Gun FAIL Electric Boogaloo

This story has received a lot of national attention but I feel like a main point has been lost: when is it time to take away mom or dad’s guns?

In Texas, a 93-year-old woman who failed a driver’s license exam became so upset when her nephew tried to take away her driving privileges she picked up a revolver.

The nephew said the woman, Pearlie Golden, threatened him so he called police in Hearne, Texas, which is located near the middle of the triangle formed by Dallas, Houston and San Antonio.

The arriving officer saw Golden waving a gun around in her yard and asked her to put down her weapon, but eventually he shot at her at least five times. CNN reports she was struck twice. Golden died at a hospital Wednesday night.

Right now everyone is focusing on whether the officer, who was subsequently fired, was right to shoot the woman. I think it’s debatable either way without seeing video. What I want to know is, if a 93-year-old woman isn’t able to operate a motor vehicle without endangering public safety, why did anyone think she was capable of handling a firearm? Based on how this story unfolded, clearly she was not.

I’ve read lots of stories about elderly people inappropriately brandishing firearms and either getting shot or shooting someone else. Just yesterday a 75-year-old South Carolina man pulled a gun on emergency responders at the scene of a car accident.

We talk a lot about when it’s time to take mom and dad’s car keys away from them. It’s just common sense that at a certain point you’re going to need to take their guns away, too. But, as this Texas case makes clear, do it carefully.

25 Comments

Filed under gun control

25 responses to “Gun FAIL Electric Boogaloo

  1. Ssgmarkcr

    If the nephew’s statement is corroborated by the investigation being conducted by the Texas Rangers, the city will likely have some hefty legal settlements to pay unless they hire the officer back.

    “Officer Stephen Stem responded to that 911 call. Stem ordered Golden to put the gun down, but Golden refused. Jones said Golden fired two shots gun into the ground. At that point, Robertson County District Attorney Coty Seigert said Stem fired four shots, hitting Golden twice, once in the arm and once in the upper chest. Golden later died at St. Joseph Hospital in Bryan.”
    http://www.kbtx.com/home/headlines/Nephew-Pearlie-Golden-Fired-Gun-Twice-258634411.html?device=tablet

  2. ThresherK

    Tangent from New England:

    Here’s some real civil disobedience also heavy on the optics containing rural white men.

    Somehow these Mainers were able to do this without any of that “aiming firearms at government officials” thing.

  3. deep

    Seriously? Is the city there so filled with gun nuts and anti-goverment psychos that they blame the officer first? What the fuck is wrong with Texas?

  4. Let me stipulate that I know NOTHING about this case except what the blog and the link from Ssgmarker report. But when I read this qoute from the officer’s atty:

    “In that kind of situation, officer Stem doesn’t have time to ask someone’s age, to ask someone’s ability to understand,” said McCabe. “He obviously didn’t know if Ms. Golden had any sort of dementia or any sort of diminished mental capacity.”

    I reflexively thought “Shoot first, ask questions later.” I mean was the woman menacing anyone or was she just ranting and raving in her own front yard? The nephew seemed safely secreted on the side of the house and if the officer hasn’t got sense enough to take cover until she calms down does he really have the skills to make a life and death decision?

    Tragic.

    • “He obviously didn’t know if Ms. Golden had any sort of dementia or any sort of diminished mental capacity.”

      Why does that even matter? You get a 911 call, a woman is threatening a man with a rifle, she’s told repeatedly to drop the gun and she does not, warning shots are fired and she does not, what is supposed to happen next? This all goes back to my first point: what the FUCK was she doing with a gun in the first place? Some people should not have guns, period — this lady was obviously one of them. The family should have taken away her guns before they took away her damn car keys.

    • I don’t care how old you are, if you are ranting with a gun in your hand and unresponsive to the commands of the officer, you are a menace. Waiving a gun does not make you a “patriot.” Nor is it civil disobedience. It is a sign of disregard for others. Rabid dogs are put down, and so should people waiving guns.

  5. Oh…In Re: Our Hostesses point. If there was a legislative effort to restrict gun possession in 90 year olds Sarah Palin would emerge and say “Told you they were gonna send Grandma and Grand Pa to the Death Camps.”

  6. Mary Wilson

    Well I sort of see both sides, BUT at 93, she might not be able to hear and why did the nephew hide instead of trying to help her? And shooting an OLD woman 5 times ?! And maybe, just maybe, the gun was the nephew’s, not HERS. There are just too many unknowns here, but the information that WAS released definitely justified the deputy shooting to KILL, not once but 5 times.

    • And why does holding a gun give you special rights of being treated with kid gloves? If she was running around with chain saw, would you be okay with shooting her?

    • tao

      The 911 operator could have gotten the age and mental state information from her nephew while the deputy was responding to the call. Lots more information needed here.

  7. There will be an investigation and the cop who shot the woman may or may not be acquitted. This differs markedly from the shootings of people by civilians in places like FL,TX,GA,AL–and most if not all of the rest of the LOSTS*– as well as far too many other states where they will be interviewed and, in many cases, released without a charge being filed.

