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EDITORIAL: Guns and money

The National Rifle Association has a new target for mass shootings in America: media. The NRA joined gun-rights advocates and conservative legislators last week in blaming news organizations for the national epidemic that takes the lives of so many.

“The mainstream media love mass shootings,” the Fairfax-based NRA proclaimed in a video directing attention away from it guns-rights agenda.

The media-hating message from the NRA resonated with some supporters in Loudoun.

“You just can’t help yourself,” one reader, who identified himself as an NRA member, wrote about Times-Mirror coverage that has included an editorial, letters from mothers of school children and an appeal to stop the madness from a former soldier trained to use assault weapons.

The reader is right: We can’t help ourselves. Not when assault weapons are used to murder school children.

It would be hard to find a newsroom in the U.S. that hasn’t been affected by covering unspeakable tragedies caused by the availability of guns. Journalists are the reporters as well as the victims of gun violence. They were on the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg when 32 people were killed. They watched as a TV reporter and photographer were killed in Roanoke as they filmed an interview. They look repeatedly at the landscape of America’s gun culture and warn that the carnage will be repeated if nothing is done.

Nothing has been done.

There are thought to be about 300 million guns in the U.S., held by about a third of the population. That is nearly enough guns for every man, woman and child in the country. The right to own guns is regarded by many as enshrined in the Second Amendment to the Constitution. That brings the nation to a moral impasse.

The impasse speaks to troubling aspects of the American psyche. The victims of mass shootings are chosen not for what they have done, but simply for where they happen to be. There is no universally accepted definition of a public mass shooting. To consider it narrowly, the definition does not include shootings tied to gang disputes or robberies that went awry, and it does not include shootings that took place exclusively in private homes. A broader definition would yield much higher numbers.

The fact that’s spooking all communities is that any group of people, anywhere — including students attending school — could be killed at random by a stranger or by someone they know. The mental health of American society may be fragile, but the more disturbing realization is that much of America is armed and dangerous.

It doesn’t take enlightenment to understand that, when mass shootings consistently strike down children in our schools, comprehensive gun reform is required. Weapons designed for combat should be restricted to the military in combat zones, not made available to students in Virginia and Florida. Banning assault weapons doesn’t threaten the Second Amendment. It’s an act of common sense.

Defending guns over human life is unconscionable. Let us say that again: Defending guns over human life is unconscionable.

We cannot and should not accept tactics by the NRA that blame media or justify tragedies as abstractions. Blame-shifting serves only to marginalize attempts to solve a national problem. The NRA, as well as those in the Virginia legislature who block gun reforms, count on helplessness. They expect citizens to feel numb and powerless.

Even partial solutions save whole lives. Small changes to gun control laws could save lives. Banning semi-automatic weapons could save lives. Making it harder to purchase a gun could save lives.

Listen to the voices and stories coming from students in our schools. Intransigence can no longer be accepted as an option. We should hold our elected leaders to action on gun reform, rather than excuse them for accepting money intended to spread helplessness.

Helplessness is a lie that makes victims of us all. That ends now.


Hardworkingamerican, where does the blame lie? Surely, it’s not because we let mentally ill, those not fully mature enough to handle life’s stresses, or give access to assault weapons that can create massive amounts of deaths and injuries, with no waiting period, is it? Gina Haspel? Do you condone torture? Maybe you don’t realize why liberals are blasting her, and Obama would have NEVER allowed torture. If torture isn’t a swamp thing then what is? Really, I want to hear your opinion. Wow, you guys just can’t get pass Obama. Tell me where the double standard is because Obama or liberals would never ever be alright with torture. The fact that you make up statements about what would happen ‘if’, and not facts, making up lies, that is the social sickness that is infecting this country today. It seems to be a conservative thing that if you don’t like the truth there is an alternative fact for that. Talking about double standards.

jplegend ,you’re right, that’s why the NRA buys off politicians. Ask Comstock!

jplegend and Mitch great to continue to point out the ignorance of those who love to blame anyone and everything but where the blame needs to lie.  Let’s give a great shout out to Donald Trump for his CIA appointment of Gina Haspel, hopefully she will get things done in the right way and for the right reasons.  Draining the swamp is a slow and tedious job.  Amazing how liberals are blasting this appointment and if Obama had done it he would be praised.  The hateful double liberal standards are the social sickness that continues to infect this country.

davis, intelligent people know that the NRA has zero power to pass laws. That is solely the job of congress. Gazillions of entities impact elections. Your job is to vote in or out the appropriate representatives. Stop whining and sniveling about the NRA and take some responsibility on your own shoulders as part of an electorate that put those people in place.

Amerigirl, thank you so much for agreeing with the arguments of gun rights supporters everywhere. When finally backed into a corner with the obvious reality that we can see next door to us how very restrictive gun laws do not result in fewer shooting homicides, you avoid the utter failure of your arguments and say “look at the economy of the areas.” Yes, and Amen! A hearty cheer! That is exactly MY point. It’s NOT the guns. But GUNS are all that is being talked about.

