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As James Brown is wont to say, Papa’s got a brand new bag. Specifically, the gun control industry is taking a new tack in their never-ending battle to disarm Americans. I mean, prevent gun violence. Money. The lack of gun control costs money. We can’t afford NOT to have gun control. To wit: the Center for American Progress has totted-up the cost of Seung-Hui Cho’s killing spree. Click here for Auditing the Cost of the Virginia Tech Massacre; How Much We Pay When Killers Kill. Needless to say, the not-quite-right-thinking Center threw everything they could at the bottom line: the university’s legal bills (including a $55k fine under the Clery Act) and staffing costs, police costs, hospital bills, even autopsy receipts. Spock! Damage report . . .

In this report we share the findings of our survey of the monetary costs incurred as a result of this murderous rampage at Virginia Tech five years ago. This paper assesses this cost at $48.2 million for the taxpayers of the United States and the commonwealth of Virginia, and for Virginia Tech, a public university. This report also demonstrates how the background-check system, still rife with loopholes, failed to protect American citizens from an armed and dangerous Seung-Hui Cho, costing innocent lives—many of them young ones.

See what they did there? Gun control advocates just can’t bring themselves to ditch the entirely spurious argument that background checks could have prevented Cho from going postal. Check this:

Cho had a history of mental illness but was able to bypass the national gun purchase background check system and buy two weapons to accomplish his meticulously planned spree killing.

Cho did NOT bypass the FBI’s NICS system. He bought a gun through a gun dealer, who ran Cho through the system. Cho passed. And if he hadn’t, what are the odds he would have said “Fuck it. If I can’t buy a gun legally I’ll forget the whole thing and get some therapy. Maybe go to an anger management class.”

As Bruce Krafft would surely point out, what about the cost savings created by armed civilians? You know: crimes that weren’t committed or bad guys shot to death who would have otherwise sucked-up taxpayer money for their incarceration? What’s the Second Amendment’s monetary value?

Anyway, who cares about money? If arming Americans saves one life, it’s worth it.

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  1. This paper assesses this cost at $48.2 million

    So if good guy with a gun had shot that murdering scumbag dead asap, the defender would have saved the taxpayers over $48 mil. Seems like a good reason to carry, no?

    • Lemme see, here. Dead murderous sociopath, or 32 dead innocents. Hmm, carry the one…yup. Campus carry wins.

    • Using their logic, next time something like that is about to happen and a normal person shoots them before they can start killing people, they should calculate the cost in the same way, then the person who shot the would-be murder should get half of what that cost would have been.

      It’s a win all around – the person who did the right thing gets to retire early, the state / corporation pays half of what it would have it no one intervened, and there’s one less criminal in the world.

      • You mean the way a normal person stopped Loughner?

        You’re argument that gun free zones are shooting galleries for criminals and that armed citizens could prevent that is bogus. And what’s more, you know it is. Otherwise the upcoming NRA convention would be scarcely attended.

        • Remind me, oh wise one – how many mass shootings have taken place amongst a group of armed people?

          There’s a reason why your friends always go for areas where they know people will be unarmed.

          • It’s funny how you assign to the mentally ill spree killers great reason and the ability to plan, when it suits your argument. When you want to support that bogus nonsense about gun free zones you paint the lunatic shooters as reasonable, rational, clear-thinking individuals who calmly plan their every move.

            The truth is they’re pissed off maniacs incapable of that kind of circumspection.

            If you were to look at ALL the multiple killings, the hundreds upon hundreds that happen every year, and not just the two or three headline-grabbing stories we think of when we say “school shootings,” you’d be compelled to admit, I think even you would, that they’re not the thinking and planning individuals you said, and they don’t particularly seek out gun free zones.

            By the way, why aren’t you in St. Louis today? There’s probably going to be a mass shooting there any minute. Not that I’d like to see you involved as a victim, but if I remember correctly, you’re one of the guys who believes in “bad rules be damned.” You might be able to save the day.

            • Very few mass shooters are crazy. Are they mad at society? Yes, but they’re perfectly capable of making rational decisions. Just because they decide that the benefits of kill a particular group of people outweighs the costs doesn’t make them irrational – it merely means that they have a different set of priorities than you do.

              I bet you are creaming your pants at the thought of a bunch of people being killed in St. Louis – that’s what you enjoy, seeing innocent people dead or harmed. That’s why you’re so eager to make people defenseless, so that you can have more victims to giggle over.

              You’re a sociopath Mike, and one of these days you’ll stop being content with watching your precious outsiders harm innocent people and you’ll decide to do it yourself.

        • Hundreds upon hundreds, Mikey? In what world? You, sir, are a F%$#@ng idiot. Go back to your Play Dough., moron.

        • Oh, and this should make you soil yourself, Mikey: I just bought my 6 year old granddaughter a pretty, pink camo, 20 gauge pump gun. She attends a Christian school, where they say the Pledge of Allegiance, while holding Bibles, in front of a crucifix, and they thank the Good Lord for lunch to boot. And they allow parents to carry guns.

