Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

“Do Something!” About Gun Sickness and Disease

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Within a period of 7 days, 35 people were killed, and 64 were injured in 3 mass shootings in our nation.

July 28, 2019 – 5:48 PM PDT Garlic Festival – Gilroy, CA – 3 Killed, 13 Injured

August 3, 2019 – 10:39 AM CDT Wal-Mart – El Paso, TX – 22 Killed, 24 Injured

August 4, 2019 – 1:05 AM EDT – Historic Oregon District, Downtown Dayton, OH – 10 Killed, 27 Injured

Authorities have identified the assailants and weapons used. In each case, the weapons used were military-grade assault style rifles designed for military use, modeled after the Russian AK-47, and the American AR-15. The exclusive purpose of such firearms as weapons of mass destruction is to kill human beings with great ease, and efficiency – to inflict as much carnage and damage upon as many people as possible, in a short period of time. They are ONLY weapons of war, and nothing else. They were NOT designed for any other purpose than to kill human beings with great ease, and efficiency.

The assailants were:
• Connor Stephen Betts, 24, of Bellbrook, OH (Dayton) – deceased;
• Santino William Legan, 19, of Gilroy, CA and Walker Lake, NV (Gilroy) – deceased, and;
• Patrick Wood Crusius, 21, of Allen, TX (El Paso) – captured.

In none of those cases neither “a good guy with a gun,” nor a border wall was effective to either deter, prevent, or stop the deaths and injuries of 127 people.

But those three tragedies were not the only ones.

Ohio’s Republican Governor Mike Dewine addresses Ohioans about the Dayton mass shooting.

Just today – August 5, 2019 – in Brooklyn, the most populous borough in NYC, there was a mass shooting at 216 Buffalo Avenue where 4 people were injured, with no deaths in which “Police confirm a man was shot in the chest, and two women have also been found with gunshots wounds.”
-and-
A shooting with 4 injuries occurred at 5691 Suitland Road, in Suitland, MD.

Yesterday, there were FOUR mass shootings at:
1800 S Kildare Ave in Chicago, one killed, and 7 wounded;
443 E Shelby Dr in Memphis, one killed, 3 wounded;
2900 block of W Roosevelt Rd in Chicago, 7 wounded;
419 E 5th St in Dayton, OH, 10 killed, 26 wounded.

On July 28, the date of the Gilroy, CA Garlic Festival shooting, there were a total of SIX mass shootings throughout the nation.

In the days since, there have been 15 mass shootings, inclusive, in which 47 people were killed, with 115 injured. For details, see: https://www.GunViolenceArchive.org/reports/mass-shooting

According to data from the Gun Violence Archive website, this year to date, there have been 255 mass shootings, resulting in 275 deaths, and 1069 injuries.

No one is happy about this.

No one.

Kentucky Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell proudly displaying the Made-in-China Nike brand athletic shoes which he blames for his fall which ironically, injured his LEFT shoulder. As a child born in Alabama, McConnell also had polio.

The paralytic gridlocked Congress is in summer recess, as GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) is recuperating from a fractured shoulder injury sustained in a fall at his Louisville, KY residence. While calls for a Special Session to deal with the problem have been made, there’s little evidence that Congress will accede to such a request, and will most likely remain adjourned until September 9, when both chambers are scheduled to reconvene. And given the GOP majority, McConnell-led Senate’s abysmal track record of inaction, stalling, and bill-killing, there’s even less likelihood of anything other than inaction.

No one is happy, except perhaps Kentucky Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who, in a Tweet claimed that he asked three Republican Senate committee chairmen “to reflect on the subjects the president raised” and “encouraged them to engage in bipartisan discussion of potential solutions,” while he surreptitiously and obliquely proclaimed in that same Tweet that he was working toward “the progress all Americans deserve.” Yet he announced no concrete solutions, neither promised any potential action, while simultaneously castigating and deriding “partisan theatrics, and campaign-trail rhetoric,” ostensibly by Democrats. McConnell is up for re-election this year.

Hardly anyone expects the President to call a Special Session, though he could, but would more likely attempt to use any temporary adjournment to his advantage by naming judges to permanent, lifetime appointments via recess appointment – although, because the Senate is having pro forma sessions during the summer recess, it would technically prevent, and render moot any such attempt.

Regardless, the body count will increase.

Or, expressed another way, “You wanted in, and now you’re here – driven by hate, consumed by fear. Let the bodies hit the floor. One, something’s got to give.”

Not even a mass shooting on Republican Members of Congress at a practice session for their annual Congressional Baseball Game for Charity on June 14, 2017 could motivate them to act.

