Category Archives: gun control

Congratulations, Daniel Larson! You Are Our 2nd Amendment Hero Du Jour

Still not safer!

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. (WCCO) – Bloomington police say it is a miracle that a 10-month-old boy was not killed after a round from a high-powered rifle hit his crib, missing his head by inches.

Ten-month-old Charlie Sewell was asleep when a man visiting the home next door accidentally discharged a semi-automatic rifle.

The round went through the neighbor’s home, through the walls of the Sewell’s home, through Charlie’s stuffed animals, hit his crib and landed in the carpet.

“It didn’t dawn on us that it penetrated the house,” Erik Sewell said.

The Sewell family woke at midnight to find Daniel Larson at their front door telling them he had accidentally fired a high-powered rifle into their house.

“My finger slipped down and discharged the weapon,” Larson said.

He feels really bad about it, though, so, it’s okay! I don’t know why it “didn’t dawn” on them that the bullet might have traveled inside the house next door. That’s what fucking high-powered weapons do, you moron.

“I came in here [the nursery] and the cops were in here. And I said, ‘What is all this white stuff?’ And they said that the bunny had been hit,” Carin Sewell said.

The round hit Charlie’s basket of stuffed animals and then hit his crib, just inches from his head.
An officer found the bullet buried in the carpet.

“He [the officer] looked at me and said this is nothing short of a miracle that he is alive,” Carin Sewell said.

The story goes on to say that the Sewell family does not believe high-powered weapons should be allowed in residential neighborhoods. I’m sure they’ll get flamed by the gun loons for their trouble.

Thank you, NRA! We’re still not safer.

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Tennessee Gun Report

I’ve been way too busy this week to do my usual perusal of local news reports. Still, we have one accidental shooting this week — this one a fatality.

• September 22, 2014:

The only thing that can stop a bad guy with stolen guns is a woman with a couple of vases, apparently:

Authorities said a woman in East Brainerd slugged a man with two vases after he had walked in their house and attacked her husband.

The sheriff’s office said Joshua Aaron Mills had a short time earlier in the Wednesday incident walked into another house on the same street. They said he walked upstairs and stole $5,700 worth of guns.

Mills, 22, of 2421 Quail Nest Circle, is charged with two counts of aggravated burglary, theft and assault.

Walter Pryor Jr., another resident of Quail Nest Circle, said he had two construction workers inside his residence when a man wearing a gray shirt and brown shirts walked in and asked them about a job. They said the man, who identified himself as Josh Mills, proceeded to walk upstairs.

The workers a few minutes later saw the man jump down with several plastic gun cases and begin running toward some woods.

The guy proceeded to walk into another house in the street where a woman conked him on the head with a vase.

By the way, who leaves gun cases lying around when you’re having construction done on your house? Also, doesn’t the fact that guns are so often stolen from private residences negate the right-wing belief that criminals stay away from homes with guns? So much fail.

• September 20, 2014:

A 20-year-old Cordova man playing with a gun accidentally shot himself in the eye. UPDATE: he died.

• September 19, 2014:

Today in armed society/polite society: An argument between a man and his girlfriend led to the girlfriend’s sister being shot:

Investigators say the man, who lived at the home, got into an argument with his girlfriend. The girlfriend called her sister who came to the house.

When she arrived, police say Cook and the man got into an argument. Cook pulled a gun, the man armed himself and both of them fired shots.

The man was injured, the girlfriend’s sister was killed. Brilliant.

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Congratulations, Unidentified FL Man! You Are Our 2nd Amendment Hero Du Jour

Concealed-carry is so safe, y’all:

MANATEE — A 59-year-old Bradenton man accidentally shot his 58-year-old wife in the head about 8:40 a.m. Sunday in the 3800 block of 100th Street West, according to a Manatee County Sheriff’s Office report.

Deputies responded to Blake Medical Center to interview the principals separately.

Both said they were preparing to play golf when he removed a small five-shot revolver from his pocket, dropped it and it discharged when it hit the floor, according to the report. The round grazed the woman on the side of her head and they drove together to the emergency room.

The victim was alert and talking and was going to be released after receiving treatment for the wound.

At this time, this incident appears accidental, according to the report.

On the golf course, no less. What a dumbass.

