Early Morning Open Thread: A Start

spelling out the problem guns
(Drew Sheneman via GoComics.com — click link for full-sized image)

Per the Washington Post:

President Obama on Monday began the first serious push of his administration to attempt to reduce gun violence, directing Cabinet members to formulate a set of proposals that could include reinstating a ban on assault rifles.

The effort will be led by Vice President Biden, according to two people outside the government who have spoken to senior administration officials since Friday, when a gunman killed his mother and rampaged through Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., killing 20 children, six adults and himself.

The tentative steps ended a paralyzing debate within the administration over how hard to pursue gun-control legislation, which has been a politically perilous issue for many Democrats. There were signs Monday, however, that such fear was abating on the Democratic side of the aisle….

But any significant gun legislation would require support from leading Republicans, none of whom joined Democrats on Monday in outlining specific changes they might consider.

The rising anxiety in Washington over how to respond to the Sandy Hook massacre came as a new Washington Post-ABC News poll found a shift in the way most Americans view such tragedies and the reasons behind them. More than half of the respondents to the poll, conducted over the weekend, said the shooting in Connecticut reflected societal problems rather than the isolated action of a troubled individual. Fewer than a quarter said the same thing after the July shooting in a Aurora, Colo., movie theater, where a gunman killed 12 people and injured dozens.

Obama, who has appeared shaken by the Sandy Hook shootings, met Monday with Biden, who advocated for stricter gun-control measures during his years in the Senate. The president also spoke Monday with Education Secretary Arne Duncan, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius “to begin looking at ways the country can respond to the tragedy in Newtown,” according to a White House official who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Others involved in the new effort include White House Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler; Biden’s chief counsel, Cynthia C. Hogan; and senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, who traveled with Obama to Connecticut on Sunday to address a memorial service for the Sandy Hook victims…

Aaron Blake at the WaPo has a chart of every Senator’s NRA ranking.

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81 replies
  1. 1
    Linda Featheringill says:

    Good morning, everyone.

    I’ve begun working on the Republicans in the House. Someone else will have to pressure the Senate.

    I’m emphasizing the fact that assault rifles couldn’t overpower the U.S. military in case of an armed uprising anyway, so folks wouldn’t lose an arms advantage if the big cartridge guns were done away with. It’s something even hunters and rebels can turn loose of.

    How effective that will be, I dunno.

    Edited because I can’t spell on Tuesdays. :-)

  2. 2
    Raven says:

    Wednesday, July 25, 2012

    “I am not against owning guns. I understand hunting and I know that some people feel evil is all around them and they want some protection, but to be able to go online and buy 6,000 rounds of ammunition, what in God’s name is a civilian doing with 6,000 rounds of ammunition? I am all for personal protection but you do not need an arsenal. Our country needs a national gun law. We should limit the number and type of weapons an individual is allowed to own and they ought to be catalogued in a national database that every arms dealer has to check before making a sale. If somebody carries an assault rifle, like the kind I carried while fighting in Europe during World War II, they are not going duck hunting; they are going manhunting. Current reports indicate that James Holmes, the suspect who allegedly shot up the theater in Colorado, did not have a criminal record nor did he have a history of erratic behavior but he was able to arm himself with a shotgun, two handguns, an assault rifle and 6,000 rounds of ammunition in a little less than three months and nobody thought a thing about it until it was too late. What was the rationale for his purchases? We should not permit that sort of thing in this country,” said Senator Inouye.

  3. 3
    jayboat says:

    A bit OT, but if you haven’t read TBogg’s latest evisceration of the ol perfesser, it is a thing of beauty.

    Feel like I need a cigarette and I don’t smoke.

  4. 4
    Patricia Kayden says:

    President Obama is moving in the right direction. Hopefully, the Cabinet members can come up with some meaningful gun control proposals.

    Just read about Republicans’ plan to split the electoral votes in Blue states where they run things. Very scary.


  5. 5
    TS says:

    It seems utterly disgusting that such a thing as an “NRA rating” exists.

  6. 6
    mai naem says:

    I know people are tired of this shooting stuff but…. I’m watching Morning Ho and they’re questioning the mother’s judgement etc. and all that is good but where was the dad? The dad just seems like he dumped the mom and the kid, gave the mom some money and took off.

