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OP-ED | Whatever It Takes When It Comes To Gun Policy

by | Sep 11, 2015 10:58am () Comments | Commenting has expired | Share
Posted to: Analysis, Civil Liberties, Congress, Law Enforcement, Opinion, Millennial Voices, Public Safety, Newtown

“Whatever it takes” means setting a standard and cleaning house.

Gun control groups’ rhetoric and that of the politicians who support them is finally matching the urgency of the moment. Although the slogan “Not One More” is aspirational, the new slogan, “Whatever It Takes” reflects a more accurate view of what is required.

Just last week, Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut put out a very strong statement, suggesting the Congress’ failure to act to curb gun violence has engendered complicity in the murders that result. “I’ve never been more offended by anything in my life than the absolute, utter inability of Congress to even have a debate about how we might be able to do things differently,” Murphy told the Huffington Post in an interview.

Even before the Sandy Hook tragedy, which took place in his former congressional district, and certainly since, Murphy has been a consistent, powerful voice for gun safety. Yet, Murphy, like many other Democratic leaders, hasn’t taken one necessary step — delegitimizing the NRA in every possible way, including withdrawing support for local Democrats who receive the NRA’s endorsement or support its positions.

The NRA is the single most important obstacle to gun reform. Whatever common ground might exist between reasonable gun owners and those seeking sensible restrictions on gun purchases cannot be found so long as the NRA is at the table. And the NRA will be at the table so long as the general public perceives it favorably — as is the case in the most recent national poll on the question. Of those surveyed, 43 percent had a positive view of the NRA; 32 percent had a negative view.

The NRA has retained its positive public perception despite the fact that it is the force most responsible for killing the bi-partisan 2013 Manchin-Toomey bill on background checks proposed after Sandy Hook. The NRA also is responsible for Youtube videos like the one in which a gun advocate says that if Connecticut seeks to enforce its gun laws, shooting the people who are doing the enforcing, presumably police officers, would be justified. That this vile video didn’t result in more attention and criticism is a problem in itself.

It is just one example in an overwhelming case against the NRA that includes board member Ted Nugent saying Obama should suck on a machine gun, and another board member blaming the murdered Charleston pastor for his own death. Anyone who pays attention to what NRA officials say knows what sort of people they are.

Gun control advocates’ mission therefore should be obvious: to show the public that the NRA is a not a legitimate advocacy group, with whom they may agree on some points, but a front for political extremists and for the gun manufacturers who oppose increased background checks because they will decrease sales. The gun safety movement needs to pull away the NRA’s seat at the table. The way to do that is to make the group politically toxic, to make an NRA endorsement so poisonous in enough districts that politicians will stop seeking it.

The easiest place to start is to reject any claim the group has to bipartisanship. Since the year 2000, the NRA has launched vicious attacks against every Democratic presidential nominee and president, every year, every time, without fail. As of late, the group has even begun to turn on Democrats who vote its way. U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor of Arkansas voted against Manchin-Toomey and the NRA still endorsed against him. He is now former U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor.

Playing the NRA’s game is a loser for Democrats at the national level. Yet that’s not the only field on which the game is played. The NRA has used state-level endorsements to maintain its bi-partisan credibility, which in turn bolsters the group’s favorable public posture. Democratic leaders’ tolerance of NRA-endorsed local politicians causes serious damage.

Connecticut is a perfect example of the reach of pro-gun advocacy in what is an overwhelmingly pro-gun safety state. Following the Sandy Hook tragedy, a bill passed by a more than 2-to-1 margin that limited to 10 the number of rounds a magazine could fire and increased licensing requirements for the purchase of ammunition, among other measures. Still, 15 Democrats voted against the legislation, 14 on pro-gun grounds. The state Democratic establishment never challenged those legislators and 12 of them are still in the legislature. (Full disclosure, I challenged one of them unsuccessfully in a Democratic primary.)

Those pro-gun Democratic votes seemingly didn’t matter in 2013, but the presence of those 12 pro-gun Democrats did two years later. They helped kill a 2015 bill that would have required those who had a temporary restraining order against them to give up their guns. The bill was defeated, even though former Arizona Congresswoman Gabby Giffords , a poignant victim of gun violence herself, came all the way to Connecticut to offer her support.

