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Thread: School shootings

  1. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I think we need to take incremental steps. There seems to be a consensus that mentally unstable people should not be able to own guns. I think we can work with that and get somewhere.
    What about bump-stocks? How could they possibly help in deer hunting? What about 50+ round clips? I rarely find deer hunters where I hike (they seem to prefer ATV trails and dirt roads where large 4x4 trucks can be driven), but if I ran into a deer hunter with a 50 round clip on an AR-15, I would seriously question if that guy needed to be deer hunting, to begin with.

    We have a legal precedent in Utah, where a guy was found guilty in federal court just a few months ago of manufacturing and distributing kits that turn AR-15s into fully automatic machine guns. Bump-stocks seem to a very close cousin.

    We need to try and find some common sense consensus that isn't too aggressive, then both sides need to ignore their extremes and have patience, understanding that with as many guns as we have, any incremental moves probably won't show up in the stats for a long time, and know up front there are so many strong opinions and anecdotal stories that will push us to extremes.

    Hearing that teenagers from Florida are planning a march in DC to demand Congress do something about this is encouraging. (Maybe the children will lead the way on this issue, as the adults are hopelessly paralyzed.)

    Reading that Trump was shook up by his visits to teenagers recovering in the hospital is also encouraging.
    Last edited by Ma'ake; 02-19-2018 at 09:08 AM.

  2. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    There seems to be a consensus that mentally unstable people should not be able to own guns. I think we can work with that and get somewhere.
    I've already seen this point on Facebook, from one of my HS classmates who is an educator, along with his spouse. He got immediate pushback from another classmate, who asked who will decide if somebody is unfit to own a gun? Under criteria developed by left-wing university professors?

    Sigh...

    Trying to get buy-in from gun owners is going to be really tricky.

    There is already a fair amount of (non-psychiatric) paranoia that the government is going to come to take their guns away.

    Anticipating a situation where one of their own has gone off the ranch mentally, maybe it would be good for local gun clubs to be involved in (gently) getting weapons removed from the home of a gun owner who has clearly deteriorated mentally. Let the local gun club be involved, let them help talk some sense into their fellow member, in addition to local law enforcement.

    ATF and the FBI need to not be involved, at all.

    Baby steps.

  3. #33
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ma'ake View Post
    I've already seen this point on Facebook, from one of my HS classmates who is an educator, along with his spouse. He got immediate pushback from another classmate, who asked who will decide if somebody is unfit to own a gun? Under criteria developed by left-wing university professors?

    Sigh...

    Trying to get buy-in from gun owners is going to be really tricky.

    There is already a fair amount of (non-psychiatric) paranoia that the government is going to come to take their guns away.

    Anticipating a situation where one of their own has gone off the ranch mentally, maybe it would be good for local gun clubs to be involved in (gently) getting weapons removed from the home of a gun owner who has clearly deteriorated mentally. Let the local gun club be involved, let them help talk some sense into their fellow member, in addition to local law enforcement.

    ATF and the FBI need to not be involved, at all.

    Baby steps.
    We should expect that type of reaction, but surely there is a way to develop a process that most people will have confidence in. For example, in most states already, if a person has been placed on a 72-hour psychiatric hold for being a danger to himself or others, that person does not get to own a firearm thereafter. In fact, if the individual makes threats while in that state, the police go to the individual’s home and remove any firearms there. That’s in California, which is a very liberal state. Probably too much for many other states, but still, everybody recognizes that mentally ill people should not have guns.


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    Last edited by LA Ute; 02-19-2018 at 09:34 AM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  4. #34
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Here is a bunch of ideas that I saw on a web site. Some may be a bit difficult to implement but they're worth considering. Why not?

    1. Metal Detectors In Every School: This maintains such common sense it's impossible to believe that it doesn’t already happen. This is a bigger failure in the era of post-Columbine than the popularity of the AR-15. How do the largest schools in our nation (Stoneman Douglas is one of the largest at over 3,000 students) not have access points controlled through a metal detector daily? Our courts, government buildings, airports, sports stadiums, conventions, and plenty of other public gatherings demand them.


    2. Enforce Everything: Oddly those calling for more laws to be added to the already overly tufted books of law regarding firearms may not realize just how many laws already exist. Simple enforcement of existing laws would cut down on uncounted numbers of people owning guns, possessing guns, and utilizing guns. This is particularly true in the area of those with mental health issues. Begin doing what laws already state must be done, and do so like our children’s lives depend on it.


