Saturday, July 24, 2010

Sarah's Gunnin' for 2012

Via TBogg

Albuquerque Murder-Suicide reported on the murder suicide.

A gunman opened fire at an Albuquerque fiber optics manufacturer Monday, killing two people and wounding four others before turning the gun on himself in what police are calling a domestic violence dispute.

The suspect has been identified as 37-year-old Robert Reza.

Detectives and FBI agents reviewed surveillance video and questioned witnesses to determine Reza confronted his target, his former girlfriend and parent of his children, outside the building before entering and continuing to fire his weapon. A total of 20 to 25 bullets were found on the scene.

It seems like this all-too-frequent type of tragedy, which has come to actually symbolize the United States from abroad, so often ends with a self-inflicted gunshot. Where are all the lawful gun owners when we need them? Where are all the concealed carry guys, whom they say number in the millions? Why do we read of so few timely interventions?

Perhaps the answer is in order to have a discernable benefit, the one gun advocates keep talking about, we'd have to arm three or four times as many people. The way things are now, the number of guns in lawful hands is causing terrible problems. There's theft, accidents, improper transfers and of course the ever-increasing occasions of lawful gun owners turning bad.

Imagine if we increased that three or four fold?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Machine Gun Kelly

This young rapper is from Ohio. I wonder if the title refers to the fact that he's a "chip off the old block" of FatWhiteMan's generation. What do you think?

Crazy In Tennessee

Where to start?

I suppose we could start with the fact Tennessee is the birthplace of the KKK. The Klan is still quite active in the Volunteer state.

We could also start with the fact the Teabaggin' Linoge has adopted TN as his home state, thus lowering an already abysmally low collective IQ even further.

We could begin with TN's lack of gun laws that has TN in the top 5 states for gun homicides per capita.

However, today, we will shall start with Rep. Zach Wamp (R-CrazyTN). Wamp is a TN Congressman who flunked out of college because he liked Tennessee Sippin' Whiskey and Peruvian Marching Powder waaay too much. Of course, since he found God or Dolly Parton or Wayne LaPierre whatever, he just sleeps with a gun at his head. Literally:
"I sleep with a gun next to my head and I'm not going to tell you what it is or frankly who it's titled to."

The cokehead alcoholic who sleeps with a gun next to his head wants to be Governor of Crazy Tennessee. In an interview, Wamp said that if Health Care Reform wasn't repealed, TN would have to secede.

All I can say is--go ahead. Please go.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Those Law and Order Types

"Imagine if he'd had a gun."

More on the ACLU and Byron Williams

Over at AlterNet, Joshua Holland lays out the recent history of ACLU activity with regards gun rights, including the case we looked at the other day.

None of this makes any difference. As I’ve written before, the debate over gun ownership now has little to do with substantive policy issues. Guns have become part of the culture wars, which means that no matter how secure the right to own a firearm may be in the courts — in reality — the gun lobby and firearms manufacturers have too much at stake to let the specter of the gummint taking your shooting irons go away. And there are always people who are easily suckered and buy their dark conspiracy theories.

But make no mistake: theirs is an incredibly dangerous brand of demagoguery, because the suckers who buy the gun lobby’s spin are heavily armed.

He's referrring to Byron Williams, whom we've recently discussed. And, I'm afraid Byron is not the only one out there.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Two Strikes You're Out

The Chigcago Tribune reports on the antics of a clumsy deputy.

A Lake County sheriff's deputy has been placed on leave after her gun fell out of its holster and skidded across the floor of the crowded courthouse lobby Wednesday morning.

The gun did not discharge, but the incident, which occurred about 8:30 a.m., prompted at least one witness to phone security.

The sheriff's office confirmed the courthouse deputy is the same officer who accidentally shot herself while retrieving her service weapon from the trunk of her car in the Lake County Courthouse parking garage in February 2009. The bullet went through Deputy Karen Harris' hand and then lodged in her abdomen, but she eventually recovered and was able to return to work.

What's your opinion? Should she be given another break and after some administrative leave with pay, return to duty? Or, do you agree with me, that she should have been fired and stripped of her gun-owning rights after the first incident?

Please leave a comment.

Dramatic DGU

The Denver Post reports on an extremely dramatic DGU.

A man living near the University of Denver wrestled a gun from one of three would-be robbers Tuesday night and shot him dead.