Unfortunately your false statements make it very fruitless to argue with you. You say “I never said that there had never been guns in schools before.” First, that is a false implication that I said you did say that. I did not. Second, you are trying to deceive by pretending you didn’t say what you did say—that talking about guns being routinely in schools was talking about “pioneer days.” You’ve been proven wrong, and assault weapons have nothing to do with it. There used to be, until recently, kids bringing guns to schools. Those kids did not shoot anyone. Yes, Gun-Free School zones were created because one or more people DID use a gun to shoot people. But the problem has gotten worse since then, not better. So CLEARLY, to the thinking person, the GUN FREE zone law did NOT solve the problem. If you were going to draw a conclusion just based on that law, you would have to say it made the problem WORSE. Meanwhile, I keep asking, and you don’t have an answer for why kids are shooting other kids. You just keep pointing to scary guns.

Another false statement: “I NEVER said that people should not have the right to own guns.” I don’t believe I accused you of that—can’t find it in any of my posts. So the only misquoting going on is by you. Feel free to point to my quote accusing you of that, and I’ll apologize.

Another: “I have NEVER said that there should be laws against law-abiding citizens.” You referred to the “Assault Weapons” ban in a supportive way, and questioned why anyone needs a high-capacity semi-automatic. You’ve made many comments against the AR-15. Restricting the purchase of AR-15s, outlawing the standard-capacity 17 round magazine that my pistol uses, those are are laws penalizing law-abiding citizens. No-fly, No-buy law you just advocated? THAT is a restriction on law-abiding citizens. Those are people that haven’t committed a crime. Multiple congressmen have been “accidentally” put on the no-fly list, and many other people who have been convicted of nothing.

Oh yeah, let’s let the government pick and choose who has their rights removed, without any trial. You’ve heard of the Gestapo, right? KGB? The No-Fly list is the same government that has put Congressman and innocent people (not necessarily the same group ;-) on that secret suspect list, that you don’t know you are on, it’s almost impossible to get off, and there is no right of due process? The same government that uses the IRS to deny First Amendment rights? The same government that tries to set up people on gun charges and shoots an unarmed mother while she’s holding her baby? The same government that has a SWAT team at its tax collection agency, and its enviro regulation agency? The same government that knew about the Parkland shooter and did nothing? Oh, and here’s a great one—the Orlando night club shooter WAS on the no-fly list. And our crackerjack government took him off before he shot up the night club. Right, let’s them decide who has Constitutional rights and who doesn’t.

Name one law that you support and gun-rights supporters oppose that DOESN’T restrict the rights of law abiding citizens? Name one law you support that would actually prevent someone intent on disobeying the law from killing a lot of people. I can, easily, but they involve giving people the freedom to defend themselves. Or we could actually look at the real causes of these shootings, instead of focusing on the inanimate objects. You rant about my focus on inanimate objects—another deception, as you are the one blaming the inanimate objects for what people do with them, and you are trying to restrict the freedom of others to have the gun they want. You have the gun you chose, but want to deny law abiding citizens their right to choose the gun they want. That is blatant hypocrisy. Right inline with the deceptions, false statements, and advocacy of laws that do nothing to solve the problem.

JPL - you are again trying to distract the conversation.  You posted “l this silly finger pointing at the NRA (which has zero power to pass laws)” and you were shown facts that this is blatantly false.  The NRA invests in politicians and campaigns precisely to have leverage over what laws are or are not passes. 

Once you were proven wrong, you try to change the topic.  This distraction is a typical NRA move that attempts to keep the conversation bouncing so that no actions can gain traction.

one of my favorite pictures that has made the rounds over the past couple of years of liberals sniveling about the big bad meanies at NRA….big fat guy holding up a sign that says “spoons made me fat”. In liberal land, no one is responsible for their own behavior…

Mitch, I can’t believe that a grown adult would argue about inanimate objects. You asked why we are not looking at banning swimming pools, because people do not take them out to kill people. Yes, I responded with all guns, because people use all types of guns to kill people. We are talking about murders not accidents.  Please stop misquoting me, I NEVER said that people should not have the right to own guns, but that not all people should have that right, as I stated before, I am a gun owner. The weapon that are used the highest kill rate are not assault rifles. That is because there are 300 million to 400 million civilian firearms in the US, but only 20 million to 30 million of those guns are assault-style rifles. If we were really worried about what kills people the most we would be talking about old age and cancer, that makes your statement a little bit crazy. The discussion is what has the highest kill rate per incident, usually by someone that shouldn’t have a gun at all. So, focus on what can kill the most at one time, not swimming pools. And you say I don’t want to have a rational discussion, but you want to talk about banning swimming pools? You are not thinking rationally when it comes to why mass murders happen, and how we can save lives. There were 372 mass shootings (4 or more killed) in the US in 2015, killing 475 people and wounding 1,870. Last year 345 mass shootings 590 killed, and a good amount of those shootings left no one dead, but many injured, another 45 so far this year. Do you not think this is a problem? Do you really want to argue about inanimate objects? Are you more intent on labeling things like the liberal LA Times than on the real problem? Can you make a statement without labeling when it’s something you’re not fond of? . Your definition of an assault rifle is different than what most people believe one is, AND it isn’t just a liberal/media thing, unless you consider Merriam-Webster liberal. Even Guns & Ammo put out a book, “Assault Firearms,” which said the firearms modeled after the new military rifles were “full of the hottest hardware available today.”
Stop lying about what I have said, if you want to have a rational discussion then you need to stop making these accusations such as “And pushing for more restrictions on law-abiding citizens shows you have a different agenda than saving lives, or not thinking rationally.” Once again, I have NEVER said that there should be laws against law-abiding citizens.  The laws need to be changed, an example, if you are on the do not fly list you shouldn’t be able to purchase a gun, this means that our government thinks they may be a threat to the US. I believe the WAPO report, I think you should take a look at the economy of the areas mentioned along with the crime rate.
And I will question that the left has torn down the culture. What makes video manufactures left? Most of the   kids I have seen playing these games are about as right as you can get. It is not the left that that says there should not be prayer and God in schools, it is the first amendment. As far as morality, that is not a class in school, it should be learned at home. As to why guns are no longer in schools, don’t you think it had something to do with shootings in schools?

