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August 1, 2014

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shooting in newtown:

Gunman had enough ammunition to kill almost every student at school

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Associated Press

Residents greet each other before an interfaith vigil for the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting on Sunday, Dec. 16, 2012, at Newtown High School in Newtown, Conn. A gunman walked into the elementary school Friday and opened fire, killing 26 people, including 20 children.

Connecticut state police release names of victims

  • Charlotte Bacon, 6
  • Daniel Barden, 7
  • Rachel DaVino, 29
  • Olivia Engel, 6
  • Josephine Gay, 7
  • Ana Marquez-Greene, 6
  • Dylan Hockley, 6
  • Dawn Hocksprung, 47
  • Madeleine Hsu, 6
  • Catherine Hubbard, 6
  • Chase Kowalski, 7
  • Jesse Lewis, 6
  • James Mattioli, 6
  • Grace McDonnell, 7
  • Anne Marie Murphy, 52
  • Emilie Parker, 6
  • Jack Pinto, 6
  • Noah Pozner, 6
  • Caroline Previdi, 6
  • Jessica Rekos, 6
  • Avielle Richman, 6
  • Lauren Russeau, 30
  • Mary Sherlach, 56
  • Victoria Soto, 27
  • Benjamin Wheeler, 6
  • Allison N. Wyatt, 6
  • — From the Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection website

    Connecticut Elementary School Shooting

    David Freedman, right, kneels with his son Zachary, 9, both of Newtown, Conn., as they visit a sidewalk memorial for the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victims, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2012, in Newtown, Conn. Launch slideshow »

    NEWTOWN, Conn. — The gunman in the Connecticut shooting rampage was carrying an arsenal of hundreds of rounds of especially deadly ammunition — enough to kill just about every student in the school if given enough time, authorities said Sunday, raising the chilling possibility that the bloodbath could have been far worse.

    Adam Lanza shot himself in the head just as he heard police drawing near to the classroom where he was slaughtering helpless children, but he had more ammunition at the ready in the form of multiple, high-capacity clips each capable of holding 30 bullets.

    The disclosure on Sunday sent shudders throughout this picturesque New England community as grieving families sought to comfort each other during church services devoted to impossible questions like that of a 6-year-old girl who asked her mother: "The little children, are they with the angels?"

    With so much grieving left to do, many of Newtown's 27,000 people wondered whether life could ever return to normal. And as the workweek was set to begin, parents weighed whether to send their own children back to school.

    Gov. Dannel Malloy said the shooter decided to kill himself when he heard police closing in about 10 minutes into the attack.

    "We surmise that it was during the second classroom episode that he heard responders coming and apparently at that decided to take his own life," Malloy said on ABC's "This Week."

    Authorities said they found hundreds of unused bullets at the school, which enrolled about 450 students.

    "There was a lot of ammo, a lot of clips," said state police Lt. Paul Vance. "Certainly a lot of lives were potentially saved."

    The chief medical examiner has said the ammunition was the type designed to break up inside a victim's body and inflict the maximum amount of damage, tearing apart bone and tissue.

    By late afternoon, President Barack Obama arrived to console families and speak at a vigil in memory of the 26 teachers and schoolchildren who were killed in the second-deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.

    Newtown officials couldn't say whether Sandy Hook Elementary School, would ever reopen.

    "We're just now getting ready to talk to our son about who was killed," said Robert Licata, the father of a boy who was at the school during the shooting but escaped harm. "He's not even there yet."

    Jim Agostine, superintendent of schools in nearby Monroe, said plans were being made for students from Sandy Hook to attend classes in his town this week.

    The road ahead for Newtown was clouded with grief.

    "I feel like we have to get back to normal, but I don't know if there is normal anymore," said Kim Camputo, mother of two children, ages 5 and 10, who attend a different school. "I'll definitely be dropping them off and picking them up myself for a while."

    Also Sunday, a Connecticut official said the gunman's mother was found dead in her pajamas in bed, shot four times in the head with a .22-caliber rifle. The killer then went to the school with guns he took from his mother, got inside by breaking a window and began blasting his way through the building.

    As churches opened their doors, federal agents checked out dozens of gun stores and shooting ranges across Connecticut, chasing leads they hoped would cast light on Lanza's life.

    Investigators have offered no motive for the shooting, and police have found no letters or diaries that could shed light on it.

    School officials were discussing how to send survivors back to class, but Newtown police Lt. George Sinko said he "would find it very difficult" for students to return to the school.

