This Weekend’s Shootings

Lots of gun deaths in the U.S. of A.  this weekend, including some bona fide mass shootings that have the gun absolutists blaming Obama and oppressive gun restrictions.

On Saturday morning a gunman killed three people, apparently at random, in residential Colorado Springs. The gunman was shot and killed by police, who as of Sunday evening still weren’t releasing details about who he was.

Note that Colorado Springs is hardly a “gun-free zone.” Colorado gun laws are pretty much anything goes; the only restriction I could find is that a permit is required to carry a concealed handgun. (There are no restrictions on openly carrying anything, it seems.) But the state can’t deny a permit to anyone who doesn’t have a criminal record, and the gun enthusiast sites all say that it’s very easy to get a concealed carry permit in Colorado.

Comment at a right-wing blog: “If just one of the witnesses would have been a concealed carrier the dead count would have been less.” We don’t know that they weren’t. And it’s safe to assume lots of people in that residential area had guns in their homes.

One person was shot and another wounded at Winston-Salem State University this morning. The gunman got away. North Carolina also has permissive gun laws, and guns are not prohibited from public schools, which Winston-Salem State is. No “gun-free” zone involved.

Lots of other shootings this weekend, most apparently either accidents (some Halloween revelers in Maryland and Delaware celebrated by shooting at cars) or random “drive-by” type shootings.  If you’re just standing around on a street minding your own business, and somebody decides to shoot you for the hell of it, I’m not sure what good a concealed firearm might do you. You might consider a really thick helmet and body armor, though.

Welcome to America.


23 thoughts on “This Weekend’s Shootings

  1. I inspect structural signs here in Florida. Most have bullet holes, even the signs attached to the sides of bridges.In the deep rural areas, the load rating signs are usually shot full of holes. Crazy, but true.

  2. I hate to say this but what else is new? Since I sold my house, I moved into a 55+ apartment complex. I think I better stay in my apt. Who knows how many of these geezers are packing? And they might be demented. Probably not safe in the halls.

  3. Soon, people will realize that guns aren’t enough to protect an individual and his/her family and property.

    So, I’m going to start selling landmines!


    No property is truly safe unless it’s sorrounded by landmines.
    Who needs a gun, and cleaning-up your house after you blow away the one(s) breaking in, if you can leave the corpse(s) of the dead in your yard to either rot, or be eaten by the wildlife in your area?

    Another plus, is if the neighbor’s little brat loses tosses a ball in your yard, instead of yelling at the little bastard, you can smile when you tell him ‘it’s ok to do it one last time but not to do it again.’ And know there’ll never be a next time!


  4. When I was in the biz of delivering mail as a rural carrier, the degree to which a route was truly ‘rural’ could be measured by the bullet holes in mailboxes.

    In DC last week – more on that trip soon – with a friend at the metro we chatted with a black guy wearing a beret. There is a chapter of the ‘Guardian Angels’ in DC. There was an associate in view, also in beret and they were packing cell phones.

    While there are undoubtedly trained, stable individuals who pack, and hone their accuracy regularly at the range and maintain a rational shoot-don’t shoot ethic, in all states with permissive gun attitudes, most people who pack are not competent, particularly in an emergency. A pinhead with a 45 and a permit is a hazard to everyone in range whenever the pinhead thinks he’s identified a ‘bad guy’.

    Speaking only for me, I don’t object to a citizen having a weapon, or even a concealed carry permit. The problem is that the bar is set so low that there’s no assurance for the general public of any competence whatsoever. An automobile isn’t designed to be lethal, but it can be and we require training, a written test and driving test before we allow a car owner to use public roads. Carrying a lethal weapon in public should require no less.

    Standing up for the innocent and defenseless wearing a beret and packing a cell phone takes courage. Buying a gun that you don’t know how to shoot, and spending $50 for a permit to pack, when you’ve never seriously contemplated the ‘shoot-don’t shoot’decision is all ego – pure fantasy and a tragedy waiting to happen.

  5. From what little I can find..this guy was pretty much screwed up…His daddy was/is in a religious cult of some kind…and this is in the land of the Crazy Corner of Colorado…Dr. Chaps, calling Dr. Chaps…

  6. This time of year the number of audible gunshots seems to increase in preparation for hunting season. We also have a “Beagle club” adjoining our property. They get together on weekends for dog related events. They fire a lot of blanks to get their dogs used to the sound. Add that to the hunters and marksmen, and the restful country atmosphere is not always so restful. That’s not going to help if we decide to pick up our stakes and move on. Neither are all the “bunkers” packed net-confederate troops flying their colors.

    We were thinking seriously about moving to the EU, and we are still considering it. One of the big motivators is the gun culture here in the south. The National Front “gives me a cramp” as my father used to say, but they’re not armed like the baggers.

    Like some of you, I don’t object to people owning sporting guns if they are competent and responsible. But, so many Second Amendment enthusiasts clearly seem to be half a bubble off plumb. Maybe I need to dig out that Rosetta Stone again.

  7. Which corporate-controlled investigative agency will be charged with the process of determining the suitability of those deemed capable or incapable of responsible firearms ownership? Please provide a list of approved law firms which will guarantee a paying customer the right to own a firearm. Price is of no concern.

  8. I was behind a pickup truck this weekend, it had a NRA “stand and fight” bumper sticker, I thought to myself shouldn’t that really say “NRA cower and shoot”? It is amazing that a group that represents so few people, less than 3 percent of the population, has so much sway over our lawmakers, it really is the epitome of American political corruption!

