Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016

The National Rifle Association wants to give me a “heavy-duty” duffel bag.

It’s a nice one, too — roomy enough for an AR-15 and maybe a half-dozen 30-round clips. Stitched on the side is a bold-looking NRA patch.

The bag is mine if I pay $25 and join up.

Like most gun owners in this country, I’m not an NRA member. It’s possible that Wayne LaPierre got my name off a mailing list from catalogs that sell hunting gear.

LaPierre is the NRA’s perpetually apoplectic “executive vice president.” You see him on TV preaching against gun control, practically levitating with paranoia. He signed the letter that arrived with the nifty duffel bag offer.

One thing about Wayne, he likes to underline. He’s also fond of boldface type, and of capitalizing important words. This rises to a fever pitch when he’s writing about “anti-gun members of Congress”:

And they will not stop until they BAN hundreds of commonly owned firearms, PROHIBIT private transfers of firearms, CLOSE gun shops and shows, and DESTROY your freedom to defend yourself, your home and your loved ones.

Here’s another beauty:

Remember, gun ban politicians and their media allies are on the attack. And the future of your freedom is at stake.

LaPierre might seem like an under-medicated wackjob, but he’s just acting. His job is to frighten people, and to sell more guns.

Major firearms manufacturers such as Smith & Wesson and Beretta have given millions of dollars to the NRA. Sturm, Ruger donated a dollar from every gun sale to the organization from May 2011 to May 2012, raising $1.25 million.

This isn’t mentioned in Wayne’s letter. He calls the NRA a “grassroots membership organization,” when in reality it’s a coldhearted lobby for the gun industry.

And the industry definitely gets its money’s worth. The push in Congress to revive the ban on assault rifles is dead and other modest reforms are in trouble, in spite of the nation’s horror at the massacres in Aurora, CO, and Newtown, CT.

The NRA scares politicians far more than it scares the average citizen. The senators who are now wimping out on broader background checks for gun buyers aren’t afraid for our Second Amendment rights; they’re afraid the NRA will bankroll their opponents in the next election.

Republicans cower most reliably, but spineless Democrats are in no short supply. A push to federally limit the capacity of ammo magazines to a mere 10 bullets is foundering strictly because the NRA opposes it.

Hunters and sport shooters don’t need 30 rounds to hit what they’re aiming at, but mass murderers, gang bangers and cop killers love those big macho clips.

  • One of the easiest ways for politicians and special interests to achieve their is to exploit the innermost fears and prejudices of the people. The NRA is well aware of that, and it does it often and without shame.

    • gahoof

      The hysteria from the gun lobby is what is extreme. My dad had a collection of guns. I don’t own a gun. Never have. I live in a part of the country where many of my neighbors do not own guns. I have asked high school buddies I’m still in touch with; most also don’t own guns. If I did own a gun, I wouldn’t carry it in the street, so how much protection would it serve if I did own one?

      • whodatbob

        Do not kno

        • RobertCHastings

          And it is a form of entertainment for many others, like Mark Kelly and his wife, Gabby Giffords, who do NOT support the confiscation of weapons or the abrogation of the Second Amendment. They DO, however, support legislation that would make universal background checks the law of the land, so that someone else like Jared Loughner doesn’t have the opportunity to legally obtain a gun.

          • whodatbob

            Yes and the backgyourd checks are done on all sales by FFL’s even when FFL’s sell at gun shows. Good luck enforcing a requirement for background checks on private sales.

          • idamag

            Background checks are not being done on those who buy from private parties at gun shows. I watched 60 minutes one night and the investigator went to several gun shows and bought guns without background checks.

          • whodatbob

            The investigator did not purchased guns from Licensed Federal Firearms Dealers. They were purchased from private sellers. Those are a minor portion of sales at gun shows. Most private salesare between relitives, friends, neighbors , hunting budies or budies at the range.

          • RobertCHastings

            I agree. But, if no attempt is made, then there will be no payoff. The vast majority of gunowners in this country support universal background checks, and they were rightly horrified by what happened at Newtown. Once they begin to realize that there is no move to universally confiscate guns, MOST, I believe, will be willing to acquiesce.

          • whodatbob

            We can only hope.

      • I guess that would depend on if someone was breaking into your home in the night whose intent was murder and mayhem? We gun owners are not hysterical, we do however recall history lessons we learned in school, have been to the holocust museum. Hiter also disarmed his people and what happened to millions of jews? look at what is going on in the middle east countries, they are begging us for weapons to protect themselves. In many cases of home intrusions, by the time you wake up the intruder is already inside the house, what if the phone lines are cut? who saves your family? how long before law enforcement arrives? In my case 30 minutes at a minimum, by then I am raped and murdered. Sorry, I do not choose to be a victim of some creep.