    "We want to keep these kids together," he added. "They need to support each other."

    Jennifer Waters, who at 6 is the same age as many of the dead but attends another school, came to Mass at Saint Rose of Lima Roman Catholic church with lots of questions.

    "The little children — are they with the angels?" she asked her mother.

    Joan Waters assured her daughter that they were, then hushed the child as services continued with boxes of tissues placed in each pew and window sill.

    At a later Mass at St. Rose of Lima, the priest stopped midway through the service and told worshippers to leave, because someone had phoned in a threat. Police searched the church and the rectory but found nothing dangerous.

    An overflow crowd of more than 800 people packed the church where eight children will be buried this week. Lanza and his mother also attended the church. Spokesman Brian Wallace said the diocese has yet to be asked to provide funerals for either.

    In his homily, the Rev. Jerald Doyle tried to answer the question of how parishioners could find joy in a holiday season with so much sorrow.

    "You won't remember what I say, and it will become unimportant," he said. "But you will really hear deep down that word that will finally and ultimately bring peace and joy. That is the word by which we live. That is the word by which we hope. That is the word by which we love."

    The rifle used was a Bushmaster .223-caliber, a civilian version of the military's M-16 and a model commonly seen at marksmanship competitions. It's similar to the weapon used in the 2002 sniper killings in the Washington, D.C., area and in a recent shopping mall shooting in Oregon.

    Versions of the AR-15 were outlawed in the United States under the 1994 assault weapons ban. That law expired in 2004, and Congress, in a nod to the political clout of the gun-rights lobby, did not renew it.

    Investigators have said they believe Adam Lanza attended Sandy Hook many years ago, but they couldn't explain why he went there Friday.

    Authorities said Lanza had no criminal history, and it was not clear whether he had a job.

    A law enforcement official, speaking on condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to discuss the unfolding investigation, has said Lanza had been diagnosed with Asperger's, a mild form of autism often characterized by social awkwardness.

    People with the disorder are often highly intelligent. While they can become frustrated more easily, there is no evidence of a link between Asperger's and violent behavior, experts say.

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    1. Bob "Realist", His mother was a part time teacher with weapons and she was the first victim in what started as a family member shooting and killing a family member. If this teacher didn't have the weapons twenty children would be alive today. But you just keep comforting yourself with the notion that three hundred million guns just isn't enough to make us all safe.

    2. The real issue in this as well as all other mass killings is not the gun, it is the need for better care for the mentally ill. Why is no one talking about this? All we do is go and blame the gun. For we ban the gun then what knives after that? (Oh, wait some guy in China slashed 30 kids over the weekend. Time to ban knives!) Then what baseball bats because you could kill people with those... Don't forget to ban cars, rocks, bricks, etc. It is not the gun that is killing these people, it is the person behind the weapon who is doing it!

    3. l remember a teenager in 1970s NJ who axed his parents to death while they were sleeping. He then jumped off a water tower in the neighborhood to his death. In a letter the police found in their home he admitted his intent to kill his parents because he felt they would not be able to deal with the repercussions of his suicide.

    4. Like BChap I have no idea how to prevent this kind of incident or even why these incidents occur. All I know is that, of the nations with Western culture and ideas, the United States is by far the most violent. I don't think that we have more mentally ill per capita. We do have a violent culture evidenced by our television, movies and video games but those are marketed and available world-wide. Our nation was originally settled by malcontents who couldn't get along with others largely due to their judgemental puritanical lifestyle but that tendency is long gone. Our access to firearms is pretty open compared to others but, regulation aside, many folks in Europe own and use firearms.

      I'm a believer in firearms registration and licensing owners/users. Too many people buy a firearm for "protection", plink off a couple of clips at the range and never take a safety course or renew their skills or anything. I buy into the car analogy...license, registration, insurance....ownership responsibility without infringement upon the right to own.

      SCOTUS, in the DC case, said that government could apply reasonable limitations on firearm ownership. That ruling from a conservative majority.

      We're not going to start screening possible mental illness cases. If that were the case the feds would be tracking down those of us who regularly post on these threads. Should we now round up every kid with Asperger's?

      Military combat training is what it is because they have to break down a person's ingrained reluctance to killing another human being. We are apparently wired to defend ourselves and kin units but not to egregiously kill. That suggests that random/serial killers have loose wiring in the control circuits.

