Garen Wintemute courtesy Wall Street Journal
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Garen Wintemute Gun-Violence Research Center in California Gun Control
courtesy and AP

UC Davis’s Dr. Garen Wintemute runs something called the Violence Prevention Research Center. Translation: he’s a hoplophobic grifter with a university sinecure who sucks up millions of dollars to keep his anti-gun rights operation going thanks to the largesse of like-minded individuals, foundations and, of course, California tax payers.

One of the groundbreaking conclusions the good doctor has come to after burning through stacks of that cash is that we can, in fact, do something about mass shootings. His oh-so-carefully analyzed and deeply innovative prescription: universal background checks and gun violence restraining orders.

But as the NRA-ILA notes, the consistency of Wintemute’s arguments is apparently the hobgoblin of a little mind.

Wintemute begins with a list of six mass shootings, the perpetrators of which all passed background checks. There were missed or ignored signs in some of these cases and evidence of systemic institutional failure in others – including opportunities to have the perpetrators involuntarily committed before their actions. Wintemute acknowledges his own research found “no evidence of an association between the repeal of comprehensive background check policies and firearm homicide and suicide rates in Indiana and Tennessee.” To be blunt, the comprehensive background check laws didn’t affect relevant homicides.

Details, details. A good civilian disarmament advocate would never let a little thing inconsistencies between his data and his conclusions get in the way.

His own research doesn’t stop Wintemute from pressing forward with his agenda. “But the findings do not support a conclusion that background-check requirements are fundamentally ineffective.” Try to reconcile that with the previously described findings. Wintemute seems to be really suggesting that we need better background checks – with more information shared to background check systems and clearer definitions of prohibited persons. This is different than “comprehensive background checks,” which generally require checks to be run even for transfers between friends or other private sales.

Much like the advocates of socialism who claim the system is totally awesome (it just hasn’t been implemented correctly anywhere yet), Wintemute seems to be saying that background checks really do work if you just do them the right way…his own evidence to the contrary.

We just need to supplement them with an additional government permission slip.

Later in his article, Wintemute moves the goalpost from “comprehensive background checks” to “permits to purchase,” which would require law-abiding citizens to get permission from the government before they were allowed to purchase a firearm. Wintemute claims “many studies have found permit-to-purchase laws to be effective” but the Rand Corporation determined that licensing and permitting requirements have uncertain effects on total homicides, firearms homicides, and mass shootings because the evidence is inconclusive.

Again, nothing but silly inconsequential details.

Contra-indications like that certainly won’t stop Dr. Wintemute from continuing to plug away, providing his constituency — the nation’s leading gun control organizations and the media (but we repeat ourselves) — with plenty of fodder to keep the civilian disarmament advocacy ball rolling forward.


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  1. The #1 rule of research is to do carefully designed experiments and then BELIEVE YOUR DATA!”

    I have been a science nerd since the 50s. I learned that rule before I left elementary school. How can anyone claim to be a scientist when they do not even know what science is?

    • Why would he? He’s not a scientist and has never been scientifically trained. He’s an M.D., who are jumped up technicians. He also has a master’s of public health degree (MPH). See:

      The MPH degree is defined as:

      “A Master of Public Health (MPH) degree is a graduate-level program that emphasizes the practical aspects of public health. This type of program is designed to prepare students for their role in promoting community awareness about injury, violence prevention, communicable diseases and other issues that affect health and safety. Since research is not usually a primary focus in most MPH programs, students desiring careers as professors or researchers of public health should pursue a Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH) degree.” See

      I have a number of M.D.s in my immediate family, and they are scientifically illiterate, at least from my point of view, as a person who holds a research Ph.D. in a branch of the biologically sciences.

  2. Ah yes, permission from the government to purchase. Gee whiz. That should be easy! lol … ‘the government’ which betrays the Constitution, which doesn’t want us to have guns. Permission granted? Only if you’re rich, a movie star, a celebrity of some sort (aka LeBron James), etc.

    • Maybe we should point out to him that he is advocating for the Trump administration, Republican Congress, and conservative Supreme Court to have a trilateral monopoly of force. He genuinely wants these entities to decide who should have the guns and who shouldn’t….. this man is a crazy red-state fascist /sarc/!!!