    • To say nothing of what one good Colorado citizen could have saved the taxpayers, minus the price of admission, of course. Should have had one of those “shoulder things that go up”.

  2. Things like that hurt my brain. I almost want to hand it over to the zombie apocalypse I wont be able to defend myself from if they ever get what they want. I understand that every argument has a view or objective, but can people really blind themselves to a point where they can’t see the holes in their own argument twice the size of a world class aircraft carrier?

    Understandably bad people will do bad things, but their is no telling when or where a person will go bad and how. Bad guys will find a way and they aren’t bound by our morals nor laws. It’s too obvious that the only way to make them think twice about doing something bad is by providing the good with training and tools.

    Sorry, I’m getting off topic… I agree that civilian sheepdogs save the government money and the 2nd amendment is still hanging in there to empower them to do so. Maybe it is time we give gun owners more freedom and flexibility to protect ourselves and each other from domestic threats. I’m not talking about everybody becoming vigilantes obviously, but in some writings I have tucked away the idea is that while the government protects us from outside threats, we can make things safer at home even for our own local law enforcement. Saves time, MONEY, and LIVES!!!!

    Who knows, maybe we’ll get lucky and we’ll be able to protect ourselves from zombies yet. I really hope those lawyers become zombies first, HAHA!

    • I said it before and I’ll say it again:
      There is no such thing as a civilian sheepdog. You’re a sheep with a gun.

      There are no such things as government sheepdogs. They’re wolves on leashes.

      It may give you a touch of tingle in your pink parts to romanticize things that way, I don’t know, but adopting that terminology and imagining yourself to be some sort of Societal Guardian is a dangerous mind game to play with yourself; to wit: George Zimmerman.

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  3. Amazing how in an eerie Orwellian design, anything with the word “progress” in it immediately is synonymous with anything anti-rational, anti-logic, anti-truth, and anti-American.

    Sad how a word that, at its root, is optimistic and hopeful can be turned into essentially a curse word.

  4. $48.2 million…

    Let me see…

    23,700 undergrads at Virginia tech…

    $ 23,534,100 – cost of supplying each and every one of those undergrads with a shiny new Sig P220 at $ 993 apiece.

    $ 450,300 – cost of giving them their first box of Golden Saber.

    $ 2,370,000 – cost of supplying a holster for each of those Sig P220s ($100 each).

    Total cost: $ 26,354,400. Total savings: $ 21,845,600. Of course, if you used a less expensive handgun (say, a Glock, M&P, or XDm), your savings would be much greater.

    Campus carry is clearly not going far enough in terms of fiscal responsibility. Clearly, the fiscally responsible thing is to immediately start issuing sidearms.

    • Of course, if you used a less expensive handgun (say, a Glock, M&P, or XDm), your savings would be much greater.

      It’s a concealed carry gun to be used in case of emergency – give them a Bersa for around $300. No one who’s shot a Bersa would argue against it for that purpose.

        • Yea, I’m wanting the Thunder 9 UC for when I get my CCW. I got my girlfriend a .380 Thunder and it’s a great gun.

    • Carlos, your post is made of equal parts win and epic. I’m copying and saving, if you don’t mind. Gonna pull this out next time my sister-in-law starts one of her “I don’t see why people need to carry guns” rants.

    • If you went with an XDm you’d get a holster. Plus if you’re buying in those quantities (Roughly 24,000) I bet you’d get some bulk pricing deals.

      With the leftover money you build a firing range and offer some training courses! Now that’d be higher education I could support!

  5. What is the national health care cost to provide medical care to smokers, drug users, alcoholics, bad drivers, obese people, and free birth control? If one or both parents cannot afford children then don’t force me to subsidize. Why should I be forced by law to support all those needs when it does not apply to my life? Socialism is legal theft.

  6. “If arming Americans saves one life, it’s worth it.”

    That is some powerful stuff, right there.

  7. Sounds like CAP is finding fault with the background checks. Notice how gun control measures are never enough? Whatever they claim as “common sense” restrictions, their goal is to totally disarm American citizens.

    • There ae plenty of faults with the background checks–including states that do not repot at all, or report only partial statistics. Now if you scroll down tho their recommendations, and aside from banning large capacity magazines, what is inherently wrong with requiring states to comply with the reporting requirements of the NICS system? Is the only rational argument that the costs of compliance far outweigh the risks associated with “legal” purchases of firearms by prohibited persons?

      There is a cost and a benefit to any measure intended to protect, and the question always becomes whether the costs exceed the benefit derived. Is the cost of effective NICS greater than the benefit of transactions disallowed, or does the fact that illegal firearms are available suggest that no cost incurred will result in any real benefit?

  8. Interesting they now put fiscal responsibility ahead or moral responsibility. Quite the flip-flop. But with them it’s whatever works at the moment.

  9. Robert, it’s good what you pointed out about Cho not bypassing the background check system, nevertheless, the benefit of background checks that work is paramount. Your point that if he’d been blocked he probably would have looked for a gun elsewhere is probably right, but that’s no reason to make it easy for guys like him.

