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.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Watching me like a hawk

It's always interesting to step away from a passion for a while and do other more important things- like spending time with family on a Thanksgiving holiday. I had a great visit to Pennsylvania where our nuclear family got together and renewed our family ties. While there, I had a chance to make some observations about the area and about life in general. First, we managed to get along just fine without guns and not a thought was given to that idea. Oh, except for when there were a lot of loud gun shot noises coming from close by while we were outside playing with the kids in the beautiful sunny weather. When I say noises, I mean noises. It was loud. I asked my daughter about it and she said there were deer hunters in some woods not too far from their home. Now, there are a lot of wooded areas in this part of Pennsylvania where the roads are narrow and winding and follow the hilly landscape. She actually looked into this with local law enforcement who informed her that there were people authorized to hunt in the area. Once the neighborhood realized this was going on, they have been watchful with the older kids who sometimes play in the woods near their neighborhood. As we all know, bullets travel long distances and it wouldn't take much for a stray bullet to find a person rather than a deer.

While outside, we noticed a very large hawk circling around above my daughter's house, most likely a Broad Winged Hawk. There are two areas of the country where hawks migrate in large numbers in the fall. One is in Kempton, Pennsylvania and one is in Duluth, Minnesota, where I live. I love go to Hawk's Ridge to watch this annual migration of hawks and other Raptors and Peregrines. Several friends volunteer there doing bird counts and leading tours. This fall, I went with a group led by a guide who showed us a Sharp Shinned Hawk up close and personal. At this spot, hawks are trapped and banded so they can track where the hawks go. People can actually adopt a hawk and follow it's progress if it is ever found somewhere and the band is tracked.

So what does this have to do with anything on this blog? I have noticed that some people watch me like a hawk, just waiting to pounce on every word I say. These people look at my blog several times a day, and sometimes in the wee hours of the morning, trolling through blogs and articles just in case a gun violence prevention writer dares to say something with which they disagree. O.K. so I guess some people get a kick out of this. But what in God's name are these people so nervous about? I rarely look at the blogs of the gun rights extremists. Occasionally, my curiosity is peaked, however. One such writer called me "Minnesota's biggest gun grabber". Really? Wow. That makes me one powerful woman. I guess I should be honored but somehow that is not how I feel about this statement. Rather, I am more interested in why someone would say something like that. What is this all about? Are the gun rights extremists so paranoid and fearful of their guns being taken from them that they are willing to make anything up to get people's "undies all in a bundle".

If you look at the definition of the idiom for watching like a hawk, you will see that it is often for the purpose of waiting for someone to do something wrong. Ah, now I see. If I do something deemed to be wrong by the gun rights extremists, they can belittle me and attack me for my views. For what reason? Well, let's see- it keeps people coming to their own blogs. Or it is an attempt to make me and others who share my view look stupid, ill informed, evil, or whatever else can be drummed up. It keeps people buying guns to stock pile them in case someone like me actually comes around to their homes to ask for their guns. It keeps the far right agenda of fear hyped up so people will go to the polls to vote for those who have made promises to the NRA during the election in exchange for monetary and other support. Out of fear of actually discussing reasonable gun policy some politicians spout the usual junk: " I support the second amendment and the right to bear arms." Yes, so now what? Does this mean that because there is support for the second amendment, absolutely no reasonable gun laws can be supported? Does this mean that it's O.K. for 30,000 people a year to die from gun injuries and another 70,000 or so to be injured from bullets? Does this mean it's O.K. for mentally ill people to have guns? Does this make it O.K. for domestic abusers to be able to get their guns in spite of OFP? Does this mean it's O.K. to kill law enforcement officers? What does this statement really mean? I suggest that you ask your elected leaders as they run for their seats. Watch for their reaction.

If anyone is watching me like a hawk, they will know that I am not interested in taking their guns away- unless of course they are seriously mentally ill, a drug or alcohol abuser, a felon, a domestic abuser or a terrorist- or a kid. But never mind any of that. The NRA and the gun rights extremists who watch my blog incessantly would actually have just about anyone carrying a gun around in public places. So they think I am unreasonable when I support sensible gun laws? Crazy. Here's unreasonable. It's easy for non Florida residents to get their carry permit and use it in other states, even if, as in the case of Marqus Hill, their license was revoked in their home state for very good cause. We made it easy for Hill to get a permit to carry when he shouldn't have and now another young man is dead. It should be harder rather than easier. Nonetheless, the NRA and it's U.S. House members want to impose this stellar system on the rest of us. Florida's own Rep. Cliff Stearns led the charge on H.R. 822 and he won. He won because, as I said above, if the NRA says so, it will happen.