Here’s the point. Senator Murphy has influence over those 12 people. He can tell them: You can accept the NRA’s support, or you can earn support from people like me; you can never have both. This is not a litmus test on the issue of gun policy. It is instead a litmus test on extremism. It will be a long slog to delegitimize the NRA, but it has to start with this principle. Although there is room to negotiate over what the solution should be, the NRA should never be in the room. “Whatever It Takes” mean ostracizing the NRA once and for all.

Jason Paul of West Hartford is a partner in a campaign consulting company called What’s Next. He is also a graduate of the University of Connecticut Law School.

DISCLAIMER: The views, opinions, positions, or strategies expressed by the author are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, or positions of CTNewsJunkie.com.

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(26) Archived Comments

posted by: Greg | September 11, 2015  1:25pm

Interesting analysis. A few comments and observations of my own:
- The attempted rebranding of “gun control” into “gun safety” shows how toothless the gun control movement really is, and resorting to a change in optics and language clearly has not worked.  After all, who can be against gun safety?
- The rhetoric out of gun control groups borders on the absurd; some matching or exceeding the vitriol you note above out of the NRA.  Many have taken to social media to wish death upon gun owners, NRA members, etc in very vile manners…The NRA does not have a monopoly on extreme rhetoric. 
- A number of major gun control groups are funded by Bloomberg (a billionaire, for those unaware).  Everytown for Gun Safety, Moms Demand Action, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, et al.  Moms Demand Action was conveniently founded by an ex PR executive from Monsanto and WellPoint who attempted to bill herself as a stay-at-home-mom, and the organization conveniently got lots of Bloomberg funds soon after.  Normally folks such as the author would protest the heavy funding of rich 1%ers for political means, but not so with Bloomberg and billionaire funded gun control groups.
- Said gun control groups hoot about background checks, but instead engage in pointless bully campaigns around the country regarding open or concealed carry.  Kroger, Starbucks, Panera Bread, Chipoltle…all came into the sights (pun intended) of Moms Demand or whomever and the ensuing jihad of nothing more than screeching and emotional appeals produced half hearted yet toothless changes to company policy…or not.  In addition, these geniuses decided to go to the safest state in the nation—Vermont—to attempt to pass some manner of gun control there under the false pretense of billing Vermont as the source for NYC’s illegal gun trade.  While illogical on a number of levels, this campaign in a very liberal state with near zero gun laws and the lowest gun violence rate in the nation predictably got nowhere.  A huge waste of Bloomberg’s money for no tangible result.
- Gun Control Statistics Fail:  Last year the FBI released statistics showing violent crime to be the lowest since the 70’s, largely ignored by the aforementioned gun control groups.  The kicker: the expiry of the federal assault weapons ban expired in 2004 and has been shown to have been useless, a number of states loosening gun laws in general in the past 10-20 years, and the loosening of carry laws in states all over the country. 

I’d welcome Mr. Paul to cite statistics from the FBI to make his case of stronger gun laws producing favorable violent crime outcomes, but considering well funded groups cannot even do so I presume he cannot either.  Feel free to prove me wrong.

posted by: Truth_To_Power | September 11, 2015  2:37pm

PART 1

“Whatever It Takes When It Comes To Gun Policy”, says the author. Except, apparently, for an honest discussion on the 2nd Amendment and statistics on violence.
All responsible, honest gun owners deplore what happened in Sandy Hook and most would have laid their lives on the line to protect these beautiful children. They are not, however, willing to politicize this tragedy to advance their rights to self-defense, like the second amendment haters are doing.
It’s disgusting - but completely in character and therefore expected - to hear many shouting for ‘an honest discussion on guns’ while leaving honesty completely out of their discussion. Here are some things that you WON’T hear during this ‘honest discussion, from those jumping on the anti-second amendment bandwagon:
1. The Second Amendment says NOTHING about hunting and target shooting. It was created to protect citizens against bad guys, both individuals and over-reaching governments: ESPECIALLY over-reaching governments. The colonists suffered many abuses from the King until the British soldiers took steps to take away their weapons and ammunition – this caused the famous ‘shot heard ‘round the world’. If the soldiers had succeeded and the citizens had simply rolled over, this country would not be the beacon of hope to the world that it has been for so long: a beacon because of the freedoms and opportunities afforded its’ citizens by the constitution and bill of rights. Ask the citizens in Egypt or Turkey how badly they wish they had the right to own weapons for ‘the security of a free state’ at this very moment. Even President Kennedy had concerns about a US Military coup in this country - for those of you who want to insist we have nothing to fear from our government (while complaining that they can’t buy a large soft-drink in NYC).
2. As Greg indicates in his post, the FBI released statistics showing violent crime is the lowest since the 70’s. This, in spite of gun ownership increasing greatly over the same time period. This blows the argument that more guns create more violence, completely out of the water.
3. Many of those screaming to ban ‘assault weapons’ and ‘military-style weapons’ have no clue what either of these are or – worse – ignore the truth during their ‘honest discussions’. They certainly weren’t among those used by the pathetic Adam Lanza or most mass-murderers. Yet in spite of this ignorance they want the rest of us to believe and accept what they have to say.
4. Assault weapons are already banned for a large percentage of citizens - it takes a special permit to own one.

