Politicizing a Tragedy

posted at 4:31 pm on June 10, 2014 by Noah Rothman

We hear a lot these days about conservatives politicizing tragedy.

In May, former White House Press Sec. Jay Carney called the formation of the Benghazi select committee “an attempt by Republicans to politicize a tragedy.” Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton echoed the charge on ABC on Monday, attacking Republicans for “politicizing this at the expense of four dead Americans.” Retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal expressed dismay over the “politicizing” of the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl; an attack for which he earned high praise from liberal columnist E.J. Dionne.

The instinct among the White House’s supporters to accuse the opposition of being political actors is not a new one. Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) joined MSNBC host Al Sharpton for a recent segment where both accused the GOP of politicizing the VA scandal, while simultaneously defending the care vets receive at VA facilities as “top notch.” Republicans were criticized from a number of sources for politicizing the shooting death of Florida teen Trayvon Martin. “People have to stop politicizing it,” said then Deputy Campaign Manager for President Barack Obama, Stephanie Cutter.

But for all their competence at both recognizing and shaming the politicization of tragic events, there is one sadly recurrent element of American life that liberals appear to believe not only merits politicization but demands it: gun violence.

“There is no such thing as ‘politicizing’ tragedy,” read an honest post from Gawker’s Max Read in the wake of the 2012 Aurora theater shooting. “You cannot ‘politicize’ a tragedy because the tragedy is already political. When you talk about the tragedy you’re already talking about politics.”

His sentiments were echoed by Michael Grunwald who, writing in Time Magazine, articulated a slightly more nuanced view on the inevitability of politics invading tragic moments. “I feel terrible about what happened in that movie theater, and I’m agnostic about gun control, but there is nothing wrong with politicizing tragedy,” he wrote. “It’s telling that the people who get paid to analyze politics recoil at the notion that its practitioners should connect it to real-life pain.”

Since 2012, an annus horribilis in terms of the number of high profile mass shootings, politicizing gun violence has become a grim and obligatory rite on the left. As an expression of tribal loyalty, progressives conveying their devotion to the cause of stricter gun laws in the wake of a shooting has become as reflexive as a salute.

Perhaps that explains why, even while a high school shooting in Oregon was ongoing on Tuesday, MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell was tasked with interviewing Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America founder Shannon Watts.

“It’s not like we don’t have to control to stop it. We do,” Watts insisted as the active shooting situation in Oregon unfolded. “We have to act.”

When asked what proposal she would back to “stop” shootings like these, Watts replied by attacking Congress for “protecting the gun lobbyists” rather than their constituents.

“It is time to vote to close the background check loophole,” she declared. “We need the help of business people, of members of Congress, of legislators, but most of all to people listening to your show right now. You can’t wait to act.”

Watts could not have known how stricter background checks might have prevented this tragedy at the time of her avowal, because the identity of the gunman and the weapons used were still unknown. But she was not invited on the program for her policy acumen. She was there to reaffirm her and the audience’s fealty to a cause.

Just about an hour later, MSNBC’s Ronan Farrow invited The Daily Beast’s Cliff Schechter on his program to refine the villain in this episode from generic members of Congress to Republican members of Congress and the National Rifle Association.

“We know how to stop this,” Schechter insisted. He cited Australia’s strict 1996 gun laws as an example of how to reduce gun-related homicides, a causal link that scholars inconveniently continue to debate.

“We’ve got kids walking around either who are mentally troubled,” Schechter continued. “We’ve got right wing — people with far-right wing politics like those who shot two police officers in Las Vegas, execution style, and left a Nazi swastika and a ‘Don’t Tread on Me’ flag on them, and others like that who have easy access to guns.”

Schechter and Farrow proceeded to define for the audience how they can become politically involved in an effort to agitate for new gun laws. Among the advocacy groups Schechter cited as a example of a powerful anti-gun organization was Moms Demand Action, founded by our previous guest, Shannon Watts. It’s funny how that works.

The lamentable reality is that politicizing events which capture the nation’s attention can also decalcify American politics and pave the way for sweeping reforms impossible in the absence of tragedy. The right knows it. The left apparently knows it, too. Politicizing tragedy, while distasteful, is a small price to pay if you are convinced the ends justify the means.

We can, however, dispense with the mock indignation over Republicans exclusively politicizing tragedy. The implicit claim to moral superiority in that charge is wholly unearned.


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OK, trolls, I’m on a roll today. Let’s engage. (Sorry, Midas.)

Explain to me what you would do to reduce or eliminate gun crime in the US.

Be specific. Explain how your solutions would work.

Link to sources that we can all reference.

To harken back to another troll whom I engaged on an earlier thread — here are the rules:

*** Lay all of your cards on the table, face-up. (Don’t ask me to explain that analogy.) If your ultimate solution is confiscation, say so. And defend your position.

*** If you post stupid/vapid/unrelated drivel, expect to be used for verbal target practice. (Don’t interpret this as a threat of gun violence.)

Your jury is the audience here at HotAir: the smartest, sharpest and fairest bunch in this neck of the Internet.

