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Blumenthal, Murphy: Gun Background Check Debate ‘Not Going Away’

by Hugh McQuaid | Mar 20, 2014 3:07pm
(37) Comments | Commenting has expired
Posted to: Public Safety

Hugh McQuaid Photo

U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal

For gun control supporters, there has been little national progress since Congress defeated background check legislation close to a year ago. But Connecticut’s senators said Thursday they’re in it for the long haul.

At a panel discussion on firearm background checks in East Hartford, U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal acknowledged a feeling of negativity among advocates of stricter gun laws but said he and U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy did not intend to abandon the issue.

“We’re not going away, we’re not surrendering despite the current pessimism that a lot of people may feel, we are going to continue this effort. We’re committed over the long haul to do it,” he said.

That pessimism may stem from steady inaction in Washington on the issue of gun control. In April of last year, supporters saw a bill to expand background checks for gun purchases tank when it fell four votes short of the supermajority it needed to pass the U.S. Senate. In June, Murphy and Blumenthal said they were optimistic about a second vote on the bill but the vote never occurred.

Now, as the 2014 midterm elections approach, Democrats are in danger of losing their majority in the U.S. Senate.

On Thursday, Blumenthal and Murphy sounded as if they had tempered their expectations somewhat as they met to raise awareness of two recent studies suggesting that background checks for gun purchases save lives.

Hugh McQuaid Photo “When we get this bill back on the floor—we don’t know when that will be, whether it’s this year, next year, three years from now—we want to have built up a mountain of information, a mountain of data so that no one can say with a straight face that we shouldn’t expand background checks,” Murphy said.

National polling suggest that most Americans—close to 90 percent—support requiring a background check for all gun purchasers. That would mean closing a current loophole that allows the private sale of weapons and sales at gun shows. Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, said about 40 percent of guns sold are purchased through that loophole.

Gross presented data compiled by the Brady Campaign during its 20 years of existence and expressed optimism about the prospects of adopting a new federal background check law. His organization helped pass a similar law in 1993 but it was permitted to expire in 2004. He said it took seven years to pass the original laws.

Hugh McQuaid Photo “That’s the context we have to look at. That’s the ‘marathon not a sprint’ context,” he said.  “The vote… in April was looked at and portrayed by some as a big defeat but it was actually… to us a demonstration of the momentum we have.”

For the moment, Murphy said it was important to compile evidence that background checks actually work. To that end the senators heard from Daniel Webster, a researcher at Johns Hopkins University who led a study of homicide rates in Missouri after that state repealed its own background check system in 2007.

Webster said gun murders in Missouri “shot up dramatically” after the law was repealed. After controlling for regional and national trends, researchers concluded that a significant portion of the increase could be attributed to the change in the state’s gun permitting system. They also observed a “two-fold increase” in the number of guns making their way into the hands of criminals.

Hugh McQuaid Photo “We feel like we’ve done a very systematic approach to rule out alternative hypotheses and connect this very large change, that … adds up to between 55 and 63 additional murders every single year since that law has been repealed,” Webster said.

Following the panel discussion, Blumenthal said he believed it was only a matter of time before the background check policy was adopted by Congress. He and Murphy began to make tightening gun restrictions a priority after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown on Dec. 14, 2012. Connecticut tightened its own gun control policies in the aftermath of those murders.

“I think history is on our side. Whether it’s this session or next session or at some point in the future. We will prevail, no question in my mind,” he said. “...I hope that another tragedy isn’t necessary to provide additional momentum.”

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(37) Comments

posted by: art vandelay | March 20, 2014  3:27pm

art vandelay

I just finished reading the Constitution of the State of Connecticut. In the First Article “Declaration of Rights”, Section 15 States “Every Citizen Has A Right to Bear Arms in Defense of Himself and the State”.  To my knowledge the Constitution has NEVER been Amended to abolish this Right.  INMO every law passed restricting the sale of arms is Unconstitutional.  Of course we can always argue the definition of the word “Arm”, but I think Bill Clinton is better at defining that term as I am.

posted by: Matt from CT | March 20, 2014  4:26pm

Grant nationwide reciprocity on carry permits so they’re treated like drivers licenses, and you might be able to get a deal on background checks.

Wait, that would take statesmanship and compromise instead of political grandstanding by Blumenthal & Murphy.  Never happen.

“Brady Campaign” is simply the re-branded name for Handgun Control, Inc., an ideologically extremist group founded on the idea that all civilian ownership of handguns and handgun ammunition should be outlawed.  Folks who carry their water are just as partisan, petty, and narrow minded as bible thumpin’ Republicans who pass laws trampling over constitutional rights simply to harass women seeking abortions.

