If Only Everyone Was Armed

Despite Rachel’s plea, we’re going to sit out the gun-control debate, because, well, this is America, and that question’s been settled for now. But every time something like this happens, one side always claims that the problem isn’t too many guns, but not enough.

Let’s put that claim to the test. One of the Fox-embraced “heroes” of Saturday’s shooting is Joe Zamudio, who “was in a nearby drug store when the shooting began, and he was armed.” Joe rushes out, booger hook on the bang switch, and helps take down Loughner.

Just one thing:

But before we embrace Zamudio’s brave intervention as proof of the value of being armed, let’s hear the whole story. “I came out of that store, I clicked the safety off, and I was ready,” he explained on Fox and Friends. “I had my hand on my gun. I had it in my jacket pocket here. And I came around the corner like this.” Zamudio demonstrated how his shooting hand was wrapped around the weapon, poised to draw and fire. As he rounded the corner, he saw a man holding a gun. “And that’s who I at first thought was the shooter,” Zamudio recalled. “I told him to ‘Drop it, drop it!'”

But the man with the gun wasn’t the shooter. He had wrested the gun away from the shooter. “Had you shot that guy, it would have been a big, fat mess,” the interviewer pointed out.

Zamudio agreed.

Again, we’re sitting out the firearms debate. But it’s fair to say that the Fog of War also applies to mall parking lots.

Friendly Firearms [Slate, via Weigel]

Ah, that old bugaboo… Target identification.

I like walking around with my hand on it, too.

Is that Lolita Davidavich? She looks fab.

Sorta on topic, I saw Paul Blart: Mall Cop dubbed in Spanish when I was in Mexico, and *SHOCK* it was actually subversively funny.

@¡Andrew!: Might be. I was looking for a Tarantino still, but this one cropped better.

Meanwhile, via the Gray Lady, we hear from the 9 year old’s neighbor who took her to meet the Congresswoman…

Bill Hileman, whose wife Susan Hileman was shot three times, said that when he visited her bedside, she asked him, “What about Christina?” Ms. Hileman had been holding hands outside the supermarket with the Hilemans’ nine-year-old neighbor, Christina Green, when the shots rang out; the girl was also hit and later died of her wounds.

Mr. Hileman said that though his wife had been in a morphine-induced haze, she was clearly devastated when he told her that the girl had died. “We’re going to have that as an ongoing issue that we’ll be dealing with,” Mr. Hileman said about his wife’s feelings of guilt. Ms. Hileman had invited Christina to accompany her to the event at the supermarket that morning because of the girl’s interest in politics.

My fingers are firmly in my ears and a blindfold is securely over my eyes now, since the last few days of nooz have simply been to horrifying and soul-crushing to think about.




@nojo: Since I can’t be brave enough to venture into FauxNewsLand, I can’t answer this firsthand but maybe you can – in making this guy a “hero” of the day, has Faux deigned to mention the gay Latino intern who knew first aid and probably saved Giffords’ life with his actions right after the shooting?
@Mistress Cynica: I know, right? Full story here.

@SanFranLefty: I had to watch an hour of that shit recently when DB was supposed to be on. he got bumped, of course.

@SanFranLefty: You’ve just stated the premise of tomorrow morning’s pending post, soon as I look into it.

@redmanlaw: Yeah, that spot never ran. I had pro face makeup put on for nothing. Right now, I’m supposed to be talking to a big AM station in St. Louis about the oil spill (it was bad . . .) but maybe the Arch fell over or something — they ain’t called.

@redmanlaw: I had garlic fries with Lefty today. I am vampire-proof.

@SanFranLefty: I’ll be over in the corner with Andrew. LALALALALALALA.

Huh, just watched the Rachel segment noj’ linked in the article. Interesting discussion, and no, we haven’t learned a goddamn thing from all the various gun massacres. You’ll never get emotion out of the discussion of guns, at least not until a couple generations pass (and almost certainly not even then).

Also, we’re highest in the world in terms of guns per capita? Not surprised, just another statistic in which the US is revealed as the sinking ship it really is (see also education, heathcare cost, etc.).

And before I hurt anyone’s head: I may be a gun owner, but I put them in the category of luxurious extravagances that I would readily give up if I had a reason, like many of the things I do.

