Posts Tagged ‘gun safety laws’

NRA Counter-Proposal?

February 26, 2018

NRA Counter-Proposal?

After the horror of the Parkland school shooting, many were outraged that the perpetrator was able to buy a military-style rifle at the age of 18, when he was still too young to buy beer.  President Trump has suggested raising the minimum age for purchasing an assault rifle to 21, and so has Florida Governor Rick Scott, but the NRA isn’t having it. To address the gun/beer inequity, we expect the NRA to propose lowering the legal drinking age to 18 any day now.


Short link:

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Add to: Facebook | Digg | | Stumbleupon | Reddit | Blinklist | Twitter | Technorati | Yahoo Buzz | Newsvine

‘America’s Rifle,’ American Carnage

February 19, 2018

'America's Rifle,' American Carnage

In the February 14th school shooting in Parkland Florida, 17 people were killed with an AR-15 type rifle, legally purchased by an 18-year-old American citizen too young to legally buy beer. It has long been known that the assault-style AR-15, which the NRA calls “America’s Rifle,” is the mass killer’s weapon of choice. After an assault-style weapon killed 5 children at a school in Stockton California in 1994, Congress passed a ban on the civilian sale of semi-automatic assault-style firearms and high-capacity magazines, but the law was allowed to expire in 2004. Since then, such massacres have increased 183 percent with a 239 percent increase in massacre deaths.

After 2004, U.S. gun manufacturers re-branded variants of the military-derived AR-15 as the “Modern Sporting Rifle” even though the gun is terrible for hunting. It was designed to do maximum damage to the human body. Just ask Dean L. Winslow, MD.

It’s not just this Florida school shooting. Assault-style rifles have been used in recent mass killings in Aurora Colorado (22 dead), Newtown Connecticut (26 dead), Santa Monica California (6 dead), Colorado Springs (3 dead), San Bernardino (14 dead), Orlando (49 dead), Las Vegas Nevada (58 dead), Roseburg Oregon (9 dead), and Sutherland Springs Texas (26 dead).

Is it time to bring back the assault weapon ban? The surviving students at Parkland’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School seem to think so. The Second Amendment shouldn’t be a suicide pact. The Founding Fathers never saw an AR-15.


“The AR-15: ‘America’s rifle’ or illegitimate killing machine?” Marc Fisher, Washington Post

“Mass shootings are getting deadlier. And the latest ones all have something new in common: The AR-15,” Matt Pearce, Lost Angeles Times

“Nothing in the Constitution Prevents Sensible Gun Rules,” Cass R. Sunstein, Bloomberg

“Laws we used to have on the books could have prevented the Florida school shooting,” Robert J. Spitzer, Washington Post

“No one becomes a mass shooter without a mass-shooting gun,” George Skelton, Los Angeles Times

“Top GOP Donor Cuts Off Opponents of Assault Weapon Ban,” Chas Danner, New York Magazine

“Shooting survivors to press for gun control,” AP via ABC News

“Florida school shooting: Students demand tighter gun controls,” BBC News

“Florida high school superintendent shares calls for ‘commonsense gun laws,’” Josh Delk, The Hill

“Florida massacre: Broward Sheriff Scott Israel’s plea for gun control,” Kyle Swenson, Washington Post

“Ex-CIA chief: Congress must act now to block access to semiautomatic weapons,” Jacqueline Thomsen, The Hill

“A Republican Governor Just Called for a Ban on Assault Weapons,” Dan Friedman, Mother Jones

“At vigil for Florida shooting victims, students who survived the attack chant, ‘No more guns!'” Catherine Garcia, The Week

“Stoneman Douglas survivors are emerging as the sanest voices on gun control,” Karen Hao, Quartz

“Murdoch’s New York Post shifts on assault-weapons ban, after Florida school shooting,” Callum Borchers, Washington Post

“All the things Fox News blamed the Parkland shooting on other than the gun,” Adam Epstein, Quartz

“Florida students protest Trump, NRA,” Morgan Gstalter, The Hill

“Surviving Teens of Parkland Massacre Tell NRA to Shove Its ‘Thoughts and Prayers,’ and Plan March on Washington,” Angela Helm, The Root

“Shooting survivor to NRA: ‘Don’t you dare come back here,’” Rebecca Savransky, The Hill

“Shooting suspect was on school rifle team that got NRA grant,” Michael Biesecker and Collin Binkley, Associated Press

“Outside NRA headquarters, hundreds gather in vigil and protest,” Clarence Williams, Washington Post

“NRA Goes Quiet on Twitter, Just Like After Previous Mass Shootings,” Matt Novak, Gismodo

“FBI investigating whether Russian money went to NRA to help Trump,” Peter Stone and Greg Gordon, McClatchy News

“NRA contributions: how much money is spent on lawmakers?” Lauren Gambino, The Guardian

“Have your representatives in Congress received donations from the NRA?” Aaron Williams, Washington Post

“Lawmakers use campaign funds for NRA dues,” Ben Wieder, McClatchy News

“The NRA’s step-by-step playbook for responding to a mass shooting,” Heather Timmons, Quartz


“Five types of gun laws the Founding Fathers loved,” Saul Cornell, The Conversation

“Florida shooting survivor: We should call AR-15s ‘Marco Rubio’ because they’re both easy to buy,” Brandon Carter, The Hill


Short link:

Image (“Old Glory”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht,

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Add to: Facebook | Digg | | Stumbleupon | Reddit | Blinklist | Twitter | Technorati | Yahoo Buzz | Newsvine

Now Is Not the Time?

