passed, Obama would have to sign is and it would have to be in effect the same day.
    My concern is that if a ban on any military style weapon is banned, there would be time for nuts to stock up.
    I would like to see the assault weapons ban include not being able to own one. Yes, it is taking weapons away from people.
    No one in this country should own an assault weapon.
    They can turn them into the local police. The weapons can be melted down.
    If these “gun” owners don’t like it, too bad.
    This is the time to do this.
    The Republicans need to get out front and state clearly that these weapons should no longer be legal.
    It was a Republican Congress and a Republican president that allowed the assault weapons ban to expire. The Republicans need to rectify that now.
    Any Democrat that balks at this can be inundated with mail.
    There are more of us than them.

  89. 89
    General Stuck says:

    @amy c:

    This time they struck at the primal core of human existence, and perpetuation. The youngest of the future gathered together completely defenseless. You are correct at the much different level and degree of fear this attack generates, and fear without rationality is means of self destruction more powerful that any crazy person with a gun. Make the schools safe, first, in the smartest and lowest profile way as possible. Then deal with all this other gun shit. The money needs to be appropriated for the data bases that were created under past laws to keep guns out of as many people as possible that should not have them. Good place to start.

  90. 90
    Shadow's Mom says:

    @whidgy: That was me, and you have a point; there is a move to ban certain types of weapons. Those who own those weapons would, in fact, have to give up those weapons.

    I could live with required registration of all firearms with annual renewals. I do this for my vehicles; why shouldn’t gun owners do it for their firearms.

    A gun is a deadly weapon and I think it reasonable that the state know who owns which types of weapons. If you are then caught with an unregistered weapon, there would be significant criminal liability.

  91. 91
    whidgy says:

    @👽 Martin: I was responding to a poster who said that nobody was advocating taking away anyone’s guns.

    @Schlemizel: So you were serious about having drones kill people here?

    We just have drones kill people (including hundreds of children) in far away countries. But they don’t count because they’re not cute white kids.
    http://www.nytimes.com/roomfor.....ne-strikes

  92. 92
    ChrisNYC says:

    I feel really strangely optimistic about the chances of better regulation. I just think it is an unacceptable (as in untenable, will not hold) resolution to say “Nothing can be done, there will be more bodies” which is the NRA captured electeds only response. For real, nothing can be done to prevent twenty 6 year olds from being massacred in their classroom? I think voters respond to that with, “You can leave your Congressman pass at the door on your way out.”

  93. 93
    JPL says:

    Who knows why the villain went to an elementary school but until the police release more info, I’m not going to blame the mom. The mom took the son target shooting, do we know if the father did? Do we know how often the father interacted with the son? Why didn’t the son live with the Dad in Stamford?

  94. 94
    daveX99 says:

    @Johncole: could you maybe start a thread that lists the most probable organizations to which one could donate or join?

    by ‘probable’, i mean those with enough juice to actually accomplish something, or whose focus is really a good counterpoint to the pollution spewed by the nra.

    I’m sick of this.

  95. 95
    Zelma says:

    I sure would be happy to give financial support to opponents of our current gun insanity, but I’m not sure the Brady people are the place to go. Better we should find a way to give money to those who will oppose politicians who support uncontrolled guns. I’ve heard that Bloomberg established a PAC that was influential in defeating a Dem in CA who had supported the NRA position. IMOP, that’s the way to go. Hit ’em where it hurts.

  96. 96
    Raven says:

    @whidgy: Fuck you asshole.

  97. 97
    PurpleGirl says:

    I also posted this in the Huckabee thread. An interesting blog posting I found through Slacktivist.

    http://www.calebwilde.com/2012…..pens-next/

    These are the thoughts of a funeral director who knows how small towns react to such tragedies. Apparently, from the posting, there are enough people and non-profit groups who work to help families pay for funerals, that the projected costs have already been covered.

  98. 98
    sb says:

    @Raven: Second that.

  99. 99
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Maude:

    There are more of us than them.

    They care more. And care longer.

  100. 100
    Keith G says:

    I could live with required registration of all firearms with annual renewals. I do this for my vehicles; why shouldn’t gun owners do it for their firearms.

    I wish that would be sufficient, but I fear the such a policy’s main impact will be allow for a much quicker determination of ownership after the crime. That is no small thing, but it is not a lifesaver as we have seen how easy it is for quasi tactical weaponry to be taken without permission and used in crime.