Now let’s see who are the cowards.

Ready? Set? Begin.

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:02 PM

Here’s a start:

Requiring gun safes and trigger locks (preferably electronic so only you can use your gun); requiring states to promptly report to the National Background Check System all applicable criminal convictions and mental health issues that would need to be reported on Form 4473; expanding the list of reasons to be denied for a license to the use of certain prescription drugs and recent psychological counseling of certain types (and requiring those items to be reported to the states) and violent or similar statements on social media; requiring all sales to go through dealers; allowing a 72 hour period “cooling off” period for the National Background Check System to verify the information given by gun purchasers and to check for violent statements on social media; and requiring purchasers to renew licenses every 3 or so years (and to go through the same verification process;

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

No one likes the guy that tells the ending of the movie while you’re standing in line to see it. :)

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:21 PM

Spoiler alert?

They might add a magical twist of some sort for a surprise ending?

dentarthurdent on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

https://twitter.com/AP_Politics

AP Politics @AP_Politics · 35m

Obama says biggest frustration has been failure to act to stop mass shootings, reports @joshledermanAP http://apne.ws/1hMMUlZ

canopfor on June 10, 2014 at 6:28 PM

Gun owners, instead of repeating “guns don’t kill people, people kill people, ” would be better served to adopt a middle way, and show their utmost reasonableness to stave off much more restrictive gun control regimes.

bobs1196 on June 10, 2014 at 6:12 PM

What is a “middle ground?” What is “utmost reasonableness?”

Are you saying that gun owners should propose and support passage of restrictions on their firearms, in order to avoid even more restrictive proposals? What kinds of “middle way” measures do you mean?

Can you describe some gun laws that you’d consider “reasonable?”

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:28 PM

GunPolicy.org is hosted by the Sydney School of Public Health, the University of Sydney. The School provides internationally recognised leadership in public health by advancing and disseminating knowledge — in this case, supporting global efforts to prevent gun injury.

With its partners and contributors, GunPolicy.org promotes the public health model of firearm injury prevention, as adopted by the World Health Organisation’s Global Campaign for Violence Prevention and the United Nations Programme of Action on small arms.

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:13 PM

It is. Do you doubt their numbers?

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:28 PM

Spoiler alert?

They might add a magical twist of some sort for a surprise ending?

dentarthurdent on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

No; it’s just that your rhetorical questions are (or should be) the logical end result of our discussion. IOW “you make too much sense.”
:)

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:31 PM

canopfor on June 10, 2014 at 5:18 PM

HAHAHAHAHA Loser! Software can’t be hacked, just ask Target Corp.

Bishop on June 10, 2014 at 5:25 PM

Bishop: D*mmit Bishop, must you resort to facts, haha:0

canopfor on June 10, 2014 at 6:31 PM

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:02 PM

Here’s a start:

Requiring gun safes and trigger locks (preferably electronic so only you can use your gun); requiring states to promptly report to the National Background Check System all applicable criminal convictions and mental health issues that would need to be reported on Form 4473; expanding the list of reasons to be denied for a license to the use of certain prescription drugs and recent psychological counseling of certain types (and requiring those items to be reported to the states) and violent or similar statements on social media; requiring all sales to go through dealers; allowing a 72 hour period “cooling off” period for the National Background Check System to verify the information given by gun purchasers and to check for violent statements on social media; and requiring purchasers to renew licenses every 3 or so years (and to go through the same verification process;

jimbo 56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

And you propose paying for all of this how, exactly?

Del Dolemonte on June 10, 2014 at 6:32 PM

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

What part of “shall not be infringed” is difficult to understand?

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:33 PM

D*mn LibTwits,..they go from…Politicizing,..

..to….Prejudice:

Boy Scouts ban on gay scouts, scout leaders

15m
Attorney General Eric Holder slams Boy Scouts over gay Scoutmaster ban, calling it ‘a relic of an age of prejudice’ – @NBCNews
Read more on nbcnews.com

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/u-s-attorney-general-slams-boy-scouts-over-gay-scoutmaster-n127746

canopfor on June 10, 2014 at 6:34 PM

And you propose paying for all of this how, exactly?

Del Dolemonte on June 10, 2014 at 6:32 PM

Taxes on guns and ammos (the gun safes and trigger locks would be the owner’s responsibility; much of this other stuff makes use of existing processes).

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:34 PM

GunPolicy.org is hosted by the Sydney School of Public Health,
Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:13 PM

It is. Do you doubt their numbers?

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:28 PM

I didn’t look at them closely, but it seems that they use some US Gov’t sources.

You wouldn’t have a problem with me quoting NRA.org as a source, would you? Or Gun Owners of America? Or Second Amendment Foundation?

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:35 PM

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

What part of “shall not be infringed” is difficult to understand?

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:33 PM

What part of the Supreme Court cases interpreting “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” is difficult to understand.

It’s not an unlimited right and it ties back to the militia use.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:36 PM

And you propose paying for all of this how, exactly?

Del Dolemonte on June 10, 2014 at 6:32 PM

Not to mention how many rights other than to keep and bear arms are violated in his proposal.

