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December 18, 2012

Comments

wisewebwoman

Here in Canada, we have our own issues, Hattie, but we are absolutely gobsmacked at the gun-toting, sharp-shooting, kid killing(and I'm not just talking the US but its other-country child killings)country it's become where no healthcare is available for the mental health of young adults like Adam. It's like the Wild West to the power of assault weapons.
Assault weapons??? Are they used for the killing of say, the cliche fox in the henhouse??
something has to be done. Starting with the drones and then heading towards home.
Ye gads and little fishes.....
XO
WWW

Hattie

wisewebwoman: It's a big business. There is so much money to be made.

Rain Trueax

I am beginning to blame liberals also for this who are dividing their issues. Go after what was part of this killing-- assault rifles; the one in the Oregon mall-- assault rifles; assault rifle-- Aurora, Colorad; extended magazines -- when Gabby was shot in front of a store where I routinely also shop.

I heard that Dana Milbank said nothing will happen because Americans are too short-sighted, won't stay with this, and the NRA is well situated to fight it. If it doesn't, I think it won't happen because as usual liberals cannot agree on what might actually be able to be done.

Maybe instead of people liking to be shot or enjoy being frightened or to know somebody else got shot, maybe it's about wanting a 'cause' but never resolving it.

The country will NOT get rid of all guns. The cities, which have the most stringent gun regs also have the most shootings mainly because of gang and drug violence. I am all for better gun regs but why not start with what might help?

When you and others attack all gun owners, you don't win this cause. You might satisfy yourself, you might feel one with all the lefties who are going off on this, but it won't get assault rifles off the street. I suspect the NRA counts on this shooting ourselves in the foot mentality that ends up getting nothing.

I think there is a motive now to end assault rifle possession and at least sale and resale if not ownership. We might get back in place what Clinton did. Start there unless the real motive is to keep having such episodes that end up eventually somehow miraculously causing all Americans to say yes, i will get rid of my guns. It won't happen, and even if all law abiding people did, the crooks, the ruthless killers, and the survivalists won't.

As usual as liberals, we are subdividing ourselves. The country is divided anyway with those who want more guns for everybody. Now those who want assault rifles gone have to see their cause diluted by those who want all guns gone. All people who have guns do not misuse them. Most treat gun ownership responsibly. I live in an area where everybody has guns and it doesn't terrify me because it's where people know how to use them safely. What terrifies me is when city folks, who are ignorant and careless with where they shoot, come out from the city to go hunting. Most of what goes wrong with a gun is by someone who is ruthless or simply ignorant of their use.

Hattie

Rain: Guns are repulsive. There is nothing good about them. At best, I can defend them as utilitarian tools, but if they are needed that way they should be strictly regulated. But you and I know perfectly well that people LOVE guns and shooting ranges and all that stuff and defend shooting as a sport, people like that kid's mom. I don't buy the rubric and rituals of responsible gun ownership, no matter how elaborate they are. The responsible thing is not to have a gun! More and more the pig hunters here are turning to bow hunting with dogs to keep down the numbers of feral pigs. Not dainty and nice but better than guns.
BTW: We have a pellet gun, which Terry uses to kill coqui frogs, which are an imported pest. I don't like having even that thing around.
Why are we "liberals" the ones who have to back down, make all the compromises? Just because we are afraid? Because we are being intimidated by gun owners? Because we have this strong desire to believe that people know what they are doing, whether they really do or not?

Rain Trueax

Because right now the most important thing is to get something done. Assault rifles are far worse than anything else out there and why not start with them. I accept you hate guns. I don't care that you hate guns. I am fine with that. I had a woman friend who as terrified of them and was afraid to visit our home because of them. We locked the guns in the safe for her visit as a way to make her not terrified.

The thing is you will not get what the country needs if you push for hating also gun owners. This is a political issue and whether you see it as a moral one or not, it's politics that will settle it. It's obvious there is not nearly enough interest in a total gun ban as you would like. There is interest in an assault rifle ban and something to stop extended magazines. Why damage its chances by convincing all gun owners they must be against it as a slippery slope.

Nobody today is demanding everyone own a gun although there have been a few communities with the idea of such a law. You have no reason to fear most people who own guns. You do have reason to fear assault rifles in the wrong hands. Because you personally find gun ownership repugnant and you are being fed hysteria from a small fraction of the left, you could end up not getting what we really could have gotten.

And you don't have to back down but you won't win anything if you make this about all gun owners. What matters the most? Getting rid of the assault rifles and extended magazines or putting out a rhetoric of rage against not only all guns but gun owners.