        • RobertCHastings

          You seem to so glibly pass over one very pertinent point, and that is that this is not pre-WWII Germany, regardless of what you may think there is NOT a dictator in the White House,and he is not backed by a lunatic-fringe Gestapo. Most of the rest of your post clearly expresses the fears many people feel, and that is precisely why there are NO PROPOSALS either by Biden’s bipartisan panel or the Obama administration to take guns away from ANYONE, only to prevent those who should not have guns from getting them. IF you already own a gun for self protection, you should know that there are no plans afoot to deprive you of either your weapon or your right to own that weapon.

          • idamag

            However, those lunatics are out there. People like Larae are scared paranoids and the NRA keeps them that way.

          • RobertCHastings

            And, like all CEO’s who bring great profits to their companies, Wayne La Pierre will be hugely rewarded.

        • ralphkr

          It would be better, LaRae, if you took the time to learn some history before posting. The Weimer Republic ruled Germany before Hidenburg & Hitler and had very strict gun laws. Far from disarming German citizens Hitler relaxed the anti-gun laws making it possible for all citizens except for Jews to be armed.

  • Melda Page

    LaPierre and the NRA are following the playbook of the Nazi party as they captured power in the early 30’s. They have a spokesperson who resembles a younger Hitler with the ranting oratory that influences people who don’t/can’t think. His ranting raises fear about all sorts of things–made up defamations of the government, strange (non-white) people, etc. He is turning ordinary citizens into a new army of Nazi brownshirts. He serves as an excellent frontperson for a fascist/capitalist cabal who want to run this country as a modern-day slave labor enterprise.

    • you are showing your ignorance with this. the NRA is trying to keep the constitution in tact as it should be. They also have many programs of safety, education, and recreation. If you are so current on your history you would know that without the NRA we could very well become the new generation of jews being lead to the railroad cars and camps of death. Did you not hear Joe Biden say this is just the beginning, they intend to take them all? how about Obama wanting the UN TREATY which specifically states “all ctizens must be disarmed” there is nothing about this government that well informed people trust, all with very good reason. Please look into what I have pointed out and see it for yourself

      • whodatbob

        It is impossible to discuss an issue with the brainwashed. News flash some student in Cypress, Texas attacked 14 people with an excato knife. Oh, I kmow we must band all excato knifes!

      • RobertCHastings

        The NRA could care a rat’s ass about preserving your Second Amendment rights, or, for that matter, ANY of your rights, as long as their supporters retain the right to make and sell guns. With 4.5 million members, the NRA has only about 305 million more to go. Neither they nor their shills in Congress represent the majority of people in this country, nor do they care about the rights of the rest of us. The NRA is NOT what it was thirty years ago, just like the Republican party is NOT what it was thirty years ago.

      • idamag

        Do some research. The NRA is bankrolled by the gun manufacturers. They a lobby to sell guns. They try to scare you so you will buy more guns and then they get more money from the gun manufacturers.

    • option31

      Okay this is a ridiculous statement that is nowhere based in fact inn fact the facts are the opposite. That should fit right in with this group. The NAZI’s, the KKK just like ALL racists have a history of demonizing guns a race etc and gun confiscation/registration implementation. Per an earlier post less than .005% of firearms are involved in homicides 300 million guns 14000 homicides. Who is fear mongering???

    • DEFENDER88

      Aside from the fact that you be-little the Nazi terror that actually did torture(in a hideous way) and murder millions, including little children, you offer nothing to help stop the killing in schools here.
      You probably dont even know just how bad the Nazies really were and what they really did.
      Do you really know what happend at Auschwitz, Treblinka, SobiBor, …..?
      Do even know what those places were, where they are?
      Disagreeing with the NRA is one thing and, in some ways, understandable, but calling them Nazies is a step way too far. And implying gun owners are Nazi Brownshirts is just ignorant(well worse, it is ignorant of ignorant).
      A common political tactic however(Try to discredit the oppostion) when you dont have good argument and proposals to stop the killing, especially in schools – ie people who either cant or dont want to *think*. This goes for you and anyone who agrees with you.
      And your reasons/causal factors why school mass killings are happening now and not before the 1990’s are??
      And your proposals for stopping the killing in schools is??
      Otherwise you are not contributing to a credible discussion with deflective, useless BS like this. Except to perhaps make “yourself” feel good.
      Some news – this mass killing problem is not about YOU feeling good and getting people in here to *Like* you.
      Or is it? Sometimes it seems so.
      Nor will it do much to help protect children from the mad men out there right now planning the next attack/s.

