Taking on Guns Will Be the Easy Part

We’ve already started hearing the arguments about how we need to control guns, at least certain kinds of guns.  We hear these same arguments every time something horrific, like the terrible tragedy in Connecticut, shatters our otherwise normal routine.

This time, I suspect, we’ll stop talking and actually do something.  Twenty dead first graders has a way of focusing a nation’s attention.

No reasonable person, and that includes millions of gun owners, wants to repeal the Second Amendment – though I suspect more than a few liberals would like to if they could. But no reasonable person can make the case any longer that civilians need semi-automatic weapons and clips that hold 100 bullets.

Some may worry about the slippery slope. That’s understandable. If we ban assault weapons, they say, what will the authorities ban next.  Handguns? Rifles? Then who will protect us, not just from common criminals, but also from the government itself? They will tell us that we already have enough gun laws on the books and that we don’t need any more.  They’re wrong.

The First Amendment guarantees all of us freedom of speech.  But we can’t shout fire in a crowded theater if there is no fire, and we can’t libel decent people with made up stories designed to hurt them.  No rights are absolute.

Republicans would be smart to actually lead the move to ban assault weapons and not just follow the Democrats.  This would help repair the damage done to the GOP brand by the crazies who think President Obama was born somewhere outside of the United States and the zealots who think that abortion should always be illegal, even in the case of rape or incest.

But on many issues Republicans aren’t smart. So when Congress convenes in January, and gun legislation is brought up on Day One, some Republicans will vote No on the assault weapon ban. If too many vote that way, it will be another self-inflicted wound for the GOP, more proof that they’re out of touch with the American people.

But in many ways dealing with guns will be the easy part.  Congress, I think, will pass laws that ban assault weapons.  But what laws can Congress pass to protect us from the mentally ill?

Virtually all of the young men who used their guns to kill innocents in Tucson or at Columbine or the movie theater in Aurora or at Virginia Tech were sick.

People who knew them knew something was wrong long before the rest of us turned on the TV and found out just how unstable they were.  But that didn’t stop the massacres.

Years ago, when I was a correspondent at CBS News, I did a story about young men whose families knew they were mentally ill, and suspected that some day they would do something terrible. But they couldn’t get them committed to a mental institution unless they either threatened to hurt themselves or someone else — or until they actually did hurt someone. Eventually they did.  One man shot up a church killing many of the congregants.  Another killed his parents.  Only then were they taken out of society.

It’s a safe bet that somebody knew that Adam Lanza was a ticking time bomb.  His mother probably knew, but she can’t tell us about him anymore.  Others may have known too.  And we may soon hear from them.  What they tell us may be interesting.  But it will come too late.

We don’t want to live in a country where someone can simply say, “Hey my neighbor’s nuts” and then have the police take the poor guy away.  And no mother wants to report a threat, if it means her child will go to jail.

But neither can we let people who show signs of serious mental illness walk the streets until they do something terrible.  That’s crazy!

We don’t need any more long conversations about guns.  By now, we all know the arguments.  Now we need to pass laws that deal with assualt weapons.  Laws that make sure civilians don’t get their hands on them, whether the NRA likes it or not.

And we also need to do something about mentally ill people who are well on their way to doing something truly horrible. And we need to do it fast.  The nexus between semi-automatic weapons and mental illness is a scary one — and too often a deadly one.

But we all know that.  What we don’t know is what to do when we only suspect the worst, when we think that kid who is a loner and seems odd may do something terrible but have no hard evidence to back up our fears.  The system doesn’t know how to handle hunches.

So let’s end the conversation about guns – at least the part about assault guns.  And let’s start the much more difficult conversation about the young man in the next room, or the one next door, the one who doesn’t seem to fit in, who seems strange and sullen, but who hasn’t done anything bad.  Yet.

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  • d

    We shouldn’t completely revoke the second amendment? Why the fuck not were aren’t occupied anymore nor will it happen any time soon.

  • Jeff

    “Republicans would be smart to actually lead the move to ban assault weapons and not just follow the Democrats.” Etc. Goldberg, you and others like you who pretend they are conservative are the biggest threat to conservative principles. Trying to make friends on the left?

  • http://www.facebook.com/tommy.hudspeth Tommy Hudspeth

    Bernard you are a complete idiot, all I read is give in to our little ban and we will we done. This is the first step in total confiscation of all weapons for protection and sport. How would Isreal feel if the US stopped all military aid to Isreal and let the middle east have their way? Stop being a total tool!

  • archangel89

    Sorry, but you’re wrong.

  • LibertyPatron

    We already passed a law banning felons of the mentally ill from buying guns.

    1968 – Gun Control Act expanded licensing and record-keeping; banned felons and the mentally ill from buying guns; banned the mail order sale of guns.

    Did it work! No, so why do people really think that putting another law in place is really going to stop the gun violence? People that shoot up places are crazy. Their is a reason they are called crazy.

    I just read a comment on another site that was going against securing our schools. Someone said do we really want our kids going to a school bunker to be safe. Look around people, what do our politicians do, court houses, movie stars, high ranking business people. So we are saying these people are more important than the kids?

    No laws or banning certain types of guns are going to stop the violence. Even if you removed all guns, you don’t think these “crazy” people will find another way to hurt someone. What about a pipe bomb, running people over with a car, baseball bats, knifes. It can go on and on. So why don’t we stop talking about things that are not going to help and actually talk about things that will.

  • Joel Wischkaemper

    A point of interest

    Real gun threat: Illegal-alien street gangs
    FBI warns that thugs acquiring ‘assault weapons’ to engage civilians, cops

    Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/01/real-gun-threat-illegal-alien-street-gangs/#kWbbhyfzgTD7OsBU.99
    With the national debate focused on civilian gun control, is perhaps the biggest armed threat within the U.S. being minimized?

    According to the FBI, criminal street gangs – mostly comprised of illegal aliens – are acquiring high-powered, military-style weapons to potentially engage in lethal encounters with law enforcement members and citizens alike.

    Criminal street gangs are responsible for the majority of violent crimes within the U.S. and are the primary distributors of most illicit drugs, according to a 2009 report by the Justice Department’s National Drug Intelligence Center, or NDIC.
    Banning assault weapons is bright, and boy do I want to watch while Obama tries to get them back. The police.. partially due to the tort reform that Obama did not do, cannot protect us in our homes. I see a need for guns that is serious in some cases, and particularly along the border. And while there have been a few recent tragedies, we have perhaps a 100 million people with significant weapons, and without incidents. Soo.. ban guns? Don’t get stupid. But do please.. get the assult weapons away from the gang members.

  • joe

    new rule – 2nd canceled because it was a usesless rule in the firstplace.

  • AllenJ

    I watched some of the exchange between Alex Jones and Piers Morgan on CNN. Judging from Jones’ behaviour, I wouldn’t let him anywhere near a gun. That guy came across as a major nut case. He was the best argument the gun control crowd could ever have to ban assault rifles, RPGs, bazookas and any other weapon you think that the Second Amendment entitles you to.

    Thanks a lot Alex! You could change the whole course of the debate with your performance.

  • gray_man

    sorry, MR. Goldberg, you are wrong in so many ways in this article, that it would take another article to explain how.

    • arj127

      Why don’t you try to give a précis and don’t forget to cite your sources. I doubt that you can.

      • gray_man

        “No reasonable person, and that includes millions of gun owners, wants to repeal the Second Amendment ” false: the left has made it clear they want to repeal the 2nd amendment and take all guns.

        “But no reasonable person can make the case any longer that civilians need semi-automatic weapons and clips that hold 100 bullets.” false: the history of socialism shows that is false. Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, and others all took away the ability of the populous to fight before slaughtering millions.

