When we discussed the Pittsburgh shooter, Richard Poplawski, who killed three policemen using his personal arsenal including at least one AK-47, we didn't know much of the background that has come out now.
He wasn't your run-of-the-mill malcontent. A white supremacist, he frequented the chat rooms of racist Web sites, where he posted screeds about a "Zionist occupation" bringing the country to economic ruin. But Keith Savage, manager of the Braverman Arms Co., where Poplawski got many of his guns (but not the AK-47, Savage claims), says nothing seemed amiss when he filled out Form 4473—the standard questionnaire for federally required background checks. The gun-shop staff had no way of knowing, for instance, about Poplawski's January 2005 discharge from the Marines for what Lt. Josh Diddams, a U.S. Marine Corps spokesman, tells NEWSWEEK was a "psychological disorder" (he had assaulted his drill sergeant during basic training, says Poplawski's mother). They probably also didn't know that Poplawski's former girlfriend had gotten a restraining order against him, later in 2005, after he grabbed her by the hair and threatened to kill her.
Any ex-marines reading this might agree with me that not only is assaulting the drill instructor during boot camp extremely rare, it's one of the greatest indicators of mental illness I've ever heard of. But, the real question is what does this say about the supposed background checks that are being done? If a psychological discharge from the service and the assault charges that led to it didn't raise the red flag, shouldn't the civilian assault on the girlfriend have done so? Where exactly is the background check system failing?
The thrust of the article is the White House's silence on the problem. It seems reinstating the assault weapons ban has taken a back burner to some of the other pressing problems facing the new President, first among them, I suppose, is the economy. Meanwhile, here's something you don't read every day.
In recent years the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has also lifted virtually all restrictions on imports of foreign-made assault weapons, permitting a flood of cheap Romanian, Bulgarian and other Eastern European AK-47s to enter the country, according to gun-control groups. "There's been an absolute deluge of these weapons," says Kristen Rand of the Violence Policy Center.
Is this what the gun enthusiasts refer to as freedom? Is this what they really want for America, a dramatic increase in the availability of guns, I'm only guessing that if the AKs are pouring in, pistols of every description are too. Is this freedom?
Why would the administration make an about-face on this issue? The political pressure must have been enormous.
In February, Holder called for restoring the federal ban on assault guns to help curb the flow of weapons to the Mexican cartels. As soon as he made the call, however, the NRA launched a fierce lobbying campaign—and 65 House Democrats signed a letter vowing to resist any gun-control measures. In the Senate, Montana Democrats Max Baucus and Jon Tester sent their own warning. "Senators to Attorney General Holder: Stay Away From Our Guns," read the press release.
Within days, White House aides instructed Justice officials to stop talking about the assault-weapons issue, according to congressional and administration officials who asked not to be identified because of political sensitivities.
I would imagine the arms manufacturers and importers have their own lobbyists but are happy to let the NRA take the spotlight. In this way a very vocal and powerful minority influences government to the detriment of all.
To be fair, I wouldn't want to claim that your average NRA member wants more gun violence or that he is heedless of the problems. But, I do suggest he is like a tantrum-prone 5-year-old boy who will do or say anything so mommy and daddy don't take his toys away. That kind of self-centered thinking is unconscionable in adult people who are supposed to be reasonable. And it is reason itself that cries out saying something is very wrong in The United States and more guns will just make it worse.
What's your opinion? Do you think it's a bad sign that Obama is abandoning one of his promises for political reasons? Do you think the elected officials, like those 65 Democrats who signed the letter to the President opposing gun control, are mainly old men who are diminishing in numbers? I read once that the demographics on hunters indicate that. Is there hope that over the next 10 or 20 years the percentages will shift? What do you think?
How does education figure into this? It does seem like the States which suffer most from inadequate schools are the same ones that vote Republican and support gun rights. What's the connection there? It seems to me that intelligence and reasonableness are part and parcel of the anti-gun mentality while the opposite traits too often seem to describe the pro-gun characters. There are exceptions on both sides, of course.
What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.
And you say you are respectful to those that disagree with you.ReplyDelete
But, I do suggest he is like a tantrum-prone 5-year-old boy who will do or say anything so mommy and daddy don't take his toys away. That kind of self-centered thinking is unconscionable in adult people who are supposed to be reasonable
Sorry Mike, defense of a specifically enumerated CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT is NOT self-centered thinking.ReplyDelete
If constant, vehement defense of my Constitutional rights is somehow "wrong," then I don't want to be right.