  7. 7
    Raven says:

    Mornin Joe has just removed himself from the argument by saying “10mm Glock”. You think John is in trouble for calling a magazine a clip? Just wait.

  8. 8
    Mr B says:

    “The controlled study documented in these videos show that concealed carry permit holders are fooling themselves if they think they will be able to react effectively to armed aggressors.” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8QjZY3WiO9s

  9. 9
    Raven says:

    @mai naem: Their divorce agreement was that she would take care of him.

  10. 10
    Rational Subjectivist says:

    Headed back to the USA today. I’ll pass through TSA (and its Mexican equivalent) for the 5th time in 7 days.
    We’re all about protecting America by making people with airline tickets jump through hoops and everyone accepts that.
    But we can’t agree that military style guns have no place in our homes. This is just absurd, and I have hope that we can drive that point home and make a change to our ridiculously permissive gun laws.

  11. 11
    amk says:

    Watching the rerun of a gun control discussion on Al Jazeera. No drama. No yelling. No constant interruptions from the moderator (who had clearly done his homework) or from the panelists. US msm has a lot to learn from AJ.

  12. 12
  13. 13
    Gozer says:

    That NRA chart is such bullshit (by which I mean the NRA rankings are bullshit not the chart). I know for a fact that Bernie Sanders is has one of the more “pro-gun” voting records in congress and has for most of his career and yet he has regularly been awarded ratings of D or F from the NRA. Wonder why that would be??

  14. 14
    MikeJ says:


    Mornin Joe has just removed himself from the argument by saying “10mm Glock”. You think John is in trouble for calling a magazine a clip?


  15. 15
    The Red Pen says:

    @Raven: 10mm Glock is a common police sidearm.

    I prefer to call it the 1cm Glock just to be annoying.

  16. 16
    gene108 says:

    John Kerry to be tapped for Sec. of State.

    I’d be upset about the borking of Susan Rice, but I realize Democrats started borking candidates by unleashing their irrational hatred on Robert Bork. /sad_acknowledgement_of_grudge_holding_right-wingers

  17. 17
    MikeJ says:

    @Rational Subjectivist:

    But we can’t agree that military style guns have no place in our homes

    One argument the gun nuts always make, and it has a bit of merit, is that “assault rifles” are functionally the same as many weapons which were not banned when assault rifles were. The main difference was that the banned weapons tended to be black and look military. You could get a rifle with the same size clip and that would shoot just as fast as long as it had a walnut stock and the people in the ads wore plaid instead of camo.

    Since that actually is true, why won;t they just give on that one point? They admit they’re not losing anything. Is it all slippery slope?

  18. 18
    The Red Pen says:

    Has anyone done a “gun map” showing NRA support? I’m betting it matches a “Republican map.”

    This brings me to my main thought this morning.

    People like to point out that Florida looks like a limp dick. Texas, of course, is kinda like a huge asshole. That makes the strip of deep-red states (LA, MS, AL) between them “America’s taint.”

    Florida is already a battleground, and Texas is predicted to go blue eventually meaning that at some point, Republicans may transition from being the rump party to being the taint party.

  19. 19
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Here’s another, very interesting approach to the issue, via Financial Times. The California teachers’ pension fund (which is huge) is “reviewing its investment” with Cerberus Capital, a major private-equity firm. Reviewing its investment is a code word; within a day, Cerberus is selling its entire stake in Freedom Group, which is the owner of the company which makes the Bushmaster used by Adam Lanza.

    “Divestiture” could become popular, as it was years ago with South Africa. Make owning or investing in gun makers publicly toxic.

  20. 20
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @mai naem: According to NBC this morning, the kid cut off contact with the dad, not the other way around. Dad was paying over a quarter-mil a year in alimony.

  21. 21
    Raven says:

    @MikeJ: There goes my credibility. I’m from the 45 generation!

  22. 22
    Mark S. says:


    Most of the times where they interview past classmates and teachers, everyone remembers the shooter because he was so fucking crazy. It’s odd that with Lanza most of them don’t even remember him. He seemed just extremely quiet and not particularly dangerous.