      • RobertCHastings

        And what are your proposals to stop the killings? Go out and buy some more guns, encourage your friends to buy guns, talk to your Congressperson about legislation to make gun ownership mandatory? That would do nothing except enrich gun manufacturers, and encourage them to funnel more money into the NRA – it would do nothing to stop the killing. In 1996 Australia endured a mass killing as serious as the one at Newtown, and they immediatley passed stringent gun control measures (much more stringent than what we are even considering) and, guess what – gun violence in Australia has plummeted since 1996. Coincidence? Studies clearly show that those localities and states with the toughest gun control laws have the lowest rates of gun violence. Coincidence?

        • DEFENDER88

          Robert
          You may recall we went thru this last time around.
          1) School Security – Secure the schools(somehow)(probably different for each school) to the point of being able to stop an active shooter.
          As a Last Resort*Fail-Safe* system. For now anyway until we can get the fundamental problems under control.

          2) The Drug Problem – Do *something* (not sure what) about the obvious link between young men on anti-depressants and the school killings. I showed you the connection data. Need mental health people to work on this.
          Again – ALL the School shootings in last 20yrs or so have been done by young men on anti-depressants or diagnosed as so.

          3)Australia – you cannot confirm/verify the data you are quoting
          The Australia situation is almost totally different from the US.

          4) State gun laws – I have not looked at gun violence by state lately, but recall where gun control was toughest all other violent crime was up even more. Same for some other countries.
          Nor does the Chicago example speak well for extreme gun control.

          5) What do you propose – Since you want to attack my character instead of the issues, what are *you* going to propose we do about the killing – “encourage your friends” to get legislation passed to confiscate all guns, and pass legislation to jail all current gun owners?
          Why do you waste time trying to demonize me(a FBI checked, highly trained, responsible gun owner) instead of adressing the issues?

          6) Since we had a mass(14) stabbing at a school today(by a young man) should we ban and confiscate all Exacto Knives(the reported weapon used)?
          Are you going to continue to attack me or address the issues, problems and potential solutions with supporting data?

          • RobertCHastings

            What did I say that impugned your character? IF I said something that could be construed as demeaning of belittling, I sincerely apologize. In the post to which I responded, you had said nothing about your plans to alleviate the problem of gun violence, in fact you have said very little about alleviating the problem of gun violence in this country except to assert that ALL school shootings in this country in the past 20 years have been carried out by young men on Prozac, etc., which does not address the overall issue of gun violence in this country. Probably the majority of gun violence in this country IS connected to drugs, but not necessarily from young men who are on them. Those who commit street violence are frequently NOT on drugs, just hormones. And, unfortunately, these people and their deeds add fuel to the fires of fear that seem to be pushing some of the opposition to reasonable gun control measures. Regardless, Adam Lanza would NOT have committed his heinous crime if adequate measures had been in place to prevent his getting the guns he had, be he on drugs or not. His mother was the one who LEGALLY obtained ALL the guns that Adam used. And the guns James Holmes used at the theater in Aurora, Colorado, were ALL legally obtained, even thoough there was a known mental issue with him. Your point about all school shootings in the past twenty years being committed by young men on drugs really reinforces the need to establish a list of those who are the medications you enumerate, and those who for whatever other reason (felony convictions, domestic abuse, etc.) simply should not have access to guns. As the incident today at the college in Houston so clearly demonstrated, put a knife into the hand of someone like Adam Lanza or James Holmes or Jared Loughner, and you just don’t have the body count that you get with a gun.
            The school security plan proposed by Wayne LaPierre would be prohibitively costly – in the neighborhood of $35B – something that, like universal background checks, will NOT be passed by this Congress. In addition, some localities ALREADY have armed security officers, and resource officers are frequently off-duty policemen. The presence on the school grounds of an armed presence will not necessarily prevent future incidents like Newtown. There is, however, a ready army of the willing, including parents who would volunteer to walk the halls of their child’s school, or even a few teachers (very few) who would be willing to be armed and trained. However, short of making existing schools into impenetrable fortresses, I don’t feel there is a reasonable solution to this issue that will meet everyone’s approval.
            Since you offer no concrete proposals on the drug issue, allow me to reiterate- take the guns out of the hands of these drug crazed children. Unfortunately, drugs like the ones you name have known side-effects, including the tendency of adolescents to react with some kind of destructive behavior. Until the bodies responsible for dealing with this issue (like the FDA, the AMA, the CDC) actually recognize it as a problem, nothing will happen unless people like us do online petitions (like the White House website). I agree, there is a problem with the drugs you name.
            I really don’t see the necessity in verifying the Australia thing for you. I believe you are competent to do your own research. And I am confident you will come to the same understanding that I did. The situation in Australia was basically no different from our own experiences, except that they have no Second Amendment to hide behind. The government that made the gun control decision was CONSERVATIVE, not a bunch of flaming liberals. They recognized a serious social issue and did something to correct it.
            I did NOT say or imply that ALL violence was down in those states that had the strictest gun control, I very specifically stated “gun violence”, and don’t even try to imply that the gun control led to higher crime rates.
            What do I propose? That should be quite clear. Universal background checks for ALL transfers of gun ownership. Guns should be handled like all other harmful substances, and they should be looked upon as potentially harmful. Please not that I used the word “potential” as opposed to inherent. Tobacco is a harmful substance, and with the vast majority of lifetime smokers, it is just a matter of time before the addiction leads to some serious health issue, and from someone who smoked for 35 years, I can honestly say it was an addiction, not a habit. Another proposal I have iterated is requiring all gun owners to carry liability insurance on their guns. If you own and drive a car I feel you have some understanding as to how this would work. This would, unfortunately, enrich the insurance industry but, with some wrangling, there could be a payoff with Medicaire. After all, they have already had their asses scratched adequately by the federal government with the $750B handout for the Bush drug program.
            Apparently you, like the TSA, see no harm in short-bladed knives. The kid did a lot of damage, didn’t he? He sent a lot of people to the hospital. However, two of the injured refused medical assistance and, so far, NO ONE has been sent to the morgue. Think what he could have done with a gun, like Adam Lanza, Jared Loughner, or James Holmes.

