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How To Reduce Shootings, Plus Himes: It Might Prevent The Next One … Or The One After That … Or The One After That

November 6th, 2017 · 36 Comments · National Politics, News and Events

Sandy Hook. Las Vegas. Sutherland, Texas. Donald Trump tossed out the default line “mental health” after the latest mass shooting. Some would argue, based on his first-year decisions in office, he knows an awful lot about that subject. Others describe it as a double standard. What if a guy named Mohammad blew up that church? Ironically, Trump made the declaration in Japan, a country with one of the lowest gun-related incidents in the world. See story here about how to reduce shootings.

From the article:

For skeptics who think that gun laws don’t make a difference, consider what happened in two states, Missouri and Connecticut. In 1995, Connecticut required background checks before obtaining a gun, while in 2007 Missouri eased gun laws.

The upshot? After tightening gun laws, firearm homicide rates dropped 40 percent in Connecticut. And after Missouri eased gun laws, gun homicide rates rose 25 percent.

Congressman Jim Himes (CT-04) released the following statement after the deadly shooting in Sutherland, Texas left dozens killed and wounded:

“In Texas, yesterday, we witnessed another of the deadliest mass shootings in American history, where worshippers in the First Baptist Church in Sutherland, young and old, were indiscriminately gunned down. A place of peace and community turned into a nightmare. Once again, the brave first responders who rushed toward danger deserve our thanks, as the victims and their families deserve our compassion and mourning.

“I pledged, after the brutal killing at Pulse in Orlando, to end my silence in the face of the gun violence onslaught. When seemingly every type of open venue–schools, churches, festivals, movie theaters, clubs, everywhere we go for community, friendship or time with our families–has been targeted by this terror, Congress’s silence is more deafening that ever. We must act. We must try something for the sake of all the innocent lives lost and the lives we could still save.

“Last week, I introduced a bill with Senator Richard Blumenthal that would, in part, make it harder for individuals subject to temporary protection orders because of domestic violence to buy or possess firearms. I don’t know if it would have made a difference in yesterday’s tragedy, but it might prevent the next one. Or the one after that. Or the one after that. Or the one after that. And just because smart, incremental change can’t prevent every death, doesn’t mean we should throw up our hands in despair. We should work to prevent the dangers we can anticipate, and react to the mistakes of the past to stop as much bloodshed as we can. That is Congress’s job. That is our duty. And we are failing.”

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36 Comments so far ↓

  • Andrew C Fardy

    There is no simple answer to this problem but one thing that might help is a MANDATORY jail sentence of 5 years if you are caught with an unlicensed hand gun, no plea bargaining just a mandatory sentence.
    Will it stop all of these shootings? No but it could limit acess to illegal guns.

  • Robert Teixeira

    Hey dumb-ass didn’t you hear your president? We have a “mental health problem” not a “criminal Problem” Leftist NBC Joe forgot one thing. Not only would the Republican conversation b would be different too if the gunman was black. The sound of silence. #Jimhimes

    http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/2017/09/27/nashville-church-shooting-family-friends-gather-wake-mourn-slain-victim/709659001/

    PS dumb-ass there is a simple answer,stop illing each other.

    • Robert Teixeira

      Not only would the Republican conversation be different, but the Democrat conversation would be different too. if the gunman was black.

    • The Bridgeport Kid

      Hey Robert,

      YOU ARE THE DUMB ASS. When was the last time you read the news about gun violence in America?

      Sunday’s mass shooting at a Baptist church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, was the fifth-worst in recent U.S. history, and came just a month after the worst such massacre at a country-music concert in Las Vegas, which was the deadliest attack on U.S. soil since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington, D.C.

      These are the 10 deadliest mass shootings in modern U.S. history:

      1. Las Vegas: Oct. 1, 2017.
      58 killed and more than 515 wounded.
      Shooter: 64-year-old Stephen Paddock.

      2. Orlando, Fla.: June 12, 2016.
      49 people killed and more than 58 wounded.
      Shooter: 29-year-old Omar Mateen.

      3. Blacksburg, Va.: April 16, 2007.
      33 killed (including the shooter) and 17 wounded on the campus of Virginia Tech.
      Shooter: 23-year-old Seung-Hui Cho.

      4. Newtown, Conn.: Dec. 14, 2012.
      28 killed, including shooter and his mother along with 20 children aged 6 and 7, and 2 wounded at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
      Shooter: 20-year-old Adam Lanza.