        “Some may worry about the slippery slope. That’s understandable. If we ban assault weapons, they say, what will the authorities ban next. Handguns? Rifles? Then who will protect us, not just from common criminals, but also from the government itself? They will tell us that we already have enough gun laws on the books and that we don’t need any more. They’re wrong … No rights are absolute.” – Wrong again Bernie Criminals continue to break laws, and my right to life IS ABSOLUTE!

        Those are three reasons right there – do your own research.

  • meldavenel

    Let’s assume that Adam Lanza’s mother was aware that he was less than mentally stable. Why would she keep guns in the house? If she didn’t have the assault rifle, do you think that he could not have inflicted the same damage with a shotgun and a pistol? I know from duck hunting experience that you can carry 2 boxes of shotgun shells in your pockets. And it just depends on how many clips he wanted to carry for the pistol.

    I have friends that have assault rifles, and they take great pleasure shooting them at the gun range. No amount of gun control is going to stop someone from acquiring pretty much whatever gun they desire. Our own government probably got more people killed with Operation “Fast and Furious” than Adam Lanza’s killing spree. Armed guards would help stop crime at the schools. We need to concentrate on keeping guns out of the hands of felons and serious law breakers. We need to stop the revolving doors in prisons. Prisoners need to serve their full sentence. Liberal judges need to quit letting them out early. If we need more prisons, build them. Not only would felons be able to serve their sentence, but it would create jobs, both in building prisons and in staffing them. Let’s leave the 2nd Amendment alone, and enforce the laws we have.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jack.withers.77 Jack Withers

    half the guns on the market are “semi automatic”. And ,,no true “assult rifles” are available for purchase by the average citizen. True “assult rifles” are already banned. Get educated.

    • arj127


      Try learning how to spell – it’s “assault” not “assult”

  • Nowherefast

    SO, let me get this straight, we are going to punish the masses, because a few parents do not want to “Parent” their kids? So we take away the guns and another tragedy happens, then what? Who then are the “Parents” going to blame? When people have weapons, then along with the responsibility of having them is teaching their children to respect them! If you have a parent who is letting children play with guns, then do not let your kids play with that family, intervene. call the authorities instead of waiting for a tragedy like CO,VT to happen. IF you do not know what your children are doing and with whom, then your the root of this problem. Adult weapons do not belong to children, as children cannot buy them!!
    Shooting can be a family hobby, as with all hobbies, care and responsibility should be at the forefront. I believe the real issue here is parents “parenting” instead of letting society do it for them so they are not inconvenienced. If work is an issue, then lock up, store elsewhere, sell your weapons, FOREMOST tell/enforce to your children NO, your the ADULT!!!
    As far as GUN shows, I have never seen anyone or heard of anyone able to buy one at any gun show without the dealer calling my information into a U.S. Government office to verify my identification.
    I don’t not care if your left, right or indifferent. Everybody has a opinion, and I may agree or respectfully disagree, however why should I give up one of my rights? Who are those to say “I don’t like or fear guns” so no one should have them. Who do those think would actually give up their guns? Only the people those have no reason to fear to begin with!
    Beware of the precedent that is set, for the Government only takes, and only gives for it’s own self interest (In my opinion)..

  • POC247

    Controlling the rights and responsibilities of law abiding citizens who own weapons of any type will not deter violent criminals nor will it stop the mentally deranged. If someone wants to inflict mayhem, they will figure out a way to do it. Removing gun rights from owners is far easier and less complicated to do than address the criminal and mentally unbalanced element. That would require analysis and intelligent thought. Something our fearless, armed body guarded leaders lack.

  • Dennis

    I have been a gun owner almost my entire life. I am 61 now so it has been a while. I am not a fanatic about this. I don’t believe people have the right to own any type of firearm they want. I am not a member of the NRA but I do agree with them about not compromising with the anti-gun advocates who will never compromise until only criminals are allowed to have guns.
    I do not own a so-called assault rifle and have no desire to although I do not begrudge those who do. If you really want to ban assault rifles, go ahead. But, stop kidding yourself that it will do any good. Admit that the real reason you want to do it is to make yourself feel good because you are ‘doing something’ which is really what this entire discussion is about. Liberals wanting to ‘do something’ so they will feel good. And that is the only thing you will accomplish.

  • LibertysSon

    Just a note of information. There are no 100 round magazines. Biggest magazines available for the AR15 are 30 and 20 rounds. Most knowledgeable gun owners know that the 30 rould mags are prone to jam easily and prefer 20 roud mags instead. They want to limit mags to 10 rounds max with the ban.
    Since you can drop and replace a magazine in 3 seconds this restriction will have no effect on the ability of a mass murderers rampage unless he is confronted with an armed response.

    • http://www.facebook.com/norbert.tanguay Norbert Tanguay

      Yes there are. I believe it’s called or looks like a Rams Horn which fits the Ruger Mini-14. Saw an add years ago, don’t know if they still are made. I agree anything over a 20 is prone to jamming.

    • http://www.youarestupidif.com Nate Tanguay

      Yes there are. There ARE many kinds for many different type of guns .22, .223, etc. Type in your browser, 100 round magazines and SURPRISE!

      • LibertysSon

        Well Nate, You are right. My apologies. I misspoke. They do exist, but no one with firearms experience would use one of these in an actual combat situation. I should have said these are not used rather than they didn’t exist. The Military and law enforcement found that these mags are extremely prone to jamming and unreliable. In my 40 years of shooting experience, I have never seen anyone use one of these 100 round magazines

        One, a large bulky circular drum magazine, is so prone to misfeeding that you are lucky if it can fire 20 rounds before a feed malfunction occurs. The straight 100 round mags aren’t much better. They are triple stacked and don’t feed reliably either . These are gimmicky useless accessories . Even the 30 round mags are hardly usable as they feed unreliably. For that reason, our military uses 20 round magazines in their M4 rifles. In my 31 years as a police officer we never carried anything but 20 round magazines for our AR’s for the same reason.

        The Mall shooter in Oregon had 30 round mags and they jammed after about 12 shots were fired. These guys are generally all cowards. After the jam, when the shooter was confronted by an armed citizen with a pistol he retreated into a stairwell and shot himself.

        Nate, respectfully, magazines are not the problem. As long as the shooter is in a gun free zone and has no armed challenge he can carry and reload 10 round magazines in seconds and continue his massacre. That’s the sad truth.

        We really need to reevaluate the so called “Gun Free Zone” idea. My personal preference would be a trained volunteer Armed Teacher program modeled after the Armed Pilots program that has been successfully in place in the airline industry for the last 10 years.

        • http://www.youarestupidif.com Nate Tanguay

          No apology required. I agree with you completely. Have I invited you yet to join my Warriors. http://www.secondamendmentwarrior.com
          Retired LEO/Ct Rangemaster 17 years.

  • LibertysSon

    The musket was the military assault rifle of it’s time. As you know the
    second amendment was not put in the constitution for hunting. It was put
    in so that, God forbid, we the people have to confront a tyrannical
    government we could do so.. Military weapons were exactly what Jefferson
    was referring to. I’m sure an oppressive government would love it if we
    all were allowed to own single shot rifles and pistols.

    The magazine capacity issue is a red herring as well. If this little
    puke, Lanza, had 4 ten round magazines instead of 2 twenty round
    magazines it would simply make no difference. You can drop a magazine
    and reinsert a new magazine in 3 seconds. So I see no logic that fewer
    deaths at the school in Newtown would occur if the larger magazines were
    not available. Sorry.

    You know that an AR15 is not a Military assault weapon. True
    Military assault rifles have switchable firing modes like full auto, 3
    burst and single shot. These weapons are capable of 600 rds a minute in
    full auto. The AR15 is not an assault rifle. It is only capable of one
    shot per trigger pull

    The AR15 is only semi auto and like all semi auto rifles built since the
    turn of the last century by Remington, Winchester, Ruger, etc.
    Cosmetically it looks like the Military M4 but it is not a rifle the
    military would use.