          • DEFENDER88

            Well you started out by saying to me: “And what are your proposals to stop the killings? Go out and buy some more guns, encourage your friends to buy guns, talk to your Congressperson about legislation to make gun ownership mandatory?” So, as a responsible gun owner, licensed, FBI finger checked, highly trained, competitive shooter, and gun liability insured, I consider that an insult to my character and intelligence.
            My research and proposals have been limited to the school shooting problems. There are more problems nationwide(as you say, with likely different solutions needed) but I am trying to discuss one problem at a time and potential solutions.
            There IS a connection with young men and drugs in the school killings that needs to be looked at by mental health pros and likely need more Govt help here.
            I did not say HOW the schools should be secured since it will likely vary a lot depending on the school and community. there are other ways beside costing a fortune.
            i agree with enhanced even universal background checks but not *universal registration* – leading to confiscation which it always does.
            But the DOJ says universal background cks cannot be done/effective without universal registration – that is where the rub is – my compromise solution would be a Fed Standard Universal system but run by the states like it is done now thru the FBI but based on a Fed Standard and I would even include a psyc test requirement.

          • RobertCHastings

            A program run through the states would, unfortunately, suffer the same consequences AFIS and CODIS experienced, before ALL fingerprints went into the federal database. Texas was one of the worst offenders, and in many instances fingerprint records from other states did not catch up with offenders in Texas until they had left the state, and only in those instances in which Texas authorities actually submitted their collected fingerprints to outside authorities. One centralized database of fingerprint AND DNA has led to the solving of many cold cases over the past ten to fifteen years. The current move to require all arrestees to submit DNA samples would go even further to reduce the number of unsolved crimes in this country, and the eventual pie-in-the-sky plan would be for one centralized worldwide database of such information, at Interpol or some other respected international organization. Centralized databases make the analysis of forensic data quicker and more efficient, which will result in removing more of the bad guys from our streets. This SHOULD include all pertinent data (including firing/ejection markings and rifling markings) on all firearms.
            I did spend some time researching you claim that virtually all school shooters over the past twenty years were taking a type of drug (such as Prozac) that MAY have had a deleterious effect on the mental state of the shooter. The only source I checked was a 2002 report by the US Secret Service, which indicated in their “profile of the shooters” that no such evidence exists. However, they did make the disclaimer that they used as general characteeristics of the shooters ONLY those traits that applied to the majority (more than half) of the shooters. A reasonable assumption from this information is that at least half of the shooters were not on anyone’s radar for mental issues, nor were they under the influence of the drugs to which you have referred. While this data is valid only through 2002, eleven years ago, it still covers a significant portion of the twenty year period you use as your baseline. Considering who conducted the study and who published it, I would be more inclined to accept their conclusions than I would be to accept yours. There is, however, ample evidence to indicate that in a significant number of more recent shootings the drugs with which you are concerned MAY have played a part. In the case of Adam Lanza, it cannot be definitively asserted that whatever drugs were being used to treat his anxiety actually adversely affected his behavior. In his case, the most important thing to remember is that he is autistic, and anxiety medication actually helps reduce negative behavior in autistic individuals – this from personal experience,which you are more than welcome to question.
            As for discussing one problem at a time and coming up with, consequently, a piecemeal solution, I feel a global approach is called for. As you have indicated, the issue of school shootings is a complex problem, involving many different factors, and many diverging solutions, and I am not looking for the silver bullet in one simple, holistic, solution. There will have to be a serious acceptance that a problem actually exists (which some in Congress are unwilling to do), a serious effort to identify all factors of the problem, and a concerted effort to achieve acceptable solutions to ALL the issues. Even a 1,000 piece puzzle is not complete until all1,000 pieces are in their proper places.