What is it about law abiding citizens that scares these people?

CurtZHP on June 10, 2014 at 6:36 PM

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:08 PM

Pat yourself on the back.You’ve been Rogerb’ed.You did all of that work looking up those numbers.You should feel better now.Have a cookie.

docflash on June 10, 2014 at 6:36 PM

I didn’t look at them closely, but it seems that they use some US Gov’t sources.

You wouldn’t have a problem with me quoting NRA.org as a source, would you? Or Gun Owners of America? Or Second Amendment Foundation?

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:35 PM

If you have sources that tie back to US Gov’t sources and footnote where the underlying stats are found, no.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:37 PM

Here’s a start:

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

Cut to the chase, please — where would you end?

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:37 PM

Here’s a start:

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

Cut to the chase, please — where would you end?

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 6:37 PM

I’d want to see if these measures worked before proposing anything else.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:38 PM

As far as these random heinous gun crimes. I don’t mean to be political but we really do need to see their tox reports. Marijuana makes people act without conscience. I’d estimate it’s somewhere around 90% are high on marijuna. You can’t ban guns, but there is no constitutional right to erase your conscience with a weed.

Buddahpundit on June 10, 2014 at 6:22 PM

The two shooters were meth heads. That makes people capable of horrific crimes.

In the state O’bama claims to have been born in, a dude high on meth threw his 23 month old son off an overpass onto a freeway, where the kid was immediately hit and killed by a 2 tom delivery truck.

Never heard of people high on pot committing violent crime. Got any stats to prove your claim?

Del Dolemonte on June 10, 2014 at 6:38 PM

I’m waiting for the troll to propose how he intends to compel criminals to obey this new stack of rules.

CurtZHP on June 10, 2014 at 6:39 PM

The Oregon school shooting was 2 young men.One might have been the rival of the other for a girl or a guy.We don’t have the facts yet.

docflash on June 10, 2014 at 6:39 PM

And you propose paying for all of this how, exactly?
Del Dolemonte on June 10, 2014 at 6:32 PM

That’s irrelevant. What if he came up with a great way to pay for it? That’s not bloody likely, but would you then concede the point?

None of the idiotic suggestions he makes would do anything to lessen gun violence.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:40 PM

None of the idiotic suggestions he makes would do anything to lessen gun violence.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:40 PM

Everything he suggests is aimed squarely at law-abiding gun owners/buyers.

What is it about them that makes these people nervous?

CurtZHP on June 10, 2014 at 6:42 PM

I have no problem, none, with there being no gun laws. None. Armed miscreants aren’t the problem, unarmed citizens are the problem that gives armed miscreants an advantage they happily exploit whenever they think they can.

Why are there so many unarmed citizens? They’d rather risk being a crime victim than enduring the hassle of being caught packing illegally. Guns control kills. Gun control causes crime. Gun control -any means or attempt to deprive me of my rights to defend myself however I see fit- is evil.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:43 PM

What part of the Supreme Court cases interpreting “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” is difficult to understand.

It’s not an unlimited right and it ties back to the militia use.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:36 PM

Um, no. In both Heller and McDonald, the Court held that there was an INDIVIDUAL right to bear arms.

Furthermore, a militia was ALL people, according to the Founders, not some sort of National Guard.

The Founders in their own words.

Here are two, but they are from authors of the Second Amendment:

‘The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. A well regulated militia, composed of the body of people, trained in arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country.’

- James Madison

‘I ask, Sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.’

- George Mason, during Virginia’s Convention to Ratify the Constitution, 1788

Resist We Much on June 10, 2014 at 6:44 PM

And you propose paying for all of this how, exactly?

Del Dolemonte on June 10, 2014 at 6:32 PM

Taxes

jimbo 56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:34 PM

I’ll ask the question again, this time in English. How will you pay for all of this stuff?

Face it, the government you love so much has been enacting and passing gun control laws for 80 years now (FDR signed the National Firearms Act into law in 1934). And yet despite nearly a century of passing more laws and throwing more tax money at them, there is absolutely no proof that increased gun regulation lowers crime.

Del Dolemonte on June 10, 2014 at 6:48 PM

I’m stunned,…………………..REALLY!!!!!!!:

Mark Knoller @markknoller · 1m

Each of the network evening newscasts leading tonight with the Oregon school shootings today.

canopfor on June 10, 2014 at 6:48 PM

Requiring gun safes and trigger locks (preferably electronic so only you can use your gun);

How will that be enforced? Do you propose having the police search and inspect ALL houses to ensure everyone complies? How will you ensure the roughly 300 million existing guns are retrofitted with electronic controls?
BTW – my answer to that is he11 no!!

requiring states to promptly report to the National Background Check System all applicable criminal convictions and mental health issues that would need to be reported on Form 4473;

What makes you think they don’t already for criminal convictions?
Who determines which psychological conditions get reported in violation of HIPAA medical privacy laws?
Who pays for all of this?