"It seems to me that intelligence and reasonableness are part and parcel of the anti-gun mentality while the opposite traits too often seem to describe the pro-gun characters."
You're kidding right Mike? Theres is nothing "reasonable" about anti-gunners in this country. Their notion of "compromise" is "don't fight us when we try to infringe on your rights at every turn."
Their notion of "reasonable" is an outright gun ban. They don't consider even that an "infringment." Who exactly are the one's being unreasonable again Mike?
It is mind-boggling that you could possibly call the pro-rights, pro-logic, pro-freedom crowd "unintelligent and unreasonable"
All we want is to be left the hell alone, yet our rights are continually under assault. As a law-abiding citizen I think wanting the gov. to stay the hell off of my guns and my rights is perfectly reasonable.
Yeah well, I've seen some pretty silly tantrums on this blog, now off to bed, Now Bob! AND NO ICE CREAM!ReplyDelete
Meanwhile, here's a pretty interesting link to atory about a Conservative Republican New Hampshire
ex Congressman who was in the news in the early part of this decade and managed to get in the news again.
He likes guns, but he says he's too chicken to go shoot a cop, himself.
You talked about "common sense" regulations like requiring all firearms to be registered.
Here is a reply to that...from the Washington Times (h/t to Alphecca)
Politicians and bureaucrats routinely claim that registration helps solve crimes. If a registered gun is used in a crime and left at the crime scene, registration supposedly lets the police trace the gun back to the criminal. Though this turn of events might work on fictional TV crime shows, it virtually never occurs in real life. Criminals' guns are rarely left at crime scenes. When guns are left behind, it usually is because a crook has been seriously injured or killed and the police are poised to catch him anyway.
Seems like that kills two canards in one shoot. Criminals leaving behind guns (you tried that one,didn't you MikeB?) and that registration helps solves crimes.
The few guns left at crime scenes rarely - if ever - are registered to the perpetrator. If they are registered at all, it is to someone else, whose piece was stolen. Despite what Mrs. Pelosi might think, those who use guns to commit major crimes such as robbing and killing are unlikely to respect her request to file paperwork so the government can catalog the tools of their trade.
Get that MikeB, criminals aren't going to obey registration.
Numerous examples disprove gun-control propaganda. Hawaii has had licensing and registration of guns for about 50 years. After all of the administrative expenses and inconvenience imposed on gun owners, police there cannot point to a single crime that has been solved as a result of those programs
Not a single crime on an ISLAND state has been solved by registration. If not there, what good would it do elsewhere?
Sounds like another island location where gun control hasn't worked, perhaps the U.K.
Perhaps those are the only two places where gun control doesn't work, eh?
Other jurisdictions with a history of strict handgun bans, such as the District of Columbia and Chicago, have even required registration of hunting rifles and shotguns for more than 20 years. Neither the District nor Chicago can point to any crimes that have been solved using registration records
And are gun owners paranoid that registration can lead to confiscation?
Because registration doesn't help solve crime, it is important to ask why government wants to register the people's firearms. History provides the answer. In countries from Australia to England, registration has been used to create lists of guns that later were confiscated by their governments. Despite Mrs. Pelosi's assurances to the contrary, Americans' fear that registration will lead to confiscation is well-founded. Indeed, Mrs. Pelosi's own state of California already has used existing registration lists to confiscate so-called assault weapons just a half-dozen years ago.
Read the whole thing...you'll find much of what we've been telling you is endorsed by the Editorial staff of a major metropolitan newspaper.
It has to be true if we read it in a newspaper, right?
Read the whole thing...you'll find much of what we've been telling you is endorsed by the Editorial staff of a major metropolitan newspaper.ReplyDelete
It has to be true if we read it in a newspaper, right?"Good one, Bob. I'm glad to see you haven't lost your sense of humor.
So MikeB, what do "reasonable" and "infringement" mean to you?ReplyDelete
Your buddies (The Brady's) think outright bans like the one in DC are reasonable and not infringements.
How do you define those terms? Do you need a dictionary?