Last night I watched the film, Casino Jack, about now famous convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff. ( I highly recommend this film, by the way.) Featured in the film in several telling scenes was Grover Norquist, the man to whom the conservative elected leaders have given a life long pledge to never raise taxes. I remind my readers that Grover Norquist is not a nice man. He is on the NRA Board of Directors. You can read about his nefarious activities here. This is American Democracy at its' worst. Common sense tells us that people like Norquist should not be making the rules. People like NRA Exexutive V.P. Wayne LaPierre ( the guys with the guns make the rules) should not be making the rules. The NRA should not be making the rules regarding gun policy in our country.

I didn't notice that the gun rights extremists were watching as people continued to shoot each other on the Thanksgiving holiday this year. Here are a few their eagle eyes may have missed:
a domestic shooting in Florida
I could go on, but you get the picture. This is what I am watching like a hawk- senseless shootings that happen every day, some of which could be prevented by passing laws that make it harder for prohibited people to get their guns. Notice also that most, if not all of the incidents linked above were shootings of and by people who knew each other. So what, again, are the gun guys afraid of? Random shootings happen but they are rare. And, unless I missed something, I didn't notice anyone commenting on how their Thanksgiving day went without their guns or whether or not they actually needed their gun over the Thanksgiving holiday and why or where?

At Church this morning, we celebrated the first Sunday of Advent. We are waiting and watching for the birth of child whose day we celebrate on December 25th. We are waiting and watching for the darkness to come and go and lighting candles and holiday lights to light up the darkness as we wait. As with Thanksgiving, families get together over Christmas or Hanukkah or other celebrations and hope for peace rather than violence. I know that shootings will continue unabated. I know that common sense is possible concerning gun policy. I'm watching and waiting for that to happen. I'm watching as readers from Lancaster, PA; Washington D.C.; Buffalo, N.Y; Odenton, Maryland; Inver Grove Heights, Mn; Clinton, N.C; Sheboygan, WI; Tel Aviv, Israel; Mumbai, India; Uppsala, Sweden; West Chester, Ohio; Hollywood, CA; Milan, Italy; Ephrata, PA; Falkirk, U.K; Hong Kong; Oklahoma, OK; Melbourne, Australia; Yankton, S.D; Creswell, Oregon; Kalispell, Montana; Denton, TX; Wheaton, IL; Des Moines, IA; Salt Lake City, UT; Meridian, MS; Englewood, FL; Greensboro, N.C.; Spokane, WA; Las Vegas, NV; Cookeville, TN; Rochester, MI; and all of the other places you call home check out my blog. Keep on watching. I will keep writing.


  1. I don't have the time to watch anyone like a hawk, but I sometimes "watch" you because:

    Reading only what is written by those with whom one agrees can get boring.


    If one holds political opinions, one should read opposing opinions to see if one can defend one's opinions against opposing views. If not, it may be time to re-think.

  2. "I support the second amendment and the right to bear arms"

    "What does this statement really mean?"

    You hit the nail on the head here. It does not mean no gun control laws. But it also does not mean that every proposed gun control law is okay, either. The Supreme Court only started a process that will take a long time to finish, if ever.

    Suppose a gun control law says: Someone may own only one gun, no bigger than 22 caliber that holds only one shot -- after obtaining a $500 permit with a 6-month wait. Does that violate the Second Amendment? If so, just how close can you get to that extreme without infringing upon the right? Until we know, this fight will never end.

  3. I think you are right, Jay. But I wish we wouldn't look at it as a fight. It truly is a discussion that should be civil and we should have but it feels like there is a "take no prisoners" view from the gun rights side that resists every all attempts at reasonable gun laws because of the fear of the slippery slope. Truly, I ( we) are not interested in that. Our cause has to do with preventing people from being shot to death.

  4. As I have commented at other times, there has been too much evidence that some sort of slippery slope is real, and not enough evidence of sincere willingness to discuss compromise by gun control advocates.