They do so not out of sincere concerns but because their extremism earns them brownie points with their political base.

posted by: GBear423 | March 21, 2014  8:26am

GBear423

Blumenthal: “...I hope that another tragedy isn’t necessary to provide additional momentum.”

Its no longer shocking that he admits the use of tragedies to get momentum for their cause. He should just get to work on Legislation that may actually get passed.

posted by: gutbomb86 | March 21, 2014  9:11am

gutbomb86

@gbear - at least he has the guts to do something about it. And yet gun advocates are fine with allowing periodic mass murder. You can’t have it both ways. This is the basic fallacy from gun advocates - they are perfectly happy to allow the carnage all around them as long as it doesn’t inconvenience them from hoarding guns whatsoever. Background checks are not an infringement in any way and the fact that the NRA and some of its members are against background checks simply shows their colors. Murder Incorporated. They even managed to block mental health professionals from alerting authorities that mentally ill individuals shouldn’t possess firearms. Hello? They are *using* your blind faith for their monetary gain and as a result we get Newtown and Columbine, etc. Thanks for this mess you’ve made.

posted by: ASTANVET | March 21, 2014  9:45am

Gutbomb - man you are a caustic baiter.  I for one will take messy freedom over imperial control any day.  You can spend the rest of the day portraying gun advocates as child murderers all you want… how many mass murders have governments conducted?  And you want to ceed your (MY) rights to government.  Good luck pal.  The cost of freedom is allowing others to live their lives as they see fit - what you advocate is for control, not freedom.

posted by: GBear423 | March 21, 2014  9:48am

GBear423

@Gutbomb- LMAO, you will need to try better than that. i am sure you can elevate the insults to above 4th grade school yard level.

posted by: gutbomb86 | March 21, 2014  10:35am

gutbomb86

@Matt from CT - I like nationwide reciprocity idea if it would get universal background checks. Register every gun.

@gbear - I don’t see an insult in my comment. But I can see one in yours.

@astanvet - no baiting there. Just an honest assessment, and an uncaustic one at that. Obviously difficult for you to accept nonetheless because you seem to think living in a society with laws is “control.” Essentially you’re advocating anarchy. You continually blame liberals for what you perceive as bad policy decisions and suggest they have had long-term negative impacts, but you can’t accept the same about your own gun proliferation policies.

By enabling the unrestricted distribution of firearms to everyone and anyone, including the mentally ill, we have reached a point where heavily armed individuals are walking into schools and killing dozens. That’s the result of your 2nd amendment advocacy and a profit-driven gun manufacturing sector that owns the NRA’s management.

Government overreach is not the problem that you believe it is - that’s why the rest of us aren’t freaking out over it the way you do in these threads. It’s pretty simple and uncomplicated.

posted by: JH_1 | March 21, 2014  10:38am

Making a statement that gun advocates are perfectly happy to allow mass murder is ridiculous and you know it.


The problem always has been and always will be the concept of “give them and inch and they’ll take a foot”.


Background checks by themselves are fine.  I think most people would agree that criminals and the mentally ill shouldn’t have access to firearms.  But what if the background checks lead to registration, then bans, capacity restrictions, then eventual confiscation? 


Liberals will never stop.  Gun owners in CT are mistaken if they think the law passed last year was the end of it.  There’s more coming.  This is just an election year, so it’s quiet.


I, like so many people, want to see gun violence reduced.  If groups out there such as CAGV and the newer ones created last year truly focused on just reducing gun violence by addressing the root cause, such as mental health, low criminal prosecution rates, etc, I would donate to them.  Instead of addressing those issues, they are focused on limiting what I have access to buying.  So therefore, I choose to donate to gun advocacy groups instead.

posted by: GBear423 | March 21, 2014  10:45am

GBear423

@gutbomb -
*at least he has the guts to do something about it
* gun advocates are fine with allowing periodic mass murder
* they are perfectly happy to allow the carnage
*Thanks for this mess you’ve made

Implied 2A supporters are: gutless, murderers, happy to see carnage and caused Newtown (assuming the mess is reference to that).

