Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Leaving Las Vegas

The Las Vegas Sun reports on a bizarre crime spree that miraculously resulted in only one death, the suicide of the perpetrator. The man was identified Tuesday afternoon as Jeffrey J. Hull, 42, of Las Vegas.

According to Metro Police, the acts committed by Hull, who drove a black Volkswagen Beetle, included attempted kidnapping, attempted robbery and discharging a firearm in public.

What began on Applecrest Street near Jones Boulevard and Rancho Drive — where the man is suspected of groping a woman — ended 17 miles south on Grand Canyon Avenue, where he crashed his car and shot himself as police approached the vehicle.

In between, police say the man tried to kidnap a 3-year-old girl — firing shots at her as she escaped with her mother — and also fired shots at a boy on a bicycle.

According to the police, this unusual crime spree was fuelled by alcohol and pills. I guess the death toll could easily have been much worse.

Metro said Hull was carrying two guns in his vehicle — one handgun and one rifle.

I know I've been presented with many convincing arguments about the benefits of gun ownership. But, what I keep wondering is what is the connection between that attitude and guys like poor Mr. Hull? Is there none? Is he a renegade criminal who wants to own guns and the others are law abiding citizens who want to own guns? Is that it, one has nothing to do with the other?

Why do these news stories, which, by the way, are much more frequent than the ones in which a good guy saves the day by being armed and intervening, why do these stories almost never mention the provenance of the weapons? It would be interesting to know if up until the incident in question, the guns were legally owned. Some of these guys, I suppose, were on the good team and something went wrong. Others, perhaps the majority, were criminals all along and procured the weapons illegally. I'm just guessing and theorizing because I don't think there are facts and statistics about all these questions. What do you think? What's your opinion?

I leave you with Nicholas. Do you think he's a great actor, by the way? Or is he just being himself?


  1. Wow, that video was annoying...

    The Big reason why Good-Guy gun stories don't make the paper is these stories aren't "Sexy" (to abuse a term) most of the time there are no shots fired, in those situations the attacker runs off and isn't caught...nor does he come back after police leave to try again. If the person is shot in defense there is that 20/20 hindsight (ie: "Was the attacker REALLY going to kill the defender, or would he have just taken the guy's money and run off?")

    Meanwhile a crime is a crime, often there is injury ("if it bleeds it leads" we've all heard that) almost always there is a rap sheet if the thug is aprihended, and the media, like you Mike, doesn't like guns, and they're happy to point out a person with a gun that shouldn't have one.

    Also there appears to be no media interest in shooting sports or public outreach (the only benifit shoot I've read about was that recent one where the kid died shooting the Uzi...again bleeds it leads, but no news shows up for my Club's fun-day/open house...or to a Women on Target shoot

    As for this story, there isn't much information to go on. Still I'm interested why you try to infer data from a case that police describe as "Bizzare".

    I mean if a homeless man was arrested walking down an airport runway with a store mannequin covered with Vaseline...that's a bizarre story...not a data point for the state of homeless, airports, or mannequins.

    How about your next post be a pro-gun one, Mike. You know where to look...or we can re-post them for you.

  2. Mike,

    Two points, a while back I challenged you to post a positive gun story for every negative one you posted. I repeat that challenge now. When you look for only the negative that is all you find and study, you don't see all the positive stories. Clayton Cramer runs a site called something like Civilian Self Defense, it lists daily successful defensive gun uses.

    Second, you mention two firearms and shots fired but don't even discuss the other lethal weapon that was used repeatedly. the evil Volkswagon beetle(EVB).

    The man was using pills and alcohol, do you really think he was fit to drive? Isn't a 2,000 pound car driven through traffic for 17 miles just as dangerous as a firearm?

    I'm going to quote you but change it very slightly, see how you feel about it.

    I know I've been presented with many convincing arguments about the benefits of car ownership. But, what I keep wondering is what is the connection between that attitude and guys like poor Mr. HullIs there none? Is he a renegade criminal who wants to own cars and the others are law abiding citizens who want to own cars? Is that it, one has nothing to do with the other??

    Does the legal ownership of our cars, YOUR CAR have anything to do with Mr. Hull's drunken drugged up drive?

    By the way, off topic and bragging but I may not be around much for the rest of the week. Going out to see my son graduate from Marine Corp boot camp. :)

  3. Safe Trip, Bob. And thank your son for his service for me. Take lots of pictures, and enjoy the weather. I hear God spoils those people from San Diego rotten.

    here's one of the best blogs for civlian self-defense news stories. that, Mike

  4. Bob, It's not a fair challenge. There are ten or twenty times more stories about wrongful shootings than the other kind. We can discuss why that is. Do you agree with Weer'd, is it simply because they make for better stories? I'm starting to think it's because they happen ten or twenty times more often. Maybe that's why.

