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Mass Shootings...contd....of course (3)

This is a continuation of the topic Mass Shootings...contd.....

Pro and Con

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Mar 10, 8:03am Top

California: three mental health workers taken hostage and killed as was the gunman. PTSD... Details shortly. Time to re-post the checklist?

Edited: Mar 10, 8:15am Top

On the BBC World Service today they were interviewing some US country and western singer. He was speaking of how the country and western music industry has generally been supportive of the NRA narrative but he is now one of thos beginning to speak out, believing as he does that the majority of US gun owners do not support the ideological position of the NRA. He said it has nothing to do with repealing the 2nd Amendment, as he owns guns himself, but he focused in on the "well regulated" part of that amendment - by insisting that guns be "well regulated" you are actually supporting, not undermining, the amendment. He also believes that there is no need for assault weapons - he reckons that whatever most people need to do with guns (including sporting, hunting and defending one's family from intruders) can equally well be done with rifle, shotgun or pistol. He also pointed out how risky it is for a country and western figure to go up against the right wing - he mentioned some band called the Dixie Chicks or something who had gone against the right wing a few years ago and had more or less been hounded out of business.

Edited: Mar 10, 9:06am Top

>2 johnthefireman: Yes. The Dixie Chicks took on the G.W. Bush administration. They paid dearly for it with their fan base, which was more interested in hearing this:


(And oddly enough, that one made the rotation for a 4th of July celebration I attended with a friend in Hamden, CT -- a short drive from the Yale campus -- ca. 2004)

Mar 10, 9:20am Top

>2 johnthefireman: The Dixie Chicks became pariahs in the CW world after speaking out against Bush and the Iraq war at a concert in England. The speaking out was bad enough, but to do it outside the US was unforgivable to a lot of CW fans and the "you're with us or against us" crowd.


As far as the "well regulated" part of the 2nd Amendment, the hard core gun nut sees that as something that "doesn't mean" what more reasonable people think it does.

Edited: Mar 10, 9:29am Top

The NRA has a website for supportive country music artists and fans....and the NRA along with these artists do a lot to promote each other. I think the Vegas concert attack changed a few minds within that community of people but it's a process. It's the music of choice for conservatives with very few exceptions. The sad truth is there are so many guns out here and such easy access to them and shitloads of unhappy individuals that even with lots of regulatory enactment of law and real enforcement these kind of acts are going to be happening for a while--which is not reason to not do them--just saying that these events are going to continue for a while though. Not doing anything only exacerbates everything further into the future.

Edited: Mar 12, 5:22am Top

Re the Dixie Chicks....

I really liked their music, but I stopped listening to them after their comments on Bush. While they certainly have a right to express their opinion, I didn't like that they attacked the man rather than his policies in a foreign venue. I still won't listen to the Dixie Chicks even if I thought the Iraq war was a mistake.

I had the same issue with conservative Americans attacking Obama. Attack his policies, okay, but not the man. And attacking Michelle Obama was just wrong. It's also hypocritical that the same people who attacked Obama get upset when Trump is attacked.

I support Trump only so far as he is the elected official but I vehemently disagree with his policies and communications methods. And that's just about the nicest way I can put it.

Mar 12, 11:33am Top

Trump swayed by NRA's 30 million reasons to not raise minimum age to buy firearms...

Trump drops calls to raise guns age limit
March 12, 2018

But he is moving ahead with his controversial proposal to provide firearms training to school employees.

The president tweeted that there was not much political support for raising the minimum age on weapons sales.

Americans must be 18 to buy a rifle or shotgun and 21 to buy a handgun off licensed dealers under federal law.

Unlicensed sales, such as those at gun shows, are federally allowed at any age for rifles and shotguns, and 18 for handguns, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

...The White House said a new federal commission on school safety would examine the age limit issue.

But Mr Trump tweeted on Monday: "On 18 to 21 Age Limits, watching court cases and rulings before acting.

...As well as setting up the new committee (on school safety chaired by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos), it proposes to:

Fund programmes to train school staff to use firearms

Encourage military veterans and retired police officers to become teachers

Improve background and mental health checks

...Mr Trump has come under pressure from the country's main gun lobby, the National Rifle Association (NRA), not to change existing legislation...


Mar 12, 12:26pm Top

Science pinpoints some genetic association with absence of empathy: autism is negatively linked to empathy, but genes associated with empathy slightly increase the risk for schizophrenia and anorexia nervosa, and extraversion(?).

Genes contribute only a fraction of the answer: hormones, environment and society also important, though imperfectly understood. (I was reminded of the neuroscientist who discovered his brain scan showed psychopathic profile of serial killers--https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/the-neuroscientist-who-discovered-he-was-a-psychopath-180947814/ Obviously, something in his background countered the biological tendencies!)

Human Empathy Linked with Genetic Variation
March 12, 2018

...A genome-wide association study (GWAS) led by scientists at the University of Cambridge, U.K., found that about 10% of variability in self-reported empathy is associated with genetic factors. The study, involving more than 46,000 volunteers identified a link between genes associated with lower self-reported empathy and an increased risk of autism, while genes associated positively with empathy slightly increased the risk for schizophrenia and anorexia nervosa. The study data also indicated that while women are generally more empathetic than men, gender differences in empathy aren’t genetic, which implies roles for biological factors such as hormones and/or environmental and societal influences in sex-related differences.

...This is an important step toward understanding the role that genetics plays in empathy,” adds co-corresponding author Varun Warrier at the University of Cambridge. “But since only a tenth of the variation in the degree of empathy between individuals is down to genetics, it is equally important to understand the nongenetic factors."...



Varun Warrier et al. 2018. Genome-wide analyses of self-reported empathy: correlations with autism, schizophrenia, and anorexia nervosa. Translational Psychiatry. Volume 8, Article number: 35 (2018) doi:10.1038/s41398-017-0082-6 https://www.nature.com/articles/s41398-017-0082-6

Abstract...As predicted, based on earlier work, we confirmed a significant female advantage on the EQ (Empathy Quotient). We identified similar SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/primer/genomicresearch/snp) heritability and high genetic correlation between the sexes. Also, as predicted, we identified a significant negative genetic correlation between autism and the EQ. We also identified a significant positive genetic correlation between the EQ and risk for schizophrenia, risk for anorexia nervosa, and extraversion . This is the first GWAS (genome-wide association study) of self-reported empathy. The results suggest that the genetic variations associated with empathy also play a role in psychiatric conditions and psychological traits.

Introduction...Differences in various fractions of empathy have been observed in several psychiatric conditions including autism, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and major depressive disorder. Two major fractions of empathy include affective empathy (the drive to respond to another’s mental state with an appropriate emotion) and cognitive empathy (the ability to recognize another’s mental state). These differences vary between psychiatric conditions: for example, individuals with schizophrenia are more likely to report higher personal distress and emotional contagion, whereas individuals with autism are likely to show difficulties with cognitive empathy but not affective empathy. These may reflect causal risk mechanisms where alterations in empathy contribute to higher risk for developing a psychiatric condition. Equally, differences in empathy may also be due to the presence of a psychiatric condition, which may not allow individuals to understand and respond to another person’s mental state effectively.

Whilst empathy is clearly shaped by early experience, parenting, and other social factors, different lines of evidence suggest that empathy is partly biological. Empathy is modestly heritable (approximately a third of the variance is heritable), and a few candidate gene association studies have investigated the role of various genes in empathy. In addition, several studies have identified a role for the oxytocinergic and the foetal testosterone systems in modulating empathy8. Neuroimaging studies have identified distinct brain regions implicated in different aspects of empathy including the amygdala and the ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Empathy also shows a marked sex difference: females, on average, score higher on different measures of empathy. A longitudinal study suggests that this female advantage grows larger with age. Sex differences in the mind arise from a combination of innate biological differences, cultural, and environmental differences. Studies in infant humans have identified sex differences in the developmental precursors to empathy, such as neonatal preferences to faces over objects when environmental and cultural influences are minimal, lending support to the idea that sex differences in empathy are at least partly biological....


Mar 13, 6:50am Top

8 contd. Given importance of environment in expression of genetic tendencies, I thought of two studies that schools might consider. (Will ETA if I come across them again.)

1. Full spectrum light.
Time lapse photography of a classroom under full-spectrum v regular lights was remarkable in that the full-spectrum lit class was noticeably calmer--less "jumpy". Seems like there is tendency these days to reduce window size (= save energy) and limit time outside (recess)?

2. Vitamins & minerals
British prisoners fed more vitamins and minerals had significantly fewer altercations and incidents.
More nutritious school lunches could help teaching environment? (Ketchup is NOT a vegetable! ;-)

Mar 13, 11:21am Top

>9 margd: Interesting about lighting conditions. Purely anecdotal, but my elementary school had very tall windows in all but two of the classrooms. The third grade classes were held in dreary, windowless rooms in the basement. We had been good children until that year but Miss Smith could not control the class.

Mar 14, 3:35am Top

Students injured when Monterey County (CA) teacher accidentally fires handgun in class
Jason Green | March 13, 2018

...Dennis Alexander, a reserve police officer for the Sand City Police Department and a Seaside councilman...was teaching a gun safety course as part of his administration of justice class when he fired a single shot from a semi-automatic handgun into the ceiling

Three students were injured, including a 17-year-old boy who was hit in the neck by debris or a fragment after the bullet ricocheted off the ceiling...The boy was not seriously injured and classes resumed, the Herald reported.

...Alexander has taught the course in the past, but (Seaside police Chief Abdul D. Pridgen) said he did not know if the reserve officer had ever brought a loaded firearm to the school before...


Mar 15, 5:42am Top

I was very proud of American students yesterday for peacefully protesting. One quote I heard said something like, "If adults won't do it, we will!" I haven't seen this level of activism in young people since the 60s and 70s.

Edited: Mar 15, 11:54am Top

>8 margd: You seem to misunderstand what psychopathy is. It is not a lust to harm others. It is simply a complete absence of empathy - the ability to feel an emotional response to the experiences of others. For a psychopath the destruction of a book and the destruction of a person have the same emotional content - zero. They may or may not feel that destruction as a loss, but it does not trigger any reaction of empathy with how that person (or their loved ones) felt.

I remember the context of that neurological study that you referenced. It estimated that under 10% of psychopaths ever come to the attention of law enforcement authorities. In contrast, most CEOs of successful companies score high on tests for psychopathy, since it enables them to take decisions that profit them, but harm employees, with complete ruthlessness.

A psychopath has no particular disposition towards violence. It is simply that if other factors cause a situation where violence seems a good option, appeals to "common humanity" mean nothing. Only rationalisations with regard to probable risk to themselves (of prison, of retribution etc.) have any validity.

Most intelligent psychopaths have extremely successful, legal, careers, as they ruthlessly climb the ladder in their chosen field. It is only when combined with either poor impulse control or sufficient hubris that they consider themselves above the law that it results in criminal behaviour.

Lack of empathy is a very bad thing. But I would be very wary of any implication that we should go down the route of aiming to medicalise and treat character traits, even negative ones. It is surely better to recognise that a significant number of people are genetically wired that way, and interact with them appropriately.

The mass shootings this thread is about are unlikely to have been committed by psychopaths. The shooters seem to be motivated by an awareness of the feelings of others - and a desire that they should feel pain and fear.