    Have you ever wished that gun control could be more like other issues? If that's true then you might be getting your wish -- except that it's other issues that are becoming a "take no prisoners" fight like gun control.

  5. Show me the evidence of a "slippery slope".

  6. As gun control advocates often point out, many other countries have the kind of strict gun control laws that they propose here. Yet when a particularly bad and newsworthy shooting occurs, more often than not those countries respond by passing even more restrictive gun control that goes beyond what gun control advocates claim they want for the US.

    A good example is the UK, which had the gunowner licensing and gun registration that US gun control advocates dream of. Yet when multiple shootings continued to occur (as they often do) the UK banned and confiscated all handguns and all pump and semiauto hunting rifles, and prohibited gun ownership for self-defense.

  7. Why has every bill that has been backed by the Brady Bunch that purports to close the "gun show loophole" included provisions that would allow future administrations to close gun shows altogether?

    And why has every bill that has been proposed that would close the loophole, without granting the government broad regulatory power over private gun sales, been opposed by the Brady Bunch?

  8. The UK confiscated handguns? Did they actually prohibit guns for self defense? Perhaps these countries understand that having a lot of guns in the hands of millions of people is leading to more gun deaths and mass shootings which is what the culture in the U.S. is currently allowing.

  9. From Wikipedia- U.K. gun policy- " To obtain a firearm certificate, the police must be convinced that a person has "good reason" to own each firearm, and that they can be trusted with it "without danger to the public safety or to the peace". Under Home Office guidelines, firearms licences are only issued if a person has legitimate sporting or work-related reasons for ownership. Since 1946, self-defence has not been considered a valid reason to own a firearm. The current licensing procedure involves: positive verification of identity, two referees of verifiable good character who have known the applicant for at least two years (and who may themselves be interviewed and/or investigated as part of the certification), approval of the application by the applicant's own family doctor, an inspection of the premises and cabinet where firearms will be kept and a face-to-face interview by a Firearms Enquiry Officer (FEO) also known as a Firearms Liaison Officer (FLO). A thorough background check of the applicant is then made by Special Branch on behalf of the firearms licensing department. Only when all these stages have been satisfactorily completed will a license be issued, which has to be renewed every 5 years.
    Any person who has been sentenced to three years or more in prison is automatically banned for life from obtaining a firearms licence.[10] Similarly, persons applying for licences with recent, serious mental health issues will also be refused a certificate.
    Any person holding a Firearm or Shotgun Certificate must comply with strict conditions regarding such things as safe storage. These storage arrangements are checked by the police before a licence is first granted, and on every renewal of the licence. A local police force may impose additional conditions on ownership, over and above those set out by law. Failure to comply with any of these conditions can mean forfeiture of the licence and surrender of any firearms to the police, though due to the complicated laws, different forces in the UK interpret the regulations in different ways, and many conditions have been overthrown following legal proceedings against issuing Police forces."

    It looks like self defense had not been a reason for owning guns in the U.K. since 1946 so there is no slippery slope here. Mass shootings did not lead to this policy. The policy has been in place for a long time. I don't see anything about gun confiscation here. Only some times of guns are banned which is quite different from actual confiscation. The thing that really stands out is this: " Gun politics in the United Kingdom generally places its main considerations on how best to ensure public safety and how deaths involving firearms can most effectively be prevented. The United Kingdom has one of the lowest rates of gun homicides in the world, and did so even before strict gun control legislation came into force. In England and Wales (the most populous part of the United Kingdom) the rate is below the EU average, about four times lower than that of the United States, but on almost the same level as in Canada.[1] With the exception of those in Northern Ireland, UK police officers do not routinely carry firearms.[2]"

  10. The U.K. confiscated handguns? Did they actually prohibit guns for self defense?

    Yes, and practically yes.

    We watch you because we know what we have to lose. You say that this should be a civil discussion, but you've been dismissive to me and to others whenever we disagree with you, and you've shown no willingness to budge on any of your positions. That being the case, we won't either. We'll watch what you're proposing and fight it at every step.

  11. gregory- I rest my case about you guys not being interested in any discussion or compromise. Your words speak volumes. Find me proof that guns were confiscated in the U.K.

  12. jdege- what the heck are you talking about? It's the Brady Campaign, by the way.