@IanJ: I liked the repeated use of “unimaginable” in contemporary reports of each incident over the years.

@Dodgerblue: I warned you, dude. Luckily for your fellow passengers, the SFO-LAX flight is less than an hour…

You funny Yanquis. Guns are bad. Civilized countries don’t allow guns. Also. They have free health care. And education. They also subsidize artists so they don’t have to write shite for TV. However, they didn’t invent the iPhone. So.

I hear the call of the fjords. Jyoo hoo!

@nojo: It’s like the annoying and inevitable use of the word “senseless”–when does gunning down innocent people ever make sense? Are we expected to look at such an event and say, “Why yes, what a sensible thing to do.”
Oh, unless the targets are brown furriners. Never mind. Back to the corner. Lalalalalala….

@IanJ: “Also, we’re highest in the world in terms of guns per capita?” Let’s see . . . seven or eight semi-auto pistols and revolvers in .22, .38/.357 and 9 mm; three shotguns, two 12s and a 20 gauge; three lever action rifles in .250 Savage, .30-30 and .308 Win; three bolt action rifles in .243 and.30-06, two of which are M1903A3 WWI-WWII US battle rifles; and, a couple of .22 rifles, one semi-auto and the other a pump action. I’m doing my part.

@redmanlaw: Oh good God, you’re not going to bring reason to bear?

@IanJ: I’ve spent the afternoon looking at school dropout data. I’m ready for a drink.

@nojo: I guess that is the corollary of the other RW talking point de jure:
Crazy Brown Mooslem Dude Targeting and Killing Soldiers at Ft. Hood = Political Terrorist
Crazy White Christian Dude Targeting Congresswoman and Killing Government Workers in Tucson = Just a Crazy* Guy, How Dare You Use the T Word?

*Don’t get me started on the mental health angle of this.

@Mistress Cynica: Sooner or later, we all become Andy Rooney.

@nojo: I would never allow my eyebrows to go to all hell like that.

@redmanlaw: No doubt, I’m doing my part as well, one guy with three .22 rifles. If I thought getting rid of them would have any actual effect on gun violence in this country, I’d do so, but I’m pretty sure it’s not the responsible gun owners who lock things up and follow all the rules we have to worry about.

It boils down to the simple argument that “crazy people will do crazy things” — granted, that’s a simplification. Certainly, the ready availability of guns acts as a multiplier on what a crazy dude can do. But the fact is that Britain has a problem with knife crime (guns being largely illegal). The crazies don’t go away, and dealing with them is far more useful* than dealing with what tools they use to accomplish their crazy. Yet we don’t even do that, and I’m sure the feds and most of the states are currently reducing their spending on mental health facilities and resources, rather than increasing it.

And to your point @SanFranLefty: we’re a nation of terrorists already, just look at the terror we inspire in other countries. Calling Ft. Hood terrorism and Tuscon not-terrorism is kind of an academic point in my mind, although it does clearly indicate the racism still prevalent here.

* Because the political climate in the US won’t allow us to do anything useful toward curbing gun ownership, and I don’t want to get into that debate. Gun ownership stands along with “everyone needs a car” and a bunch of other things that are basic assumptions in US America that make no logical sense to me, but I’m not quick-witted enough to actually debate.

@nojo: D’ja ever wonder why Filipino bottoms always shave off too much of their pubes?

@SanFranLefty: @Tommmcatt is with Karin Marie on This One: Here’s the thing: After a couple of charming specials, Rooney was brought to 60 Minutes as the resident Old Fart to replace the Jack/Shana shouting matches.

When he started, I could not legally drink alcohol. Now I’m qualified for AARP, and Andy Rooney is still the resident Old Fart.

Some ironies take a generation to marinate.

@nojo: You’re qualified for AARP? BWHAHAHAHA!

I mean, um, really? Um, good for you! Bet you get money off at Denny’s too!

@redmanlaw: I think Eugene’s own Pete DeFazio is an NRA member, although he doesn’t play that up around elections.

Then again, in predominantly rural Lane County, rifles are for hunting. Not much small-arms stuff.

@redmanlaw: All cool but the way things are going, candidates are going to have to prove they love guns but live for the chance to kill with a mounted bayonet.