          • RobertCHastings

            I have just finished reading some articles on Dylan Klebold who, as you may recall, was a shooter at Columbine HS in 1999. Dylan was under NO care for any psychological condition, nor was he on any kind of drug regimen to treat anxiety, depression, or aggressive behavior. The article clearly states that Dylan Klebold was 1) under the influence of no drugs, of any kind, and 2) he had not been identified nor was he being treated for any psychological disorder.

          • DEFENDER88

            Thanks for your thoughts, info and research. I plan to do some more “digging” myself. Maybe Klebold was one of those who “should” have been in a treatment program? Another factor in this mental health issue is the understandable reluctance of parents to seek help for a child(the stigma) and/or denial and/or not get help when they do. I would advise Obama to have a panel/commission/whatever(true bi-partisan – even better – non-partisan) of mental health people(all areas including school counslers, etc) study this problem toward making recommendations. Just in general seems to me the mental health system in this country got fragmented about 20-25 or so yrs ago and no one group/agency is interested or tasked/funded or has any incentive to ensuring we and the patients or those “troubled” are protected and helped. Both We are protected from them and they are protected from us and themselves. Then there is the patient confidentiality issue compounding the problem. Even if drugs are not a major component in this(which I still think they may be) the overall Mental health issue IS a part of the problem that needs to be addressed. Clearly “something-mental” is wrong with anyone who wants to shoot/kill a lot of people. And there is a definite pattern of young white men(15-27yo) typically involved. And I wonder why not young *black* men also? All the killing is done by young White men. Except VT he was Asian. All of this even more reason to *somehow* secure the schools against an active shooter – and SOON. At least until we can ID the problem/s and solve/mitigate them. When I was in HS in the 1960’s this was not a problem, what has changed since then to create this problem? The one thing I am aware of is the *institutions* were essentially emptied in the late 1980’s? in favor of treating people at home and strong patient confidentiality laws were put in place – I’m not against that(confidentiality), just saying.
            And maybe you now know I am not a gun crazed redneck wanting to put a gun in everyones hands and take over the govt – although sometimes kicking all their asses out and starting over does have some appeal.

          • RobertCHastings

            The Wikipedia article “List of School Shootings in the United States” covers shootings back to the 1820’s. It is quite comprehensive and many of the articles referenced are quite insightful. There are links in the bibliography to all articles cited. While what I discovered does not appear to support the Prozac connection, there is a definite connection with mental health issues among almost ALL of the shooters, many of whom were never diagnosed or treated, but who should have been. Thank you for piquing my interest and sending me on this journey. It has been very enlightening.
            According the the National School Safety Center in in a 2010 article, there has been a significant decline in school associated violent deaths since the 1992-1993 school year. While the quite lengthy list of shootings included in the Wikipedia article seems to belie this point (over 100 such shootings since the 1990 school year), there were many more incidents prior to 1992 on an annualized basis than after 1992. Perhaps one of the clearest in my memory ws the Texas clock tower sniper shooting in which 17 people were killed over a period of hours.

        • ralphkr

          If course it wasn’t coincidence that deaths by gun decreased in Australia. It was just a coincidence that deaths by gun decreased even more in New Zealand & and USA than in Australia.

      • idamag

        Emotional people do bandy the words Nazi, hitler, and Holocaust around way too much. It is disrespectful to the victims of that horror. I suggest everyone read, “Dear God Have You Ever Gone Hungry?” and Elie Weisel’s night series.

        • John Pigg

          Thank you for that….

        • DEFENDER88

          I agree and for anyone else in here who wants to call someone a Nazi needs to consider this.

          I (like you) try to be careful about who I call a Nazi so as not to disrespect what the Jews were actually put thru and the scale of it.
          Or read the small paperback Auschwitz- Mostly recounts by Sonderkommandos(people(Jews) but also prisoners who had to work at the camps) who had to pull the dead bodies from the gas chambers).
          It should be required reading for Sr High School.