    Those weapons need to be removed.

  101. 101
    ChrisNYC says:

    @Zelma: I think the Bloomberg thing is effective as well. They had a good record in 2012. I also think it’s his big idea legacy and he relishes the idea of basically single handedly taking on the NRA. But their site is just a front page, no donation button, from what I can see. Maybe it’s all his own money (?).

  102. 102
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @redshirt: Maine, huh? Good luck. Those callers were violating the state constitution.

  103. 103
    Maude says:

    @Davis X. Machina:
    I disagree. All children need to be safe in school and other public places. All children.
    People in this country do care. Obama was re elected.
    The tide is turning. To give up is to allow murderers to have access to assault weapons.

  104. 104
    Heliopause says:

    We need to make it so have an NRA sticker on your car is as toxic as claiming membership in the KKK.

    Don’t disagree, but you need to understand something; being a gun enthusiast (to use the most charitable terminology) is about as toxic with our political class as being an Israel enthusiast. That is, the fight would be a long, long, long one. If you don’t have the stomach for a fight that’s going to take decades to yield meaningful results don’t even bring it up.

  105. 105
    honus says:

    @Eric: All those things make a lot of sense. Unfortunately, we’ve been passing laws to the contrary for the past 20 years. Gun dealers and manufacturers have been pretty well insulated from liability for a while now. With “Stand Your Ground” the shooters are receiving immunity from prosecution.

  106. 106
    the Conster says:

    @redshirt:

    My husband who works in Maine, owns shotguns for skeet shooting and knows a ton of people who subsist on deer and moose, also feels that there’s a shift in attitude with this “incident”. Non-nutjob gun owners want this whole NRA-fueled fuckedupedness about no regulations anywhere, ever, fixed. There’s a window of opportunity here.

  107. 107
    collaborotter says:

    @ChrisNYC:

    I hope you’re right. Coming from the gun lobby, statements like “There’s nothing we/you can do” or “There will be more bodies” are nothing but threats masquerading as “resigned, realist” language.

  108. 108
    Laertes says:

    So this sucks and yesterday sucked and I was in a shitty mood all day and feeling sad when I thought about it, which was often, but not, like, all day or anything. And it was far away and I didn’t know anyone there and it happens a lot anyway so about all I felt was sad and angry.

    I didn’t cry until I saw that photo.

    Fuck.

  109. 109
    whidgy says:

    @Shadow’s Mom: I agree that a registration scheme might make sense in terms of being able to solve crimes, but I don’t see how it would have prevented this one.

    @Raven: One of the problems in this country is that there is waaaaay too much anger and incivility.
    .

  110. 110
    Del says:

    @Davis X. Machina: we’ve been through the whole state vs federal rights issue before. The right to never be questioned regarding gun ownership in Maine is in their constitution? Though shit, that doesn’t mean anything to a federal gun law.

  111. 111
    Raven says:

    @whidgy: You’re a moron, take your sanctimonious bullshit somewhere else.

  112. 112
    Laertes says:

    And I just sent money to the Brady campaign for the first time. Feels good.

  113. 113
    collaborotter says:

    @whidgy:

    Yes. People who shoot up shopping malls and kindergartens are just soooo gosh-darned incivil! Guns don’t kill people, poor manners do.

    smh

  114. 114
    virginia says:

    The loss of these children under these circumstances is the very definition of living hell for their families. Like some have posted above, I can’t think about it for too long without imploding. Yesterday’s version of “today is not the day …” absolutely enraged me and I found some small comfort in coming to see that I wasn’t alone in that reaction. I’ve some hope that folks will mobilize in a real way. I know I started yesterday afternoon.

    This simply must be the turning point for gun safety legislation in this country. If the USA can’t respond to this horror in a way that makes sense, we are permanently lost.

    As for the mother, I simply don’t understand why such an arsenal was being kept in the house — under the same roof as a young man who was clearly experiencing tremendous difficulties. This would appear, obviously, to be a recipe for disaster. I don’t see this as blaming the Mom — I’m one myself and my son is an Aspie — I realize fully how easy it is to throw stones without basis. But, that being said, much much more needs to be done to ensure that gun owners are fully educated and capable (beyond the surface) of dealing with their stash given what’s happening in their households. Cole’s statements on the matter are harsh for sure — but deservedly so. A number of things appear to have gone horribly horribly wrong and the result is a national tragedy and a national disgrace both.