Mitch, you sure did cherry pick the facts you wanted to give.  The payoffs are so easy to prove, you have to look at the money they put into campaign ads In the 2016 election, the NRA spent $11,438,118 to support Donald Trump. Between Trump and six Republican Senate candidates they spent $50.2. Talking just donations over a million $’s since in office,  McCain– $7.74 Burr- $6.99 Blunt –$4.55 ,  Gardner – $3.88, Tillis -$4.42, Rubio – 1.01, Hill – $1.09. Or we can do Virginia, Goodlatte -$136,424, Comstock - $124,301. If you did the math on unions why didn’t you do it on the NRA?  I can’t understand your rational between unions who give 60% to the left and the NRA that gives 100% to the right, it’s quite a discrepancy. The amount of money the NRA gives to politicians is small compared to the money they pour into their campaign expenditures such as advertising. In the last elections the NRA had $54,398,558 in outside spending, Planned Parenthood only $15,041,417 Those paid off pols don’t want to give up that monetary support. Mitch, hon, it’s not an emotional response, it is factual. You can try to make me out to be an emotional basket case, but it won’t work.
And Mitch, the facts in reality are that guns killed 10,182 last year and knives killed 1,604. I never said that there had never been guns in schools before, but they sure didn’t carry assault weapons.  Misquoting me won’t justify your made-up statements. So how rational are your statements?  The fact that I am not talking about other weapons is because all together they only total 4,888, and that includes hands and feet. Yeah, Trump has a way with word, just like a third grader. 

Great comments Mitch.  Always tough when you point out the glaring discrepancies.  Lady justice had the blindfold stripped off a long time ago.  Keep up the good work.

Hardworking American, stop playing the blame game, or at least get those who should really be blamed.  You need to actually find out about things before you talk about them. Like Uranium One, (a Canadian co.), they put an ex-FBI undercover (for 6 years) to try to make a case and came up with nothing! Why were they making such a deal about the sale of a company, they can’t ship any of the uranium out of the country. Foreign entities buy companies and own many companies here just as we do abroad. Please tell me about the corruption?
Donald Trump is doing what no other President has done, making a profit off the presidency. He is printing the presidential seal on products to sell in his golf shops, tees, mugs etc., totally against the law. Check US code 18 U.S. Code § 713, according to that he should be fined or imprisoned. As far as his campaign promises, he has filled a couple, but look at how racist his promises were. He would say anything to get applause. Do you think Mexico is going to pay for a wall, that was just to get his base riled up, he know that would never happen.
Excuse me, I pointed out what??? Don’t tell lies about me.  Of course, there is enough militia to protect us, the modern militia is called the National Guard! You need to stop blaming social media influence. People have a choice on what they do. Social media, video games are not holding guns to anyone’s heads, they are choices that an individual makes. People need to be held responsible for their decisions.
You talked about Hodgkinson that shot the republicans at baseball practice being liberal. That was not what the FBI said, they said he was “struggling in all kinds of different ways”. Her was a Sanders supporter with marital problems that was on the fringe. It’s not like all liberals are out there shooting republicans, can’t even think of another. Of course, he purchased those guns legally!
What rights are you willing to give up?

Amerigirl, davisB—where are your “facts” on the NRA’s buying politicians? It’s probably inconvenient to your emotional response that the NRA is powerful because it represents VOTERS who vote. Check out the top donors from any election cycle. Look at that, the NRA isn’t even in the top 50. But the unions, who collect money from workers against their will, are all over that list. And I did the math for you, feel free to check. 60% of that money goes to the liberal side. Keep digging, and you’ll find that Planned Parenthood spent 4 times the NRA ($4M to $1M) in political contributions for the 2016 campaign cycle.

And Amerigirl, you wanted facts, I gave you facts. Why haven’t you explained how the highly restrictive gun laws in DC are resulting in maybe 20 times the shooting homicide rate as Northern VA? Why no explanation for the sudden appearance of mass shootings in schools, when your ridiculous claim that there were no guns in schools since “pioneer days” has been proven false? Why no answer for why you are not ranting about knives, clubs, and hammers, which kill more people than rifles? No, you’re not looking for rational discussion. I didn’t vote for him, but the President sometimes has a way with words: “Sad!”

davisB, you’re right, but it was over 36 million, breaking their own record oncontributions to an individual.