  23. 23
    magurakurin says:


    Wow. Did you read the little explanation there. What crap. They try to describe it as a hunting gun

    The GLOCK 20SF, in 10mm Auto, provides nothing short of massive firepower. The use of GLOCK hi-tech polymer considerably reduces felt recoil. With muzzle energy of 550 ft/lbs and a magazine capacity of 15 rounds, this 10mm is your reliable companion on every hunt. The G29 also provides a safe and accurate finishing shot, even when hunting big game. The SF model reduces the circumference of the receiver at the rear, or “backstrap,” offering increased comfort and control—especially to shooters with smaller hands

    They know that these sort of weapons are only for killing people, but they continue to hide behind the “hunting exception.” It’s fucking disgusting. I say if you want to hunt you get to use a rifle that holds one bullet. I really fail to see why a single hunting rifle, a single revolver, and a single shotgun is in any way less than enough for hunting and or protection.

    It really is just all about the benjamins, isn’t it?

  24. 24
    Raven says:

    @Mark S.: I agree. Soonergrunt, Mornin Joe both have kids with apergers and it seems the conventional wisdom is that this is not the root cause.

  25. 25
    magurakurin says:


    Nah, you got all the cred you need around here. You were in the shit. You know what you’re fucking talking about where it matters.

  26. 26
    raven says:

    @magurakurin: Nah, I was in the rear with the gear!

  27. 27
    Todd says:

    @mai naem:

    Were I to give an anecdotally formed guess, I’d say that the boy was the one who blew them up. Dad saw the writing on the wall and wanted him shelved, Mom was his most impassioned advocate with everybody.

    In that situation, the only thing Dad can do is punch out, for his own peace of mind.

  28. 28
    Baud says:

    OT: Anyone else hear about the Richard Engel capture and release. Incredible. Looking forward to hearing the whole story.

  29. 29
    some guy says:

    President Obama promised Social Security benefits would not be cut, not even by “one dime.” Please ask him and his fellow Democrats to keep that promise.

  30. 30
    Keith G says:


    Their divorce agreement was that she would take care of him

    Apparently, he had the better lawyer.

  31. 31
    some guy says:


    Any word on how much Al Qaeda charged NBC for Engel’s release?

  32. 32
    Baud says:

    @some guy:

    I googled and could not find that quote. Please provide a link. Thanks.

  33. 33
    Schlemizel says:

    @The Red Pen:

    I mentioned this the other day – the guy that drives my car pool is a reliable Dem vote until you get to the issue of gun control. I don’t think he is alone in this psychosis unfortunately. Thats not a reason to not do the right thing but it needs to be kept in mind.

    What we need to do is to carry the debate on in ways that make those sorts of voters feel safe (they want the guns because they feel threatened it is a psychosis) and to continue to make the case that there is a difference between gun control and confiscation; a difference between appreciation of gun ownership and gun fetishism.

  34. 34
    Baud says:

    @some guy:

    I don’t know any of the details yet.

  35. 35
    Todd says:


    I’ve long been of the opinion that the notion of making a mediocre rifle look like a badass piece of military hardware makes it more likely that they will be misused by Walter Mitty assholes.

    If they were kept as plain vanilla pieces, they’d be more likely to revert to “useful tool” status in the eyes of their beholders.

    Perhaps if we mandated that firearms with high cap mags be manufactured in pink or yellow, and be covered with flower, bunny and rainbow stickers (with penalties in place for painting them over), ‘Murka’s tough men would see them differently.

  36. 36
    Shawn in ShowMe says:


    this 10mm is your reliable companion on every hunt. The G29 also provides a safe and accurate finishing shot, even when hunting big game

    OK, the Glock is really good at bringing down a rhino or an elephant. Even more reason for these real ‘Muricans to take their outlaw act to Somalia.

  37. 37
    Schlemizel says:

    It amazes me that we have so many people here at BJ that know the intimate details of the divorce! Keep up the good work. Nothing like wild-ass assumptions to make the real world conform to our preconceived notions

  38. 38
    some guy says:

    He believes that no current beneficiaries should see their basic benefits reduced and he will not accept an approach that slashes benefits for future generations.


  39. 39
    gnomedad says:

    The effort will be led by Vice President Biden, according to two people outside the government who have spoken to senior administration officials since Friday, when a gunman killed his mother and rampaged through Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., killing 20 children, six adults and himself.