Your a troll that is only on here to push buttons.

posted by: ASTANVET | March 21, 2014  10:52am

Gut - i’m not freaking out, i’m disappointed in your intellectual dishonesty.  First, national carry ideas violate state sovereignty, if they want to pursue individual state reciprocity, that is up to each state legislature.  I’m not an anarchist, but you seem to think I’m the problem…or people like me.  Where are the majority of crimes committed?  but you want to start with the people who are NOT the overwhelming crime problem.  We have thousands upon thousands of laws, do you think we could try to enforce the laws we have rather than try to make YOU feel better?  read a book, i would suggest the connecticut general statutes.  If after reading that you don’t believe that we have enough laws to govern a polite society - i’d say that you are looking to attack specific things that you don’t like.  That does not sound like sound governance… plain and simple you wont be happy until you force everyone to think like you do.  I’m the exact opposite, I want you to be free to live your life how you see fit, but don’t cross the line to infringe on how I want to live My life, which is of no threat to anyone, regardless of what kind of gun I have.

posted by: gutbomb86 | March 21, 2014  11:13am

gutbomb86

@gbear - I’ve made my point and made it clearly. Advocacy for unfettered access to firearms for everyone, including the mentally ill, brought us here. No is suggesting you or astanvet anyone who happens to be a reasonable and safe firearm owner took part in the mass murders at Newtown. But if you think you’re off the hook for your advocacy that has helped create the gun proliferation problem we have in the U.S. today, then you are sorely mistaken.

@JH_1 - if you want to see gun violence reduced - particularly the gun violence associated with criminal enterprises - you need to reduce the number of firearms in circulation. They are too easy to obtain at this point and criminals take advantage of that.

In terms of addressing mental illness, etc - there is never going to be a time when we can read into people’s minds to find their mental illnesses or their anger management problems. People are always going to be flawed. Easy access to firearms is the problem that can be addressed and that’s what Blumenthal and Murphy are trying to do.

But yet people need to leap to conclusions because they’re afraid of losing their legally purchased firearms. It’s unfortunate & misguided and the acrimony leads to the byproduct that plagues us - AR-15s ending up inside schools. Gun safety starts with the gun community, but part of that community can’t seem to recognize reality.

What some gun advocates see as a nefarious conspiracy against them is really just an ocean of parents and reasonable people who are desperate to make society a safer place. Owning and carrying a firearm does not make you safer. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Certainly it makes you *feel* safer. There’s a big difference, and that’s evident every day as we see firearm instructors shooting themselves and children killing themselves by accident.

@astanvet - “intellectual dishonesty” !!! What a hoot coming from you.

Don’t assume you’re the only one who reads, and don’t assume anyone is going to accept your attempt to redirect and obfuscate by suggesting that YOU and your advocacy for unfettered access to firearms hasn’t had an impact other than you not committing a crime. The *are* consequences to allowing the mentally ill to easily access firearms. You are essentially trying to deny that obvious fact.

This is a discussion about firearms proliferation and the obvious value and proven positive result of requiring background checks on every gun purchase.

posted by: dano860 | March 21, 2014  11:39am

The question I can’t get answered is a simple one.
What was the EMERGENCY that required the middle of the night legislation, AKA long term gun confiscation plan for Ct. residents only. Yup, it was hatched right here in little ole’ Ct.?

Once again I would like to remind everyone that the NRA represents fewer than 25% of firearm owners, sportsmen & sports women. The latter being the fastest growing segment of our population that are firearm owners & pistol carry permit holders. Check out….
everydaytacticalgear.com
shadyladyshooting.com

posted by: JH_1 | March 21, 2014  11:53am

Dano - The emergency was that the President was giving a speech on gun control in Hartford 4 days later.  It wouldn’t have looked good for the Governor if the President came to give that speech in a state that hadn’t passed anything yet.

posted by: art vandelay | March 21, 2014  11:57am

art vandelay

To Dano88,
The answer to your question is simple and I believe you know it.  The EMERGENCY wasn’t emergency at all.  It was “Feel Good” legislation to make themselves look good in a tragic situation.  Legislators wanted the let the low information voters know they were doing something about the Newtown Tragedy.  Is gun confiscation the ultimate goal of the Progressive Left?  You bet it is.  Would they like to abolish the 2nd Amendment?  You bet they do.  Remember folks “The West Wasn’t Won With a Registered Gun”.

posted by: Matt from CT | March 21, 2014  1:10pm

>@Matt from CT - I like
>nationwide reciprocity idea
>if it would get universal
>background checks. Register
>every gun.

That isn’t going to happen.

There only reason to register guns is to, in the future, confiscate them.

Do not confuse that issue with background checks.

You can implement background checks with an implied “friends and family” exemption for non-commercial sellers by making it a felony to transfer permanent control a firearm to another person if, at the time of the transfer a background check would have revealed the person was ineligible to possess firearms.

Want to gift a firearm to a close friend or family member without going through a dealer or other background check mechanism?  No problem…just realize if you make a bad judgement it’s your butt (and future right to possess firearms) on the line.