      Those only thing that I know is that these incidents diminish us a a people and as a culture.

    5. This should not be able gun control. It should be about the deranged killer. A monster living among us. Control that and the tragedy wouldn't have happened. But how are you going to do that?

      If he didn't have access to a rifle, do you honestly think the tragedy would have never happened? He could have fashioned a bomb from fertilizer and parts from a hardware store.

      But something tells me someone knew there was a monster living among us. And did nothing.

    6. GoBruins uses the typically bad logic on the right to do everything to misdirect people away from the ease with which people with assault style weapons can slaughter people wholesale. If the person hiding behind "GoBruins" really believes that baseball bats and knives are just as effective as assault rifles then it should just melt it's weapons down in favor of buying a set steak knives. Or, alternatively, it could admit there is something qualitatively different about Bushmasters. For those who want to see such arguments completely logically demolished see here:
      http://www.guninformation.org/

    7. Enough with the finger pointing. TV did this. TV did that. Hollywood is to blame. Mentally ill people caused this. Arm the teachers. Blah blah. ENOUGH.

      What I want to see is for our elected politicians to sit down in a room and talk about this issue. A serious discussion. Without idiots in the room who just want to sell more guns. I want to see everything on the table, all avenues pursued, EVERYTHING talked about to preclude an animalistic massacre happening like this ever again in the United States of America.

      No more of the stupid rhetoric that gets no one nowhere. And I damn sure don't want to hear another syllable uttered by the nonsensical NRA and other pro-gun lobbyists. Because according to them, you fix the problem by arming EVERY DAMN BODY.

      I am glad to see even Senator Reid, who has never addressed this issue much, is now starting to tilt towards the idea somebody somewhere has gotta do something.

      I don't care which side of the political side of the aisle starts spouting pro-gun crap. Throw them outta the room. I'm tired of people with an agenda getting in the way of doing what is right. And what is common sense and rational. If they aren't there to help and only hinder, they need to get outta the way. Hell, put me in the room. I'll throw anyone out who starts spouting Second Amendment rights blindly without any regard for human life.

      The time is now.

      Not later.

      NOW.

      Somebody sit down and start talking about this.

      The American people, the vast majority of them, are counting on this happening.

      I personally don't care what gets done, just so long as SOMETHING gets done. Explore all sides of this issue. The main goal is to prevent it from happening again.

      Because right now, all indications show everyone is turning a blind eye to the issue.

      You CANNOT tell me the NRA and the pro-gun lobby is that strong in America. Someone needs to strongly suggest they shut up. So that adults in the room can talk and try to save lives. I'm personally sick and tired of the debacle they cause, and their perceived power over politicians, all so they can sell more and more and more and more guns.

      If this continues on as the norm, bodies will continue to pile up. Sounds macabre, but to continue on like we are now, it is simply a horrible fact that cannot be denied.

    8. From my link:
      "MYTH:"Guns don't kill, people kill people" is a good argument against gun control.
      TRUTH: This pro-gun argument makes about as much sense as claiming that "glasses don't see, eyes see" is a good argument against wearing glasses. Glasses are a tool which help people to see just as guns are a tool that help people to kill and injure others. Empirical research indicates that firearms increase the chances that a crime will turn deadly. A study done by the National Commission on the Causes and Prevention of Violence reported that a victim is about five times more likely to survive if an attacker is armed with a knife rather than a gun (source). Furthermore, The International Crime Victim Survey concluded that there is a correlation between gun ownership and an increase in both homicide and suicide. "The present study, based on a sample of eighteen countries, confirms the result of previous work based on the 14 countries surveyed during the first International Crime Survey. Substantial correlations were found between gun ownership and gun-related as well as total homicide and suicide rates. Widespread gun ownership has not been found to reduce the likelihood of fatal events committed with other means. Thus, people do not turn to knives and other potententially lethal weapons less often when more guns are available, but more guns usually means more victims of homicide and suicide." (source- PDF File)."

    9. Killing with a knife or blunt instrument is extremely personal. A gun makes it easy.
      One in five takes psychotropic meds for mental illness. How about a law that requires families with mentally people to keep guns locked up. In many of these killings the killers got the weapons from family members.
      I used to go out with the Department of Children's Services and check whether or not children were fed properly, educated, not abused and various other things.

      Yet this woman apparently had a child that was severely disturbed and a house full of unsecured guns. Absolutely ridiculous.

