"people wouldn't be able to kill others so easily without guns"
And drunks wouldn't be able to kill others so easily without cars. Sorry, but it's just a meaningless assertion.
If you don't approve of gun ownership, then by all means don't own one.
In the wake of the tragic events at Newtown (and in the wake of every mass shooting in the past decade) I've read countless op-ed pieces written by advocates of gun ownership, all of which carry the same basic theme- the idea that if only somebody had treated the shooter for mental illness, or prevented him from obtaining arms through "background checks, or been armed at the scene prior to the attack, etc. etc.- lives could've been saved. These points are all valid to some degree. But every excuse given to deflect criticism of our nation's culture of gun ownership sounds like just that: an excuse. The fact remains that if Adam Lanza or others like him hadn't been able to acquire deadly weapons and ammunition with such minimal effort, far fewer lives would've been lost.
Gun rights advocates are always quick to claim that our high rate of gun ownership has nothing to do with these mass killings, nothing to do with a homicide rate far above any other country with a comparative level of development. But where do they think that the guns used in these murders originated, exactly? Russia? Mexico? Secretive, illicit gun factories funded by criminals and the like? Nearly every gun used to kill an American on a street corner in the ghetto or in a school or shopping mall was at some point in time legally purchased. In fact, most of the guns used to carry out acts of unspeakable violence even in Mexico were bought at American gun stores and then smuggled south to serve in the drug war. Whether these weapons were stolen from their legitimate owner or bought and intentionally funneled to criminals, they were available thanks to this nation's tolerance of deadly firearms. All other factors aside, Adam Lanza would not have been able to steal so many precious children away from their loved ones if he didn't have a family member who legally purchased an AR-15 rifle from her local gun store.
The sentiment "guns don't kill people, people kill people" may (technically) be true. But people wouldn't be able to kill others so easily without guns. It's time to stop making excuses and restrict the sale of firearms- to everybody.
Regarding the Webster shootings, why is it that sex offenders must register with the state even and yet murderers like Spengler do not? He murdered his grandmother, served his time, completed his parole and was free to go anywhere he wanted to without answering to any authority. One use of a murderer's registry would be to check it when any 911 call is made. If a released murderer is in the area, the responding service, such as firefighters, could be met there by police, just in case.
Klofas says: 'Although the concept of "legitimate rape" did make its way into the recent political campaign, that ended well enough, with electoral defeats of its defenders.'
Either that statement is an outright despicable lie, or it betrays a staggering ignorance of what happened.
So the Webster shooter murdered his grandmother by smashing in her skull with a hammer, and he get out of prison after a few years? With no parole supervision? And now we're "shocked, shocked" he killed again?
At some point NYS is going to bring back the death penalty and increase the use of life without parole, or we're going to continue seeing homicidal maniacs commit carnage, whether because they are drug dealers or just plain violently mentally ill. New York's liberal sentencing laws and a broken parole system gave us the tragedy in Webster, plain and simple.
Mr. Klofas, like many who have engaged in this debate, have done the classic "pivot". This is where somebody responds to a question by turning it to the topic they really wanted to talk about. Candidates do it constantly in the debates.
Trying to solve the crime problem in America by addressing guns, is like trying to cure the flu with some aspirin - you're addressing the symptom, not the cause.
The real issue is mental health diagnosis and treatment. Whether it's Newtown, Webster, Columbine or any number of other tragedies, the people who perpetrated the violence gave friends and relatives previous indicators of a lack of positive mental health.
The answer to these tragedies is not to attack people's liberties and freedoms. The TSA, body scans and shoe removal isn't the way to prevent hijackings. Prohibition was no way to treat America's love of alcohol, nor is it any way to address the drug "problem" in America. The Alien and Sedition Acts were not the way to deal with political dissent, Gun "control" is not the way to deal with crime or mass violence.
Gun violence in America can be addressed most effectively by ending the prohibition on drugs and dealing more effectively with mental health. There are quite literally MILLIONS of guns in America, of which only a tiny tiny fraction of a percentage get used in any kind of illegal manner.
Some people illegally copy and burn DVDs. We're not about to outlaw DVD burners or movie rentals.
Again... the real issue here is mental health assessment and treatment. First and foremost we need to ramp up the destigmatization of getting help. Second, mental health care needs to be as easy to access as regular health care. It needs to be part of every single health insurance policy, and people need to be encouraged to get screened on a regular basis for various problems. People with serious issues need to be addressed, and need to be monitored. We need to find a happy medium between forced hospitalization and the really laissez faire attitude of the post-80s environment. I'm a huge libertarian, but there are some things the government needs to do. Gun control ain't one of them.
The thing is, looking to more gun control laws is the easy way out. It takes little effort on the part of legislators (and presidents and governors), and costs far less than does mental health. Because mental health counseling and treatment is expensive, complicated and difficult, it's just not going to be a genuine part of the discussion. Until it is, more people will be killed by mentally ill people who daily give out signals that they need help, regardless of what laws manage to get passed.
Which is a damn shame.
I wonder if Chaim DeLoye might have heard about another great stand to prevent the electronic toys and the kiddies from ruining a market: After all there will always be room at the top for top flight camera film, no matter what.
That worked so well with Kodak. Let's try to avoid letting similar things happen to public libraries. Like or dislike new media - that's your choice, and I wouldn't try to deny you the freedom to make that choice. By pigeonholing ebooks and readers as "electronic toys," I believe that you've set yourself up for failure by refusing to even look at the issues involved - in favor of trying to turn back the tide to maintain demand for "REAL" books.
When a large fraction of book sales are being made of mass market or trade paperback volumes, printed on shoddy paper, with poor ink, and worse glues - just what intrinsic benefit is there to that format over an electronic file in a format that may become obsolete, but has the chance to avoid physical degradation through backing up the file?
E-books are wonderful and libraries should provide them to lend. The lending terms should be as close as practical to the printed material they are replacing.
Baloney ! Refusal by publishers to offer certain books to libraries in e-book format is no more an abridgment of one's right/freedom to read than is the fact publishers regularly discontinue producing certain books thereby ceasing to offer them to libraries.
Let those in the public that want to use e-books do so on their own dime. And let libraries stick to providing access to books made of paper and ink. Perhaps in that way a sufficient demand for REAL books can be maintained so as to persuade publishers to stick with the printed word and leave the electronic toys to the kiddies.
It's very disturbing that this kind of ignorant cant would be promulgated by a public official who has been entrusted with the education of children. It certainly is not a very productive way to encourage broader support for the city's government-monopoly school system.
The authoress is correct in saying that we are reaping what we have sown. We have become inured to the epidemic of promiscuity, bastardy, and broken homes, while fostering a culture of helplessness and dependency — with inevitable results.
No doubt the parents for whom JFK was a "big deal" would be rather disappointed in the son who disregards Kennedy's ringing admonition to ask not what you country can do for you. In Mr. Hare's perverse daydreams, the politicians would outbid each other offering voters shiny baubles from Uncle Sugar's treasure chest (oh, excuse me, I mean "programs to better their own lives"). So much for putting the nation's best interests ahead of narrow self-interest.
Seriously. That's how decadent, and how far removed from JFK's idealism, liberalism has become. And to think liberals blame everybody ELSE for the state of our politics! Pathetic.
Loving the new website. Much better then the most recent previous site.
The temporary site was far easier to read and navigate. This one is WAY too cluttered.
Congrats guys, the new site looks great!
Matt and Eric are kings among men. <3 <3 <3
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