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Tennessee Gun Report

[UPDATE]:

Meanwhile, in Nashville, this happened.

I live three blocks from here. Our cowardly state legislators refuse to do anything. They are completely useless.

———————————————-

Forgot to post this yesterday. One accidental shooting this week, a toddler. Brilliant.

• September 17, 2014:

1- high school football player in Memphis pulled a gun on an assistant coach after an argument. Thankfully, it was a toy gun.

2- Knoxville, Tennessee-based Lucky Gunner is one of four online retailers being sued by the parents of a victim of the Colorado theater shooting for providing ammo and weapons to shooter James Holmes:

The lawsuit says Holmes bought at least 4,300 rounds of ammunition from Lucky Gunner’s website, bulkammo.com, and 700 rounds of ammunition and a 100-round magazine from the Sportsman’s Guide website.

[...]

Dave Kopel, research director for the Independence Institute, a conservative-leaning Colorado think tank, said the suit will have a difficult time overcoming a federal law that protects the legal manufacture and sale of weapons and ammunition.

Previous lawsuits have attempted but failed to overturn the 2005 Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, said Kopel, an attorney who represents 53 Colorado sheriffs trying to overturn Colorado’s 2013 gun laws. They are appealing a federal judge’s ruling against them.

I just don’t understand why buying 4,300 rounds of ammo from a website is considered a legal sale of ammunition. The lawsuit also claims the website had no safeguards in place to prevent sales to “persons with criminal intent.”

• Septemeber 15, 2014:

1- A Murfreesboro mom accidentally shot her 11-month old baby when she pulled a 9mm out during a domestic dispute with her boyfriend.

2- A 15-year-old student at a Nashville high school brought a gun to school. She was attempting to sell it to another student.

3- A retired Chattanooga police officer shot his stepson in the leg:

Eidson said he told Ingle that he didn’t want to shoot him. But Ingle then rushed Eidson with his hand over his head in a fist. Eidson said the two bumped and the gun went off, shooting Ingle in the right leg, just above the knee.

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Congratulations, FL Man! You Are Our 2nd Amendment Hero Du Jour!

From the annals of responsible gun ownership, Florida-style:

A stunt from a 90s Western movie went horribly wrong when a Florida man tried to reenact elaborate gunplay — and shot and killed his sister during her birthday party.

Eric Stayton took a cue from the 1993 flick “Tombstone,” in which actor Michael Biehn, as Johnny Ringo, twirls his pistol during a barroom showdown with Val Kilmer, playing Doc Holliday.

Stayton turned the birthday celebration into a crime scene Saturday night when he accidentally shot his sister, 39-year-old Renee, Chaires, while she was standing next to her 23-year-old daughter and surrounded by about a dozen friends and relatives, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.

Both Chaires, a hair stylist, and her daughter were celebrating their birthdays.

Stayton was twirling his gun in the air, and as he attempted to put the weapon in his holster, it slipped from his hand, struck the concrete floor and fired.

I guess this time they can blame Hollywood movies and they’d be partially correct.

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AL Study: More Guns Do Not Equal Less Crime

The idea that more guns = less crime is one of those deeply-held wingnut beliefs which any sensible person knows defies logic and common sense. After all, America has more guns per capita than any other country in the world but we also have one of the highest crime rates.

It’s notoriously hard to detach right-wingers from their cherished myths; remember, these are the same people who remain convinced that lowering taxes increases tax revenues, and “trickle down” is a real thing.

But the main newspaper in Alabama decided to take a look at that state’s number of gun carry permits and compared it to state and country crime statistics, looking to see if any conclusions could be drawn.

It’s an interesting piece. It seems Alabama has the largest number of concealed-carry permits in the country, once all of the out-of-state permits Utah issues are accounted for. Does this correlate with lower crime? Well, not so much:

AL.com gathered the number of active pistol permits for 63 out of 67 counties. (Four didn’t respond despite repeated requests). But a statistical examination of Alabama’s county-by-county permit rates does not turn up any correlation with rates of serious crime. These offenses consist of homicide, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny theft, motor vehicle theft and arson.

Higher rates of concealed carry don’t seem to make one Alabama county safer than another, nor do they make a county less safe.