expanding the list of reasons to be denied for a license to the use of certain prescription drugs and recent psychological counseling of certain types (and requiring those items to be reported to the states) and violent or similar statements on social media;

Which certain drugs? Who makes the decision as to which drugs get on the list? What kind of psychological counseling? Who decides if specific counseling has crossed the line?
Same questions regarding statements on social media. Also, how o you propose to rewrite the 1st Amendment to accomplish this?

requiring all sales to go through dealers;

Illegal sales will never go through dealers, how do you propose to force criminals to make their sales through licensed dealers?

allowing a 72 hour period “cooling off” period for the National Background Check System to verify the information given by gun purchasers and to check for violent statements on social media;

Bullshiite. First – see US Constitution – ENTIRE Bill of Rights. Second – How many people have committed crimes within 72 hours of legally buying a gun? Third – Who pays for the number of people required to do this in-depth investigation of EVERY person in the country who wants to buy a gun?
Fourth – Why do you hate women who may need to defend themselves from criminals or ex-husbands/boyfriends so much that you want to give their assailants/killers a 3 day guaranteed defenseless period?

and requiring purchasers to renew licenses every 3 or so years (and to go through the same verification process; jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

I don’t need a government approved license to own something guaranteed to me by the US Constitution.

dentarthurdent on June 10, 2014 at 6:49 PM

Um, no. In both Heller and McDonald, the Court held that there was an INDIVIDUAL right to bear arms.

Furthermore, a militia was ALL people, according to the Founders, not some sort of National Guard.

Resist We Much on June 10, 2014 at 6:44 PM

Agreed, but they limit the type of weapons to which the right applies to those used by the militia–those in common use at the time for lawful purposes.

Will be back in about 2 hours. Have to do something.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:49 PM

It’s not an unlimited right and it ties back to the militia use.
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:36 PM

It is unlimited. Why else does congress have authority to “grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water?”

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:51 PM

Requiring gun safes and trigger locks (preferably electronic so only you can use your gun);

Ah yes, the Home Invaders Protection Act.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:52 PM

Agreed, but they limit the type of weapons to which the right applies to those used by the militia–those in common use at the time for lawful purposes.

Will be back in about 2 hours. Have to do something.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:49 PM

Limit – no. But any tie to the militia means the people have a right to military type weapons.
Besides, NONE of what you proposed complies with that or even has anything to do with it, so you’re just throwing out a red herring.

dentarthurdent on June 10, 2014 at 6:55 PM

requiring states to promptly report to the National Background Check System all applicable criminal convictions and mental health issues that would need to be reported on Form 4473;

Because as everyone knows, criminals purchase the tools of their trade a local gun shops.

Plus, only a fraction of those who fail their background checks are prosecuted for attempting to buy guns when they should know that they are prohibited.

Of 80,000 people who were denied a firearm in 2012 due to a failed background check, only 44 were prosecuted.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:55 PM

expanding the list of reasons to be denied for a license to the use of certain prescription drugs and recent psychological counseling of certain types (and requiring those items to be reported to the states) and violent or similar statements on social media;

…but shall be infringed if someone seeks medical attention or exercises his 1st Amendment rights.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:56 PM

requiring all sales to go through dealers;

Comment would be superfluous.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:56 PM

Agreed, but they limit the type of weapons to which the right applies to those used by the militia–those in common use at the time for lawful purposes.

Will be back in about 2 hours. Have to do something.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:49 PM

Nope. The Court did not limit the right to bear arms to those in common usage when the Second Amendment was ratified. If they had, then that rule could be applied to all of the Bill of Rights. In other words, take the Fourth Amendment. You would have a right to be secure in your papers, home, and person, but what about your email? What about your files on your laptop? If the Court had imposed an ‘in common, lawful usage at the time of ratification’ rule, then your electronic documents would NOT be covered by the Fourth Amendment.

Resist We Much on June 10, 2014 at 6:57 PM

allowing a 72 hour period “cooling off” period for the National Background Check System to verify the information given by gun purchasers and to check for violent statements on social media;

Will the man who threatened to kill me be forced into a similar cooling off period? And he doubles down on his attack on the 1st Amendment.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:58 PM

expanding the list of reasons to be denied for a license to the use of certain prescription drugs and recent psychological counseling of certain types (and requiring those items to be reported to the states) and violent or similar statements on social media;

…but shall be infringed if someone seeks medical attention or exercises his 1st Amendment rights.

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:56 PM

Exactly. God help the new mother being treated for post-partum depression (a temporary condition) if she decides later to buy a gun to protect herself and her offspring.

CurtZHP on June 10, 2014 at 6:59 PM

Resist We Much on June 10, 2014 at 6:57 PM

Or the 1st – so we would not have free speech over computers, telephones, telegraphs, radios, TV…..

dentarthurdent on June 10, 2014 at 6:59 PM

and requiring purchasers to renew licenses every 3 or so years (and to go through the same verification process; jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

Licensed activities are illegal without the license. I find nothing in the 2nd Amendment that allows this. But you clowns could care less about the Bill of Rights except for the gay marriage and abortion clauses. Oh wait…

Akzed on June 10, 2014 at 6:59 PM

Quite simple actually. Liar, Coward, Cheat.