    I had to read that sentence several times to decode it.

  40. 40
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Schlemizel: Both the New York Times and NBC news, at least, have obtained copies of the divorce filing. The amount of alimony, the terms of child custody among other things have all been in print. The Today show discussed it for several minutes this morning. So maybe not such wild-ass assumptions.

  41. 41
    debbie says:

    I just sent this message to my Republican representative, Pat Tiberi. I don’t know his NRA rating (it’s probably pretty high since he’s a loyal member of the Republican Caucus), but he was waving his triplet daughters like flags in his campaign ads.

    I have a very clear memory of your 2012 campaign ads in which you stated you worked for policies which protected and served your children, as well as all children. How about proving that you were telling the truth in those ads, and speak out today, publicly and clearly, that changes must be made in regards to gun ownership and safety? Otherwise, your reputation and your integrity will never amount to much more than one more sad instance of pandering and parading your daughters before the cameras to further your career. Stand up for what the citizens of this state really need: A Representative who represents the people.

    If anyone is in Steve Stivers’ district, he also exploited his infant child.

  42. 42
    Baud says:

    @some guy:


  43. 43
    Schlemizel says:

    @Shawn in ShowMe:

    I imagine they are thinking “big game” in a North American scenario. But nobody that wants a trophy would be too excited about putting a .39 caliber hole into an elk head they plan on mounting. Even a bears head would suffer from that sort of damage. I guess if you were just interested in the meat it would be OK. Not everything I ever shot stopped right where I hit it but I never needed a second shot to stop it. Not sure what these guys problems are, I’m not that great a shot.

  44. 44
    Todd says:


    Hey, as a career divorce practitioner, I can size a family situation up to a comfort level of 80% within 5 minutes of meeting them. By the time I’ve got 25 minutes, I know exactly what I’m facing.

    Doesn’t mean I can necessarily fix it; sometimes, situations are so blown that they can’t even be mitigated. Thankfully, that is the rare exception. Mosttimes, we’re somewhere between “fix” and “mitigate”.

  45. 45
    MikeJ says:


    There goes my credibility.

    Nah. Having to know everything about every gun ever made before having an opinion on gun control is like requiring people to spell derailleur correctly before they can talk about bike lanes.

  46. 46
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Schlemizel: The following (I won’t blockquote) is from the NYTimes yesterday.

    The divorce between the parents of Adam Lanza, the man the authorities say was responsible for Friday’s shooting rampage at a Connecticut elementary school, provided generously for Mr. Lanza’s care and offered no clues about any medical or mental health issues involving the man accused of carrying out the slaughter.

    According to the divorce papers on file at Stamford Superior Court, the former Nancy Jean Champion filed for divorce from Peter John Lanza in late 2008 citing “irreconcilable differences.” The action was classified as a “limited contested” action, meaning that “only financial or property issues” were being contested. The couple married in Kingston, N.H., on June 6, 1981, and had Ryan John Lanza on April 10, 1988, and Adam Peter Lanza on April 22, 1992.

    The court required both parties to attend parenting classes, and both showed proof of completion before the divorce was finalized in September 2009. According to the court-approved settlement, the couple shared joint custody over their minor child at the time, Adam, though his mother was empowered to “make all decisions with respect to the minor child after having consulted with the Father” and was given ultimate authority in the event of any disagreement.

    Adam Lanza was expected to “reside primarily with the Mother,” while the father was promised “free and liberal access to the minor Child at the mutual convenience of the Wife and the Husband.”

  47. 47
    Schlemizel says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    When people start making statements about the cause of the divorce (dad dumped them, dad had the better lawyer, dad ran away from the kids problems) I assume those are assumptions – unless you can link to where in the divorce papers it says that

  48. 48
    Cassidy says:


    / RW Xbox Commandoes

    @magurakurin: I think I might have been talking with you about this the other day, I don’t remember, but this is why trying to get “sportsmen” and hunters on board with banning handguns doesn’t work. Gun owners will genrally fall into two categories: the aforementione hunters and “collectors”. The sportsmen have shotguns, rifles, etc., but mainly hunting style weapons and probably/ possibly an AR, AK, or SKS of some sort. The Collectors envision themselves some sort of mall ninja patriotic, rugged individualist ready to combat tyranny and have the AR’s and *”sniper rifles”, etc. As a subset, some collectors collect older military weapons (Mausers, Lee & Enfields, etc.). Almost all of the time, though, they have handguns.