Oh please quit talking about campaign contributions from anyone.  The corruption of the DNC, Hillary, Obama, Clapper, Comey, Uranium One pay for play, Fast and Furious, IRS targeting, Obama’s associations with Farrakhan, Wright and the Billion dollars, yes that’s billion with a B, the DNC spent on a flawed corrupt candidate who destroyed top secret information and lied about it.  (That would be Hillary Corrupt Clinton) Don’t forget the DNC funding attack research against Donald Trump’s campaign.  Donald Trump is doing what no other President has done, fulfilling his campaign promises which is why he was elected and he is doing it without full support from either side.  So put this garbage aside on this forum and stick to the issues.  No liberal has any place to speak on the idea of being supported by any special interest groups as Democrats wrote the book on corrupt money.  So let’s pull this back to the real issue.  Guns and Money.  This editorial accuses people defending guns over human life.  WRONG!  People put their hate and opinions over other human lives.  You see it everyday by the social media hate attacks.  The call to attack our leaders.  The liberal shooter that targeted the GOP on the ball field which oh, by the way, they would have been all dead if it were not for guns to protect them.  When you have American hating radicals supporting Obama stop for a moment and realize where this has come from.  Weak minds are empowered through hate games, glorification of terrorists, criminals and violating Federal immigration laws.  It is the lack of law abiding citizens that has caused all of this.  How many people obeyed the speed limit today?  That’s right, no one.  So keep the topic to point and on point.  As amerigirl pointed out guns were there constitutionally to arm the militia and now there is not enough “militia” out there to support and protect all of us.  Each one of us needs to understand where the real money comes from.  It is the social media giants that want to hook your 6 year old on Fakebook, oh sorry Facebook.  Use to be “hey I ran the 50 yard dash in a new record time!”  Now it’s, “yo dude I got the latest app, let’s go get high”.  Sad is the condition of the human condition.  I challenge each and everyone to look at the real problem.  Each of you know what it is.  Social Media hate and bullying.  Plain and simple.  I so enjoyed spending time with my mother and father at the dinner table or when we went out.  They both had phones as I did but we left them in the car and enjoyed the joy of sharing each other’s life.  Touch the youth with a good message and remember.  “For many to be safe and secure, few must give up their rights temporarily”.

Hardworkingamerican You know what, I was just out and I didn’t see a war zone, no attacks, infiltrations etc. You make it sound like we are in a war zone, but it’s just Loudoun County. If you wanted to know when the AR-15 came around why didn’t you just google it? And there you go lumping anyone that doesn’t think like you into 1 group, the liberals. Proud to be one by the way. Did you just find out what the AR stood for? But you don’t seem to know that the one you are talking about the military having is not the same model that is sold to the public. The current semi-automatic was popular until 2004 after the end of the federal assault weapons ban. Your ancient history has no place here. That is 13 years ago, not way back. If social media violence, video games and bullying are the cause of shootings why isn’t everyone who sees it shooting? Tell me 1 liberal hate group that advocates for violence, bet you can’t. My guess is that you talk a lot but don’t listen much, it is just liberals that worry and they aren’t against the AR-15 in particular, but against assault weapons, that just is the most popular one. There is a reason that hate crimes are on the rise, they jumped 86 percent in the first quarter of 2017. You say there are liberal hate groups??? Do you defend the KKK, or ult-right? Do you see liberal groups walking around imitating Hitler chanting phrases that Nazi used? Give me a break.

jpl - another NRA lie - that they are powerless when it comes to laws- the NRA threatens lawmakers if they don’t score a 100% on the gun scale and they give millions to those that do - something like $30 million to get Trump elected - the NRA is absolutely about power and controlling our govt.

Plegend That’s about the silliest thing I’ve ever heard, the NRA has zero power – hahaha. They have a lot of power through all the politicians they have bought. You can try to blame everyone else, parents, the media etc. Guns have not always been around, the very 1st murder didn’t happen with a gun according to the bible. But even later there were no weapons that could shoot hundreds of rounds at a time and easily be reloaded with another high capacity magazine. It’s time for us all to take a little bit of responsibility for the problem and stop blaming it on everything else. We are the ones that elect representatives that do little for those with mental conditions, keep schools substandard in poor and rural areas and not breaking the cycle, allow high capacity weapons to be purchased by the public. What is plain and simple is that those with money are too greedy to care. If you really think it is the media then you should be proactive and let them know how you feel

Great comment amerigirl on militia and being ready if we were attacked from a foreign entity.  Well wake up everyone, we are being attacked from foreign entities!  They roam our streets infiltrate our schools, recruit our children and hide behind liberal sanctuary cities that violate federal laws.  Since there are not enough “militia” to protect us all it’s time we took matters into our own hands.  As pointed out so many times in these discussions guns have been around a long time.  Anyone know when the AR-15 came into being?  Liberals use the AR-15 as a catch-all for any gun that someone uses in the act of doing something horrible or bad.  Well listen and learn.  AR stands for ArmaLite Rifle, it’s a trade-mark name.  ArmaLite has been around since 1954, unlike very few of us that comment on these forums.  In 1956 the AR-5 was designed and able to work wet and float which saved so many lives of military that found themselves in those situations.  So the AR-15 has it’s roots from way back meaning that it has been around for a long time.  School shootings have not.  As pointed out by so many, including myself, social media violence, liberal hate vocals, actors and actresses preaching violence against our President thus influencing weak young minds, video games that show brains splatting all over as they cheer and clap at their death tolls, calls to “burn down the White House”, bullying that happens everyday with no consequences…ok I will stop as there is not enough space to continue.  Just remember…“For many to be safe and secure, few must give up their rights temporarily”.