Maybe this could be a higher class of DGU, the ones where the victim is unarmed and shoots the bad guy with the bad guy's own gun. I doubt if there'd be more than a million of those a year, though. What do you think?

Please leave a comment.

An Unusual Shooting

The Associated Press reports on an unusual shooting incident.

A North Carolina man faces a felony charge after police said he shot his wife with a wad of toilet paper stuffed into a gun. Multiple media outlets reported Wednesday that a 38-year-old man was charged with assault with a deadly weapon. Rockingham County sheriff's deputies said he shot his wife after she returned to their home after midnight on Tuesday.

Rockingham County Sheriff's Department spokesman Dean Venable told WGHP that the man loaded a black powder pistol with toilet paper, then fired the weapon at his 55-year-old wife, who was in bed.

Now, these guys who own black-powder guns are what, collectors usually, hunters? They're gun buffs who normally wouldn't act in an irresponsible manner, right?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Insurrectionist Idea

We may have discussed this before, but I liked it so much, here goes. On The Huffington Post a couple weeks ago Josh Horwitz wrote a wonderful article.

Two summers ago, I blogged with great concern about a statement made by Justice Scalia in the Supreme Court's landmark Second Amendment opinion, District of Columbia v. Heller. Writing for the 5-4 majority, Justice Scalia found an individual right to keep and bear arms and opined that, "If...the Second Amendment right is no more than the right to keep and use weapons as a member of an organized militia ... If, that is, the organized militia is the sole institutional beneficiary of the Second Amendment's guarantee -- it does not assure the existence of a 'citizens' militia' as a safeguard against tyranny."

Regrettably, since the Heller decision, many gun rights commentators have used Scalia's construct to link the need for unfettered access to firearms with a right to engage in political violence against an administration that has been described as "a secular socialist machine [that] represents as great a threat to America as Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union once did." The past two years have seen several disturbing acts of politically-motivated violence and a dramatic increase in the number of threats against the president and Members of Congress. Equally troubling, gun rights activists have begun to openly carry firearms to political events and presidential speeches in a threatening manner.

I've read so much exaggerated nuttiness on the pro-gun blogs that I question whether it can all be traced back to what Scalia said. Nevertheless, it is nuttiness. On my own blog, we've had tedious arguments in which the gun lovers would insist they'd shoot it out rather than let their guns be taken away. The only problem is usually those remarks came in the middle of other discussions which had nothing to do with gun confiscation. Like adolescent school boys, they love to do this macho posturing.

In fact, resisting a perceived tyrant in the form of the Democratically elected government of the United States of America in the 21st century, that is in today's society, is not only unrealistic and impossible but actually contrary to what the proper relationship between the governed and the government should be. Please spare us the usual examples of the Redcoats and the Colonists and all the rest.

The German political economist [Max Weber] proffered in the early 20th century that a political entity is not a state unless it possesses a monopoly of force (i.e., the power to enforce the law). The concept of a monopoly of force is anathema to those who embrace the insurrectionist idea because it forecloses the use of political violence; which rhetorically -- and in some cases in action -- seems to be all the rage on the political right. Nonetheless, Roberts was correct. America's Founding Fathers recognized that a State does not -- and cannot -- exist unless it upholds its claim to the monopoly on force. As the author of the Second Amendment, James Madison, put it at the Virginia Ratifying Convention: "There never was a government without force. What is the meaning of government? An institution to make people do their duty. A government leaving it to a man to do his duty, or not, as he pleases, would be a new species of government, or rather no government at all."

What's your opinion? Maybe there's something to quoting the founders after all. What do you think?

Please leave a comment.

In Nevada They Like Their Guns

The Las Vegas Review-Journal ran a story about a recent poll.

In a place where gun ranges advertise assault rifles and machine guns on billboards and taxicab doors, it's clear Nevadans like their guns.

Almost four in five registered voters questioned in a poll taken for the Las Vegas Review-Journal and KLAS-TV, Channel 8, said they agree with a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision that gun ownership is a fundamental right for all law-abiding citizens. Fifteen percent said they disagreed with the ruling and 6 percent were unsure.

There's certainly no surprise there. I wondered how these attitudes affect the millions of visitors and transient residents of the state. These folks, who are not Nevada voters, far outnumber the residents who are. Perhaps it's something like the way they handle prostitution. Within the city limits of Las Vegas, it's illegal but tolerated, in the rest of the state there are legal brothels. Maybe they treat guns the same way.