These are the names of my county’s homicide victims of 2010. Of the people killed in Chester, only one death was not firearm related.

2010 Murder Victims in Delco:

Jan. 3 — Lefenus Mays, Chester

Jan. 16 — James G. Morrison, Chester

Feb. 16 — Charles Johnson, Chester

March 18 — Tyrik Richardson, Upper Darby

March 23 — Dana Felts, Upper Chichester

April 13 — Mohamed Kamara, East Lansdowne

April 17 — Thomas Lee Green Jr., Chester

April 19 — Clyde Shockley, Upper Darby

May 1 — George Shrom, Upper Chichester

May 5 — Larry Carter, Chester

May 21 — Javonne Chappell, Chester

June 1 — Jabree Hughes, Chester

June 9 — Robert Beyers, Ridley Township

June 11 — Raymar Holmes, Chester

June 14 — Terrance Webster, Chester (2 years old)

June 15 — Yadullah Muhammed, Chester

June 18 — Richard Gale Jr., Darby Township

June 18 — Diamere Reed, Chester

June 19 — Kennard Jones, Upper Darby

June 21 — James Stropas, Springfield

June 27 — Keith Edmonds, Chester

June 29 — Andre Morales, Chester

July 24 — Rahim Hicks, Chester

Aug. 1 — Jabree Richardson, Chester

Aug. 19 — William “Brian” Miles, Chester

Aug. 28 — Ryan Duncan, Upper Darby

Aug. 29 — Mary Agnes Rayfield, Springfield

Sept. 6 — Tyrone Thompson Jr., Chester

Sept. 6 — Jeffrey Joyner Jr., Chester

Oct. 12 — Whylisha Foreman, Chester

Oct. 30 — Emerson Price, Chester

Nov. 9 — Paul Johnson, Chester

Dec. 11 — Darlene Montgomery, Chester

Dec. 24 — Terrance Lewis, Chester

CQ Press, which annually ranks the nation’s most dangerous cities with populations of 75,000 or more, lists nearby Camden, N.J., as the second-most dangerous city in the United States.

Chester, with a population of about half that of Camden’s, is not included in the data. However, comparing the two cities’ per capita murder rate, Chester’s is nearly double that of Camden and more than four times higher than Philadelphia’s.

Do I have to register my firearms in Pennsylvania?

No, in fact in Pennsylvania it is actually illegal for any government or police agency to keep a registry of firearms per 18 Pa.C.S. § 6111.4 (Registration of firearms). If you legally possess bring your firearms into the [sic] Pennsylvania or come into possession of the firearms legally, no further action is required.

Wanna open carry that unregistered firearm in PA? No problem (with minor exceptions):

Open Carry – Yes, It’s Legal

In Pennsylvania, persons 18 years of age and older whom are not prohibited by law from owning firearms may openly carry a handgun in plain sight with no license except in vehicles*, cities of the first class** (Philadelphia) and where prohibited specifically by statute.

Ref.: Title 18, ch.61, Subchapter A. Uniform Firearms Act & Commonwealth v. Ortiz

* Open carry in a vehicle requires a valid PA License to Carry Firearms (LTCF) or a carry license from ANY other state. Ref: Title 18 §6106

** Open carry in a city of the first class requires a valid PA LTCF or a carry license from a reciprocal state. Ref: Title 18 §6108, Title 18 §6106

[ALLOWED IN BARS!!]Carrying concealed (with LTCF) or openly in establishments that serve alcohol is allowed in Pennsylvania.

There is no stipulation in neither the PA code nor case law that a PA LTCF holder must carry concealed. Furthermore, lawful open carry of a firearm is NOT grounds for revocation of a PA LTCF as it is neither an illegal nor dangerous act.

Little legislative protection for children.

Firearm deaths — Children:

Almost 24,000 children and adolescents were killed by guns in the U.S. between 1999 and 2006. The study, which appears in the online issue of the journal Pediatrics, looked at the circumstances of those deaths and found 15,190 were homicides, 7,082 were suicides and 1,377 were classified as unintentional. The most urban counties experienced disproportionately higher rates of firearm homicide, while the most rural counties experienced higher rates of suicide and unintentional firearm deaths. To reduce these deaths, prevention strategies should be tailored to the needs of these distinct geographic areas.