October 3, 2017

Now Is Not the Time?

59 people are dead and 527 injured after a man opened fire on the audience at a country music concert in Las Vegas. Can tragedies like this be prevented? Our elected officials must be working on that now, right?

According to White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, “there will certainly be a time for that policy discussion to take place, but that’s not the place that we’re in at this moment.”

You’ve heard this before, every single time Americans slaughter their fellow citizens with mass gunfire. After the Pulse nightclub, the Aurora movie theater, Virginia Tech, Sandy Hook Elementary SchoolLuby’s Cafeteria in KilleenMcDonald’s in San Ysidro, and Columbine High School.

So we can’t talk about sensible gun control measures after a senseless mass killing. It’s like that guy who won’t fix the hole in his roof when it’s raining because he doesn’t want to get wet, and when the sun shines he says he doesn’t need to fix it.


“Now is exactly the right time to talk about gun politics,” Mark Kelly, Washington Post

“Chuck Todd: ‘Why is now not the time’ to talk about gun violence?” Josh Delk, The Hill

“Mass shootings are an American problem. There’s an American solution.” Chris Murphy, Washington Post

“If Newtown Wasn’t Enough, Why Would Las Vegas Be Enough?” Charles P. Pierce, Esquire

“Why ‘thoughts and prayers’ is starting to sound so profane,” Kirsten Powers, Washington Post

“We don’t need your prayers in Sin City. We need gun control,” C. Moon Reed, Los Angeles Times

“Washington’s Ritualized Response to Mass Shootings,” Ryan Lizza, The New Yorker


Bobby Jindal: ‘Not the Time’ to Consider Gun Law Reform

July 27, 2015

Bobby Jindal: 'Not the Time' to Consider Gun Law Reform
On Friday Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (R) said that it is too soon after the mass shooting in a Lafayette movie theater to discuss gun control reform. By that logic it will never be a good time to talk about gun safety laws in Louisiana, since the rate of gun deaths in the Pelican State is the highest in the country. Discussion of rational policies to reduce firearms violence will always be preempted as citizens mourn Louisiana’s newest gunshot victims.

Come to think of it, that kind of neglect is perfectly consistent with the rest of Governor Jindal’s public health policy.


The Gekas Loophole

July 25, 2015

The Gekas Loophole
On April 16th, 21-year-old Dylann Roof was allowed to purchase a 45 caliber Glock handgun from retailer Shooter’s Choice of West Columbia SC, despite his arrest, indictment, and his pending trial for felony possession of a narcotic prescription drug. Why was this sale permitted? The FBI is taking the blame for an incomplete background check, but the purchase went through because of the gentleman pictured above, former Congressman George W. Gekas, who represented Pennsylvania’s 17th District for 20 years.

When the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act was on the House floor in 1993, Rep. Gekas (R, PA-17) introduced Amendment 390, requiring a technologically impossible “instant background check” and, if the FBI couldn’t clear the purchaser within five days (later 3 days) then the sale could go through. This “Gekas Loophole” or “default proceed sale” provision was added, the bill passed, and President Clinton signed it into law.

Today, explains the New York Times‘ Michael S. Schmidt:

“Many major gun retailers, like Walmart, will not sell a weapon if they do not have an answer from the F.B.I., because of the fear of public criticism if the gun is used in a crime. The marginal sale of one gun means little to the bottom line of a large dealer, which is not the case for smaller stores like the one that sold Mr. Roof his gun.”


The NRA Explains It All To You

December 21, 2012

The NRA Explains It All To You

In memory of the victims of the Sandy Hook school shootings, many Americans observed a moment of silence this morning at 9:30 AM. At 11:00 AM there was talk; the National Rifle Association tried to deflect blame for the massacre from the military-style weapon and high-capacity magazines that enabled it, claiming that violent video games have somehow caused this catastrophe and the mass shootings that occur every two weeks somewhere in the USA. According to NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre:

“And here’s another dirty little truth that the media try their best to conceal: There exists in this country a callous, corrupt and corrupting shadow industry that sells, and sows, violence against its own people.

Through vicious, violent video games with names like Bulletstorm, Grand Theft Auto, Mortal Kombat and Splatterhouse. And here’s one: it’s called Kindergarten Killers. It’s been online for 10 years. How come my research department could find it and all of yours either couldn’t or didn’t want anyone to know you had found it?”