    3. Perform Active Shooter Drills: In many school districts in the nation earthquake drills are performed. No children have died in earthquakes at an American school in years but the drills go forward. “Sequester and Hide” (and then get your cell phone out and begin "facebook-LIVE-ing”) should be replaced with “Barricade, Attack, & Survive.” Young people should be aware of how quickly they can move a teacher’s desk and their own to protect against a shooter. These should be practiced and drilled at minimum in comparison to earthquake drills.

    4. Reinforce Doors, Windows, Buses, Locks: Though these things left to themselves were installed and still did not stop the shooter at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, they are able to stop some of the carnage. At the Stoneman Douglas high school, the shooter attempted to shoot through the reinforced glass of the classrooms in an attempt to shoot victims outside the building, but was unable to because of the technology of the glass. That piece of hardened, thickened glass saved lives.


    5. Recruit Retired Military & Law Enforcement: The number of qualified public safety professionals that live in our communities is surprising. These friends and neighbors have already received certification and weapons training. Most of them (unless they become criminals) are already allowed to own, possess, and carry firearms. Having them operate the access points at all schools, check every backpack and bag carried onto the premises, and engage every threat be it a firearm, a pocketknife or any other form of contraband — would not only ensure a safer school campus, but also a more rule following, law abiding one. Drugs, porn, and other forms of disruptive materials would be filtered out of the school campus environment on the threat of being discovered every day by the school security professional.

    6. Arm All Appropriate Personnel: Giving teachers, coaches, and administrators (only the ones who wish to) the right to protect themselves on campus is a backstop to all other methods. But it is a genuine deterrent nonetheless. If only 5-10% of staff were also armed, certified, and properly trained, there would be no threat that first got through the detectors, security professionals, and the hallways that would still be allowed complete and utter access to the student body. Instead of a coach taking bullets, giving up his life to protect his students, numbers of teachers and coaches would be ready to confront any threat that made it to their area of the campus.


    7. Publicize Consequence: The mere knowledge of this list of obstacles to any attacker may not completely dissuade them. But since it was readily apparent that this list of steps would have actually saved some if not all of the lives in Florida this week, one thing can be easily understood. Any individual who decides to try something under these guidelines runs a much larger threat of being caught, captured, and killed if he tries it. So talk about it openly. Do the drills, teach the kids to fight for their own survival, tell the predators in advance that if they choose to attack a school it is open war on them, and before they ever have the chance to enter the facility the daunting challenge they will face will likely be a price too steep for them to be willing to pay.


    Israel has already put some of these steps into practice and the nation has seen almost zero school attacks since adopting them.


    None of these steps infringe upon law-abiding people’s Second Amendment rights.


    All of these steps attempt to stop and engage mentally ill or deliberately belligerent attackers.


    This list would make an immediate impact on every school that adopts them.


    No common sense American can deny their effectiveness.


    Our kids are worth it!

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  5. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    We should expect that type of reaction, but surely there is a way to develop a process that most people will have confidence in. For example, in most states already, if a person has been placed on a 72-hour psychiatric hold for being a danger to himself or others, that person does not get to own a firearm thereafter. In fact, if the individual makes threats well in that state, the police go to the individual’s home and remove any firearms there. That’s in California, which is a very liberal state. Probably too much for many other states, but still, everybody recognizes that mentally ill people should not have guns.
    Here's how "the talk" might go to an audience of gun enthusiasts: "How many here think it's a good idea for somebody like Charles Manson to have as many guns as he wanted to buy? OK, how about Steven Powell (before he blew up his house with the kids inside)? Now, what about your friend at the gun range with 8 kids, whose business is failing and he's talking about ending it all?"

    This is going to take a long, long time, multiple generations.

  6. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    Here is a bunch of ideas that I saw on a web site. Some may be a bit difficult to implement but they're worth considering. Why not?
    Getting "TSA-lite" security in schools would mean a TON of new jobs and metal detector / explosives detection equipment... but would also mean a fairly serious increase in taxes.

    But it also means we might be able to attract a wider pool of teacher candidates, which is already a serious problem, especially with stories like this: http://fox8.com/2018/02/19/teacher-k...hool-shooting/

    Arming teachers, custodians, librarians and staff inside the school would necessitate tactical training like Diehard has mentioned, and might result in a bump up in school-based suicides and murder-suicides (good people who run into acute personal crises and decide that's the way out).