    The picture of this beautiful little girl is heartbreaking.

  115. 115
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Del: Maine’s a blue state — but that article of the state constitution was amended to read “and this right shall never be questioned” by popular referendum, in 1987. And it wasn’t even close. (I did canvassing for the losing side.) While the state was at least as blue as it was now.

    I’m not optimistic. Away from salt water, north and west of the turnpike, this is Mississippi.

  116. 116
    whidgy says:

    .@Raven: One of the problems in this country is that there is waaaaay too much anger and incivility.

    Yes. People who shoot up shopping malls and kindergartens are just soooo gosh-darned incivil! Guns don’t kill people, poor manners do.

    I would put that more in the “anger” category, than in the “incivility” category.

  117. 117
    Hawes says:

    A lovely young woman in my school – she’s my wife’s field hockey goalie – her mother worked at Sandy Hook and opened the door for the principal and counselor to rush into the hall.

    Amy is just a delight; the idea that her mother might have died yesterday…

  118. 118
    AHH onna Droid says:

    Idle hands do the devils work. @Violet:

  119. 119
    bemused senior says:

    Re forcing owners to give up certain types of weapons:

    Restrictions could include compensation of owners forced to turn in these types of guns.

    Re WBC: I’m pretty sure that their despicable behavior has proven to be a scam, in which they do this to provoke incidents they can sue someone over. Most of this family “church” are lawyers. Need to Google to get the goods on that, but I think the Supremes case about their behavior stemmed from an example of this.

  120. 120
    redshirt says:

    @the Conster: That’s my feeling too. Obviously completely anecdotal, but I’m struck by the marked difference in reaction amongst the callers to the football player murder/suicide a few weeks back, and Newtown.

    Then, people were all “Argle Bargle Costas can stuff it!”

    Now, one guy who sounded very depressed said (I paraphrase): “I’m a gun owner, I’ve got a lot of guns. Take them. Take them all if it will stop events like this.”

    There were a couple of other callers who were anti-NRA (these were self professed hunters). It was a shocking turnabout, though sadly I doubt it will last.

  121. 121
    Genine says:

    My condolences…

  122. 122
  123. 123
    David Koch says:

    tragically, this isn’t the end.

    3 to 4 months will go by and another slaughter will occur.

    sadly, I think it will take a super rich person becoming one of the casualties before some serious money gets pumped into lobbying. Like gay marriage in new york, it wasn’t until some billionaires with gay children got involved before enough money was spread around to buy up enough GOP votes.

  124. 124
    honus says:

    @cmorenc: First, about 99% of the intruders are going to react the way yours did. (Running away instead of walking up a stairway into the face of probable fire) Hearing you yell “Get the gun!” likely helped him change his mind if he had thought of pursuing you.

    Second, It’s a good idea to have to take a few seconds to wake up, come to your senses, and load a firearm in the middle of the night. Keeping a loaded firearm in close proximity to the bed so you can grab and go is a recipe for killing an acquaintance or a family member. It takes about 5-10 seconds to load a shotgun. That short interlude is more likely to save the life of a family member than allow an intruder to kill you. And if you’re not awake enough to load quickly, you’re not awake enough to shoot.

    Nothing scares me more than looking at some gun nut blog and reading about how these nitwits have been told to go around “cocked and locked” so they can draw and fire as quickly as possible. These people are walking homicide time bombs.

  125. 125
    PurpleGirl says:

    @sharl: The problem apparently is the wackaloon NRA leadership, who are undoubtedly well compensated by firearm manufacturers in some manner for being the willing public faces who are out front whenever shit like this happens.

    It’s real simple: The gun manufacturers give the NRA nice, large donations and the leadership makes very nice, large salaries and perks.

  126. 126
    the Conster says:

    @redshirt:

    I hate to say it, but it was a black athlete that was probably all hepped up on ‘roids, v. little white kids that look like their own. That just makes a difference in the minds of people, and maybe that’s what we need to work with while we can. I think there’s a pervasive sense that we are all Newtown now.