I don't think the social media is helping with this as things like twitter can be full of what seems a universal view but it's a few people.

I am a practical woman not an idealist. I say go for what we can get. if you want more later, try to convince enough politicians you are right. Don't get nothing now out of the desire for more. If this is a step for the liberals then at least get the first step. What matters most? Nothing or righteousness? This massacre was about assault rifles and mental illness helped along by a culture of violence and rage-- and I personally believe by our constant war. Chris Matthews called it a trinity of guns, mental illness, and culture of violence. I would say weapons that have been glorified by movies and look 'cool' to young males. By the way i have now read this kid was a huge fan of one of the violent video games. I haven't seen that specific one but I know what's out there. There's a lot to pick from in terms of what is going to actually stop the next such event. Probably we can't do it fast enough. (I also think instantly all school front doors should have their glass replaced with bulletproof glass which would have stopped this guy and gotten the police there fast enough to arrest him). Another thing I have tried to figure out is why are bulletproof vests legal for ordinary people? I can only see one reason they'd be wanted. There is a lot to pick from.

Hattie

Rain: Actually, I'm a pretty cool customer. I'm not running around weeping and holding teddy bears. I save my big emotions for my family and friends, who god knows have had enough horrible things happen to them.
But do watch what Goldie Taylor says about how her father and brother died. They were not wiped out by fancy weapons, just good old fashioned lethal ones. And don't forget that the #1 cause of death by guns in this country is by suicide, all too often murder/suicide.
People love their guns. They should admit that instead of saying people like me are oversensitive and then sit down and figure out how they are going to deal with their gun situation, instead of putting the onus on those of us who don't own guns, to have the correct attitude toward them.

Rain Trueax

I don't love my guns, cars, tractor, ATV, hammer, axe, etc. They are tools that to use when required. I don't think my husband loves his guns either although he might love his new tractor. I am not sure. He's more fond of guns than I am though. I just know I need them sometimes and have lived with them quite comfortably all my life.

On suicide, I have had a few experiences with that. As a teen, I remember my father, who got terrible headaches and would go out and sit by the rifles as if contemplating ending those headaches. On the farm across the creek from where we live in Oregon, a neighbor's father shot himself to death in his son's barn (and my husband cleaned the aftermath of that for him so he didn't have to); so I am quite aware it is the easiest way for some to commit suicide. Hanging works and my cousin's daughter chose that method at 13. So does jumping off the rim of the Grand Canyon. I was there when a woman chose that method. Suicide isn't just about guns as there are many ways to do it if a gun isn't available.

If it works to get your ban on all guns, so be it. I doubt it but time will tell. I only hope it won't end the chances for a real ban on assault rifles and extended magazines.

As for you being overly sensitive, I don't know you at all. I simply referred to a woman who did have a fear that a gun would kill her. Some have fears of drowning.

We will never agree on this. They say a lot of this divide is between rural and suburban America. Maybe so. I grew up in the country and have never lived where guns weren't a part of life as well as shooting. That did NOT cause what happened in Connecticut as you well know. And your reaction to this is probably from long before the event. It's just another reason to go after guns. I doubt it will work but hey, we all gotta do what we gotta do. I've said my piece on this one and don't intend to address it again. I also won't be getting rid of my guns and do not feel any guilt that it's due to me having guns that it happened.

Hattie

Yes. But why the despondency in rural America that leads so many to commit suicide? One thing I picked up in the clip is that the Democrats figure they can ignore the South, and the Southwest, and they might just decide that about rural America in general, too.
And also a lot of people who say they live in the country really live in outer suburbia or exurbia, and they may not appreciate old Joe in his trailer threatening to shoot anyone who comes on his property, colorful though he may be.
Serious country people risk losing political influence if they do not re-assess their attitudes toward gun ownership. I appreciate what you say, and I know how deep gun culture goes, right up there with car and truck culture, but all of us can (must)adjust to new circumstances.
As my mother used to say, the Wild West and cowboy life was over even before she was born. It is now a myth, the myth of the old west. We love the romance of it, but it's mostly salesmanship to get us to buy the trappings.
I like Twisty on the subject! Read Dreadful Acres and her adventures with beat-up horses and her contemptuous handyman. It will make you laugh. Anyway, leave us not lose our sense of humor, and don't point that thing at me!!!

Rain Trueax

Well we will hope whatever happens will be for the best... and I don't even point fingers at people-- it's rude ;)

Maria

I have no idea who Rain Trueax is, but on this issue it sounds like we agree. I come from a very rural family and have been around guns and gun owners all my life. I have never once felt threatened by any of them.