Bob Irwin, owner of The Gun Store, said the polling results are not surprising because the Founding Fathers "made their intent clear in the Constitution."

"You're dealing with guys who had just finished throwing off a British tyranny with guns. If they hadn't, we'd be counting our change in shillings and speaking with British accents," Irwin said.

"If you don't have a right to a gun, you don't have the right to defend your own life. You have a basic right to survive and to protect yourself and your family from criminals."

Don't these guys ever tire of referring back to the Founders? Bob Irwin and his clientele have about as much to do with the Founding Fathers as they do with Cochise and Sitting Bull.

Something I don't accept is the idea that owning a gun is necessary to defend your life. Where does that come from? You could just as easily claim that you need claymore mines and rocket launchers to defend yourself and your family.

What's your opinion? Is the Libertarian spirit of Nevada something we want to base national policy on?

Please leave a comment.

In Spite of Republican Resistance

Yahoo News reports the good news. I knew it was coming when I saw this video over at Phuck Politics.

Glenn Beck and Byron Williams has more on the story Jadegold posted about last week.

Police said last night that Byron Williams, the heavily armed man who got into a shootout with police after being pulled over in Oakland Sunday, was en route to kill officials in the San Francisco offices of the Tides Foundation and the ACLU.

The ACLU has been a whipping boy of the right for years. But the Tides Foundation? If you haven't heard of Tides, a standard-issue lefty foundation that's been around since the 1970s, it probably means you don't watch the Glenn Beck program. It turns out that Beck rails against Tides constantly on his program — roughly weekly, according to our search of his show transcripts. That includes two shows less than a week before the July 18 shooting. Tides frequently appears on Beck's famous blackboard renderings of who is pulling the strings of the Obama administration and the liberal media.

I blame Glenn Beck. Through his cleverly orchestrated public persona, which I believe has personal enrichment as its only scope, old Glenn is doing lots of damage in the country. The vast majority of his adherents do not act out violently, but are they better off? Are they mentally healthier and more productive? Are they better citizens? I don't think so.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Dennis Henigan on Heller and McDonald

I like this guy, I like everything he says.

$10,000 Reward for Information about Gun Theft reports on the collaboration of the local gun industry in trying to retrieve 44 weapons stolen from a Michigan gun shop.

Two groups are assisting police agencies by offering an additional $5,000 reward in connection with the theft of 44 guns last week at Flanary’s Performance Center & Guns, a federally licensed firearms dealer in Garden City.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation, the trade association for the firearms industry, and the Michigan Association of Firearms Retailers, which is affiliated with the NSSF, are offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the July 9 burglary and 44 firearms.

The reward offer matches a $5,000 reward being offered by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

“Our matching reward offer will hopefully help assist ATF and local law enforcement in solving this crime against a federally licensed firearms dealer and lead to the swift recovery of stolen firearms before they can enter the illegal underground black market where they can be misused to commit violent crimes,” said Steve Sanetti, president of the NSSF. “The matching reward payment by NSSF and MIAFR will be granted only following payment of the initial ATF reward.”

MIAFR President Glenn Duncan said the reward is a sign of the gun industry’s concern about the incident.

Does that sound like a big reward to you? It comes to just over $200 per gun. Wouldn't $50,000 or $100,000 be more like it, especially if they want to claim industry concern?

What do you think about the ease with which these thieves got into the place? Before "forcibly" breaking in, the criminals demonstrated tremendous sophistication and expertise in their chosen profession.

According to one published report, before the break-in, the thieves managed to rip the electrical meter equipment off of the back of the building, completely disabling the power supply and shutting off the surveillance cameras.

What's your opinion? Is the control center for all the electronic security equipment so accessible on a bank? Is the bank's electrical meter so easily breached? No, of course not.

Why do you think jewellers remove their products from the glass display cases at night?

Don't you think sellers of firearms should be required to provide adequate security so their product cannot be stolen?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

This is My Jack-knife

Gun Flow into Mexico - Part 27

Flying Junior wrote a wonderful post about the gun flow into Mexico. After describing the situation based on recent news reports, a situation which seems to continue in spite of all the pro-gun minimizing of it, he concludes like this.

But alas, Obama couldn’t risk his perfect record of kowtowing to the gun lobby and its maniacal cadre of gun owners. Fat lot of good it did him, since idiots like Zach Wamp still campaign on protecting our guns from Obama. Fear not gun owners, Obama doesn’t want to make you fill out any extra paperwork or register your guns with the ATF. That’s right. His idea? Send a bunch of National Guard troops to the border for a summer vacation.