    The AR15 uses a .223 caliber cartridge. My Remington deer rifle is also a
    semi auto that I bought in the 70’s. It is .30 caliber and much more
    powerful than the AR15. Should we ban that too? Why not? It functions
    identical to the AR15 and is more than twice as powerful.

    In conclusion I say that banning a gun because it looks like a military
    issue weapon, yet is functionally identical to all semi auto rifles in
    America, is an emotional and illogical choice. What part of “..Shall not
    be infringed” do we not understand?

  • LibertysSon

    Bernie, Even you? It is scary to see you say that people that actually believe in the Constitution are considered “crazies” and “born somewhere outside the US”. We have fallen so far from the values that were used by or founders to give birth to this great experiment in freedom. I’m depressed to hear you say these things.

  • JayDee

    Bernie, you are a bright guy, so make me feel safe. Should all assault weapons be banned will you promise that the bad guys will not have “assault” weapons. I fear the common criminal a great deal more than the mentally ill there are so many more of them and some ( many) have assault weapons. Yes, we must do something about identifying sickos, getting them help and/or isolating them from society.

  • Takincareofbusiness

    Little o will go down as the most divisive president & person in U.S. history. Guns aren’t the only problem. Have you noticed how much violence & domestic mass killings there have been in the past four years? It has become a weekly occurrence since his re-election. This isn’t a coincidence. He brings out the worst in our citizens including himself spewing his vile, hateful, negative teleprompter speeches.

  • Joel Wischkaemper

    I don’t even think we are talking about the right problems associated with the killing of children in a school system. I think we need to look at the Media and find unbiased opinion on the effects of the unending.. almost non-stop violence of every exotic type. How many people go to sleep with the Television on and how does that influence us? It does influence us.. is it the final motivation in a violent society? Is the Media the reason so many people are arming themselves and waiting for Armageddon?

  • Switchlight13

    Another year of Obama and we can change the name of the USA to “Europe-West”.

  • Jason Frodge

    Why all the concern for capacity and no concern for caliber, Bernie? You know the difference between a .223 and a 30-06? Or a .308? Or a 30-30? See you focus on capacity when that isn’t an issue when people are panicked. It doesn’t matter if a shooter has to reload with 7 shot clips or 15 shot. When people are panicked, a shooter will have all the time in the world. So, what about caliber? A .223 certainly can kill, but there are larger calibers that can inflict greater damage. Which you actually need while hunting. Then there’s the whole issue of what defines an assault weapon. Isn’t EVERY weapon an assault weapon? Face it, the only solution is to meet force with force, but that would only happen when we actually want to address gun violence.

  • catholicvoter

    I agree with SCMark. You know I love you Bernie, but I don’t think there’s anyone any of us agree with 100% of the time. As far as the conversation on mental health that will be a tough one. There are many “loners” who are not harmful in anyway. I was routinely labeled “weird” when I was in high school but dangerous is the last thing I was. We have to watch getting the government involved in too much because they tend to get it wrong. Next thing you know we’ll be locking up “nerds” who could be the future engineers and inovators.

  • Switchlight13

    Why re-open the insane asylums/hostpitals that were closed in the 1980s and lock the nut jobs up when we can reinstate the worthless and feel good semi-auto ban which accomplished nothing in the 1990s.?

  • Switchlight13

    “Any country that’s dumb enough to elect Obama twice is capable of falling for anything”……..The Daily Caller.

  • Switchlight13

    Will long time anti-gun Biden and his anti- 2nd amendment task force recommend even more gun control then we have now? The suspense is unbearable.

  • Anna G. Johnson

    Finally a conservative with a reasonable mind. Assault weapons do need to be banned without being the “slippery slope.” Hunting and protection from home intruders do not need assault weapons, and they are too deadly in the hands of unstable people.

    I have been voting Republican, but I am more and more alienated from their narrow-minded stubbornness about these kinds of issues and the lunacy of the birther movement, among other things. If conservatives do not renew the Republican party, I will no longer vote for them in the future.

    • Switchlight13

      Nice try Democrat liberal but no cigar. You don’t even know what a real assault weapon is. Colunbine happened while the last feel good so called assault weapons ban was in place during the Clinton years.. Feel good nonsense for the sheep..

    • LibertysSon

      You are a troll pretending to be a Conservative.

    • AllenJ

      That’s the problem with the Republican Party. They’ve been hijacked by the lunacy on the right wing fringe. Switchlight13 and LibertysSon are examples. I agree with you about thinking conservatives being alienated by the lunatics. The GOP has nowhere to go but down if it continues to cater to them. They don’t represent mainstream America. Frankly, neither does Bernie but occasionally he gets it right.

  • Bill

    The very foundation of our liberty is the right to defend ourselves and our families from evil be it in the form of a housebreaker, rapist, or government goons. Without that we are not free.

    • Switchlight13

      Exactly but there are lots of sheep in America.

    • AllenJ

      Government goons??? Really??? Haven’t you heard of the Bill of Rights enshrined in the Constitution? You have democratically elected government with limits placed on its powers through the Constitution. You sound like some survivalist lunatic out in the back woods.

  • Lenny

    I don’t agree they will be able to get the guns off market just like drugs. We live in a fallen world. Evil and bad things happen. This only proved government can not keep us safe! Time to get rid of TSA, Patriot Act and all other power grabbing by government. Enforcing new gun laws makes the left salivate. Just more power agains the people, that is all!

  • Switchlight13

    New “gun task force” led by anti-gun Biden looking for MORE then just a feel good semi-auto ban. Soon we will be just another European type unarmed welfare state. American sheep wanted it and soon they will have it. They deserve the inevitable collapse soon to come. The founders , if alive today, would issue a new Declaration of Independence aimed at the usupers in the White House.

  • Ricardo

    Folks, I’m sorry for the children in Connecticut but guns didn’t kill anyone, people did. A roomful of babies were recently killed with a blade in Asia and something similar happened in Europe. What will they ban in those cases?

    • Bob Hadley

      If you’re refering to the stabbing incident in China, no one was killed. Twenty-two were injured, two seriously.

  • Ricardo

    Bernie’s logic is a nonstarter

    Bernie, If a nut in Connecticut driving a Prius runs down a group of children walking home from school will you ban me from driving an automobile in Illinois? Your logic is inconsistent. How about putting your head on straight?

  • koopy

    “But no reasonable person can make the case any longer that civilians
    need semi-automatic weapons…….
    Some may worry about the slippery slope. That’s understandable. If we
    ban assault weapons, they say, what will the authorities ban next.

    You do realize that most hand guns these days are semi-automatic weapons don’t you? And you do realize that an “assault” weapon is whatever anybody defines an “assault” weapon to be don’t you? No, you clearly don’t. You’ll have to pardon me for not giving up my rights because you and others have no clue of what you’re talking about, i’ll keep my semi-automatic weapons and “assault” weapons.

  • nigga_pleese@yahoo.com

    Take all the guns from the people. I love it! Only criminals and the government will have them. I love Cuba, Russia and China. FUCK AMERICA

    • Switchlight13

      Stick around, we’ll soon be like them.

    • Bob Hadley

      Bernie, Would you allow this kind of abusiveness in your home? Why allow it here?

  • Paul

    Wow this guy is f’en nuts do you honestly think that makeing more gun laws is going to do anything it won’t take this gun away and then they use that gun take all guns away then they make a bomb or use a knife or run over a bunch of people with a car or truck, guns don’t kill anyone more than spoons make you idiots fat, the problem is not guns in society the problem is the laws that govern society because nothing happens to these people they kill someone they get life in prison buy the way that’s 25 years then we let this animal out and wonder why they did it again, stop the maddens let’s get rid of the bad people period they take a life then they need to loose there’s you put strickter laws on people doing bad crap to other people, and stop calling child protective services on people diciplining there kids with a spanking see if things don’t change I can garentee they will for the better.