    • Maryland already requires separate permits for purchasing and carrying firearms. Permits to carry are notoriously difficult to get. Maryland also has an 8 day waiting period to receive a firearm after purchasing it so the State Police can perform their own, better backgroung check after the NICS check. Yet, Baltimore currently has the highest murder rate in the USA. Imagine how much worse it would be had they not rammed through the so called Gun Safety Act of 2013 despite overwhelming numbers of citizens showing up at the State House to testify against it.

  3. Take away all the guns in the universe and there will still be mass homicides. Arson, vehicular, machete, bomb, electrocution, structural collapse, road sabotage, poisoning, crossbow……..on ad infinitum. Where there’s a will, there’s always a way, of some sort. Clever new ways will pop up to meet the demand.

  4. Wintemute, doesn’t that name suggest his ancestors had the sense to STFU

  5. I have a great idea. Mass shootings are perpetrated by a tiny handful of psychotic individuals, right?

    Well, why don’t we just fix it by restricting/removing the civil rights of 330 million people who ARE NOT psycho and will never hurt anyone? I mean, it makes perfect sense. Right? Right?

    Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. It takes a deeply committed progressive leftist to be wrong all the time.

  6. “UC Davis’s Dr. Garen Wintemute”

    That speaks volumes,a professor from Leftard central.

    • Ask the good Dr. how he feels about the police pepper spraying the UC Davis protestors a few years back. How he feels about the students who were shot by government troops at Kent State. And, how he feels about the Trump presdency, Republican Congress, and conservative Supreme Court…. when he’s done spewing his vitriol, remind him that he wants those people to decide who can have guns and who can’t.

  7. Wintermute has, over and over, deployed every debunked metholdogy to twist statistics.,

    Imagine a person specializing in lung cancer epidemiology never mentioning or controlling for tobacco smokers, and simply in all their research and publications implying that lung cancer risks are the same for all people, smokers and non smokers. It is the same with firearms killings and prior criminality. A small minority of Americans are prior/current yet they are both over 90% of gun murderer perps and over 90% of gun murder victims. Yet Wintermute doesn’t even acknowledge the presence of that risk factor.

    As far as mass shootings, Wintermute cherry picks six out of hundreds. He picks only the ones that fit his existing thesis. This is the very definition of bad science. You use the entire set of data, or pick RANDOMLY from set. If Wintermute had done either his “findings” would have been reversed.

    The guy is literally a quack. If he was working in pathology, virology, cancer studies or any other form of epidemiology based work he would never get published. But any crank, especially those with subsidies from gun control lobby funders, gets funded and their nonsense blindly repeated by the press.

    • Bad science reigns in many fields; very much so in the fields that are participating in the attack on individual freedoms under the guise of public health or the greater good. Have you seen the epidemiology (safety)studies the pharmaceutical industry uses trying to support their “Vaccines are safe and effective” sales slogan?

  8. He/she/they look like the “person” that sat behind Feinstein at the confirmation hearings.
    Is it?

  9. I’d be interested to know Wintemute’s political leanings. We have seen empirical evidence of the compromised intellectual capabilities of Liberals.

    • Many liberals are very intelligent, but many grew up in a bubble and are very naive. They believe that people are inherently good, and can not see the forest for the trees. Realists, people that grew up with everyday people, know some of the things others can do. Society used to keep people in line. Shame, gossip, being held to account for your transgressions, used to keep people somewhat honest.
      Anything goes now. There is nothing to be ashamed about, except getting caught. Whole classes of people(of all races) being proud of living off the government, generations living on the dole, no respect for religion. Business owners that hire illegal aliens and do not pay into social security/unemployment insurance/disability/worker’s comp/group insurance.
      This is true of Dems and Republicans. The Soviet Union collapsed from the inside – corruption got the better of the government. No one believed in it anymore. It seems to be happening here in the U.S. I hope it can be turned around, but any government that keeps making “new” laws and regulations and not enforcing the old ones is doomed.

  10. This is the type of person/institution which people spend thousands of dollars in tuition to send their kids to be ‘educated’. Try and find a conservative on any school campus. They are as rare as hen’s teeth. Think our children will not be indoctrinated? It’s been going on for generations now and we are seeing the results. American values and way of life are being forgotten.

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