      5. Sutherland Springs, Texas: Nov. 5, 2017
      26 killed, 20 injured in a massacre at the First Baptist Church in the small southern Texas town.
      Shooter: Devin Patrick Kelley

      6. Killeen, Texas: Oct. 16, 1991.
      24 killed (including shooter) and 27 wounded in a massacre at a Luby’s cafeteria.
      Shooter: 35-year-old George Hennard.

      7. San Ysidro, Calif.: July 19, 1984.
      22 killed (including shooter) and 19 wounded.
      Shooter: 41-year-old James Huberty.

      8. Austin, Texas: Aug. 1, 1966.
      18 killed (including shooter) and 31 wounded in what became known as the University of Texas tower shooting.
      Shooter: 25-year-old Charles Whitman.

      9. Edmond, Okla.: Aug. 20, 1986.
      15 killed (including shooter) and 6 wounded.
      Shooter: 44-year-old postal worker Patrick Sherill.

      10. San Bernardino, Calif.: Dec. 2, 2015.
      16 killed (including 2 shooters) and 24 wounded.
      Shooters: 28-year-old Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik, his wife.

      The problem is not mental health, nor is it the availability of firearms. It is the National Rifle Association’s influence on Congress and the state kegislatures.

      • Robert Teixeira

        I’m the dumb-ass? the NRA wanted a universal back round check years ago,
        there a federal law preventing domestic and violence offenders from getting a gun. It should be expanded to them losing them(that would put the cops in check from beat their spouses)When the government wants to take people guns away they will, I;m just point out the hypocrisy in the “fight” while each side turns a blind eye to their own hypocrisy while kids die in a fucking church, mind you. Let me know when you get the plank out that eye

        • The Bridgeport Kid

          You’re playing a bad hand. The National Rifle Association has fought every attempt at gun regulation at the state and federal levels. the NRA was able to bully Congress into allowing the gun show loophole. Donald Trump just signed a regulation that allows people suffering from mental illness to purchase firearms. The NRA had been lobbying to keep mental health records out of the license examination process. They got their wish because Donald Trump has no perception of reality. 

          Devin  Patrick Kelley, the Texas shooter, was able to purchase multiple firearms despite having served a year in the brig for domestic assault while a member of the U.S. Navy. He had civilian convictions for the same crime. The system failed: He was able to buy an AR-15 domestic assault rifle and the corresponding ammunition. You can put that one to bed. 

          Gun laws vary from state to state. Here in the northeast gun laws are restrictive, carrying severe penalties. That hasn’t kept guns off the streets of Bridgeport and Hartford, Connecticut; Springfield, Boston, New Bedford and Falls Village, Massachusetts; New York, New York; Providence, Rhode Island and other urban centers in the northeast. The street gangs send middlemen to North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, Arkansas, Georgia and other southern states with lax gun laws. The middlemen purchase firearms, come home and resell them at a hefty markup. 

          Regulation of firearms is a complex issue, complicated by the NRA’s well funded lobbying efforts. The association would have us believe the right to bear arms is God given. The United States Constitution  was drafted in the late eighteenth century when America was at war. An armed citizenry was necessary to repel the British. Times have changed. Too many innocent people are dying from the spasms of gun violence. After Newtown many thought Congress would finally act to restrict access to fireatms and ban assault weapons (the majority of mass shootings were committed with an AR-15, the semiautomatic domestic version of a military assault rifle).  But nooooooooo, the NRA huffed snd puffed and blew that one away. This Congress, with a Republican majority, is the most ineffective in the history of the United States of America. In the wake  majority of voters have demanded tougher gun laws. Congress has been gracious offer “thoughts and prayers” to the victims of gun violence, and mothing more.

  • The Bridgeport Kid

    64-year-old Stephen Paddock took a stash of weapons and electronic surveillance gear to Las Vegas, Nevada, and  murdered 58 and injured 515 others, many seriously. He took the coward’s way out, offing himself as law enforcement officers moved in. 

    Omar Mateen visited the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, 6/12/16, armed with an AR-15. He murdered 49, wounded 58 others. He had been radicalized by Islamic extremist websites. He was also homophobic. 

    On December 14, 2012 Adam Lanza woke up, showered, ate breakfast and killed his mother while she slept. He then went to Sandy Hook Elementary School armed with an AR-15 assault rifle.  He killed 26 including 20 children. The youngest was two years old. He ate his gun as the police arrived. 