  • ARJ127

    This site looks bogus to me. I’ve posted two comments this evening. They’ve both disappeared. What kind of honesty is that??? The more I see of Bernie Goldberg, the more I think that his site is a self-serving fluffing of his ego. There’s no integrity here.

    • Bob Hadley

      “The more I see of Bernie Goldberg, the more I think that his site is a self-serving fluffing of his ego.”
      Quite the contrary, I think bernie is profitting off of our egos. :)

  • http://twitter.com/he88ion Michael J Hession

    Police see the need for ‘assault weapons’ when facing well armed criminals, why shouldn’t good citizens? Police admit they can’t always get to the scene on time – witness Sandy Hook.

  • ARJ127

    You’d figure that times have changed in 230 years or so. We don’t need to have assault weapons to protect you from a democratically elected government.

    As for you guys who think that Obama is a socialist with communist tendencies, please get some medical help. You are truly suffering from a psychotic condition. In fact, you should never ever be allowed near a gun. You could be as dangerous as that Lanza kid.

    Granted, countries with more restrictive gun laws than America’s have had some similar incidents. The carnage in Norway comes to mind. However, they have them infrequently, compared to America. Unless we find ways to keep assault weapons out of the hands of nut cases, we will see more tragedies like the one in Newtown.

    I hope that the NRA is sincere with its pledge to provide constructive proposals in the upcoming debate. It’s about time.

  • Thune wow

    Bernie failed logic in paragraph 3 at:

    “But no reasonable person can make the case any longer that civilians need semi-automatic weapons and clips that hold 100 bullets.”

    Civilians don’t need semi-automatic weapons?

    Almost ALL guns in the US are semi-automatic.

    And, No “clip” has 100 rounds.

    I seriously don’t mind honest disagreements about the breadth and depth of the 2nd amendment.

    But, why does every single person pushing for stricter gun control, without fail, argue from a position of firearms ignorance?

  • Iowa48

    I think we need to give President Obama the benefit of a doubt and heed his words. He did not say we had to ban guns; what he said at the Sandy Hook memorial service was:

    “We will have to change. … If there is even one step we can take to save another child, or another parent, or another town, from the grief … then surely we have an obligation to try.”

    I wholeheartedly agree with President Obama about our obligation to change. And that “one step” we have the obligation to try is the mandatory training and arming of school teachers.

    I think a reasonable goal would be firearms certification of a minimum of 50% of all teachers and 100% of all administrators at each and every school, with mandatory refresher training and qualifications each semester. Certified teachers would be required to pass the training and maintain qualification for their firearms in order to be employed, and we could pay those teachers a 10% salary bonus for their certification. They would be required to carry a concealed firearm each and every day they are at work in a school. School administrators would also be required to carry a concealed firearm, and in addition would be required to qualify on and maintain an M4 carbine in their office. Perhaps we also need to consider arming a percentage of school bus drivers to reduce the potential for buses to become a target.

    Schools found not to be in compliance would have all federal funds cut off, and states with schools not in compliance would have reductions in federal funds until they achieve compliance.

    I know this would be a bold measure to undertake by our President, but this is the real opportunity to not let a crisis go to waste. In addition to removing schools as attractive soft targets for the unregulated mentals, I forsee some real positive economic activity in manufacturing, training, construction of ranges, and the associated accoutrements of arming and training our teachers.
    Rather than engaging in a divisive and futile civil war trying to disarm America, I am sure the arming of teachers would meet no objections from Americans who want to protect the Constittution along with protecting their kids, and only minimal and indefensible objections from the marxists that want to disarm America and usurp the Constitution.

    The arming and training of teachers is the most immediate step that needs to be taken. We can discuss the necessary step of reducing the threats posed by the mentally ill after we have ensured the safety of our school children. And even if we lose the fight to institutionalize the mentals, we will have an armed response to blunt the threat posed by them.

    As the President said, we have an obligation to try this one step to save another child, even one child. We have the obligation to ensure that there are no more Sandy Hooks or Columbines or Beslans.

    • Switchlight13

      That’ll never happen in the USA of 2012. The liberals prefer dead victims rather then living heroes.

  • William Custis Buffington

    “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state
    (West Virginia), the right of the of the people (of West Virginia) to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”
    * The slippery slope Mr. Goldberg mentioned is the direction his talking points in regard to weapons bans he proposes are going. Let Connecticut pass a gun bill of its own to suit itself and its people!! Leave West Virginia alone!!
    Billy Cus, West Virginia
    Montani Semper Liberi
    P.S. Go Mountaineers!

  • pol_incorrect

    Bernie, you should listen to Prager. He is spot on http://www.bernardgoldberg.com/conscience-not-guns/ .

  • harley_52

    Sorry Bernie, you’re a nice enough guy, but you don’t have any idea what you’re talking about here. You’ve fallen for the political term “assault weapon” and the boogeyman “semi-automatic weapon.” Go back to discussing left-wing journalists where you intellectually belong.

  • leigh39

    Bernie, I can agree with what you have written, but I would add that there should be armed security in every school in our country. Either a police officer or private security, or a well trained teacher or faculty member. Because, we can ban some semi-automatic weapons and big magazines and try and improve our sorry mental health system in this country, but the truth is, very unfortunately that this will happen again. A sick individual will use another type of gun, build a bomb, use a knife, whatever they can find.

  • http://twitter.com/medbob Bob Kellum

    “But no reasonable person can make the case any longer that civilians need semi-automatic weapons and clips that hold 100 bullets.”

    Yes, I am a reasonable person, and yes we do need those weapons.
    The purpose of the Second Amendment is not only personal protection, but also deterrence of tyranny. We keep making the conversation about these mass killings as being about the guns. It’s really about the disparity of power. These predators seek the power of life and death over their victims. Their sick need to exert control impacts other people’s right to Life and Liberty.
    The problem is not the availability of powerful weapons, but the probability that their disparity will be countered. Time after time, in places that are NOT “gun free zones”, protectors have either drawn down on, or shot perpetrators. These typically don’t make the headlines as the problem is quickly taken care of. Sometimes the animal is able to kill several until the protector gets on the spot. Invariably the protector who has trained of his own volition, and given much thought to his use of deadly force ahead of time, is quickly victorious over the intruder.
    In any crowd, it only takes 4 individuals with concealed carry handguns to take down a perp, even if three are shot. The answer is NOT to tie the hands of those who protect, it’s to encourage the responsible carriage of firearms with a frequency that all crowds have a few.
    Usually it only takes one…

  • Greg

    Another gun banner jumps on the bandwagon and pushes legislation which will have a minimal effect, if any, while curtailing the rights of the law abiding. Mr. Goldberg is essentially telling gun owners “We’ve heard the arguments, now shut up and take it while we shove yet more onerous rules down your throat.”

    One definition of crazy is the insistance on trying the same thing and expecting a different result. The assault weapons ban has been tried before and had no appreciable effect on gun crime. Maybe we should consider curtailing the first amendment right that allows Mr. Goldberg the freedom to attack the rights of so many of the very people that put him where he is today.

  • Joel

    “No reasonable person, and that includes millions of gun owners, wants to repeal the Second Amendment – though I suspect more than a few liberals would like to if they could.” Several US senators do hold this position. They have stated as much. I am not saying that they’re reasonable, but they do hold positions of power and authority, something worth noting.

    “But no reasonable person can make the case any longer that civilians need semi-automatic weapons and clips that hold 100 bullets.” 1. Is the societal test one of “need.” Do people “need” Porsches? No? Then a ban is okay. Do people “need” flat screen televisions? Do individuals really “need” freedom of speech? Freedom of religion? Property rights?