ETA: I should not have tried to second-guess situations where the motives are known. Of course is possible for a psychopath to commit mass murder (e.g. if they get a power thrill from it, or if they have decided that a certain number of dead bodies will add impact to their cause); but the troubled teen who is extremely unhappy, and therefore wants to make others unhappy in return, is basing their impulse on an understanding of others' feelings. A psychopath does not comprehend that other people have feelings in the same way that they do.

Mar 15, 8:22am Top

>14 Guanhumara: Interesting. Thanks for that info.

Rand report looked at effects of gun policies in the US--go to website(s) to view graphics.
JAMA study found that gun violence research funding was only 1.6 percent of what would be expected, given the number of people that die from guns each year...

What we do and don’t know about how to prevent gun violence
Lack of research makes it hard to determine laws’ effect on saving lives
Rachel Ehrenberg | March 9, 2018

...the biggest takeaways:

1. There’s not enough data to show what would prevent mass shootings.(https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/mass-shootings.html)...

2. Keeping guns out of the hands of kids is good policy....solid evidence that these laws reduce unintentional firearm injuries and deaths among children... some evidence these laws also reduce adult unintentional firearm injuries and deaths. (https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/child-access-prevention.html)...

3. Gun policies can decrease the number of suicides. (https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/suicide.html)...

4. Background checks can work...moderate evidence that these laws can reduce the number of firearm homicides and suicides....limited evidence that background checks reduce violent crime and homicides in general. (https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/background-checks.html)...

5. Keeping guns out of the hands of the mentally ill has mixed effects...limited evidence that these laws can reduce the number of suicides...slightly stronger proof that these laws reduce the amount of violent crime in general. (https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/mental-illness-prohibitions.html)...

6. Allowing people to carry concealed guns ups gun violence...limited evidence that laws that guarantee a right to carry increase unintentional firearm injuries among adults and increase violent crime. (https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/concealed-carry.html)...

7. Saying it’s OK to “stand your ground” can also lead to gun violence...moderate evidence that laws that let people claim self-defense even if they don’t try to retreat from a perceived threat lead to an uptick in homicide rates. (https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/stand-your-ground.html)...

The analysts found little or no research on the impact of other policies, including gun-free zones, firearm sales reporting requirements and bans on assault weapons.

...federal directives... for the past two decades, have forbidden the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from “advocating or promoting gun control” and slashed its funding.

...Similar language was added to the funding bill for the National Institutes of Health in 2012 and the end result is today the U.S. government invests very little in research on firearms and public health (https://www.sciencenews.org/article/gun-research-faces-roadblocks-and-dearth-data). A recent JAMA study comparing spending on leading causes of mortality, such as cancer, malnutrition and hypertension, found that gun violence research funding was only 1.6 percent of what would be expected, given the number of people that die from guns each year. The same analysis looked at the volume of scientific papers published for each cause of death and, relative to mortality rates, guns were the least researched....


A. R. Morral et al. The science of gun policy: A critical synthesis of research evidence on the effects of gun policies in the United States. The RAND Corporation, published online March 2, 2018. (https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR2088.html)

D. E. Stark and N. H. Shah. Funding and publication of research on gun violence and other leading causes of death. JAMA. Vol. 317, January 3, 2017, p. 84. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.16215 (https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2595514)

Further Reading

M. Rosen. Gun research faces roadblocks and a dearth of data. Science News. Vol. 189, May 14, 2016, p.16. (https://www.sciencenews.org/article/gun-research-faces-roadblocks-and-dearth-data)

M. Rosen. Tough gun laws in Australia eliminate mass shootings. Science News Online, June 22, 2016. (https://www.sciencenews.org/article/tough-gun-laws-australia-eliminate-mass-shootings)


Mar 15, 11:06am Top

I think there are several, relatively easy steps we could take to decrease gun violence in America.

1. Institute mandatory waiting periods to buy any firearm. (Presently in Maryland, there's only a waiting period for handguns).

2. Institute background checks for all firearms. (Again, only required for handguns in MD).

3. Ban high-capacity magazines and bump stocks

4. Require mandatory gun safety courses for anyone purchasing a firearm, just as every hunter (at least in MD) must attend hunter safety courses. Boat owners, too, must take a boater safety course.

5. Fund the CDC to conduct research into gun violence. I do NOT think the CDC should advocate banning guns. They don't advocate banning cell phones, though I'll bet more people are injured or die from texting and driving than through gun violence.

These are reasonable steps that are good, IMO, for American society but do not abridge citizen rights.

Edited: Mar 18, 1:09am Top

>17 johnthefireman: If I were to guess, it will probably pass, but may see some stiff opposition in some quarters. You might not expect it, but Massachusetts is (for historical reasons) home to a hell of a lot of small arms manufacturing -- particularly in the western part of the state.


Mar 20, 12:06pm Top

Another school shooting. This one on Maryland. The shooter is dead. Two students are in the hospital, one in critical condition.


Mar 21, 10:56am Top

Why Are White Men Stockpiling Guns?
Jeremy Adam Smith | March 14, 2018

Research suggests it's largely because they're anxious about their ability to protect their families, insecure about their place in the job market and beset by racial fears

...more guns are being stockpiled by a small number of individuals. Three percent of the population now owns half of the country’s firearms, says a recent, definitive study from the Injury Control Research Center at Harvard University.

...men, who on average possess almost twice the number of guns female owners do. But not all men. Some groups of men are much more avid gun consumers than others. The American citizen most likely to own a gun is a white male—

...These are men who are anxious about their ability to protect their families, insecure about their place in the job market, and beset by racial fears. They tend to be less educated. For the most part, they don’t appear to be religious—and, suggests one study, faith seems to reduce their attachment to guns. In fact, stockpiling guns seems to be a symptom of a much deeper crisis in meaning and purpose in their lives. Taken together, these studies describe a population that is struggling to find a new story—one in which they are once again the heroes...


Edited: Mar 23, 11:30am Top

>19 2wonderY: The Maryland school shooting is an excellent example of the fallacy of expecting more laws, on top of all the existing laws, to somehow make us safer. Maryland already has strict anti-gun requirements in place, but that doesn't mean they're effective.

Maryland firearms purchasers/users must:

Be at least 21 (failed)

Submit fingerprints to the state police in advance (failed)

Undergo training (failed)

Pay a fee to acquire a handgun license (failed)

Complete a seven-day waiting period (failed)

Refrain from carrying a gun in a gun-free zone (failed)

Not use a gun to attempt murder (failed)

That's all pretty clear. How many more laws do you want violated? It's also worth noting, and inconvenient for the anti-gun zealots, that the shooter was stopped by a good guy with a gun.

Mar 21, 10:09pm Top

>21 TrippB: The only "failure" in regards to the law was him taking the gun to school. The main "failure" was on the part of his father to keep the weapon properly secured.


Mar 23, 6:26am Top

>21 TrippB: Maryland has fairly stringent gun laws and that's okay. I'm not in favor of more knee-jerk laws because, well, the laws we have are adequate and violators don't care about laws anyway. Until we address the underlying causes of violence we won't find a solution. Mental health, extremism... those are two of the issues I see.

>22 rastaphrog: Yes, the perpetrator is responsible for breaking the law. And why wasn't the gun locked up or have a trigger lock? That's another, large part of the issue. I expect that locks would reduce, though probably not eliminate, school shootings.

Mar 23, 6:31am Top

Wearing orange (a Parkland victim's favorite color)?
831 events worldwide--be safe.
$3,391,055 of $3.8M goal raised by 41,629 people in 1 month: https://www.gofundme.com/8psm8-march-for-our-lives

March For Our Lives

On March 24, the kids and families of March For Our Lives will take to the streets of Washington DC to demand that their lives and safety become a priority and that we end this epidemic of mass school shootings. The collective voices of the March For Our Lives movement will be heard. Join us in DC or march in your own community.


Meanwhile, wearing blaze orange and camo (hunters), and black, face coverings(?) Armed(?)
7 events

Pro-Gun Rallies on March 24: List of Counter Protests to March for Our Lives

Mar 23, 10:50am Top

The Maryland school shooter's primary victim passed away late last night. :(


Mar 24, 9:26am Top

>23 pmackey: I'm not in favor of more knee-jerk laws because, well, the laws we have are adequate and violators don't care about laws anyway.

Every law is adequate for the people who will follow it and inadequate for the people who don't care. Laws aren't just about acting as deterrents, they are communally-agreed upon statements about what is and isn't acceptable behavior in society. They provide us the ability to take action against those who ignore the common good.

What it really comes down to is that it requires a great amount of maturity and level-headedness to safely own and operate a firearm, just like it does to safely own and operate a car. Thank god the Second Amendment doesn't cover tanks.

Americans are not particularly known for their maturity and level-headedness, but because having a gun is a Constitutional right, we let everyone have as many as they want to play with anyway. Thanks to the First Amendment, we have a constitutional right to say really stupid crap whenever we want. Thanks to the Second Amendment, we have a right to be a danger to everyone around us.

Mar 26, 1:13am Top

'We share the stage': white suburban liberals and minority activists fight together for gun reform (Guardian)

For decades minority communities have pushed for regulation of the gun industry but white liberal allies have rarely shown up to fight with them. The Parkland students have made a concerted effort to close the ‘empathy gap’

Mar 26, 11:32am Top

Remington: Oldest US gunmaker files for bankruptcy (BBC)

Free market capitalism in action? Ironic?

Mar 27, 7:45am Top

Amazing how policy-makers are willing to govern without funding objective, sometimes inconvenient research that could inform their decisions on gun violence and other topics. "...a small but tragic group of kids lead lives that somehow turn them into killers of classmates or random strangers. If some precise mix of, say, early brain damage, social ineptitude, paranoia and fury over life’s unfair twists cooks up mass killers, scientists don’t know the toxic recipe."

Why science still can’t pinpoint a mass shooter in the making
A dearth of research means the science of rampage shootings simply doesn’t exist
Bruce Bower | March 23, 2018

...Whatever we think we know about school shootings, or mass public shootings in general, is either sheer speculation or wrong. A science of mass shootings doesn’t exist.

...Research on any kind of gun violence gets little federal funding

...When a research vacuum on a matter of public safety meets a 24-hour news cycle juiced up on national anguish, a thousand speculations bloom.

...what’s known about reasons for mass public shootings, sometimes called rampage shootings...not much.

...annual rates of U.S. mass public shootings per 100 million people...has increased since the mid-2000s, but not to unprecedented levels.

...these events occur in public places, include at least four people killed by gunshots within a 24-hour period and are not part of a robbery or any other separate crime...include workplace and school shootings.

...mass public shootings are rare...(but) have been occurring for at least 100 years.

...Virtually no research has examined whether a federal ban on assault weapons from 1994 to 2004 contributed to the relatively low rate of mass public shootings during that period. The same questions apply to concealed-carry laws, promoted as a way to deter rampage killers.

Mental illness also demands closer scrutiny...Of 160 mass public shooters from 1915 to 2013, about 60 percent had been assigned a psychiatric diagnosis or had shown signs of serious mental illness before the attack...In general, mental illness is not linked to becoming violent. But,...many mass shooters are tormented and paranoid individuals who want to end their painful lives after evening the score with those they feel have wronged them.