all this silly finger pointing at the NRA (which has zero power to pass laws) and no mention of the problem within our culture that is to blame for all of this violence: poor parenting, lack of responsibility, lowering the bar of common decency, and a media that promotes all of the above and seeks villains in conservative America. No substantive discussion about solving this issue will ever happen without an initial acknowledgement that standards of acceptable behavior have been lowered. Guns have always been around, mass shootings are what’s new. So, something else is to blame: a culture and media that reward bad behavior. Plain and simple.

Amerigirl, I’m glad you agree that inanimate objects don’t kill people. Now that we have that settled, we’re back to the original point, which was why are we not looking at banning swimming pools, in which children die? What about knives, hammers, clubs, all of which kill more people than rifles (I said this earlier, and you responded with stats on ALL guns. Sure, you use numbers occasionally, but that is not an honest use of them.).

Why does the intent of a maniac breaking the law to misuse a firearm matter? Are the people less dead from drowning? If you take away the right to own a swimming pool, no one will die. No one will be raped. No one will be robbed. If you take away the right to own firearms, people will die, be raped, be robbed. (No one knows exactly, but if you search for even the liberal LA Times article on this they have a low number of 67,000 annual uses of guns for defense.) My point is, and was, that if we were really concerned about people dying, we would be talking about things that kill the most. AR-15’s are not even close to that. So by focusing on something that doesn’t solve the problem of what is killing the most people, more people will die. And shows you have a different agenda than saving lives, or not thinking rationally.

Yes, you can find people that have bought into the liberal/media pushed definition of assault weapon. The Army ought to know what one is, I think. And changing a grip, or the stock, doesn’t change the fundamental nature of a rifle. The characteristic that makes it an assault weapon is automatic fire. It is irrational to argue that banning rifles with a pistol grip is going to save lives. So making that argument shows you have a different agenda than saving lives, or not thinking rationally.

Google DC area homicides (WaPo), and drill down to the jurisdictions to see how many shooting deaths there were in 2017. 13 in all of VA jurisdictions (Fairfax County alone has twice the population of DC). 89 in DC! Seven times the number in much higher population VA. How can this be, when DC is far more restrictive on gun ownership? (Please don’t say it’s because of loose gun laws in Virginia, unless you can explain how the guns know to cause shootings in DC but not in VA.) The answer, for those willing to face reality, is not tightening the gun laws. And pushing for more restrictions on law-abiding citizens shows you have a different agenda than saving lives, or not thinking rationally.

You want to attack my claim that the left has torn down the culture? You say that first-person amoral shooter/killer games like GTA have no impact on kids, music glorifying treating women as whores and killing cops has no effect. Removing prayer and the mention of God from schools has no effect. Teaching people that their very existence is a random accident and there is no moral authority in the universe has no effect. OK, back to one of my original questions. If you have read the comments here you’ve seen personal testimony of what you can easily find on Google. Guns on school campuses was a “thing” until very recently. Please explain why these kinds of shootings were not happening until the last couple decades—and much more now that schools are “gun free zones.” That is the rational discussion we are not having.

Well as usual the author and so many like Ashburn Farm, (so exhausting), Amerigirl and others all are missing the true facts.  So again, let me educate each of you who just take the cheap way out and blame Fox News and conservatives.  Liberals are the party of slavery, check your history.  So onto the real issue.  The problem is liberal social media and the radical left that cheers people who want to “burn down the White House” and tweet pictures of mock up assassinations of our President who has accomplished more in his first year than Sharia law loving Obama ever did.  People in power have security details that are armed to the hilt.  Don’t care what party they associate themselves with, they will never give up their rights to have guns surrounding them in the form of security.  When social media is cheered as it promotes violence and lets not forget Rolling Stone glorifying the Boston bomber, it is sick society that is the true weapon of choice.  The law enforcement officers that are under paid and over worked can in no way shape and form protect us.  Not possible!  That said if you want to stop crime and killings get the criminals off the street!  That means enforcing laws!  Pass legislation that makes tweeting threats of violence and glorification of violent comments a crime and hunt these people down.  This is what fell through the gaping crack in Florida.  Put school safety first as opposed to making it the step child it has been made for so long.  Don’t comment!  I know first hand and you do not, it has been that way.  Now it takes dead bodies for people to finally wake up?  Where were all of you when security officers at schools were begging for more resources 13 to 15 years ago?  Where were you?  The Florida tragedy is a product of incompetence.  FBI is too busy hunting down fake Russian collusion stories or covering up their incompetence as a know sicko bragged about being the next school shooter.  You go ahead and quote all the facts (your facts) you want, but bottom line is, social media is the worst weapon that has ever existed.  It hates, it bullies without consequences, it rots people’s brains, it contaminates minds that are not equipped yet to handle the daily threats that flood the social airways.  Go ahead, take all the guns away.  Fine…but you better damn well take them away from everyone!!  “For many to be safe and secure few must give up their rights temporarily”.