    2. The coming legislation will not draw the line at 100 bullets. I’ll buy you dinner if it does.

  • jondos

    Are you serious? Law abiding people should have to give up their gun rights, so the law breakers can continue on with their lives? Do you know how many guns are obtained illegally every day in every big city in this country? In Chicago, where there are very strict guns laws, people are murdered by the dozens every weekend by ILLEGAL GUNS! And nobody is screaming about getting rid of ILLEGAL GUNS! Everyone is yelling about making new laws that will also be broken by LAW BREAKERS. Come on use your head a little more because your analysis is failing right before our eyes all over this country! We need to address the problem of why people are growing up with a desire to kill, be it in large numbers or small! Why is it so satisfying for some to take the lives of others? Yeah, it is ugly and difficult, but for society’s sake, very necessary. Eventually we will need to have an HONEST APOLITICAL DISCUSSION ABOUT THIS PROBLEM!

  • Imablogger

    Pass another law to ban guns and then we will do something
    about the mentally ill? Where have I heard this before?

    Oh yeah, let’s pass another tax hike, effective immediately, and then we will get around to reducing spending later…over a 10 year period.

  • pol_incorrect

    Mr Goldberg, I generally agree with your points of view but on this one you are 100 % wrong. You are giving psychiatry an accuracy it doesn’t have. There are millions of people that are weird, awkward, disgusting to look at who will never do or ever think about doing anything like this even if they say outrageous things. We are a nation of laws that cherishes due process for a reason because we know that as soon as you give a panel of unelected so called “experts” the power to decide who should be locked in and who shouldn’t, when these people have not committed a single crime, we will be a step closer to tyranny. Psychiatry has been used by the most vicious dictatorships as a tool to lock dissidents. There is a reason why the US Supreme Court has repeatedly said that the state cannot lock in anybody who is not a danger to himself of others. In its 1975 unanimous O’Connor v. Donaldson it eloquently said,

    “May the State confine the mentally ill merely to ensure them a living standard superior to that they enjoy in the private community? That the State has a proper interest in providing care and assistance to the unfortunate goes without saying. But the mere presence of mental illness does not disqualify a person from preferring his home to the comforts of an institution. Moreover, while the State may arguably confine a person to save him from harm, incarceration is rarely if ever a necessary condition for raising the living standards of those capable of surviving safely in freedom, on their own or with the help of family or friends. May the State fence in the harmless mentally ill solely to save its citizens from exposure to those whose ways are different? One might as well ask if the State, to avoid public unease, could incarcerate all who are physically unattractive or socially eccentric. Mere public intolerance or animosity cannot constitutionally justify the deprivation of a person’s physical liberty. In short, a State cannot constitutionally confine without more a non-dangerous individual who is capable of surviving safely in freedom by himself or with the help of willing and responsible family members or friends. ”

    Mental health, second amendment, the NRA… All are red herrings to avoid the elephant in the room, namely, that there has been a continuous deterioration of moral values in our society -moral relativism and banalization of evil- that is heavily correlated with the increase in frequency in these shootings. These mass shootings now happen even in Europe, where all the liberty killing laws liberals love exist. Time to initiate a national conversation to be sure, but not about the second amendment or civil commitment but about our rotten value system.

  • Liberty Card

    Oh man, here we go, when even conservatives decide that law and social policy should be based on the lowest, most criminal, insane among us, we are well down the road to dictatorship where government can decide to criminalize ANY thought or behavior it finds stupid, crazy, or threatening. Mr. Goldberg, how many law abiding citizens will you criminalize to catch the few who really deserve intervention?

  • Hockeytown

    I feel bad that 20 children were killed and grieve with the families, but millions of children are killed every year by the person who is supposed to protect them the most, their mother. If we can’t even respect the life of an innocent child who through no fault of their own ends up in a woman’s womb, how can we expect people to respect any life?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1134944411 George L Smith III

    Anti-gun activists, politicians and people who do not truely understand Firearms like to use the term “assault rifle” when defining semi-automatic rifles, because the term is ambiguous and it instills FEAR in the minds of the uninformed.
    The word “assault” is a verb implying an action, not a style of firearm.. take away the term assault and the fear of the item is diminished AND the action by politicians has changed from protecting you to stripping you of your rights..

    Some laws are an assault on our freedoms, doe’s that make the pen used in creating those laws an assault pen?

  • http://twitter.com/mopenshaw Michael Openshaw

    What this whole conversation is doing is emptying the gun stores of
    every semi-automatic rifle they have in inventory. By the time any law
    is passed, MILLIONS will be in the hands of private citizens. What are
    you going to do; try to confiscate them? Good luck on that.

    That genie is out of the bottle. Mental health is actually the
    EASIER issue to address. And it is the CAUSE of these mass murders; the
    implement is NOT.

  • TheSchaef

    “But no reasonable person can make the case any longer that civilians need semi-automatic weapons and clips that hold 100 bullets.”

    No “100-bullet clips” were used in this attack, and when the Aurora shooter tried to use one, it jammed his gun and he had to ditch it.

    Also, I’m not sure you understand what is meant by a “semi-automatic weapon”. A REVOLVER is a semi-automatic weapon. Are you saying 40-year-old handguns are weapons of mass destruction?

    “The First Amendment guarantees all of us freedom of speech. But we can’t shout fire in a crowded theater if there is no fire, and we can’t libel decent people with made up stories designed to hurt them.”

    Right! And the Second Amendment guarantees us the right to keep and bear arms. But we can’t harm or kill people with them for any reason other than defense of self or property.

    You’re right to say that the discussion about the mentally ill is both the more difficult and the more necessary one. But to deprive people of freedoms just to get the discussion out of the way is poor stewardship of our society. We shouldn’t pass laws haphazardly just to do “something” or to move on to “more important” things.

    • Cindy

      Very well said!

  • Patriot Vet

    ” If we ban assault weapons, they say, what will the authorities ban next.”

    Assault weapons are already banned under the 1934 Act. The weapon wasn’t an assault weapon – it wasn’t fully automatic! I wish that people who opine on this would learn the difference.

  • echosyst

    We had an “assault weapons” ban and mass killings were occurring at a higher rate when it was in effect. Goldberg’s slow return to the left continues. There is no way the left will be satisfied until they disarm us.

  • http://twitter.com/SgtPolite Chance Boudreaux

    Any reasonable person can make the case for semi-automatics. The 2nd amendment was solely about citizens protecting themselves from the Government’s Army. Semi-autos are the bare minimum to due that job. You are still FAR MORE LIKELY to die in a car or plane or by a Doctor’s Mistake, then get killed by a gun. Get a grip people.

  • bobbybstrd

    I’m such a “zealot” for wanting to protect innocent human life that did nothing except be conceived…. but what we need to do is confront why our CULTURE is raising murderous scumbags like the coward last week. It has nothing to do with guns. It has to do with the absolute cancer that is liberalism and what it has done to respecting human life (ie. those innocent children you think it’s just fine to murder in the womb as choice…and I’m a zealot for defending). Your logic is astounding.

  • http://profiles.google.com/rob5136 Rob Crawford

    Because no one was every violent before TV and video games.

    • TheSchaef

      or guns.

  • http://profiles.google.com/rob5136 Rob Crawford

    Easier to punish the innocent than confront the dangerous.


  • joespook

    I’d rather Mr. Goldberg think I’m paranoid than risk losing my freedom. I was never paranoid when there was a Republican in the White House. I was only cautiously paranoid when Mr. Clinton was the President. But I fear what a Marxist like Mr. Obama will do.

  • mnsunshine

    Laws will not stop violence. People need to start cleaning up this society, commit to the family, protect and help the mentally ill, and if necessary, have armed security at schools. Why are there no steel doors that lock on classrooms? Law abiding citizens will never commit these crimes. It will be the mentally ill and criminals that will never obey laws! Get a grip and attack the root of the problems, not just pass feel good laws. The 2nd amendment was written for a very good reason. God Bless and Merry Christmas. May we learn the example given us of God’s Love.

