Wednesday, February 21, 2018

I Was Going To...

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Write a post about the Florida school shooting...

Then I realized that nothing I write or say will solve any problems in this world.

I thought about the three kids, JROTC cadets, who died trying to save their classmates. They're the kind of kids who, if they had had the chance to grow up, would have been the kind of people who run into danger to try and halt its spread, its impact. Then it struck me, they were already that kind of people. I was going to write about them, then I thought, "What about the other 14 who died? What about them?"

Then it struck me, what about the kids who get gunned down everyday in the streets of Chicago, in Detroit, heck, even in Providence here in Little Rhody? Where is the outrage at their deaths? Are their deaths somehow less worthy of note then those folks who were gunned down in Florida? At a school.

Shortly after that church shooting down in Texas, one of the ladies of my church asked me, "Could that happen here? Is there anything we could do to prevent that?"

My first reaction was, "No, can't happen here." The I realized that yes, it could happen here, it can happen anywhere. Like I told her, all we can do is stay alert. Short of having armed guards though, there is no way to prevent such attacks. But having armed guards would only lessen the damage done. In the time it takes to realize that someone is armed and is about to open fire, it's already too late. They are going to get rounds out before a good guy can react.

On the other hand, if they know that there are other armed folks about who will return fire, it might deter them. It might not. It depends on the situation.

The calls for "sensible gun control" always flare up after these shootings. What does that mean?

Not allow felons to have guns? That's already the case, that law is on the books. Hasn't stopped a felon who wants a gun get a gun, has it? Recreational drugs are, for the most part, illegal. Does that prevent people from buying and using them?

Driving while intoxicated? Illegal.

Theft? Illegal.

Sure write a new law, that'll fix everything. After the Station Nightclub fire here in Little Rhody, 15 years ago, there was a hue and cry that new laws needed to be passed to prevent such a thing from ever happening again. Those who pointed out that if the existing laws had been enforced then the fire might not have happened were either shouted down or ignored. Would enforcement of the laws already on the books have prevented that tragedy? Maybe. But you can't legislate against stupidity. Like Forrest said, "Stupid is as stupid does."

The world can be a horrid place at times, even here in the U.S. of A. But there are places that are far worse.

I have no answers. I will say one thing, all of the gun control laws currently on the books are unconstitutional for the most part. What's worse is that many of those laws are completely ineffective.

Do I think a person should have some training before owning a firearm? Yes, yes, I do. But who provides that training? One's parents, the military (I had both), the police, the State itself (whatever that means, probably a new bureaucracy which would quickly fill with useless bureaucrats)?

Common sense is really rather rare when you think about it.


  1. Amen to what you said Sarge. Only two points I'll add, breakdown of the family(no fathers involved for whatever reasons) and issues between the ears in these shooters.

  2. I started shooting when I was 5. Old Springfield bolt action. My dad was known to hit tin cans at a 100 yards with it. I remember it like it was yesterday. Graduated to my own 22 when I was 12. My job as a kid (started when I was about 8) until I had my own job was to prepare dad's police uniform, and clean his 357 Smith every other day. I did that without oversight after the first few times. I was proud of my dad's appearance when he went to work. I knew his firearm was clean and functioning perfectly.

    My little brother didn't get that kind of hands on instruction. He wasn't as interested as I was. He dug dad's off duty gun out and touched a round off in the house one day. I think dad must've had him out back for a couple weeks, training him and coaching him on gun safety, and target practice. We had an old stump back there that was just about toothpicks after they finished. I think that was his last negligent discharge.

    One area that is overlooked is the use of Psychotropic drugs that have warnings about "homicidal ideation". If only a vanishingly small amount of young men on them act that out, it's a sizable number. And almost every mass-cal event since Columbine has those in the mix. Heck, almost every teacher that sleeps with her students is on an anti-depressant that has similar warnings about "reduced inhibitions".

    Absent fathers can't teach their sons, and the sons of absent fathers can't teach what they don't know. To really FIX the issue is undoing the decades of moving fathers out of their children's lives.

    I remember hearing a man say that if you fight a dog, you WILL get bit. I believe keeping the round count low is the best we can hope to accomplish in an event like Florida. That takes prepared people, salted throughout the venue. Not just a token armed guard. Much like Jeanne Asssam in 2007.