      There should also be a database of the people in this country that are mentally ill and that database should be linked to the firearms background check.

    10. For a change I agree with Future.
      However, read the 2d Amend. Then read the notes and letters from the people who wrote and passed this Amend. in the late 18th century. We as a country feared being overrun by another nation, when all we had were loosely put together Militia's. The only way we could protect ourselves against these invaders was to have our people armed. Today we have the best military in the world to protect us. We have quality police departments to protect our property. We as a people do not need assault weapons for protection.
      Also, we need to get our mentally ill the care and treatment they need. Federal and state legislatures have decimated this care in recent years.

    11. So it comes down to two choices:

      A: Stricter gun control laws or banning guns altogether. When a deranged gunman starts killing innocent people all the victims must wait for the police to arrive and pray for the best.

      B: Carry permits, even in schools etc. A deranged guman starts killing innocent people, someone shoots back (even at the risk of accidently shooting others) and likely distracts, injures or kills the gunman saving lives.

      To me the choice is obvious.

    12. And as usual (see the archives here on the LV Sun web site) Mark Schaffer demands stricter gun control laws despite all of the evidence showing that gun control laws do NOT reduce gun crime.

      Q. How about reinstating the assault weapon ban?
      A. If the assault weapon ban had been an effective tool, there should have been a decrease in gun crime after it went into effect and an increase in gun crime after it expired. This not what happened, so we can say that the assault weapon ban was not an effective tool.

      Q. But countries with strict gun control laws like the UK have lower rates of gun crime. Why don't we emulate them?
      A. The UK had lower rates of gun crime than the US before the ban on handguns. The data shows that the rate of violent crime and gun crime have INCREASED in the UK since gun ownership was restricted.

      Q. But wouldn't banning these types of weapons at least prevent tragedies like this one?
      A. No. Norway has stricter gun control laws than all of the ones being proposed here. In July 2011 it also saw 77 people massacred by an armed lunatic on a rampage.

      Q. But what about the jurisdictions in the US that saw the light and passed strict gun control laws in response to their growing violent crime and gun crime rates?
      A. Pretty much all of them have failed to see any reduction in those areas as a result of the new laws. Massachusetts, for example, saw serious increases in all violent crime categories, including gun crime, since passage of strict gun control laws.

      Q. But there are way too many guns. If we reduce the number of guns we will at least reduce the number of gun crimes, right?
      A. The FBI data on gun crime rates going back over the last 100 years do not show any correlation at all between the number of guns int he US and the number of gun crimes or per capita rates of gun crime.

      So I would ask that anyone insisting that we need stricter gun control laws or bans on some or all guns at least look at what has been tried in the past that DIDN'T work and make sure they are proposing something different. Bans on assault weapons, bans on handguns, strict licensing requirements, background checks, and limits on number of guns or amount of ammunition have all been tried....and failed.

    13. For all those screaming for stricter gun control laws, just look to Chicago which has the strictest gun control laws in the nation. The laws are completely ineffective.

      This issue is a good example of the major difference between liberals and conservatives: Liberals are idealists while conservatives are realists.

    14. 300 million guns is a national disgrace. Chicago is a classic example. People bring guns in from outside Chicago and use them to slaughter people in Chicago. Same is occurring in Mexico. Guns manufactured in the United States are slaughtering people all over North America and beyond.

    15. People are going to use guns to shoot back? Sure they will. Many southern states have very high levels of gun violence. How many shoot back? Is the wife going to shoot back when her husband pulls a gun? Familial violence is a major part of the gun violence equation.

      The mother of the deranged kid was armed to the teeth. Did she shoot back?

    16. gerry says "300 million guns is a national disgrace."

      Really? Why?

      As already stated the FBI statistics on violent crime and gun crime clearly demonstrate that there is NO correlation whatsoever between the number of guns and the number or rate of crimes.

      So why do you feel that the number of guns needs to be reduced? The data shows that it wouldn't result in a decrease in gun crime or violent crime....so what result are you expecting from it?

    17. Close to a million dead over the last 30 years. Countless injured and uncompensated medical costs in the hundreds of billions of dollars might be a start.
      Screw the guns, get rid of the bullets. "Guns don't kill people bullets do".

      Nearly every major US hospital is on the brink of collapse due to uncompensated care costs. Violence is a part of the equation. The gun lobby should kick some $$$$ to all these hospitals caring for gunshot victims. It costs billions a year.