What's your opinion? Should we spend another month of two arguing whether it's 90% or 19%? Isn't the fact simple enough that it's too much, whatever the percentage is?

Flying Junior included an interesting aspect to the argument. Earlier, the pro-gun argument seemed to be that the guns which "could not be traced" were the ones the investigators knew were not from the States. The idea was that all the early reports were carefully worded to conceal the fact that the majority of guns seized were in fact from elsewhere. But, now we have this idea.

The record keeping is not always perfect. In trying to track guns confiscated in Mexico last year, agents found that one in five of the guns could not be traced because the dealers had no record of the sale or had gone out of business and the records had been lost. Even when the original legal buyer is located, a gun owner in many states, can legally say “I lost it” or “I sold it to someone I do not know.”

Dealers are not obligated to tell the authorities about multiple sales of rifles like the AK-47, as they must do with pistols.

That would mean that many of the "untraced" weapons did indeed come from the U.S.

What's your opinion? Do we have to revise the figure back up towards the famous 90%? Or, do you agree with me that the exact percentage is not the point? The point is too many guns are flowing into Mexico due to lax or non-existent gun laws and poor enforcement of the laws we do have.

Please leave a comment.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Man Defends Parent's Home; Kills Nine Home Invaders

A St.Paul man used a shotgun to kill nine would-be home invaders. But another twelve invaders escaped by fleeing in what is believed to be a late-model red Smart Car.
Well, not really:
The man who police say fired several shots in his mother's Roberts, Wis., home while hallucinating a clown attack pleaded not guilty Monday to felony charges.

Gun Shows and Sales Taxes reports on the situation in Wyoming of collecting sales tax at gun shows.

The Wyoming Department of Revenue has suspended sales tax collections from gun shows because of increasing animosity toward the state's field tax agents.

Dan Noble, director of the department's excise tax division, said Friday that an incident at a gun show triggered the decision.

He added, however, that resistance from gun show sponsors and participants has been a recurring problem statewide.

"I have 10 field reps throughout the state, and every one of them has experienced some animosity," he said. "Folks are nervous anyway because there are guns there. I don't want to put my people at risk."

Guns shows, like craft shows, are required to set up temporary sales tax licenses but do not have to pay the $60 fee for a permanent sales tax license.

The department's field tax representatives attend the shows and ask the sponsors to distribute tax forms to the sellers who, in turn, are required to collect and remit sales tax to the Department of Revenue.

Some gun owners feel the 2nd Amendment should exonerate them from the requirement of paying sales tax. Others just hate the government, I guess.

What I'm wondering is where are all those well-behaved and respectful gun owners I keep hearing about. The article said the same problem exists in other states.

"Everybody's on edge," said John Wise, director of the Pine Bluffs Shooting Association and of the gun show.

Identifying himself as a "tea partier and damned proud of it," Wise said Friday that people are angry at the federal government over health care reform and other actions.

Wise said he was sitting at the front desk during the April gun show at Pine Bluffs when a participant got into a confrontation with a state sales tax representative. The tax agent called for backup from the Pine Bluffs Police Department.

Wise said the police officer intervened, the tax agent left and no charges were filed. He said he thought both men had "short fuses."

Wise said that individual gun owners who pay $30 to rent a table at a gun show so they can sell a couple of guns should not have to collect sales tax for the state.

What's your opinion? Is this just another anomaly? Are these wild exaggerations? Or are many gun owners loud-mouth bullies who think they deserve a pass from things like taxes?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Paralyzed Officer Sues Glock - Loses

Mercury News reports.

LOS ANGELES—A retired Los Angeles policeman who was paralyzed when his son accidentally fired his handgun has lost a lawsuit against the gunmaker.

A judge on Friday dismissed the product liability suit against Glock Inc.

Enrique Chavez was shot in the back by his 3-year-old son in 2006 and paralyzed from the waist down. The boy was riding in his truck and grabbed his .45-caliber Glock 21 pistol from the back seat.

The lawsuit claimed the Glock's trigger safety design was at fault.

But Superior Court Judge Kevin Brazile said the LAPD had concluded the Glock was safer than other brands. He threw out the case against Glock, the gun's seller and the maker and seller of a holster.