One reason why the NRA has been empowered to maintain the ridiculous stance that automatic weapon ownership is defensible, is because responsible gun owners fear those, like you, who express the view that ALL guns should be banned and all gun owners are evil.

It is politically counter-productive to wage war against ALL guns and all gun owners. Rain Trueax is right. Go after assault weapons and big clips.

Hattie

Maria: Hey. Gun owners and manufacturers don't need to be afraid of me. I'm unarmed! But if the NRA can be backed into a corner where they are willing to accept assault weapons bans as a "compromise," I'm all for it and will continue to push for what I want, which is to eliminate guns. That's how politics works. But I don't want "compromise" to be pushed farther in the direction of gun owners. Liberals have accepted too much of that maneuvering from opponents who have no intention of changing and just want to force us back.

jaykaym

So much I could say about your post but will just comment on the stereotyping issue. As soon as you lumped all rural men, military men, and teenagers together as belligerent, backwards, and angry you lost your argument, and your argument is one with which I agree. I come from a military home and family where we have never had guns, a rural family where there was no hunting, and have had a teenaged son who never got into video games. Your use of these sterotypes is just as offensive as the Republican bigots on their issues of race and country of origin. I will chose to believe that you were trying to use hyperbole to strengthen your comments, not that you actually believe that my calm, rational, non-gun owning career military husband would be capable of such actions as you ascribe to him. And if you prefer not to publish my comment I do understand.

Hattie

jaykaym: I am glad that you grew up in a family without gun violence, as I did, and that, like me, you do not have to deal with having guns around. We are fortunate.
I do think gun owners have a lot to worry about, though, much more so than those of us who do not own guns. It's so easy to have something lethal happen.
With (so the estimates go)hundreds of millions of guns out there just in our country, shouldn't we be just a little concerned?
Anyway, I never said I was fair or morally superior! That is the corner we liberals get painted into, where we have to be nicer and more caring than others so that we can be dismissed as ineffectual. You can add the caveats, if you want, to everything I say, but am I going to spoil my argument by saying, "I don't mean you responsible people out there."
It's like how we liberals can't have money and a social conscience too without being called hypocrites.
Oh well. Let's just hope we can get rid of most of that firepower.

naomi

Marianna, You are brave to go into the weeds, as they say, on gun control. Those who defend gun ownership in an overwhelmingly URBAN country. It is not about being "liberals" but city people. We believe that these dangerous weapons from guns to semi-automatic weapons we think are used by policemen or soldiers.

Some of your commenters need to hear us and Goldie Taylor. Here is a black woman whose experiences led her to protect herself and own a gun yet now sees it is time to give it up. Listening to us would help: we have been dominated by listening to those who defend gun ownership. It is the 21st century where I live.

Hattie

Naomi: The New York Times is full of fascinating articles and opinions on guns.
Here are some quick points from the articles, which can be found on their site under "most e-mailed:"
--Quoting Hannah Arendt, a writer says violence is silence, civilization speaks. This is something I've always known. The person who says sit down and be quiet is the enemy of freedom. So consenting under threat to remain silent about gun violence infringes on my freedom of speech. And yet many find themselves in this kind of relationship to gun owners. It is simply too dangerous to object.
--Most of those who kill are not (necessarily) mentally ill but are depressive or alcohol or drug abusers. (This shifts the ground a little, because aren't alcohol and drug abuse signs of mental illness?) Since alcohol and drug abuse and gun ownership are ubiquitous, we are in big trouble.
--Newtown is full of gun enthusiasts! They have been scaring the crap out of people for ages, but they have been impossible to deal with. I think because everyone is so scared of them.
And then there is the "my Nigel" factor. This is my own invention, borrowed from Twisty, who remarks on how we know other men are no good, but our Nigel would never do those things. So our gun owner would never harm anyone with a gun!
I do think it's up to gun owners to get the situation under control. People like me and you, Naomi, are doing our part by not owning guns.
But they can't expect us to be quiet about the situation. It's too threatening, too serious.
I'm very worried about a family member whose husband has a domestic violence record and a closet full of guns. I wish to god he would get rid of them. I wish she'd leave him, too, but she feels she can't. And I am forced to be silent about all this for fear I would set him off. Very hard.

Henry Hank Chapin

First of all, great editorial, Hattie. Right on target! Oops, wrong metaphor.