posted by: Truth_To_Power | September 11, 2015  2:38pm

PART 2

5. The second amendment haters are always complaining that the average gun owner has no training and therefore shouldn’t be allowed to own guns. Yet when a gun owner purchases 5,000 rounds of ammunition to obtain training over a long weekend at the range, they scream that no one should have that much ammunition. As usual, they want it both ways. And yes, it’s easy to go through that much ammunition in 2-4 days at the range.
6. The second amendment haters use the fact that black-powder weapons were used at the time of the constitution and bill of rights and therefore should be the only weapons that private citizens should be allowed to own. They conveniently ignore the fact that the government troops had the same weapons, yet they don’t want to limit the GOVERNMENT to those outdated weapons. They want us all to pretend that self-protection is possible with slingshots and sticks, against a heavily armed government. And they want us to defend ourselves with single-shot weapons limited to 10-round magazines.
7. The second amendment haters want to pretend that gun owners only need 1-3 rounds in order to successfully defend themselves against those who invade our homes, even though law enforcement is well aware that it is not often possible to stop a single intruder with 3 rounds. This while knowing full well that the intruders will have high-capacity magazines.
8. The second amendment haters - including the main stream media - refuse to acknowledge the THOUSANDS of lives that are saved every day by responsible gun owners. This would erode their position, so it must be ignored. They are so afraid of this truth that the information is excluded from mainstream media coverage, for the most part.
9. Second amendment haters like to talk as if they know what the founding fathers were thinking when they created the second amendment. Yet few - if any of them - have read the only book that I have seen to date that deals with precisely that issue: Stephen Holbrook’s’ Second Amendment. If they have read it - they completely ignore the truths presented therein. If they haven’t read it - they are grossly misinformed. Both scenarios are acceptable when you are more interested in an agenda than the truth.
10. Gun-free zones are like turkey-shoots to the criminally insane. Nearly all massacres take place in locations carefully selected by the shooters as being no-gun zones.
11. Politicians all have ‘round-the-clock protection (by gun-carriers). I’ve read that Diane Feinstein, a California politician who crusades against gun ownership, has a permit to carry a handgun. The laws she wants to pass are for US, not her and her kind. This is hypocrisy at it’s’ worst. Who should be protected above all others: our children or our politicians and bankers?

posted by: ConnVoter | September 11, 2015  4:32pm

Jason, you ran on this platform and got blasted.  Wasn’t that enough of a clue that you’re on the wrong side of the issue?

I’m sure you’ll be chumming up to every single Democratic politician with the hypocritical guts to show up if and when the Coltsville Project finally becomes a National Park.  Given the impotence of our Congressional delegation, that could take decades, however.

posted by: TheGreatPazuzu | September 11, 2015  5:49pm

“Whatever it takes” means setting a standard and cleaning house.”

Could not have said this better myself.

What ever it takes to clean house of the clowns like “Dick” Blumenthal, Dan Malloy, and that other disgrace Chris Murphy.  Vote these bums out of office.  Start over.  Flush the toilet.

