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Big Pile Of Guns Fails To Deter Shooting

Once again, there has been a multiple shooting. Authorities in Millington, Tennessee ordered a lockdown while the shooter was taken into custody. We’ve seen it all before, except this time, the National Rifle Association won’t be calling for armed guards at schools to deter gun violence…

…because practically everybody at the location of this newest shooting was already armed. In fact, that was part of the problem. Three men started arguing, and things got out of hand. That’s not so uncommon. More abnormal is that one had a gun ready, pulled it out and shot the other two.

Why did this man have a gun? Why did he know how to use it? The big organization that had a lockdown had put guns into the man’s hands, and trained him how to shoot. The other men were not anti-gun pacifists. They had been trained to shoot to kill too.

In fact, there were, at the time of the shooting, over seven thousand gun-carrying professionals working with this organization in the Millington community. Many of these people had guns at home as well as at work.

What’s more, the place where the shooting happened is one of the largest gun storage facilities in the world. It was a military armory.

Yet, all those guns, and people carrying guns, didn’t do a thing to deter the shooter.

The only thing that can stop a bad man with a gun is a good man with a gun? Seven thousand men with guns couldn’t stop this one man with a gun from shooting two people he was angry at. Besides, the shooter was supposed to be one of the good men with a gun. So much for the NRA model of security.

25 comments to Big Pile Of Guns Fails To Deter Shooting

  • I do believe that there is room for you in Chicago where guns are banned and prohibited. What part of Shall Not Be Infringed are you missing?

    The NRA is a special interest group just like the others who bribe politicians.

    Mentally disturbed people kill. Armed fat bastards who sit around and do nothing allow them to be killed. This is America like it or leave it… and yes, moving to Chittycago would be leaving the free states..

  • hddhdhdhdue

    Hi there, John! Have you ever thought that a person can: 1) Not want to take away people’s constitutional right to be idiots while 2) Point out that only idiots can claim with a straight face that guns provide effective prevention of violence or protection of liberty? No, of course not. Been spending a lot of time around lead shot?

    That NSA sure is terrified of your guns, isn’t it?

    • Here’s the critical issue with the Second Amendment:
      Once it is hindered/violated/abrogated we lose our right to protection of the Fourth Amendment because the rules against the Second will allow any government agency to search anything and everything you own. You crack pipe will be located and you might go to prison.

      New laws that prohibit items that are Constitutionally protected allow for the government to charge you with and commit you to criminal activity without a courtroom trial.

      Example: 21 round magazines for a pistol are made illegal. The PD can search your car or home and because the law is against a Constitutionally protected right, they need only to find it and your sentence is created.

      Example: same scenario, your neighbors house is searched for the same magazines and the PD must ignore the children tied to the bed post and the kilo of cocaine in the kitchen until they can summons a new warrant to search for those items and in the meantime, the drugs disappear and the children are driven away by the woman the kidnapper and trafficker calls for someone to pick up the children and take them to a separate stash house.

      Sure, some people are not capable of driving a car let alone owning a gun, but the rest of us are protected from any encroachment upon our Rights.

      Chicago has outlawed guns… They have the highest (non war related) gun killings in the States.

      Not sure about you, but if I had to spend any amount of time in Cabrini Green, I would be armed and it would not be to protect me from the NSA.

      Some reading for you:

      Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241
      Conspiracy Against Rights

      This statute makes it unlawful for two or more persons to conspire to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any person of any state, territory or district in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him/her by the Constitution or the laws of the United States, (or because of his/her having exercised the same).

      It further makes it unlawful for two or more persons to go in disguise on the highway or on the premises of another with the intent to prevent or hinder his/her free exercise or enjoyment of any rights so secured.

      Punishment varies from a fine or imprisonment of up to ten years, or both; and if death results, or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for any term of years, or for life, or may be sentenced to death.

      Title 18, U.S.C., Section 242
      Deprivation of Rights Under Color of Law

      This statute makes it a crime for any person acting under color of law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom to willfully deprive or cause to be deprived from any person those rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution and laws of the U.S.

      This law further prohibits a person acting under color of law, statute, ordinance, regulation or custom to willfully subject or cause to be subjected any person to different punishments, pains, or penalties, than those prescribed for punishment of citizens on account of such person being an alien or by reason of his/her color or race.