...males committed all but one of the tragedies... Sociologist Michael Kimmel of Stony Brook University in New York contends that a sense of wounded masculinity as a result of various life failures inspires rage and even violence. But researchers have yet to examine...

Although school shooters often report feeling a desperate need to make up for having been inadequate as men, many factors contribute to their actions

...three psychological categories:
psychopathic (lacking empathy and concern for others),
psychotic (experiencing paranoid delusions, hearing voices and having poor social skills) and
traumatized (coming from families marked by drug addiction, sexual abuse and other severe problems).

But only a few of the millions of people who qualify for those categories translate their personal demons into killing sprees...

“There is no good evidence on what differentiates a bitter, aggrieved man from a bitter, aggrieved and dangerous man,” says psychologist Benjamin Winegard of Carroll College in Helena, Mont.

No...evidence support claims that being a bully or a victim of bullying, or watching violent video games and movies, leads to mass public shootings...

Still, a small but tragic group of kids lead lives that somehow turn them into killers of classmates or random strangers. If some precise mix of, say, early brain damage, social ineptitude, paranoia and fury over life’s unfair twists cooks up mass killers, scientists don’t know the toxic recipe...


M. Rocque and G. Duwe. Rampage shootings: an historical, empirical and theoretical overview. Current Opinion in Psychology. Vol. 19, February 2018, p. 28. doi:10.1016/j.copsyc.2017.03.025. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352250X17300593

G. Duwe. The patterns and prevalence of mass public shootings in the United States, 1915‒2013. The Wiley Handbook of the Psychology of Mass Shootings. Published online September 23, 2016. doi:10.1002/9781119048015.ch2. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/9781119048015.ch2

J.A. Fox and J. Levin. Explaining mass shootings. The Wiley Handbook of the Psychology of Mass Shootings. Published online September 23, 2016. doi:10.1002/9781119048015.ch3. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/9781119048015.ch3

B. Winegard and C.J. Ferguson. The development of rampage shooters. The Wiley Handbook of the Psychology of Mass Shootings. Published September 23, 2016. doi:10.1002/9781119048015.ch4. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/9781119048015.ch4

Further Reading

R. Ehrenberg. What we do and don’t know about how to prevent gun violence. Science News Online, March 9, 2018.

M. Rosen. Gun research faces roadblocks and a dearth of data. Science News. Vol. 189, May 14, 2016, p. 16.

B. Bower. Childhood bullying leads to long-term mental health problems. Science News. Vol. 187, May 30, 2015, p. 12.

B. Bower. Violent developments. Science News. Vol. 169, May 27, 2006, p. 328.


Mar 27, 8:08am Top

>29 margd: There is a dangerous fallacy in that argument. It presumes that events that have a common result must have a common cause.

To use a medical analogy, it would be like saying "let's look for what causes people to limp", and assuming that a broken leg has something in common with a twisted ankle and a muscle paralysis and a brain injury, and looking for a common way to treat them all.

Sometimes different problems have different causes that result in the same outcome. If there are several different causes, that all lead to gun violence, then there may be no common factors. Research cannot fond something that is not there.

That is not to imply that research is not needed, of course.

Mar 27, 8:29am Top

>30 Guanhumara:

I think the point is that solid research would establish whether there is a common cause or not. If it establishes that there isn't a common cause, nevertheless it can establish what the different causes are. In either case, evidence-based remedies can then be explored.

Mar 27, 8:35am Top

>31 johnthefireman: I agree. Research is a good thing. Research is needed. But it must be remembered that "failure to find a common factor" is not a failure of research; it may mean that there is no common factor to be found.

Edited: Mar 27, 12:24pm Top

Retired Justice Stevens argues for repeal of Second Amendment
Veronica Stracqualursi | March 27, 2018

Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens believes the students and demonstrators who protested this past weekend for gun control should seek a repeal of the Second Amendment.

"A concern that a national standing army might pose a threat to the security of the separate states led to the adoption of that amendment," Stevens wrote an op-ed published in The New York Times Tuesday, adding, "today that concern is a relic of the 18th century."

A lifelong Republican but considered liberal in his judicial rulings, Stevens pointed to his dissent in the 2008 landmark District of Columbia v. Heller case that the Second Amendment protects an individual's right to possess a firearm for self-defense within his home.

"That decision — which I remain convinced was wrong and certainly was debatable — has provided the (National Rifle Association) with a propaganda weapon of immense power," wrote Stevens, who served from 1975 until he retired in 2010....


Mar 27, 12:57pm Top

>33 margd: Repealing the Second Amendment would result in chaos, playing right into the hands of gun advocates. I could envision it leading to severe civil distress if not war.

I haven't owned any guns since the mid-1980's. I'm in favor of gun reform. Outlawing guns, though, is too radical. Legal gun ownership isn't the problem. Misuse of guns is.

Yesterday, I did a Google search on the number of teen deaths caused by texting and driving. Eleven per day is what I found. So, I'm guessing more teens die of illegal phone use (at least in Maryland we have a hands free law, which you can observe routinely ignored). So, I'll listen to someone argue banning guns after they consider banning phones. Ban the phones (or guns or whatever) and let's all take our place in the United Nanny States of America.

My point is that there are adequate laws on the books whether we consider guns or phones.

Mar 27, 1:29pm Top

Bankrupt Remington made typewriters as well as firearms...
(Its once grand 19th c villa on Carlton Island in the St Lawrence R crumbles like the 18th c British fort that preceded it: http://www.thousandislandslife.com/BackIssues/Archive/tabid/393/articleType/Arti...)

3 Reasons Gun Companies Are Under Pressure
Alain Stephens | March 27, 2018

1. The surprise 'Trump Slump'
2. Shrinking markets
3. Product misfires


Mar 27, 2:30pm Top

>34 pmackey:
Repealing the 2nd Amendment is not equivalent to 'outlawing' guns.

However, it would perhaps remove a stalling-point for working towards sensible gun laws.

Edited: Mar 27, 2:36pm Top

>36 Crypto-Willobie:

Agreed. As is demonstrated in the clip of that raving liberal Mr Bean posted in a parallel thread, there is a process by which people in UK can obtain firearms if they can demonstrate a good reason and that they are fit to own one. Guns are not "outlawed", they are (strictly) regulated. The same is true in most modern western democracies.

Mar 28, 6:07am Top

>36 Crypto-Willobie: You may be correct but that isn't how it will be interpreted by current Second Amendment advocates (i.e., gun owners). Heck, I'm a moderate and I don't see it your way. Repealing the amendment isn't even a slippery slope. It's a precipice.

I think many people in the U.S. view firearms as a fundamental right because it's a guarantor of liberty. Why? Because many/some Americans believe they have a right to revolution should the government no longer represent them and political methods fail. I suspect that attitude derives from the Declaration of Independence, and the writings of Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson. Revolution is in America's DNA.

Let me state for the record (in case my overlords are reading this thread) that I do not agree with a "right to revolution." One civil war in our country was quite enough.

Mar 28, 8:26am Top

>38 pmackey: I think many people in the U.S. view firearms as a fundamental right because it's a guarantor of liberty. Why? Because many/some Americans believe they have a right to revolution should the government no longer represent them and political methods fail.

That's the rhetoric, but the relative lack of revolutions suggest that's not why people really want guns. Not that I'm complaining -- as you say, one civil war was enough. More than enough. But American government has been steeped in corruption many times and it wasn't an armed uprising that turned things around.
When it comes to "guarantors of liberty" the First Amendment has more going for it than the Second.

In the end, I think what the Second Amendment comes down to is property rights: We want the right to shoot people who try to take our stuff. It's all about "my liberty" not "our liberty."

Mar 28, 8:30am Top

>39 southernbooklady: what the Second Amendment comes down to is property rights: We want the right to shoot people who try to take our stuff. It's all about "my liberty" not "our liberty."

Or put another way, as Barney has done in a parallel thread, "handling my own problems".

Mar 28, 8:47am Top

America is not the only country where there are a significant number of citizens who are mistrustful of their government. Personally, I agree with what johnthefireman has said elsewhere about the duty of citizens in a democracy to engage with their government and keep it accountable, but - for the sake of argument - let's assume that these Americans are right to be so suspicious.

What seems to distinguish Americans from other people who share their views of "the government" is their assumption that owning firearms is
somehow a guarantor of civil liberty.

Wanting to shoot firearms as a sport, a demonstration of skill, I understand.
Guns as a means of controlling predatory wildlife, or for hunting, I understand.
I have seen arguments for and against the viability of guns as a means of home defence, but it is a valid impulse.

What I do not understand, is how gun ownership is supposed to protect you against this postulated malign state.

When "gun ownership" could mean "owning the same weapons as the armed forces of the state"(with the exception of cannon) then this 'defence of liberty' was a valid proposition. But nowadays, when a modern army is equipped with rapidly deployable heavy artillery, armoured vehicles, tanks, up to and including tactical nukes, what is any personal collection of firearms going to achieve? And I suppose we should add chemical and biological weapons to the list - since if we are supposing an evil government (as opposed to a democratically elected government with which you happen to disagree) then we should not assume that they would refrain from using weapons generally considered reprehensible.

Without debating whether this distrust of government is justified, there seems to me to be a fundamental disconnect between the stated aims and the proposed means.

Edited: Mar 28, 9:28am Top

>39 southernbooklady: >40 johnthefireman: >41 Guanhumara: All good points giving me much food for thought. It is unrealistic to expect an armed populace to defeat a modern, well-armed government. I don't think it's realistic. I suspect, though, that a notable portion of the American population DOES feel it is their right. Changing the U.S. Constitution is a purposely difficult task and should not be done lightly. Since gun violence is already illegal, I don't see the purpose of repealing the Second Amendment.

Gun control along the UK model would be a very hard sell in America. I oppose it. I'm in favor of some sort of gun reform.

>40 johnthefireman: I think the U.S. gets the idea that a person's home is his/her castle from English Common Law. I do believe that I have the right to defend my home, family and property from intruders using lethal force if necessary. In Maryland, an intruder has to be fully in your house and you have to (I believe) warn the person you are armed and attempt to retreat. Then if they continue advancing, you have the right to shoot. I think that's reasonable (as compared to other states where you can shoot someone stealing something from outside your home.)

Mar 28, 10:27am Top

>42 pmackey: Changing the U.S. Constitution is a purposely difficult task and should not be done lightly. Since gun violence is already illegal, I don't see the purpose of repealing the Second Amendment.

Given that it is children dying in schools that have prompted these discussions, not to mention an entire march on the capitol, I think we're long past the point where we can say anyone is treating the issue "lightly."

That said, if the Second Amendment were to disappear tomorrow (god, a girl can dream) it wouldn't solve the problem of what is basically America's gun culture -- a culture that romanticizes violent responses and idolizes those who are willing to use violence. We like rebels, vigilantes, individuals who stand against oppression, the strong who defend the weak, etc, etc. We secretly and not-so-secretly applaud the people who dish out immediate justice. Every Hollywood action film is a variation on this theme.

Of course it's all fantasy, but it's a fantasy we Americans hold onto like grim death. I think if we want to reduce our inclination to shoot our way out of situations, then what we need is a cultural campaign along the lines of anti-smoking campaigns. Something that changes our view of guns from things that are powerful and sexy to things that are icky, stupid and gross.