“Gun violence doesn’t just happen in big cities; it is everyone’s problem,” said study author Michael L. Nance, MD, a pediatric surgeon and director of the trauma program at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “Prevention initiatives should take into account these rural-urban differences.”

National statistics as of 1998: Approximately 31,000 deaths and 64,500 nonfatal injuries treated in hospital EDs in 1998.

I’m too tired to look up actuarial life tables, but IIRC, if a black male survives to the age of 25, he’s golden. His life expectancy is still about 5 years less than a white male born the same year.

Too many people are dying from gun violence.

My 15-year-old cousin was shot and killed in his home while he babysat his 2-year-old sister. She was unharmed.

My mother’s ex-boyfriend’s wife was shot and killed in her home because someone was angry with the husband. Their two children were under the age of 5 and were unharmed.

My cousin is doing federal time for selling drugs. He had a handgun on him when he was arrested.

Two of my high school classmates (girls) were shot and killed between junior and senior year.

Another classmate tried to commit suicide with her father’s handgun. She shot herself in the abdomen. She survived, but one of her legs is paralyzed.

My cousin cussed me out and waved a handgun in my face the last time I was in NorCal. I don’t remember how I got out of there. I managed to get his nephew out, too.

“forget about it jake, it’s philly.”


Does this mean that we kill more of each other than the terrorists do?

@JNOV: O M G …

I always had the impression that PA was way more civilized than that. I am crossing it off the list of possible states to visit or move to.

has it escaped everyone’s attention that stinque’s 2 craziest commenters are both from philadelphia?

LY sister J

I thought it was always sunny in Phillie, baby…

how much do you love that show? besides it being one of the funniest things on the tv, i get a little misty at the opening shots that make the city look so beautiful. and it is. boo hoo. i’m sane enough to remember what i’ve already written which is, when the City of Brotherly Love, the city that gave birth to our country, becomes the Homicide Capital of the Nation- well, doesn’t that say it all?

It is the most warped twisted insane show on TV.

Nightman… fighter of the Dayman…

i want to add to JNOV’s excellent research for those not in the know, that Camden, NJ is about 20 feet from philly. and WTF is going on in Chester??? also 20 feet.

@IanJ: “But the fact is that Britain has a problem with knife crime (guns being largely illegal).” A person with a knife can’t kill or maim 20 people in less than 10 seconds, OTOH. Sure, outlaw knives and then there will be a problem with stick crime. The point being, people who don’t know how to manage anger or are demented will use whatever weapons is at hand. I have a client who went to prison for robbing someone using a frying pan as a weapon. Nothing can match firearms for sheer number of people killed or hurt. I don’t think it violates the principle of a “well-regulated militia” to say that people who decide to own guns have to prove they’re of sane mind, pass background checks, take gun-safety classes, get insurance for any damage or death or trauma their weapons may cause, and occasionally get re-licensed.

2nd Amendment analysis of what the word “militia” means for another day.

@JNOV and @JNOV: Love you, babe.

@baked: I’m glad I didn’t know any of this when my kid went to school mear Philly. She suffered no crime until her semester away in Bristol, England, where she was pickpocketed her first night there.

@JNOV: So far this year there have been 12 homicides in Prince George’s County (which straddles DC’s NE and SE borders) compared to 96 total last year. A few were stabbings, but the rest were shootings, and most were drug-related.

@SanFranLefty: Right there with ya. Guns are an incredible force multiplier (I thought I included that in the post you referenced, but maybe not). My point was just that:

Exhibit A: Political climate won’t allow us to outlaw guns

Exhibit B: Providing better tools and resources for anger management and mental illness would obviate the need to outlaw guns (from the standpoint of unbalanced people using them, anyway)

I don’t think, and wasn’t trying to argue, that guns are necessary to life in the US. I was trying to say that given that we can’t get rid of them, helping people out would go a long way toward solving this particular ill. It would also go a long way toward solving a lot of other ills at the same time, for the same money.

Arguing, in a word, for well-funded and destigmatized mental health care.

she was in the safest enclave there is in the metro area–it’s where i used to live. i did have a neighbor though, craig rabinowitz, who strangled his wife in the bathtub so he could be with his stripper…

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