    But this list is a start of a conversation that has been mostly avoided, to this point.

  7. #37
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ma'ake View Post
    Getting "TSA-lite" security in schools would mean a TON of new jobs and metal detector / explosives detection equipment... but would also mean a fairly serious increase in taxes.

    But it also means we might be able to attract a wider pool of teacher candidates, which is already a serious problem, especially with stories like this: http://fox8.com/2018/02/19/teacher-k...hool-shooting/

    Arming teachers, custodians, librarians and staff inside the school would necessitate tactical training like Diehard has mentioned, and might result in a bump up in school-based suicides and murder-suicides (good people who run into acute personal crises and decide that's the way out).

    But this list is a start of a conversation that has been mostly avoided, to this point.
    Your comment about TSA-lite reminded me of a school in our general vicinity in LA. It has a high fence around it and does have metal detectors, because of all the gang activity among the student population, many of whom are bused in. It is a very secure campus. Ironically, and very sadly, I’ve heard a number of kids who go there say they feel much safer on campus then they do at home. An interesting insight into our times.


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    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  8. #38
    Republicans are totally going to support a hundred billion dollars annually of increased school funding. Metal detectors, bulletproof glass, armed and trained teachers and staff, etc. We would be lucky to get away with ONLY a hundred billion a year for that level of upgrades. As it is now schools can barely afford to fix a leaking roof and replace textbooks, and still face across the board cuts at every level for being 'too expensive'.

    Every conversation needs to include who should be excluded (permanently or temporarily) from ownership at the federal level (e.g. domestic violence, stalking, animal cruelty, or familiar violence charges; making credible threats to others - current laws usually don't allow law enforcement to do much until after a shooting actually begins; people with mental health issues, etc). Certain other guns need to have severe restrictions (e.g. high capacity rapid rifles like AR-15, H&K 91) etc, for use at a licensed range only and only after extensive state and federal background checks by all law enforcement, not just local sheriff, and including psych evals. All funded by the purchaser.

  9. #39
    The problem is these mass shootings are not just at schools, but at any place where people are gathered en masse. Night clubs, concerts, workplaces, public gathering places... So amping up security at a school is no doubt important, but will not reduce the number of mass shootings we are experiencing.

    Also, and I bet Diehard can weigh in on this (and has) but arming teachers is a foolish idea. First can they do the right thing under that kind of pressure, and secondly, when LEOs get on scene, how do they identify who is the active shooter and who is defending? How do those being defended identify them too? Read the stories of the latest shooting from the surviving kids and naturally the police as they began clearing and securing the school trained their guns on the kids, had them put their hands in the air and had them drop their bags for inspection. Until the smoke clears, LEOs really don't know who is friend and who is foe.

    It seems ridiculous to me that we can't come to a consensus about what is really just a mild stepping back but would seem to make a big difference:

    1. No assault type rifles
    2. No high capacity clips
    3. No gun modifications that allow them to fire faster and easier than designed (like bump stocks)
    4. Mental health screenings at regular intervals
    5. Requiring gun owners to secure their own guns and assume liability insurance for their guns
    6. License gun owners in relation to 4-5 points

    That is barely stepping anything down.

    I get people are afraid of the government and what they do, so make citizen councils that enforce and review these sort of issues. Are we going to cover every mental illness? No, but certainly there are some illnesses that we can check for and state that they can't own guns anymore.

    I'm not much for my kids stepping out of class or protesting, but come April 20th if no laws have been changed (they won't be) and the students step out, I am going to tell my kids it is okay for them to do so.

  10. #40
    A few things.

    1) At least in Utah the idea of a “72 hour” mental health hold is a fantasy. Most people who are forcibly committed stay a few hours at most.

    2)Unless the person who is forcibly committed is at home when that occurs, weapons aren’t going to be seized. Even when they are seized they’re for safekeeping and once the person is released they often have to be returned

    3) The “enforce laws already on the books” idea is great. But it ignores all the reasons those laws aren’t enforced now. It’s rarely because officers don’t want to, but I rather because they can’t.

    4) The idea that people with guns are a deterrent In mass shootings is really somewhat incorrect. Most people who are willing to do this are just fine dying. The only reason it might be a deterrent is a lower casualty count.