Mar 28, 11:04am Top

>41 Guanhumara: What I do not understand, is how gun ownership is supposed to protect you against this postulated malign state

If you look at the worldwide record of people who have taken up arms against the state, it rarely turns out well. Even if the government is eventually overthrown, the cost in human lives and suffering, the destruction of the country's infrastructure and economy, the build up of trauma, resentment, revenge and polarisation, and the strengthening of a culture of violence and militarism makes one question whether it was all worth it. Studies suggest that not only is a nonviolent revolution more likely to succeed, but the new government is more likely to be a democratic and human rights respecting one (cf Why Civil Resistance Works: The Strategic Logic of Nonviolent Conflict by Erica Chenoweth and Maria Stephan). I've lived through two civil wars, worked in a third, and been on the fringes of a couple more, and from my own experience I would discourage US citizens from even thinking about overthrowing their government by violent means.

>43 southernbooklady: Of course it's all fantasy, but it's a fantasy we Americans hold onto like grim death

Interesting point. Might one speculate that one of the reasons US citizens can hold this fantasy is precisely because, despite their perceptions, they actually live in a very peaceful, safe and well-ordered society? Many people in South Sudan and Somalia, for example, do have guns in order to protect themselves and their families from marauders, but very few would argue that this is the way they would wish it to be. As far as I can tell most would much prefer to be protected by the rule of law, good governance, a police force and a culture that does not idolise violence.

Mar 28, 11:17am Top

>45 Collectorator:

From that article: "Instead of him notifying law enforcement, he took matters in his own hands". Where have I seen those words before? Ah yes, >40 johnthefireman:.

Mar 28, 11:33am Top

>46 johnthefireman: I'm not surprised that your takeaway is one that completely ignores the fact that this man marched against guns one day and then murdered someone with a gun the very next day.

Edited: Mar 28, 11:41am Top

>47 Collectorator:

And if he had not had access to a gun when he got angry, somebody wouldn't have got murdered that day, and he wouldn't be spending the rest of his life in prison. So indeed he was right to march against guns.

Mar 28, 12:40pm Top

>48 johnthefireman: And if he had not had access to a gun when he got angry, somebody wouldn't have got murdered that day...

Not quite correct. What we can say is he wouldn't have murdered using a gun as a weapon if he had no access. Guns make it considerably easier than, say, a knife, hatchet, or baseball/cricket bat. In the end, though, it's just a tool.

Mar 28, 1:30pm Top

>48 johnthefireman: If only, on the day he marched against guns, he had been serious about what he was doing. If only he had been honest about the march and what it meant. If only he had truly believed in the march and what it stood for. Then he would have gotten rid of the gun and the very next day, when he became angry, he would not have had access to the gun. If only he was an honest, thinking man, marching for a cause for which he actually held a true interest and belief.

Instead, he's just a fucking hypocrite.

Mar 28, 2:02pm Top

>49 pmackey:

Fair comment, but as you say, the gun makes it much easier.

>50 Collectorator:

You seem to know a lot about his beliefs and motives. Would you care to share your source?

Mar 28, 2:16pm Top

There are fucking hypocrites on both sides so pointing them out doesn't make for much of an argument.

Mar 28, 2:27pm Top

>51 johnthefireman: I was guessing at what the marchers believed. Should I not take them at their word? Should I disbelieve their slogans?

O dear. I am afraid it was all a sham, john.

I guess it was just a fun thing to go do on a nice day. So Sharpton's brother isn't such a hypocrite. He's just a regular murderer who enjoyed a day out hangin' with his friends the day before he killed a woman over a car.

Mar 28, 3:09pm Top

Spending bill's gun research line: Does it nullify Dickey amendment?
Jon Greenberg | March 27th, 2018

..."The Secretary of Health and Human Services has stated the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) has the authority to conduct research on the causes of gun violence."...

...(U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla.) worked across the aisle to "secure unprecedented language" that paves the way for the CDC "to sponsor evidence-based research into ways to reduce gun violence"

Advocates of more research are watching to see whether the government goes further down that road.


Mar 28, 3:14pm Top

>53 Collectorator: I won't guess at what the brother of Sharpton might have been thinking, but if you want to know what was in the minds of some of the marchers, this provides a good example:


Mar 28, 3:25pm Top

School board in deep red Pennsylvania district rejects NRA ‘blood money’

A school board in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, wanted nothing to do with the NRA’s increasingly poisonous politics. On Monday, the members rejected a $4,730 grant from the organization to help finance the high school’s rifle team.
And the rejection by the Stroudsburg board highlights just how toxic the NRA has become, even in rural areas. Its smear campaign against Parkland survivors and opposition to sensible gun safety reforms have done nothing to help its reputation.

In a desperate plea for attention, the NRA released a video mocking the students on the eve of the March for Our Lives. The video crassly told survivors that “no one would know their names” if their friends hadn’t died.

Mar 28, 3:55pm Top

>56 2wonderY: Stroudsburg High School has fewer than 1400 students. NRA-qualified instructors have trained many thousands of rifle teams-mostly law enforcement and military--over many years since their founding in 1871. This school board's decision to deny their rifle team the best of firearms training isn't particularly significant--except for the students who won't receive quality training because of their school board's politically-motivated decision.

Mar 28, 4:08pm Top

>55 TrippB: I wonder if they've been educated enough by this time to be embarrassed yet.

Edited: Mar 28, 4:40pm Top

>57 TrippB: The NRA is not the only game in town for instructor training, nor even necessarily the best.
Here's a venerable program that deserves some renewed attention.


Mar 29, 6:12am Top

For the last 20 years or so, the NRA has been its worst enemy due to its polarizing views. I say that as a former NRA member. I know when I dropped my membership I felt they no longer represented my interests as a gun owner due to their no compromise attitude.

Edited: Mar 29, 7:28am Top

Side scuffle: Mass-shooting survivor and gun-control advocate, mocked by Fox News personality, urges her advertisers to withdraw. Hope her mockery is worst he has to contend with...

Parkland survivor David Hogg calls on advertisers to boycott Laura Ingraham’s Fox News show
Kate Feldman | March 29, 2018

Fox News host Laura Ingraham mocked David Hogg for his college rejections.

...Top Laura Ingraham Advertisers
1. @sleepnumber
2. ATT
3. Nutrish
4. Allstate & @esurance
5. Bayer
6. @RocketMortgage Mortgage
7. @LibertyMutual
8. Arbys
9. @TripAdvisor
10. Nestle
11. hulu
12. @Wayfair


How a survivor of the Florida school shooting became the victim of an online conspiracy
Craig Timberg, Elizabeth Dwoskin, Abby Ohlheiser and Andrew Ba Tran | February 21, 2018

...Hogg’s mother, Rebecca Boldrick, an elementary school teacher, scoffed at the conspiracy theories growing online about her son and other Parkland students.

...The wild allegations online have also taken on a more dangerous tone, she said. Boldrick said her family has received death threats online...


Mar 29, 9:36am Top

>61 margd: Pardon my language, but it's a fucking asshole (Laura Ingraham in this case) that attacks a person, especially a teen, for personal issues because of a public debate. It's a cheap shot and succeeds in further polarization.

Edited: Mar 29, 5:46pm Top

Hogg successfully stared down Fox News--amazing. Has anyone else done so?

ETA: Guess there have been a few boycotts, but only O'Reilly fired. Hog intent just to stop the invective against students?

Apr 3, 6:46am Top

"Survivors of a school shooting in Parkland, Florida, returned from spring break Monday to new security measures that some students said made them feel like they were in prison...security barriers and bag check lines...administrators handed out the students' newest mandatory accessories: a see-through backpack much like the ones required at some stadiums and arenas, and an identification badge they must wear at all times."

"...(students) attached an orange price tag to their bags. The $1.05 tag is intended to protest politicians, including Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who accept money from the National Rifle Association, by putting a price on each student."

"...The school district said it's considering whether to install metal detectors at the school's entrances...."

Dianne Gallagher, Emanuella Grinberg and Paul P. Murphy | April 2, 2018

Edited: Apr 3, 6:52am Top

>65 margd: Unfortunate, but understandable security measures. When my kids were in high school, they had security badges they had to wear. No metal detectors but that's only a matter of time. They have a police resource officer assigned. After Columbine all the local schools began locking their doors during the day and you had to be buzzed in to enter.

Apr 3, 8:22am Top

>66 pmackey: When my kids were in high school, they had security badges they had to wear. No metal detectors but that's only a matter of time. They have a police resource officer assigned. After Columbine all the local schools began locking their doors during the day and you had to be buzzed in to enter.

Greatness, freedom, and liberty. American style.

Apr 3, 8:45am Top

A few years ago, dropping off some stuff at a charter elementary school in a nasty part of Detroit, I found it kind of scary to be locked out with no one (apparently) answering the doorbell. What WERE they afraid of on a beautiful morning, I wondered, as I kept an eye behind me. A teacher passing in the hallway eventually let me in. The kids looked happy and the school a warm, well-run, and enriching environment in contrast to the blight outside. How sad that more school doors will now be locked...

Apr 4, 6:41am Top

Three wounded at YouTube headquarters: woman armed with a handgun--beautiful, Iranian, apparently passionate about her art and causes--kills herself.

Disgruntled video-maker who expressed anger at YouTube policies ID’d as shooter
Dominic Fracassa, Annie Ma and Kevin Fagan | April 3, 2018

The woman suspected of opening fire at YouTube’s headquarters in San Bruno Tuesday was a disgruntled video-maker, Nasim Aghdam of Southern California, law enforcement sources told The Chronicle.

On a website consisting of a collage of photos and video posts, Aghdam rails against YouTube for taking down some of her videos and for skimping on revenue driven by the traffic to her YouTube page.

“There is no equal growth opportunity on YOUTUBE or any other video sharing site, your channel will grow if they want to!!!!!” Aghdam wrote. “Youtube filtered my channels to keep them from getting views!”...


Apr 4, 7:25am Top

"Hunting" with an AR15...

The State of Alaska is scrambling to shut down hunting and trapping adjacent to Denali National Park over concerns that excessive kills may destabilize this iconic wolf population. Photos posted today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) show a man armed with an AR15 semiautomatic rifle displaying ten wolf carcasses outside Denali.

In an emergency order issued on March 30, 2018 and revised yesterday, Alaska Department of Fish & Game (DFG) cut short the hunting and trapping season on state land along the Stampede Trail, including land adjacent to the eastern boundary of Denali National Park and Preserve. The stated reason for the order is that –

“The wolf harvest this season in the area described is more than the past 5-year average and there is the potential for more harvest to occur before the end of the regulatory hunting and trapping seasons.”

While DFG claims in its order that “There are no conservation concerns for wolves” in the Denali region, the agency admits that it has no idea how many wolves have been killed this year. Moreover, the state has not acknowledged reports that a hunter on a snow machine armed with a semiautomatic rifle recently killed ten wolves outside Denali.

...In response to the recent excessive losses at Denali, Alaska citizens are renewing their call for the Governor to establish a permanent no-kill buffer protecting all park predator species – wolves, bears, lynx, wolverines - along the boundary of Denali, to restore the natural ecosystem and visitor viewing success in the park.


Edited: Apr 18, 8:00am Top

What if all guns disappeared? (BBC)

A thought experiment from the Beeb.

