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.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Remember the 32

Today marks the fourth anniversary of the shooting at Virginia Tech. This blog is to remember the victims. They are more than numbers. They were people- they were sons, daughters, sisters, brothers, cousins and good friends to many. They are missed. Colin Goddard, survivor of the Virginia Tech shootings, has found his way now to work for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. He has become an articulate spokesman for the issue of gun violence prevention. He has chosen to lobby for sensible gun legislation after the shooting. And he speaks about the horror of that day and finding out later how many of his classmates were shot to death. When the Fix Gun Checks truck came to Minneapolis, I met Omar Samaha whose sister,Reema, was shot at Virginia Tech. I can still see the pain in his eyes and feel the compassion when he meets another victim of gun violence. The side of the truck, by the way, notes that 3324 Americans have become gun homicide victims since the Tucson shootings.

It is also National Crime Victims' Rights Week. So it is apropos to remember the many victims of shootings that occur every day in America. About 70% of homicide victims are due to gun shot wounds. Yes, 32 were shot down at one time on April 16, 2007. But every day in our country, 32 die a day just from a gun homicide. The number goes up to 80 when gun suicides and accidental deaths are included. This moving video is from a press conference earlier this week with Kelly O'Brien, the fiance of Gabe Zimmerman who was shot at the Tucson shopping center. Gabe Zimmerman's father speaks out as well in a moving and unplanned testimony as to why gun laws in our country need to change. And then there is Christina Green, aged 9, shot to death in the Tucson shooting. This moving video is a tribute to her young life.  Remember the victims.

Recently there have been more than a few shameless attacks on gun violence victims in the blogoshpere. Some on the gun rights side feel no compunction about calling one survivor of the Virginia Tech shootings, Colin Goddard, a coward. One tweeter attacked me quite personally. Why is this necessary? Of course it's not but when victims make the gun lobby uncomfortable by telling their stories, some resort to attacking. Victims and survivors are in a unique club of people who have lost their lives or lost a loved one or dear friend due to a shooting. If you read the book, Beyond the Bullet, you will find the stories of many victims and survivors of gun violence as told in their own words. The book is a testimonial and makes a compelling argument for why we need to work towards reducing the number of victims. 32 a day die from gun homicides in America. That is 32 too many. We can prevent and reduce gun injuries and deaths if our leaders have the will and stand up for the victims.

So stop for a minute and remember these 32 who so tragically and senselessly lost their lives 4 years ago today.

Ross Alameddine
Christopher ( Jamie) Bishop
Brian Bluhm
Ryan Clark
Austin Cloyd
Jocelyne Couture-Nowak
Daniel Cueva
Kevin Granata
Matthew Gwaltney
Caitlin Hammaren
Jeremy Herbstritt
Rachel Hill
Emily Hischer
Jerrett Lane
Matthew LaPorta
Henry J. Lee
Liviu Librescu
G.V. Loganathan
Partahi Lumbantoruan
Lauren McCain
Daniel O'Neil
Juan Ortiz
Minal Panchal
Erin Peterson
Michael Pohle Jr.
Julia Pryde
Mary Read
Reema Samaha
Waleed Shaalan
Leslie Sherman
Maxine Turner
Nicole White

We also must remember the 15 who were wounded and survived. Life is difficult and different for those who survive such a horrendous and traumatic shooting. Some of the victims have done well physically after their wounds healed. Others not as well. What remains are the physical and emotional scars.

No comments will be published about this post unless they are in tribute of the victims. Decency and common sense dictate that nothing more needs to be said. In memory of homicide victims........


  1. Thank you for your remembrance of this tragic event! It is sad that nothing has changed since. The best way to remember the victims is to take steps from keeping this from happening again.

    I am happily bringing a survivor, Colin Goddard, here to show "Living for 32" and to speak to groups, even as pro-gun extremists try to derail the conversation by calling him and the other survivors "cowards" because they didn't live up to the extremists' fantasies of self-defense.

    Those pro-gun extremists chose to ignore victims and the potential for more. The truth is inconvenient for their scenarios.

  2. It was a terrible tragedy. One thing I never noticed before and don't remember ever reading any comments on is the ratio of dead to wounded. 2:1 dead to wounded sounds high. How does that compare to other mass shootings and why would it have been like that?

    I'm always amazed at the animosity that Colin receives from the pro-gun crowd.

  3. Dear GMC

    Have seen the video you sent before many to many times. Not convincing to me that Suzanna could have saved her parents had she had her gun. You guys trot this one out as one of the only cases where someone has gone public hoping to persuade us all that more guns make us safer. Evidence shows otherwise. Your sanctimonious comments are rude and annoying. I'm sure you know that. Thanks for trying to share but nothing to do with honoring victims.

  4. Mrs Peterson.

    Please remember that today, April 19, is also an anniversary.

    Its is, and always will be, the core date in American History so conveniently forgotten by your side.

    On this day, Hundreds started out and thousands finished the day, with the start of real Democracy in America. Armed Civilians, not an army, but the People of the New Colonies, first fired that shot heard round the world. Dismiss it as you may, but the date is far more important and far more forgetten than it ever should be.


    PLease note what was the response of the Commanding General of Boston after the battle....

    TO order the seizure of all private weapons in the city of Boston.

    Gun control is tyranny. Always has been, Always will be.

  5. Yes, Tyranny for sure. Get your guns. Tyranny is coming and coming soon!!You just never know what those Socialists are up to. They are going to take away most of your rights at the least.

  6. Yes, Tyranny for sure. Get your guns. Tyranny is coming and coming soon!!You just never know what those Socialists are up to. They are going to take away most of your rights at the least.

    Be sarcastic if you like (irony alert), but given the opportunity, gov't will ALWAYS do exactly that. It's the nature of governments. All governments.

    And we are here to make sure that does not happen. For your benefit, too, japete.

    - GMC70

  7. Thanks GMC for looking out for me but you guys scare me. I won't be asking for your help.