I don't blame liberals for anything. All the progress in this country is due to liberals. We are the salt of the earth and WE WON. This country is not divided down the middle. No. The good guys are winning 53%-47%, and it's getting better year by year. Find me a conservative who did a damn thing for the civil rights of minorities. All these teabaggers do is complain about how everything is too expensive, refight the Civil War, and make ridiculaous arguments like "legitimate rape" and "I am not a witch" and a tiny fetus is a person with human rights etc. etc. Their hatred of big government is a more modern version of the Confederate hatred of the Union Government.

Everthing is too expensive, they say. Yeah---like two wars in one Bush administration. Now, that's expensive, including the guns we had to buy. The best of America is liberal starting with Ralph Waldo Emerson and Walt Whitman. And boy, did Whitman love Lincoln and correctly assess his greatness.

Regarding rural melancholia. One should read Willa Cather. Her pages are littered with the suicides by gun of lonely people lost and lonely in the vast spaces of the Nebraska prairie. My own great-grandfather, an immigrant music teacher from Leipzig, Germany disappeared in that vastness of Nebraska to become the legendary bad guy of our family because he deserted my Grandmother. Theonly Chapin who ever deserted his family. Maybe he got shot. Or maybe he was really Butch Cassidy and ended up in South America. Nobody knows, but whatever the case, my Grandmother hated him. Or, read "Winesburg, Ohio" for a glimpse into small town misery and loneliness. His "Adventure" is one of the great stories of all time about American loneliness, the other side of the coin of individualism.

Do some nice people own a gun? No doubt.

Hattie

Hank: America is a great work of imagination. It's in our literature. But only us literary types know that. Sigh.
Of course the commenters here are liberals too, but they have internalized the melancholia of American life and can't imagine a different, brighter world.
You can see how that mentality is dragging Obama down.
Oh, and I love reading about your family, which sounds every bit as crazy and mixed up as mine.

Hattie

The work I'm thinking of now is House of Seven Gables. Our mindset goes back to that. A kind of frozen horror-stasis. I think Hawthorne captures it the best. We are basically a melancholy people. More: No immigrant groups are truly assimilated until they have dropped the promise of America stuff and come to understand what this country truly is. It's a place of struggle. And for many, a place of failure.
However, I must say Terry and I had a delightful evening eating at our favorite Mexican restaurant with a man who has never held a gun in his life, had no desire ever to do so, but who seemed perfectly masculine to me.
There is always this disconnect between my very nice personal life and the concerns of this blog. It's positively schizophrenic.

Poppa Zao

Much to ponder and comment upon. I linked to this at my blog. At NancyNall.com, a commenter compared the Second Amendment to an inflamed appendix that must be removed immediately. Is the problem the Amendment itself or how it is interpreted?

Rain Trueax

I want to comment on the melancholy issue of rural people since I live over 20 miles from any town, on a small, Oregon ranch that raises cattle and beef. I've known a lot of rural people in the 36 years or so that I have lived here. Since I also had my first 18 years growing up in rural Washington, I've had some experience of life in rural America-- at least that in the PNW. I have known of one suicide out here and that man came back from California to settle his wife up here, been here a few months at most before he shot himself in his son's barn. He was severely depressed because he was getting old and could not hack what that meant to his life. Maybe if he had gotten help, he might've chosen otherwise but probably not. He had lived all the years he wanted to live. He was not though a country dweller.

Other than that I have not known anybody with severe depression out here. We have had one for sure murder in those years-- a drug dealer got dumped in a remote park but not sure where he was shot. And some years back, there was a possible family murder but it has not yet been proven. The one brother disappeared. The other brother and he had had disagreements. The assumption is the one was murdered but without a body that has not gone to court.

I guess the assumption that rural people are more depressed according to some statistic might come from different areas than mine. People I know stay busy and don't spend a lot of time evaluating whether they are happy or not. Living out means a lot of driving. There have been quite a few deaths in my years here from automobile or truck accidents.

I don't know of anybody with an assault rifle (haven't ever heard one fired anywhere either), but I do know one person who is an avid trophy hunter. Very nice person but I don't go into their home because he has heads on the wall ewwwwwww. They are though not weird and seem like very very nice people-- other than the trophy hunting thing which I guess for some would be a step too far to be considered nice-- although if they knew them, I think they'd agree with me-- they're nice folks.

If politically we start getting into a rural versus city dweller situation where each thinks the other is out to get them or sees them as neurotic, this is not going to fare well for our nation, is it? That thing said earlier about the Democratic party maybe forgetting about the likes or needs of the country dwellers, is an example. We gave a lot of money this year, as one rural family, to the reelection of Obama, DeFazio (not even in our district for voting) and other Democrats across the nation. So they should cease caring about us other than when we donate? It just makes no sense. Country dwellers come in all types. We do face problems with predators that those who live in a city do not, but it is bad news when city people know so few that they begin to stereotype what they think they are based on some study or their own fear of the 'other' who now have become ranchers and farmers-- an area where all their food used to be raised-- at least until corporations took a lot of that over.

