Category Archives: gun control

#StopGunViolence

Do you know what one of the most leading cause of premature death in the U.S is? Well, gun violence is one of the most leading cause of premature death in the U.S. Guns kill at least more than 38,000 people and cause nearly 85,000 injuries each year. There is this organization called APHA is a longtime supporter of violence prevention policies, especially with gun-related violence and APHA acknowledges an inclusive public health approach to addressing this growing crisis is necessary for good causes.

The issue of gun violence is complex and deeply rooted in our culture, which is why we must take a public health approach to ensure our families and communities are safe. We must focus more on the emphasis on improving gun injury and violence research. Conducting research will be a good first step in figuring out what is wrong in the present and how to prevent future ferocities. There would need to be ongoing work needed to ensure firearms do not fall into the wrong hands and to allow access to mental health services to the ones who need it most. Mental health is a personal issue but it should be a private issue and it should be shared with the public.

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To represent and support the “March for Our Lives” rally in Washington, D.C., animator Alex Clark used a bit of humor to explain gun violence prevention and hopefully, it will lighten up the mood of this post, enjoy!:

 

Number of Deaths in 2018
Map of Number of Deaths by Gun Violence in 2018 in the U.S.
In my opinion, guns should not be allowed anywhere in the U.S. because these kinds of weapons can be easily obtained and some people that have the right to carry or not commit suspicious or heinous acts.
To end this on a good not, guns should just go. Period.  #StopGunViolence
SENATE:

Enough Already; NOW is THE Time

Once again.

Sadly, once again, the hearts of the nation and many around the world are broken for loss of life and injury and fear wrought upon everyday citizens of the United States like you and I. 

I’m speaking, of course, of the senseless acts of violence committed against folks just out to have a good time in Orlando early this past Sunday morning.   I know of no other legitimate way to describe this act.  I know many are saying “Hate Crime,” and yes it certainly appears that the individual responsible was filled with that.  Many are saying “home grown terrorist” and blaming a faith for the acts of one of their members.  Many are crying foul as the shooter apparently was in the throes of a mental crisis, and I’m sure we’ll hear more on that as well as all the other possible reasons he did what he did.  I frankly don’t care.  I don’t care what label we put on this, or what name or association the press shares with us.  I simply call him what he is: a murderer.  He will go down in the current history books as the perpetrator of the largest act of gun violence in U.S. history for his actions. 

Continue reading Enough Already; NOW is THE Time

Is there a case study for stricter gun control in America?

Due to recent tragic events, Americans are faced once again with the issue of mass-shootings and gun violence. While stricter gun control is often dismissed as unrealistic, there is in fact evidence that such measures can work. After the 1996 massacre of 35 tourists in Tasmania by a man wielding a semi-automatic rifle, Australia instituted sweeping gun control measures including a buy-back of newly banned weapons.

So did the measures work? Below are two graphs from a 2010 study analyzing homicide and suicide rates in Australia.

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The data shows a significant decrease in gun-related homicide and suicide rates. Most effected by the laws were suicide rates, which fell fastest in areas where the gun buy-back program took effect earlier. In other words, Australia’s gun control has actually worked.

While this suggests gun control may be effective, it doesn’t make it more likely that the U.S. will adopt any such measures. Support for gun control surged in Australia after the 1996 shooting, but polls in the U.S. show we are still pretty evenly split on the issue. We love our guns, but we should perhaps take heed: Australia hasn’t had a mass shooting since 1996.

 

 

Students, Faculty, and Sitting Ducks

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Imagine for a moment….You are in class taking a difficult final for your sociology class.  The person to your left whispers and asks you if you heard something.  Boom.  You then hear the sound.  Boom.  Getting closer.  Someone screams in the hallway.  Boom.  You realize now it’s gunshots.  The shots are ringing closer now, seems outside of your classroom.

Stop! I have a bottle of Advil and am not afraid to use it!

What do you do?  Your backpack has your iPhone headphones, 3 pens, 1 mechanical pencil, a bottle of Advil, and 2 folders.  Boom!  What do you do!?  How can you possibly defend yourself with Advil?  How about an assault in the parking lot going to your car on campus?

Colleges have undergraduate students, graduates, high school students taking college classes, faculty, janitors, support staff, and guests.  Who are altogether sitting ducks.

We can begin to allow citizens who have legally obtained concealed handgun licenses to carry on all college campuses in America.

Legislation is Already Happening

         It is not a matter of if, but when the next shooting on a college campus will be. The legislation ball is already rolling.  According to this article, “In March 2012, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled that the University of Colorado’s policy banning guns from campus violates the state’s concealed carry law, and in 2011 the Oregon Court of Appeals overturned the Oregon University System’s ban of guns on campuses, allowing those with permits to carry concealed guns on the grounds of these public colleges.”

What happens while we wait?

I would hope and pray that no college student or professor would every have to use a firearm.  I carried a concealed firearm in Texas for several years and never had to pull my weapon (and hope I never do).  But, there is no better feeling than knowing I have a way to protect myself.  Even Texas has laws against handguns on college campuses.  So I guess we are at the mercy of police and security to arrive.  What happens while we wait for those long 1….3…10 minutes?