Clean house.  Indeed, words to live by.  Thank you for them Mr. Paul..

posted by: ACR | September 11, 2015  7:04pm

ACR

..the NRA has launched vicious attacks against every Democratic presidential nominee and president, every year, every time, without fail. As of late, the group has even begun to turn on Democrats who vote its way. U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor of Arkansas voted against Manchin-Toomey and the NRA still endorsed against him. He is now former U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor.

The NRA isn’t always right; however those that seek to desecrate the Constitution are always wrong.

posted by: Biff Winnetka | September 11, 2015  7:20pm

Mr. Jason Paul is wise to publish his Op-Ed behind the safety of Connecticut’s borders.

In many states his views would be rightly mocked. And in others his personal safety would be at great risk.

Thanks for publishing another laugher from “Cocoon Connecticut”.

posted by: shinningstars122 | September 12, 2015  6:21am

shinningstars122

I agree with many points in the   piece and honestly this approach of business as usual is nothing new in Washington.

As it is very difficult for any politician of the same party to even offer constructive criticism of a collegue.

The NRA has worked hard to make themselves the poster child of “freedom” and ” liberty” and people have taken the bait hook, line and sinker. Whoever is their PR firm I am very sure they are very happy, and quite wealthy, as a result of these efforts.

I am sure some of these very same folks will be running some Presidential campaign as well.

The sad irony is that even when you cite the clear facts of how many people are shot and murdered in our country each day, including the increasing numbers of police officers, as well as the people who commit suicide with a gun; sadly a former work colleague of mine took his own life with a gun this past summer, people can still rationalize and ignore the facts on the ground and not making one or any changes to any national gun law.

It is illogical to not think this issue is not a major public health concern in our country.

@Greg it is very easy to find the stats you think are not out there.

You can start on this well know site.

posted by: Fisherman | September 12, 2015  10:06am

The young Mr. Paul would do well to take note of Hartford; capitol of a state with the toughest gun laws in the country; and yet is NUMBER ONE in New England for gun violence.

In retrospect, NO ONE (including Democrats) believes the emotional (rather than logical)  response from state leaders following Sandy Hook had much value. It simply penalized the law-abiding owners. 

Our state’s emotional rather than logical response did nothing but strengthen NRA’s argument; and drove many, who would not have otherwise, to purchase firearms en masse. Mr. Paul should take a look at the sales figures from the gun manufacturers.

Lastly, Mr. Paul needs to understand that no one can LEGALLY purchase a firearm NOW in the State of Connecticut without the blessing of the Department of Public Safety.

posted by: oldtimer | September 12, 2015  10:11am

Be honest Mr. Paul… you and your ilk are not concerned with “gun safety”, your real agenda is to confiscate all guns and ban them entirely. Check your history book Mr. Paul, see what the results were/are when the citizenry of a country no longer had/has the right to bear arms.

posted by: Scratch | September 12, 2015  12:03pm

“Although there is room to negotiate over what the solution should be, the NRA should never be in the room. “Whatever It Takes” mean ostracizing the NRA once and for all.”

And therein lies the joke of all this. ““Whatever It Takes”...so long as we don’t have to talk to or acknowledge the NRA.”

There is really only one way that gun control legislation gets passed on the Federal level, and that is with the oversight and assistence of the NRA (as was done with the Brady Bill/NIC System). Gun Control groups simply do not have the power or the voting support to pass their wishlist of legislation.  And yet, it isn’t that it would be impossible to pass it…it’s just that they’d have to do something so terrible, so repugnant, that they can’t even wrap their minds around it.  They’d have to sit down across the table from the NRA, and say “This is what we want.  What is it that *you* want in order to make some of this happen?”

No.  No the very thought of having to tolerate those awful gun-toting “rednecks” and acknowledge their concerns is too much to stomach.  Better to have no gun control legislation at all than have to do that.  Better to go on living in an fantasy world where they have the have the power to punish the NRA and shun them without penalty, even if in the real world it translates to wasted energy and political stagnation, than to meet face to face with the enemy and settle on a middle ground.  “Whatever It Takes” bedamned, anything but THAT!

posted by: Truth_To_Power | September 12, 2015  5:08pm

Now that the CT News Junkie editors have decided yet again to reject a comment from me, I hope they understand that this is the primary reason why I have not - and will not - subscribe to this publication. Worse than having a comment deemed unacceptable even though it does not conflict with the ‘rules’, is the frustration and disappointment that one has PAID for such a privilege by subscribing. Adding insult to injury is seeing other posts get printed even though they contain personal attacks, insults, or patronizing remarks that might be found objectionable by many readers.