  127. 127
    PurpleGirl says:

    @Anne Laurie: I owned a .22 Marlin rifle. I used it for target shooting with friends in Westchester. When they moved and I stopped shooting in Westchester I wasn’t sure about keeping it. The firing range in Manhattan I had joined was inconvenient to get to and I had stopped going there. I wasn’t sure I could shoot to kill an intruder to my apartment and in that case, it was likely the rifle could be turned on me. I decided to have the NYPD hold it in their safe-keeping program. I never got the rifle back and therefore it was destroyed at some later time.

  128. 128
    Bobby Thomson says:

    Sorry to hear about whidgy’s pathetically small and impotent p3nis.

    Yeah, that was rude. You’re an asshole. Fuck off.

  129. 129
    honus says:

    @redshirt: I think you and Conster may be right. Huckabee is finished as a politician (if he wasn’t before) because he simply can’t defend his knee-jerk reaction blaming the victims, when no respectable person could do otherwise than flatly condemn this in all respects-including the mother’s (completely legal) gun ownership.
    This may be the event that separates the 27% Ted Nugent tin cans from the gun owners who are hunters or casual target shooters, but have been going along with the NRA line because it’s been an integral part of white male suburban politics. This could be the end of that. It’s hard to defend the NRA at the dinner table after this one. Nobody wants to hear it. At least for the past couple days, an NRA bumper sticker isn’t an attractive thing, even if the members don’t know it yet. If it’s still that way six months from now, we may get somewhere.

  130. 130
    windpond says:

    @Alison: Thank you. That’s what I needed, a place to start; something relevant which is already in place. I just donated and will work from there.

  131. 131
    Angela says:

    Is there anything sweeter then the innocence and happiness of little kids? This picture is heart breaking. The parent of three young adult sons, I can’t begin to imagine the pain these parents are feeling. And will continue to feel.

    Thank you for posting this, I plan to weep for a while, but then my grief will fuel my resolve. This has to stop. I, too, am so tired of the worshipping of guns in this culture.

  132. 132
    sneezy says:

    @Anne Laurie:

    Guns are for grown-ups. If you’re not mature enough to handle/store/control a gun safely, you don’t deserve to have one. And it’s not enough to believe you’re mature enough, any more than we let twelve-year-olds buy beer or fourteen-year-olds drive cars.

    __
    Gun Safety. It’s what grown-ups do. Time for Americans to start acting like grown-ups, not spoilt teenagers.

    I think you’ve got the rhetoric right and that this is the best way to frame the topic. Nicely done.

  133. 133
    redshirt says:

    @the Conster: Yeah, I hate to think about the “what if’s” here, but what if this was a predominately black school with a black shooter? How different would our collective reaction be? And you don’t have to answer that, because I think we all know – look at any tragedy that doesn’t happen to America and you think 90% of Americans give any fuck? We’re too damn tribal.

  134. 134
    redshirt says:

    @honus: I hope you’re right. We need to take back the middle from the right wing radicals, who have us in thrall/held hostage in a variety of areas.

  135. 135
    sharl says:

    @PurpleGirl: Probably so.

    A grim but plausible thought occurs to me: could NRA leadership’s current silence be the result of ongoing negotiations between them and the firearm manufacturers, over how much money the latter need to cough up before NRA becomes their shit-catcher for this latest atrocity? Even if they already have an established rate sheet, there may not be an entry there for “classroom of elementary school kids wiped out”.

    NRA will be charging top dollar to go out front for this one.

  136. 136
    g says:

    @Ken J.: Now, you want Obama to take their guns, thus validating all their craziness.

    No I don’t. I don’t care if they have guns. But I want the government to know who has guns. I want the government to know who buys ammunition.

    I want gun owners to have to pass a test before they can buy a gun.

    I want the government to require people who have guns to buy insurance. I want insurance companies to charge higher premiums for higher risk – just like it costs more to insure a Mustang V8 convertible than it does to insure a Honda Civic, I want it to cost a lot more to own an assault rifle than it does to own a hunting rifle.

    I want there to be financial incentives for gun owners to lock their guns in gun safes.

    I want it to be expensive for people to “collect” guns like fetishes.

    I want the government to be able to trace explosives used in crimes to the buyers and sellers – something the NRA has lobbied against.

    How’s that for a start?