  • gr8gunz in AZ

    I am so sick of hearing people saying “can’t yell fire in a crowded theater” to justify stupid laws and attacks on the 2nd amendment. Can anyone describe an assault rifle to me? Do you banners even know what you are supporting when you support the assault weapons ban? Bernie and O’Reilly know as much about firearms as Diane Feinstein and Bill Clinton knew in 94.

    • Wheels55

      Exactly. Nobody seems to be able to define assault weapons except that they look like what the military uses. The thing about large capacity clips seems like a good ban until one thinks about how easy it would be to carry a bunch of loaded regular sized clips.
      These sick people who shoot unarmed people do so because they are just that – unarmed. They want to kill large amounts of people before they get arrested or shoot themselves.
      When we all decided to deal with drunk driving because it kills, we didn’t ban cars. We deal with the sick individual that has a drinking problem. Same deal here.

    • ARJ127

      The “can’t yell fire” argument is about responsibility. Do you as a gun owner wish to assume responsibility for your weapons? If not, you should be disarmed.

  • DebbieO

    Three points, Bernie. One, the damage Lanza caused could have been wrought with a handgun. Banning any type of rifle does not solve that. Two, the day Reagan emptied the public mental institutions and changed the regulations that say who and how people get institutionalized was the day this stuff started happening. Check the history on that. No, we don’t want to point at a neighbor and say, “He’s nuts.” Be we do need parents and individuals in schools with the resources to assess and house potentially dangerous people away from doing harm to themselves or other people. Last, when events like these are no longer reported so widely they will stop. Every single person who has committed atrocities like these has wanted, perhaps among other motives, the attention of the nation. These shooters are crying out desperately for help and see that committing something worse than the guy before is going to get the notice of all of us. Yes, we are all mourning the losses of people at the hands of these crazed gunmen, but who else is watching the coverage and thinking subliminally or consciously, “How could I top this?”

  • William Lester

    Mr. Goldberg,

    I truly thought you were a breath of fresh, thoughtful air in contrast to the MSM smog. This article clearly shows I was wrong in that opinion. This is not an issue of party politics. It IS an issue of Constitutional law. Not only is the Second Amendment under attack, so too will be our rights under the Fourth, Fifth and Tenth Amendments.

    But if you must drag party politics into this awful mess, please understand that strong support of the Second Amendment is one of the very few ways in which Republicans differentiate themselves from Democrats at the national level. That is why so many of us hold our noses as we cast votes for GOP candidates who otherwise hold little to no appeal. If the Republicans follow the strategy you suggest, bank on a the birth of a strong Third Party that will make the GOP irrelevant in short order.

    As is your newsletter now to me.

  • pennythought

    The government can and should limit the availability of weapons of mass destruction. This includes bombs, biological/chemical weapons, and assault rifles. Thank you, Mr. Goldberg, for explaining why this shouldn’t be so hard.

    • n2sooners

      Define what makes an “assault rifle” more deadly than any other rifle of the same caliber.

    • Wheels55

      You can be assaulted with just a handgun. Calling something an assault weapon does not mean it really is. My experience is that these assault rifles do not hurt anyone until a sicko picks it up. Ban the sickos.

    • bobbybstrd

      Well it was a good thing bombs were illegal when Timothy McVeigh wanted to murder in Oklahoma City…. moron.

  • Mark_in_OKC

    Look, Huckabee was asked why did God let this happen. His reply that we have taken God out of schools was right on. Sure this shooter didn’t care, but if he was raised (in an era where the NEA says these kids are ours while in class and not the parents) with just some basic background about our founding fathers reliance on scripture and God’s leading, then his formative years could be based on TRUTH with less focus on self.

  • deebar

    When Bernie and Billy O get rid of their armed guards and Ocrap takes the guns away from his Secret Service then I might consider , Naw won’t happen .
    This whole discussion is nonsense except for those that thinks our Government are good guys .

    I served this Country and have been a pretty darn good citizen and I’ll be damned if the Gov is going to control me anymore than they are and that’s a lot . My assault rifle is for a good purpose and not for ill .

    Did Bernie serve or did Billy O serve . I’m sure they did not . My Government right or wrong doesn’t hold water for me anymore .

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5TSYHINUMX6SLRIIVWTQAYPKCY Danny's New Account

    Goldberg, you need to stop confusing rights with privileges. Do you understand what unalienable means? Rights are absolute!

  • http://www.facebook.com/martin.monti.94 Martin Monti

    I think we need to tighten things up, but what is an assault weapon? Isn’t this a made up term? I know liberal politicians love putting labels on things, but do they arrive at the term based on how menacing the weapon looks? I don’t trust our leaders to get his right

  • D Odom

    David O

    Mr. Goldberg, I want to respectively tell you that the Fox News comment regarding “Taking God out of schools”, etc., as you know, was on the Mike Huckabee show. However, he did not say or mean that that would have prevented the Connecticut incident! He was also asked by Neil Cavuto “where was God?” Mike Huckabee simply indicated that when society takes, and is trying to take even now, God out of the public sector and start viewing “moral things” as entirely relative then you get a society with an ever increasing relativistic view of the morals that this country was founded on. Therefore, Godly things and moral things take a backseat in scoiety. There are no “black and white” principles but rather only “gray” areas. So, to say on Bill Orielly that the right participated just like the left in bringing politics in too early was not correct as it relates to your “Taking God out, etc.” comment! I’m sure you may have received comments from some on the right. However, that is not “Fox News Channel” as you indicated on Bill’s show!

    And what about the thousands kileed by cars every year? Or the thousands of abortions every year or tens of millions since Roe vs Wade. A little perspective please!

    • bigo

      “Right On David”

  • http://twitter.com/TuckerPeterson_ Tucker Peterson

    Also . The mental illness will only get worst . Becaused the last twenty years kids are being drugged in order to pay attention in school . Who knows what the long term effects are .

  • http://twitter.com/TuckerPeterson_ Tucker Peterson

    And another thing . Bill thinks it doesn’t matter what kind of guns we have . If the government wants them they would just send in troops and nothing we could do about it . Hey Bill . Another lesson for you . The troops are our sons and daughters not yours and the government . They wouldn’t do it . And the government knows it . But I guess Bill doesn’t . Or Bernie .

  • http://twitter.com/TuckerPeterson_ Tucker Peterson

    Saw you on Bills show tonight . And you told a out right lie about the comments and bloggers here . Made us all out to be nuts . Thanks a lot Bernard ! You or Bill or anybody else have yet to bring up how guns save lives . Maybe it’s because all of you are about as worthless as teets on a boar hog . You talking heads refuse to believe . That guns save people’s lives many times over . Or did you talk about the comment on here about the 38 people killed in 1927 by a nut case at a school . Yeah , Bernie nuts did t start appearing a week ago . They have always been here . You thru your bloggers under the bus . But that’s what oppertunity does . You talking heads are just the stick that turns in a bucket of crap . Nor did you or Bill bring up the fact that the mass killing occur in gun free zones . Why do you all refuse the truth . It’s the lack of protection of gun s that give these mental ill nut a green light on where to carry out there slaughter .

  • Jimbo

    You cannot propose a ban on semi-automatic rifles while also claiming to support the Second Amendment, as you claimed on O’Reilly. The Constitution does not guarantee the right to own muskets and pea shooters. The document states “the right to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” Goldberg appears to be incapable of comprehending simple, declarative sentences.

    The First Amendment analogy is also weak. Owning a gun is not a destructive act, unlike yelling fire in a theater. A better analogy would be that people do not have the right to use guns harm others, just as they do not have the right to use speech to harm others.

    Just have the courage to state that you do not believe in the Second Amendment. It is still a free country. You have that right. But do not use this nonsensical doublethink logic, claiming to hold two mutually exclusive opinions at the exact same time.

    As for the effectiveness of strict gun laws, how well has that worked in Germany, Norway, Russia, and other countries in which similar events have happened? Also, how difficult is it for Americans to get heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine?