    Freedom isn't free, and it isn't safe either. America was a place of freedom, but our culture now wants safety. I'm afraid we won't have either once the emotions run their course...

    1. Spot on. When did this country go from "Give Me Liberty or Death" to "give me safety"?

    2. Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

      Lyndon Johnson's "Great Society" destroyed many black families. Now his spiritual descendants (progressives and socialists) are working hard to destroy ALL families.

      And damn it, they are succeeding.

    3. Oh, one more thought, anyone on drugs which modify behavior really need to be closely monitored. If a side effect is "homicidal ideation," then those folks should be hospitalized while they're taking those. This is the first I've heard of those, dear Lord what are some physicians thinking when they prescribe this stuff? My doc is extremely careful when she prescribes my meds. Though I managed to quit smoking using Chantix, I had some very weird and colorful dreams, friends of mine who tried it said they had thoughts of suicide (from what I understand that is a side effect of the meds). My doc warned me up front about those side effects.

      Homicidal ideation? Holy crap! One of our biggest problems in this country is mental health, as families are destroyed and replaced by the State, it will only get worse.

    4. Again, I completely agree. Now, the Democrats are dragging the children to state and Federal legislatures, to have the children ask for the banning of guns. Because children never let emotions cloud thier thinking.

    5. There is no level the DemonRats won't stoop too. (But I could say the same for a number of Rethuglicans as well.)

  3. There has been a breakdown in family values, since eve tempted Adam. So, that's not it. Good guy vs. bad guy? On the singles, a lot of that around mAh neck of the woods is gang related. Unfortunately. And the rinse and repeat factor. Some is I'll, some are in an uncontrollable rage mentally. And, then there is the factor, that many of those here, are pushed out of where they were from, and even apes, kill other apes.

    1. Yeah, there are times that I think it's a problem for which there is no good solution.

  4. Part of the challenge to finding a solution is there are far too many who want someone else to do it so they can just continue as they are.

  5. Gun "Control" tends to upset many folks. I prefer to call it "stronger gun legislation." Will stronger legislation stop the problem? Of course not. We have laws against robbing banks and yet banks are robbed everyday, but would more banks be robbed if it was not illegal? I'd guess yes. Reasonable laws fairly enforced would lessen gun violence, we just would not know about it because things that never happen seldom make the news.

    What should these reasonable laws be? Hell I don't know, I don't like guns, don't own guns and have never even fired a gun. I think intelligent people who do like guns, own guns and occasionally fire them should figure out regulations to make it less likely for the wrong people to have access. I'm not sure what is constitutional and what is not. I certainly don't want my next door neighbor to have a loaded howitzer or tank in his garage, could we start from there?

    1. We already have fairly reasonable laws. Having the right gun law is not the problem. Enforcing what we have might help.

      As to Constitutional, tanks and howitzers are not banned by the Constitution. There's reasons for that. Let me take you back to Lexington and Concord in 1775...

    2. A howitzer, or a tank's main gun has a $200.00 per round tax on each round fired, as they are Destructive Devices. Even if you could afford a used WWII era gun, the ammo is far too expensive.

    3. And that is, I would argue, unconstitutional. It certainly infringes upon the right to have such a weapon.

      Remember the British were marching to Concord to seize cannon, not muskets.

  6. It was like a punch in the solar plexus...knocked the breath out of me.
    ...took me awhile.

  7. Many moon ago, in Aunchient Tymes, there were these things called 'Mental Hospitals' or 'Nutte Hauses' that purported to house and assist mental patients. Thus the number of the medically 'walking dead' were few amongst the general population (that, and the more accessibility of easy ways to accidentally die when 'walking dead.'

    Unfortunately, our 'great society' has gotten rid of these institutions (I know, some of them were horrible freak shows, but many weren't. We as a society cut off our head to spite our nose.)

    Though I truly don't know what the answer is.

    I do know that if the vaunted FBI had spent just a few precious moments of their time on the tip they received, rather than spending it on trying to cover their collective ass over illegal crap that should get most of the senior management shitcanned or imprisoned, well, the world might be a brighter place today. Funny how they can set people up, twist conversations of old guys at a coffee shop to make them out to be frickin Bin-Ladins, but can't stop one actual criminal. Arse-holes.

    Yeah, that really is what burns my biscuit. The laws that constrained the school from getting the kid the legal help he needed. The laws that constrained the local cop shops from shoving this kid into a holding facility of some type. The laws that the FBI are cowering behind (while breaking other laws left and right. How exactly did those Flynn interviews go, Mr. Fibbie?)

