Another mass shooting in the US.

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  • The effing governor of Texas will be pleased that the rights of an 18-year-old pothead to purchase and own a deadly weapon have been upheld.


    The primary school kids who undoubtedly were of mixed race have no rights at all and The Governor doesn't give a damn.

  • Yet another shooting frenzy and to be honest it's news I don't take much notice of as it's become so usual.

    Biden of course read the script with the usual predictable pathetic response. :rolleyes:

    All Biden can do is issue those pathetic response. Let's not forget he is on the side that wants to dramatically change gun laws. However, wanting something isn't the same s making it happen, especially in U.S. law. Most the other side doesn't want those changes and are backed by powerful and corrupt lobbying groups that have brainwashed 25% of the nation and paid off another 25%.


    Then you have to consider the American people. When Australia suffered the Port Arthur Massacre in 1996 (?), the people of the country and lawmakers were outraged enough in a majority to make sweeping changes. For some reason, there are enough Americans who do not get similalry outraged... enough to prevent any meaningful change. And make mistake, mass shootings are an American problem that the rest of the world barely ever deals with, but Americans themselves are unwilling or unable to detach themselves from the gun.


    So Biden - a president admittedly adept at making predictable responses - is tacking this subject with one arm tied behind his back.

  • It's absolutely heartbreaking this news when you consider that young children were killed and brings back memories of Sandy Hook.

    Unfortunately I can't see the laws changing either because of the deep rooted gun culture ingrained in society, not to mention the gun lobby as others have said.

    After Dunblane and possibly Hungerford, everything about guns changed in the UK almost overnight and the laws regarding gun ownership are incredibly rigorous. But then the UK has never really had a gun culture per se.

  • But then the UK has never really had a gun culture per se.

    That's the difference. Gun ownership in the UK is miniscule compared to the US. Those who legally own guns only use them for sporting purposes plus the odd eejit who illegally owns one for illegal purposes which is thankfully rare.

    I hate to say it but as these kids were non 'white American' it won't have muchimpact.

  • This shooting has saddened and hurt so deeply that I can’t yet even write about it.


    Why would any other country ever attack us? Potential enemies can just wait around while we shoot ourselves and our children, and simultaneously destroy our own government.


    Insanity.


    The effing governor of Texas will be pleased that the rights of an 18-year-old pothead to purchase and own a deadly weapon have been upheld.


    The primary school kids who undoubtedly were of mixed race have no rights at all and The Governor doesn't give a damn.

    In 2015, Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas tweeted that he was “embarrassed” that his state was ranked second (behind California) in requests to buy new guns, albeit still with one million requests. “Let’s pick up the pace, Texans,” he wrote.


    Nicholas Kristof

    NYT, 24 May, 2022

  • I am not suprised about this event. Very respectfully, I regret to say, even because I was also pro-American, that the USA needs urgently a change in the weapons Law, to attain the proper level as it deserves for many others things to be considered a civilized country.

  • For people in other countries, perhaps this can explain why it is impossible to get vin safety legislation passed:



    Followed by


    Every time there is a mass murder in the USA, Republican politicians express amazement, and offer hollow “thoughts and prayers” to the grieving families, while continuing to take money from the NRA and continuing to make it easier and easier for people to buy high-powered weapons of war.


    According to NBC news,

    Pledging to keep Texas a “bastion of freedom,” Gov. Greg Abbott in June signed seven laws, one of which allows people to legally carry handguns without licenses.

    “Texas will always be the leader in defending the Second Amendment, which is why we built a barrier around gun rights this session,” Abbott said that day, flanked by representatives of the National Rifle Association.


    Yet today, he cries crocodile tears for the children who were murdered, victims to his obeisance to the NRA.


    The Washington Post:


    More than 311,000 American students have experienced gun violence at school since the Colorado attack at Columbine High School in April, 1999.



    The New Yorker:


    A26753.jpg


    It’s past time for a system update.


  • As a foreigner - albeit from the country that provoked the 2nd Ammendment in the first place - I have never really understood how the "Well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State," part seems to have been severed from the " the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed" bit.


    During WW2, the United Kingdom established the equivalent of an armed milita. Civillian volunteers brought their own guns or were issued with arms - when available - from the state and trained, drilled and patrolled their neighbourhoods in anticipation of enemy attack. It was called The Home Guard and was disbanded in 1945 when the danger had passed.


    I don't believe any Redcoats with tall, black hats have been spotted trying to infiltrate and destabilise the USA for several hundred years so I guess the danger could be considered to have passed and the militia ought to have been disbanded. But if the danger hasn't passed why isn't this well regulated Militia out training, drilling and patrolling with the most severe of penalties for those who shirk their duty?


    Incidentally, I understand that in the USA self defence is a Common Law right - something the US took from us Brits and liked so much they decided to keep it - and that it is nothing to do with the 2nd Ammendment. Yet the two appear often to be conflated. Have I got this wrong?

  • We Americans are forced to be armed to the teeth in case you Brits decide to revert to your old tricks.