    Goldberg is obviously an extremely naive, sheltered elitist. The fact is that social order can breakdown and any society, be it from an economic collapse, a natural disaster, or a variety of other unforeseen circumstances. The government is incapable of protecting the people in such situations. So is an 18th Century musket.

  • stever

    I just heard Bernie on Fox say that those who link this tragedy to the removal of Bible reading and prayer from the public schools and replacing them with metal detectors and locks should not be making that connection. I think that first and foremost, a time of mourning should ensue without the blame-gaming that will inevitably follow. That said, I don’t think you can avoid the obvious relationship between teaching our children that they are the result of random events amounting to slime + time = you and me, and think there will be no repercussions.

  • ShillersGhost

    With all due respect Bernie….. bite me. I came into this world kicking and screaming, covered in someone elses blood. I have no reticence about leaving it the same way. Fascism in America won’t come sweeping in one big surge like it did in Germany. Our traditions are to strong and ingrained. But they will try to implment it piece by piece all in the name of “public safety.”

  • RebeccaK

    I want you to know, that I am a young, female, medical student who voted for Obama and considers herself a democrat, and sir, you speak honest truth. If the GOP started talking smart like this, they may just have my vote come 2016.

    • JmThms

      The GOP won’t get your vote and you know it. As has been observed before, its ironic how so many of our most highly educated and presumably smart citizens can be so dumb as to be Liberals. Oh well.

    • Guest

      It’s ashame, so much edumaction, yet still so dumb.

    • Guest

      It’s ashame, so much edumacation but still so dumb.

  • http://www.facebook.com/walter.mattson.39 Walter Mattson

    Bernie: I’ve read enough of the comments to now put in my two cents worth. I hope you read and absorb all of the comments. They are good and make sense. In fact, nearly all that I read think you are out of your field of expertise. Nearly all the commentators state that they oppose your analysis on this issue. I enjoy your site with your comments and those of all of your bloggers. They also make sense most of the time. I agree with your final statement of “Let’s end the conversation about guns”. However, You are completely wrong about assault guns. All guns are guns, nothing more and nothing less. The assault is the person who uses the gun to commit an assault. You are not alone. Most of the media think in the same way. Why is that? To me it is that most of you have no experience with guns and so you naturally distrust anyone who does. You have stated that the mentally ill are a major problem but you just can’t leave that as the major issue. To you , It has to be the gun and the only cure is to make some more laws restricting the sale or type of gun manufactured so you and others can say a positive advancement has been made in reducing these type attacks on defenseless kids or people. Well, you are wrong. Restricting any type of gun will not reduce violence.

    I had a discussion with my village councilman today. He stated that the village placed signs in their lobby which prohibited bringing in firearms into the building. In fact, it also applied to police officers who are asked to come into a meeting. It reminded me of the shooter in the Colorado theater who went out of his way to find a theater that prohibited guns so he knew that he was assured of success in his attack without any counter attack from a civilian or attendant. I mentioned to the council man that the village should have placed signs stating that all personnel in the village government have received training in fire arms and that the area was well armed with 9mm and 357’s. Don’t you think that would be more effective?

  • http://www.facebook.com/beachgrljl Beachgrl Jl


  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1101131149 Scott Demonte

    Bernie, you are wrong on assault weapons but right on linking mental illness to background checks.

    Rifles of all kinds are rarely used in gun crimes, period. About 5% of violent crimes with guns use an assault weapon according to FBI stats. These mass shootings are terrible but you want to ban a weapon that is rarely used in these crimes. Our of the last 14 mass shooting s 4 involved assault weapons and 10 used handguns. In fact handguns are used, according to the FBI, in 90% of gun crimes. In addition there were 5.4M crimes in 2010 and only 8% used a firearm.

    Look these things are horrible but if you merely listen to the media and the Brady people you would think millions are being mowed down by guns daily. However the facts reveals the opposite is true. Less than 10,000 people die from guns annually, which is why Bloomberg grouped 4 yrs of deaths into his hateful speech today, and guns deaths rank 108th in terms of cause of death in America. Cars kill 46,000 ppl and we aren’t banning them. Heck, in America sypilus kills 36,000 a yr and ranks 36th in causes of death!!

    We dint blame cars or alcohol manufacturer s for drunk driving we blame the driver who chose to kill. What’s the difference between that and guns? You may hate assault weapons but they are not responsible for gun violence as the data proves. Also every gun was based off of a military weapon which makes all guns assault weapons or military grade, even though civilian models are very different.

    I like my AR15 for home defence, target shooting and just plinking. The fact is these guns merely represent the advancement of technology. You want to limit magazine capacity I am listening. Gun show background checks? OK. Link mental health records? Sure. But ban a gun that is hardly used in violent crime because you don’t see the need? No way. Be careful or this nondrinker will start blaming you for all the problems alcohol causes.

  • phillipcsmith

    I agree. Let us take assault weapons out of circulation and do all we can to make sure that those in existence are removed and destroyed. Perhaps the government can offer a tax incentive so that such weapons are turned over to the military for use in protecting us.

    • n2sooners

      So what do you think makes an “assault weapon” more deadly than any other gun of the same caliber?

    • bobbybstrd

      Wow. You’re a whole special class of stupid.

      • phillipcsmith

        I may be stupid because the gun issue is so complex and I really don’t have all the answers on this issue. An important change that could help considerably would be to work toward having every child raised in a good home with loving parents. This would reduce the number of potentially dangerous children.

  • http://www.facebook.com/thomas.mathias.908 Thomas Mathias

    I see we have another one of the real patriots willing to give up liberty for a little (no) security.

    Bernie read US vs Miller. Pay particular attention to the section where the court ruled civilians are allowed to own guns in common use of the times. Including military firearms. But I guess you are more concerned with feel good laws than the U.S. Constitution.

    Maybe you’re the one that is out of touch with American people. That’s understandable considering your age and the crowd you associate with.

  • Jaitop

    Schools and colleges should require screening tests for all students and follow testing for those who exhibit personality disorders including counseling. Schools should have an emergency group made up of teachers to handle any emergencies. Something similar to hospitals when they call “code blue Or red” depending of the emergency. Some members of this team should be allowed to use guns, tazers or any other means to stop a killer or violent individual. Another issue is a reevaluation of the educational curriculum in the schools. Children go to schools to develop their full potential. The current approach is to develop their cognitive skills and ignore their emotional and spiritual development. The whole individual is made up of several areas of development. We are not just bodies or cognitive beings. We have evolved into more complex individuals. We have emotional, spiritual, cognitive and physical needs. A child should be educated to reach the fullest development in all areas without being afraid the school is teaching religion.

  • BigCountry77

    The recent Oregon Mall shooting and the Newtown, CT we saw that both killers used guns that they had stolen. No law can stop that. In Newtown, CT the killer was shooting at point blank range, it didn’t matter if he had an AR-15 or a .22 pistol, the damage would have been the same. Does it matter if you die from a .223 caliber or a .22 caliber?? Sadly, very little can be done to stop this type of evil. My heart goes out to the families in CT.
    Mr. Goldberg, with all do respect, we cannot do anything to loners or anti social kids that have not broken any laws. To your point about the slippery slope, I have several friends from Cuba who never thought a government would take their guns, especially when the USA supported a guy named Fidel Castro. I am no fanatic, but you can see where people, especially in Florida, can have those thoughts.