  9. I view the problem as we are living in a “gun culture”. I can’t say I know what goes on in a person’s head when they decide to have a gun(s). My son-in-law has a collection of guns and he also has a concealed carry permit. He keeps his guns locked in a huge safe and he’s not a hunter but he likes target practice. Why he feels in need of a gun in public I don’t know. I’ve never had that conversation with him. IMO, he is a responsible gun owner. One thing that bothers me though is when people refer to guns as toys. The difference between a gun and an automobile is that a gun is a weapon. It has no other purpose than to kill or maim. I respect everyone’s right to defend themselves but what is going on in this country really bothers me. It scares me.

  10. Maybe we had something like a political discourse at one time. But, whatever we had seems to have degenerated into a game of chicken where each attempt at solving a problem is met with a more extreme position. Evidently, the right wing has found this to be a successful strategy, especially in the areas of gun rights and abortion.

  11. I view the problem as we are living in a “gun culture”

    I’m not so sure it is a gun culture, lots of people have owned guns for a long time, myself included. I think whats driving the gun hysteria we see now is more of a fear culture. The NRA and gun manufactures have been masterful in passing laws (stand your ground, castle doctrine, etc) that allow people to think they have a legitimate “right” to shoot someone else without fear of consequences. Once you plant that seed (particularly in an uninformed teabagger) that everyone else will have guns to protect themselves then of course you’ll need one too. Add to that the propaganda that comes from the NRA after every mass-shooting that Obama is gonna take your guns, you have what we have now, lots of people who never had guns before and have no clue how to use them safely suddenly buying them like hotcakes. I agree it’s pretty scary.

  12. This morning’s Denver Post reports that someone called 911 before the first shots were fired to report that a man was carrying a large firearm, but the 911 dispatch said that Colorado is an open-carry state and that no action could be taken because the citizen was acting legally. Very shortly afterward, the first victim, a cyclist, was shot dead after unsuccessfully pleading for his life.

    Open carry laws have consequences. We will see if this aspect of the story, buried in the middle of a paragraph, receives more attention.

    Should I hold my breath waiting for this to happen?

  13. Uncledad: I agree that fear is the driving force in the need to have a gun. By gun culture, I think I mean that guns have been the answer to all fears. If you have a gun, you’re “safe” even if all the evidence proves otherwise. Of course, the NRA and gun manufacturers just want to sell guns. However, if I have to have a gun to feel safe, it won’t work for me. I would be even more paranoid that someone was out to get me and I might do something really stupid. Probably true of a lot of those people who do own guns.

  14. It seems delusional to all of us that the “good guys with guns” seem so cocksure of being able to sort out who is the bad guy and take appropriate action. But, the other side of that is that they seem just as sure that they can strut down any Mainstream, USA with a weapon in full view, and everyone will instinctively know that they are just a law abiding citizen. When the bullets start flying in some tragic event, no one will ever suspect them of being a bad guy, because somehow, their good intentions and pure heart will be readily apparent.

    Maybe they’ve been watching to many action films.


    It’s being reported that a citizen called 911 to report the Colorado Springs shooter carrying a rifle outside her home. Because of “open carry,” the 911 dispatcher couldn’t do anything. The shooter then randomly murdered a passing bicyclist, and finally two women he also didn’t know.

    White guy, armed, stalking: no problemo. Black guy, unarmed, walking: shoot the bleeper.

    The question for me has become: which candidates can I elect next year to reverse this insanity?

  16. I repeat myself. I don’t understand concealed carry or open carry. If a weapon is concealed, nobody knows about it. If it is open carry at least someone can be forewarned. Although a lot of good it did in the above case. Not that I want to see people walking around carrying weapons but I would rather be aware of a weapon than to have it concealed on someone of whose intention I have no clue. If I can see a gun, I might steer clear of it, might even run as fast as I can in the opposite direction. With a concealed weapon, it is a different story. How about no weapons in public places? I just don’t see the reason for someone to carry a gun. A weapon in a home for protection I can understand. But then to be safe, they have to be unloaded and locked up so one cannot get to one in a hurry. So what is the answer? I’m sure I don’t know.
    “Which candidates can I elect next year to reverse this insanity?” I feel sure it will take more than an election.

  17. joanr16: it appears that we had the same question. Denver’s local channel 9 will be covering this story tonight; I hope that the network picks it up as well.

    We need to elect candidates who will modify the open carry law to stipulate than any bad guy who openly carries a firearm must wear a large sign or visible emblem reading “BAD GUY WITH A GUN” so that the good guys will know to respond.

  18. The NRA was able to convince the right politicians and judges that the second amendment was all about individual protection and not about the ability of the state to protect itself from external threat with a citizen militia. The gun manufacturers were able to use that to allow them to manufacture and sell almost anything they wanted without fear or consequences. Imagine the chaos if an amendment said that the people had a right to unrestricted travel and the car manufacturers took advantage of that to remove any and all car licensing, safety, and road restrictions.

  19. Congratulations, KY!
    You just voted against your best interests, and put that sociopath Bevin in the Governor’s Mansion.
    Who needs affordable health care, amiright!?!?

    Mark Twain once famously said, ‘When the wold ends, I want to be in KY, because it’s always 20 years behing.’

    Stay well KY!
    Now you can’t afford to get sick.

    I’m sorry, but I can’t help last laughing for a while at the expense of these rubes.
    And yes, I guess that makes me a bad person…

  20. “White guy, armed, stalking: no problemo. Black guy, unarmed, walking: shoot the bleeper”

    Hell, white man armed with an assault rifle aiming at federal agents (Bundy Ranch) no problem, 12 year old black kid aiming a toy gun at a garbage can (Tamir Rice), shoot him dead!

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