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AndyS

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Pelican Bay, TX 76020
Home country: United States
Current location: home
Member since: Thu Jan 20, 2005, 01:07 PM
Number of posts: 11,826

Journal Archives

America, we have a problem pt 2

America, we have a problem . . .

Two totally unrelated facts that can't possibly have any relationship.

Between 2019 and 2021, 17 million people — including 5 million children — were newly exposed to guns in homes. 

The new data show the US homicide rate increased from about six homicides per 100,000 people in 2019 to 7.8 per 100,000 in 2020, according to NCHS.




https://www.acpjournals.org/doi/full/10.7326/M21-3423
https://www.cnn.com/2021/10/06/health/us-homicide-rate-increase-nchs-study/index.html

For gun violence reduction gun owners are irrelevant.

The reason gun control doesn't pass has nothing to do with gun owners. Sorry to deflate your overblown ego and sense of self importance but you are simply irrelevant.

Only 9% of voters, I assume gun owners, favor lessening gun restrictions.

Gun owners are not even a consideration, they are a minuscule minor irritation.

Sensible gun laws and the reduction of gun deaths, injuries and $280,000,000 a year cost are held hostage by the gun lobby.

Over the careers of current Senators the NRA has contributed $71,405,873 in campaign funds. For instance Mitch McConnell got $1.3m which works out to $1,863 per dead constituent. Mitt Romney got the most at $13,647,676 or $9,993 per dead constituent. Chuck Grassley single handedly blocked the last attempt at universal background checks and he's a piker at only $226,007 or $856 per dead constituent.

In 2020 alone the NRA spent $787,652 in direct contributions and another $29,355,400 in 'indirect' spending through PACs which filters into political contributions. I can't calculate that over the careers of our current Senators but it's kinda big, doncha' think? And that's just the NRA, not the entirety of gundom which includes the gun makers and other gun groups.

So it's not the poor besotted gun owners who are a problem. It's the ones who make $$ off death and misery.

https://elections.bradyunited.org/take-action/nra-donations-116th-congress-senators
https://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/national-rifle-assn/summary?id=d000000082

For gun violence reduction gun owners are irrelevant.

The reason gun control doesn't pass has nothing to do with gun owners. Sorry to deflate your overblown ego and sense of self importance but you are simply irrelevant.

Only 9% of voters, I assume gun owners, favor lessening gun restrictions.

Gun owners are not even a consideration, they are a minuscule minor irritation.

Sensible gun laws and the reduction of gun deaths, injuries and $280,000,000 a year cost are held hostage by the gun lobby.

Over the careers of current Senators the NRA has contributed $71,405,873 in campaign funds. For instance Mitch McConnell got $1.3m which works out to $1,863 per dead constituent. Mitt Romney got the most at $13,647,676 or $9,993 per dead constituent. Chuck Grassley single handedly blocked the last attempt at universal background checks and he's a piker at only $226,007 or $856 per dead constituent.

In 2020 alone the NRA spent $787,652 in direct contributions and another $29,355,400 in 'indirect' spending through PACs which filters into political contributions. I can't calculate that over the careers of our current Senators but it's kinda big, doncha' think? And that's just the NRA, not the entirety of gundom which includes the gun makers and other gun groups.

So it's not the poor besotted gun owners who are a problem. It's the ones who make $$ off death and misery.

https://elections.bradyunited.org/take-action/nra-donations-116th-congress-senators
https://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/national-rifle-assn/summary?id=d000000082

Why the "compromise" falls on deaf ears.

Over the last year I have posted data and research on guns and gun violence. I posted graphs that showed gun violence increasing every time gun supply increased. I posted data on states with restrictive gun laws vs states with permissive gun laws and the correlating gun violence rates. I've posted most recently that the FBI has noted an increase in short 'time to crime' guns sold within a year of being found at crime scenes which showed that gun owners who passed a background check became criminals within a year. I've posted statistics on the number of guns and the number of new guns sold every year. No reasoning human being can look at this data and not conclude that the only way to decrease gun violence is to decrease the availability of guns. Amnesty International and every other violence prevention organization believes that is true based on available evidence.