Woman is female - really?  Your logic is flawed.  Since the U.S. government has nuclear and biological weapons, you really believe that citizens have a constiutional right to own those as well?  You also speak of priorities… I agree, I think far more students will be successful in school if they were properly fed, so I’d rather spend my tax dollars feeding students when they are trying to learn to better themselves than the cost of arming teachers, including the cost of liability insurance which should be required for all those who have permits to carry guns off their property.

Agree with drttp24.. tighten background check requirements to keep those who are taking such medications from being able to acquire guns. Not sure how HIPA can be modified to allow such, but where there is a will (and there clearly is a will by our society to solve this problem) there is a way.

agree with those who point out that guns don’t kill people, people kill people….
same goes with cars…. cars don’t kill people, drivers kill people…
So require anyone wishing to purchase as well as carry a gun off their property, to prove they are licensed, i.e., know how to operate a gun and pass a background check conducted on a periodic basis?

Yes criminals will still be able to get guns, but some restrictions such as these and others that are being suggested have a strong potential to reduce deaths and yet still protect citizens 2nd Amendment rights. Safety training has drastically reduced workplace injuries, so instituting requisite gun safety training can similiarly reduce gun-related tragedies.

It is reasonable to ask NRA to simply be willing to come to the table. Why? If for no other reason than because your fellow citizens and neighbors are asking you to do so.

Woman is female, absolutely not! Nowhere in the second amendment does it say you have the right to any type of arms. You can’t make up your own version of the Constitution. Capisce? It says that you have the right to bear arms, not any type of arms you want. Since the Supreme Court did not make a determination on weapons that was left to the states because that’s how the law works.
If you go with the “well regulated militia” you will also find that a militia is to be trained and answers to the President. Since the Constitution was written state-based militia organizations were eventually incorporated into the federal military structure. Our militia is the National Guard. Your opinion of what the writers & signers of the Bill of Rights intended is on the fringe. It is generally recognized that the writer’s intent was to have state militias ready to be called up if the US was to be attacked by a foreign entity.

amerigirl, you asked: if hunters needed “high capacity semi-automatic” rifles.

No, they don’t. But that’s not what the 2nd Amendment was written for. There is no mention of hunting in the 2nd Amendment, and that’s not what the writers & signers of the Bill of Rights intended. I don’t hunt.

American citizens have a CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT to own whatever kinds of weapons the police or other government agencies could use against them. Capisce?

Mike, if we didn’t have to worry about all these nut cases trying to kill people they might still be able to have hunt and target clubs. Though someone may not be dissuaded from a killing spree they wouldn’t be as able to cause as much carnage, and the police wouldn’t be outgunned. The thing with alcohol is that there are laws to protect people, but they are not always followed. The one good thing I can say about millenniums in general is that they are more apt to have a designated driver with them than my age group did back in our younger days. As a hunter, you should be able to use a gun if that is what you prefer, but isn’t a regular rifle like a .30-30 more effective? Do you think it is necessary or even warranted to have a high capacity semi-automatic?

amerigirl - unfortunately trolls don’t care what facts you share, although i agree w/ ashburn resident about credit for trying

like when loudoun gop explains away the fact that comstock’s car was parked illegally in handicapped striped lines area @ event in loudoun the other night -

“a van would have trouble opening a door”  - since when do vans open doors by themselves?

Mitch, I am being very rational and factual. Would you prefer I say that owners of swimming pools don’t hunt down and try to kill as many as possible using their pools? Semantics Why would you not call an AR-15 an assault weapon? It is not the army’s definition but Dictionary.com defines “assault weapon” as “any of various automatic and semiautomatic military firearms utilizing an intermediate-power cartridge, designed for individual use. It been the weapon used in many of the largest mass shootings in the United States, and is often legally classified as an assault weapon.  ” Merriam-Webster’s online definition is “any of various automatic or semiautomatic firearms; especially: assault rifle.” It defined the rifle type of assault weapon as a semiautomatic firearm with the ability to accept a detachable magazine and two or more of the following: a folding or telescoping stock. a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon. The AR-15s was banned by the Federal Assault Weapons Ban from 1994 to 2004. Then you have the Sig Sauer MCX, used in Orlando which is actually marketed as an assault weapon.
When you make irrational comments like “cultural disasters brought by liberals” and “murder rates highest in places where the gun laws are strictest” that are not based in reality and blaming everything from the left glorifies killing, to the left taking morals our of schools, I call that a rant.  Then you said “you won’t deal with reality and discuss it honestly.” You have not been honest in those statements. You don’t back up anything you say with facts. 
Again, with the semantics, everyone knows inanimate objects don’t act on their own. But repeatedly saying that guns don’t kill is stupid. Everyone knows that someone is operating it. You have overused this point and having a discussion on what is an inanimate object when you know that the use of it is implied is a ridiculous waste of time.

Mitch - no one has ever suggested that guns act on their own except for the NRA.  This is simply a figure of speech, but you know that.  By pushing this the only important talking point, you totally ignore the issues - and you do this to confuse the conversation - can you and the others stop?

