Quote of the day—Josh Sugarmann

Members of Congress are now the latest victims held hostage by America’s gun culture. Congress should act immediately to reinstate an effective ban on high-capacity ammunition magazines and move quickly to pass an effective assault weapons ban.

Josh Sugarmann
January 8, 2011
Congress Must Rein in Gun Industry in Response to Giffords Assassination Attempt
[Had the attacker been thinking clearly (there are strong hints of mental illness) there are more effective ways to kill that many people in close proximity if you don’t have good firearms skills. Use a bucket of gasoline and a cigarette lighter. What would Sugarmann and friends say then? It wouldn’t be “Ban gasoline!” or “Ban cigarette lighters!”

But it really doesn’t matter what Sugarmann says in regards to gun control and particularly in regards to “assault weapons”. Even if the courts haven’t explicitly said that the types of guns specified in the 1994 Federal “Assault Weapon” are now Constitutionally protected via being in “common use.” And that is so ironic because it was because of the ban that they became so popular.

What does matter in regards to the future of gun control in the immediate future is what Rep. Gabrielle Giffords says when she recovers. If she comes out of this exceedingly anti-gun we will be fighting legislative battles for at least several months if not years. If she says guns are not the issue the individual bears the responsibility then the gun control crowd will have their flame almost completely extinguished.—Joe]

10 thoughts on “Quote of the day—Josh Sugarmann

  1. You know they’re grasping at straws when they say to enact bans that won’t affect the gun in question. It would affect the magazine, but anybody halfway competent can drop an empty mag and pop a new one home. Why was he shooting one handed while standing around with the second one in his hand? I’ll guarantee he didn’t have it in a pocket or something beforehand. He probably pulled it out about the time he fired his first shot. That let everybody around him see it the entire time. Good thing for them, but tactically flawed when you’re going for surprise against a vastly superior force that he’s got backed into a corner. It’s either that, or it’s because he had poor quality parts. Some reports said he got the magazine into the Glock, but it failed to load the top round properly. Either way, it’s a ban that wouldn’t have affected the round or the gun itself, only the magazine. Since that’s a STATE issue, good luck getting AZ to do that. Every politician in the country knows that guns are virtually off limits as far as the ‘banning’ goes for the red states. They won’t touch it with someone else’s 10′ pole. Right now, they’re scrambling to just hold what portions of the cake they’ve already got.

    Also, almost done ranting, but it should not be any more illegal to kill a member of Congress than it is to kill an average Joe. They’re just people, same as us. Not to detract from the tragedy that happened. I hope they fry the bastard, but that’s only because of the little girl and the others that were killed.

  2. Although the week is still young, I find it interesting that all of the Congresscritters I’ve seen interviewed discuss how they need to rethink their personal security – but not one has mentioned anything about the “necessity” to beef up gun control.

  3. I’m surprised there isn’t more discussion about how to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill.

  4. And how do you suppose we do that, ubu52? Make it illegal? It already is. Perhaps lock up all mentally ill people against their wishes and that of all of their responsible parties. That’ll fix what ails us.

  5. Clayton Cramer has a simple solution: diagnose those who are mentally ill, and treat them. If they refuse treatment, or don’t respond to it, keep them locked up and comfortable–or at least as comfortable as possible, given their situation–in a mental institution.

    Fortunately, we can treat most cases of schizophrenia, so locking them up isn’t always necessary. I have a sister who has schizophrenia, and medication has helped her substantially.

    But even with societal structure to provide all these things, people will always “slip through the cracks”. That’s just a fact of life.

  6. They’re probably going to hit us with some form of the police psych test but adapted for civilians.

  7. AntiCitizenOne,

    That does seem like a possible logical outcome, and realistically I don’t think the courts would strike it down. Here’s something to ponder, however: In the interest of fairness, the test will most likely be placed on a form and consist of all of the same questions for everyone, rather like an “extended version” of the 4473 form. “One size fits all”–a classic bureaucratic solution. It would have to be multiple choice–essay questions would leave themselves open to allegations of arbitrary denials, as they already do in may-issue states. Then, like the 4473 form, it will be trivial to learn and supply the “correct” (possibly quite distinct from “true”) answers. As has been noted somewhere (I think it was another thread on this blog), the Safeway lunatic lied on the drug question on his 4473. Of course he did–he wasn’t dumb enough to think that he would get what he wanted if he checked “yes”. And, due to the absence of a felony record/domestic violence/history of being placed in a mental institution, there was no information available to NICS or the gun dealer to suggest anything but a go-ahead with the sale.

    Even requiring an examination by a trained professional is fraught with pitfalls, as sometimes those with mental illness can be quite good at acting sane when necessary to achieve their goals, and even a good therapist can sometimes fail to see through this.

    And, of course, even if these things do work properly, there’s the black market–which is going nowhere any time soon. If they really want it badly enough, and have the money, they’ll find a way to get it done.

    And yes, wackjobs like that scare the stuffings out of me–I can think of a few people I’ve encountered who were not quite that unstable, but had no business being within firearms. Most of them, to my knowledge, did not actually own them. But all of them were incredibly manipulative, and surely would/could have done a lot more permanent damage had the idea seized their addled minds. A couple of them had histories of psychological treatment in the form of office visit & medication (which they were in the habit of not taking), but I am unsure how much of that info actually would have gone to NICS. Another problem is that some mental disorders can be permanent, lifelong struggles while others can be dealt with and–for lack of a better word–cured. How would such a system distinguish between these types of illnesses? One of the problems with getting people to seek treatment for mental issues is the stigma that is often associated with having such disorders. Wouldn’t the specter of losing their gun rights tend to drive people away from seeking help? Does a mentally ill person have the same self defense rights as those blessed with clearer minds?

    I apologize for the long post, and parts of it might go better on another thread, but I think there are some very deep, fundamental questions that this idea raises.

  8. I do not know if you can save everyone. We do not give children guns for obvious reasons but they cannot vote either.

    Here’s the thing – how would the psychologist running the psych test for cops know if you’re really trying to become a cop or not? If the testers are not given knowledge firsthand about who in the training class is going to be a cop or not it does not give them much incentive to try and flog specific people – on the other hand it could probably weed out some of the Only Ones Codrea is worried about.

  9. I was arguing against such as system–I realize quite well that you can’t save everyone. But some of us do give children guns, and keep them under close supervision and training until they are both proficient and mature enough to go out on their own. Also, given the number of cops out there with serious anger issues, I believe that such a system would be fairly ineffective and give people a false sense of security.

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