      I believe the first US face transplant was a guy that blew his face off with a shotgun. Cost $millions.

      Isn't Nevada the state where a woman will most likely be shot to death by her husband. Not so good for the gals!!

      The idea that gun proliferation has nothing to due with this nonsense.

    18. Simple question, if a deranged gunman broke into your childs classroom and started shooting, would you prefer the teacher to be armed or unarmed?

    19. It wouldn't matter in the slightest. They would be dead regardless. The military has to fire 250,000 rounds to kill one guy. A kindergarten teacher with a snub nose is going to deal with an armed gunman with a semi auto rifle and body armor. The schools don't have enough money to teach kids math. Who is going to arm and extensively train all the teachers.

      Lets get real!
      http://jonathanturley.org/2011/01/10/gao...

    20. gerry says "The idea that gun proliferation has nothing to due with this nonsense."

      Ah, the cry of the desperate man when the data doesn't support his conclusions. Damn the actual real world data....I know that my opinion MUST be right so therefore it is!

      You can believe that gun proliferation has led to increases in gun violence if you want to.....but the data doesn't support that belief any more than if you believe that the world is flat.

    21. That's right Mr. Gladu. Guns have nothing to due with gun violence. Nearly every gun killing in the developed world a result of our gun industry.
      What did the Norway killer use?? A Ruger mini 14. 68,000 Americans guns confiscated in Mexico. Nearly 50,000 dead....fantastic.
      What are the chances a wimpy kid could wipe out a school without firearms? Nil. Kids would not even make the attempt.

    22. gerry, just because you insist that there is a cause and effect relationship doesn't make it true.

      Man up and accept that the real world data says that you are wrong.

      And scotchman, cite your data to support your claim.....because the numbers provided by the goverment are:
      Gun crimes in 1998/1999: 5,208
      Gun crimes in 2007/2008: 9,865

      Seems like that would be an INCREASE in gun crimes, specifically an 89% increase.

      In some areas, Lancashire for example, the number went from 50 to 349, a 598% increase.

      Gun deaths/injuries:
      1998/1999: 864
      2007/2008: 1,760
      That's a 104% increase

      So the data completely supports what I said...but feel free to cite any actual data you have that you think shows differently.

    23. Gun deaths UK.....about 50
      Here........ 28,000
      Even when you adjust for population it is one hell of a spread.

    24. It is irrational to state, believe or assume that the framers of the Constitution would have defended the legality of personal armories, personal ammunition dumps and weapons of mass destruction such as those used here.

      With the National Rifle Association, money and their own ideology built on greed and mock terrorism is more important than human life. An what is such a tickle, is that over 95% of them consider themselves as being Saved, or was that just last week?

    25. The only "solution" to these types of attacks, the only thing that can stop them from happening? Nothing really, let's be realistic and honest here. A crazy person intent on causing mayhem will use a bomb, a knife, a baseball bat, a bucket of gas and a lighter, whatever if need be. (sorry if that gave any crazy person any ideas). So then, if you can't stop attacks, what can you do to limit the mayhem? You all know the answer, but it's not being discussed. The only way to stop this is to have trained and armed response in situ at schools, malls, movie theaters, etc. Also, having more armed citizens that could also take out a would be baby killer. Those are the facts. Does Obama or the lib's want to do this? No. Do they admit it is the only solution? No, not out loud, but they know this is the only solution given the facts. (like the fact you can't take a criminals guns or prevent a crazy person from going on a rampage)

    26. gerry says "Gun deaths UK.....about 50"

      And there were 39 gun deaths in the UK the year before the handgun ban went into effect. So gun deaths in the UK are higher now then they were before the gun ban.

      So tell us again how restrictions on guns will reduce gun deaths?

    27. Mr. Gladu, you're cherry-picking statistics and comparing apples to oranges.

      I, too, can throw statistics out there.

      "The US homicide rates were 6.9 times higher than rates in the other high-income countries, driven by firearm homicide rates that were 19.5 times higher. For 15-year olds to 24-year olds, firearm homicide rates in the United States were 42.7 times higher than in the other countries. For US males, firearm homicide rates were 22.0 times higher, and for US females, firearm homicide rates were 11.4 times higher. The US firearm suicide rates were 5.8 times higher than in the other countries, though overall suicide rates were 30% lower. The US unintentional firearm deaths were 5.2 times higher than in the other countries. Among these 23 countries, 80% of all firearm deaths occurred in the United States, 86% of women killed by firearms were US women, and 87% of all children aged 0 to 14 killed by firearms were US children."