  137. 137
    redshirt says:

    @sharl: They’re no doubt practicing the fine art of “weathering the storm”. Sit back, say nothing, wait a couple of weeks for some new flashy object to appear, then go back to business as normal.

  138. 138
    Hob says:

    @Ken J.:

    I thought we promised the loonies that Obama wasn’t going to take their guns. We poked fun when the loonies made runs on the gun stores. Now, you want Obama to take their guns, thus validating all their craziness.
    ….
    Politically, I’m tired of dying on the gun control hill. (A metaphor I have chosen very deliberately.) Yes, we are a very sick society. Gonna have to fix that before we can start disarming the crazies.

    So I have a few problems with that.

    1. “We” didn’t “promise the loonies” anything. What I guess you’re referring to is that when crazy people have gone on about how the Democrats are about to take away all their guns in order to institute a police state at the behest of the UN, etc., other people have pointed out that that is crazy. When people cling to delusional systems that are chock full of blatantly untrue things, you can’t try to accommodate them by avoiding anything that might make one of those things seem slightly more true. Should we also make sure we never paint a helicopter black, even if there’s a good reason to do so?

    2. Speaking at least for myself, the statement “Don’t worry, Obama doesn’t want to take away all your guns” does not mean that I think taking away guns would be a terrible thing. It means I don’t think Obama wants to do that, since, like nearly every national politician during my adult life, he’s never made any real gestures toward any form of gun control. It’s something many/most of us have basically given up on and don’t expect to happen. How can you be “sick of dying on the gun control hill,” when it’s been decades since anyone fought on that hill?

    If right now there might, maybe, slightly, be some chance of making it happen, it won’t be because Obama had a change of heart; it’ll be because the national political consensus has shifted so that more people agree with us now. And in that case, we’re not “validating” the loonies– we’re saying that their argument is not with Obama, it’s with the American people.

    3. “We can’t do anything about ______ until we fix our sick society” is a convenient argument against absolutely anything, and it’s demonstrably false. Right here on this blog is an example of a country that was and continues to be fairly fucked up in many ways, yet, without totally overhauling their social foundations so as to eliminate violence or mental illness, managed to pass a gun-control measure which seems to have helped lessen the likelihood of large groups of schoolchildren being shot.

  139. 139
    karen says:

    The NRA owns the country. When they stop funding politicians then and only then will things change. I wish it was different. I wish we lived in a country where we had real funding for mental health so less psychotic people had access to guns. But this is the USA where there isn’t such thing as a gun that gun nuts don’t love and demand we have unlimited amounts of that can shoot unlimited rounds of ammo and I’m sorry, I’m just too cynical to believe that this time will be any different than all the other gun massacres.

  140. 140
    Merry says:

    I can’t stop crying while looking at this innocent little face of Caroline and her baby-toothed smile. To her family, I am soooooo sorry. But that won’t take away your broken heart. I wish I could. I’m sorry. The tears, the tears, they will not stop. I can not imagine your pain.

  141. 141
    Paul in NC says:

    Bumpersticker: Hey hey NRA how many kids did you kill today?

  142. 142
    Lojasmo says:

    @cmorenc:

    Biometric gun safes exist with the ability to accept more than one fingerprint. For instance, my wife or I could open the safe in a matter of three seconds. The safe also stores a record of who opened it, and when.

    http://www.amazon.com/BARSKA-Q.....B005FDIUPE

  143. 143
    Lojasmo says:

    @whidgy:

    Are you serious with this shit? The number of drone deaths in the list five years is one sixth the number of gun deaths THIS YEAR in the US.

    Fuck you.

  144. 144
    Tim says:

    The right of Mrs. Lanza to … sire a child with mental health issues….

    1. There has been no evidence that Adam suffered from a mental illness.

    2. Siring a child with mental illness is a right? You think that this is a choice that parents make? Such a suggestion is stupid and offensive. You need to apologize.

  145. 145
    ruemara says:

    @whidgy: Please go fuck yourself.

  146. 146

    […] it touches that I’ve been turning over in my head all day.  John caught a lot of that with this post, which I read this morning, but that just made me think on it the more.  At some point during the […]

  147. 147
    Fran says:

    Everything you said is so true. Thank you for your vision and courage and honesty. This will happen again and again until weapons of mass destruction are removed from the general population.

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