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OK, not completely non-existent. ‘Cause then Ohio’s wouldn’t have an appropriately heart-rending anecdote upon which to peg their exploration of the tragedy of kids and guns. That said, it seems that staff writers Andy Sedlak and Kareem Elgazzar couldn’t find the kind of “if only we’d had gun control” tear-jerker upon which gun grabbers regularly rely. “Lt. Walter Scott Reeve had only been on the Middletown police force about two years when he responded to the scene of a wounded 10-year-old girl — shot by a 10-year-old boy — on an August night in 1988. Upon arrival, Reeve found the girl laying in the yard, her shirt soaked with blood. The boy told police he had been showing her his father’s gun when it accidently [sic] went off . . .

Police later found out the boy pulled the gun out of the holster, pointed at the girl and pulled the trigger. The girl later died.

While gun control advocates can bleat on about unauthorized access to firearms, operating on the basic principle that more guns means more “bad things will happen,” this second-hand story of a deeply disturbed pre-teen doesn’t exactly shout “Cincinnati, we have a gun violence problem.”

Statistically speaking, they don’t. And where do we turn for proof that you can round the incidence of teenage gun violence down to zero? Why, of course.

Between 1993 and 2009, the percentage of students who reported carrying a weapon at least one day anywhere during the past 30 days declined from 22 percent to 17, and the percentage who reported carrying a weapon at least one day on school property also declined, from 12 percent to 6, according to the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics.

You do realize that “a weapon” in this study includes knives, right? Just checking.

In Hamilton, there were 24 incidents involving firearms and young people less than 20 years old in 2009 and 2010, according to police reports analyzed by the JournalNews.

An “incident involving firearms” doesn’t necessarily mean an assault of any kind, K? Cool.

In addition, there were eight incidents of juveniles charged with carrying a concealed weapon, which may include firearms and knives, over the same time period.

A review of 60 Middletown police reports involving a gun since July 1 showed no situations where the weapon handler was a juvenile.

“It’s not very common at all,” Reeve said. “It’s an unusual person to actually use a gun on someone else.”

Nothing to see here folks. Moving on . . . oh wait. We can’t do that. Where’s the shock? Where’s the outrage? WHERE’S THE TAXPAYER-FUNDED ANTI-GUN VIOLENCE PROGRAM? Let’s try that again, doubling up on the negatives to create some positively misleading “evidence.”

That’s not to say there is no issue. Of the seven alleged members of the Baltimore Street Gang recently indicted by a Butler County grand jury for participation in a criminal gang, four of them had prior gun-related offenses, according to Middletown police Major Rodney Muterspaw.

Many of those indicted were in their early 20s.

Early twenties you say? By my calculations, that would make them . . . adults. Anyway, a handful of gun-toting twenty-somethings is enough to trigger the usual political sanctimony, complete with crocodile tears and blame it on the gun hand-wringing.

Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory [above] said the use of firearms among young, untrained people should open the eyes of every adult.

“An incident of that type could have happened anywhere — all of us have to do a better job of making sure young people aren’t walking around with firearms,” Mallory said.

Newly hired Cincinnati police Chief James Craig, who hasn’t even completed his first month of service, echoed many of Mallory’s sentiments at an NAACP meeting on Thursday.

“Where’s the reverence for life?” Craig said. “A lot of these young people don’t have hope — we are all in this together.

“And it’s not just the police, it’s not just the NAACP, it’s the West Side and the East Side, we are all in this together.”

More’s the pity.

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  1. “Where’s the reverence for life?” Craig said.

    The city fathers might consider this research by Stanford Medical. Also consider implementing the Take the Challenge school curriculum which claims to reduce aggression and negative classroom behavior by significant percentages.

    Are they prepared for large scale threats? In a recent lecture presentation Lt. Col. Dave Grossman noted that the emergence of atrocities like the Columbine massacre are unprecedented in recorded history. Why is this?

    “A lot of these young people don’t have hope — we are all in this together.

    There has been an abundance of despair throughout history. Arguably the emergence in recent decades of violent video games like Grand Theft Auto and worse, ever more movie and TV violence, etc. plays a part. Violent visual imagery inflicted on children is not healthy.

    all of us have to do a better job of making sure young people aren’t walking around with firearms,” Mallory said.

    Should another school shooting ever occur (and there have been at least five so far this year), could you defend leaving the schools unprotected and instead hide behind blaming it all on firearms?

    While this may make the gun grabbers’ heads explode there are beginning to be school districts that allow their licensed CCW holding teachers to be armed in school. Search the www for “Harold TX” which may have been the first. The U of Utah and apparently also some K-12 schools in Utah have followed suit.

    Better to deter than just to deny the problem.

  2. Ok, I’m from Cincy and that place doesn’t need guns to be a cesspool. It was pretty bad around the UC campus area (Cliffton) when I was in college ten years ago, but it has just gone down hill. My little brother was stabbed 4 times up there with a grill fork – yes, a GRILL FORK. This was in the front yard of a house in a crowd by a totally random person walking passed the party. No robbery or anything, just ran up, stabbed, and ran away. People don’t need guns to be screwed up, they just need to go to Home Depot.

  3. “Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory [above] said the use of firearms among young, untrained people should open the eyes of every adult.¨

    The obvious answer is to teach gun safety in school. I don´t mean ¨if you see a gun dont touch it and tell an adult.¨ I mean hammering in the safety rules, teaching how to check if a firearm is loaded, wearing your ears and eyes when shooting, ect.

    • That would make sense, but then again this is a city that once voted Jerry Springer into office…so things that make sense don’t fly in the ‘Nati.

  4. I was trained to use a machine gun and a pistol at the age of 17. US Government required me to be proficient using both. The irony is I wasn’t old enough to buy either but, hey, whatever the man wants.

  5. My fingernail clipper was considered a “weapon” at the city courthouse several years ago. I know it’s a weapon because they confiscated it. Gotta be careful of drive-by manicures.


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