      "Homicide rates among the US population between 15 and 24 years of age are 14 times higher than those in most other industrialized nations. Children from 5 to 14 years old are 11 times more likely to be killed in an accidental shooting. Within the US, areas with high gun ownership have higher rates of these problems. And, for every accidental death, Hemenway cites research that indicates 10 more incidents are sufficient to send someone to the emergency room. Suicides are more likely to be successful when guns are involved, even though most people who survive such an attempt don't generally try a second time."

      "In a first-of its-kind study, epidemiologists at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine found that, on average, guns did not protect those who possessed them from being shot in an assault. The study estimated that people with a gun were 4.5 times more likely to be shot in an assault than those not possessing a gun."

      Since you have asserted there is no correlation between the number of guns in the United States and gun violence, I must ask you: why are homicide rates so much higher in America than in other, similar countries?

    28. Secondly, you asserted that the gun control laws in the U.K. prove that banning firearms does not reduce firearm-related homicide. Your evidence was, apparently, a single year. I'm not sure you understand what the term "outlier" means, but I'd invite you to look it up in a dictionary.

      Third, if your assertion is true, that strict gun laws result in increased gun violence, how do you explain Australia?

      "At the heart of the push was a massive buyback of more than 600,000 semi-automatic shotguns and rifles, or about one-fifth of all firearms in circulation in Australia. The country's new gun laws prohibited private sales, required that all weapons be individually registered to their owners, and required that gun buyers present a "genuine reason" for needing each weapon at the time of the purchase. (Self-defense did not count.) In the wake of the tragedy, polls showed public support for these measures at upwards of 90 percent."

      "What happened next has been the subject of several academic studies. Violent crime and gun-related deaths did not come to an end in Australia, of course. But as the Washington Post's Wonkblog pointed out in August, homicides by firearm plunged 59 percent between 1995 and 2006, with no corresponding increase in non-firearm-related homicides. The drop in suicides by gun was even steeper: 65 percent. Studies found a close correlation between the sharp declines and the gun buybacks. Robberies involving a firearm also dropped significantly. Meanwhile, home invasions did not increase, contrary to fears that firearm ownership is needed to deter such crimes. But here's the most stunning statistic. In the decade before the Port Arthur massacre, there had been 11 mass shootings in the country. There hasn't been a single one in Australia since."

      A reasonable, logical person might assert that the U.K. might have suffered an outlier year or might have a poorly-written or enforced law.

      And that same person could assert that Australia's law is a model that we could try.

      Funally, using municipal regulations or state laws as examples of gun control failure is also irrelevant, given what's proposed are federal laws. Hopefully, one does not have to explain the difference to you.

    29. Second amendment has been perverted by todays high capacity/high power weaponry.2nd amendment was written for muskets and derringers, not ak47s, Bushmasters, 100 round drums for semi-automatic rifles and 30 round clips for 9mm handguns,which really have no hunting applications and instead have been used to slaughter women and children.Change is coming.Deal with it.

    30. Only thing I know is if you leave this up to the NRA to solve, it is easy to predict what they will say. Buy, buy, buy. More guns, more guns, more guns.

      According to the NRA, you are hurting the deer hunters if you enact gun control laws. They act like Bambi is packing more heat than the hunters, so it's logical that you arm them more than a front line soldier in Afghanistan.

      People need to understand the NRA does not stand for pro-gun.

      They stand for pro-gun manufacturer.

      They don't care what the gun is used for, they just want to sell guns. If an entire American city wakes up on morning and blasts away at each other, they could care less. They just want money rolling in. And they will tell you anything to ensure the moolah keeps pouring in. Feed that paranoia. That's all they're about. Because it's lucrative to line their pockets.

      People need to rise up and render that lobby ineffective. They have nothing to contribute to this conversation. And if people listen to them, the bodies will continue to pile up with mindless violence.

    31. kevin says "Since you have asserted there is no correlation between the number of guns in the United States and gun violence, I must ask you: why are homicide rates so much higher in America than in other, similar countries?"

      I don't know the answer to that. I am simply pointing out that those who claim that the US has higher homicide rate BECAUSE of easy access to guns are making that claim without any actual statistical evidence to back it up.