You can also make requirements for people to retain records to whom they have sold firearms, so that investigators involved in legitimate investigations can follow the trail from the original retail sale.

But requiring background checks between family or friends or registration databases fundamentally threaten gun rights by subjecting them to surveillance which could be easily abused…while not providing any meaningful check on unlawful use of firearms.

It also serves as a way to harass people into forgoing their constitutional rights.

I own a single firearm—a single shot .22 rimfire rifle.  It was gifted to me when I was 16 by a woman who had known me since I was born and my mother since she was a teen, after she received my mom’s permission. 

Requiring even modest fees—say $20 for the background check, and $35 for the permit you now need for ammunition, would almost exceed the total sum I have spent on this gun in both accessories (a sling) and ammunition in the 25+ years I have owned it.  Would someone casually interested or unsure of their interest pursue the activity if made to jump through hoops simply to jump through hoops?

It is that type of petty, vindictive harassment that isn’t right and is deliberately designed to discourage folks from exercising their rights.

Registration of that gun would also be problematic, as it was manufactured over 60 years ago, before serial numbers were mandated.

posted by: gutbomb86 | March 21, 2014  2:29pm

gutbomb86

@matt from CT - that’s a false argument. We register every vehicle and no one is taking away vehicles. It’s a ridiculous argument to suggest that registering every gun means confiscation - it’s that paranoia that paralyzes the discussion of reducing gun violence.

I appreciate the nice stories about how an antique weapon was handed down - those are nice things and a well-crafted firearm is simply that, well crafted and appreciated as such. But you can put a stamp on it somewhere if need be without harming it. And the act of running a background check on a transfer of a firearm within a family is appropriate for the same reasons it’s appropriate to do a background check to avoid handing guns to the mentally ill.

The idea that a family member would be subject to a felony if they transferred a firearm to a family member who can’t possess a one… is problematic at best. If you’re OK with charging a parent with a felony because their son or daughter managed to get into the gun safe while they weren’t paying attention, well I think you’ll have problems getting that through as well.

It’s these off-the-books gun transfers that are the root of the problem with proliferation to criminals.

Cmon, guys. This really isn’t that hard. It’s circular conversations like these that prove my point. Not everyone should possess firearms and it’s the gov’t's responsibility - not the gun community’s - to enforce the safe regulation of firearms. That has failed so far, mainly because of the opposition from folks like the gun advocates in this thread and the dollars they spend on said opposition. The fact is, we have 3 million people in CT alone and even a tiny percentage of those being unbalanced means a large number of people are unbalanced and dangerous. It is appropriate to set the bar as high as it needs to be for safety.

posted by: ASTANVET | March 22, 2014  7:08am

Gut- who’s obfuscating? didn’t you just flip the whole conversation to talk about the ‘proliferation of guns’? Interesting fact…. with more concealed carry states, crime dropped significantly in the last 20 years.  Huh.. more guns…

posted by: DavisThompson | March 22, 2014  9:25am

A few thoughts:

Bulemthal says, in essence, that they have to pass universal checks before another Newtown happens. This ignores the facts that universal checks woul dhave had no impact on Newtown. Or Aurora, or VA tech, or Tucson, or the DC Navy Yard, or Colombia Mall and on and on.

Blumenthal uses data compiled by a virulent anti-gun organization instead of turning to data provided by neutral agencies or researchers. 

The 90% approval of universal background checks (UBC) is a lie. The question was about background checks at gun shows, not a guy selling a shotgun to his neighbor. There was no actual polling on the specifics of Manchin-Toomey.

The Missouri issue he raises has also been credibly challenged. And as always, you will not they only refer to “gun deaths” not all homicides. That alone tells you they’re skewing data and hiding something.

The 40% of all sales are without a background check has been demonstrated time and time again to be an outright fabrication. Is it too much to expect a reporter writing on this topic to do even the most basic research? Or is what Blumenthal and the Brady Center considered holy writ which cannot be challenged?

In the wake of Newtown, universal background checks were considered a done deal, even in the pro gun community. What changed was Feinstein’s resurrection of the AWB, gun control in Conn. and Maryland, and most importantly, the New York SAFE Act and Andrew Cuomo’s infamous “confiscation is on the table.” Combine that with relentless attacks on lawful gun owners in the press and we in the pro-gun community decided we’d had enough.

We are going to fight any and all gun control laws that come down the pipe while at the same time working to repeal bad laws already in place.

