Adam Gopnik declares war on the Second Amendment . . . In the Wake of the Las Vegas Shooting, There Can Be No Truce with the Second Amendment
The facts remain facts. Gun control acts on gun violence the way antibiotics act on infections—imperfectly but with massive efficacy. Yet, even with that knowledge, some of us, in our innocence, proposed a sort of truce about Second Amendment issues in the face of the ongoing national emergency—the Trump Presidency—in which it seemed essential to make common cause, even with those who have the strange American fixation on the right to own military-style firearms.
They don’t have a reason for this fixation—no reason can be found. There’s no argument for it—such weapons are useless in sport, except for the sport of using them; they play no role in hunting, or not hunting anything except helpless people; and they protect no one from a tyrannical government, since the tyrannical government, if it would ever come to that, is hardly in need of small-arms fire to assert its will. Absent an argument for it, they merely have a fixation about it, but it remains practically religious in its intensity.
And the there’s the inescapable truth that . . . Stricter Gun Laws Would Not Have Prevented Las Vegas Shooting
When faced with senseless, horrific shootings, people in Washington and on cable news often end up politicizing them in order to argue over gun laws, especially if the location where the incident took place has relatively relaxed regulations. With this morning’s awful mass shooting in Las Vegas, we may not hear such talk, since the suspect, Stephen Paddock, allegedly used a fully automatic weapon, which is illegal no matter what, unless legally purchased and registered prior to May 19, 1986, when they were basically banned under federal law. Of course, it’s possible that he reconfigured a legal semi-automatic weapon to make it fire automatically but that would then make it an illegal weapon.
While it’s true that Nevada does allow people to legally carry firearms in public, only legal weapons are covered by this. Paddock would have broken the law before even pulling the trigger, since—assuming he hadn’t been holding onto this weapon for more than 30 years—the law forbids having the gun in the first place. Not only that, but the shooting took place at the Mandalay Bay, which has a strict no-weapons policy. Such policies technically don’t have the weight of law, meaning they can’t remove your weapon, but they can tell you to leave and have you arrested for trespass if you don’t.
You knew this would be coming . . . How the Las Vegas Shooting Challenges the NRA’s ‘Good Guy with a Gun’ Argument
If the carnage in Las Vegas ultimately alters the gun debate, it won’t be just because of the casualty count, staggering though it is. It will be because the circumstances of the shooting nullify the central, animating argument that the National Rifle Association has deployed throughout the numbing succession of public mass shootings — there have been 28 of them, by one count, since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012.
Per the NRA, the sole prescription for securing our country against mass shooters, terrorists, and evildoers is for Americans to arm up. “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun,” goes NRA leader Wayne LaPierre’s confident formula, “is a good guy with a gun.” The group has cited one form or another of this dictum as it has fought to ensure that federal and state laws present the lowest possible hurdles to civilian gun possession, while facilitating the carrying of guns in as many public place as possible.
From someone who’s been shot at from above . . . The Las Vegas Shooting and the Attack of the Carrion Crows
What I want to say is this: the carrion crows viewing this as a chance to advance their agenda, should get down on their knees and beg whatever God they believe in to forgive them and turn them into real humans, with real human feelings.
And that’s not counting the people saying it’s okay because those people were likely Trump Voters. Those people have willfully cut themselves from the human race and made themselves a species of hyena far more repulsive than real hyenas — who are after all only animals who can’t help their behavior.
It’s very early. We don’t know anything.
We do know that no gun control law ever kept guns from the hands of evildoers. Those laws do, often, take the means by which law-abiding people can defend themselves, even if that was impossible in this case.
What difference, at this point, does it make? . . . Is the Las Vegas Mass-Murderer a Terrorist?
In Las Vegas, more than 50 people are dead, and perhaps hundreds of others have been injured, in the deadliest mass-shooting attack in American history. Stephen Paddock, a 64-year-old Nevadan believed to be the lone gunman, fired upon attendees of the Route 91 Harvest music festival from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort across the street. He killed himself before police reached him.
As we begin to process what has happened, it is important to remember — as we have learned from too many of these incidents — that initial reports are often wrong. We must wait for investigators and responsible journalists to do their work before we can have a clear picture of what happened.
I’m sure we’ll find out soon . . . How Did the Las Vegas Gunman Get His Hands on a Weapon of War?
The incident in Las Vegas reveals the fallacy of the tired slogan, “Guns don’t kill, people do.” Yes, we need to address why so many Americans are attempting to kill a maximum of their fellows at random. At the same time, only a weapon designed for war could kill so many people from such a distance. High-capacity magazines capable of holding up to 100 rounds of ammunition only make that danger worse.
These weapons and magazines should never be in civilian hands and should be banned. Obviously, this is a tall order given the influence of the gun lobby on the Trump administration and majority party in Congress. But it’s not impossible. Existing weapons can be bought back from owners at a fair market price and destroyed. Australia melted down up to a third of its gun inventoryfollowing its deadliest-ever mass shooting in 1996, and has all but eliminated public mass shootings.
Re-thinking gun rights post-Mandalay Bay . . . Las Vegas survivor renounces stance on guns after shooting
Josh Abbott Band guitarist Caleb Keeter took to Twitter Monday to announce that he was no longer a guns right activist. His band performed at the Route 91 Harvest Festival on the Las Vegas strip Sunday night, when the concerts were cut short by a gunmen. Latest reports indicate that 58 people were killed and 515 were hurt.
The experience apparently forced Keeter to flip his stance on the 2nd Amendment.
“I’ve been a proponent of the 2nd Amendment my entire life,” he wrote in a statement posted on Twitter. “Until the events of last night. I cannot express how wrong I was. We actually have members of our crew with [license to carry], and legal firearms on the bus. They were useless.”
After a tragic event like this, we need to put politics aside and…do politics.
What could possibly go wrong? . . . Las Vegas shooting pushes Mark Zuckerberg to stake out even more political territory
As the fallout from the horrific shooting in Las Vegas continued to ripple around the country on Monday, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg issued a brief statement condemning the shooting and sharing, for him, a strong stance on another hot button political debate: gun control.
Because what we really need is advice on how to run a country from our friends across the Atlantic . . . Dear America: the Las Vegas shooting was not a tragedy. It’s a sickness
I’d have sympathy for the stampeding, terrified people who escaped if I didn’t know that one third of them have their own gun, that they live in a state where you do not need a permit to buy one, are not required to register it if you do, and assault rifles are not a big enough deal to require local legislation.
It would help too if their first, thick response to the biggest mass shooting in US history wasn’t “go grab a gun”.
I was sat here wondering how the shooter got his weapon and a bag of ammunition past the hotel staff until I realised Nevada allows “open carry”, and he could have cartwheeled through reception with an AK47 clenched between his teeth without anyone batting an eyelid.
How much longer are we going to put up with this?
How many more innocents have to die before we start standing up to the National Rifle Association? How many more concert-goers have to be massacred? How many more party-goers? How many more children? How many more kids on the street? How many more policemen?
The massacre in the Harvest Festival concert in Las Vegas is no isolated event. A staggering 30 Americans are murdered with guns every day.
Every. Single. Day.
That’s 11,000 a year. The equivalent of a 9/11 every 14 weeks.