      Acts under “color of any law” include acts not only done by federal, state, or local officials within the bounds or limits of their lawful authority, but also acts done without and beyond the bounds of their lawful authority; provided that, in order for unlawful acts of any official to be done under “color of any law,” the unlawful acts must be done while such official is purporting or pretending to act in the performance of his/her official duties. This definition includes, in addition to law enforcement officials, individuals such as Mayors, Council persons, Judges, Nursing Home Proprietors, Security Guards, etc., persons who are bound by laws, statutes ordinances, or customs.

      Punishment varies from a fine or imprisonment of up to one year, or both, and if bodily injury results or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire shall be fined or imprisoned up to ten years or both, and if death results, or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death.

      So, not only is federal law on my side, but recent Supreme Court Rulings.

      WE CAN make certain that mental cases do not have guns, because they do not have a full Bill of Rights due to their inability to comprehend right from wrong.

      • J Clifford

        John, by your logic, we can’t outlaw anything, because as soon as something is outlawed, there can be search warrants upon suspicion of violation of a crime, and police using those search warrants might find something. No, John, that’s absurd.

        There is no reason to think that preservation of Second Amendment rights will lead to preservation of Fourth Amendment rights. Americans have more guns per capita than most nations, and the NSA is spying on us anyway.

        John, do you dispute the accuracy of the numbers shown in this chart of homicides of Chicago?

        Chicago has not, as you claim, “outlawed guns”. Chicago gun laws actually became relaxed shortly before the current relatively small increase in gun violence there.

        I know people who have gone to Cabrini Green repeatedly, never with a gun, and never came to harm. The fact that you would bring a gun to someone else’s neighborhood says as much about you as it does about that neighborhood.

        • The report does not come from me. It is DOJ material.
          I carry in all neighborhoods and may need to protect either myself (not likely) or a third party who is being threatened or worse.
          Last thing I ever want to do is get in some sort of a shootout, especially with a pistol. I have no idea where your chart comes from and there is no statement of how the homicides were committed. The rate was actually higher in the 60’s and 70’s than most of the dates on your chart. Maybe the people who have long since been out of work (in my opinion, due to the lobbyists, a GOP Congress and Clinton’s NAFTA and GATT), or perhaps they are not as concerned about buying food these days as they were in the past. NY has worst days than Chicago as does LA.

          I was using Chittycago as an example because I hate the place… Even though both my mother was born there as was my beautiful wife. In the 90’s Chittcago nearly doubled their police force AND gave them new rules of engagement and that is why crime dropped from many people’s perspective.

          I was living in Chitty City in the 90’s and the cops would walk shoulder to shoulder at events such as Navy Pier’s Food Festival and run down children or anyone who was in the way of their 20 to 30 cop strong, locked arm march… I hate to think how they treated people in the rougher areas.

          Yes, they had ‘outlawed guns’ (as much as they can pretend to outlaw them) with TV blocks threatening to confiscate them and warning about jail time… etc…

          http://pricetheory.uchicago.edu/levitt/Papers/LevittUnderstandingWhyCrime2004.pdf

          When the laws were relaxed in 2010 due to Supreme Court rulings and the, the rates dropped.

          http://edition.cnn.com/2010/CRIME/06/28/us.scotus.handgun.ban/

          http://www.law.uchicago.edu/files/files/41.lott_.final_.pdf

          By the way- Cabrini Green is no longer the place is once was. Carpetbagging Yuppies are buying it up and renovating it, then selling the revamped apts and homes at a huge profit.

          I have no idea why some anti American would be discussing gun rights when you obviously have no basis for American related rights as a discussion.

          If you don’t agree with our Bill of Rights, leave America or crawl back in your cave and tune into MSNBC or Fox News.

      • Bill

        Wait a minute. My crack pipe is constitutionally protected, and I should have the right to shoot it out with anyone who comes looking for it?

        What’s the composition of the atmosphere on your planet, John?

        • No Bill, your crack pipe is not Constitutionally protected, but as per the very clear and concise wording of the Second Amendment, your gun is.

          You’ll need to pull your head out and come up for air eventually… When you do, I’ll have a cup of coffee or a soda waiting for you.

  • Dave

    Peregrin, if you really believe that seven thousand Navy personnel were carrying weapons on the base at the time of the shooting, or that today’s National Guard armories are full of weapons, you are mistaken. Time to get out more, Dude. Thanks to Bush 41 and Bill Clinton, armed personnel are rare on military bases. Even this shooter had to run home to obtain a firearm.

    This was one of those cases where someone gets fired, which is likely to make anyone irritable, and some turn violent. Most of these kind of shootings happen at workplaces and you read about them all the time. What do you think “going postal” is all about, anyway? Would you rather he went to the car and got a tire iron, or drove home and picked up a meat cleaver and a chain saw?