Apr 18, 8:42am Top

>71 johnthefireman: S. M. Stirling imagined a more thorough disruption, with a worldwide event that suddenly alters physical laws so that electricity, gunpowder, and most other forms of high-energy-density technology no longer work. Dies the Fire

Apr 18, 8:45am Top

>72 2wonderY:

That reminds me a little of an old book called The Peacemaker by C S Forester

Apr 18, 8:51am Top

>73 johnthefireman: Ha! Found it on Gutenburg Canada. Thanks. It sounds worth a read.

Apr 18, 9:14am Top

>72 2wonderY: Just tell me that the world imagined by S. M. Stirling allowed for steam locomotives and ships and I'm all in -- even if it means I'd have to give up LT and Facebook.

Apr 18, 9:25am Top

Well, I think so - it's been several years - but I believe wood was still combustible, and thus coal too???

Nope. The laws of physics actually change.


"an unknown phenomenon permanently disables most forms of modern technology such as electricity, high pressure steam power, and combustion, including computers, electronics, guns, car and jet engines, and batteries. "

Apr 18, 9:34am Top

>76 2wonderY: You've piqued my interest. I'll have to look for Dies the Fire.

Apr 19, 9:46am Top

>77 pmackey: I love being a book enabler.

Hundreds of police chiefs tell Congress not to pass concealed-carry bill

These bills would override state permitting laws that limit who can carry a loaded hidden gun in each state and would force states to allow individuals to carry guns who are not qualified to do so under their own laws,” the letter reads.
“This legislation is a dangerous encroachment on individual state efforts to protect public safety, and it would effectively nullify duly enacted state laws and hamper law enforcement efforts to prevent gun violence.”

Apr 19, 10:27am Top

>78 2wonderY: I can't get to the link, my computer internet access is too slow.

On the surface, this appears to be a states' rights issue and the legality of a federal law superseding state laws. While I would like more uniformity in gun laws across the U.S. I think it's ridiculous to think what's right for New York and Massachusetts would work equally well in Arizona. While I don't buy into the "good guy with a gun" scenario, I just don't see one cookie cutter law working well across the different states.

I think I've heard (but can't swear to it) that some states recognize other state's licensing, but they do so with state-to-state agreements.

Edited: May 18, 12:39pm Top

Wafflehouse, Antioch, TN. April 22, 2018:

Only four dead this time, the threshold for "mass" shooting, thanks to unarmed hero who disarmed half-naked gunman, who is still loose though identity is known. Semi-automatic assault style weapon. Might be hate crime: hero (29) and three of the victims were black and the fourth was Hispanic (victims were all in their 20s, including a worker, star athlete, music artist, aspiring engineer); male gunman was white (also looks in his 20s?) and tried to access President at White House last year. Hero James Shaw Jr, a TN State U graduate working as wire technician for AT&T, established a Go-Fund-Me site for the victims. Amazing young man.

Unarmed good guy stops bad guy with a gun--

Mass-shooting Checklist (Domestic Edition)

___moment of silence
___flag at half mast/ETA
___overlay Facebook profile pic
___condolences & prayers
___reference deity

___thank first responders, emergency depts., & police
___"Now is not the time to talk about gun control"
___"We need police reports before we can talk about solutions."
?__"Unite!" (Hope to see more of James Shaw, Jr.)

___interview family, neighbors, coworkers
___blame mental illness, lone wolf
___history of abuse
X__celebrate heroes (Unarmed James Shaw Jr disarmed the gunman)
___give blood, $

O__Presidential visit (Apr 26, not even a tweet, though Trump welcomed Kanye West's statement of support.
BRIEF mention of Shaw by Sanders: https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/press-briefing-press-secretary-sarah-sanders-042318/ )
___blame others

___call for improved gun control
?__investigate/improve processing of tips, warnings (Suspect had guns seized after arrest near White House last year)

___NRA: go dark
___NRA: issue "good guy with a gun" argument
___NRA: incite
___invest in gun stocks

___allow CDC to research gun violence?
___introduce meaningful screening of wouldbe gun buyers?
___ban silencers, automatic weapons, Saturday night specials, hollow bullets, bump stocks, _____?
___cover mental health?
___direct Justice Dept to address domestic terrorism?
___ban guns in public milieux?
___allow states/cities to protect their citizens?
buyback firearms (per Australia)?


Apr 23, 11:15am Top

The sad lesson here is that the shooter had his guns taken away after he tried to jump a White House barrier. The guns were eventually returned to his father and he gave them back! WTF?

Apr 24, 12:30pm Top

An American Tragedy in Nashville

The weapons “would not have been lawfully in his hands in Illinois,” Nashville’s police chief, Steve Anderson, said at a news conference on Sunday. “Now, possessing them in Tennessee, I don’t know that he would have violated any Tennessee law.”
They (the Tennessee General Assembly)'ve done worse than nothing. Instead, they’ve expanded gun rights to such an extreme that Tennessee is now the go-to place for gun transfers that wouldn’t be permissible in other places. This month The Knoxville News Sentinel reported that the F.B.I. had identified Tennessee as a “source state” in a pipeline that transferred guns and ammunition from unwitting private sellers in Tennessee to convicted felons in California. “It is very common for suppliers of firearms to obtain their supply from states with more lenient firearms laws, which are also known as source states,” Kimberly Vesling, an F.B.I. agent, explained.

Apr 24, 1:12pm Top

>82 2wonderY:, Good, but sad to know. This is another tragedy that could have been avoided by laws currently on the books in Illinois. Unfortunately it was undercut by apparent poor judgment of the shooter's father. I'm usually leery of blaming the parents for their children's acts, but superficially at least it looks like his father bears some of the responsibility. While Tennessee law may not have been violated, I expect an ambitious lawyer could find reasonable cause for a civil suit.

Apr 28, 2:42pm Top

Must give Dick’s Sporting Goods some business:

...Dick’s Sporting Goods took their campaign to alienate law-abiding gun owners to an extraordinary new level last week. The beleaguered retailer announced that in addition to removing certain types of semi-automatic rifles from their stores, the company will destroy its stock of these commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms along with any accessories for the guns...


Apr 30, 8:48am Top

>80 margd: Antioch, TN shooting? *crickets*

10 Pro-Gun Myths, Shot Down
Dave GilsonJan. 31, 2013

Fact-checking some of the gun lobby’s favorite arguments shows they’re full of holes.

Myth #1: They’re coming for your guns.
...America’s roughly 70 to 80 million gun owners already have the feds and cops outgunned by a factor of around 79 to 1...

Myth #2: Guns don’t kill people—people kill people.
...States with higher gun ownership rates have higher gun murder rates—as much as 114 percent higher than states with lower gun ownership rates...

Myth #3: An armed society is a polite society.
...Drivers who carry guns are 44 percent more likely than unarmed drivers to make obscene gestures at other motorists, and 77 percent more likely to follow them aggressively...

Myth #4: More good guys with guns can stop rampaging bad guys.
...in the past 33 years (up to 2103): 0
• Chances that a shooting in a hospital emergency department involves guns taken from guards: 1 in 5

Myth #5: Keeping a gun at home makes you safer.
...For every time a gun is used in self-defense in the home, there are 7 assaults or murders, 11 suicide attempts, and 4 accidents involving guns in or around a home...

Myth #6: Carrying a gun for self-defense makes you safer.
...A study in Philadelphia found that the odds of an assault victim being shot were 4.5 times greater if he carried a gun. His odds of being killed were 4.2 times greater.

Myth #7: Guns make women safer.
... In 2013, more than 5 times more women were shot by husbands, boyfriends, and ex-partners than murdered by male strangers...

Myth #8: “Vicious, violent video games” deserve more blame than guns.
...So said NRA executive vice president Wayne LaPierre after the Newtown massacre. So what’s up with Japan?

Myth #9: More and more Americans are becoming gun owners.
...More guns are being sold, but they’re owned by a shrinking portion of the population...

Myth #10: We don’t need more gun laws—we just need to enforce the ones we have.
...More than 75 percent of the weapons used in mass shootings between 1982 and 2012 were obtained legally.
• As much as 40 percent of all gun sales involve private sellers and don’t require background checks. In a survey, 40 percent of prison inmates who used guns in their crimes said they’d gotten them this way. More than 80 percent of gun owners support closing this loophole.
• An investigation found that 62 percent of online gun sellers were willing to sell to buyers who said they couldn’t pass a background check...


Edited: May 6, 11:06am Top

A poignant picture from a recent demonstration in South Sudan (where there are plenty of fully automatic weapons in the hands of civilians).

Can't make the picture appear, but anyway it is here and says "GIVE OUR CHILDREN PENS AND NOT GUNS!!!".

Edited again: Picture now seems to appeared.

May 6, 11:30am Top

I sometimes think that those in power would prefer people to have guns instead of pens. A person with a gun is a simple threat, easily countered. A person with an education who thinks for themself is not so easily suppressed.

Edited: May 6, 1:22pm Top

>86 johnthefireman: It didn't appear for me, so I downloaded it to my member gallery and referenced it from there like this:

<img src="https://pics.librarything.com/picsizes/69/42/6942cac3e906818636770327151434b41716b42.jpg" >

May 10, 6:43am Top

California teachers' pension fund to pressure gun retailers
Adam Ashton | May 09, 2018

...The $225 billion California State Teachers’ Retirement System plans to use its clout to nudge retailers to drop their remaining stock of guns that the California Department of Justice considers to be "assault-type weapons."

If the retailers stay in the gun business, CalSTRS would attempt to unseat members of their boards of directors, and would consider divesting from the companies under a new policy it approved on Wednesday. CalSTRS plans to hire two new employees to carry out the program...


May 11, 1:31am Top

New NRA president says gun control activists are 'civil terrorists' (Guardian)

As students and victims of shooting violence push for stronger laws, Oliver North compares NRA’s struggles to the civil rights movement...

May 12, 8:42am Top

>92 johnthefireman: North reveals NRA for what it is:

North's Weapons Supplier Tied to Terrorist Abu Nidal
July 17, 1987|MICHAEL WINES

WASHINGTON — Lt. Col. Oliver L. North's secret arms network supplied Nicaraguan rebels with $1.5 million in weapons bought in 1985 and 1986 from a Syrian smuggler tied to notorious terrorist Abu Nidal, according to records released by the congressional Iran- contra panels.

The weapons, apparently of Polish origin, were purchased from Manzer Kassar, a Damascus drug smuggler and arms merchant. The 42-year-old Kassar and his three brothers have built a multimillion-dollar empire on military deals in Eastern and Western Europe.

Administration officials, speaking on condition that they not be named, said Kassar has "clearly established" business links to the Abu Nidal terrorist ring, responsible for a November, 1985, Egyptair hijacking in which 57 people died and for December, 1985, massacres in the Rome and Vienna airports....


Edited: May 14, 11:21am Top

>93 margd:

Interesting. That one is personal. I was caught in the 1988 attack by Abu Nidal fighters in Khartoum with automatic weapons and hand grenades at the Sudan Club (where I was) and a bomb at the Acropole Hotel. I got out with nothing worse than a small shrapnel scratch to my foot, but several Sudanese and British people were killed. Charming to think that the USA was dealing with Abu Nidal's associates.