The hyphen is just to set off what I’m responding to. People in the past have said there wasn’t enough difference between the two, so I’ve tried to do better.

Jimbo3 on June 11, 2010 at 5:28 PM

http://hotair.com/archives/2010/06/10/mitch-daniels-we-need-a-truce-on-social-issues-to-concentrate-on-our-fiscal-crisis/comment-page-4/#comment-3627532

–Links of calls to boycott United Airlines because of the personal actions of its CEO. You are wrong, Press1foEngrish.

jim56 on April 3, 2014 at 5:59 PM

http://hotair.com/archives/2014/04/03/mozilla-ceo-resigns-after-uproar-over-his-opposition-to-gay-marriage/comment-page-3/#comment-7896086

Bmore on June 10, 2014 at 7:07 PM

Maniacs who commit mass murder with guns don’t obey laws prohibiting mass murder; more laws restricting guns aren’t going to slow them down, either.

These proposals to “do something” about “gun violence” make no sense except as a way to herd the law-abiding. And last time I checked, the law-abiding are not the problem here.

Aitch748 on June 10, 2014 at 7:08 PM

Bmore on June 10, 2014 at 7:07 PM

About time you got here. Hound this idiot until he’s gone please.

Judge_Dredd on June 10, 2014 at 7:11 PM

IMO, if Noah is going to take the politicizing-a-tragedy angle, I think it would have been better to focus on Democrat Representative Earl Blumenauer’s tweet and the reply tweet of disgust by Mr. Reynolds. IMO, focusing on Andrea Mitchell isn’t as compelling because she is a professional gossip just doing what professional gossips are paid to do, not an elected public servant.

Christien on June 10, 2014 at 7:14 PM

Will be back in about 2 hours. Have to do something.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:49 PM

Where’s everdiso and weedisgood?

*snicker*

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 7:16 PM

Another shooting. I always hope tragedy will inspire action. Simple common sense steps make difference. Start w/universal background checks

~Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Oregon)

Christien on June 10, 2014 at 7:24 PM

As Tlaloc pointed out, there are 7769 fewer accidental deaths from guns each year than those from AIDS, and at least 30,273 fewer annual injuries than those from new HIV infections.
 
http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/aids-hiv.htm
 
And all from the 37% of the U.S. population with guns (vs the less than 1/2 of 1% with HIV).
 
It really is incredible to realize that gun owners are that safe.
 
Thanks again for the perspective, Tlaloc.
 
rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 4:59 PM

 
How many of the AIDS and HIV deaths arise from forced sex or blood transfusions?
 
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 5:05 PM

 
Reading skills suffer when religious beliefs are threatened.
 
It’s incredible to realize gun owners are that safe, isn’t it jim56?
 
rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 5:38 PM

 
In 2011 in US, 851 accidental shooting deaths; 7,560 annual gun suicides (long gun and handgun); 6,251 handgun homicides (FBI) and 694 long gun homicides (FBI) and 73,880 non-fatal gun injuries. The CDC shows only about 1/6th the number of handgun suicides as the FBI does on average.
 
http://www.gunpolicy.org/firearms/region/united-states
 
In 2011, 49,723 new HIV cases in US and 8,369 AIDS deaths.
 
Using the FBI statistics, there were about 6,900 gun homicides in the US in 2011 vs. 8,369 AIDS deaths and there were about 150% more non-fatal gun injuries than HIV cases.
 
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:08 PM

 
Part of me almost hates doing this to you again. Look under my CDC link, btw. I gave you a hint.
 
I’m guessing you had to skip it because of your believe that the earth is only 6000 years old.

rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 7:33 PM

Uy, I am so sick of the politicization of this. “Liberals” are true vultures. All they want to do is stamp down on our freedoms. I am opposed to their entire way of thinking. And this is coming from someone who used to call himself a “liberal.”

WhatSlushfund on June 10, 2014 at 7:37 PM

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:08 PM

 
37% of the population of the U.S. has, or is in a household with, a gun.
 
http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/06/04/a-minority-of-americans-own-guns-but-just-how-many-is-unclear/
 
That’s 116,180,000 people in the U.S. with guns.
 
37% of the population.
 
So 116 million people and, as you helpfully posted
 

In 2011 in US, 851 accidental shooting deaths; 7,560 annual gun suicides (long gun and handgun); 6,251 handgun homicides (FBI) and 694 long gun homicides (FBI) and 73,880 non-fatal gun injuries.
 
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:08 PM

 
(Thanks for your help, btw)
 
37% of the population (one hundred and sixteen million people) and still only 8000 accidental deaths and homicides each year, and fewer than 74K injuries.
 
Sorry your faith wouldn’t let you see how the numbers work. Ready?

rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 7:38 PM

The dead kid today is a freshman soccer player.
How tragic. Honestly, I don’t know how people are sending their kids to school. I know tragedies can happen anywhere and I’m not talking about colleges………….AND I do not think this has anything to do with guns.
We are not doing something right in public education. Maybe several things, and I’m pretty sure it begins with the touchy feely liberal bs that is pervasive.
Schools are not safe.