          Horror on a scale many today do not comprehend.
          TRY TO VISUALIZE THIS
          In clearing the gas chambers, they would always find a recurring pattern – a pile of bodies in an inverted cone/pyramid shape – Layers of people- the gas settled to the floor 1st then fill the room – the strongest would always fight their way to the top and be bloodied horribly in the struggle to get above the gas – babies on bottom, young children next layer, women next higher layer, young men next layer, grown men next to the top, strongest grown men at the top bloodied in the struggle to get above the gas and survive – all still, in the end, dead. But the human instinct to survive ie survival of the fittest prevailed. Not to mention the screams of terror

          A truely horrible sight as they describe it.

          Especially when they had to pull out family members.!!
          Unfortunatly – for many in the camps- that would have been humane!!
          The medical experiments on people – horribly disfigured and in agony.
          Everyday beatings, and worse.
          Lampshades and other articles made of human skin.
          Piles upon piles of starved 60lb bodies it took bulldozers to bury.
          And the starvation and disease – on and on.
          Horror on a scale many today do not comprehend.
          As they say – Never Again.

    • DEFENDER88

      For you and anyone else in here who wants to call someone a Nazi And gun owners like me – Brown Shirt Nazi’s – which you essentially say.
      You have well earned and deserve this below and need to consider this:
      You should be careful about who you call a Nazi so as not to disrespect what the Jews were actually put thru and the scale of it.
      Or read the small paperback Auschwitz- Mostly recounts by Sonderkommandos(people(Jews) but also prisoners who had to work at the camps) who had to pull the dead bodies from the gas chambers).
      It should be required reading for Sr High School.
      Horror on a scale many today do not comprehend.
      TRY TO VISUALIZE THIS
      In clearing the gas chambers, they would always find a recurring pattern – a pile of bodies in an inverted cone/pyramid shape – Layers of people- the gas settled to the floor 1st then fill the room – the strongest would always fight their way to the top and be bloodied horribly in the struggle to get above the gas – babies on bottom, young children next layer, women next higher layer, young men next layer, grown men next to the top, strongest grown men at the top bloodied in the struggle to get above the gas and survive – all still, in the end, dead. But the human instinct to survive ie survival of the fittest prevailed. Not to mention the screams of terror
      A truely horrible sight as they describe it.
      Especially when they had to pull out family members.!!
      Millions!!
      Unfortunatly – for many in the camps- that would have been humane!!
      The medical experiments on people – horribly disfigured and in agony.
      Everyday beatings, and worse.
      Lampshades and other articles made of human skin.
      Piles upon piles of starved 60lb bodies it took bulldozers to bury.
      And the starvation and disease – on and on.
      Horror on a scale many today do not comprehend.
      As they say – Never Again.

  • tdm3624

    I don’t believe the NRA is always right but still, without them, I doubt there would have been any supreme court decisions on the second amendment, and I doubt Americans would have the vast choices of firearms and hunting opportunities they have presently. As for the notion that the NRA is secretly funded and beholden to the evil gun manufacturers, well, I will put that in my conspiracy theory file along with black helicopters, the ‘gubmint is coming to take my guns, and muslims working toward sharia law in the US, etc.

    • A_Schick

      They’re not secretly funded by gun manufacturers. It’s very well known and out in the open that that’s who fund the NRA. MidwayUSA was their largest donor ($7.7million) in 2013. Beretta USA Corporation gave over $1million in 2013. 74% of donations from the NRA’s “corporate partners” come from the gun industry. It’s no secret.

    • RobertCHastings

      It’s not a conspiracy theory, it is fact. It is not a theory that Jessie Ventura would listen to, because it is the truth. MOST of the NRA’s funding comes from the gun manufacturers. The NRA is NOT what it was fifteen, twenty years ago, nor does it truly represent the interests of the vast majority of legal, responsible gun owners, who, unfortunately, are the ones being demonized in this discussion. The proposal for universal background checks deprives absolutely no one of his Second Amendment right to own a gun, it just keeps guns out of the hands of those who should not have them.

  • docb

    We need an AD that pictures all the children of the filibustering repubs ..Stating that REPUBS will NOT EVEN PROTECT THEIR OWN CHILDREN OVER THE LYING NRA arms dealers!

    This is reprehensible and cowardly of them all!

    • what part of constitution do you not get? there are enough gun laws now, they do need to enforce them though, maybe stiffen penalties for straw puchases and felons trying to purchase.. there already is background checks, what they do need is for doctors who know a patient is dangerous to be reported to ATF and kept from buying, but by doing that the govt will be in everyones medical records, legal gun owners already obey the laws, no amount of laws will stop a criminal or crazy person, they will always have guns even if they are all banned kind of like drugs and laws.. has not even slowed down the drug trade

      • RobertCHastings

        Yes, and we would still be walking around on foot if that first caveman had not taken the chance and invented the wheel, or jumped on a horse’s back. Or, to be absolutely honest, we would be under Nazi and Japanese domination if FDR had not had the courage to do what he knew was right, beginning with Lend/Lease. There are things in the world that will continue as they are until people take a stand against them. And you are absolutely right that these mass killings will continue, until people stand up and do what is right.

