Welcome to Common Gunsense

I hope this blog will provoke some thoughtful reflection about the issue of guns and gun violence. I am passionate about the issue and would love to change some misperceptions and the culture of gun violence in America by sharing with readers words, photos, videos and clips from articles to promote common sense about gun issues. Many of you will agree with me- some will not. I am only one person but one among many who think it's time to do something about this national problem. The views expressed by me in this blog do not represent any group with which I am associated but are rather my own personal opinions and thoughts.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Angry moms and guns and a postscript

Wow- one can't even attend a kids' volleyball game these days without some angry mom pulling out her gun. What is going on? When was the last time you saw a mom, or a dad, for that matter, carrying a gun at a child's sporting event? Oh yes, now I remember. It was Mealanie Hain, the woman who was photographed wearing her pistol in a holster at her daughter's soccer game  in Pennsylania. Obviously it caused concern among the other parents. Last October, tragically, Hain was shot to death by her own husband in a domestic shooting while she was on a video chat. It happened live in front of the person with whom she was chatting. Her husband then shot himself, leaving their children orphaned. Her loaded gun was in her backpack in the room. Could she have defended herself? We can't know that.

My point here is that carrying a gun to a sporting event is not particularly popular amongst the parents or others attending the event. We are talking about children's sports here."The judge who restored Meleanie Hain's concealed-weapon permit last year questioned her judgment and said she had "scared the devil" out of other parents at the soccer field." What could be so dangerous at a child's soccer or volleyball game? As the above link to the story about the Texas mom at the volleyball game, when tempers flair, the loaded gun may just get used senselessly. She was lucky she didn't decide to shoot the opposing team's players and they were even luckier!

There are places where guns are not needed and should not be carried.  It could end in an avoidable tragedy. I have made the point over and over in my blog that where loaded guns are available, sometimes senseless gun deaths happen. Whether or not a law would have prevented the death is a moot point. What we have in our country is a gun culture that has resulted in more and more loaded guns in homes, public places, and private establishments. Gun laws may not prevent these tragedies since most of the guns are owned and carried by law abiding citizens who occasionally make tragic decisions with their guns. But we can hope that common sense will prevail and that people will understand that a gun is not the way to solve problems or settle disputes. And if these sorts of incidents keep happening, the gun lobby may not be as "popular", feared and powerful and their motto that more guns make us safer just won't work. As incident after incident continue to occur, that motto doesn't compute.

As a postscript to this post, I need to remark on the shooting at Johns Hopkins University Hospital. I was relieved to hear that the Doctor who was shot was not the husband of my daughter's best friend and the son-in-law of my good friend. He is in training for Thoracic Surgery at Johns Hopkins. What an uneasy feeling, to say the least. One of the news reports indicated that the shooter was a relative of a patient who was unsatisfied with the patient's treatment at Johns Hopkins. The latest news reports that the man shot and killed a relative and also shot himself. Two dead, one injured.

This is one more case of someone with a gun needlessly and tragically shooting someone when angry or depressed over an everyday situation. It happens every day and it happens far too often. Hospitals, schools, churches, soccer games, volleyball games, at home over fried eggs.... In the cases I have written about and many others in the news, the victims of these shootings or incidents involving guns, had no idea what was coming. Surprised by someone with a gun which bullets can kill in just seconds, they didn't or wouldn't have had a chance to defend themselves. I am quite sure my "friends" from the gun rights position will take issue with this. The comments will be coming soon enough. More guns do not make us safer.


  1. http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2009/10/28/doctor_stabbed_attacker_killed_at_massachusetts_general_hospital/

    A gun saved this Doctor's life.

  2. Thank goodness for those security guards.

  3. According to this story, the video evidence doesn't show whether she had a gun, and there are inconsistencies in the witness stories. I'm not particularly defending her--It appears that she's got some issues, pulling up in a car and arguing with 7th graders.

    If she did have a gun, mere possession in a school is a felony. Problem is, the people who are likely to obey a "don't carry here" rule are the ones least likely to cause a problem.

    And we keep hearing "why do you need a gun at...", as if we think "wow, that volleyball game is dangerous, better arm up". In reality, for those of us who carry regularly the thought process is "will I be going anywhere that a gun isn't allowed, or will be inconvenient?"--If I thought I'd need a gun where I was going, I'd go somewhere else instead.

    Take an honest look at statistics for carry license holders, compared to non-license holders. You can find true stories where license holders screw up--but in disproportionately small numbers.

    If guns cause so much trouble, how come those of us who carry them legally avoid it so well?

  4. Do you gun carriers avoid it? check out my new post.

  5. The man who shot the doctor had a permit to carry: " Pardus -- who legally changed his name from Warren Leo Davis in 1989, according to court records -- had a concealed-weapons permit in Virginia."

  6. Which means what Japete? If he had a CCW (which is debatable coming from you) why would that matter?

    He can't legally carry in MD anyway, permit or not. It's a felony.

  7. missing the point, once again- permit holders are committing crimes- more guns carried in more places may add up to more shootings by permit holders

  8. I stipulated that we are not perfect. We commit crimes--however, we commit them at far,far lower rates than the general population.

    It seems to me that if we were statistically worse than average, that might be a legitimate reason to complain--but if we are average or better, how can that be spun as evidence that our carrying guns is a problem?

  9. just pointing out what's actually going on out there- I use non permit holders as examples as well.

  10. QUOTE: "He can't legally carry in MD anyway, permit or not. It's a felony."

    RESPONSE: "missing the point, once again- permit holders are committing crimes- more guns carried in more places may add up to more shootings by permit holders"

    Beg Pardon, but the quote IS the point. Where permits/licenses to carry a weapon are concerned, there is strict state-to-state reciprocity. Not all states honor from others.

    The blanket statement that more guns carried equals more crimes by permit holders is misleading. As soon as *ANY* permit holder enters the state of Mass (or NY, NJ, MD, among others) if they have a weapon on their person they are now in violation of that state's laws if they do not also have one for the state they are visiting.

    It would better serve the debate, AND serve you, to be a bit clearer and lay out ALL the circumstances. It would have been better for you to point out that it was a Virginia permit holder who illegally entered Mass with a firearm, then committed a further capital crime by shooting an a doctor while in Mass.

    Instead of *Weapons permit holder shoots doctor*...

    Just sayin....

  11. Is there someone at each state border stopping people from entering the state with their concealed gun? My point is that permit holders are committing crimes and shooting people whether they are doing it in their own state or another state. I will keep blogging about them and keep blogging about other shootings by law abiding and not law abiding citizens.