Still I haven't been able to convince any on the pro gun side that there is a connection between the availability of guns and gun violence.

Now I'm told I must compromise with the Gun Culture to 'make progress on gun control'. Who is the Gun Culture? The NRA, Gun Owners of America, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, major gun manufacturers and most militias. It's publications like Ammo Land, The Truth about Guns and other rabid gun magazines. What do they want and what have they worked for since 1970? More guns for sale with fewer restrictions on sales, possession, use and “self defense”.

To compromise is to give the opposition something they want in exchange for something you want. All I want is to reduce gun violence which necessarily means reducing the availability of guns. What is it the Gun Culture wants? More guns bought more easily and more different kinds of guns including machine guns, short barrel rifles and shotguns, some 'destructive devices' and unregulated unrestricted possession at all times in all places.

Of course they don't say this out loud, they couch it in weasel words by saying they want to 'modernize' or 'clarify' or 'simplify' the Gun Control Act of 1934 and the few other gun restrictions that currently exist. There is never any specificity about the result of these 'simplifications'. When queried the subject changes or the answer is even more nebulous than before. In fact they appear to want to 'clarify' them out of existence. All for the purpose of making the last few types of prohibited guns available through the local gun store or directly over the internet.

So, if the only way to decrease gun violence and the immense cost it puts on society is to decrease the availability of guns, why would any sentient being 'compromise' with the gun culture if it means increasing the availability of guns even if getting some agreement on peripheral issues?

No, I will stay with the status quo as bad as it is and work at real and meaningful changes instead of willingly making things worse by 'compromising' with the Gun Culture. Will it happen soon? I don't know but I do know the arc of the moral universe is long and bends ever toward justice.

There was another request (at large) for compromise.

I posted a version of this: https://www.democraticunderground.com/126213984

No response to any of MY concerns only a studious ignorance of any of the issues I raise. And of course a complete disregard and failure to refute the assertion that all gunners really want is access to full auto and all other NFA guns over the counter.

I have heard this 'compromise' before. 'Bout 3-4 years ago. Same premise, same rationalization, same writing style. That guy bought a pizza . . .

A special note to those who hijacked my Sandy Hook thread.

======

It was December 12, 2014.

Friday morning I spent with my 2 year old granddaughter, her sitting on my lap watching the talking heads on TV. This little girl will be the most politically savvy woman in the world when she grows up. Mom drops her off around 8:30 on her way to work after leaving her two sons, 5 and 10, at school.

Shortly after 9:30 AM the Sandy Hook reporting began.

OK, I thought, another mentally deranged guy going off after being fired, taking it out on the admins who did the deed to him. All the while the kids are safe, after all what kind of monster would hurt little kids?

There are scenes of teachers leading children single file at a dead run from the building.

About noon, my baby girl still on my lap, I learn that there are children among the casualties. Jesus! They must be collateral injuries. Nobody could possibly intentionally hurt innocent little kids, right?

The police have set up a reunion site at a nearby fire station for parents to pick up their children. Panicked parents are arriving and milling about looking for their children. Police surround the school and search the nearby wooded area.

I put Kate down for a nap about 2:30. It’s hard to let her go although she fell asleep in my arms an hour ago and my arms are cramping from the awkward way she lay on my chest. I go back to CNN and MSNBC.

The coroner is speaking to the press. There are 26 casualties. Six faculty and 20 students. The students are between 6 and 7 years of age. Multiple gunshot wounds to all victims. The bodies are being prepared for identification by photograph. “My forensic photographers are very good . . .” A journalist asks, “How can you be so detached?” Not the most professional question ever asked but by now the entire press corps are bawling their eyes out, professionalism has long since left the scene. The coroner answers, “I have work to do. There will be time for the other later . . .”