On the pro-gun side, they interviewed the controversial John Lott of the Crime Prevention Research Center, dutifully noting that Lott is widely regarded as a crank among serious researchers (and if you want to know why, this is a good place to start). They also interviewed Alabama citizens with carry permits, some of whom had personal stories to share about that one time their gun saved them from being a crime victim. Mostly, though, it seems most Alabama CCWers simply repeated the NRA talking points they’ve been fed for years: good guys with guns vs bad guys with guns, criminals won’t mess with people they think are armed, etc.

That last bit is another one of those conservative beliefs taken on faith, absent any proof in reality. Stanford Law’s John Donohue, whose own research joins the increasing pile of data debunking the more guns = less crime theory, says you could just as easily make the opposite argument:

One of the central premises of the deterrence argument is that criminals are reluctant to take on victims they believe are armed. He said the opposite is just as plausible. Perhaps criminals are more likely to arm themselves – or pull the trigger – when they think the victims have guns.

“Probably, the criminal will shoot you quicker in Alabama than in New York City, where they’re not expecting you to have a gun,” he said. “The NRA tends to think of things in terms of checkers, but criminal will think in terms of chess.”

The issue, of course, is much bigger than, “do more guns equal less crime”? Clearly they do not. But they do mean more illegal guns — and the large number of Alabama guns which end up being used in crimes in Illinois, New York, Tennessee, Florida, Connecticut and California highlights something I’ve been saying forever, which is that our hodge-podge of state gun laws have national repercussions. To think guns aren’t being trafficked from easy-access states across state lines by criminal elements is an especially nefarious form of willful ignorance.

There’s also the issue of gun accidents, which this study doesn’t address. I’ve long maintained that we will see an exponential escalation in accidental gun injuries and deaths, what with the post-Obama era of inexperienced, irresponsible people running out to get guns. We shall see.

The American Journal of Medicine did look at the issue of gun ownership and all gun deaths and found a very clear connection:

The team looked at the fraction of people who owned guns across 27 developed nations, including the United States, Switzerland, Finland, Australia and Japan.

Gun ownership was lowest in Japan and highest, by far, in the United States.

Gun ownership rates were strongly correlated with higher death rates from firearms.

In contrast, the incidence of major depression was only weakly linked to firearms-related deaths. (Data on other conditions such as schizophrenia were not widely available.)

And crime didn’t seem to be correlated at all with gun ownership rates. That suggests purchasing a gun doesn’t have an effect on overall crime rates, which include both violent and non-violent crimes.

“We can show that guns don’t make a nation safer,” Bangalore told LiveScience.

The study “provides some very convincing evidence that firearms-related deaths are very strongly correlated with prevalence of guns,” said Dr. Eric Fleegler, a health services researcher at Boston Children’s Hospital, who was not involved in the study.

There’s still a lot more research to be done. Now that the CDC and NIH are no longer barred from funding gun violence research, maybe we’ll be getting some answers.

I don’t expect any right-wingers to change their mind. These are the same people who still deny climate change is real, all evidence to the contrary. They’re not operating from an evidence-based worldview, they’re operating from an emotional one. But for those who do use evidence, not emotions, in crafting policy and making important decisions? It’s the death of yet another cherished wingnut myth.

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Congratulations, Unidentified OH Man! You Are Our 2nd Amendment Hero Du Jour

One of our safest, most responsible gun owners EVAH is, well, not. The headline says it all:

Concealed carry holder misses attacker in Cleveland road rage incident; shoots another man

CLEVELAND, Ohio — A Cleveland man legally carrying a concealed weapon missed his intended target and struck another man when he opened fire during a road rage incident, police said.

Oh, my. And it just gets worse when you read the story:

The Focus stopped and the three people inside — a 19-year-old man, a 22-year-old man and a 20-year-old woman behind the wheel — argued with the offending driver, a CCW permit holder.

The trio in the Focus left after the argument, but soon returned.

The 22-year-old passenger got out of the Focus and hurled a bottle at the permit holder’s car, cracking the windshield. The permit holder shot at the man as he sprinted away. The shooter missed his target and struck the 19-year-old man sitting in the Focus’ passenger seat.

First of all, firing a gun at someone who threw a bottle at your car is not an appropriate response. Give this idiot extra points for missing the bottle-thrower and hitting the innocent passenger, instead.

Once again, people with guns are dangerous, irresponsible buffoons.

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