ORconservative on June 10, 2014 at 7:45 PM

37% of the population of the U.S. has, or is in a household with, a gun.

rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 7:38 PM

Or admitted to a surveyor that they owned guns?

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 7:48 PM

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:08 PM

 
There are 1,144,500 people in the U.S. with HIV.
 
http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/statistics/basics/ataglance.html
 
That’s substantially less than 1/2 of 1% of the U.S. population. Let’s write that again for those who have trouble with numbers:
 
Less than 1/2
 
of 1%
 
So less than one-half of one percent (and remember, gun owners are thirty seven percent of the population), and yet, as you helpfully posted
 

In 2011, 49,723 new HIV cases in US and 8,369 AIDS deaths.
 
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:08 PM

 
(Thanks for your help, btw)
 
Ready for the fun part?
 
Less than 1/2 of 1% of the U.S. population with HIV manages to exceed the 37%’s gun numbers by 573 extra dead.
 
Ready for the next bit?
 
That same <1/2 of 1% of the U.S. population manages to match fully 67% of the annual injury numbers (49,723/73,880) of the 116 million people with guns.
 
Thanks again for your help. You and Tlaloc have really done a great job, and I couldn't have done it without you. Well, you know what I mean. Not the math. I had to do that without you, of course.

rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 7:51 PM

A bit more fun:
 
If the “have HIV” population could figure out a way to be as safe as the “have gun” population they would’ve only lost 16,025 people to HIV/AIDS since 1981.
 
Sixteen thousand twenty-five.
 
FWIW, if the “have guns” population posed similar risks as the “have HIV” population there would’ve been 38 million gunfire deaths since 1982 vs. the actual 1 million.
 
It’s incredible to realize gun owners are that safe, isn’t it jim56?

rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 7:53 PM

Sorry to keep harping on this, but I’m just sitting here fuming about this crap, this MSNBC stuff. How could I have been so stupid? Liberals are truly evil people. I’ve been a gun owner since I was, I don’t know, maybe 18?

I have always been for freedom. I have always been against fascism. I’m just really kicking myself at the moment for having ever called myself a “liberal.” I guess I was just young and dumb and easily manipulated by the media and by the educational system. Not that that’s an excuse. I’m just really hating myself at the moment. These people are evil.

WhatSlushfund on June 10, 2014 at 8:01 PM

Nope. The Court did not limit the right to bear arms to those in common usage when the Second Amendment was ratified. If they had, then that rule could be applied to all of the Bill of Rights. In other words, take the Fourth Amendment. You would have a right to be secure in your papers, home, and person, but what about your email? What about your files on your laptop? If the Court had imposed an ‘in common, lawful usage at the time of ratification’ rule, then your electronic documents would NOT be covered by the Fourth Amendment.

Resist We Much on June 10, 2014 at 6:57 PM

I’m reading the Miller case and the later cases that cited Miller.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 8:39 PM

(Thanks for your help, btw)

37% of the population (one hundred and sixteen million people) and still only 8000 accidental deaths and homicides each year, and fewer than 74K injuries.

Sorry your faith wouldn’t let you see how the numbers work. Ready?

rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 7:38 PM

Rogerb, from the Gallup poll, it looks like about 22% of the US actually has a gun, so that would be closer to 80 million.

And the comparison should be the percentage of people who have had unsafe hetro/homo sex at any time, or received blood transfusions.

From at least one survey I found, about 33% of the sample admitted to having had unsafe sex practices at least once, across all age groups. http://www.nbcnews.com/id/9574299/ns/health-sexual_health/t/many-us-playing-risky-game-sex/#.U5epn_ldWCk.

There are about 19 million new STD cases annually in the US, so that percentage doesn’t seem too far off: http://www.cdc.gov/std/stats10/trends.htm And about 1/2 of the US will catch a STD during their lifetime: http://www.ashasexualhealth.org/std-sti/std-statistics.html

About 2% of the US gets blood transfusions annually.

So, about 100-150 million people have a chance to catch HIV/AIDS during their lifetime, yet only 49,000 new HIV cases and 8,400 AIDS deaths annually. Versus about 80 million people with guns and 74,000 injuries and 8,000 deaths annually.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 9:09 PM

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/06/04/a-minority-of-americans-own-guns-but-just-how-many-is-unclear/
 
37% of the population (one hundred and sixteen million people) and still only 8000 accidental deaths and homicides each year, and fewer than 74K injuries.
 
Sorry your faith wouldn’t let you see how the numbers work. Ready?
 
rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 7:38 PM

 
Rogerb, from the Gallup poll, it looks like about 22% of the US actually has a gun, so that would be closer to 80 million.
 
And the comparison should be the percentage of people who have had unsafe hetro/homo sex at any time, or received blood transfusions.

 
Really? So are we only going to count the guns that are used in violent crimes or accidental shootings as well and not the actual verified numbers? That would help your position even more, right?
 