    *They call it a sniper rifle because they buy a bolt action rifle and put a scope on it and claim to be able to hit things at unreasonable ranges. You should really check out the forum boards on these idiots. Some of them will buy the Remington 700, which is the base for the Army and Marine sniper systems and then think they’re just like snipers because they can hit things from a distacne, completely discounting the amount of training said snipers have.

  49. 49
    Schlemizel says:

    So, waht did you learn in the 20 minutes you spent with the family?

  50. 50
  51. 51
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @Schlemizel: Thank you.

  52. 52
    Baud says:


    Nothing like wild-ass assumptions to make the real world conform to our preconceived notions

    I see your new to the Internet. Welcome!

  53. 53
    some guy says:

    ooops, my bad, the “Not by a single dime.” quote was from whitehouse.gov site on Medicare, it was Biden who used the “not by a single dime” line in regards Social Security benefit cuts.

  54. 54
    MikeJ says:

    @gnomedad: Probably impossible to get insurance for the show otherwise.

  55. 55
    Baud says:



  56. 56
    Schlemizel says:


    Understood – I just expect better here at BJ. Particularly in matters like this we seem to perform well above average.

    I’m sure I can be just as guilty of this at times. Those should also be pointed out. If you want a better neighborhood expect better from your neighbors.

  57. 57
    Schlemizel says:


    Darn, you did it to yourself – I was thinking at first it was someone making another Internet joke 8-{D

    “Reply with pedantic correction”

  58. 58
    gnomedad says:


    Probably impossible to get insurance for the show otherwise.

    You mean the insurance companies don’t buy “more guns == safer”?

  59. 59
    raven says:

    @MikeJ: I was in the position of talking down a guy a few weeks back. He wandered into an outdoor gathering at my buddies cafe down the street. The dude was really big, wild eyed and said he was a black ops sniper jar head just back from Afghanistan, He also said his brother had just been killed there and was trying to decide whether to go home to Iowa for the funeral. On top of this he was making all kinds of inappropriate remarks to almost every woman there. This was a family kind of gathering and I was really worried some husband or boyfriend was going to react and shit would get worse. Anyway I got him to sit down with me and spent a good bit of time talking him down. He finally split much to my relief. The point is I was struggling with how much of his story was bullshit. He kept talking about “the Bear” and I just sort of blew it off. My gun nut buddy later explained that the Bear is a 50 Cal sniper rifle. Now this doesn’t mean he was legit but it doesn’t mean he wasn’t either. I’d never heard of that weapon either.

  60. 60
    raven says:

    @Cassidy: Did you get my email?

  61. 61
    Baud says:


    I think the community here is better than most, which I why I hang out here. Human nature being what it is, however, I think there is only so much “reasonableness” you can expect on a political blog, given that we tend to talk about hot button issues that people feel strongly about.

  62. 62
    Cassidy says:

    @raven: I wouldn’t read into it too much. The regular recon units for USMC were moved to MARSOC (so I’ve been told), so that doesn’t make him Force Recon. It’s been very educational working around these Corpsman.

  63. 63
    Keith G says:

    @MikeJ: I know I should be a better person, but stories about accidental shooting at gun shows always bring a smile.

  64. 64
    WereBear says:

    We are not going to please everybody. We just aren’t. But all the sane gun owners I know are completely on board with a paper trail of possession, background checks, trigger locks and gun safes, and reasonable registration fees.

    But there are rural areas where people should probably have a .22 and/or shotgun; in my area we might have to deal with escaped prisoners, bears, and rabid squirrels.

    This should sort out the loonies and get the sane folks with us.

  65. 65
    Ash Can says:

    @Schlemizel: What do you mean, you never needed a second shot? One of the things I learned from my bro-in-law the hunter is that if you don’t make a clean kill with your first shot, you damn well make that second shot, and if the deer takes off, you track it until you find it either dead or still enough that you can make that second shot. And if you’re not that great a shot, as you say, then maybe you need more practice before you go out hunting again.