    As to your disdain of gun ownerhip in general, I am genuinely curious. Where did you get the idea that governments, of all institutions, should be the sole repository of firepower? Are you not aware of the murderous intentions of countless despots around the globe who kill their citizens by the dumpster load? And yes, I can list them if you like. Do you not think that citizens should be able to protect themselves from governments that become a danger to them? How did you come by your unwavering trust in government, and distrust of yourself?

    With mixed success the NRA and other such organisations are doing all they can to deter the creation of gun registries, particularly national registration, so that somewhat free people will be able to retain their somewhat freedoms in the event of a rogue government. Sorry, Dude. You will have to find some other way of subduing the violent streak in subsets of the population than to use the faux “guns are the problem” approach.

    I am in sympathy with many of the expressed desires of commenters and readers of this site, and many Occupy folks actually are quite astute in their understanding of our Nation’s (and the World’s) tenuous circumstance. However, I can’t for the life of me understand where this untoward trust in government comes from.

    • Bill

      Dave, speaking as one, myself, who is a gun owner, and fully intends to keep my guns, still I have to say that many of the statements you make here are completely nonsensical and actually constitute great arguments against your own thesis:

      “This was one of those cases where someone gets fired, which is likely to make anyone irritable, and some turn violent.” Sounds like a damn good reason to ban firearms from the workplace.

      “you read about [such shooting incidents] all the time.” You’re right, we do, which is a good reason to do what it takes to reduce their frequency.

      “Would you rather he went to the car and got a tire iron, or drove home and picked up a meat cleaver and a chain saw?” Hell yeah. An innocent victim has a decent chance of outrunning a tire iron or a meat cleaver, but not a bullet, and a chain saw can be inactivated by merely throwing a wadded up piece of clothing into it. Guns, in contrast, are extremely efficient and nearly invincible killing machines that give their operators an infinite advantage over the unarmed.

      The notion that the 2nd Amendment is important to protect us from a despotic government would be laughable if it wasn’t so embarrassingly dumb. Sure, it made some sense back in the 18th century. Today it makes no sense at all, when governments bristle with infinitely powerful weaponry beyond the reach of civilians. Plucky little you and your .22 against the gummint’s Hellfire-spitting drones, sarin gas, tanks, nukes, microwave pain beams, cruise missiles, helicopter-mounted .50 cals…wake up, honey, you’re having another dream.

  • Peregrin Wood

    Dave, you need to learn to use quotation marks correctly. I never said “guns are the problem”. The problem is that too many people think that guns are the solution.

    That includes the government, which flies off the handle and gets us into ridiculous wars all too frequently. Gun lovin’ NRA loonies say that they distrust the government, but they also tend to support a large military, which trains huge numbers of people how to use guns. How can so many people say they distrust government, but then support government programs to train people in the use of deadly weapons?

    Yes, it would be better if that nut – just another in a long list of nuts that the government schooled in the art of killing – had to go back home and get a chain saw instead of a gun. You know why? The other guys could have simply run away. A guy carrying a chainsaw with the motor on runs slower than other people do. You can’t do chainsaw attacks from a distance. The sound of the chainsaw would have been a warning, too. Didn’t you think this part of your argument through?

    There’s a huge distance between 1) allowing people to have guns if they really want to, and 2) loving guns, encouraging people to have guns, and having huge government programs to train people how to use guns to attack other people.

    Now, Dave, if you really think that individual gun owners can defend themselves from a tyrannical government using pistols and rifles, I have a challenge for you. I want you to shoot down a predator drone with your rifle. I want you to stop a tank with your rifle. I want you to explain to me how you can take a shotgun and use it to stop an incoming cruise missile.

    What do you think the military’s weapons are, Dave? Muskets? Think, Dave. Do you really think that the U.S. military, under a tyrannical dictator, would have any problem taking over a hostile city of Atlanta, Georgia, even if every house had a handgun, a rifle, and a shotgun? That city would be toast in 24 hours. Give every house anti-aircraft batteries, and the knowledge of how to use them, and then, maybe, Atlanta would last maybe a week… unless the theoretical dictator decided to use chemical weapons or a nuke.

    By the way, Dave, I’ve been to Millington, many times. Have you been to Millington, Dave?