When I was in junior high school, I was on the hunt club and brought my Remington 20 Gage shotgun to school, along with the other members, on several occasions to hunt with the vice principle after school.  It truly is amazing to think that this was a regular occurrence, in Montgomery County MD.  Imagine, no one even thinking twice about a 7th grader boarding a school bus with a shotgun (it was in a case) and walking around with it.  No one thought I was going to shoot the place up, they assumed i was on the hunt club and was hunting after school!  Times have changed, but i have a hard time believing someone intent on mass killing would be dissuaded from doing so because AR15’s are illegal. Regarding design, every handgun every designed is intended to kill people, cause you sure cant hunt with them!  I don’t like to use any analogy to driving for one reason, it is a privilege issued by the state, not a constitutional right.  However, banning alcohol would prevent DWI right? As a long time hunter and responsible gun owner, I don’t like the idea of being punished for what someone else did.  Thoughts?

Amergirl, and everyone else, this is exactly why we can’t have a rational discussion on issues. You throw out emotional opinions, to oppose logic and facts. I answered your questions, and showed the ridiculousness of your point that evil guns are hunting people down. You now run away to other emotional claims—I’d be happy to rationally discuss those as well, but that isn’t something you seem to be open to.

The current rally cry is to ban “assault weapons.” The media knows, and you know, AR-15s are not assault weapons and can’t harm anyone by themselves. If rational discussion was desired, they/you wouldn’t keep lying about every aspect of this issue to sway the public towards a specific agenda of taking guns away from law-abiding citizens.

You called me out for a “rant” ... but the only ones ranting are you and other liberals. You can’t solve a problem if you won’t deal with reality and discuss it honestly. And when you get caught ranting about things that are not real—like guns acting on their own—admit your error, and have a rational discussion.

Amerigirl - You are my hero!  I commend you for the time and effort you expend responding to the right wing nuts (most of whom I suspect are FOX news watching older white men) who post here.  I post occasionally but find it exhausting trying to reason with these types.  Especially the ones I am unfortunately related to.

Hahahaa hahahahahah wow what a joke of an editorial. I uss yalls website strictly for comedy and your physical paper for fire starter and target practice with MY AR-15 LOL. So bias and liberal lol never going to happen bud. From these dead hands.

Amerigirl, you said, “The problem being that they can discharge more bullets than other weapons.”

What do you mean by “discharge more bullets”? Do you mean at one time (per trigger squeeze)? Or in succession (# of bullets in the magazine)?

A national gun registry would be unconstitutional—pretty much every gun owner in America would be against it. I’m not an NRA member, but I’m against a national gun registry.

“Assault weapon” is a vague term. If you are talking about semi-automatic rifles with certain kinds of accessories, like a folding stock and a pistol grip, there are millions. Hundreds of thousands of rifles are manufactured in America for domestic use every year, and just because someone buys one without those accessories, that doesn’t mean he or she can’t add them later.

Do you know how many deaths per year are caused by someone shooting a rifle? ANY kind of rifle?

Like 400. Maybe. 400 deaths per year out of MILLIONS, maybe even 10s of millions, of rifles privately owned.

When it comes to premature deaths, especially among young people, I don’t think banning rifles is where we need to focus. Vehicular safety, suicide prevention, and gang violence seem to be more important. FAR MORE IMPORTANT.

Priorities, people.

Woman, The NRA has opposed any type of national gun registry so there is really no way of knowing how many “assault weapons “are out there. They claim it is a roadmap to confiscating guns. The NRA estimates that between 8.5 million and 15 million assault rifles are in circulation based on manufacturer data. The problem being that they can discharge more bullets than other weapons, so more people die and are injured per incident. Deaths alone Parkland-17, Texas First Baptist Church – 26, Las Vegas Strip 58, Orlando nightclub massacre – 49, San Bernardino – 14, Sandy Hook Elementary -27, Aurora -12, which seems less than the others until you consider that 58 more were injured from gun fire. As far as the question on 9mm or handguns there is little up to date info, especially since they are a common suicide weapon. That was the best I could find, maybe someone else has more info.

Mitch, If you want to check out the other weapons that are used to viciously kill others you can check out the FBI’s UCR table, or their crime stats. The gun rate is about 5.7 times higher than with a knife. Swimming pool is not listed. The most recent says Firearms were used in 71.5 percent of the nation’s murders.
What makes you think that it is the left that is creating all the movies, music glorifying violence, and violent first-person-shooter games desensitize people to violence? Tell me how the left is taking morals out of school! Everyone I know is anti-bullying, pro respect, and caring towards others. No one pushes abortion, they push for the right for a woman to make her own decision. That is not an easy choice for a woman. What if a doctor recommends that she consider one because it could kill her, or the child won’t live outside the womb, or if she is raped, shouldn’t she have that choice? It’s much easier for a man to make that sort of remark.
Did they carry assault style weapons to school? Did they have armor piercing bullets?

Amerigirl, you show me a gun that “viciously hunt[s] down human beings with the intent of taking the most lives possible,” then I’ll show you a swimming pool that does. Maybe you believe guns act by themselves because you were given fake news.