  13. Not hard to find. Notice they state the laws changed after a massacre.



  14. What do you think happened to all the once legally owned hand guns in the UK?

  15. "view from the gun rights side that resists every all attempts at reasonable gun laws because of the fear of the slippery slope. Truly, I ( we) are not interested in that."

    But then you don't distance yourselves from those that are interested in that. Carolyn McCarthy and Dianne Feinstein, for example. That sends mixed messages to the gun owners out there.

  16. I guess your definition of confiscation is different than mine. From the article you linked:" More than 160,000 handguns have been surrendered by their owners since new laws were introduced following the Dunblane massacre, the UK Government has revealed."

  17. Confiscate- " To seize (private property) for the public treasury.
    2. To seize by or as if by authority. See Synonyms at appropriate.
    adj. (knf-skt, kn-fskt)
    1. Seized by a government; appropriated.
    2. Having lost property through confiscation."

    Gun owners in UK were compensated for their guns turned in though it took longer than they expected.

  18. What do you think happened to the guns that were turned in, Anthony?

  19. And what do Senator Feinstein and Rep. McCarthy have to say about this? They are both in favor of reasonable gun laws that would require background checks on all gun sales and ban high capacity magazines. Feinstein has long been in favor of the Assault Weapons Ban which I am also in favor of in some form. So does that mean we are going to come for your guns? Only in your world do these things mean gun confiscations.

  20. "It looks like self defense had not been a reason for owning guns in the U.K. since 1946 so there is no slippery slope here."

    That the government of the UK was able to remove self-defense as a legitimate reason to own guns, by administrative fiat, without legislative authorization, is an explicit example of the slippery slope in action.

    No Member of Parliament ever voted on a bill that removed self-defense as a legitimate reason for possessing firearms. It was removed by an administrative determination by the Home Secretary.

    And that's exactly why we will never accept a "common sense" gun control provision that gives that sort of power to the bureaucrats, here.

    Yet every bill to close the loophole that the Brady Bunch has ever supported has provided for exactly that sort of administrative over-reach.

    You want to know why we won't compromise? Because you have always made demands over which there can be no compromise.

    You could have had a bill that would have "closed the loophole", long ago. All you'd need have done was to offer up a clean bill that didn't enable administrative over-reach. And you've never done it. When such a bill was on the floor, you've lobbied against it.

  21. And those poor UK citizens are suffering terribly aren't they? They aren't shooting each other in great numbers, that's for sure. So there is far less suffering for families of the very few who are killed or injured by firearms. What a way to live. It must be just miserable.

  22. japete said...
    What do you think happened to the guns that were turned in, Anthony?

    I think you misunderstood the question. Why were they all surrendered? It was because if you were caught with one after the ban you would be thrown in jail. Here is an interesting article about starter pistols and a 5 year sentence if you are caught with one. I would imagine if you are caught with a real gun the jail time would be much greater. No wonder why people "surrendered" their guns.


    To answer your question I would bet they were all destroyed.

  23. Feinstein's "reasonable" thoughts on gun control:

    "Banning guns addresses a fundamental right of all Americans to feel safe."
    ~Senator Dianne Feinstein, 1993

    "If I could have gotten 51 votes in the Senate of the United States for an out-right ban, picking up every one of them... 'Mr. and Mrs. America, turn 'em all in,' I would have done it. I could not do that. The votes weren't here."
    ~Senator Dianne Feinstein onCBS-TV's "60 Minutes", February 5, 1995

    So again, why do you not distance yourselves from politicians wishing for a total ban on guns?

  24. The last time I checked, Diane Feinstein represents only one vote in the U.S. Senate and it is now 2011.

  25. "And those poor UK citizens are suffering terribly aren't they?"

    Yes, they are. The levels of violent crime they are dealing with dwarf ours.


  26. Right - you guys are always wanting to compare apples to oranges. Violent crime is up in the U.K. but then this;" The UK had a greater number of murders in 2007 than any other EU country – 927 – and at a relative rate higher than most western European neighbours, including France, Germany, Italy and Spain." 927 homicides? Do you know how many homicides we have in the U.S.? About 12,000 and almost 9000 of those are committed with a firearm. I;m blogging about gun violence and, as you know, I care about violence in general, that is not the topic of the blog. Perhaps you want to write your own blog about violence in general. But you can't avoid the fact that firearms account for most of it in America.

  27. "I didn't notice that the gun rights extremists were watching as people continued to shoot each other on the Thanksgiving holiday this year."