    5)Metal detectors etc are great. Until the guy shows up with the AR and shoots up the access point.

    6) Hardening schools is a good idea....until someone pulls a fire alarm. But it’s a good way to try and help.

    Frankly we should spend more time teaching people to think in a calm manner. Teach them good combat medical skills and (they’re very easy and would save a lot of lives) stock classrooms with good medical supplies.

    And, stop and think about this for a minute. It’s harder to buy sudafed or iodine than it is ammunition and firearms accessories.


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  11. #41
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    School shootings

    Quote Originally Posted by Diehard Ute View Post
    A few things.

    1) At least in Utah the idea of a “72 hour” mental health hold is a fantasy. Most people who are forcibly committed stay a few hours at most.

    2)Unless the person who is forcibly committed is at home when that occurs, weapons aren’t going to be seized. Even when they are seized they’re for safekeeping and once the person is released they often have to be returned
    I don’t know about Utah but in CA and other states I’ve worked in 72 hours is the outer limit, until the individual is no longer a danger to self or others. So yes, the holds can be shorter. They shouldn’t be any longer than absolutely necessary. When a mental health pro says the danger is over then the hold ends. Holds can be extended to longer periods but the longer the hold becomes, the greater the due process that’s required. Here, if you make violent threats while on a hold the police can get a warrant and can take your guns. Good luck getting them back, or ever getting another one legally.

    3) The “enforce laws already on the books” idea is great. But it ignores all the reasons those laws aren’t enforced now. It’s rarely because officers don’t want to, but I rather because they can’t.
    A problem. I don’t blame LEOs for it.

    4) The idea that people with guns are a deterrent In mass shootings is really somewhat incorrect. Most people who are willing to do this are just fine dying. The only reason it might be a deterrent is a lower casualty count.
    Of all the ideas listed this one (arming more people on campus) leaves me most skeptical. It makes sense that without serious training, merely having more guns around won’t help much. I think the hope is that an armed person could stop or kill the gunman, not deter him. But how effective is the average citizen in a gunfight?

    5)Metal detectors etc are great. Until the guy shows up with the AR and shoots up the access point.

    6) Hardening schools is a good idea....until someone pulls a fire alarm. But it’s a good way to try and help.
    I guess the idea is to discourage the bad guys. But this type of equipment and the personnel to run it will be expensive.

    And, stop and think about this for a minute. It’s harder to buy sudafed or iodine than it is ammunition and firearms accessories.
    The only way to address this is to either repeal the Second Amendment or get a different SCOTUS interpretation of it. Just looking for small steps we can take now.
    Last edited by LA Ute; 02-19-2018 at 05:38 PM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  12. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I don’t know about Utah but in CA and other states I’ve worked in 72 hours is the outer limit, until the individual is no longer a danger to self or others. So yes, the holds can be shorter. They shouldn’t be any longer than absolutely necessary. When a mental health pro says the danger is over then the hold ends. Holds can be extended to longer periods but the longer the hold becomes, the greater the due process that’s required. Here, if you make violent threats while on a hold the police can get a warrant and can take your guns. Good luck getting them back, or ever getting another one legally.

    I think you can get such a warrant anywhere. I don’t think in my entire career anyone has done that. If you look at most of the recent shooters there’s little to no contact with our legal system. I honestly believe our medical system is more likely to encounter these guys, but who knows as most of that info is private (the Trolley Square shooter had no red flags)



    A problem. I don’t blame LEOs for it.

    It’s a problem that probably needs to be addressed in Congress. The laws on the books need to be standardized and streamlined


    Of all the ideas listed this one (arming more people on campus) leaves me most skeptical. It makes sense that without serious training, merely having more guns around won’t help much. I think the hope is that an armed person could stop or kill the gunman, not deter him. But how effective is the average citizen in a gunfight?

    And that’s the rub with this idea. We don’t really have any reason to believe it would change anything. A citizen with a gun has that gun as a last resort, to protect themselves or someone else. They’re not going to seek out the shooter. Nor should they. I guarantee there were armed citizens in Trolley Square.



    I guess the idea is to discourage the bad guys. But this type of equipment and the personnel to run it will be expensive.