  10. A common mistake that almost everyone makes when calculating the “cost” of something they are against is to take the manhours spent and multiply by salary earned and add it in to the overall figure. The error here is that the medical examiner, the police officers and detectives involved, court personnel, the lab techs, etc would have ALL been collecting paychecks anyway. I can see justifying any overtime needed that was above regular salary paid, but that wouldn’t generate the BIG NUMBER that they are looking for.

  11. Anti-gunners like Mikey only focus on murder and not the overall crime rate. If we have gun controls like the UK or Chicago we will have crime rates like the UK or Chicago. The cost of the doubled or tripled rape, assault and robbery rates far exceeds the cost attributable to shooting deaths.

    • Rapes have much less to do with guns than homicides do. That’s the reason to focus on a crime which is done 65% of the time with a gun.

      Face it, the statistical fact, which as you know I don’t usually resort to, of the difference between the US and the UK regarding intentional homicides is a damning blow to your argument. Read it and weep, if you already have, read it again.

      • Mike,

        From the source of your link, Austria has an intentional homicide rate of 0.56, which is less than half of the UK. However, Austria has more liberal gun ownership laws than the UK:

        As a result, gun availability is probably not the cause for the difference. It’s more likely due to a direct correlation between population density and violent behavior. Cultures that developed on islands (UK and Japan, for example) tend to develop a strict code of etiquette since people have to deal with close neighbors. The US never really developed a code of etiquette, and the violence statistics from the US are centralized around dense population areas.

        In summary, the people need space or a structure to deal with a lack of space. The countries that have a lower intentional homicide rate are the older countries which had time to develop a code of etiquette, regardless of gun laws.

        • Hey, you’re the guys who keep bringing up the UK as an example of draconian gun laws and how they don’t work. Those stats about intentional homicide prove they do work.

          Not only do they work for reducing murders, which are largely committed with guns, but no government tyranny has been reported, no deportation of dissidents to camps, nothing.

          • Well mikey are you going to keep igonring the demography of American crime and violence? Are you going to continue to deny how violent UK society is?

          • Mike,

            It’s conceited to think that anyone who argues with you is pro-gun–I consider myself neutral, and I’m only here because campus safety is a big concern of mine. Regardless, the biggest difference between you and me is that you blame guns for violent crimes, and I’m open to other causes (poverty, overpopulation, culture, etc.).

            It’s ignorant to believe that you are correct in your interpretation of the intentional homicide statistics. The wikipedia source for your link (, you show two countries:

            United States 4.8
            UK 1.23

            From the same source, I added the intentional homicide number for another country:

            Austria 0.56

            I also provided a link showing that Austria has less draconian gun laws than the UK, but you ignore Austria in you conclusion. By ignoring data from your own source, your conclusions look deceptive.

            It’s naive of you to believe that countries with strict gun laws are immune to becoming tyrannical. Being Vietnamese, I can tell you that within a year of the US pullout, 600,000 South Vietnamese people were put into “Re-education Camps”. Since the North Viet Nam government controlled the media no one outside of Viet Nam knew about it.

            I’m not telling you to stop being anti-gun, but I believe you will get more traction if you were more SPCA-like in your arguments and less PETA-like. At the very least, I hope that you consider that violence is bigger than gun ownership.

            • “the biggest difference between you and me is that you blame guns for violent crimes, and I’m open to other causes (poverty, overpopulation, culture, etc.).”

              Actually we may be much closer than you think. I don’t blame the gun. The gun is an inanimate object like a toaster or a tire iron. Only a fool would blame an inanimate object for anything.

              What I do say is gun availability to the unfit and dangerous guys is ONE of the factors in violence. You named a few of the others. I agree totally. But here’s the thing. We’re already trying to do something about poor education, poverty, overpopulation, however poorly, but we are. We’re not doing enough about the gun availability. The result is, whether you want to admit it or not, the US has the worst record of all the developed countries.

      • This is what I mean by hit and run. I explained in the flame Mikey thread, backed by statistics, the reason for our high murder rate. It is because large segments of the American urban landscape are ungoverned areas controlled by warlords (gang leaders) working with the political establishment. The rest of the country is pretty much like Europe when it comes to murder. You avoided addressing this fact before and you will continue to do so.

        Many assaults and rapes in the UK take place during home invasions. In the US burglars generally stay out of occupied homes out of fear of getting shot. Virtually all US home invasions are criminals ripping off or settling scores with other criminals, Not so in the UK. Not only is their rate of hot burglaries higher than ours but hey have more of them per 100,000 residents. All my UK friends tell me that you don’t get a security system in London because the thugs know when are home. The lack of firearms plus the draconian penalties for self defense make the UK one of the most dangerous places in the developed world to live. The US cities that have the most draconian firearms laws are also the cities with the highest crime rates. So as usual you are full of it.

        Michael Bonomo: A man who would have 1000 women raped then have one rapist killed by a DGU.

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