Chavez's attorney, Justin Ehrlich, says the decision will be appealed.

The fault was with Officer Chavez who left his gun within reach of a 3-year-old. If the circumstances hadn't already punished him excessively, I'd say he should be in jail.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

San Jose Knife-Gun Attack

Mercury News reports on the violent scene.

The San Jose man who is suspected of stabbing one woman, shooting another to death and then waiting for the police to come arrest him, was arraigned Friday on murder and attempted murder charges.

Robert Turner, 61, who is being held without bail, faces life in prison if convicted.

According to police, witnesses and court documents, Turner was in an argument with the two women when he stabbed Lucy Ferscas, 48, with a hunting knife. Then, he shot and fatally wounded Verna Lisa Hollins, also 48, who may have been trying to help Ferscas.

I suppose the gun apologists will say he didn't really want to kill the first woman. What I say is this case perfectly illustrates the difference in lethality between a hunting knife and a gun.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Michigan Voters are So Guillible

Triple Murder in St. Paul MN reports on the terrible family shooting.

Police on Sunday identified three victims fatally shot Friday at a home in St. Paul's Highland Park neighborhood.

Patrick Thomas McHugh, 55, of St. Paul, is suspected of shooting and killing his sister Mary Malicki, 58; her daughter, Kristy Malicki, 33; and his sister's husband, Clyde Malicki, 58, according to St. Paul police.

A fourth gunshot victim, Kathleen Dorgan, 56, who is also McHugh's sister, remained in stable condition Sunday night at Regions Hospital in St. Paul. All of the victims are from Cottage Grove.

McHugh is in custody at the Ramsey County jail. Authorities expect he will face criminal charges today.

The shooting happened at about 9 p.m. Friday at McHugh's house, 1825 Munster Ave. in St. Paul, where he lives with his 80-year-old mother, Kathleen McHugh. She was home at the time, but she wasn't injured in the assault.

The caller who reported the shooting to police gave Patrick McHugh's name and description.

When police arrived, they found four gunshot victims inside the house. Mary and Kristy Malicki were dead at the scene. Paramedics transported the two other victims to Regions, where Clyde Malicki died Saturday.

The neighbors all thought they were wonderful people. Never, in a million years, would they have expected something like this.

The problem: easy access to guns, their proliferation and acceptance in society. Without all that, Mr. McHugh, who lived at home with his mother his entire life and probably had no need of a gun, might not have had one. In that case the attack probably would not have been so deadly.

The solution: fewer guns.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Monday, July 19, 2010

"I Think We're Going To Be Caught Up In a Revolution"

Angry NRA member goes postal:
She said her son, who had been a carpenter and a cabinetmaker before his imprisonment, was angry about his unemployment and about "what's happening to our country."

Williams watched the news on television and was upset by "the way Congress was railroading through all these left-wing agenda items," his mother said.

It doesn't appear the mom is quite playing with a full deck either.

But this is what you reap when the NRA and Fox News keep bombarding us with incendiary and seditious rhetoric.

Grassroots Support

FatWhiteMan said there's no grassroots support in the gun control movement.

Jadegold said there is and supplied this link to prove it.

I was scrolling down the names and noticed, after about ten minutes, the list is so long, the names of the entire Zappa family are there. I thought it's interesting since the late great Frank Zappa was such a big supporter of the 1st Amendment.

I often get the impression from pro-gun folks that they have some kind of proprietary relationship with all the Amendments. But, the fact is many of the individuals and organizations named on the NRA list, are supporters of 1A, yet have earned their place on this list as being "anti-gun."

My belief is it's not so much a question of supporting individual rights as it is one of common sense and honesty. The current interpretation of the 2nd Amendment by the Supreme Court is bogus, the ACLU said so. The notion that the gun-rights movement has more grassroots support than their opponents is bogus, Jadegold said so.

What's your Opinion? Please leave a comment.

Cure for Jet-Lag

I thought Jack Bauer was addictive until I got to know these guys.

The ACLU Loses Its Mind

St. Louis Today reports on this fascinating decision by the ACLU. It's a fascinating decision because they have the right idea about so much, I don't know what they're thinking in this case.

The American Civil Liberties Union is petitioning a court to help an 85-year-old man get his guns back from Florida's Broward Sheriff's Office.

For what may be the first time, the ACLU says, it is advocating on behalf of a gun owner to get his weapons back. And they're doing so free of charge.