The current registration mess in Connecticut is one bit of this.

posted by: DavisThompson | March 22, 2014  9:27am

Reply to Gutbomb below. I defy you to present one shred of evidence that would demonstrate that the bill Blumenthal is pushing, universal background checks, would have stopped any of the recent mass murders.

This is typical of the anti-gun side. They push their proposals with the promise they will “save children” or “prevent massacres” without providing any actual evidence of how this will happen.

A pure appeal to the emotion with absolutely no factual or logical basis.

posted by: J rights | March 22, 2014  9:42am

Here is some history for you Senator:

“They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

Benjamin Franklin
“A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks.”

Thomas Jefferson

“A Bill of Rights is what the people are entitled to against every government, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference.”

Thomas Jefferson

The rights WE all have have are in the Constitution no one is obligated to practice or take part in those rights. But by the same token no one who has the right should be restricted or forbidden from practicing or taking part in those rights.
BTW the next time a criminal commits a crime or is found in possession of a firearm see if they have 10 or less bullets in the magazine or if they legally purchased or if they even filled out the forms for the purchase of the firearms.
The laws only apply to those who abide.

posted by: J rights | March 22, 2014  9:53am

If the senator blumenthal likes stats he may want to read the following:

https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/bjs/grants/239272.pdf

posted by: J rights | March 22, 2014  10:03am

@gutbomb86
https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/bjs/grants/239272.pdf

posted by: ThomasR | March 22, 2014  10:07am

gutbomb86

“And yet gun advocates (gun control advocates) are fine with allowing periodic mass murder.”

Two things in particular stands out GB86; This obsession on assault weapons; FBI crime statistics show that all long guns; shot guns, bolt actions and assault weapons are used in about 1% of all crime, including murder. So eliminating ALL long guns would impact crime;including murder, about 1%. But let’s say we just outlawed assault weapons; “because they can kill the most people the quickest”; except when they don’t.

  The D.C. Navy yard shooter used a pump action shot gun with a 5 round tube magazine; one of the most common SG available; and yet he killed 12 people and injured 8; it was also bought at a gun store with a back ground check. Nope; assault weapons are scary looking, but according to FBI crime statistics; hands, feet and clubs kill more people than long guns.

  The other thing way that gun control advocates cause mass murder is the creation of gun free zones; which are mass murderer empowerment zones.

  When the last time you heard of A mass murder at a gun show, gun store, gun range, police station or for that matter, any place that allows legal conceal carry?

  Mass murderer’s are evil; not stupid.

  So do more guns in public hands mean more blood in the street? Well, when we look at FBI Crime stats, we as a nation are at 40 year lows on all crime, including murder, and yet we have over 10 million citizens licensed to carry a concealed weapon, 44 states with shall issue concealed carry, 5 states that don’t require any licensing to carry an open or concealed weapon(These states have over all crime rates lower than the national average),and the states that have the highest gun crime and murder rates are those with the greatest gun control, Chicago being a prime example, the national average murder rate is 4.5/per 100,000; Chicago. 15/ per 100,000.

  so in the end GB86, The answer is simple; allow common law abiding citizens the ability to practice their natural and civil right to bear arms in public; that is what will stop bad guys with a gun; a good guy with a gun.

posted by: J rights | March 22, 2014  10:25am

One more piece of history:

http://www.coleshillhouse.com/the-auxiliary-units-history.php

posted by: Joebigjoe | March 22, 2014  2:16pm

Gutbomb, so glad to see you are equal opportunty in attacking others other than me.

You said” They even managed to block mental health professionals from alerting authorities that mentally ill individuals shouldn’t possess firearms”

Have you heard of the ACLU? In Virginia Tech Cho was declared incompetent by the court yet went out and bought a gun after a clean background check.

I’ll bet if we took the ACLU and HIPAA out of the equation that would be a good start. Once we do that we can stop making veterans with PTSD (which is almost every one of them) targets for this administration and some states to block from getting a permit.

Then we can prevent the ones that we can probably all agree on from buying a gun, but before you look at the NRA and other gun rights organizations they are just trying to balance the lunatic left.

Gutbomb, maybe we can agree on just one thing.

Don’t you think it’s wrong that we can not see Adam Lanzas medical records even after being one of the worst mass murderers in our countries history? We get high level reports in the media but we dont know if in these notes might be comments that would have shown that he had evil plans.

In the Colorado theatre showing the judge tried to throw a Fox news reporter in jail for contempt because she reported on some notebook and there are medical records showing he was a threat.

In the Aurora Colorado high school shooting the trained security officers went to the administration about this kid because they saw him as a threat but were told “dont worry about and dont you dare put anything in writing.”