    From what I have read of the attack, many of the adults and many of the students acted in the best traditions of our great county. Running into fire, doing their best to help. I am sickened that those adults and students were hobbled by 'feel-good' laws and regulations that basically left them running into hell with no prayer of survival. That they saved so many is truly blessed. There's a lot of shame on the school system for its refusals to send criminal cases to the local PD, only handling it by inhouse paperwork. Lots of shame on the local county's laws and the local prosecutors that tied the hands of the local PDs.

    Sad that the only ones that came out of this covered in glory ended up covered in Old Glory herself.

    1. And nothing more needs to be said, I think you've covered it all, and very well, Andrew.

      Thank you.

  8. in a country of 300 millions, there are 300 one-in-a-million walking bombs with easy access to guns... most of the checks on buying new guns are not going to help since they can pretty easily buy second-hand 0nes or just steal from anyone unattentive enough while in possession of their guns, in case of teenagers most probably own parents...
    considering attachment of the large segment of society to gun ownership i dont see any real way to stop this recurring nightmare short of civil war with millions o dead, a definite casus of cure worse than medicine...
    all of the models of gun ownership are usually deeply ingrained in the country's history and culture, to be honest. hence for example japanese model is product of 300 years of shogunate policies, which confiscated even swords from most of the population, and firearms even from the warrior caste... not really applicable to US society
    my own country has quite low gun ownership ratio, mostly because for much of history guns were restricted to nobility, who preferred sabers anyway, and then partitioning powers didnt trust Poles with guns at all...communist times didnt help the cause either, unsurprisingly.

    1. Can't imagine a Russian, or a German for that matter, being comfortable with armed Poles.

      You guys fight back!

  9. While I don't have many answers I do know the unbridled and vile bloviating by the gun control crowd makes me reject anything they say.

  10. The issue is the mental health system, or lack there of. And yes, doctors prescribe every day all sorts of meds that have potentially nasty side effects. However, not everyone gets every side effect. The local cops are constrained by the fact that until this person committed a crime, or was found to be a danger to himself or others, their hands are tied. Furthermore, jail is NOT a good place to deal with mental health issues, unfortunately more and more folks wind up there that have mental health issues. I watched my grandparents go through hell trying to get help for my uncle, who after taking a class with Timothy Leary and dropping some LSD one time, wound up with schizophrenia. Which took YEARS to get a handle on, wasn't until new meds came out, and a new program of close supervision was opened up in the area where he lived that he finally stabilized.
    I agree with Andrew, that the closing of many facilities across the country worsened the problems of those that need close supervision, and structure to obtain the best behavior outcomes possible. When it works, it is great. When it doesn't, it truly is a horror. And there are no where near enough slots available for the folks that need them.
    There is a huge need for a total overhaul of the mental health system. Start there. Leave the regulating of guns, knives, cars, planes alone. There are already entire libraries worth of laws on the books regarding those items.
    Get the help to the people that need it, not more item regulation.

    1. Well said Suz. It IS a mental health issue.

    2. How many of our young men are taking psychotropics? If 10 million are, and only 0.01% are dealing with suicidal or homicidal thoughts, that's a 1,000 potential time bombs. It's the scale, not the small percentage that makes this dangerous.

      (early morning maths should be triple checked before posting!)

    3. And they're scattered throughout our towns and cities...

  11. When I was in college, back in the late Triassic, the State of Wisconsin passed legislation, freeing most of those who had been committed to Mendota Mental Health Facility, as it was wrong to lock up people for being sick. Withing six months, a released patient had knifed a man to death in James Madison Park, as the releasee was convinced that the victim was a demon.

    have you noticed that the majority of the school shooters have " Charlie Manson Eyes"? And were on ritalin or other drugs to make them more compliant in school? I was a daydreamer, in school, and would probably be medicated, like my nephew Eric was, to make me more compliant. But in my day, the teachers would just tell me to pay attention, and that would snap me out of my reverie. The teachers don't want to teach little boys, who daydream, and roughouse, they want to teach quiet, obedient little girls, and will cherfully medicate the little boys to get them that way. God, how I dispise the Progressives.

    1. Effing politicians of nearly all stripes make me sick. They do things to get re-elected, NOT for the benefit of the people they represent.


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