    Very. Criminals do go for easier targets. But many also seem to be attracted to places that have some personal significance. (Las Vegas is an exception, one I doubt we ever understand)


    The only way to address this is to either repeal the Second Amendment or get a different SCOTUS interpretation of it. Just looking for small steps we can take now.
    I agree. It’s just unfortunate we’re so far down this road that even having a good conversation on this topic is often impossible.


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  13. #43
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diehard Ute View Post
    I agree. It’s just unfortunate we’re so far down this road that even having a good conversation on this topic is often impossible.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Amen, brother.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  14. #44
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    School shootings

    The DesNews Editorial Board:

    Could the nation do more to identify and treat mental illnesses? Could more be done to recognize warning signs and mandate mental health screening without violating a person’s civil rights? Could background checks required for firearms purchases be more effective at weeding out people with mental illnesses, keeping in mind that many such illnesses are not diagnosed before they manifest themselves in dangerous ways? Are there reasonable gun-control measures that could preserve Second Amendment rights while reducing the ability to cause mass casualties? Are schools employing the best safety measures to guard against mass casualties?

    Americans cannot continue to allow diseased minds to view mass murder as a viable alternative for appeasing their own sense of injustice. Parents should never again have to endure the horrors of not knowing whether their children are safe at school.
    https://www.deseretnews.com/article/...questions.html
    Last edited by LA Ute; 02-20-2018 at 12:04 AM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  15. #45
    So I mentioned last week that might daughter, a high school senior, hopes that gun laws will change when her generation, the Columbine generation gets to vote. I guess I did not realize until last week how deeply affected she is by all the mass shootings--especially school shootings--that she has grown up with.

    so this weekend she wrote something for Vox that was printed today.

    https://www.vox.com/first-person/201...teens-protests


    She was also quoted and pictured in a Trib article this morning

    https://www.sltrib.com/news/educatio...hool-shooting/


    She--and a lot of her firends--are extremely determined. I personally hope it gets somewhere.

  16. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by concerned View Post
    So I mentioned last week that might daughter, a high school senior, hopes that gun laws will change when her generation, the Columbine generation gets to vote. I guess I did not realize until last week how deeply affected she is by all the mass shootings--especially school shootings--that she has grown up with.

    so this weekend she wrote something for Vox that was printed today.

    https://www.vox.com/first-person/201...teens-protests


    She was also quoted and pictured in a Trib article this morning

    https://www.sltrib.com/news/educatio...hool-shooting/


    She--and a lot of her firends--are extremely determined. I personally hope it gets somewhere.
    I also hope it gets somewhere. Also, go West High!

  17. #47
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Better Background Gun Checks

    [I]One way to help keep guns from the ill and dangerous.[/I{

    By The Editorial Board
    Feb. 20, 2018 6:56 p.m. ET

    The Parkland, Fla. high school massacre has ignited another gun-control debate, and amid the usual polarization there may be room to compromise. To wit, the House could quickly move a version of a bill it passed last year to improve background checks.

    As we’ve learned since Nikolas Cruz killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the 19-year-old was a known threat. The Broward County Sheriff’s Office responded to at least 20 complaints about his behavior, and the FBI received a tip in January with specific information about his social-media posts and overt threats. The school had sent out an email about the expelled student, asking to be notified if he showed up with a backpack.

    This latest FBI failure needs a full investigation, but Parkland also highlights an inadequate system for identifying high-risk individuals and denying them firearms. Congress addressed this failing after a gunman last year killed 26 people at a church in Sutherland, Texas. The Air Force failed to submit the shooter’s history of domestic assault and a bad-conduct discharge to the FBI and the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).

    Texas Senator John Cornyn’s “Fix NICS” bill would require every federal agency to outline how it will ensure that relevant information gets to NICS; penalize federal agencies that fail by stripping appointees of potential bonuses; encourage states to maintain background databases to inform NICS; and beef up reporting on domestic violence.

    The bill would tighten an imperfect background-check system and is supported by the National Rifle Association, police associations and the White House. The House passed the legislation last year, but it also added a provision requiring reciprocity for owners of concealed firearm permits across state lines. Democrats oppose the reciprocity provision, which can’t pass the Senate.

    Republicans would be wise to let that reciprocity provision die and send a clean Fix-NICS bill to the Senate. The House can throw in a ban on so-called bump stocks, which let an AR-15 rifle fire more rapidly. That also has bipartisan support, and President Trump on Tuesday directed the Justice Department to propose a regulation banning bump stocks.