Looks like people are worried about the wrong things.

posted by: gutbomb86 | March 22, 2014  3:41pm

gutbomb86

Lot’s of comments to respond to…

@thomasR - I never mentioned assault weapons here, so you appear to be recycling some sort of talking point, and you punctuate that point with a two false ideas:

1) That allowing everyone to carry firearms will lead to less shootings. There’s no data to support that. There certainly is data to prove that the presence of firearms leads to more shootings.

2) Gun free zones… this is an utterly ineffective, illogical NRA talking point. Not based in fact. There’s only one zone that matters - within the borders of the United States. We are allowed to freely travel anywhere in the U.S., and lots of places fail to track or regulate the sale of firearms. Suggesting that gun crime happens in a city like Chicago because it is “gun free” ignores the obvious facts about Chicago and any urban community - people still sell illegal drugs there despite the very obvious fact that cities have major resources dedicated to stopping drug trafficking. Mass shooters, in almost every case, are suicidal. They lash out at what they perceive to be their tormentor or what have you - they don’t target places because “there are no guns there” ... that would assume they are thinking rationally and we know they are not. Gun free zone argument is a useless boondoggle.

@astanvet - there’s no evidence whatsoever to effectively or definitively correlate a drop in gun crimes to the growth of states that allow concealed carry. You may want that to be the reason, but anyone can list plenty of other factors, including the mass incarceration of young men in poverty who were involved in the drug trade. Concealed carry as a deterrent is a fantasy for many gun advocates, who want to believe it. There’s no real evidence to suggest that they serve as a deterrent anywhere.

@davisthompson - background checks ideally would include some real obvious data - like whether you or a resident in your home, where you plan to store your firearms, has ever been diagnosed with a mental illness at any time. Mental health professionals would ideally be able to inform authorities who handle firearm licensing when an individual is a danger to themselves or their family or society at large.

@joebig - correction, there are no reporters at Fox. Only entertainers and paid liars. Don’t bother me with anything that comes from that network. It’s nonsense.

Also, the fact that you think veterans diagnosed with PTSD should be allowed permits to carry firearms pretty much shows a poor grasp of facts with respect to the rate of suicides among our veterans - highest ever if I’m not mistaken - and the fact that suicide success rates are highest with firearms. So you’re essentially advocating that we hand firearms to veterans who have been diagnosed with a mental illness that includes suicidal tendencies. Ridiculous, but not unexpected either.

This whole thread is full of gun advocates who can’t grasp the simple, obvious, incontrovertible mathematical fact: where there are guns, shootings are more likely happen, whether by accident or otherwise.

We need laws and enforcement that are going to decrease the number of firearms floating around in illegal commerce, and we need laws that are going to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill. It’s not rocket science, but yet you folks can’t grasp it. Your first instinct is to be partisan and overly fixated on the value of carrying. It only adds to the risk associated with the presence of the firearm. It doesn’t make anyone safer, but rather the opposite. It does give you an opportunity for a good ole quick draw situation - but life isn’t TV and more often than not innocent people get killed.

Make no mistake about it, when you advocate for unfettered access to firearms you advocate for a society where the mentally ill can easily get their hands on weapons and murder people. And the level of willful belligerence demonstrated by gun advocates who comment here and elsewhere online often makes me wonder how many of you would shoot someone for using a phone in a movie theater.

posted by: art vandelay | March 23, 2014  6:24am

art vandelay

@gutbomb86,
I’m no gun lover by any stretch of the imagination.  I do not like them and never did.  That said, I do respect the Constitution and a person’s right to own them.  I feel most if not all the laws restricting their use are UNCONSTITUTIONAL.  I do see lower crime where people are allowed to carry concealed weapons.
What I do see from a historical perspective is that governments who confiscate all privately held firearms leads to complete dictatorships.  It happened in Russia during Revolution and after Hitler was appointed Chancellor.  History always repeats itself.

I got a kick out of your comment about Fox News Correspondents as entertainers.  Do you believe the Commentators on MSNBC are legitimate correspondents or entertainers as well?

posted by: gutbomb86 | March 23, 2014  11:32am

gutbomb86

@art

I do see lower crime where people are allowed to carry concealed weapons.

That is pure fantasy. There is no direct correlation between the hidden threat of “citizen law enforcement” and a drop in crime. None.

Gun advocates and “constitutional” advocates alike - you seem to think that by allowing concealed carry in a given state makes one bit of difference. Criminals do not care. You “see it”? Spare us that conjecture.