  66. 66
    Cassidy says:

    @raven: Yes I did. I’ve sent off two emails as of today; one to Brady and one to the Coalition to End Gun Violence. Gogol’s wife tracked me down and got me that email. So I’m waiting ona response back to see what they have going on. As of right now, I’ve got nothing in this area, so if something is going to be built I’m going ot have to do it from scratch. I’m looking into forming a club on campus, since I am a student, and seeing if I can find a group of like minded veterans around here, as you suggested. Also, the WO in my unit is a City Councilman, so I want to get with him and find out how the system works. once I hear from those two groups, I think my next step is to get smart on local gun laws and and see what I can do to change them.

  67. 67
    raven says:

    @Cassidy: Yea, I know it’s easy to pick up the lingo. The dude was really ripped and obviously in a great deal of emotional turmoil. My first concern was all the people that were there. I didn’t want to call the cops because I thought it might set him off when they showed. I sort of kicked the can down the road but it was the best I could come up with. I actually liked the guy, I’d get him on something funny and he’d be ok for a bit but then he’d swing back to anguish.

  68. 68
  69. 69
    JPL says:

    @raven: A friend mentioned that Isakson said it’s time to do something. I searched the news and can’t find confirmation though.

  70. 70
    bob h says:

    You can bet that Fox won’t be showing any pictures of the Newtown dead.

  71. 71
    raven says:

    @JPL: @JPL: nother Republican senator, Johnny Isakson, went further, expressing support for a broad inquiry into the whole issue.

    “After 9/11, we came together to see what we could do to prevent another attack. The work of the 9/11 commission made flying safer and has helped us prevent another hijacking of a US plane by terrorists. We should evaluate in a thoughtful process gun safety, mental health, school security and all other components that contributed to this horrendous act of violence,” Isakson said in a statement to the Guardian.

  72. 72
    JPL says:

    @raven: Oh goody, the Lieberman approach. asshole..

  73. 73
    raven says:

    @JPL: You knew that before I posted!

  74. 74
    Cassidy says:

    What I jsut sent to my rep and senators



    I wanted to know what you as my representative are going to do about gun control in response to this latest tragedy. I’ve noticed you have an A/B+ rating from the NRA.

    As a concerned citizen, I demand the right to go out in public and not be killed by another citizen who has hoarded guns and ammo, legally, and then one day decided to lose control and give in to the irrational fear and paranoia that permeates the gun fetish culture.

    My right to live and be safe in public is more important than one paranoid, delusional individual’s right to hoard high powered military style assault rifles and concealed handguns with extended magazines. We need responsible, sensible gun control reform in this country. As a Veteran with combat experience in Iraq, I understand that a gun is a tool that when used properly results in something being killed. That is its purpose. It is not a fetish or a totem or some sort of surrogate for bravery. It’s a tool and they are not being used properly in this country.

    This has nothing to do with criminals getting access to weapons. This is about loose rules, loopholes, and the legal procurement of deadly weapons of mass destruction being turned on citizens. We need a national registry of firearms. We need a national ban on handgun and military style weapons. We need microstamping of ammo. And lastly, we need a cultural shift away from the fetish hoarding of guns back to the guns as tools mentality. A single household does not need an cache of weapons and ammo; a single rifle, shotgun, and revolver should easily address the needs of any one family. We need a national firearms policy. My children have a right to be safe.

    In the wake of these tragedies, that are becoming more frequent, it is finally time for us to decide whether we want to be a country full of heavily armed gun fetishists. How many children does the tree of liberty require?

    Will you, Sir, be brave enough to face the NRA and their lobbyists to help make the citizens of this country, and your constituents safer? I’m hoping you will.


    John T. Cassidy

  75. 75
    mandarama says:


    You should really check out the forum boards on these idiots. Some of them will buy the Remington 700, which is the base for the Army and Marine sniper systems and then think they’re just like snipers because they can hit things from a distacne, completely discounting the amount of training said snipers have.