    Funny, I did: http://daysofourtrailers.blogspot.com/2011/11/thanksgiving-in-chi-town.html
    Please note that both featured stories are from Chicago, where open and concealed carry are illegal, normal capacity magazines are illegal, having a loaded gun in a car is illegal, ... the list goes on. I'm sure one more common sense law would have prevented these. (BTW, the Brady site scores IL as a 35, earning 2 points for "record keeping and retention," and later on 0 points for "record retention." Could you ask them to clarify/update, please?)

    "The UK confiscated handguns? Did they actually prohibit guns for self defense?"

    As Gregory said, yes, and practically yes. I'd add that the UK arrests for self-defensive actions in general (small sample):
    Man arrested after defending his step-son from five assailants could face attempted murder charges: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1202182/Company-director-arrested-attempted-murder-rescuing-son-beaten-yobs.html
    Life in prison for self-defense: http://www.allsafedefense.com/Articles/Martin-England.htm
    Homeowner facing murder charges for stabbing masked burglars: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2007232/John-Leonard-Bennell-Burglar-stabbed-death-bail.html

    Particularly telling in that third one is the director of the "civil rights group," who's stance is that "saying that 'burglars leave their rights at the threshold' is a recipe for vigilante execution...." What about the homeowners' civil rights to be secure in their own home and property, or against false arrest? What happens the next night, when the husband is sitting in jail, the wife and children are home alone, and the burglars decide to return? And since when is acting in defense of yourself and family on your own property considered a "vigilante execution?"

    I did also notice that "motor vehicle" is not on the FBI's Uniform Crime Report as a possible murder weapon, yet we have many "vehicular homicides." I agree, more homicide is tragic, but I'd wager that if vehicular homicides were counted as murders, the 8,775 firearm-related homicides would suddenly be a minority. Just my two cents.

    May Peace favor you.

  28. Archer- I am not now going to get into an argument about UK law. It is what it is and they will have to sort it out. We have enough trouble trying to sort out our own laws. Gun deaths in the U.K. are very low compared to the U.S. Could that be because few people have guns? Even the intruders in those cases did not have guns. The link you provided about the Thanksgiving incident in the Chicago area actually proves my point more than yours. Of course carrying assault rifles around is illegal. That's my point, not yours. Let's make them harder to get so these things don't happen.

    As to your last statement- Really? Come on.

  29. O.K. Jay and others- I'm done posting comments about gun laws in the UK. That was not the topic of this blog. It will serve no purpose to further that discussion since we can't do a darned thing about gun laws in other countries.

  30. Greg is, of course, wrong. As usual.

    Britain has never had a right to armed self-defence.

    In British law, Self-defence is an affirmative defence, not an excuse for violence.

    A person is entitled to use reasonable force to protect himself. Opinions differ on what constitutes a reasonable amount of force, but in all cases, the defendant does not have the right to determine what constitutes "reasonable force" because the defendant would always maintain they acted reasonably and thus would never be guilty.

    The right to self-defense is limited to situations where the immediate threat of violence cannot be prevented by those authorized to do so (in practice, because no police force is present at the moment of the threat). The right to self-defense granted by law to the private citizen is strictly limited. Use of force that goes beyond what is necessary to dispel the immediate threat of violence is known as excessive self-defense (also self-defense with excessive force, excessive self-defense).

    Since a firearm is a deadly weapon, its use would be excessive under most circumstances.

    I can also assert that there have never been gun confiscations, but British law enforcement occassionally announces amnesties where firearms are turned in to the police.

    Greg should back up his claims with facts, but he can't.

  31. japete - In only one of those three UK cases was a firearm used by either party. One person used a letter opener -- even their highly restrictive knife laws would not have affected it. The key concept is "disparity of force;" five guys gang-beating one man will end badly for the one man, even without weapons.

    But as you said, that's not the point of this discussion.

    "The link you provided about the Thanksgiving incident in the Chicago area actually proves my point more than yours."

    I'll try to explain better. Making these activities illegal does not, has not, and will not stop them from happening. It only means that only criminals will do them, uncontested by honest people. No offense, but do you honestly believe that because it's illegal, nobody carries a concealed handgun in Chicago? My point was that despite all these activities already being illegal on many levels, people still did them. How will making them "more illegal" make a difference?