    And then there was Devin Patrick Kelley. On November 5th he went to First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, armed with an AR-15 assault rifle. He opened fire, killing 26 and injuring 20. 

    After the shooting in Texas Donald Trump and other elected officials in Washington DC offered “thoughts and prayers.” It pains to state the obvious: THEY WERE IN A CHURCH, PRAYING. We don’t need “thoughts and prayers” or flowers or mylar balloons or any of that shit. We the people, in pursuit of a more perfect union, DEMAND federal legislators stand up to the National Rifle Association. The Second Amendment was written at the end of the eighteenth century. Times have changed. Accept it, deal with it, move on. 

    Public safety has been taking the back seat to the Second Amendment for too long. 

    • Robert Teixeira

      PS don’t worry the Government will take away their guns just like they took away their African and Irish Slaves. When “We the people, in pursuit of a more perfect union” DEMAND The republican had 50 plus vote to repeal Obama Care in 7 year. How many bill did the Democrats put up and had a vote on? Let me know when you get that plank out or is it already out and you just have it closed?

      • The Bridgeport Kid

        You are beyond obtuse, Robert. You are plain stupid. You argue for the sake arguing. That’s just stupid. You are unwilling or incapable of seeing the Big Picture. You didn’t respond to anything I have to say other than some off-the-reservation drivel about slaves and the GOP-dominated Hoise of Representatives voting eight million times to repeal ACA. Neither if those subjects are rekevent to gun control.

        • Robert Teixeira

          So much for the big picture I guess. You keep that plank in your eye. Most likely you turn that eye. How can you say the GOP placing bill after bill up for a vote to repeal ACA is irrelevant on one hand, and say we need gun legislation on the other? If the GOP can bring bill after bill for something that they believe in, like repealing ACA, why can’t the Democrats bring bill after bill for a universal back-round check or closing gun show lope holes and other common sense gun laws? All the Dems have to do is what the GOP did on the ACA repeal. #jimhimsesoundofsilence.
          This is what we (Democrats) want, let’s vote on it, again, again, again. The NRA can’t stop them from trying to bring a gun bill up for a vote, can they? Are you going to blame the NRA for the Dems lack of trying too?

          You summed it up perfectly when you said I’m playing a bad hand. I’m not on a side, and you failed to call out your own hand (side) you’re playing. To blame the NRA for the Dems lack of gun bills brought up for a vote is like blaming poor whites living in a trailer who are on welfare for poor blacks living in projects who are on welfare, who probably own his own home. (SMH That’s about a racist as one can get) The NRA has 5 million members with revenue of roughly 500 million. The last Star Wars makes 4 times the amount. The budget alone for the movie was more than half of the NAR’s yearly revenue. I can only assume you are black trying to talk to a black racist is like talking to white racist. You get nowhere. I know you are a craze liberal supporter and talking to a craze liberal supporter is like taking to a craze Trump supporter You get nowhere. #eslclassisout BAM I’m out

          • The Bridgeport Kid

            The Democrats HAVE advanced gun control legislation to the House floor only to be outvoted by the GOP Representatives coopted by the NRA. Face it, Robert, you are completely ignorant of the kegislative orocess in America.

            This thread is about guns and mass murder, not the GOP’s smoke-and-mirrors efforts to repeal ACA. Donald Trump cmpaigned on repealing and replacing ACA. As nany of his supporters in the rust belt (Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania) have health care benefits courtesy of ACA many of them are wuestioning Trump’s motives. If had succeeded in reoealing Obmacare many of them would have been left high and dry.

            At this point health care is a basic right, not a privilege. You have it ll wrong.

          • The Bridgeport Kid

            Don’t make assumptions, Robert. When you assume you make and ass out if yourself. I am a white working-class liberal eith a college education, your worst fucking nightmare.

          • Robert Teixeira

            They, Dems only bring a bill on guns after a mass shooting for their base to lack like they care. I believe I called you a white racist. That, you’ll make an ass out of yourself was original. I
            I was hoping you were black because at least blacks have a valid point on being kept poor by the “MAN” Clarify me if i’m wrong. I don’t want to assume anything. An educated white men is blames poor whites living in a trailer who are on welfare for poor blacks living in projects being on welfare and keep down by the Man? Things that make you go WTF. You are your own worst nightmare. I You people do know we have a presidential election every four years right? and election like every year. In fact we are having one today. Said Good day. SHM https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQAMemu6fEg

  • Jeff Kohut

    Just to add to the dialogue concerning gun regulation: One has to ask, among many questions concerning the regulation of the ownership of firearms; Is someone mentally balanced and rational when they perceive the need — in the United States of America — to own semi-automatic weapons with large-capacity magazines (or devices enabling automatic capacity)?