Edited: May 14, 8:51am Top

>94 johnthefireman: You must have nine lives! (Stay safe. :-)

Edited: Jun 29, 4:43am Top

LIVE: 9 killed in Santa Fe High School shooting, NBC News says
Explosive devices found at school, off-campus
Aaron Barker | May 18, 2018

...a majority of those that were killed in the shooting were students...two people who were taken into custody, including the person believed to be the gunman, are students at the school.

(Harris County Sheriff Ed ) Gonzalez said a Santa Fe Independent School District police officer was critically injured in the shooting.

A search of the school is ongoing, Gonzalez said.

Santa Fe ISD officials said in a tweet that possible explosive devices were found at the school and at an off-campus location...


Mass-shooting Checklist (Santa Fe HS, TX, 5/18/2018 Edition)

___moment of silence
___flag at half mast/ETA
___overlay Facebook profile pic
X__condolences & prayers (Prez and VP were right on this one.)
___reference deity

___thank first responders, emergency depts., & police
___"Now is not the time to talk about gun control"
___"We need police reports before we can talk about solutions."

___interview family, neighbors, coworkers
___blame mental illness, lone wolf
___history of abuse
___celebrate heroes (Unarmed James Shaw Jr disarmed the gunman)
___give blood, $

___Presidential visit
___blame others

___call for improved gun control
___investigate/improve processing of tips, warnings

___NRA: go dark
___NRA: issue "good guy with a gun" argument
___NRA: incite
___invest in gun stocks

___allow CDC to research gun violence?
___introduce meaningful screening of wouldbe gun buyers?
___ban silencers, automatic weapons, Saturday night specials, hollow bullets, bump stocks, _____?
___cover mental health?
___direct Justice Dept to address domestic terrorism?
___ban guns in public milieux?
___allow states/cities to protect their citizens?
___buyback firearms (per Australia)?


May 19, 8:53am Top

Exactly one week after NRA President (and felon) Oliver North called the Parkland kids terrorists,
multiple students have just been shot dead at Santa Fe High School.

Kaivan Shroff @KaivanShroff
7:59 AM - 18 May 2018

Edited: May 19, 9:40am Top

It’s the Guns
David Frum | May 18, 2018

Americans of high-school age are 82 times more likely to die from a gun homicide than 15- to 19-year-olds in the rest of the developed world.

...more young Americans have died in school shootings in 2018 than in all the nation’s combat operations all over the world...



The Rules of the Gun Debate
David Frum Oct 6, 2017

The rules for discussing firearms in the United States obscure the obvious solutions.

A parable:

A village has been built in the deepest gully of a floodplain.

At regular intervals, flash floods wipe away houses, killing all inside. Less dramatic—but more lethal—is the steady toll as individual villagers slip and drown in the marshes around them.

After especially deadly events, the villagers solemnly discuss what they might do to protect themselves. Perhaps they might raise their homes on stilts? But a powerful faction among the villagers is always at hand to explain why these ideas won’t work. “No law can keep our village safe! The answer is that our people must learn to be better swimmers - and oh by the way, you said ‘stilts’ when the proper term is ‘piles,’ so why should anybody listen to you?”

So the argument rages, without result, year after year, decade after decade, fatalities mounting all the while. Nearby villages, built in the hills, marvel that the gully-dwellers persist in their seemingly reckless way of life. But the gully-dwellers counter that they are following the wishes of their Founders, whose decisions two centuries ago must always be upheld by their descendants.

...Rule 1. The measures to be debated must bear some relationship to the massacre that triggered the debate. If the killer acquired his weapons illegally, it’s out of bounds to point out how lethally easy it is to buy weapons legally...

Rule 2. The debate must focus on unusual weapons and accessories: bump stocks, for example, the villain of the moment...

Rule 3. The debate must always honor the “responsible gun owners” who buy weapons for reasonable self-defense. ...out of bounds to ask for some proof...to propose measures that might impinge on owners...

Rule 4. Gun ownership is always to be discussed as a rational choice motivated by reasonable concerns for personal safety. No matter how blatantly gun advocates appeal to fears and fantasies...out of bounds to observe that “Chicago” is shorthand for “we only have gun crime because of black people” or how often “I want to protect my family” is code for “I need to prove to my girlfriend who’s really boss.”...


Edited: May 20, 6:41am Top

Texas shooting: Houston police chief 'hits rock bottom' on gun reform (BBC)

The police chief of Houston says he has hit "rock bottom" over failure to enact gun reforms...

"I know some have strong feelings about gun rights but I want you to know I've hit rock bottom and I am not interested in your views as it pertains to this issue. Please do not post anything about guns aren't the problem and there's little we can do... This isn't a time for prayers, and study and inaction, it's a time for prayers, action and the asking of God's forgiveness for our inaction (especially the elected officials that ran to the cameras today, acted in a solemn manner, called for prayers, and will once again do absolutely nothing)"...

Edited: May 21, 5:53am Top

Powerful posts at #IfIDieInASchoolShooting. SAD!

Hey, grown-ups. Children are tweeting under #IfIDieInASchoolShooting. Take a look.
Some want their bodies dropped off @NRA headquarters. Many want their deaths politicized. They have eulogy suggestions and funeral preferences.
Children in America.

Sandra Steingraber @ssteingraber1 12h12 hours ago (5/20/2018)

May 22, 10:10am Top

Lockport schools turn to state-of-the-art technology to beef up security – The Buffalo News
admin | May 20, 2018

Next school year, Lockport schools will have in place the kind of security software used at airports, casinos and sensitive government installations.

Facial recognition and tracking software will add an unprecedented level of security at the schools. District officials have decided locked entrance doors, bullet-proof glass and sign-in registers at the front desk are not enough...

...Lockport will spend $1.4 million of the state’s money on the Aegis system, from SN Technologies of Ganonoque, Ont., in all 10 district buildings this summer. It’s part of a $2.75 million security system that includes 300 digital video cameras.

...How it works

The Aegis system doesn’t have X-ray capabilities, (consultant Tony) Olivo said.

It can’t detect metal, concealed weapons or explosives.

What it can do is alert officials if someone whose photo has been programmed into the system – a registered sex offender, wanted criminal, non-custodial parent, expelled student or disgruntled former employee – comes into range of one of the 300 high-resolution digital cameras.

“A school is now a target, unfortunately,” said Robert L. LiPuma, Lockport’s technology director. “Based on recommendations, things we saw, drills we did, pilots we did, we assessed all of that and we thought this was the best option, economically and responsibly, for the safety of our community.”

If a known bad guy is spotted, or a gun or other weapon is visible to the system’s cameras, the software could flash an alarm to any district officials connected to it, and also to police.

In the last five years, all of the major school shootings in the U.S. have been carried out by current or recent students of the school in question.

At the Sandy Hook massacre in Newtown, Conn., in 2012, the shooter was a mentally ill 20-year-old who shot his way through a locked entrance door before killing 20 children and employees. Police arrived five minutes after the killer entered...


May 22, 12:05pm Top

So while we have teachers across the country walking out to get better pay and more classroom resources, school districts are going to be spending their scarce money on high-tech security instead.

Edited: May 22, 12:35pm Top

>103 jjwilson61: OT, but NY State while forcing projects to eschew (steel?) from Canada--even when it's cheaper than hauling it from way downstate, is paying for Canadian software to flag potentially problematic people, which doesn't sound consistent with a school's mission, even if legal? IS it legal?


Discomfort with a similar program that Amazon sold to Orlando police: https://www.npr.org/2018/05/22/613115969/orlando-police-testing-amazons-real-time-facial-recognition

May 23, 8:56am Top

No links between Ritalin and school shootings, as NRA's Oliver North claimed
Manuela Tobias | May 22nd, 2018

...North said, "They have been drugged in many cases … many of these young boys have been on Ritalin since they were in kindergarten."

A minor percentage of school shooters studied had been medicated, not "many." The notion that many have specifically been on the drug Ritalin since kindergarten has no factual basis. More broadly, causation has never been established between the medication and violence. We found no specific ties between ADHD medication and school shootings, either.

We rate this statement False.


May 24, 2:13am Top

As a convicted felon, NRA's new president Oliver North can't own a gun in 15 states? Strange choice!

Edited: May 26, 10:24am Top

>106 margd: From Wikipedia: However, on July 20, 1990, with the help of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), North's convictions were vacated, after the appeals court found that witnesses in his trial might have been impermissibly affected by his immunized congressional testimony.

May 26, 7:33am Top

Science teacher Jason Seaman is truly a hero and deserving of praise. Wonder if he'll get a presidential shout-out not accorded Wafflehouse hero James Shaw Jr.?

(I remember the anxiety around tests in HS and college, but our only intruder (once) was a streaker! Poor students have so much more to worry about these days.)

Hero science teacher shot three times as he tackled student gunman at Indiana middle school
Jessica Schladebeck | May 26, 2018

...Jason Seaman, an instructor at Noblesville West Middle School, didn't hesitate when the male student interrupted a test by walking into a classroom armed with two handguns — and opened fire.

...The student fired off several rounds before Seaman, a former defensive end for Southern Illinois University, took three bullets while tackling him, according to witnesses and his mother.

The teacher and one pupil were wounded before the shooter was taken into custody near Seaman's classroom. The educator reportedly restrained the suspect while shouting at his kids to run from the classroom.

Seaman was treated at the Indiana University Methodist Hospital for gunshot wounds to his abdomen, hip and forearm, his mother said via Facebook.

...A 13-year-old girl, who was hit, is being treated at a local hospital...


May 26, 7:57am Top

Publix halts donations to self-described ‘NRA sellout’ amid boycott, ‘die-in’ protests by David Hogg
Marwa Eltagouri | May 25, 2018

David Hogg and other demonstrators lie on the floor at a Publix Supermarket in Coral Springs, Fla., Friday, May 25, 2018. Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School were among those who participated in the “die-in” protest. (Mike Stocker/South Florida Sun-Sentinel/Associated Press)

The supermarket chain Publix on Friday announced that it would suspend its political contributions to Adam Putnam, a Republican candidate for Florida governor, after being faced with overwhelming pressure to cut ties with him because of his fierce support for the National Rifle Association...


May 29, 3:51am Top

Unbelievable! Maker trying to make a quick buck or to somehow support NRA's current excuses?
Don't suppose legal for police to track people who purchase such a video game? Flag them if they try to purchase a gun?

'Active Shooter' Invites Gamers To Simulate A School Shooting
Jason Evangelho | May 28, 2018

...PC game called Active Shooter, ever-so-safely labeled as a "S.W.A.T. simulator" that tasks players with hunting and capturing an at-large shooter murdering school children.

Alternately, you can become the shooter, which the developer (again, safely) calls a "dynamic role." At that point your objective is to increase the body count of cops and unarmed children. The kill tally is right there on the left side of your screen as you play.

...releases on June 6

...plays like a typical FPS (First-Person Shooter) where you aim down your sights and slaughter realistic looking teenage students.

...video games are protected by the First Amendment...


May 29, 1:15pm Top

Edited: May 31, 6:32am Top

Brief clips of video are horrifying...no less the decision to publish in the first place.

'Active Shooter' Video Game Pulled From Distribution—But Not Because of Its Theme
Chris Morris | May 30, 2018

...Valve, in its statement announcing the decision, indicated the move had less to do with the game’s offensive premise (which let players opt to be either the killer or the SWAT team tasked with neutralizing the situation in a school or office shooting) and more with the history of the person who made the game.