    I'd also point out that carrying long guns is legal in most of the country, including all of California, that "model of sensible gun laws." And in California, peaceable citizens openly carrying firearms -- even at Open Carry and TEA Party rallies -- have a zero incidence rate for violent crime. The "peaceful" Occupy movement can't rightfully claim a zero violent crime rate, yet the OC-ers and TEA Partiers are labeled "violent extremists."

    Except for this short paragraph, I'll ignore your repeated misuse of the term "assault rifle." It's been addressed in the comments here many times. I believe "ad nauseum" is the descriptor you like to use.

    May Peace favor you.

  32. Is it so hard to believe that cars are dangerous? In 2010, there were over 19,500 fatal car crashes involving a single vehicle (http://car-accident.laws.com/car-accidents-2010). That's not even counting multiple-vehicle crashes. Most of those are drivers hitting pedestrians, and I think we can agree that when a car meets a pedestrian, the car wins.

    I'm a firm believer that with the exception of unforeseen mechanical failures, there are no "car accidents;" ergo, the vast majority of these are caused by negligence or poor driving practices. (For the record, I hold "gun accidents" to the same standard; the vast majority are either negligence or poor handling.) That would bump the "homicide" rate to over 30,000, with less than 9,000 caused by firearms. That's a numerical minority by any measure.

    As I said above, any of these deaths are tragic, but let's try to focus on the people responsible, not the inanimate objects involved.

    May Peace favor you.

  33. Archer- I understand perfectly well that illegal people are carrying guns around pretty much everywhere. That is why I am blogging. I want to have ways to prevent them from doing so. Reasonable gun laws regarding background checks would be a start in that direction but would not obviously solve the whole problem. But to do nothing should not be the option.

  34. Archer- all I can say is "sigh" Can't you come up with something better than this. This argument is ridiculous and yet you guys keep saying it. It doesn't hold water and it doesn't resonate with anyone but a few of you who hold onto it as an excuse for the number of homicides caused by gun injuries.

  35. "I understand perfectly well that illegal people are carrying guns around pretty much everywhere. [...] I want to have ways to prevent them from doing so."

    We have ways: arrest them, try them in a court of law by an impartial jury, then lock up the convicts. If/when they get out, watch them like a hawk. At any sign of recidivism, lock them up again, but while they're out, give them something to do. Recidivism rates drop sharply if they can earn an honest living.

    Other than the judicial system and its various failings, there is nothing you, I, or anyone else can do to "prevent" them from breaking the law. We already have laws in place, but a person bent on doing something illegal is not going to balk at another law. Enacting more laws will not change this simple fact.

    What more laws will do (have done), however, is place an increasingly heavy and unnecessary burden on the rest of us. The difference between a "right" and a "privilege" notwithstanding, we honest people will have to jump through more hoops and pay more fees and taxes to do what we do, while criminals will continue to do what they do uninhibited. Are you familiar with the expression, "Locks are for honest people"? It refers to the fact that a person who truly wants in will find a way, regardless of whether the door is locked or not. Laws function the same way.

    I agree that doing nothing is not an option, but where we differ is in what we believe should be done. Gun bans aren't the answer. We tried that from 1994-2004, and the FBI concluded that it had no discernible effect on reducing violent crime, and its expiration likewise did not cause a sudden uptick in crime rates. Urban areas with "strong gun laws" remain some of the most violent places on the planet. We need to try something else. Make the convicts serve their full sentences, and don't make it a pleasant experience; if prison is supposed to be a deterrent, make it one. Encourage police departments to work hand-in-hand with responsible members of the community to catch and prosecute the bad guys; engage the public instead of trying to work apart from or against it. That'd be a "good first step." (I have more, but you wouldn't like some of them.)

    Bottom line, hold people accountable for their actions and remember that we are innocent until proven guilty, and the rest will fall into place.

    May Peace favor you.

  36. Yes, Archer. We see this problem from two very different views. Yours is punitive and waiting for someone to be shot and then arrest. Mine is to prevent or stop the shooting before it happens so there are fewer people like me out there grieving for a lost loved one. So yes, there are things that can be done to prevent some of this- starting with background checks on all gun sales. If you can explain to me how that would affect you or be a terrible inconvenience compared to the inconvenience of losing a sister or a daughter, etc. please let me know. Remember, I did not say this would stop all shootings. But doing nothing is not an option.