Open Carry Kills

There was a mass shooting in Colorado Springs over the weekend, a city frequently in the news for gun accidents. 33-year-old Noah Harpham took his AR-15 and opened fire in a rampage that killed three people before police gunned him down.

If only this could have been prevented somehow. From the Denver Post:

Bettis said she recognized the gunman as her neighbor — whom she didn’t know by name — and that before the initial slaying she saw him roaming outside with a rifle. She called 911 to report the man, but a dispatcher explained that Colorado has an open carry law that allows public handling of firearms.

What have we been saying, people? Open carry or open fire: you can’t know until it’s too fucking late!

Slow clap, gun lobby. You’ve got blood on your hands.

8 Comments

Filed under gun control, gun violence, Guns

8 responses to “Open Carry Kills

  1. CB

    Why is it that community policing only seems to make a dent when people die in the process? I didn’t mean a good dent, just a dent. Isn’t part of the point to know who’s in the neighborhood, and why they’re doing something which is eliciting concern among their neighbors? You don’t run afoul of open carry laws if you just ask the guy what he’s doing roaming around his neighborhood. Don’t have to say anything about the gun, and if you’re an office, you’ve got one, too. Hey, he might be lost, or need help. It’s a sorry situation when you have concerned people in a residential neighborhood, and nobody lifts a finger until three people who didn’t have to die end up dead anyway.

  2. That dispatcher is guilty of criminal negligence. Never should have ignored a plea from a citizen. When police are called to investigate in a legal carry situation, the best response is to come out and interview the guy. If he backs down, no harm, no foul. If the guy is too “in your face” about the constitution, etc., I believe it is within the officer’s power to invent some minor charge just to get the guy down to the lock-up to cool his heels.

    I guess if the guy really is a psycho, hopefully a smart cop can recognize that as well.

  3. Sorry gents, you’re both going under the bus.

    CB: You don’t run afoul of open carry laws if you just ask the guy what he’s doing roaming around his neighborhood. Don’t have to say anything about the gun, and if you’re an officer, you’ve got one, too.

    Flying Junior: When police are called to investigate in a legal carry situation, the best response is to come out and interview the guy. If he backs down, no harm, no foul. … I guess if the guy really is a psycho, hopefully a smart cop can recognize that as well.

    In both these responses, there is an essential oversight. If all the players are sensible and wish to play nicely, then a ‘misunderstanding’ can be easily sorted out. Unfortunately, not all these situations lend themselves to reasonable reflection, and when they don’t and everything heads south, it does so VERY quickly, even if the lunatic is surrounded by cops (some of these people have shot up police stations, where they are ALL armed!)

    As Jim Jefferies points out, the law needs to reflect the capacities of the weakest minds, and while I’m not going to suggest that a stand-up comic is a major source of sociological wisdom, he only brings to light a dialogue that Americans should have been having some time ago.

    For example, how has American legislation reflected the fact that life is an ongoing process of maturation, and that sometimes that maturation process goes afoul? My younger son wanted to be a professional hockey player coming out of high school, but between much self-doubt and a car accident, he could no longer go that way? This took him to dark places, and to depression, and he had voiced suicide as well. And this is within a functional middle class Canadian home!

    There are many dysfunctional homes where considerably uglier events visit the people within. What’s the plan there? “Hey, we’re not a socialist nation! People are free to live as they choose.” This is an unsatisfying and tragic epitaph to those who’ve had their family members slaughtered by someone who a moment ago seemed sane, but by the enabling through CCW have just killed your loved ones.

    Time to think outside the box.

  4. So… What is the solution in the face of immediate danger?

    • You mean what does the rest of the first world civilizations do? That’s where you’ll have to step outside the box.

      This fix doesn’t take place at the last desperate moment you’re staring down a gun barrel. By then it’s far too late.

      • I’m glad that your son was able to sort things out. Adolescence and early adulthood can be trying times. Thank the Goddess that he didn’t have access to firearms.