If in some rural areas there is a lot of despondency, maybe it's not because people live out but because it's harder to make a living out where they love being. I don't know. Have not seen that study, but I do know my own experiences. It doesn't fit where I live, and I think by any possible definition, I live in one part of rural America.

Since we also have a home in the suburbs of Tucson I should not leave this without mentioning that in the 13 years we have owned it, there have been rapes, murders (some with knives), home invasions, and the mass shooting of those coming to meet a congresswoman, all within about five or six miles of it-- and this is a nice, seemingly peaceful neighborhood.

naomi dagen bloom

NY Times 12-19-12, front page, national edition, Nate Silver, on married household in suburbs, "...40 per cent reported having gun in their home...twice as likely if they are Republicans." http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/12/18/in-gun-ownership-statistics-partisan-divide-is-sharp/

Suburbs are not cities.

Hattie

Violent crime rates are low here, and there are few gun crimes. Looking at Silver's statistics might explain that. White Republicans are in a very small minority here. We do have gun shops. I wonder if they are really selling much. Maybe to people in Puna and the south of the island. I'm only speculating, since there is no way of knowing for sure what's going on. I'm going to sneak into stores and look at their gun selections and examine the gun magazines, too.
The only violent crime I ever heard of in our neighborhood was in the early 8o's--a home invasion where the woman living alone in her house was knocked out with a blow to the head.
I was really struck by the statistics showing that gun ownership is highest among white Republicans and that "minorities" own fewer guns.
Our big violence problem is "domestics." Usually a man beating up his girl friend.

Rain Trueax

In Tucson itself the crime rate and violence would be much higher. Tucson has high crime statistics but it is mostly in the south part of the town and a lot involves either drug gangs or mistaken identity.

Violence of men toward their wives or those wanting to leave them is everywhere. It makes you think that who you date needs to be carefully considered and I sure hope my granddaughter will keep that in mind. Women thinking they can change a man is definitely high on my list of bad ideas.

Hattie

What does "mistaken identity" mean?

Hattie

Oh, I found some in five seconds on Google.

Search Results

Lawyer: Mistaken identity in NH cop shooting case - The Boston Globe
www.bostonglobe.com/...mistaken-identity...shooting.../story.html
Dec 5, 2012 – A lawyer for a man charged with attempted murder in the shooting of a Manchester police officer said Tuesday that the accusations are a ''case ...
Lawyer: Mistaken identity in NH cop shooting case - News - Boston ...
www.boston.com/news/...mistaken-identity...shooting.../story.html
Dec 4, 2012 – MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — Jurors on Tuesday viewed four gouge marks bullets left in the sidewalk during the shooting of a police officer as ...
Mistaken identity led to fatal shooting of Calif. infant, say cops ...
www.cbsnews.com/2300-504083_162-10008074.html
View Mistaken identity led to fatal shooting of Calif. infant, say cops photos in CBS News' Mistaken identity led to fatal shooting of Calif. infant, say cops photo ...
Mistaken Identity in Connecticut Shooting - Yahoo! Voices - voices ...
voices.yahoo.com/mistaken-identity-connecticut-shooting-11938496...
4 days ago – From the horror of the shooting of 20 children, someone else's life is forever changed.
Neighbors Believe Shooting Could be Case of Mistaken Identity ...
www.ksee24.com/video/Boy-Shot---AAS-183265232.html
6 days ago – A 12-year-old boy is on life support after he was shot in his home in Southeast Fresno. Neighbors believe it could be the result of mistaken ...
Police: Mistaken Identity Leads To Drive-By Shooting :: WRAL.com
www.wral.com/news/local/story/106130/
Dec 9, 2012 – SMITHFIELD, N.C. — Police in Smithfield said a case of mistaken identity led to a drive-by shooting outside a Wal-Mart early Monday morning.
Man, 2 teens wounded in possible mistaken-identity gang shooting ...
latimesblogs.latimes.com/.../gang-shooting-mar-vista-mistaken-identit...
Nov 13, 2011 – A man, his teenage son and the son's girlfriend were wounded Saturday night in Mar Vista in what may have been a mistaken-identity gang ...
Help Prevent Mistaken Identity Shootings - Use Visible ID - Brownells
www.brownells.com/..../Help-Prevent-Mistaken-Identity-Shootings-U...
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