School Shooting Raises Gun Control Issue

Friday's shooting massacre at a Connecticut elementary school has ignited the gun control debate.

Friday's shooting tragedy at a Connecticut school has again brought the topic of gun control to the forefront.

Twenty elementary school children were among the 27 people killed when a gunman opened fire inside a kindergarten class at Sandy Hook Elementary. Adam Lanza, who killed his mother first, was identified as the shooter. He killed himself as a finale to the massacre.

Immediately the debate turned to gun control with advocates saying stricter gun controls are obviously needed. This is the fifth time this President has had to visit the families of mass shooting victims. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, however, said Friday "was not the day" to discuss gun control.

But the President made it clear that this does bring the topic back up. He was criticized during the election by gun control advocates for allowing politics to temper his voice on this issue. Gun owners and strong Second Amendment supporters expect that to change now that there is no longer an election on the line.

Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel, D-Great Neck, a strong advocate for stricter gun control legislation said elected officials must put public safety before the interests of the strongest gun lobbyists.

Those who support gun ownership, however, say disarming those who legally seek gun ownership only leaves the criminals armed since they don't follow the law anyway. They suggest it is a cry for more gun ownership, not less, just stricter enforcement against those who possess guns illegally.

What was your gut reaction to the tragedy? Stricter gun control or time to go out and buy a gun of your own?