There are guns everywhere, 99.99999999% of the time they are carried concealed by non-law enforcement personnel. There is zero difference between a concealed carry state and a state that doesn’t allow it - gun advocates have made that a certainty. Guns are everywhere in the US - 300 million+ in circulation with tens of thousands more dumped into circulation on a monthly basis. You can’t really discuss this with any clarity without understanding the impact of proliferation.

Again, gun advocates don’t want to believe that proliferation is the problem, but then again gun advocates can understand the difference between the added risk of a gun being present and no gun being present.

On your historical perspective comments, they don’t really have a bearing on this because you’re assuming, incorrectly, that people and the gov’t are trying to take away all of the guns. It’s a ridiculous premise with no factual basis in either their motivation or their ability to accomplish it. They *will* and *should* take the guns away from crazy people though, and (based on purely anecdotal evidence) I’d be willing to bet that anonymous online comment threads are where those folks tend to congregate.

On Fox news and MSNBC ... what does MSNBC have to do with it? Are you suggesting that it’s OK for Fox to promote complete falsehood and fabrication to fulfill a partisan agenda because you think MSNBC does the same thing? That would be yet another ridiculous premise. If you want real news, vetted and researched, turn off the television.

posted by: art vandelay | March 23, 2014  3:33pm

art vandelay

@Gutbomb 86,
I agree.  If you want real news turn off the TV.

posted by: Joebigjoe | March 23, 2014  4:11pm

I started typing back to you Gutbomb and then after a few paragraphs and links correcting your false information from the Planet Pluto, I decided why bother?

I will give you credit though and no BS here. You went back and responded to each and every persons comment which is time consuming and except for your fantasy facts actually considerate. Combative yes but also shows you took the time to misinterpret and misstate (or you understood and went into left spin zone)  what every one of us said.

As a Conservative and mostly Republican voter I ask you to think of this. Economic collapse, some new Avian flu epidemic, an EMP exploded in our atmosphere, and a person like me as your President.

Do you like the 2nd amendment more now because buddy you’re first in line for my reducation FEMA camp unless you can fight back in such a way that my hungry troops that want to protect their families don’t want any part of you?

posted by: art vandelay | March 24, 2014  6:39am

art vandelay

It’s amazing that the one issue that sparks debate like no other is GUNS!  People in this state could care less about how much they’re taxed,  the amount of money recklessly spent, or how much we’re in the hole.  Mention one word about the 2nd Amendment and all heck breaks loose.  The Gun Lobby would have more success defeating Malloy or any Progressive Socialist Democrat legislator than any Conservative Republican ever could.

posted by: dano860 | March 24, 2014  9:49am

What this is really about is the making of laws. The fact remains that Ct is a blue State and this pair is responding to the money an votes that put them there.
Making laws is a lot like making bologna, hot dogs and sausage, it’s not pretty. C.M. said they will hit the floor with a “mountain” of data. This will be an extremely tilted mountain but so too will the oppositions mountain. Left leaning or right leaning isn’t the question, many firearms owners are on both sides of this fence. There is no true line down the middle on this issue.
As we are a land of laws there is only one way to get the results you want…get involved.
Let’s not forget that on average only about 20% of the eligible voters do vote.
Right after Newtown I implored the legislature to think long term as to the consequences of their actions. They didn’t and here we are with a rushed and cobbled together mess. The same holds true here, there can and should be a manageable solution that they can achieve.  Firearms owners and shooting sports advocates have fears. The manufacturers have fears. The retailers have fears and the politicians have fears. The economy will suffer (more) if they don’t get it right. Tax revenues will suffer but the crime rate may not.
Lives will be the big factor in the argument but when you compare drug abuse to firearm abuse the firearms look pretty good. Loss of life is no joke but there are many things in our daily routines that bring us closer to death than firearm encounters. Automobiles take more lives than firearms but most of us jump in them without giving it a second thought.
As I have told many prospective and elected officials, the voters you need to sway to your side are the un affiliated. A republican has the republican vote and visa versa for the democrat and in Ct, where the democrats have the upper hand and it is passed down through the family, the republicans need to be far more diligent in their efforts.
Yes, tilted and tainted data will carry the bill into law. As a land of laws we will obey them until we can change them but if they are done to the satisfaction of both trains of thought things may actually improve and stabilize.
The war on drugs appears to be a waste of time and money but they don’t get heated about that. Firearms aren’t the biggest problem out there either but they have emotions all cranked up based upon a tragedy involving children and innocent, loving people.
Laws creating felons aren’t the results that any legislator should be trying to put in place. None of the approaches they have on the table will prevent the problems they perceive, heck just last week a school in China had dozens of children poisoned. Sick people will always find a way to hurt us. They need the help.

posted by: Joebigjoe | March 24, 2014  12:34pm

Art, is it really the gun issue? I have my reasons to gravitate to that issue but I think if it were Freedom of Speech that people would care even more. It’s just with guns I get riled up with some stupidity and lack of knowledge of history and that scares me. The lack of depth in some anti gun arguments is also beyond frustrating.