I’ve actually had to cancel a long-time subscription before another publication was ‘persuaded’ to halt the practice of reviewing each and every submission through the prism of very subjective guidelines. If they don’t now appreciate the time and effort saved compared to that required for their former unreasonable ‘censorship’ practices, it’s probable that they are not fully grasping the subsequent financial benefits either.

Finally, few things discourage timely and lively debate more than delays in printing those comments that ARE deemed ‘acceptable’. Encouraging visitors to your website to ‘linger’ is a no brainer, in my opinion.
I can’t wait for the next lengthy, repetitive post from Politjoe or some other favored writer, to drive this latest rejection home.

posted by: kiernanmc | September 12, 2015  8:09pm

kiernanmc

“In many states his views would be rightly mocked. And in others his personal safety would be at great risk.”

Sadly, Jason has personal experience with the violent rhetoric and personal attacks employed by NRA supporters.  Biff Winnetka, your seeming delight at the willingness of gun nuts to threaten and physically attack those who disagree with them speaks volumes about you.

posted by: Biff Winnetka | September 12, 2015  10:51pm

CT is like a little tea cup poodle that thinks it is a German Shepard.
Such a silly, insignificant state. 
And now the weather is about to turn crappy for the next six months.
Time to leave for Florida before I hit day 183 at the old homestead.
Can’t wait to go empty some high capacity mags in a more sane state.

posted by: Clean Agent | September 13, 2015  6:58am

@Greg…you nailed it. The whole “gun control” to “gun safety” rebranding sounds so stupid. When I hear someone use “gun safety” when they actually mean “gun control,” I automatically know one of two things to be true. 1) I am speaking to a Democrat or, 2) I just met a gun control neophyte. Usually both are true.

Mr. Paul, to learn about “Gun Safety,” go to WWW.NRA.ORG and there you will find the world’s foremost authority. The membership fee is well worth it. Personally, I recommend just signing up for a Lifetime membership. You will learn that there are over 5 Million NRA members and Ted Nugent is just one. I am unclear on the other (unnamed) NRA board member you mention in your op-ed. Naming names, helps readers.

You would be wise to learn that “magazines” do not fire bullets. Magazines are just boxes with a spring inside. Nothing scary, just a box.

Jason, if gun control is something that you are going to debate in the future, you will no doubt use the phrase “as compared to other ‘developed’ nations, the US has blah blah blah.” (You may use “developed” or “industrialized” interchangeably) Remember a few things when making that argument.  1) The U.S.has the 2nd amendment to our Constitution. 2) We have 5 times the population of the UK. Five times the population of France. We have 31 times the population of Sweden…..get the picture?

We have a population and gang/drug problem closer to that of Brazil than any other nation. It could be argued that the U.S. is worse than Brazil because we have an extra 100+ Million people spread out over a much larger harder to police landmass. We also let pretty much anyone just walk into the country.

For a more accurate picture than France,England or Sweden of what the gun control utopia would look like if implemented in the U.S. read what has happened in Brazil since 2004 when they imposed the strict gun control most Democrats would like to see here. This happens to be the same year our bogus “assault weapons” ban ended.
Here is a link: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-32747175

Careful what you wish for, you just may get it….......

posted by: ACR | September 13, 2015  12:31pm

ACR

Difficult to make the NRA appear to be a bunch of toothless hay-seeds.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=HqhyWd0ZqNs

posted by: Biff Winnetka | September 13, 2015  8:18pm

@ kiernanmc wrote:

“Biff Winnetka, your seeming delight at the willingness of gun nuts to threaten and physically attack those who disagree with THEM (Emphasis added) speaks volumes about you.”

No “delight” sir.  You missed the point.  Perhaps your youth or ideology, or both, blinds you.

My point was simply that in many other states, most states actually, the author’s views would be rightly viewed as unconstitutional.  People in CT naively believe their progressive gun control views are shared in other states.  That is emphatically NOT the case in most states.