“This developer and publisher is, in fact, a person calling himself Ata Berdiyev, who had previously been removed last fall when he was operating as ‘bcInteractive’ and ‘Elusive Team,'” the company said in a statement. “Ata is a troll, with a history of customer abuse, publishing copyrighted material, and user review manipulation. His subsequent return under new business names was a fact that came to light as we investigated the controversy around his upcoming title. We are not going to do business with people who act like this towards our customers or Valve.”

As for the game’s content, the publisher punted that conversation down the road.

“The broader conversation about Steam’s content policies is one that we’ll be addressing soon"...


Edited: May 31, 6:52am Top

Russia?! (NRA?)

Creator of 'Active Shooter' Speaks Out: I'm No Psychopath
Valve says Ata Berdyev developed the game, but a 21-year-old from Moscow says he's the actual creator and didn't mean to offend anyone. Concerned parents likely beg to differ.
Michael Kan | May 30, 2018

The developer of Active Shooter, a controversial game that lets you carry out a school shooting, says he's no "psychopath," but merely an amateur developer from Moscow with poor English skills and little knowledge of US current events.

Anton Makarevskiy, 21, told PCMag he was hoping to sell a "few hundred copies" of the first-person shooter before Steam dropped the game from its platform on Tuesday and banned its developer and publisher, Revived Games and Acid.

Valve, which owns Steam, placed the blame on Ata Berdyev, who the company called a "troll, with a history of customer abuse, publishing copyrighted material, and user review manipulation."

Berdyev, who translated for Makarevskiy during an interview with PCMag, owned up to previous bad behavior ("I did push a line a lot"), but said he was not directly involved in the development of Active Shooter, beyond offering "tips" to Makarevskiy. Valve only fingered Berdyev as its developer because Berdyev let Makarevskiy use his US bank accounts to receive payment on Steam game sales since US economic sanctions made transfers between the US and Russia difficult...


Jun 6, 2:58pm Top

DeVos: School safety panel created after Parkland shooting will not look at role of guns in school violence
Associated Press and Grace Panetta | June 6, 2018

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos says her school safety commission will not look at the role of guns in schools.
The White House website, however, does mention age restrictions for firearms as an area of research.
The commission was created in the aftermath of the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

...When asked by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) if an 18-year old should be able to go into a gun store and "moments later come out with an AR-15-style gun and hundreds of rounds in ammunition," DeVos didn't give a direct answer, responding that the topic was "very much a matter for debate."

DeVos is chairing the panel that President Donald Trump created following the February shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida...


Jun 6, 5:06pm Top

"...When asked by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) if an 18-year old should be able to go into a gun store and "moments later come out with an AR-15-style gun and hundreds of rounds in ammunition," DeVos didn't give a direct answer, responding that the topic was "very much a matter for debate."

The inclusion of this statement is interesting. Would you prefer that the minimum age for an AR-15 style (style?} gun and ammunition be raised? Perhaps to 21? If yes, then it is comparably reasonable to say that voting age should also be raised to 21.

Edited: Jun 6, 5:51pm Top

>115 TrippB: And the age one can be President dropped to 21?


The look on their faces: SAD!

Pennsylvania eighth graders issued bulletproof backpack plates as graduation gift
Justin Wise - 06/05/18 09:23 AM EDT

...Students at St. Cornelius in Chadds Ford, Pa., were outfitted with the "ballistic shields" thanks to a donation from a local company, according to Fox 29. The report notes that Unequal Technologies developed the ultra-thin shield and designed a 10-by-12-inch plate that can slip into a backpack.

The bulletproof backpack plates were also handed out to 25 faculty members at the school...


Jun 7, 3:49pm Top

Suicide rates rise sharply across the United States, new report shows
Amy Ellis Nutt | June 7, 2018

Suicide rates rose in all but one state between 1999 and 2016, with increases seen across age, gender, race and ethnicity, according to a report released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In more than half of all deaths in 27 states, the people had no known mental health condition when they ended their lives.

In North Dakota, the rate jumped more than 57 percent. In the most recent period studied (2014 to 2016), the rate was highest in Montana, at 29.2 per 100,000 residents, compared with the national average of 13.4 per 100,000.

Only Nevada recorded a decline — of 1 percent — for the overall period, although its rate remained higher than the national average.

...Overall, the most common method used was firearms.

...“When you do a psychological autopsy and go and look carefully at medical records and talk to family members of the victims,” (Joshua Gordon, director of the National Institute of Mental Health) said, “90 percent will have evidence of a mental health condition.” That indicates a large portion weren’t diagnosed, “which suggests to me that they’re not getting the help they need,” he said.


Jun 8, 12:47pm Top

Today, New Jersey passed sweeping gun safety legislation, including measures to expand background checks, reduce magazine capacity, and keep firearms out of the wrong hands.

On Wednesday, I'll sign these bills into law, establishing some of the toughest gun laws in the nation.

Governor Phil Murphy
‏Verified account @GovMurphy
2:31 PM - 7 Jun 2018

Edited: Jun 29, 5:55am Top

Jarrod Ramos, 38, identified as suspect in Annapolis (newspaper, 5 dead) shooting
Stefan Becket CBS News | Updated June 29, 2018, 8:57 PM

Suspect in Maryland mass shooting had long-standing grievance with the newspaper that was attacked
Matt Pearce and Richard Winton | Jun 28, 2018


"The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, ABC, CBS, CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!"
Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump 1:48 PM - 17 Feb 2017

"Prior to departing Wisconsin, I was briefed on the shooting at Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. Thank you to all of the First Responders who are currently on the scene."
Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump 1:49 PM - 28 Jun 2018


Mass-shooting Checklist (Annapolis, MD, TX, 5/288/2018 Edition)

___moment of silence
___flag at half mast/ETA
___overlay Facebook profile pic
X__condolences & prayers (Prez)
___reference deity

X__thank first responders, emergency depts., & police (Prez)
___"Now is not the time to talk about gun control"
___"We need police reports before we can talk about solutions."

___interview family, neighbors, coworkers
___blame mental illness, lone wolf
X__history of abuse (harassed a woman)
___celebrate heroes
___give blood, $

___Presidential visit
___blame others

___call for improved gun control
___investigate/improve processing of tips, warnings

___NRA: go dark
___NRA: issue "good guy with a gun" argument
___NRA: incite
___invest in gun stocks

___allow CDC to research gun violence?
___introduce meaningful screening of wouldbe gun buyers?
___ban silencers, automatic weapons, Saturday night specials, hollow bullets, bump stocks, _____?
___cover mental health?
___direct Justice Dept to address domestic terrorism?
___ban guns in public milieux?
___allow states/cities to protect their citizens?
___buyback firearms (per Australia)?


Edited: Jul 28, 7:30am Top

Guns are smuggled into Canada from the US but sounds like concern that they are now being stolen / transferred illegally within Canada. Years ago, a registry was scrapped under Stephen Harper's government as I recall... (ETA: gun used was from US. Gunman had Arabic sounding name, and ISIL claimed respsnibility but police are still investigating, and haven't yet ascertained a motive.)

Toronto Votes For A Total Ban On Handgun Sales After Mass Shooting
“Why does anyone in this city need to have a gun at all?” Mayor John Tory asked at a city council meeting on Monday.
Nick Robins-Early | July 25, 2018

After a mass shooting left three people dead, including the shooter, (and 13 injured) in Toronto on Sunday, the city’s conservative mayor backed a proposal that even the most liberal American politicians wouldn’t dare support ― a total ban on all handgun sales.

...The city’s motion, which passed 41-4, both calls on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government to outlaw the sale of handguns and urges the provincial government to ban handgun ammunition sales in Toronto. The council also voted for stronger prevention against gun sales for domestic abusers and people with mental illness, as well as a crackdown on gun trafficking.

...Under Canadian law, handguns require a special license that can only be obtained if the owner is a target shooter, collector or requires one for work purposes. They must also pass two trainings from government-approved instructors and wait a period of 28 days. Unlike in the U.S., Canadians do not have a constitutional right to bear arms.

...would require federal legislation. Canadian Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said the government is willing to consider the proposal but that it would require a complicated and significant rewriting of the country’s criminal code.



While ISIL claimed responsibility, police found no association. However, Danforth (Toronto) killer, Faisal Hussein associated with mental health, drugs, gangs, and guns, including one from the US: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/danforth-background-brother-records-1.4764742

Jul 26, 12:26am Top

>120 margd: “Why does anyone in this city need to have a gun at all?”

Well said.

Aug 6, 4:07pm Top

Cuomo responds after NRA says it may cease to exist: 'Too bad'

The New York Democrat’s remarks come days after the gun group said in a lawsuit it will be “unable to exist as a not-for-profit or pursue its advocacy mission” after the state of New York urged financial institutions and insurers not to work with it.
The NRA is currently suing Cuomo, the state’s Department of Financial Services (DFS) and Maria Vullo, New York’s superintendent of financial services, for allegedly seeking to hurt it.

The organization filed the lawsuit after DFS determined that the NRA’s “Carry Guard” insurance policy was illegal under New York state law and ordered insurers who provided the policy to not only stop selling it but to also pay a $7 million fine.

Carry Guard is "designed for people who carry weapons, and the insurance policy essentially insured them for intentional bad acts, intentional wrongdoing,” Cuomo said.

Aug 6, 4:12pm Top

>122 2wonderY: And the Daily News responds to NRA complaint:

"...our thoughts and prayers are with the NRA at this difficult time."

Edited: Aug 8, 6:31am Top

What age do mental health conditions develop at?
Aug 7, 2018

...50% of mental health problems are established by age 14 and 75% by age 24.

This was the finding of an American study (U of Michigan) that interviewed people to diagnose mental health conditions and asked them about when their condition began. The study’s authors said the findings were likely to be “conservative” and that some people might not remember when their condition started correctly...


Aug 9, 7:06am Top

More than 215,000 students have experienced gun violence at school since Columbine (1999)
John Woodrow Cox, Steven Rich, Allyson Chiu, John Muyskens and Monica Ulmanu | July 30 at 4:49 p.m.

Explore The Washington Post's database of school shootings
One dot • represents 10 children exposed to gun violence...

...at least 141 children, educators and other people have been killed in assaults, and another 287 have been injured.

In 2018 alone, there have already been 17 shootings — the highest number during any year since at least 1999. Still, school shootings remain rare, and only a tiny percentage of the tens of millions of students in America ever experience them.

...the disproportionate impact of school shootings on children of color. (2X)

...more than 85 percent of shooters brought guns from their own homes or obtained them from friends or relatives

...The median age of school shooters is 16...


Edited: Sep 21, 5:32am Top

Not a mass shooting (3), unless shooter suicide included (4), but this one is notable because shooter was female.
We don't need parity in this particular activity, that's for sure...

4 dead, including 26-year-old female suspect, in Maryland shooting
CBS/AP | 9/20/2018

(shooter was temporary employee at Rite Aid distribution facility in Harford County, Maryland 9am)

...Krystal Watson('s)...husband...told her that the suspect had been arguing with somebody else near a time clock after a "town hall meeting."

"And she went off," she said. "She didn't have a particular target. She was just shooting"...


Oct 24, 4:27pm Top

And as I was reading up on a mass shooting that was thwarted, the breaking news came on with one that is actually happening, also in Kentucky.