I sob for the next hour.

3:35 the boys walk home from school. By now I know that most of the casualties are students between 5 and 10 years old. I try not to over-react to the boys. Don’t want to freak them out, don’t want to interrupt the daily routine. We have snacks, they do homework and I check it.

Homework done we have root beer floats and as always I have to wash Kate’s face, hands and everything within reach. Still trying not to let on anything is wrong I send them up to the “kid’s room” to watch Cartoon Network.

Now that I’m alone I break down again. I cry, sob, boohoo uncontrollably in the privacy of my bedroom away from the kids for an hour or so. I gotta’ pull myself together ‘cause there are more snacks to disperse and stories to be heard about the school day.

7:30 Mom gets home to collect her kids. Her eyes are red. Mine too. We talk briefly and she hugs the little ones hard enough to elicit grunts. Thank God it’s the weekend and she can keep them close.

Shortly after they leave my wife comes home. I tell her of the day’s events. We order Chinese delivery because I’m not able to prepare a meal. I don’t have much of an appetite, stirring the broccoli and beef with my chopsticks. Watch some fluff on TV until 11:00 and go to bed. About 1:00 AM I wake, stare at the darkness for awhile and again break down sobbing out loud waking Lynn. She holds me, trying to comfort me until I finally cry myself to sleep. I wake again around 5:00 and give up on sleep. Make coffee. Sit in the dark. Don’t want to watch TV, can’t deal with what I’ll see.

About 8:30 Lynn comes out all dressed. She has to go to the office to meet deadlines. I have a shopping list so we kiss and go our different ways.

I shop at small ethnic groceries. You can buy 12 oz. of spice for less than the .3 oz. jar at the megamart and it’s an excuse to ride my motorcycle. I ride across town, select some fresh vegetables and the spices I need and check out. On the way out I see a beautiful 4 year old girl; little round face, flawless ebony skin, huge bright eyes and pigtails. The kind of innocent beauty that makes me wish I had a studio again. I break down. People stare as I leave, tears streaming as I pull my helmet on. Half blind I ride the 6 or so miles back to the house and hunker down to pull myself together. I so much want my babies close to me.

Saturday night is a repeat of Friday night. Left over Chinese uneaten. No sleep. Sunday is a repeat of Saturday with wife pulling overtime and me looking at a shopping list that includes necessities for dealing with a two year old. Fruit juice, peanut butter and jelly. I drag myself to the nearest megamart. See a mother and ‘tween daughter. She says something to her mother, they laugh and Mom pulls her close. I leave my half filled cart and going home.

I take over-the-counter drugs to sleep. They work until about 4:00 AM.

Monday morning my daughter drops the boys at school and Kate with me. She’s wearing reflective aviator sunglasses. Kate squeals and lunges into my arms. Mom takes the sunglasses off showing red raw eyes and says, “I have this information but I don’t know how to process it. Why must I be afraid to take my kids to school?” I can’t answer. “There’s a cop at the school house door. Is this what it comes to? Armed guards for kids? I don’t want my kids in an armed camp, it just isn’t right.” I can’t answer. We hug, peck-on-the-cheek and she goes off to work. I hug my grandbaby for the next few hours until she’s sick of Granddad and goes off to watch Elmo. The boys come home, there’s ice cream floats, homework and then the 5 year old hands me note from the school. There’s been a threat taped to the front door of his school. Police are investigating, we’ll be informed and bla bla bla. He asks what it’s about. I tell him somebody said they would do bad things and that’s why the policeman was at his school to keep him safe. He’s okay with that.

Tuesday morning is routine except I take inventory of my life. I collect curio and relic firearms. I have a number of long guns designed in the 19th century and two semi automatic pistols. When I say long guns I mean so long you have to hold them vertically to make a u-turn in the average hallway. They are historic artifacts. I bought the short guns because each has a unique design characteristic, each unique in history, design and function. I’m there. I don’t need the semi auto pistols. I don’t feel the need for self defense. I don’t even enjoy shooting them the few times a year they come out of the locked gun safe. Up until now I’ve seen them only as curiosities, an abstract part of history. I can’t look at them like that anymore.

