Quote of the day—Robert Gebbia

If you can make it difficult at that moment when they are serious about taking their lives, you get that chance to intervene.

Robert Gebbia
Executive director of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
March 21, 2013
New Colorado gun control law could help prevent suicides
[This was while referring to the requirement that there be background checks for all firearm transfers.

Governor Hickenlooper came in a close second for QOTD in the same article with:

However many homicides we have each year with handguns, we have about 20 percent more suicides. That number drops significantly when you have universal background checks.”

Citation needed.

If that were actually true then it would be parroted by every anti-gun person in every debate. It hasn’t been. I attribute the statement to Hickenlooper doing what politicians do, which is making up stuff to fit their agenda.

But let’s look at Gebbia’s statement and indirectly show why Hickenlooper statement is almost for certain false.

The only way Gebbia’s statement makes sense is if all of the following are true:

  • A significant number of suicides are committed by people with a gun.
  • Those people only had possession or access to a single gun.
  • That gun was obtained via a private transfer.
  • The private transfer occurred in the previous few hours or at most days.
  • The FFL doing the background check also does a mental health evaluation at the same time.
  • The FFL has some sort of authority to intervene and turn them over to mental health professions before they pursue an alternate suicide method.

Will FFL’s be required to have suicide detection training? Or will the ATF just add another check box on the 4473?

My hypothesis is that neither will happen. All that is going to happen already has. And that is that Robert Gebbia just demonstrated he has crap for brains.—Joe]


9 thoughts on “Quote of the day—Robert Gebbia

  1. A few more things have to be true in addition to the ones you listed:
    – The person does not have access to any other weapon
    – The person does not have access to any other way of killing himself.

    J. Neil Schulman, in his book “Stopping Power” (http://www.pulpless.com/jneil/ceasfire.html) offers this:

    “Five separate studies of suicide show that people who are determined to kill themselves just choose another way to die if their first choice isn’t available. In a study by Rich et al reported in the March 1990 issue of The American Journal of Psychiatry, Canadians who wanted to commit suicide but found guns harder to come by due to recent gun control instead jumped off bridges.”

  2. I believe it’s illegal to kill yourself now. But with universal background checks and an extra check box on the 4473 (“Do you plan to use this gun to kill yourself”) you could make it doubly-extra illegal. Add in harsh sentencing guidelines for gun-suicides, such that those who committed gun-suicide would get longer sentences, particularly if they were unsuccessful in killing themselves. Maybe run a national billboard campaign, “Gun-suicides are a felony.” Perhaps put up snitch lines with rewards for those who turn in people contemplating gun-suicide.

    For those planning to just jump in front of a train or off a bridge, heck, just charge them with littering. Somebody has to clean up that mess. But it’s just common sense that gun-dead is worse than train-dead or gravity-dead.

  3. Maybe Hickenlooper can prevent gun suicides by making them capital crimes in Colorado.

    And yes, I am intending to be offensive — to Hickenlooper in particular.

  4. What good are you with your “truth” and your “principles” and your “constitution” while people are dying?!!! Hickenlooper may very well be a lying son of a bitch with no regard for the law of the land, and with contempt for liberty, but at least HE is trying to DO SOMETHING while all you’re doing is GETTING IN THE WAY!!! You should be forced to shut up, and if that doesn’t work you should be arrested!!!! You have blood on your hands, Mister!!!!

    That’s the reflexive thinking we’re up against, and it may be that no amount of facts, evidence or articulation of principles can overcome it. That mindset has been innoculated against all those things. It has been conditioned into millions of people. Our challenge is to find ways to de-hypnotize people, and so I think maybe we should spend some time looking into how this Soviet-style psy-ops war is being fought and how to counter it specifically and directly. I think maybe we’ve spent a lot of years talking principles and facts, getting frustrated and exasperated, not really understanding exactly what we’ve been up against.

    • That’s true. And the answer is to present the facts.
      The facts from John Lott, showing that widespread concealed carry reduces crime. The facts from Gary Kleck, showing that millions of times per year a violent crime is foiled by the intended victim defending him/herself with a gun. The facts from the FBI national crime victimization survey, showing that a person defending against violent attack with a gun is only half as likely to be injured or killed than a person who offers no resistance at all (and about a quarter as likely to be injured or killed as a person who resists with a lesser tool). And finally, the fact that nearly all mass killings — such as the two notorious ones in Colorado as well as the one in Connecticut — were committed in disarmed victim zones (those places falsely advertised as “gun free zones”, but in fact places where the criminal was promised by the government that no one would be resisting his rampage).
      Yes, some people aren’t interested in facts. If so, subjecting them to facts will expose their dishonesty. But those who actually do care about facts need to be given some, as opposed to the lies and distorted misinformation they have been getting.

  5. Hickenlooper has been sitting in rooms when people pointed out the falsehoods he’s telling. He knows he’s lying.

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