Attempting to export Cocoon Connecticut’s silly and unconstitutional gun laws to other states WILL meet with resistance.  The manner in which that resistance manifests itself could simply be a mocking Op-Ed, or willing disobedience, or armed resistance.  To beleive otherwise is supremely naive.  Have you never spent any time in Montana, Alaska, Texas, Florida….???

People in other, braver, states WILL NOT be voluntarily, or forcefully, disarmed by politicians trying to score points with the electorate after a tragedy, or Social Justice Warriors like the author trying to score points with the politicians.  You need to get out of CT more and experience the rest of the country’s culture.
These people will not be disarmed nor will they take kindly to being labeled as felons for maintaining their 2nd Amendment rights.
Get that through your noggin before you are complicit in starting something nobody wants.

So in summary, it’s not about “Those who disagree with them”.  It’s about responsible, law abiding gun owners who WILL stand up and push back against constitutional bullies like attorney Jason Paul.

And just as an intellectual exercise…have you or Attorney Jason Paul given any serious thought to WHY, after two years on the books, CT Public Law 13-3 HAS NOT BEEN ENFORCED???  The level of non-compliance with the “Sandy Hook Law” is quite high. CT politicians and law enforcement KNOW that any attempt to enforce the law on those not in compliance in CT would be U-G-L-Y.  And that’s in CONNECTICUT!.  Imagine the level of ugliness if Connecticut’s laws were simply PROPOSED in Texas!

posted by: Greg | September 14, 2015  8:48am

SS: Thank you for at least posting a link.  Problem is, you nor the author nor Senator Murphy want to acknowledge the following as I outlined in my initial screed:

- Violent crime at a 40 year low
- The federal AWB that expired in 2004 was shown by the DOJ to have zero impact on crime, despite rhetoric otherwise.
- There is no correlation between states with lax gun laws and violent/gun crime despite those who argue otherwise. At best, there are mixed results when looking at the data: VT/NH/UT/ME lax with very little gun violence compared to MA/CT with also low rates of gun violence.  Correlations don’t hold.
- Moms Demand/Anytown’s jihad in VT a few months back on background checks failed miserably.  VT is the safest state in the nation with near zero state level gun laws and near zero gun violence.  CT may be the bluest state, but VT is by far the most liberal and even there Bloomberg’s operatives couldn’t gain traction.  Statistics fail.

The national trends are of decreasing violence with a general loosening of gun laws nationwide.  Am I wrong here?

And then the irony in all of these debates is when POTUS or Sen Murphy say “weapons of war should not be on our streets” (“assault weapons”) yet both don’t seem to have a problem arming civil police forces with military hardware up to and including assault rifles and then also arming rebel factions the world over with weapons already banned for US citizens. 

You and I will never agree, and that’s OK…this is America after all.  Funny though, the Brady Campaign was very visible post Sandy Hook but oddly quiet these days with the bloodshed in Hartford this year.  Guess anti-gun folks only really care when gun violence hits home in affluent, white suburbia.

posted by: Nutmeg87 | September 14, 2015  11:05am

This is such a silly piece…  Surprised CT News Junkie cant get any better than this?

To rant on about the NRA, this guy misses the point why the NRA is so powerful…  Its NOT the money…  Billionnaire (+$27Billion NW) Bloomberg far outspends the NRA…  The NRA has just a small fraction of his wealth…

The NRA will aways trump Bloombergs crusade simply because of the NRA’s grass-roots support & the overwhelming support of the 2nd Amendment by AMERICANS from coast-to-coast. Majority of treasury is from individuals sending in their $20 annual fee.

Even the current PEW reserach polls show AMERICANS leaning sympathetic to 2nd Amendment.  What planet are theses guys from?  Sen Murphy is such a non-factor in Wash and only a state like CT could vote guys like him & Malloy into office… 

Why would you cite CT as any example ?  Heres a state that ranks 1st in residents wishing to leave…  almost 1st in Highest Debt-per-Capita resident…  almost last in affordability…  almost last in employment growth…

How about the embarrassment on how many resident gun owners actually registered their weapons?  A small fraction based on purchase records.  Whats accomplished?  Are you going to go door-to-door while criminals run rampant? But no…  your guys now want to shorted sentences because prison overcrowding…  nice.

posted by: Clean Agent | September 14, 2015  3:31pm

@shiningstars…..FYI the “Well known site” that you linked in your comment is historically the MOST BIASED anti-gun group in the country. Bloomberg and his Moms in Everytown are newcomers to this game. I believe the data that Greg wanted to see was maybe something from a little more independent and unbiased source.

posted by: shinningstars122 | September 14, 2015  8:43pm

shinningstars122

@Cleanagent that data is not biased its from the FBI and other law enforcement sources. It is cited if you even bothered to dig down into it.