    Oh - - WAIT. Why would you want to have the US back on your hands? It’s a mess.


    You are right, bebopalula : second amendment and self defense are separate rights. The right to self defense is a common sense clear right. The 2nd amendment’s meaning has completely morphed from defense of country, to the freedom to shoot anything that moves. Insanity.

    (And what was ‘Well Regulated’ about the so-called Militias that answered a madman’s call to lead a coup attempt and storm the US Capitol?)


    Doesn't help when every US cop drama series the missus watches always seems to have guns involved.


    Without guns, there ARE no US cop dramas.


    I am not suprised about this event. Very respectfully, I regret to say, even because I was also pro-American, that the USA needs urgently a change in the weapons Law, to attain the proper level as it deserves for many others things to be considered a civilized country.

    Consider this, Carlos:

    There are 60 million more guns in the US than there are people.

  • I just heard someone who worked for the Department of Homeland Security quote that staggering number on the MSNBC program called Deadline Whitehouse. I believe it was Miles Taylor. I’ll be on the lookout for an attribution, GJ.

  • Some perspective from historian Heather Cox Richardson this morning:


    One of the key things that drove the rise of the current Republican Party was the celebration of a certain model of an ideal man, patterned on the image of the American cowboy. Republicans claimed to be defending individual men who could protect their families if only the federal government would stop interfering with them. Beginning in the 1950s, those opposed to government regulation and civil rights decisions pushed the imagery of the cowboy, who ran cattle on the Great Plains from 1866 to about 1886 and who, in legend, was a white man who worked hard, fought hard against Indigenous Americans, and wanted only for the government to leave him alone. 


    That image was not true to the real cowboys, at least a third of whom were Black or men of color, or to the reality of government intervention in the Great Plains, which was more extensive there than in any other region of the country. It was a reaction to federal laws after the Civil War defending Black rights in the post–Civil War South, laws white racists said were federal overreach that could only lead to what they insisted was “socialism.” 


    In the 1950s, the idea of an individual hardworking man taking care of his family and beholden to no one was an attractive image to those who disliked government protection of civil rights, and politicians who wanted to dissolve business regulation pulled them into the Republican Party by playing to the mythology of movie heroes like John Wayne. Part of that mythology, of course, was the idea that men with guns could defend their families, religion, and freedom against a government trying to crush them. By the 1980s, the National Rifle Association had abandoned its traditional stance promoting gun safety and was defending “gun rights” and the Republican Party; in the 1990s, talk radio hosts like Rush Limbaugh fed the militia movement with inflammatory warnings that the government was coming for a man’s guns, destroying his ability to protect his family. 


    That cowboy image has stoked an obsession with guns and with military hardware and war training in police departments. It feeds a conviction that true men dominate situations, both at home and abroad, with violence. That dominance, in turn, is supposed to protect society’s vulnerable women and children. 


    In 2008, in the District of Columbia v. Heller decision, the Supreme Court said that individuals have a right to own firearms outside of membership in a militia or for traditional purposes such as hunting or self-defense, and dramatically limited federal regulation of them. Justice Antonin Scalia, who wrote the majority decision, was a leading “originalist” on the court, eager to erase the decisions of the post-WWII courts that upheld business regulation and civil rights. 


    In 2004, a ten-year federal ban on assault weapons expired, and since then. mass shootings have tripled. Zusha Elinson, who is writing a history of the bestselling AR-15 military style weapon used in many mass shootings, notes that there were about 400,000 AR-15 style rifles in America before the assault weapons ban went into effect in 1994. Today, there are 20 million.


    For years now, Republicans have stood firmly against measures to guard Americans against gun violence, even as a majority of Americans support commonsense measures like  background checks. Notably, after the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in 2012, when a gunman murdered 20 six- and seven-year-old students and 6 staff members, Republicans in the Senate filibustered a bipartisan bill sponsored by Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Pat Toomey (R-PA) that would have expanded background checks, killing it despite the 55 votes in favor of it.


    Since Sandy Hook, the nation has suffered more than 3500 mass shootings, and Republicans have excused them by claiming they didn’t actually happen, or by insisting we need more guns so there will be “a good guy with a gun” to take out a shooter, or that we need to “harden targets,” or that we need more police in the schools (which has simply led to more student arrests), or as Senator Ted Cruz said today, to limit the number of doors in schools, or, as a guest on Fox News Channel personality Sean Hannity’s show said, to put “mantraps” and trip wires in the schools.


    The initial story of what happened on Tuesday in Uvalde fit the Republican myth. Police spokespeople told reporters that a school district police officer confronted the shooter outside the building before he barricaded himself in a classroom, killing 19 and wounding 22 others in his rampage. 


    But as more details are emerging today, they are undermining the myth itself. 


    Robb Elementary School, where the murders took place, had already been “hardened” with the town investing more than $650,000 in security enhancements, but the shooter apparently entered through an unlocked door. The Uvalde police department consumes 40% of the town’s budget and has its own Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) unit. And yet, the stories that are emerging from Uvalde suggest that the shooter fired shots outside the school for 12 minutes before entering it and that he was not, in fact, confronted outside. Police officers arrived at the same time he entered the school, but they did not go in until after he had been in the building for four minutes. Seven officers then entered, but the lone gunman apparently drove them out with gunfire, and they stayed outside, holding back frantic parents, until Border Patrol tactical officers arrived a full hour later. 


