“This is all too familiar,” Cliff Schecter writes at thedailybeast.com. “A young aggrieved male, mentally disturbed, threatening others—especially women—but still able to get his hands on a high-capacity magazine of the variety used in so many other mass murders. This doesn’t happen in any other high income country with the regularity it does here; in fact, it almost never happens in any of them.” And it didn’t happen here, either . . .
All the ammunition magazines Elliot Rodgers used in the ballistic portion of his attack were California-legal 10-round mages. As for other “high-income countries” spree killings, Anders Breivik killed 69 people in Norway 2011. Facts. Who needs ’em? Not Schecter.
I already hear the outrage from the right: how can you blame the NRA? We need good guys to have guns, we have to stop the “haters” and “knockout gamers” and … I can’t even bear to repeat the infantile and inane talking points coming from cynical and callous people like the NRA’s Executive Vice President and foaming mouthpiece Wayne LaPierre.
We know how to stop these incidents, or at least greatly reduce them. We’ve seen other countries do it, such as Australia, which was averaging one of these massacres a year until their infamous Port Arthur Massacre in 1996. After which they completely overhauled their gun laws. Since then, a country with the same frontier history as the United States has not experienced one mass shooting. Not one. Their homicides and suicides have also precipitously dropped.
Right. Australia’s draconian gun laws stopped spree killing. Nothing to do with culture, mental health treatment or just plain luck. It was the country’s decision to outlaw guns that denied crazies the means to go postal. Oh look! news.com.au reports that gun ownership in Australia is back at pre-Port Arthur massacre levels. Huh.
The Down Under news org also reports that “in the seven years from 2005 to 2012, gun murders across Australia almost doubled. The incidence of guns used in kidnappings trebled. The total number of crimes in which a firearm was used rose from 823 in 2005, to 1217 in 2012, an increase of 47 per cent.”
We, of course, could learn even more about how to stop these mass killings, as well as the everyday homicides, suicides and accidental killings that rob this nation of our youth, and everything they could have ever been. But this past week we’ve had numerous examples of how the NRA does their best to block [government-funded anti-gun studies] from happening, because they will gladly accept mass murder in Santa Barbara and Newtown, as well as an accidental bystander shooting in a neighborhood near you, if it keeps the dollars floating into their pockets from the ultimate blood-drenched 1%ers who own various staples of the gun industry
Do I even have to say it? The NRA doesn’t “gladly accept mass murder.” And while it’s nice to see a shift from ad hominem attacks on gun owners as dumb, racist rednecks to “1%ers,” nonsense. As TTAG has proven time and time again, American gun owners come from all walks of life: rich, poor, black, white, Hispanic, Asian, gay, straight, etc. And I’m willing to bet more than a few progressives have gun company stocks in their portfolio.
It’s funny, really, how anti-gunners get things perfectly backwards. What’s not so funny: how their vilification of the NRA and law-abiding gun owners degrades support for Americans’ natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms.
Sadly for the NRA, we are in the Information Age, and the truth is starting to regularly get past their efforts to thwart it. But sadly for the rest of us—and at this moment, most tragically, the victims at Santa Barbara—the NRA have been so successful at bullying, threatening and obfuscating for so long, that we likely have too many more UC Santa Barbaras to come.
Gun control doesn’t save lives. It’s as simple as that. And demonizing the NRA doesn’t do a thing for public safety either. Quite the opposite, in fact.
Oh, and as far as “hiding information” is concerned, I wonder why The Daily Beast doesn’t inform readers that Mr. Schecter consults for Elliot Fineman’s National Gun Victims Action Council on the same page as the article. A group that somehow forgets to link to my debate with its leader on its web page. Facts. What’re you gonna do?