    Does a “normal”, mentally-balanced, rational person perceive our country and its government (or even their own little microcosm/milieu) as such a dangerous place that they need to possess semi-automatic weapons — and large caches of ammunition?

    If, indeed, those persons perceiving a need/reasons to possess semi-automatic weapons could “pass” a mental health examination that seeks to identify mental illnesses and impulse-control issues, what does their need to possess these weapons imply about their lifestyle and its compatibility with our society’s laws and mores?

    It seems that in all cases of note of crimes/atrocities perpetrated by the use of semi-automatic/automatic weapons, the persons involved were found to have mental health and/or criminal issues even to the extent (in both contexts) of seeking to commit seditious acts against our country…

    Indeed, it would seem that, generally, there is a very significant likelihood that there are known mental-health/substance abuse/criminal behavior issues associated with semi-automatic weapons ownership — especially where there is ownership of multiple weapons of this description… Even if the percentage of mentally compromised/criminal/seditious persons owning semi-automatic/automatic weapons is just 10%, that number of persons represents an “army” of persons among us placing us all at high risk of intentional harm of an unpredictable, random nature… This is clearly a reason for, at the very least, criminal and mental health background checks on all persons known to possess or seeking to possess semi-automatic weapons… Law-abiding, peaceful, mentally-stable, patriotic citizens surely wouldn’t object to laws mandating such background checks for the public good… People with nothing to hide have nothing to fear from such laws… And, indeed, benign people with benign lifestyles probably don’t perceive any need to own semi-automatic weapons… (How many 30-round clips does a hunter need to empty to assure a kill of the game that he stalks? How many 30-round clips does a home-owner need to empty at an intruder?)

    Especially in regard to semi-automatic weapons, there is no rational argument that can be made against background checks for ownership (per any history of mental-health, criminal, domestic violence, or seditious activity history), as well as permanent confiscation from owners involved in such situations after the fact…

    And certainly, the number of such weapons that any one person can own should be limited, as well as the magazine capacity and capability for conversion to full automatic capacity…

    Benign, “normal”/stable citizens wouldn’t seek to possess the capacity to kill multiple persons or other living creatures per the possession of such weapons — especially multiples of such weapons… (The exception to this rule would be police officers/retired police officers and other public-servants/law-enforcement officials who might be subject to threats of violence/violent retaliation related to their positions… And these persons certainly wouldn’t need more than two such weapons — per a fail-safe mechanism…)

    Yes; our president is correct; mental health issues are at the heart of all mass-killings — and, indeed, it is highly-likely that a very significant percentage of persons seeking to own weapons capable of the infliction of rapid, mass-killings are of questionable mental health status/stability and/or questionable criminal motivation… These situations require much-more stringent laws concerning gun-ownership criteria/gun-ownership limitation, and general gun availability…

    Freedom cannot exist in the absence of common-sense laws that limit our ability to intentionally harm numbers of our fellow citizens. There are no valid arguments against common-sense gun-ownership regulation in the United States of America…

  • Stringfellow

    Before Charles Whitman went on his killing spree in 1966 he went to a doctor and told him he thought the tower in Austin Texas would be a great place to shoot people from. The doctor did nothing and on August 1st 1966 Charles Whitman did the first school shooting in the US after killing his mother and his wife. The autopsy revealed a brain tumor. Whitman asked for help but did not get it.

    Fast forward, has any other mass shooter sought help before the killing started? We’re there signs?

    Those who kill because of hate or religion kill because of an ideology. I have no objection to guns I do object guns in the wrong hands and with mass shooters that is what you have. We don’t know who these people are before they strike so predicting the next one is all but impossible. You do not know where the next drunk driver is either until he/she causes an accident or worse.

    Devin Kelly went looking for him mother-in-law who knows why but clearly he was not in a right state of mind. The Air Force did not reveal a piece of information that would have stopped him from LEGALLY buying a gun. If he was determined to buy a gun he would have found a way ask any criminal that did.

    Even a mental health screening prior to obtaining a carry permit or buying a long gun would do little to stop the next mass shooting. There are too many guns out there and you just do not know who is going to go off next.