    This is the first rifle I ever shot…my granddad’s Remington 700. But it was when I was a girl in the late 70s, and I don’t think it had any special features. I’m trying to remember a scope? or did it have a barrel sight…? Anyway, my granddad was proud of it because it was very accurate and his goal was to use as few bullets as possible. That’s why I don’t understand the use of semi-automatics in hunting. Most of the hunters I knew as a kid took a lot of pride in shooting the least bullets possible and having the best aim. I’m a relic, I guess. Because I can see on Facebook that the other kids of my generation who still live back home have gotten right on board with new technology–many of them went out and bought new Glocks and .38s this weekend after the CT news, some for their teens.

    I’m a suburban mom in a small city now and have no interest in guns. My kids aren’t learning anything about them, because we don’t have a lifestyle where they’re a useful tool. But when I lived on a farm, they were a part of life. One shotgun (12 gauge), one rifle (aforementioned), one handgun (.22). We had a rabid weasel come up one time, and my granddad would shoot armadillos not out of malice but because they would dig down and break the water mains, etc.

    As I got older, my dad’s drinking problem worsened–and with it, his interest in guns. He started collecting them then and would use them pretty irresponsibly, kind of like loud toys. But that’s not the way he was raised–definitely a pathology. So I feel like I’ve seen two sides of the coin on gun ownership. Luckily nothing horrible ever happened with them, though he did shoot a hole in the wall one time when mad. When he died the sheriff’s dept. confiscated a bunch of his collection for being illegal (modified or no serials).

    Anyway, my point was…that Remington was your basic farm/hunting rifle, that you’d let your grandkids learn to shoot with, and the idea that people want to sexy it up by applying military terms to it seems to indicate that the kind of pathology I started to see in my dad is really a full-scale epidemic by now.

  76. 76
    mai naem says:

    @Gin & Tonic: The main guy behind Cerberus was a huge Bush supporter and now I’m kind of assuming this – a big GOP’r. I believe I saw him on the Billionaires for Romney tumbler site.

    @Raven: I didn’t see that info. Didn’t know she had MS. MS can do stuff to your congnitive abilities but it’s usually towards the end. I wonder if Jack Welch knew the dad since he worked in tax planning for GE. Haven’t seen anything on Welch’s twitter feed.

  77. 77
    hedgehog the occasional commenter says:

    This, so much this. My senators (Udall and Bennett) both have C/F ratings from the NRA, but I’ll still be encouraging them to step up.

  78. 78

    The really perverse thing about the NRA rating chart is that the Gun Owners of America out-nut the NRA gun-nuts. Both my Senators — Baucus and Tester — have A ratings with the National Rifle Association. Know what their GOA ratings are? D- and F, respectively.

    I’ve been getting unsolicited mail from GOA lately. They are really, really despicable. I don’t know if they have any real influence, but they sure do try to move the conversation in the wrong direction.

  79. 79
    Cassidy says:

    @mandarama: It really is a great gun and, unsurprisingly, what the military chose as the basis for their sniper platforms. It’s spooky accurate. I find it hilarious, though, the the gun fetishists buy the gun and think they are the same. They don’t comprehend that military (and LE) snipers have gone through some pretty rigorous training to employ that weapon system. It boggles my mind how they can’t see the lack of logic in that. It just ties in to their personal identity crisis.

  80. 80
    Ted & Hellen says:

    Anyone else favor wide dissemination of the crime scene photos for Sandy Hook, faces blurred out?

    I think America is long overdue for photographic documentation of the gun carnage.

    That alone would do more to promote gun control laws than anything else.

    As horrible as this last few days has been, it’s all still to some extent unreal until one sees pictures.

  81. 81
    Ruckus says:

    When I was in college I also worked at a mental health center as a counselor. We did suicide hotline work as well as seeing clients weekly. One of the ways to work with distressed people was to “kick the can” to get them through the bad period because it is almost impossible to make progress when someone is in one. It all helps and moves the process along. And sometimes it is the best that can be accomplished for a bad situation. It can be very frustrating to feel that you have done nothing but that’s not true, nothing bad happened while you were talking. In the only actual suicide call I handled in almost 4 years I have no idea if the woman finally killed herself. I spent 45 of the longest minutes of my life talking to her, working with her. She sounded much better but still hung up. I will always remember that call, I was terrified that I failed to help her but I gave her 45 minutes and she didn’t have that when she called. Sometimes little victories are the best we get.

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