@Biff this will turn your lame brain reasoning on its head. As the majority of the deadliest states in the US are in the south coincidentally with the most ” freedom” loving gun laws in the country.

You gun folks love to talk about liberty and freedom but how about freedom and liberty from gun violence?

That is the freedom the majority of Americans enjoy every day and no thanks one bit to the NRA for that one.

posted by: Shortimer52 | September 15, 2015  9:22am

Another hit piece on the NRA? I’m not fan of the NRA but I think we can all agree that the organization and members are not going any where. It’s articles like this that are swelling the NRA membership numbers. I once questioned the NRA motive but constant on going articles like this have me changing my mind as I do research.

Articles like this are becoming more common and writers presume the general American public are too stupid to see what its really about. Which in turn dose nothing to help the anti gun cause.

Also if you call the NRA a extreme group then you must call anti gun groups extreme. It would only be fair. But that’s not why this article was   written. Let’s take a step back and remember who was calling for the deaths of NRA members after Sandy Hook and who still calling for the same to this date.

Cloaking gun control as “Gun Safety” while not actually providing any kind of safety programs is nothing more then trying to push an agenda. If I remember correctly the NRA and the National Shooting Sports Foundation has safety programs in place. A quick search shows that the National Shooting Sports Foundation has a gun lock give away program that once was partially funded by the government until 2009. I guess real “Gun Safety” is not that big of an issue.

Keep in mind there is a difference between “Gun Safety” and a agenda. Making gun owners the villain and gun control advocates the hero really dose nothing to help the anti gun cause.

posted by: Greg | September 15, 2015  9:40am

SS: The states with the most “freedom loving gun laws” are not in the south, their our happy, safe, gun violence free neighbors to the north- NH and especially VT. 

Both have strong gun cultures, both have unrestricted open carry (NH needs a permit for concealed, VT no permit whatsoever for resident or nonresident), both have very few if no state restrictions on Class 3/NFA ownership.

Both have the lowest violent crime/gun crime/homicide rates in the nation.

Not the south, and certainly not “red states”.

posted by: dano860 | September 15, 2015  9:52am

The N.R.A. isn’t the horrible bogey man that many perceive it to be. They have about 4M members, the F.B.I. and the Geneva Small Arms Survey believes that there’s about 350 M firearms in the country. Their surveys estimate that the average firearms owner has 4 per firearms each. Therefore there should be 87.5 M firearms owners in the country, 4 M of which belong to the N.R.A. leaving 83.5 M non- members.
My guess is that more of us have been directly affected by losing someone to cancer or a car accident than by a firearm incident. Automobile accidents account for more deaths than all firearm involved incidents.
Pulling the chair out from under anyone that deserves a seat at the table is not how anything will be resolved. That seems to fit the elitist attitude and attitude that is prevalent in our micro state of Connecticut.
Firearms are not the problem, they are a tool. Remove that tool and the sick among us just get another one. Think back to the Boston Marathon. Far more scary than a single firearm.

posted by: RicB | September 15, 2015  11:00am

This op-ed is so silly it borders on the ridiculous. The truth is that most violent crimes committed with guns are done so with ILLEGAL guns and a vast majority of those crimes are committed in urban areas. These are irrefutable facts and are not an indication of anything related to racial bias. Passing Gun Safety (gun control)laws do not work when most of the guns used in violent crimes are not purchased or obtained legally. Most legal gun owners are not committing violent crimes, that is a fact. Gun control advocates have no clue of the real issues in every urban area of our country, or do not want to acknowledge these facts due to their agenda. Educate, create good jobs, stop all the liberal Democrat freebies and gun control will control itself.

posted by: UpsideDown | September 15, 2015  5:11pm

I got great satisfaction when Mr. Paul showed up in Colchester advocating his naive and prejudiced position on guns and told him to move-on.

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