    Guy who likes to use his military rank** in his online persona:

    You weren’t getting any traction here before you decided to only comment on posts that were not about shitheadz with teh gunz shooting other people. Your stock is not going up.

    * League Of Southern Traitor States

    ** Even though it’s not really his military rank

  8. ssgmarkcr

    “There will be an investigation and the cop who shot the woman may or may not be acquitted.”

    Demo, he doesn’t have to worry about being acquitted quite yet because he hasn’t been charged with any crime. So far he’s been fired at the city council who are attempting to appease angry voters and who’s actions might cost the city a good chunk of change.
    This situation has no parallel with any kind of stand your ground defense. The police was called and he was ordered to respond, he did, a witness who would be expected to potentially side with his relative has stated that the woman fired two shots. I imagine the Texas Rangers have the bullets in question and are verifying what gun it came out of.
    As for the rank thing, that’s a pretty thin issue to grasp onto, but if it makes you happy, go for it.

  9. “This situation has no parallel with any kind of stand your ground defense.”

    No shit, Sherlock. Stand your ground shootings get investigated when the DA feels like investigating them. Cops shooting people, not generally an option. There are ALL sorts of prosecutorial misconduct in some states but the shooting in TX will be investigated and it’s probable that the TX state police secured the crime scene to preserve evidence for a grand jury hearing.

    “As for the rank thing, that’s a pretty thin issue to grasp onto, but if it makes you happy, go for it.”

    Easy enough to change an e-mail address, especially when you use more than one, as it is.

    Why is it that you feel compelled to use a rank that is not yours? And why is it that you feel compelled to ignore the questions about your total lack of interest in any posts about gunz, on this blog, that involve fucking moronz with gunz doing incredibly stupid things with them? There has to be a reason, whether you’re willing to answer the questions or no

    I’d say that it’s likely that you’re another of mikeb’s regular gunztrollz who always exhibits a kneejerk reaction to any perceived attack on your inviolable RIGHT to play with, own and buy and sell any sort of weapons that you can afford.

    UPDATE:

    BULLETIN! BULLETIN!! BULLETIN!!!

    I took a detour over to mikeb’s and it appears that you ARE a troll. Have a nice day.

    • Ssgmarkcr

      “I took a detour over to mikeb’s and it appears that you ARE a troll. Have a nice day.”

      I guess that depends on your definition of a troll. If it involves not agreeing with every utterance of the blog owner, then I guess I am. You obviously didn’t detour long or you might possibly notice areas where I agree with Mikeb. Obviously SB here wants some give and take here or he would not take comments at all.
      And actually I at one point contributed an item that was not very flattering to the gun rights side of the issue. And it became a shoot the messenger event. Or perhaps my mistake was spelling correctly or not using enough z’s.
      So I kick in when there is a fact to contribute, like I did today. No worries.

      • I’m the only troll at mikeb’s place that actually carries an identity. Mike has radicalized me beyond any hope of redemption with too much knowledge of the ways of the gun worshippers. I’m just another gun-hating troll with very little to say or add to the discussion.

  10. ” guess that depends on your definition of a troll. If it involves not agreeing with every utterance of the blog owner, then I guess I am.”

    You only ever argue with the utterances that cast you moronz in a bad (that is to say, correct) light. You cite some nonsense cooked up by asshats like Lott and Kleck and expect people to take your word on other gunzloonz memez because of their flawed statistical studies. You rely on anecdote instead of evidence to support nonsense like Castel Doctrine and Stand Your Ground statutes. Your fear, and that of your fellow gunzloonz is palpable.

    “Obviously SB here wants some give and take here or he would not take comments at all.”

    Says a guy who only does the “give and take” on the gunzposts that don’t make him and his fellow gunslingerz be fucking moronz.

    Flying Junior:

    I stopped going over to mikeb’s because he doesn’t like that I call Greggie Camp and the rest of that gaggle of assclownz the fucking liars that they are.

    Flying Junior:

    I quit going there because mikeb insists on being “polite” to lying assholes like Greg Camp and the rest of the idiotz whose unbacked assertions he allows as if they were the “other side” of the story; they are not.

  11. Sorry to come to this party so late, but I really enjoyed the post and the comments.

    I agree with Southern Beale, elderly people often become incapable of safely handling firearms. In my perfect world there would be periodic testing of the necessary capacities, eye exams, physical shooting ability, psyche exams, etc. The extremist and mendacious notion that ownership of guns is a god-given and natural human right has to be overcome. Then hopefully we can achieve some kind of sensible gun control, including disarming the elderly who become unfit.

    And Demo, there are no trolls over at my blog since you left (only kidding).

  12. mikeb:

    Is Mr. Roadapple one of your’s?

  13. Look at Southern Beale’s TN Gun Report for this week. The guy who signs as Mr. Apple writes like a couple of the moronz that used to infect your threads.

  14. “SITE specific”, fuck.