  5. 100% Bullshit Mike. Follow the links read the stories OPEN YOUR EYES.

    There is NOTHING (as in ZERO) that supports your argument, unless ignorance is an argument.

  6. mike, are you seriously proposing that the news media either actually do, or even would, report on anything whatsoever with either a frequency or a prominence in direct relation to how often such things occur in society?

    that notion does not even make any sense. the vast majority of things that happen, and which hence would have to get most commonly and prominently reported on, are not interesting.

    nobody wants to pay good money for a newspaper just to read about the commonplace and unremarkable; by necessity, the news reports on the unusual and strange, the frightening and pathos-drenched. if it bleeds it leads, but only because most of us never bleed! "man bites dog" makes the news. "dog bites man" doesn't, except if it's followed by " death", or if the "man" is a baby. but guess which kind of occurrence is the more common by far?


    Mike I was just watching this. Note that at 6mins remaining a woman calls in with a story where she was assaulted in a Woman's bathroom. he says some threatening things to her, she draws her piece and points it at the guy and he runs.

    Now note, I've never heard this story before, as far as I know it never made ANY news story...and also note that Bryan Miller is enugh of a dirtbag to call that woman a liar.

    Oh he also gets called on his lie of the United States having the highest violent crime rate in the "Developed World" (Obviously Most of Eastern Europe, Russia, the UK, and Mexico aren't "Developed" as they have much higher crime rates...oh and gun bans)

    I just skimmed the self defense blog, and the ENTIRE first page is all stories from THIS LAST WEEK!!! Defensive gun use happens are a far higher rate than even I can imagine.

    You just need to open your eyes to see you can't deny what you see.

  8. Mike,

    Take the challenge for 2 weeks. If after two weeks you honestly can't find a positive story for every negative wouldn't that prove your point?

    I believe that you are honest enough if you agree to try, you'll try to find a positive for every negative.

    Your response is the very reason for the challenge. I was like you, I didn't believe it happened as much as it does. But in all honesty, Defensive guns uses OUTNUMBER the crimes, just as the others pointed out most of them never get reported.

    It is a challenge to your bias and preconceptions....are you open minded enough to even try?

  9. Outnumber the crimes 10-to-one, I might add.

    This is the reason why the paid lobbyists get caught in such huge lies.

    They KNOW gun control doesn't work, and only makes crime worse.

    Its not about guns, nor has it ever been...its about control!

  10. Now listen, about that challenge, of course I could go to sites dedicated to defensive acts with firearms and find plenty. But, I'm talking about the mainstream media. I don't agree that they refuse to publish them because they're not "sexy" enough, because they are "sexy." You remember the PA grandma who held the burglar at gun point until the cops arrived. What could be better than that one. But it's a rare example. The question is why. I do agree that many incidents may take place with no notice, the ones for example where a would-be criminal is scared off and no damage is done. This doesn't get anyone's attention. But still, the numbers are in support of my argument. Sorry. Remember we're talking CNN, NY Times, Las Vegas Sun, LA Times, WaPo, Miami Herald. Are they all in a conspiracy against you gun guys?

  11. I replaced the video, by the way. Thanks Weer'd.

  12. What "Numbers Are in"? Care to link the numbers so I can have a look to see how they disprove reality?

    I personally think most print media IS Biased against guns, but honestly the argument against a conspiracy could be made...but not an argument against BIAS.

    Pick anything. Lindsey Lohan gets caught with some nose-candy, or Britney Spears does a little drunk driving it make NATIONAL news. But most drunk driving or drug offenses never make the LOCAL news.

    A fatal car accident occurs it will often make the local news...but a plane breaks its landing gear an belly lands with only minor injuries it make NATIONAL news. God forbid there's an Airline crash, it'll be on the national news for WEEKS.

    Going by your "Logic" Mike, more people die in Airline accidents than auto accidents, because the Airline accidents are more reported, and only household names commit drunk driving and drug offenses.

    The News Media's job is NOT to report stories that are New, or Relevant. They are entertainment, and their jobs are to sell news papers and advertisement spaces. If reading 20 pages of fender-benders, or women scaring off rapists with their guns...but no apprehension people will get bored and not buy the service.

    Now Paris Hilton (Who's famous for What, exactly?) has a sex we're selling news.

    Is Paris Hilton naked a relevant story to you, Mike? Is a spoiled rich kid engaging in promiscuous sex and illegal drug use news to you, Mike?

    It isn't to me, but it got LOTS of play in the media.