I call the BATF&E and ask how to dispose of them because I have a federal firearms license and am liable to scrutiny of every gun I have by serial number. I don’t want to give them away, I want them destroyed. The agent informs me that the guns must be cut in pieces through the receiver. What if I field strip them and smash each piece with my sledge hammer? No, that isn’t acceptable. Someone might find the parts and re-assemble them. I said, “Hon, you haven’t seen me and my hammer.” She chucked and said she was sorry, the law is the law. I should contact local law enforcement and turn them over to them, get a receipt. Better yet call Navarro county sheriff’s department, they have a program that melts the guns down into paperweights.

======================
At this point I stopped writing. I had finally run out of emotion, the gaping wound in my soul was beginning to crust over.

As an end note, I had become a FFL so I could buy the antiques for my grandchildren. One for each of them, a piece of history. Now that they are turning 18 and can legally own one they seem to have no interest. I guess the endless active shooter drills have had an affect. I'll have them destroyed.

I'll not be responding to any replies.

Yesterday a gunner told me I had to compromise with them.

I have been told that I must compromise with gunners to get any additional restrictions on guns. Let us see what gunners have now before we consider giving them more in exchange for any crumbs they offer.

Gunners have:

More guns than people in the US. Sixty-five times more guns than all the military and all the police forces in the country combined.

Legal protection for gun sellers, makers and distributors from civil suits. The only industry with such protection.

Unfettered access to guns without a background check. They're called 80% receivers and are available on the internet to ANYONE. Even a 13 year old can buy and assemble a gun kit.

'Must issue' licenses and concealed carry permits. No human intervention regardless of local and familial concerns.

Guaranteed purchase of a gun in 3 days even if the background check hasn't been completed by a system that doesn't even report all agencies to the background data base.

Over the counter retail access to military grade weaponry that can be easily and legally converted to emulate full auto machine guns. Bump stocks are on again/off again legal and auto-sear/forced-reset trigger assemblies haven't been addressed.

100 round magazines available over the internet with no background check to go with those converted full auto guns some of which were assembled from 80% receivers with no background check.

Thirteen states have 'constitutional carry' with no restrictions on concealed or open carry, many with no background checks or training.

Thirty eight states have 'stand your ground' laws allowing anyone who feels threatened to shoot another person without the responsibility to retreat if possible. Note the words “feels threatened”.

Those are just the highlights of what I'm supposed to compromise with. What do they want for a compromise?

Universal reciprocity for concealed carry licenses; get a CC in one state and carry anywhere across state lines.

“Clarify” the 1934 National Firearms Act that defines guns that are regulated, ie machine guns, sawed off shotguns and rifles, silencers and 'other destructive devices'. The NFA requires a $200 tax and extensive background check for each weapon bought. Yes, Virginia, you can buy a full automatic machine gun for just a $200 tax and the retail price. Also grenade launchers and other assorted things. 'Clarify' is gunner shorthand for eliminating all the distinctions and selling all this stuff to everyone over the counter at the local gun store.

What next? Subsidize the ownership of guns? A monthly gun supply tax credit?

So, NO I'm not compromising with gunners. FUCK GUNNERS.

It's been nine years.

Nine years since I sat with my 3 year old grand daughter in my lap watching the reporting of Sandy Hook on MSNBC.

Nine years since 20 first grade children were shot 400 times and 6 of their teachers died with them.

Nine years and to this day the last five minutes of their lives reverberates in my head. The sound of gunshots in a small room, the screaming, calling for Mommy and Daddy, the smell of cordite and blood.

Just like it was yesterday.

We have done NOTHING in nine years.

WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH US?
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