That the ACLU, a longtime target of conservatives' scorn, is supporting gun ownership is "a breath of fresh air," said Marion P. Hammer, board member of the National Rifle Association.

Most people have understood all along that the ACLU does not pick and choose, that they defend all rights. I never thought they needed to prove anything, least of all to the NRA, but the strangest thing is their choice of this case. An elderly man, who recently lost his wife and expressed suicidal desires, should not have guns. The sheriff's department did the right thing and should stick with it. Further proving his unfitness, he said, "They'd been in the drawer over 20 years. They were loaded."

This may very well apply to the majority of gun owners, those who have loaded guns in the closet or in the drawer for years without practicing with them or even cleaning them periodically. These are the guns that end up getting misused. When a gun owner like that displays evidence of no longer being fit to responsibly maintain the guns, he should forfeit then.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Fresno Police Shoot Unarmed Man

Mercury News reports:

Fresno police say they shot and wounded an apparently unarmed man who claimed he had a gun.

Police Chief Jerry Dyer says the man told police three times he was carrying "a piece," meaning a gun.

Dyer says an officer shot the man twice because he believed the man was reaching for a weapon.

When is it permissable to shoot someone? Do you think the cops acted too quickly in this case?

Please leave a comment.

Washington State Park Shooting

The Seattle Times reports on a deadly shooting which took place in a State park near Seattle.

A shooting at a state park near Seattle that left two dead and four wounded stemmed from an argument between two groups, one of which was celebrating a birthday party, investigators said Sunday.

King County Sheriff's Sgt. John Urquhart said killed in the shooting Saturday night at Lake Sammamish State Park were one man from each group: a 33-year-old from Kent, Wash., and a 30-year-old from Seattle.

The park is about 20 miles east of downtown Seattle.

One of the dead men was found with a gun on his body, while the other was not found with a weapon, Urquhart said. Their names were not released.

The violence erupted around 9 p.m. at the edge of the lake between the two groups, who were about 50 to 75 yards apart. Urquhart said investigators are still determining what the groups were arguing about and what caused the dispute to escalate into gunfire.

Isn't Seattle the place where they had that big controversy about the laws allowing guns in parks? Or would this State park be covered by the law Obama signed last year, Obama the biggest anti-gun president in recent memory?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

The NRA in New Zealand

Dog shoots owner in...well, this kinda writes itself:
A New Zealand man has good reason to question whether his dog is truly his best friend after his family pet shot him in the backside in a potentially fatal accident.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Pistol-Packin' PA Pastor Sentenced

The Associated Press carried the story of the sentencing of a Pennsylvania Pastor who shot and killed his own son.

MEDIA, Pa. — A pastor from suburban Philadelphia has admitted fatally shooting his eldest son after a violent confrontation at the family's home on Christmas.

Forty-four-year-old Kirk Caldwell pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in Delaware County Court on Monday. Judge Frank Hazel sentenced Caldwell to two to four years in prison, minus time served.

The pastor testified that 21-year-old Jordan Caldwell had a history of violence that erupted in assaults on friends and family on Dec. 25.

Kirk Caldwell says he felt threatened and fired a single shot when his son refused to leave their Darby home.

Caldwell was a pastor at End Times Harvest Mission in Philadelphia. Many court witnesses praised him as a strong family man and leader.

This pastor-killing-son incident has become another recognizably American phenomenon. I first heard of it when Marvin Gaye was killed. Then Spike Lee portrayed it in his great movie Jungle Fever. I imagine it's happened a few times in between too.

Do you think the good reverend got off light? Even if he is a "strong family man and leader," he did shoot another man to death with a gun and it wasn't ruled a DGU.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Gun Range Suicide

The Chicago Sun-Times reports.

VALPARAISO, Ind. -- Authorities say a 60-year-old man fatally shot himself in the head at the shooting range of a northwestern Indiana sporting good store.

Valparaiso police say the man was shooting a gun he had told Blythe's Sport Shop employees that he was interested in buying. He was taken after Tuesday's shooting to a hospital where he died a short time later.

Once before we talked about this
. In today's story it's not clear, but is it normal that someone can express interest in a particular gun, take it in back to the range to try it out, and then, if interested, submit to the background check? That's what we talked about the last time.

What's your opinion? I know some will say these kinds of incidents are rare, but are they really? They seem to be more common than DGUs, if you go by the media reports.

Please leave a comment.