      As far as "outliers" go....you shot yourself in the foot. If the UK numbers I cited were outliers you would have provided statistics for other years showing such. But you can't because the statistics for gun crime in the UK have been higher EVERY year than they were prior to the gun ban.
      http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/44...

      And as for Australia, your statistics overlook that there had been a steady downward trend in gun crime and suicides preceding the ban and that the rate of decline did not increase as a result of the gun ban.

      Don Weatherburn, the head of the New South Wales Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research said that the level of legal gun ownership in New South Wales increased in recent years, and that the 1996 legislation had had little to no effect on violence.

      In 2006, the lack of a measurable effect from the 1996 firearms legislation was reported in the British Journal of Criminology.

      You also said "But here's the most stunning statistic. In the decade before the Port Arthur massacre, there had been 11 mass shootings in the country. There hasn't been a single one in Australia since." which is false as you apparently choose to ignore the 2002 Monash University shooting of seven people.

      So even the experts agree that Australia's gun ban did not show a measurable cause and effect relationship with regard to gun crime and gun deaths in Australia.

      So yes, I agree that we should look at Australia's gun ban as a model. It is accepted as an example of legislation that completely failed to produce any measurable results and that should pay attention to as an example of what NOT to do.

    32. Colin says "I personally don't care what gets done, just so long as SOMETHING gets done. Explore all sides of this issue. The main goal is to prevent it from happening again."

      and also

      "People need to rise up and render that lobby ineffective. They have nothing to contribute to this conversation"

      and

      "I don't care which side of the political side of the aisle starts spouting pro-gun crap. Throw them outta the room. I'm tired of people with an agenda getting in the way of doing what is right"

      So your definition of "Explore all sides of this issue" is ignore anyone who disagrees with the position you have already decided on.

      Forget pro-gun or anti-gun. I am anti bad legislation.

      I will support any gun control law proposed where you can show solid real-world evidence showing that a similar law has been demonstrated to have a direct cause and effect relationship achieving the desired results (reduction of gun crime or gun death, prevention of massacres, etc.)

      But I will vocally oppose any proposed legislation that is the same as what has already been tried before and has failed to produce the desired results. (some examples are outlined in my post above, such as bans on certain types of guns, total bans on guns, restrictions of quantity of guns or ammo, etc.)

      Now, should you ask what legislation I would support.....

      I do agree that gun ownership should require training, testing and certification far more stringent than what it takes to operate a car. I feel that there should be periodic (annual?) retesting and re-certification requirements.

      But in all fairness I think those same criteria should apply to having a voters registration card too.

    33. Charles Gladu lacks credibility by omitting one simple step, citing the sources of his quotes. He has displayed a lack of ability to discern good research from bad.

    34. Mark, I have provided the sources for those statistics multiple times. The source for the Connecticut and Massachusetts crime figures were a site YOU linked to trying to show that gun control laws work....except that you failed to actually read the sites you linked to. You and I have traded these same comments over and over here with the same glaring exception....that YOU have never provide any data to back your claims.

      For everyone else, they are free to click on my name here, look at the archive of comments I've made and see the source citations for every single one of the statistics I reiterate above.

      But hey, let's look at one YOU linked to....guninformation.org. In their first paragraph they try to debunk the claim that violent crime has risen in the UK with a link to a Home Office publication showing...that if you ALTER the numbers there MAY be a 5% decrease in crime...except that the example cited and graphed isn't for violent crime.
      http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/pdfs2/h...

      Let's look that that exact document and go to page 104 and look at Table 3.04 "Recorded crime by offence" and see what the homicide and violent crime numbers are since the gun ban:
      Homicide 1998/99 - 750
      Homicide 1999/00 - 766
      Homicide 2000/01 - 850
      Homicide 2001/02 - 886

      Possession of Weapons 1998/99 - 23,635
      Possession of Weapons 1999/00 - 23,792
      Possession of Weapons 2000/01 - 24,552
      Possession of Weapons 2001/02 - 28,740

      Assault on a Constable 1998/99 - 21,510
      Assault on a Constable 1999/00 - 26,115
      Assault on a Constable 2000/01 - 28,000
      Assault on a Constable 2001/02 - 30,010

      Common Assault 1998/99 - 151,469
      Common Assault 1999/00 - 189,783
      Common Assault 2000/01 - 203,427
      Common Assault 2001/02 - 226,451

      So even with the data YOU cited, it supports my statement that not only did the gun ban not result in a decrease in violent crime in the UK, it resulted in an INCREASE.