    These ideas might not have stopped Nikolas Cruz, but then neither would the oft-proposed ban on AR-15s. He could as easily have bought handguns, which is how Seung-Hui Cho killed 32 people at Virginia Tech in 2007. But one consequence of Parkland should be a debate on how American society can deny the dangerous mentally ill access to guns of any kind. That will require a rethinking of privacy laws and state mental-health statutes.

    Democrats keep saying they merely want “common sense” gun laws, not a ban, and the Cornyn bill is a test of their sincerity.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/better-...cks-1519170972

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  18. #48
    Some other details about the FBI failure that add some context:

    - FBI agents used to take turns fielding calls in their field offices. Recently, to save money, they consolidated to a call center in West Virginia, which takes calls for the nation. (The information transfer failure apparently happened between WV and the Miami office).

    - The issue technically was outside FBI jurisdiction, as it became a local homicide case. (This doesn't excuse the FBI's failure to inform local law enforcement in Broward County.) While the FBI is the current scapegoat, how often has the FBI been accused of trampling on states rights?

    - The students had complained multiple times to school authorities, local police, their parents... and called the FBI as well.

    This was unquestionably more than an FBI failure.

  19. #49
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    ... he could as easily have bought handguns
    This is erroneous. Florida requires a minimum age of 21 to purchase handguns, but for rifles / shotguns / AR-15s/AK-47s, the minimum age is 18.

    Cruz is 19. He would have had to travel to another state to get handguns, or possibly just go to a gun show, or buy them from off the street, etc.

  20. #50
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ma'ake View Post
    This was unquestionably more than an FBI failure.
    True. There are too many failures to count.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  21. #51
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    I am looking for feedback. It is my understanding that the AR-15 is the civilian version of the M16, a military rifle. It seems to me that the primary purpose of that rifle is to kill people, at distance, possibly many people in a single incident. I would like to hear from gun enthusiasts. Why should such a weapon be widely available? Why should there not be significant restrictions on a person‘s ability to acquire one? I get the need for a handgun, for personal protection. I’m just talking about military-style rifles. I really want to know what people think.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  22. #52
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I am looking for feedback. It is my understanding that the AR-15 is the civilian version of the M16, a military rifle. It seems to me that the primary purpose of that rifle is to kill people, at distance, possibly many people in a single incident. I would like to hear from gun enthusiasts. Why should such a weapon be widely available? Why should there not be significant restrictions on a person‘s ability to acquire one? I get the need for a handgun, for personal protection. I’m just talking about military-style rifles. I really want to know what people think.

    Well, I am not a gun enthusiast and I only know what I read in the papers, but I did read this the other day--the AR-15 is not suitable for hunting, because of the way its bullets tear up the flesh of the animal. As you say, it is designed to kill large numbers of people quickly. I saw some interviews with AR-15 enthusiasts, and what seems to be the overwhelming reason for owning one is that they are a lot of fun to shoot at ranges, and people want to preserve the right to do that. FWIW.

  23. #53
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    School shootings

    Quote Originally Posted by concerned View Post
    Well, I am not a gun enthusiast and I only know what I read in the papers, but I did read this the other day--the AR-15 is not suitable for hunting, because of the way its bullets tear up the flesh of the animal. As you say, it is designed to kill large numbers of people quickly. I saw some interviews with AR-15 enthusiasts, and what seems to be the overwhelming reason for owning one is that they are a lot of fun to shoot at ranges, and people want to preserve the right to do that. FWIW.
    I have actually shot one, and they are a lot of fun to shoot, and very easy to use. The one I had included a laser sight, which made it incredibly easy to hit a target, even for a novice like me. (That raises a different question.) Still...Can’t we at least make them difficult to get?
    Last edited by LA Ute; 02-21-2018 at 01:06 PM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  24. #54
    This paragraph in Maureen Dowd's NYT editorial reminded me of what Brother Wilcox at the U of U institute used to say about the last days:

    When societies try to protect a malevolent status quo, they become warped. The most chilling sign of this is when people look the other way as the most vulnerable members of society are preyed on.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/17/o...nion&smtyp=cur

    It fits here with gun control, but it also fits so much of the rest of our societal selfishness.