'Multiple injuries' reported in shooting at Jeffersontown Kroger

Oct 27, 1:01pm Top

Edited: Nov 9, 6:41am Top

Mass-shooting Checklist (Pittsburgh, PA synagogue, 10/27/2018 Edition)

___moment of silence
X__flag at half mast/ETA
___overlay Facebook profile pic
X__condolences & prayers
X__reference deity

X__thank first responders, emergency depts., & police
___"Now is not the time to talk about gun control"
___"We need police reports before we can talk about solutions."

___interview family, neighbors, coworkers
___blame mental illness, lone wolf
X__hate (online)
___history of abuse
___celebrate heroes
___give blood, $

X__Presidential visit
(planned, discouraged: https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2018/10/29/he-is-not-welcome-here-thousands-support-pittsburgh-jewish-leaders-calling-trump-denounce-white-nationalism/)
___blame others

X__call for improved gun control (3 mo. prior, rabbi: https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/27/us/synagogue-rabbi-gun-violence-blog-post-trnd/index.html)
___investigate/improve processing of tips, warnings

___NRA: go dark
X__NRA: issue "good guy with a gun" argument (President: post a guard)
___NRA: incite
___invest in gun stocks

___allow CDC to research gun violence?
___introduce meaningful screening of wouldbe gun buyers?
___ban silencers, automatic weapons, Saturday night specials, hollow bullets, bump stocks, _____?
___cover mental health?
___direct Justice Dept to address domestic terrorism?
___ban guns in public milieux?
___allow states/cities to protect their citizens?
___buyback firearms (per Australia)?


Oct 28, 7:36pm Top

Throughout most of the US anti-semitism is a vague adjunct to right-wing ugliness, a throwback, a way of 'rebelling' by being a Nazi and having a poster of Hitler. For the most part they hate blacks and other migrants of non-white race. They have no idea what a Jew is, have mingled with them without knowing it. This mass shooting is thus just that little bit more absurd.

Edited: Oct 29, 4:49pm Top

Trump plans to visit Pittsburgh tomorrow, even though he's been emphatically dis-invited by more than 35,000 people. Wouldn't it be interesting if everyone just turned their backs on him?

Thousands signed a letter saying Trump was not welcome in Pittsburgh. He plans to visit anyway.

Four boldfaced lines stand out from the rest of the letter’s 338 words.

“President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you fully denounce white nationalism.”
“President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you stop targeting and endangering all minorities.”

“President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you cease your assault on immigrants and refugees.”

“President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you commit yourself to compassionate, democratic policies that recognize the dignity of all of us.”


Edited: Oct 29, 5:03pm Top

>128 2wonderY:


Focusing on the suspect's schizophrenia obscures his racist motivation.

Oct 30, 10:06am Top

In Pittsburgh, the shooter is treated with care and respect

‘I’m Dr. Cohen’: The powerful humanity of the Jewish hospital staff that treated Robert Bowers

At least three of the doctors and nurses who cared for Robert Bowers at the Allegheny General Hospital were Jewish.

… Cohen told reporters that two of the practitioners who treated Bowers when he arrived at the hospital were Jewish: the attending emergency room doctor and a nurse, whose father is a rabbi.

“I will tell you that I’m very proud of them,” he said of his staff. “They did a great job. They answered the bell.”

He described talking to the nurse after the man treated Bowers. The two were in tears, Cohen said.

“He was pretty broken,” Cohen told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “I told him how proud I was. He went home and hugged his parents.”

Edited: Oct 30, 11:01am Top

It appears this administration can't get the tone right on anything!

Honoring Pittsburgh synagogue victims, Pence appears with ‘rabbi’ who preaches, ‘Jesus is the Messiah’

one Twitter response:

""Messianic Judaism" is antisemitism.
It is deceptive proselytising that sees Jews as in need of saving, and has Christians playact Jewish ritual.
Inviting one to speak publicly is not OK. Pence must apologize for this, or if he's OK with it, he's unambiguously an antisemite."
Jacobs’s remarks weren’t limited to the theme of religious solidarity, however. In addition to denouncing the “hate-inspired shooting at the synagogue in Pittsburgh” and asking God to “comfort all those who are mourning,” Jacobs appealed to the Almighty to favor the Republican Party in the midterm elections next month.

He did not name the individual victims of the Pittsburgh massacre, but named four Republican candidates, including Epstein. “I pray for them and for the Republican Party and its candidates so that they would honor you and your ways, that you might grant them victory in this election,” he said from the stage.

Edited: Oct 30, 1:25pm Top

Tone deaf, alright, or passive aggressive.

(That said, the most memorable wedding I've ever attended was my cousin's in Toronto, may she RIP. The invite directed us to Beth-something. Hers being the Protestant wing of the family, I thought maybe a Lutheran church? Excuse incorrect terminology, but there was an arch on the altar, the minister wore prayer shawl and yamulka, and my cousin and her new husband broke a wine glass underfoot. Okay, we're in a synagogue. Wait a minute, did minister just invoke Jesus??? Later, at the reception, we had guitar-playing Christians (folk) and fiddling, bearded guys playing that Jewish tune we've all heard, but whose name escapes me. The reception was in a Chinese restaurant and the owner surprised even the bride & groom by serenading them with karaoke! Memorable!)

Oct 30, 2:44pm Top

>137 margd: It's a Torah ark. See Wikipedia entry.

Oct 30, 5:14pm Top

This article, detailing Jewish preparation of bodies for burial, brought tears to my eyes.

At a Pittsburgh Crime Scene, Jewish Volunteers Guard the ‘Bodies of Holy Martyrs’

Oct 31, 1:13am Top

'We'll be there': Muslim community raises $70,000 for Pittsburgh synagogue attack victims

Wasi Mohamed, executive director of the Pittsburgh Islamic Center, says the muslim community has raised more than $70,000 for the victims of the synagogue attack and their families. Mohamed said: 'We just want to know what you need ... If it’s people outside your next service protecting you, let us know. We’ll be there.'

Edited: Nov 3, 12:38pm Top

>141 johnthefireman: FL yoga studio shooting

Hmm...“The practice of yoga is largely dominated by Whites, women, those with higher education and incomes, and young and middle-aged adults who represent a very narrow segment of the population.” (p 8 of https://c.ymcdn.com/sites/www.iayt.org/resource/resmgr/publications_pdfs/ijyt_2012.pdf)

These are demographics most likely to support Democrats.

The Democratic candidate for Governor of Florida is Andrew Gillum, mayor of Tallahassee, where yoga studio was located...

ETA Tallahassee’s murder rate has been an issue in the governor’s race, with Gillum’s opponent Republican former U.S. Representative Ron DeSantis accusing him of being weak on crime. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-florida-shooting/two-women-killed-in-florida-yoga-class-shooting-idUSKCN1N80BS

Edited: Nov 9, 9:03am Top

Mass-shooting Checklist (Thousand Oaks, CA Nov 8, 2018 Edition. 12 dead)

ETA: Cody Coffman, of Camarillo, was 22 years old: https://6abc.com/thousand-oaks-shooting-father-ids-son-as-1-of-12-slain-in-massacre/4647626/

___moment of silence
___flag at half mast/ETA
___overlay Facebook profile pic
___condolences & prayers
___reference deity

___thank first responders, emergency depts., & police
___"Now is not the time to talk about gun control"
___"We need police reports before we can talk about solutions."

___interview family, neighbors, coworkers
X__blame mental illness, lone wolf (police had been alerted to shooter's strange behavior earlier, but gun was legally purchased)
___hate (online)
___history of abuse
X__celebrate heroes (Sgt Ron Helus, RIP)
___give blood, $

___Presidential visit
X__blame others (>144 2wonderY: Fox guest says a victim should have tackled shooter...)

___call for improved gun control
___investigate/improve processing of tips, warnings

___NRA: go dark
___NRA: issue "good guy with a gun" argument
___NRA: incite
___invest in gun stocks

___allow CDC to research gun violence?
___introduce meaningful screening of wouldbe gun buyers?
___ban silencers, automatic weapons, Saturday night specials, hollow bullets, bump stocks, _____?
___cover mental health?
___direct Justice Dept to address domestic terrorism?
___ban guns in public milieux?
___allow states/cities to protect their citizens?
___buyback firearms (per Australia)?

X__repeat (one day later, at a NC high school...https://www.reuters.com/article/us-north-carolina-shooting/law-enforcement-responding-to-active-shooter-situation-at-north-carolina-school-local-media-idUSKCN1NE1FT )

Nov 9, 10:38am Top

In our area, since one of the girls graduated last year from one of our high schools, flags at half mast and interviews with family.

Nov 9, 10:52am Top

As a UK citizen I just can't get my head round why guns are not simply banned. No civilian needs NEEDS to have guns full stop, end of.

Nov 9, 2:08pm Top

>147 AdrianHall: As a US citizen I just can't get my head round why guns are not simply banned. No civilian needs NEEDS to have guns full stop, end of.

Nov 9, 3:26pm Top

NRA tweet warns doctors to 'stay in their lane' over gun control
Maggie Fox | Nov. 8, 2018

Gun deaths rose in 2015 after falling in earlier years, CDC says in a new report.

...Doctors and medical officials have increasingly taken on gun violence as a public health issue. Last month, the American College of Physicians issued new guidelines for doctors to follow in helping protect patients from firearms dangers, and published several reports on gun violence in its flagship publication, the Annals of Internal Medicine.

“We need to ask our patients about firearms, counsel them on safe firearm behaviors, and take further action when an imminent hazard is present,” Dr. Garen Wintemute, of the Violence Prevention Research Program at the University of California Davis Medical Center, wrote in one editorial in the magazine.

On Wednesday, the NRA took issue with the ACP, which represents more than 150,000 internal medicine specialists. “Someone should tell self-important anti-gun doctors to stay in their lane,” the group tweeted...


Edited: Nov 10, 11:21am Top

Mother of California Victim (0.46)

(no more prayers, no more thoughts--I want gun control!)


Nov 10, 12:21pm Top

For those of you calling for gun control, it already exists in California. Strictest gun control laws in the country, designed by Democrats, run by Democrats. And yet people keep dying. I wonder why?

When you write about it, you make it worse, because you contribute to the mythology. The press mythologizes mass shootings. And you make it worse by writing about it. You spread the virus and it becomes the norm. Potential shooters out there read what you write and they love it. Congratulations.

So you might as well stop saying you want more gun control and dig deeper into the problem. I suggest reading the New Yorker articles by Gladwell. It's OK. The New Yorker is left-wing. That means they know everything and you won't have to think. You can just read and obey.

The expression compassion fatigue comes from employees in health care. Taking it out of that context does everyone a great injustice.

Nov 13, 7:51am Top

A Third Rail No More: Incoming House Democrats Embrace Gun Control
Asma Khalid | November 13, 2018

...Following last week's elections, there is now a committed group of Democrats in the new House who will likely push for new gun restrictions. Still, such bills are highly-unlikely to pass a Republican-controlled Senate or be signed into law by President Trump.

"The House is now going to be the seat of power for Democrats at the federal level, so it's really going to drive the agenda for what the Democratic party stands for going into the primary in 2020," said Lanae Erickson, vice president for social policy and politics at the center-left think tank Third Way.

While any gun-related legislation Democrats might pass may never make it into law, Erickson says, House Democrats can show voters what their party would do if it gains more power...


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