100% of all guns everywhere kill people!!!
 

From at least one survey I found, about 33% of the sample admitted to having had unsafe sex practices at least once, across all age groups. http://www.nbcnews.com/id/9574299/ns/health-sexual_health/t/many-us-playing-risky-game-sex/#.U5epn_ldWCk.
 
There are about 19 million new STD cases annually in the US, so that percentage doesn’t seem too far off: http://www.cdc.gov/std/stats10/trends.htm And about 1/2 of the US will catch a STD during their lifetime: http://www.ashasexualhealth.org/std-sti/std-statistics.html
 
About 2% of the US gets blood transfusions annually.
 
So, about 100-150 million people have a chance to catch HIV/AIDS during their lifetime,

 
Can you see where those aren’t equal terms to
 

yet only 49,000 new HIV cases and 8,400 AIDS deaths annually. Versus about 80 million people with guns and 74,000 injuries and 8,000 deaths annually.
 
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 9:09 PM

 
Yikes. You have no concept of math at all, do you?
 
Regardless, “have a chance” is what you want to attempt to argue instead of actual verifiable data from the CDC?
 
Fine. How many people “have a chance” to get shot during their lifetime? It’s your position, and both sides of the equation have to be in equal terms.
 
Go ahead, jim56. Tell us.

rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 9:26 PM

I’m reading the Miller case and the later cases that cited Miller.

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 8:39 PM

Don’t worry about Miller. Read Heller and McDonald. They are the most recent and controlling.

Resist We Much on June 10, 2014 at 9:27 PM

Lolz! Timing is impeccable. ; )

Bmore on June 10, 2014 at 9:50 PM

jim56, I’ll check back in tomorrow, but let us know if you prefer dividing your 150 million (with an M) lifetime HIVers by 78.7
 
http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/life-expectancy.htm
 
to get 1.9 million annually for HIV or if you’d rather multiply your 80 million by it to get 6.3 billion (with a B) lifetime for the guns.
 
They’re your numbers, so let us know which you prefer.
 
Shame it still works out exactly as I’d initially posted. Math is neat that way, isn’t it?

rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 10:07 PM

: )

Bmore on June 10, 2014 at 10:17 PM

Here are some statistics gathered by the Second Amendment Foundation (I’ve added emphasis on a couple of points relevant to the discussion)

There are over 250 million privately owned firearms in the United States according to FBI estimates.

There are an estimated 65 million handguns in private circulation in the United States. (FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, 9/1997) [Pretty old stats; many more are likely in circulation in 2014 considering the accelerated rate of sales since 2009 - coincidentally -- A]

The fastest growing group of gun owners is women, according to Gary Kleck in Targeting Guns.

Firearms are used defensively roughly 2.5 million times per year, more than four times as many as criminal uses. This amounts to 2,575 lives protected for every life lost to a gun (Targeting Guns).

The accidental firearm death rate is at its lowest point since records were started nearly 100 years ago according to Injury Facts 2000 from the National Safety Council.

Motor-vehicle accidents, drowning, suffocation, and fires each kill more children under the age of fifteen than do firearms.

Less than one handgun in 6,500 is ever used in a homicide.

Alien on June 10, 2014 at 10:33 PM

So, about 100-150 million people have a chance to catch HIV/AIDS during their lifetime,…Versus about 80 million people with guns and 74,000 injuries and 8,000 deaths annually.
 
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 9:09 PM

 
Did you ever figure out how many of the 314,000,000 people in the U.S. have a chance to get shot during their lifetime, jim56?

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 7:50 AM

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

Besides the very real abridgements of constitutional rights you offer up (and I’m not even talking about the 2d Amendment), you failed to answer his question of HOW these things will help. A list of talking points isn’t what he was looking for.

GWB on June 11, 2014 at 10:17 AM

So, about 100-150 million people have a chance to catch HIV/AIDS during their lifetime,
…Versus about 80 million people with guns and 74,000 injuries and 8,000 deaths annually.
 
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 9:09 PM

 
Did you ever figure out how many of the 314,000,000 people in the U.S. have a chance to get shot during their lifetime, jim56?
 
rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 7:50 AM

 
I’m sure the thread is dead, but this really is a tremendous amount of fun.
 
Your only two options are countering your own previous position that guns are a threat to everyone and need more regulation to reduce that threat (because otherwise what’s the point?)
 

Here’s a start:
 
Requiring gun safes and trigger locks (preferably electronic so only you can use your gun)…prescription drugs … psychological counseling…requiring all sales to go through dealers…72 hour period “cooling off” period for the National Background Check System…check for violent statements on social medi…renew licenses every 3 or so years (and to go through the same verification process;
 
jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 6:27 PM

 
or acknowledging that 314M people “have a chance” to be killed/injured by guns annually and yet gun deaths are STILL less than HIV/AIDS 8K dead per year and your bizarre 150M “have a chance” lifetime number.
 
Meaning guns are even safer than originally posted at my cited and linked 116M and your unlinked 80M access-to-guns numbers, because now we’re at 8K deaths and 70K injuries out of 314M.
 