John Galt December 17, 2012 at 11:23 AM
punishing decent people by revoking their constitutional freedom to protect themselves isn't a way to mitigate the acts of the criminally insane.
Desertrat December 17, 2012 at 11:26 AM
It's not at all a problem of laws about guns. It's a problem about the absence of any rational mental health system in this country. An absence of hospitals designed and staffed to deal with the mentally unstable. "Gun control!" is merely knee-jerk nattering, side-tracking any meaningful discussion of a long-standing problem. Unfortunately, solutions to the real problem will be expensive.
Elliot Ness December 17, 2012 at 11:31 AM
We already know that adding schools to the list of facilities like airports, courthouses and other government buildings is the right way to go because of what happened in the 1920's when alcohol was banned. We need less organized crime, not more.
Fred December 17, 2012 at 11:33 AM
I already have enough guns. But I am not about to allow some politician who travels with armed bodyguards or has a carry permit of his or her own to disarm me. I'm 70 years old and have been hunting and shooting for 60 years. It's a given that the greater number of armed citizens, the lower the violent crime rate. Gun free zones are nothing but kill zones where the killer knows he won't be opposed. Gun free zones should be renamed free fire zones. Good intentions will make no one safer. The 2nd Amendment isn't about hunting. It's about keeping a free nation free from overbearing, dictatorial governments. It will stand.
Michael Whaling December 17, 2012 at 11:33 AM
This nation cannot continue along this path of insane and senseless violence. Washington politicians must pass powerful laws with deep and meaningful penalties to control the sale of "soldiers" weapons to the public. These laws must include strong measures to ensure that guns of any type do not come easily into the hands of those with mental health problems, or people with a criminal record. These laws must be enforced and bring harsh penalties to those who break them. Enough of the damned NRA.... let them keep their precious self defense and hunting guns, and let me keep my precious children safe. As part of the remedy, this population may wish to take a close look at it's easy acceptance of violence and begin a long conversation about becoming more giving, tolerant and yes, loving. It can happen, we need only to have the will.
M Svenson December 17, 2012 at 11:34 AM
Considering all of the guns were stolen, I am for gun control if "control" means a good gun safe.
Desertrat December 17, 2012 at 11:40 AM
Michael, you must be fairly new to this gun-law discussion. Federal government statistics over the last forty-some years contradict your thesis, as do numerous competent studies of the subject. Recommended reading: Numbers from the Center for Disease Control. Justice Department numbers. Authors such as John Lott, Wright/Rossi/Daly and Dr. Gary Kleck. Laws provide for punishment, but not for prevention.
bob smith December 17, 2012 at 11:51 AM
because you cannot handle your rights you must take mine?
Everyday Joe December 17, 2012 at 11:56 AM
The "gun nuts" are right: This is not a problem about guns. This has NOTHING to do with guns. Had this kid used a box cutter the results would have been the same; heck, maybe even worse. And just look at how many thousands of people have successfully defended themselves and their families by using the same type of weapon he used (the AR-15). They keep it under their pillow in case an intruder comes into their home in the middle of the night. And when the Communists finally come to take over America, they'll be ready, just like Adam Lanza's mother was ready. After all, this weapon is for self-defense. What we need is MORE guns out there. In fact, every law abiding citizen who goes into a mall, movie theater, sporting event, concert, festival, etc., should be allowed-no, REQUIRED-to carry a gun. You know, just in case. This would most certainly make our society much safer.
bob smith December 17, 2012 at 12:06 PM
You mean like Switzerland where the government Issues you a weapon and trains all its citizens?
Everyday Joe December 17, 2012 at 12:12 PM
I agree with John on this one. I'm sure this morning Adam Lanza's mother (along with 27 other families) is glad we didn't "punish" her by revoking her constitutional freedom to protect herself, which she was prepared to do and was sooooo successful at on Friday morning. After all, isn't that what a weapon like the AR-15 is for?
Desertrat December 17, 2012 at 12:19 PM
Forget guns. Irrelevant to the real problem. Consider the reality with which this woman must cope on a daily basis: http://anarchistsoccermom.blogspot.com/2012/12/thinking-unthinkable.html
Everyday Joe December 17, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Sorry Bob, but the U.S. ain't Switzerland. Never has been, never will be. So you're comparing apples and oranges. And the problem is not solely about gun control or the lack thereof. It's culture, it's mental illness, it's the attitude about our "freedoms", and yes, it's also about guns. There's no easy solution, but to say that the solution is to just fix "this" or "that" is to kid ourselves. It's multifaceted and no one, on either side of the gun control issue, can say otherwise (at least not with a straight face). And on Switzerland (and Israel, often included in this debate), read this http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2012/12/14/mythbusting-israel-and-switzerland-are-not-gun-toting-utopias/. (I apologize if the link does not work, but you can look it up). I'm not saying that "gun control"-whatever that is-would fix the problem on its own; it will not. But you and I have to wonder if we'd be talking about this had this kid not had access to these weapons. 27 families must be asking themselves this very question this morning, along with asking about what help the kid received for his mental illness.
S. Persh December 17, 2012 at 12:55 PM
Is it a coincidence that during Obama's terms there has been several of these tragedies? Coincidence? I don't think so, I don't believe in coincidences. A series of tragic events (of the same type)((GUNS)) that seems like coincidence are really events that have been planned or arranged. There are gun control people, and some of our own government, that will do anything to obtain their objectives. (even murder). Coincidences like this just don't keep happening. Think of the big picture down the road when the public have no guns, our rights are gone, The population with guns can protect, the population without guns are servants. We have now shown the enemies of the US how to strike at us, to hurt us most, our schools and our children. With no means to protect our most valued commodities, our families, we are open to whatever terror they can conger up. Don't be fooled. We must not lose our rights, not any of them. THINK, just don't act and later be sorry. The politicians don't care, they just want to be reelected so they can enjoy the good life at our expense.
Everyday Joe December 17, 2012 at 01:05 PM
S. Persh has just convinced me that what we need, URGENTLY, is to improve our pathetic system of mental health care in the U.S. Mental illness seems to be more prevalent and deeper than I thought. Let's get this poor soul some help before he turns into the next Adam Lanza.
S. Persh December 17, 2012 at 01:41 PM
Joe, to put me in the same catigory as Adam Lanza is quite an insult. Everyday i try to protect people, esp. children. What you do to children is the real tradedy, esp your own, you are a terrible person.
Everyday Joe December 17, 2012 at 01:52 PM
So Persh, you write, "With no means to protect our most valued commodities, our families, we are open to whatever terror they can conger up." Adam Lanza's mother would have agreed with you wholeheartedly. You are insulted because I put you in the same category as Adam Lanza, as you put it. But you commented, "There are gun control people, and some of our own government, that will do anything to obtain their objectives. (even murder)." So what have you just done to those on the other side of the gun control issue? You opened yourself up to insults of all types. Dude, stop throwing stones or get the heck out of that glass house! I'm actually being kind to you. Don't you think someone should have gotten help (or more help) for Adam? I don't doubt that you're a good person, but you're paranoid and need help. On the other hand, you should be careful...just because you're paranoid doesn't mean someone isn't out to get you!
Everyday Joe December 17, 2012 at 01:57 PM
And Persh, if you hear a knock at the door, DON'T OPEN IT! Obama may just bust in any minute and try to take away your guns, children, wife, Bible, and who knows what else! They're out there...in the bushes, behind cars, infiltrating churches and sporting events. They're everywhere! (Whoever "they" are!)


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