    Again have a look at this blog, and follow the links to the referenced News Papers.

    if "the numbers are in" then obviously these news papers are a conspiracy by inventing defensive gun use?

    I really don't understand what you're getting at Mike, except that maybe you're afraid to admit that you're all-wet on this issue, and our arguments are logical and rock-solid.

    On two final notes...also remember this story you picked up the police were quoted in saying: "Luckily for us, incidents such as this don't occur very often," and you described the story as "Bizarre".

    So you covered the story, but admit it isn't a commonality. Meanwhile we point out that defensive gun use IS a commonality and therefore ISN'T covered.

    How isn't that logical?

    Also thanks for Changing the video, this one is much better. Also I think Nick Cage is in fact a good actor...not a great one, but he has talent.

  13. Oh forgot the blog link AGAIN

    I'll keep posting it until you read it.

  14. When I clicked on that link I saw a very familiar web site, I guess from the last two or three times you asked me to look at it.

    But, the funniest think happened when I read the top story:

    Woman Shot After Being Mistaken For Intruder

    A Keithville woman is recovering from a gunshot wound after she was mistaken for an intruder at her home.

  15. What's really funny is that you obviously didn't read much beyond the first few lines (Read the whole first page Mike, it won't take much out of your day, and make note the Dates of the stories, they're just days apart!)

    If you had read just a few lines further you would have read this:

    Some may object to reporting accidental shootings on a self-defense blog. However, we try to show an accurate sampling of the self-defense shootings that occur on a regular basis across these United States, and the fact that we have seen less then a half-dozen in the past five years is very telling."

    So this blog actually does what you refuse to do, report BOTH sides.

    Oh and because you again dodged the bulk of my last post, I'll add a little insult to injury:,0,4515248.story

    "As his owner was signing up for an open mic showcase, a limelight-loving mutt climbed behind the wheel of a van and rolled it through the front window of a St. James coffee shop last night, police and the dog owner said."

    This just went across the national news wire while I was cooking breakfast. So a NATIONAL NEWS STORY about a dog crashing a car into a coffee shop....yet I can't recollect a national news story about a dog chasing squirrels, or licking his boy-bits.

    According to your "the numbers that support of your argument." Dogs spend more time driving than chasing rodents.

    Unless I'm missing something from your previous comment...

  16. Mike,

    I'll keep making the challenge that you not only find but post about the positive stories. You've done a few, I agree.

    But it is about shaping perspective and the news media is biased against firearms. I'll post some examples as I find them to show you...but some of the simplest ways to find the bias is to look for the positive stories & review them.

    I was struck by how consistently negative words were used to portray even positive uses of firearms. "Packing Heat" instead of carrying a firearm. My favorite "took the law into his own hands" when a store owner shoots or scares off a criminal....tell me isn't the store owner fully allowed to do exactly that but the media makes it seems as the store owner was in just as much wrong.

    The few positive stories get buried. Heck go back and look for coverage of the US Olympic shooting teams during the recent games.

    Right now, I think you are convinced that firearms should be banned or restricted greatly, thus all your stories reinforce that belief. I make the challenge because of all the times you ask if gun owners share responsibility for the criminals, if we do, don't we also share responsibility/credit when firearms are used right?


    Or that the USA DOMINATED in the World Action Pistol Championship!

    Hell how many people know that there are lots of people worldwide who make ALL their money from shooting....let alone shooting HANDGUNS.

    And not all these people are Men....or American

    I was watching a video with a bunch of guys on the Itallian IPSC team teaching various speed drills.

    Did you even know this stuff was going on in your nation, Mike?

    Also have you noticed that you've never answered Bob's or anybody else's questions pretaining knives and other tools misused for crime in the wrong hands.

    ....There's a reason for that, and not many people are comfortable figuring out why.

  18. I know Italy has a great sport shooting culture from the Olympics. They won some big medals the last two times.

    You said, "Also have you noticed that you've never answered Bob's or anybody else's questions pretaining knives and other tools misused for crime in the wrong hands.

    ....There's a reason for that, and not many people are comfortable figuring out why."

    Well, actually I've been thinking about that. I just don't know how to respond yet. My first reaction always is that it's like comparing apples to oranges, but you know how scrupulously fair and unbiased I always strive to be. I didn't want to jump to any wrong conclusions. More to follow.

  19. Thank you for both giving this side of the issue some deep thought...and for letting us know you're contemplating it.

    I look forward to your next post on the issue.


    Here's some more news. Sounds like the kid was Med-flighted out of there.

    As a knife owner don't you feel partially responsible for this?

    Why is this only being covered in local news, and not national news?...that had to have been VERY scary for the kids.