  • Dave

    So You’ve been to Millington many times. And …? I don’t know that you or I can, from our armchairs so to speak, develop a realistic scenario or methodology for citizen soldiers throwing off governments gone bad, but the right to be prepared for the effort must not be infringed. Tiny Vietnam took on the U.S. military and won, so anything can happen. One must also understand that most of those capable of saving us from rogue government are already members of the U.S. armed forces. In desperate times you will be amazed at who it is that turns you in, and just as amazed at who it is that helps you out.

    I once shared your pacifist dreams, Peregrin, and I still hope they come true in the next life, but present realities are the bitch.

    • J Clifford

      Dave, I just want to be sure I understand. Your plan is to have rogue military units save us from rogue government elements. Who saves us from the rogue military units, then?

      Your plan has worked tremendously well in places like Somalia, Syria, and Egypt… if you ignore the tremendous failures.

  • Dave

    J, think American revolution. 1776. Rogue military units from each colony saved us from rogue government elements (the Brits). We are not Somalia.

    • J Clifford

      No, Dave, it was the French who saved our butts, because the Colonies were a pawn in a game of empires. Without the French, and their well-regulated militias, the revolutionaries would have been toast.

      Well-regulated militias. Where have I heard that before?

      Under your model of protecting civil liberties through rogue military units siding with rioters taking pot shots at government troops in the streets, the United States would certainly become like Somalia.

  • Dave

    Bill, I have enjoyed reading your responses to commentary here, my own included, because you seem like you have good reason on your side. However, I think your argument weak when what I say becomes nonsensical, laughable, embarrassing and dumb. If I described your argument this way, would it carry any weight with you?

    Let me try. It is the epitome of hubris, laughable, dumb and a statement full of bombastic insincerity to say “speaking as … a gun owner,[I fully intend] to keep my guns.” Oh, really? And just how do you fully intend to do that? It’s bullshit, Bill – you intend to do no such thing, and your comments only serve to remind me of the same question I asked above without getting any response. Why such trust in government? All you need are enough Diane Feinsteins in Washington and it will be the story of the Brits and the Aussies all over again. You will NOT be keeping your guns, because you will give these people power to take them away. Do you think they will not use this power? Talk about embarrassing.

    • Bill

      Yes, Dave, ever since the scary black man was elected President right-wing extremists and paid marketers for the gun industry, such as the NRA, have been assuring us that he’s coming for our guns any day now. While this has had the intended effects…vastly inflating the prices of guns and ammo, and terrifying the rubes, it nonetheless remains…um, how to say this politely…utterly wrong.

  • Damen

    I’m not going to harp about the second amendment and I’m pretty sure everyone here recalls that I am a pretty staunch pro-gun progressive. However, I do want to point out that in 1992 during the waning days of George H.W. Bush’s presidency, the DoD issued a directive that mandated that, with the exception of military police, DoD personnel on military bases are not allowed to carry firearms unless there’s a damn good reason or they’re in an active war zone.

    http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a272176.pdf

    a. The authorization to carry firearms will be issued only to qualified personnel when there is a reasonable expectation that life or Department of the Army (DA) assets will be jeopardized if firearms are not carried. Evaluation of the necessity to carry a firearm will be made considering this expectation weighed against the possible consequences of accidental or indiscriminate use of firearms.

    b. DA personnel regularly engaged in law enforcement or security duties will be armed.

    c. DA personnel are authorized to carry firearms while engaged in security duties, protecting personnel and vital Government assets, or guarding prisoners.

    I’ve been in gun debates for a long time and I heard this same argument brought up after the Fort Hood shooting. That’s when I found out about this directive and also found out that a lot of people understandably think that every soldier on any base anywhere is armed in some fashion when that just isn’t the case.

  • Damen

    I also wanted to point out that this happened outside of the base, so it’s likely the shooter had his weapon in his car.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2013/10/24/tenn-navy-base-on-lockdown-following-reports-of-shooting/3180035/

    • J Clifford

      Damen, actually, this violence took place on land leased by the Navy. Whether that’s technically off base or not is a matter of semantics.

      I don’t think you’ll dispute the fact that military communities tend to have many more guns than communities without military bases. You also won’t dispute, I hope, the fact that military bases have many more armed employees than other facilities. It would also be a bit silly to claim that a military armory is a place where guns are in short supply.

      The shooter was trained to kill with guns by the military. That’s a fact.

      Quibble about whether there were huge piles of guns in Millington that day, or merely lots and lots of guns, if you like. The central point remains: The availability of guns, and people who know how to use guns, is not a deterrent for violent crime.