    Parents tried to get the police to go in but instead found themselves under attack for interfering with an investigation. One man was thrown to the ground and pepper sprayed. U.S. Marshals arrested and handcuffed Angeli Rose Gomez, whose children were in the school and who had had time to drive 40 miles to get to them, for interfering as she demanded they do something. Gomez got local officers she knew to talk the Marshals into releasing her. Then she jumped the school fence, ran in, grabbed her two kids, and ran out. 


    A Texas Department of Safety official told CNN’sWolf Blitzer tonight that the law enforcement officers at the school were reluctant to engage the gunman because “they could’ve been shot, they could’ve been killed.”


    There are still many, many questions about what happened in Uvalde, but it seems clear that the heroes protecting the children were not the guys with guns, but the moms and the dads and the two female teachers who died trying to protect their students: Eva Mireles and Irma Garcia. News reports today say that Garcia’s husband, Joseph, died this morning of a heart attack, leaving four children. 


    Last week, in the aftermath of the deadly attack on a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, Democrats in the House of Representatives quickly passed a a domestic terrorism bill. Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tried to get the Senate to take it up today. It would have sparked a debate on gun safety. Republicans blocked it. In the aftermath of Tuesday’s massacre, only five Republicans have said they are willing to consider background checks for gun purchases. That is not enough to break a filibuster. 


    Last night, Texas candidate for governor Beto O’Rourke confronted Texas governor Greg Abbott at a press conference. Last year, Abbott signed at least seven new laws to make it easier to obtain guns, and after the Uvalde murders, he said tougher gun laws are not “a real solution.” O’Rourke offered a different vision for defending our children than stocking up on guns. "The time to stop the next shooting is right now, and you are doing nothing," O'Rourke said, standing in front of a dais at which Abbott sat. "You said this is not predictable…. This is totally predictable…. This is on you, until you choose to do something different…. This will continue to happen. Somebody needs to stand up for the children of this state or they will continue to be killed, just like they were killed in Uvalde yesterday.”


    Uvalde mayor Don McLaughlin shouted profanities at O'Rourke; Texas Republican lieutenant governorDan Patrick told the former congressman, "You're out of line and an embarrassment”; and Senator Ted Cruz told him, “Sit down.” 


    But this evening the New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays announced they would use their social media channels not to cover tonight’s game but to share facts about gun violence. “The devastating events that have taken place in Uvalde, Buffalo and countless other communities across our nation are tragedies that are intolerable.” 


  • Consider this, Carlos:

    There are 60 million more guns in the US than there are people.

    I understand. That is a weird thing of the USA. Although, I have to recognize that 70 years ago, in Argentina, you could purchase weapons (only for hunting) in many places without being registered or authorized. At home we had a .38 silvered revolver (never used), a Winchester rifle pump action .22 rifle and a Beretta musket. We used this only to hunt a special wild animal called vizcacha (like a rabbit) very common in the Cordoba hills.

    But I never see a slaughter of a mad person like those of the USA.

    Perhaps there are strong cultural reasons that allows to do that. What is a scandal is that the Rifle Association gives money to some Republican representatives. That is mere purchase of influences.

  • Now it seems that the authorities, including the governor, have lied about the delays in killing the shooter and he was only shot dead 90 minutes after the alarm was raised.

    Not only that but frantic parents were cuffed and pepper sprayed for frantically wanting to rush into the school as any worried parent would.

    What a tragic mess and the blame-game has started already.

    Quote

    One mother told the Wall Street Journal that she was briefly handcuffed and accused of impeding a police investigation, after demanding - along with other parents - that officers enter the school. Angeli Rose Gomez said she saw one father thrown to the ground by an officer, another pepper-sprayed and a third who was tasered.

    "The police were doing nothing," said Ms Gomez, who was eventually released. She said she jumped over the school fence and ran inside to rescue her two children. "They [the police] were just standing outside the fence. They weren't going in there or running anywhere."

    "They say they rushed in," Javier Cazares, whose daughter Jacklyn was killed in the attack, told the Associated Press. "We didn't see that."

    "A lot of us were arguing with the police, 'You all need to go in there. You all need to do your jobs'. Their response was, 'We can't do our jobs because you guys are interfering.'"

  • Sounds a shambles. I wonder how he got into the school in the first place....did he just walk in? You'd think there would be better security.

    He went in through an unlocked door apparently.

    Why didn't they just storm the building immediately? It wouldn't have been difficult to get eyes on the shooter and to kill him before he shoots everybody, because anyone entering a school with a gun is intent on killing as many people as they can.

    Uvalde shooting: Texas shooting response was 'wrong', says official
    'If I thought it would help, I would apologise,' state safety chief says at heated press conference.
    www.bbc.com