      • docb

        The laws were watered down by the nra arms dealer lobbyists.. Legal gun owners like Holmes in Aurora, Loughner in Tuscon, Hasan at Ft. Hood, the guy at VTech.. and Lanza in Newtown!!!Yeah right ..delusional with catatonic fact deprivation, bailey!

    • RobertCHastings

      Sounds like an excellent idea. However, many of them would probably consider it some sort of threat, eventhough the NRA threatens them every day they consider even DISCUSSING gun control. Those in the Senate who are bankrolled by the NRA have now threatened a filibuster to avoid even allowing discussion of the issue.

  • DEFENDER88

    “Polls show 90 percent of American favor background checks on all firearms sales, including those at local gun shows, which are currently unregulated.”
    If I read this right, it says all sales at gun shows are currently unregulated?
    Reads that way anyway.
    Actually, the great majority of sales at gun shows DO require a background check.
    All sales by gun *Dealers* require a background check.
    The great majority of sales at the major gun shows are by dealers.
    Its only the sales by private(individual) sellers that do not require a check.
    These sales are typically minimal(and done on the fringes) compared to the dealers sales at these shows.
    While private sales is an issue that needs debate(and it currenty is under scrutiny), it is not a major issue at gun shows.
    The great majority of private sales are done between family members, neighbors, black market sellers, etc. – but not at gun shows.
    There are enough more serious factual problems that need solved without mis-informing about the extent of this problem.
    Misleading information like this creates confusion and is not helpful to developing good solutions to solvlng the more serious problems with guns and crime.

    • option31

      You are correct, the gun show loop hole is a fallacy that is being used to scare people. IF you have a FFL and sell a firearm you MUST do a background check no matter where the sales takes place, you store, your house, your trunk it does not matter. The ONLY sales with no checks are private parties in which neither has a FFL.

    • Barbara Morgan

      You forgot to add that a background if it is done at a gunshow is only a 30 second check and is done by phone or a computer link and the people replying are only operators and can’t answer all the questions about a background check because they don’t have access to most files that the FBI use to do background check. This information is on the information part on gun shows and background checks on goggle.

      • DEFENDER88

        I have actually been thru the process several times. A FFL cannot approve a sale to you until you are cleared thru the FBI criminal data base, hence the computer link from every FFL to the FBI system. If an FFL sells a gun without this they will loose their license and likely be charged with a crime. I think the system should maybe be expanded to include psyc problems, etc but that is how it works now. And it *has* stopped many sales to criminals(dont have exact figures on this – some 2 million or so I think thru the years).
        FFL – Federa Firearms License, It takes a LOT to get one of these. The govt has to be sure you are not going to sell to blackmarket, gangbangers, and others as best they can determine who should not have a gun, plus running every sale thru the FBI system.

  • SaneJane

    When did Americans become such wusses that they need to be armed at all times? Here in Alabama one town just passed an ordinance requiring every home to have a gun. I feel that all the hysteria about right to bear arms is beginning to infringe on my right not to bear arms.

    • idamag

      Remember we used to sing the National Anthem and end it with “Land of the Free and Home of the brave?” Now it is the land of the scared.

    • DEFENDER88

      Gun and ammo sales are at record hights like never before.
      The NRA could only dream of promoting sales thru the roof like they are.
      In fact, what has driven sales to these levels is all the talk about bans on guns, ammo, etc – a lot of it from here even.
      People dont want to not have the option of getting a gun if they feel like they need one or may need one in the future.
      When and if the hysteria talk on Gun Bans ends the hysteria buying will stop.

  • JDavidS

    “Politics by fear and loathing” seems to be the Republican fall-back position. And it is practised to excess by the NRA as well.