For example “universal background checks.” I’m for keeping guns out of the hands of bad guys and sick people, but no one has ever gone into the weeds on how this would work. They don’t because then they would see the obstacles put up by people that are actually for it.

As for speech I get to sign up for an account here and post my views for people to attack or support. What would these same antigun people think if you needed to register your speech and if it were viewed as extreme and not centrist register with the government to get the right to say it? If you had a book that you owned about too much government spying, and wanted to give it to your child you needed to register it.

I like to believe that all the German soldiers that took away the Jewsish people werent all evil, but did it because their government would have done something to them if they disbeyed the order. Only fools would think that we are so different or would be so different after a horrible economic collapse which drove much of that behavior.

posted by: gutbomb86 | March 25, 2014  10:01pm

gutbomb86

As a Conservative and mostly Republican voter I ask you to think of this. Economic collapse, some new Avian flu epidemic, an EMP exploded in our atmosphere, and a person like me as your President.

Do you like the 2nd amendment more now because buddy you’re first in line for my reducation FEMA camp unless you can fight back in such a way that my hungry troops that want to protect their families don’t want any part of you?

Wow. Just wow. Those are your words, JoeBigJoe. Not to mention your fixation on the atrocities of WWII and your complete disregard for reality today in the U.S. We’re in the information age here but you’re stuck in 1939.

It must be Fox News that has you thinking that we need to take the Zombie Apocalypse and EMP-attack fiction into consideration when we figure out how to better safeguard firearms. Ridiculous.

posted by: Joebigjoe | March 26, 2014  6:14am

Reality today in the US Gutbomb? We don’t know what will happen tomorrow.

Would that be the disregard for the Constitution that takes place today across a number of Amemdments? Would that be the ignorance of many people in society on what’s going on in the US and the world at levels never seen before? Would that be the millions of people that rely not on themselves to live, but on government?

The reality is that the things I mentioned may not occur in my lifetime, nor may they occur in my childrens lifetimes, but they will occur because history ALWAYS repeats itself. It is our job to safeguard the Constitution for ourselves and future generations and that means all of it, not just the 2nd Amendment.

Two things Gutbomb:

1) I am not a Jimmy Carter fan, but in the last few days when he expresses concern that his private conversations are being watched by the NSA and otehrs, so he uses snail mail, I pay attention.

2) Similar to the antigun politicians that say that you don’t need those big black guns because we, the state, will protect you, I think of the Ukraine. They gave up their nuclear weapons and pretty much their military because of a promise by our government that in return for doing that, we would protect them. How’s that working out?

Not sure if you watched 60 Minutes the other night on the Pink Panther jewel thieves. I saw Ron Noble the Head of Interpol talk about them and not knowing anything about Ron Noble, I decided to check him on Google. I found this.

The Democrat head of Interpol is <a

posted by: Joebigjoe | March 26, 2014  6:30am

Gutbomb, here you go. Right from Obamas mouth. His number one concern is right in our backyard, but I’m crazy for thinking about it. Words can’t describa the horror that would occur, but I can assure you that if that occurred, life up here would not be anything like it is now when the banks cant open, the hospitals extend to parking lots, refugees, etc.

Hey, if it’s what keeps him awake at night, I think I’d like to buy the kind of gun that will give me the piece of mind and chance to have my family sleep at night.

“So my response then continues to be what I believe today, which is: Russia’s actions are a problem. They don’t pose the number one national security threat to the United States. I continue to be much more concerned when it comes to our security with the prospect of a nuclear weapon going off in Manhattan,” said Obama”

posted by: GBear423 | March 26, 2014  6:38am

GBear423

@Art:  I do not think its just “guns”, its the continuous assault on our Liberty. It seems unending the constant struggle to fight people who think socialism is thuper duper. I am a combat vet, have NO firearms in my home, and live on a pretty safe and sleepy little lane in a small town. I am a tea party guy, an NRA member, and participate in town management/activities. I fear this Gun Control movement and see it as an assault on the Constitution. Taxes and debt are another fight, for certain its a tough uphill one. Though I am glad to see that some of CT gives a damn about our Bill of Rights, and are furious when a political party tries to change it.