When an assailant with a gun attacks a college…I would hope I have more than a mechanical pencil to defend myself.  If you want to get involved in helping colleges allow concealed carry members to carry on campuses get involved at: concealedcampus.org.  Join on Facebook or donate today to keep the cause alive as a second amendment citizen.  If not, I understand, just make sure your Advil is loaded…

I’m Fascinated with Guns… BUT

Contributing to Critical Public Discourse- POST 3

I grew up with no guns in my house, or so I thought.

I knew where everything was in my parents house. My parents were Catholic and yet, I knew where they kept their condoms. We never talked about sex or cussed without consequence, yet I knew where my mom kept her Anais Nin and Lenny Bruce books by the time I was eight, wrapped in an old shirt on a high shelf in an unused closet in the basement. I was young. I was curious. I was a snoop and yet, I never knew we had guns in the house until my younger and only brother came of age to hunt- and my dad broke out the guns.

All of our lives none of us ever knew there were guns in the house. My dad showed a certain amount of low-key German satisfaction that he pulled one over on us for damn near 15 to 20 years. I was dumbfounded.

American Sharpshooter, Annie Oakley

One of them was a hair trigger, ornate, long-barreled pigeon gun. It was my mother’s mother Ann Carey’s gun, who everybody said I was exactly like though I never knew her. I was fascinated that my grandmother was reportedly a “good shot” and used the gun to provide food for her family. I was already fascinated with tales of strong women, Annie Oakley included. Years later, when reading “Pretty Birds” by Scott Simon, I discovered that in the Balkan War, it was common practice to recruit and train athletic, highschool-age women as snipers because they excelled at the occupation. I was curious. I wanted to try shooting a gun.

Jeb from the Beverly Hillbillies found oil with his gun.

When I lived in Tennessee, a group of what most definitely would be considered “rednecks” by Yankee standards, took me to their homestead deep in the mountains and let me shoot every gun imaginable: legal, illegal, modern, vintage, “kicking” guns I should avoid and easy ones they felt I could handle. I hefted World War II machine guns that American infantry would have carried and gained new insight at how heroic these men were by understanding the sheer weight of the weaponry they carried such long distances. 

Poke fun if you must, but my hillbilly friends were very serious about my training. They lectured me considerably on gun safety before I laid a hand on so much as a clip. They taught me about the safety and even if I knew a gun wasn’t loaded, to never, ever waive a barrel anywhere near or in line with a human body: the barrel had to be straight up in the air or down on the ground and son (yes, “son”) you better not get that wrong more than twice or you were an idiot that didn’t get to shoot anymore. Not only that, you were ostracized. Period. You were not to be trusted if you were reckless with something as simple as a gun. Let’s face it, we’re talking about a tool that is designed to kill. Life and death- there are few things more basic for any human being to understand.

It saddens me greatly to see stories like the one in the Star Tribune, “Kentucky Child Shooting Spotlights Urban-Rural Gun Debate.”  The article is about the death of a two year old girl at the hands of her five year old brother. The gun was sitting loaded and unattended in a corner when the boy got a hold of it. It was a Crickett “My First Rifle” .22 caliber rifle that was designed for a child.

If my redneck buddies were letting their children shoot guns, I’d assume they’d be tougher on their own kids then they were on me. I believe they would not allow their child to handle a gun unless an adult was closely present and the gun, as any of my Tennessee redneck would tell you, was unloaded and properly stored (aka: locked up with the safety on) when not in use.

Crickett Video Safety Faux Pas #1

Check out this promotional YouTube video from Crickett Rifles for Youth and Small Frame Shooters. I’d take you to the manufacturer’s website, but oddly enough, it’s been taken down for “routine maintenance.” Despite safety goggles, ear protection and a quick reference to safety features, at least twice in a very short video some really bad safety practices are going on, starting with the boy being given the gun with the barrel pointing at his sister’s head, and mom pointing the barrel at her son’s head later on.

Crickett Video Safety Faux Pas #2

Although I like to shoot, I have never killed anything. Someone loaned me a handgun (a Jennings J-22 with a pearl grip, aka “Saturday Night Special”) for an extended period of time and I could not get over a preoccupation with finding the safest place to store it since I had no locked cabinet- and I never was satisfied. Long before the debate over gun control, I realized I never felt so unsafe as when I had a gun in the house. I politely returned the gun to my friend after many months.

Here is a link to John Oliver’s hilarious interview with Phillip Van Cleve of the Virginia Civil Defense League. The interview demonstrates that hardcore gun advocates are against any form of gun control, even if it is simply good sense.

I have heard the line “with rights come responsibilities” uncountable times on the gun control side of the debate. I have nothing against guns but I do have a problem with unnecessary proliferation of innapropriate guns and the tragic number of gun-related deaths in this country. There’s always going to be stupid people and models of unsafe behavior. That’s why we regulate dangerous things. I’ve never heard of an IQ test being part of a background check, but perhaps it should be included. Certainly, passing a gun safety course periodically should be required as well as proof of secure storage.

Perhaps Darwinism will run it’s course. But even an idiot’s child should not have to pay the price.