  • I also noticed the writer of this article did not make anymention of Obamas UN TREATY which requires disarming all american citizens. He did not mention the NRA does not sell any guns, ever, but does like any newspaper, advertise for contributors. He does not mention all the excellant programs the NRA sponsors and provides free of charge in many cases. He does not menion that like all grand thinkers, if given a step into the door of gun control,they will never be satisfied,will never stop until they take them all from us. Smoking laws began the same way, a few steps at a time until banned completly. This newspaper man needs to go back and read his history, read up on the current laws on gun issues. He also needs to get his facts and survey results correct rather than try to tell us all that only 10 % of the citizens want these foolish laws stuffed down our throats. I short he is full of shit like Bloomberg and Obama

    • Barbara Morgan

      No you are full of it, there is no UN treaty requiring the disarming of American citizens unless they are terriorist then the treaty is to disarm them and arrest the ones that are supplying weapons to them. But you didn’t read that part of the treaty did you or are just repeating something that the NRA or Fox not News reported. The treaty your are talking about is a crackdown on people and organizations that sell or supply terriorists group with weapons and ammo so unless you are selling or supplying terriorists groups with guns, you can keep your guns. Since the NRA is responible for some many people becoming parnoid about having their guns taken away it should be paying for the mental health hellp that these people need because being paranoid is a mental illiness that can be dangerous to the person with the problem and people that are around them.

    • idamag

      He didn’t make any mention of it because it is not true.

  • option31

    And supporters of this are not fear mongering? The facts are their are over 300 million guns in private hands. Year to date their have been approximately 8177 gun deaths as follows, 4553 homicide, 3451 suicides, and 173 accidental deaths. So extrapolate that x’x 3 as were are 1/3 done with the year. WE end up with 25000 approximately. 13600 approx homicides, 10300 suicides 500 accidentals. So we have around .01% or 1/10 of 1% of firearms involved in various gun deaths. If we just take the homicides we are at .005%….

    and who’s demogauging the issue claiming all guns are a deadly threat ?

    • whodatbob

      Parnoid gun control zealots will ignor your stats becaue they are parnoid, your stats prove they are parnoid.

    • RobertCHastings

      Believe it or not, nobody. What should be a discussion amongst reasonable people has deteriorated into name calling and demagoguing, and a presentation of facts and statistics that are virtually meaningless. When safety designers came up with the idea of air bags, the auto industry screamed it would the cost of a new car beyond the reach of most people. Did that happen, and has the auto industry suffered from installing airbags? I don’t think so. Follow the money, on any issue, and you will see where the turmoil is coming from. The gun industry stands to lose money if fewer guns are sold, that stands to reason. About fifteen years ago, the weapons manufacturers were experiencing lagging sales and dropping profits, so they developed a new product and a new marketing strategy, directing their propaganda not toward those folks who already owned weapons (the traditional hunting rifle, shotgun, handgun), but toward those who DID NOT own guns. Figure that one out.

    • idamag

      Nobody ever claimed that all guns are a threat.

      • option31

        Then why the talk of bans and other controls? Feinstein has said she would ban them all and tell Mr and Mrs America turn them in. She doesn’t count? This whole thing reminds me of grade school – one kid gets out of line/does something wrong and punish everybody in the class. You’d think that attitude would be grown out of at some point. People that murder must be dealt with harshly but punishing innocent people is wrong and immoral

        • idamag

          We have a sick society right now. There are a bunch of paranoid cowards who think they need military type assault weapons to protect themselves. Scared people with guns are dangerous. Diane Feinstein’s proposals were turned down by both parties. She was not advocating taking guns from people. No one ever has. No one ever will. As for your analogy, the laws are not made because 99% of the people are honest. They are made to protect the 99% from the !%. You would not have gone into a mental institution and given the homicidal maniacs guns. Since Reagan closed the mental hospitals, those homicidal maniacs are out among us. A universal background check on buyers won’t hurt me and I have guns. Neither will banning assault rifles as I am not a paranoid. Remember, 26 people were robbed of their constitutional rights. They lost their life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.

  • FAIRFAX, VA—According to sources, local man Wayne LaPierre, an individual with a long history of unstable and dangerous behavior, revealed a detailed plot this week to bring semiautomatic weapons into schools. The disturbed man has reportedly been carefully planning this plot for months and has published numerous ranting posts to his website in which he lays out, in explicit detail, his desire to bring numerous guns into school hallways and classrooms. While the crazed individual has, as of press time, not yet acted on his plan, sources confirmed he has every intention of doing so in the near future and will stop at nothing to see his plot fulfilled. Additional reports have suggested that the unstable man may have also been helped in his planning by a number of accomplices in the United States Congress.

  • charleo1

    Every time the issue of guns enters the conversation, it’s always after
    a slaughter. And what can, or should be done to prevent the next one.
    The NRA gets on it’s bicycle, recites the Second Amendment, and urges
    people to respond to the tragedy by making sure they have a big enough
    gun, and plenty of ammo. And, warns the government just might limit some
    models. So, stock up! Don’t be the only one in your neighborhood without
    an AK,47, with a 100 round clip. Oh! And they make a great addition to your
    car, or office too! It’s insanity.