Then maybe we could have a conversation about all the things that PEOPLE use to viciously kill others more than they use rifles—like knives, clubs, and hammers. You prove my point exactly. The issue is WHAT PEOPLE DO, not what an inanimate object does.

Yes, the left glorifies killing. If you are denying that all the movies, music glorifying violence, and violent first-person-shooter games desensitize people to violence, you are deluded. Taking morals our of schools. Devaluing life through pushing abortion. Those are things that affect what people DO. Pushing for better tools—in this case a gun—for use in good purposes does not incite people to violence or desensitize them to it.

As for guns in schools, unless you call the 1950’s/60’s pioneer days, it wasn’t that long ago.

Does anyone have the numbers on rifles and murder rates? How many rifles that would be considered “assault weapons” are owned privately in America? How many murders per year are committed with these privately-owned rifles? And how does this rate compare to the rate of murders w/9mm handgun per privately owned 9mm handgun?

Mitch, can you tell me how where your right sided rant is coming from? Swimming pools and motorcycles don’t viciously hunt down human beings with the intent of taking the most lives possible. You really think it has anything to do with the lefts cultural? Not the right who is promoting gun use, the bigger the better? When and where did “and kids brought them to school”. Unless you are talking pioneer days I really have to hear your explanation. WRONG, wrong, wrong, the murder rates are LOWEST in states that have strict gun laws, such s CA, NJ, Mass, NY, Conn, HI, and MD. All of this can be easily fact checked. Maybe you don’t understand why rules and regs work because you were given fake news.

Dulles9, lean to the right much? I guess it’s a good thing the NRA put out their talking points list. Have you read how our Va House is manipulating the situation? Freitas reached back to the 1960’s to try to blame it on Planned Parenthood. Wright blamed it on school systems not teaching about God (separation of church and state?) Plum comparing it to segregation. All anyone has to do is look at any of the reputable studies that have been done to find that gun control saves lives, and that for every percentage of guns sold in any state the amount of gun deaths by gun go up that same percent. The US Constitution does not recognize any God given right. It does recognize inalienable rights. The second amendment does not say you have the right to any type of gun, which is why you cannot own a fully automatic military weapon, grenade launcher etc. Texting kills kids, so does cancer, but neither has the ability to have a large capacity magazine to cause the most damage. Texting and cancer do not stalk down and kill with malice. You call for partisan politics right after you have spouted off your right-wing agenda. Not a NRA backer but am a gun owner.

It is wrong to say the LTM does not care about kids. I’m sure they do. The problem is LTM puts their liberal bias ahead of logic and our children’s safety. This crisis will only be solved with a multi-prong approach.
1. If you want to increase the age to purchase a firearm to 21 fine.
2. Background checks should be expanded to include those taking anti-depressants and anti-psychotic drugs.
People do not understand the massive amount of young people taking these medications.
3. You need to arm selected teachers that are trained.
4. Establish an Air Marshall like program. Many ex-military and police would likely donate their time.
The LTM answer is to ban guns. It is short sighted and defines their bias.
Be the sheep or be the sheep dog.
You decide.

This editorial is the type of illogical, straw man arguments the left-leaning media offers in hopes of swaying our youth, the disengaged and/or undereducated.
“Defending guns over human life is unconscionable”. No one is defending guns because, as inanimate objects,  guns don’t require defense.  We defend the US Constitution/Bill of Rights which through its very ratification recognized the God given and inalienable rights of all US citizens.
Maybe we should ban cell phones since, on average, 11 teenagers die every day while texting and driving? Or stated another way, defending cell phones over human life is unconscionable. Banning cell phones could save thousands more lives and would be much easier to enact since the right to own cell phones is not an enumerated, Constitutionally-protected right.
Let’s stop the hysterics and partisan politics and come together to face these challenges within the context of a well-informed, respectful and honest discussion.
A non-gun owning, non-member of the NRA .

You are right, it doesn’t take enlightenment to link shootings to gun reform. It takes enlightenment to actually look for the real causes of the shootings and not jump on knee-jerk answers that have no bearing on the solution.

It’s blatantly obvious that LTM is not really concerned about “the children.” Where are the editorials saying “defending swimming pools over human life is unconscionable.” “Banning motorcycles could save lives.”

No, the media won’t ask the the real questions, because the real causes of this are more likely related to the cultural disasters brought by liberals. Let’s try these questions: A few decades ago, kids and adults had even more access to guns, and kids brought them to school. Why no mass shootings, if guns were the issue? Even more recently, the idea of someone—other than terrorists in the Middle East—just gunning down innocents was unheard of. What changed to make that a regular event? In the past decade, millions more guns—including AR-15s—have been bought in America. Yet murder rate went down. Why, if guns are the problem? Why are the murder rates highest in places where the gun laws are strictest? Hundreds of children die each year in swimming pools, an unnecessary item not protected explicitly by the Constitution. Why no calls to ban THEM?

You have a pre-determined answer to the shootings in mind, and it is control of those not as “smart as you.” You won’t ask the real questions, because real answers are not the goal.

Should we spend money on guns, or books, paper and pencils? I would rather have my tax dollars go to the books, paper, and pencils.

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