  25. #55
    Administrator U-Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by concerned View Post
    So I mentioned last week that might daughter, a high school senior, hopes that gun laws will change when her generation, the Columbine generation gets to vote. I guess I did not realize until last week how deeply affected she is by all the mass shootings--especially school shootings--that she has grown up with.

    so this weekend she wrote something for Vox that was printed today.

    https://www.vox.com/first-person/201...teens-protests


    She was also quoted and pictured in a Trib article this morning

    https://www.sltrib.com/news/educatio...hool-shooting/


    She--and a lot of her firends--are extremely determined. I personally hope it gets somewhere.
    Very well written. Good for her!

  26. #56
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I have actually shot one, and they are a lot of fun to shoot, and very easy to use. The one I had included a laser sight, which made it incredibly easy to hit a target, even for a novice like me. (That raises a different question.) Still...Can’t we at least make them difficult to get?
    I am no expert, so someone correct me if I'm wrong. But I think the main differences from normal hunting rifles, other than the cool/macho appearance are:

    • Ability to shoot as fast as you can pull the trigger (hunting rifles usually require cycling a bolt, lever, or pump to chamber the next round)
    • Higher capacity magazines, so less time lost reloading
    • Smaller caliber but high energy bullets. Most use .223 or 5.6mm ammo. I don't know about the tearing of flesh thing. I think that most hunters would consider the caliber to be too small for big game, but good for small game


    I think it is accurate to say that these are weapons designed for shooting other people, since they are based on weapons of war. But they can be a lot of fun to shoot for practice or small game. I think a lot of enthusiasts see them as excellent home defense weapons as well. It would probably be overkill (no pun intended) in a home invasion scenario. But in an apocalyptic scenario, it would be good for defending life and home from mass marauders. But what makes them good for that, also makes them good for these mass killings where time and volume of bullets is what is most important to the user.
    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  27. #57
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Here’s an interesting point of view that I do not necessarily endorse. These seem like do-able things that shouldn’t provoke screaming from gun rights people. (But who knows?)

    ________________________________

    Real Solutions for Curtailing Gun Violence

    The most predictable fallout from last week’s school shooting in Florida is the impassioned reactions from both sides of the gun divide, which guarantee nothing will change. Gun-control supporters demonize firearms and Second Amendment supporters, blaming the National Rifle Association for mass murder. Conservatives see their critics as caring little about the Constitution and knowing next to nothing about firearms.

    But people of good faith can find common ground and help reduce gun violence in the U.S.

    Let’s begin with a statistic: The number of guns in America rose nearly 50% between 1993 and 2013. During the same period, gun homicides fell by nearly 50%. The notion that more guns mean more crime is simplistic and false.

    Yet we still see frightening outbursts of armed violence—whether sudden, as in 17 dead within minutes at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, or in slow motion, as in 20 dead during January in Chicago—an improvement from last year.

    A University of Chicago study found that only 3% of Windy City gun crimes were committed with legally purchased guns. A federal study in 2004 put the percentage of gun crimes committed with legal guns at 11%. By and large the problem isn’t guns—it’s that people who shouldn’t have them are getting them and using them.

    As for mass shootings, almost all of them have involved mentally ill young men. Some used pistols, some used rifles, some had both—but as with street crime, people who shouldn’t have weapons got them.

    So, what to do? Here are three suggestions.

    First, to reduce street violence, dramatically increase penalties for stealing a firearm. According to FBI statistics, in the four years from 2012-15, 1.2 million guns were stolen from people, and another 22,000 were stolen from gun stores. Criminals respond to incentives like everybody else. A mandatory four-year prison term for illegally possessing a firearm, and a six-year term per gun for selling stolen firearms, would, if seriously enforced, escalate the risk of the crime past the point of anticipated benefits. Sentences should be so severe that a burglar would avoid taking the victim’s guns rather than face the consequences of being caught with them. Similarly harsh sentences should apply to felons carrying firearms. We don’t need a war on guns, but we do need a war on illegal guns. This will save more lives than any other single policy change.

    Second, enforce the law against straw purchases of handguns. A straw purchase happens when someone who is legally allowed to buy a gun walks into a store, completes the required paperwork, takes possession of the firearm—and then gives it or sells it to someone who isn’t allowed to own one. Federal law makes it a crime punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

    But those laws are rarely enforced. In the eyes of the federal government (and straw purchasers) it’s a low priority. If that changed, illegal guns from straw purchases would start to dry up. This requires no change in laws, only priorities. The president and attorney general could make it happen immediately.