  • Damen

    I’m not going to claim anything, I’m merely pointing out that the vast majority of firearms on military bases are, in fact, locked up and not readily available to soldiers unless they’re either MPs or in a war zone.

    • J Clifford

      Well, maybe, but that’s not the point. A small portion of an immense collection of weapons isstill a large number of weapons. If there are a thousand sharks swimming along a popular beach, and the majority of them are not attacking people, is it a safe beach?

      • Damen

        Well, considering I’m more likely to be hit by lightning than I am to be attacked by a shark, I can’t say I’m really all that worried about swimming with the sharks.

        That said, I’m not really looking for another gun debate. All it does is rehash the same talking points that have been tossed about for the last 20 years and serves no purpose because those who have staked out their positions aren’t going to change them and all it does is breed resentment.

        My position is: I’m a pro-gun liberal/progressive and I feel that the best things we can do for crime (of all kinds) doesn’t lie with more gun control as much as it does improving our social situation. Want to bring down crime? How about we start with a living minimum wage and take a hint from the NRA (I want to gargle mouthwash for saying that) and try and focus on better mental health. I honestly believe that tackling poverty and unaddressed mental issues would save us all a lot of heartache.

  • Dave

    J, I am thankful to live at the beach. There actually are thousands of sharks in the water and the majority of them are not attacking people. It is a safe beach. You just can’t pad all the walls and wrap everything in bubble-pack so nobody gets hurt. You just can’t.

    • J Clifford

      No, Dave, if there are people on the beach, and people swimming, and there aren’t any sensational news reports or missing swimmers, then what’s happening is that NONE of the sharks are attacking people. That’s a very different scenario than simply having the MAJORITY of thousands of sharks not attacking people. If you have the majority of sharks not attacking people, then what that means is that a minority of sharks are attacking people. That means that people on that beach are getting attacked by sharks, and that makes that beach unsafe.

      I’m not trying to make a statement about sharks and beaches, and how dangerous the big fish are. This is a hypothetical beach. I’m trying to point out the implications of what you’ve said when you write that “the vast majority of firearms on military bases are, in fact, locked up”.

      Well, of course that’s the case. Even in a battle, at any given time, the majority of bullets are not being fired. Especially at an armory, far far away from potential enemies, we can expect that the majority of weapons are not being held in people’s hands.

      The point is that NRA advocates claim that if we made the rest of our society more like a military base (and yes, Dave, there are more people with guns at military bases than there are almost everywhere else in our society), then we would be more safe from violent attack. This violent attack in the gun-heavy community of Millington is just one anecdote that highlights the broader trend, which is that the prevalence of guns is not associated with the prevention of violence.

      This isn’t necessarily an argument demanding that the Second Amendment be repealed. It is, however, an observation that guns actually are not the wonderful things that gun enthusiasts often describe them to be.

  • Bill

    Dave is of course right to say that “You just can’t pad all the walls and wrap everything in bubble-pack so nobody gets hurt,” but that is, of course, beside the point because no one is suggesting any such thing. Belaboring the strained metaphor still further, we can reply “yes, but you can (and should) insist that people not scatter tons of shards of broken glass all over the beach where people routinely walk barefoot.” You can insist that untrained random people not carry loaded guns where it is absurd to, and you can insist that anyone who seeks to purchase a gun should be screened (which we pretend to do today, while allowing anyone to walk right around that screen by dealing at a ‘gun show’ or buying person-to-person over the internet, rather than visiting a gun shop).

    Back in the Northern state where I used to live, in order to get my first hunting license I had to successfully complete a three-day safety and competency course…a perfectly reasonable requirement, I thought. But then I was shocked when I later decided to apply for a concealed carry permit in that same state: all I had to do was neatly print my name and address on a small card and hand it in at the sheriff’s office…no need to demonstrate that I even knew which end of a gun to point which way, or had ever heard of ‘firearm safety.’ Insanity. To walk around alone in the wilderness with a gun I had to be properly trained, but to pop into my local bar for a few stiff ones with a loaded gun in my pocket…hey, no worries; we’re sure you know what you’re doing. There’s no possible excuse for that sort of stupidity…except, you know, FREEDOM!

    Now in my new Southern tier home, newly dominated by Republicans for the first time since the war between the states, crazy tea partiers maneuvered to get a law passed allowing pretty much just anybody to carry a loaded firearm in any public park…because FREEDOM! And BAD GUYS!

    Nope, you can’t bubble-wrap the world to keep everybody safe. But you sure can avoid scattering roofing nails all over the place.

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