Human nature was displayed this past week, since the catalyst event of the mass shooting in Tucson. Initiated by the heinous act of a crazed individual, we’ve seen both the good - and the bad - in humanity since. Following are a few quick links and thoughts:
Palin breaks silence on Tucson
So reads the title to a post in the New Mexico Independent. Following the herd of liberals who immediately began blaming the Right for the shooting, the title of this post leads us to believe that Sarah Palin had some obligation to respond to, due to her implicit responsibility for, the attempted assassination of Rep. Giffords.
The New MSM Mantra: Publish first, check later
Initial reports, from “trusted” news organizations, indicated that Rep. Giffords had, in fact, been killed. From a Reuters report (via Malkin),
Representative Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona died after being shot in the head while meeting constituents at a grocery store in Tucson, NPR reported on Saturday.
As we saw, beginning at least back at 9/11, and continuing through major events such as Hurricane Katrina, the instantaneous response time of 21st century technology does not negate the need for real time (and, sometimes slow time) fact checking.
“It was crazy. A photographer with a [telephoto] lens was outside and he yells ‘Shooter! Shooter! Get down! And I didn’t,”
You may have heard about Rep. Giffords intern Daniel Hernandez, indeed, the President referenced him, and his heroic acts, in his memorial speech. Or perhaps you heard about the 74 year-old veteran, Bill Badger, who helped tackle the shooting suspect. But how many of you heard about Joe Zamudio, who happened to be buying cigarettes as the shooter commenced his mayhem? Zamudio heard the gunshots (and he recognized them as gunshots - something most people have a difficult time doing), and instead of running away from the sound, he ran towards it. Why? Zamudio was armed, legally, with his own handgun, and was ready to use it on the shooter.
Boxer’s lack of common sense
Senator Barbara Boxer (D - Calif) thinks that part of the cause for the mass shooting in Tucson, other than a deranged individual deciding to shoot other human beings, is that laws on concealed carry are too lax. From Boxer,
I am particularly interested in California’s concealed weapons law, which requires someone who wants to carry a concealed weapon to first receive a permit from their local sheriff or police chief.
In California, you need to be at least 21 years old, show good cause for carrying and show good moral character to carry a concealed weapon. There is a check – an important check – on who is carrying a concealed weapon.
Perhaps someone should educate M’am Boxer that: 1) the Tucson mass shooting had nothing to do with concealed carry and, 2) concealed carry laws, whether strict or lenient, have no bearing on whether a criminal chooses to conceal his weapon.
If Loughner had gone to the Safeway carrying a regular pistol, the kind most Americans think of when they think of the right to bear arms, Giffords would probably still have been shot and we would still be having that conversation about whether it was a sane idea to put her Congressional district in the cross hairs of a rifle on the Internet.
Loughner’s gun, a 9-millimeter Glock, is extremely easy to fire over and over, and it can carry a 30-bullet clip. It is “not suited for hunting or personal protection,” said Paul Helmke, the president of the Brady Campaign. “What it’s good for is killing and injuring a lot of people quickly.”
Setting aside the silly notion of a “regular pistol” that is somehow connected to “the right to bear arms”, I would agree with Helmke - the 30 round magazine is not suited for hunting or personal protection. I would imagine that the extended length of the magazine, combined with the added weight of the cartridges, would affect the shooter’s accuracy and, when one is interested in personal protection, one is also interested in accuracy. Understand that while the 30 round magazine, for a handgun, is a cumbersome oddity, the use of standard capacity magazines (in the range of 10 - 19 rounds) would not appreciably alter the situation. If a shooter knows how to exchange magazines, a magazine replacement can be accomplished very quickly.
Conservatives like to argue that these are isolated incidents carried out by lunatics and therefore carry no big lessons (unless the perpetrator is Muslim, in which case it’s terrorism); liberals view them as opportunities to address various social ills. Obama is in the latter category and should act accordingly. “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste,” Rahm Emanuel famously said in 2008. The same goes for a shooting spree that gravely wounds a beloved congresswoman.