    Third, find practical, legal ways of preventing seriously mentally ill people from acquiring firearms. Nikolas Cruz, the confessed killer of 17 in Florida last week, had been investigated by Florida’s child-protective agency in late 2016 after cutting himself in an online video. He stated he was going out to buy a gun (which he did). The investigating agency “found him stable enough not to be hospitalized.”

    Two months later, Mr. Cruz, a chronic troublemaker who had been repeatedly suspended from school, was referred for a “threat assessment.” Records show he attended half a dozen schools, including one for students with emotional problems. The FBI received a tip from someone who knew Mr. Cruz, cited concerns about his behavior and guns, and expressed concerns he could attack a school. The FBI has confirmed that it did not follow protocol in handling the reports. Nor did it follow up on a tip from a YouTube blogger after Mr. Cruz left a comment declaring: “Im [sic] going to be a professional school shooter.” The local sheriff said his office had received more than 20 calls about Mr. Cruz. Police had been called out to his house more than three dozen times.

    And he was able to buy a gun.

    Pre-emptively denying someone a constitutional right requires navigating a social, legal and political minefield. It is a tough job that needs to be done. The president should announce a task force to make clear recommendations to Congress on where that line should be drawn. Attempts to deny some Social Security Disability recipients gun rights recently ran afoul not only of Congress and the president, but also the American Civil Liberties Union and a host of disability-rights groups as well. But conservatives and liberals can agree that someone like Nikolas Cruz shouldn’t be allowed to legally buy a gun.

    All Americans want less gun violence. The way to get there is to keep guns away from people who have no business owning them, and punishing them when they do obtain or possess guns illegally.

    Mr. Carlson is a morning radio host on KVI in Seattle. He was a co-author of Washington state’s “Three Strikes and You’re Out” and “Hard Time for Armed Crime” ballot initiatives in the 1990s.

    _________________________

    Appeared in the February 21, 2018, print edition.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/real-so...nce-1519168921

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  28. #58
    I’ll give a brief rundown of the “AR-15”.

    It is the semi automatic version of the M-16. The actual M-16 is a select fire weapon that has multiple options on the safety switch. Safe, semi auto, burst or full auto

    There are actually AR-15’s chambered in .22, 9mm etc, although most are chambered in .223 or 5.56

    One that is chambered in 5.56 can also shoot .223. One chambered in .223 should not shoot 5.56 it’s dangerous.

    The weapon can be used at distances up to 600 meters or so, but that is not what it was designed for.

    It’s designed for combat inside 100 yards. It’s a very accurate weapon system. The round is only slightly bigger than a .22LR. The key is kinetic energy

    The round is traveling well over 2000 feet per second. The 9mm round most police departments use is about 1,200 feet per second.

    Because of this energy the round will go through walls, car doors etc without any trouble. It will also go through the soft body armor every police officer wears. Doesn’t even slow down.

    With things such as electronic or holographic sights they’re very accurate and easy to acquire a target very quickly.

    Most police officers carry a version in their vehicle. They’re only deployed in select situations.

    Now the round could be used for hunting, but it wouldn’t be the first choice of anyone really.

    The Las Vegas shooter used 100 rounds magazines and “bump stocks” to increase fire rates. Some of his rifles had aftermarket sights, most did not.

    The average AR comes with a 20 round magazine. Most police officers carry 30 round magazines (which really only hold 28 but that’s another story)


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  29. #59
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I have actually shot one, and they are a lot of fun to shoot, and very easy to use. The one I had included a laser sight, which made it incredibly easy to hit a target, even for a novice like me. (That raises a different question.) Still...Can’t we at least make them difficult to get?
    I work with a guy whose current interest is long range target shooting with a .50 caliber long barrel rifle. Quarter mile, half mile. You have to account for wind direction, gravity, etc, but it gives him a sense of calm after a stressful day at the office to be able to hit targets from half a mile.

  30. #60
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ma'ake View Post
    I work with a guy whose current interest is long range target shooting with a .50 caliber long barrel rifle. Quarter mile, half mile. You have to account for wind direction, gravity, etc, but it gives him a sense of calm after a stressful day at the office to be able to hit targets from half a mile.
    I have no problem with hobbies like that.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

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