I’m almost certain you didn’t mean to do that, but thank you for your help.
 
Math is neat, isn’t it?

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 12:08 PM

We shouldn’t have to give up our guns, just teach people not to shoot people.

We might have a “shoot culture” along with our “rape culture”.

Axeman on June 11, 2014 at 12:09 PM

…people with far-right wing politics like those who shot two police officers in Las Vegas, execution style, and left a Nazi swastika…

These people were not right-wingers. They were nazis, and nazis are socialists. I know that is a difficult concept for our dumba$$ media and dumba$$ amerikans to understand that the National Socialist German Workers Party (nazi) were socialists and not right wing. But aren’t you in the media supposed to “educate and inform”, Noah? (Or are you just a member of the illiterati?)

earlgrey on June 11, 2014 at 12:16 PM

They were nazis, and nazis are socialists.

earlgrey on June 11, 2014 at 12:16 PM

Then again, despite their use of swastikas, they weren’t really NAZIs, either. I’m not sure where I would classify these sorts of folks on the usual political spectrum. I’m not sure most of their political philosophies are much further thought out than “Hey, let’s go bust some heads! Yeah!” follwed by a bunch of anti-everything and foul language.

GWB on June 11, 2014 at 12:35 PM

r acknowledging that 314M people “have a chance” to be killed/injured by guns annually and yet gun deaths are STILL less than HIV/AIDS 8K dead per year and your bizarre 150M “have a chance” lifetime number.

Meaning guns are even safer than originally posted at my cited and linked 116M and your unlinked 80M access-to-guns numbers, because now we’re at 8K deaths and 70K injuries out of 314M.

I’m almost certain you didn’t mean to do that, but thank you for your help.

Math is neat, isn’t it?

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 12:08 PM

You’re wrong about the comparison, rogerb. 314M people don’t have a chance to be killed by a gun each year because all those people don’t pick up a gun or have a gun pointed at them. Somewhere well upwards of 20M people a year have unsafe sex, get blood transfusions or use needles for drug use. (We know at least 19M people a year catch STDs but I haven’t found any statistics beyond that.)

jim56 on June 11, 2014 at 2:35 PM

jim56 on June 10, 2014 at 9:09 PM

Really? So are we only going to count the guns that are used in violent crimes or accidental shootings as well and not the actual verified numbers? That would help your position even more, right?
 
100% of all guns everywhere kill people!!!
 
rogerb on June 10, 2014 at 9:26 PM

 

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 12:08 PM

 
You’re wrong about the comparison, rogerb. 314M people don’t have a chance to be killed by a gun each year because all those people don’t pick up a gun or have a gun pointed at them. Somewhere well upwards of 20M people a year have unsafe sex, get blood transfusions or use needles for drug use. (We know at least 19M people a year catch STDs but I haven’t found any statistics beyond that.)
 
jim56 on June 11, 2014 at 2:35 PM

 
That is so damn funny I can hardly stand it.
 
Thanks jim56.

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 3:14 PM

jim56, I’ve posted actual data. If you understood math we could discuss the topic.

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 3:15 PM

Cars are unsafe because 100% of the ones involved in wrecks were involved in wrecks!

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 3:17 PM

Dogs are dangerous because 100% of the ones who bit someone bit someone!

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 3:17 PM

You’re wrong about the comparison, rogerb. 314M people don’t have a chance to be killed by a gun each year because all those people don’t pick up a gun or have a gun pointed at them. Somewhere well upwards of 20M people a year have unsafe sex, get blood transfusions or use needles for drug use. (We know at least 19M people a year catch STDs but I haven’t found any statistics beyond that.)
 
jim56 on June 11, 2014 at 2:35 PM

 
Just so we’re all clear, you’re telling us that guns are more of a problem than HIV/AIDS because 50K of 20M people get HIV, while 70K of 80M people get shot with guns.
 
Am we understanding your math correctly?

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 3:26 PM

314M people don’t have a chance to be killed by a gun each year because all those people don’t pick up a gun or have a gun pointed at them.
 
jim56 on June 11, 2014 at 2:35 PM

 
I’m not sure you understand “chance”, either.

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 3:28 PM

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 3:26 PM

“Math is hard.” I notice LFoD hasn’t been back to counter my number-crunching on his “vast majority” statement re “school shootings”.

GWB on June 11, 2014 at 3:44 PM

You’re wrong about the comparison, rogerb. 314M people don’t have a chance to be killed by a gun each year because all those people don’t pick up a gun or have a gun pointed at them.
 
jim56 on June 11, 2014 at 2:35 PM

 
Here, these are simple yes/no responses that don’t really require an understanding of math at all. Ready?
 
1) If I have my handgun in my car as we are pulling into the same parking lot, is there a chance you could be killed with a gun?
 
2) If we are eating dinner with our families at McDonalds and I am armed, is there a chance you could be killed with a gun?
 
3) If the person in the apartment sharing walls with yours owns a gun, is there a chance you could be killed by a gun?

rogerb on June 11, 2014 at 4:02 PM

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