    You next mass shooter could be a dues paying NRA member with a gun permit. The next mass shooting could be at a work place, a mall, or a car wash. This person could be upset that their car was not cleaned properly we just don’t know. The next mass killing could be over a difference of opinion.

    You have to be pretty sick to wake up one day and decide to kill a bunch of people who have done nothing to you. We just do not know we do not know where the next one is going to be these people do not glow in the dark.

    Each state has it own rules on the purchase of guns but it does not seem to matter criminals do not care about rules. What happens when it’s the legal gun owner goes off? People will ask why did he have all those guns? The reasons behind the Vegas shooting is still unknown and perhaps a reason will never reveal itself.

    I agree that something must be done about guns but that something must be reasonable. A gun maker is not responsible for the use of its product you can’t blame Colt no more than you can blame Anheuser Busch if their product is used improperly. Don’t blame the car maker for the actions of the driver. Put the blame where it belongs sadly most mass shooters die after their carnage so what’s left to do?

    This guy Saipov used a rented Home Depot truck to run down and kill eight and injuring eleven. He did this in the name of ISIS and he bragged about it. What’s next a law suit against Home Depot for failure to perceive what this guy was going to do with their vehicle? You know there is a lawyer out there who is going to try, there is always the next test case.

    From a common sense stand point I am not sure if anything can be done to prevent the mass shooting or next multiple killing. The next killer might go off on a train platform with a Samurai sword hidden under his coat.

    Mental health is at the root of most of the carnage but there are those who kill because of an ideology no law new or old is going to stop them.

    • The Bridgeport Kid

      Mental health is stigmatized in the U.S. Trump tried to shift blame from the NRA to “those people,” the mentally ill. This is a complex issue, gun control. The Second Amendment was drafted at a time when a well armed citizenry was necessary for national security.

      The National Rifle Association was founded to promote firearms safety. Somewhere along the way from then ’til now the organization’s goal shifted to promoting the most conservative interpretation of the Second Amendment, as if gun ownership is a God given right. Show me a passage in the Old Testament that reads “On the eighth day God created automatic weapons and yea it was good…”

    • The Bridgeport Kid

      A few years ago I worked for a guy invested in a nightclub on West Park Place in downtown Stamford, Tino’s Place. He would rent it out to club promoters that plied tons of booze to every wannabe gang banger in Fairfield County, Westchester and the Outer boroughs.. On night after closing in June 2014 there was a street brawl on West Park Place among the severely intoxicated macho men (over a woman from what I was told). A passerby was punched in the face. He drew a pistol and started shooting, injuring 10. He was arrested, charged and convicted. It came out that he had just recieved a state oermit to carry a consealed firearm. (The club lost its liquor license, by the way.)

  • Donald Day

    In United States v. Cruikshank (1876), the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that, “The right to bear arms is not granted by the Constitution; neither is it in any manner dependent upon that instrument for its existence” and limited the applicability of the Second Amendment to the federal government.

    Our legislature’s like Jim Himes and 45 want to blame mentally ill people for these incidents while letting the proliferation of guns and the fact that any Damn fool with money can buy one off the hook.
    In 2010, 15,576 children and teenagers were injured by firearms — three times more than the number of U.S. soldiers injured in the war in Afghanistan. Nationally, guns still kill twice as many children and young people than cancer, five times as many than heart disease and 15 times more than infection, according to the New England Journal of Medicine. When is enough, enough?

  • Robert Teixeira

    TBK can you believe my Liberal teacher at NCC kicked my out of class for this assignment? https://www.facebook.com/notes/robert-teixeira/life/10154651771761341/

  • Robert Teixeira

    PS I don’t want to tell you what the “MAN” did when I tried to go back to school after my livelihood was taken. If I has a trailer or a project I’ll have a roof over my head. Enjoy you latta. Bam I’m out Good day people. :) OIB thanks for the ESL lessons. :)

    • The Bridgeport Kid

      Like I said, you were kicked out of class for being an asshole. If security wouldn’t allow you to re-enter the building that confirms you are an asshole.

  • The Bridgeport Kid

    When a shooter is black the GOP reacts with “We need to stop and frisk!”

    When the shooter is Latino the GOP says “We need to build a wall!”

    When the shooter is Muslim the GOP shouts “We need extreme vetting!”

    When the shooter is white the GOP offers “thoughts and prayers.”

    What’s wrong with this?

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