On one hand, the extreme says ‘outlaw all guns.’ While on the other hand, the other extreme says ‘do nothing.’ Somewhere in the middle, there’s a happy ground.

It’s tragically and sadly obvious that the current scenario is the extreme of the other hand – which is doing nothing – and such passive aggressive behavior is neither acceptable, nor sustainable.

And to demonstrate how unlikely it is for this obstinate Congress – especially and particularly GOPers – to do ANYTHING to initiate a resolution to the problems posed by such firearm abuse, consider the following:

How should our nation define “mass shooting”?

A.) an incident in which four or more people are shot, whether they were killed or not;

B.) three or more killings in a single incident;

-or-

C.) a multiple homicide incident in which four or more victims are murdered with firearms, within one event, and in one or more locations in close proximity.

You see?

They can’t even “get their shit straight,” i.e., begin to organize and coalesce, cohesively and cogently, in order to unify upon a commonly accepted standard or definition on what the damn thing is! So why in the hell would we expect Congress to be any different, eh? Seriously.

Even the venerable and renown RAND Corporation – an inter-disciplinary, nonpartisan, not-for-profit, problem-solving, fact-based, public policy think-tank of 7 decades endurance – acknowledged in a March 2, 2018 research document entitled “Mass Shootings: Definitions and Trends” that “the government has never defined mass shooting as a separate category, and there is not yet a universally accepted definition of the term. Thus, media outlets, academic researchers, and law enforcement agencies frequently use different definitions when discussing mass shootings, which can complicate our understanding of mass shooting trends and their relationship to gun policy.” They reemphasized the pitifully inexcusable absence of a unified, universally accepted standard definition of ‘mass shooting’ by writing further that, “there is no official standard for the casualty threshold that distinguishes a mass shooting from other violent crimes involving a firearm.”

Howver, it IS fully possible, and simple enough to protect the American public -and- to enjoy Constitutionally-guaranteed liberties – here’s how:

Place all such assault-type/military/para-military type and stylized firearms, their accoutrements, including high-capacity magazines, under the auspices of the National Firearms Act (NFA).

The NFA allows law-abiding citizens to own and possess automatic firearms (defined as any firearm that shoots more than one round per trigger pull), silencers (now popularly called “suppressors”), and sawed-off shotguns (also known as “short-barrelled” shotguns -and- rifles) with the payment of a $200 tax, a FBI background investigation (which includes fingerprint cards and photographs), but ONLY for firearms manufactured BEFORE passage of the Firearm Owners’ Protection Act (FOPA) of 1986. Possession of a Federal Firearms License (FFL) allows individuals to purchase, own, and possess newer weapons, which must also include payment of a Special Occupational Tax (SOT).

Since passage of the NFA, the $200 tax per item assessed by Congress in 1938 has not been increased. When inflation is accounted for from 1938 (date of the law’s passage) to 2019, $200 then amounts to over $3800 now. The tax per item should be increased to $5000, and increased along with the rate of inflation.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has published a 220-page National Firearms Act Handbook about the NFA, about which the bureau states “the principal focus of the handbook is the NFA, the book necessarily covers provisions of the Gun Control Act of 1968 and the Arms Export Control Act impacting NFA firearms businesses and collectors.”

https://www.atf.gov/firearms/docs/guide/atf-national-firearms-act-handbook-atf-p-53208/download

There are several other actions which Congress could take, including mandating Universal Background Checks, eliminating the so-called “Gun Show Loophole” (for which then-Senator Joe Biden was largely responsible), outlawing so-called “straw purchases,” as well as eliminating the “Dickey Amendment” which was named after then-Republican Arkansas Representative Jay Dickey who wrote it, which was supported by the NRA, and in 1996 forbade the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from studying the problem, by denying any such funding for it by simply stating that “none of the funds made available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may be used to advocate or promote gun control.

After Congress had specifically allocated $2.6 million for the CDC to research traumatic brain injury related to firearms injuries, the NRA supported Dickey’s amendment, which was introduced after they lobbied in response to a 1993 CDC-funded study that showed that guns in the home was associated with an increased risk of homicide in the home. Congress then re-allocated that money for other purposes, and has since effectively since halted all research upon the problem.

However, last year, the President signed a spending bill which contained language that could change that. Dickey, who died in 2017, later opposed the legislation which bore his name.

In 2012, Dr. Mark Rosenberg, and Jay Dickey co-authored an Op-Ed which stated in part that “The same evidence-based approach that is saving millions of lives from motor-vehicle crashes, as well as from smoking, cancer and HIV/AIDS, can help reduce the toll of deaths and injuries from gun violence.”

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