  • Doc Ox

    Bernie, I’ve watched Fox news and The Factor almost every night since the election of 2000 and have generally enjoyed watching the segments you have been on in the past. BUT – I am simply dumber for having watched you tonight. I don’t think that you understand what a semi-automatic firearm is, or that they have been around for over 100 years. By calling AR-15’s “assault weapons” even though they are functionally more similar to most hunting firearms than military arms, you have conceded the argument to the crazy liberals. Shouldn’t journalists take their 1rst amendment rights more seriously and do a little homework before they get on national television and give their opinions based on political correctness? Bill has talked a couple of times in the past few months about the “gun show loophole” where you can buy fully automatic weapons at gun shows like picking up a loaf of bread at the local grocery store. Really????? That should be in the Reality Check segment. Others on Fox keeps talking about the “powerful” .223 round when most variations of it are not considered sufficient for deer hunting. Why can’t Fox News hire an expert on firearms to interview on air like they do with so many other areas? It is painfully obvious that none of the anchors or reporters have any firearms knowledge. Sorry to be so harsh, but I take our 2nd amendment rights very seriously as you should also. Maybe rights you hold important may not matter to other people – should you lose them because someone else is ignorant as to how important they really are in a free nation? How would you feel about your 1rst amendment rights if the government dictated what kind of topics you could cover?

  • n2sooners

    Hey Bernie, why don’t you start off by telling us what makes a weapon an “assault weapon” and then describe to us how that makes it more deadly than a non “assault weapon” of the same caliber?

    BTW, do you really believe civilians shouldn’t be able to own semi-automatic weapons, or is your story just poorly worded? And I’d also love to see this 100 round clip you think should be banned as well.

    • mr_ditters

      Haha right? 100 round clip LOL

  • http://twitter.com/surlyrevenant Ken

    Absolutely NOTHING will change until millions of ARMED Americans take to the streets and MAKE changes. Look around. Read the census projections. Watch our politicians fight each other to woo voters who are STEALING your children’s birthright. Traditional America is on it’s death bed. And we’re too civilized to protest. Besides, someone may call us NAMES if we do.
    Our country was CREATED by armed citizens. It was DEFENDED by armed citizens. And it will DIE, for LACK of armed citizens.

  • cigarbaron

    Burnie I don’t see the “Why ban them” in your analysis. you say “But no reasonable person can make the case any longer that civilians
    need semi-automatic weapons and clips that hold 100 bullets.” The reason is the founders meant for us to be = to the military so the government would respect and fear their citizens. It makes the law abiding citizen part of the checks and balances. My question is Why would any reasonable person rear away at that?

    • mr_ditters

      Because Bernie believes that all of “you people” are paranoid and that there is no way that the US government could become a despotic tyranny.

      He is trying to present himself as some sort of accommodating/fair minded guy when he doesn’t even know what an assault weapon is and how it differs from other weapons or what it could be used for.

      He completely ignores statistical facts that an assault weapons ban would do nothing to curb mass shootings and that they are not even remotely the problem.

  • James Barnes

    Someone in our schools should be armed. No one has ever went into a gun show and started shooting, because they would last about 10 seconds. Liberals have sold the idea that a sign out side that says “no guns allowed” will protect our children

  • cigarbaron

    “Sturmgewehr = “storm rifle”

    This particular connotation of the word storm is = what we would call
    “assault” in modern times. I couldn’t say for sure, but I’d imagine it
    was just a change over time and translation. Like a game of telephone

    Sturmgewehr = “storm rifle”

    “storm rifle” = “assault rifle” (in a military sense)

    “assault rifle” = assault rifle (as a general term, with ignorance to connotation)

    assault rifle = “assault weapon” (presumed to be anti-civilian, as interpreted by the media)

    “assault weapon” = “evil high powered high capacity automatic assault
    weapon” (as interpreted from the media by the Politicians to further
    their own agendas.”

  • Ed_in_AZ

    Bernie, I’m with you. I own a handgun but can’t conceive of a reason to own a military assault weapon. All these comments about having guns to ward off an evil government is pretty extreme. Some restrictions to think about — all semi-automatic weapons should be secured with trigger locks or kept in a safe. Analogous to having to wear seat belts while driving or not having an open container of liquor in your car. Just common sense precautions to protect against idiots. And yes, I am a republican and a conservative.

    • mr_ditters

      I agree with the locks and safe thing. That is just common sense.

      However, I disagree with the evil government thing being extreme. Things can change for the worst very quickly. This country is in very deep. We owe more money than we can possibly pay off. We are printing money to pay our debt. We are entirely depending on foreign loans to sustain our consumption.

      How long before that bubble bursts? What happens when this house of cards comes crashing down? How many desperate, armed people will their be? This is not paranoia. This country has a lot of problems that are pretty much fatal diseases that our politicians refuse to treat. There are few reasons to be optimistic about our future.

  • cigarbaron

    If one has a desire to kill large numbers of small children one need only support abortion.

  • cigarbaron

    a well regulated militia is one that can work well with the Military or aagainst it.

  • cigarbaron

    People who support abortion should not be lecturing anyone about dead children.

    • William Custis Buffington

      People who propose bills for infanticide, abortion notwithstanding, are incredible in regard to any outrage or grief they may pretend

  • For fiscal sanity

    I agree. You will probably be chastised by many on the right for articulating this sensible position about guns. I mean: who needs “semi-automatic weapons and clips that hold 100 bullets”? I like to hear your opinion about the culture of senseless violence aided by some of the modern videos

  • http://www.facebook.com/phil.silverman.9 Phil Silverman

    Bernie, when you’re right, you’re right and your above piece is..RIGHT-ON. I almost never agree with you but thanks (this time :)

  • Bob Hadley

    xamI support the idea of a commission appointed to examine thiorougly the problem of mass murder and excessive violence. It should be bipartisan comprised of respected individuals not in the political arena. There should be no Holy Cows. Aspects of our culture that may evoke violence should be examined. The rights of gun owners and of the mentally ill against overlybroad measures should also be addressed thoroughly. Mental health figures, law enforcement, those in the teaching profession, and pertinent academics should all be thorougly consulted by the commission.

    The good thing that gun owners have is the U. S. Supreme Court’s interpretation of it. It serves as a base line for gun rights. It’s possible that the decision will be overturned, but it’s unlikely to happen anytime soon. Even if Sclia and Thomas, for example, were to retire soon and Pres. Obama appointed liberals in their place, the doctrine of Stare Decisis (that was probably the reason that Roe v. Wade was not overturned in the Casey abortion decision in the early 19902).

  • happtakytrails

    Before what happened last Friday, I always dismissed the people telling me that the govt. will take guns away from the citizens.
    After listening to the media and politicians, I know now that day is near.
    Even libs. like Bernie have come to the agreement to take guns away from American citizens that have not committed any crime.
    Bernie, you have fallen for the lefts trick. Just go all in and support Obama as King for life.
    You and Billy boy have the protection and means to live quite nicely.
    You should write another book. The title is Sell-Out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I guess you and Bob Costas had lunch.

  • DC Seal , Va.

    Bernie, I just saw you on O’Reilly. You are exactly right when you say that people want the assault weapons to protect themselves from government. You are even more on the money when it comes to the mental health issue. The problem is how to protect everyone. We pay enough taxes and there have been enough issues that there should be an armed presence at all schools. We are slowly having our great country turned into a large Israel. The Israelie’s live with this every day. They are the toughest people in the world and know for a fact they have to protect themselves. Ask them if they feel they need an assualt weapon nearby.

    May God bless those children and adults who were lost in this terrible incident. I was so put off by Obama dancing around politics during the memorial service it made me sick. Pass all the gun control laws you can, while we are at it lets ban all those nasty old drugs and. Sadly we all watched as a grandstanding President acted like he is the only one who has had a bad expierence in office. George Bush was ridiculed for maintaining his composure in front of those children on 9/11. He did not try to sensationalize it for his own political agenda. We as a country stood together and moved forward.
    Please President Obama, what about Ft. Hood and what about the Benghazi dodging issue we have seen? Yes Sir, we should be able to focus on more than one thing at a time. Mr. President, our states have police forces and we have the FBI. How about focusing on the “Fiscal Cliff” and who you are going to shove the blame on for Bengahzi? Our law enforcement agencies will take care of their jobs, how about backing off on the “Show Boating”.

  • rjgood1

    The truth is that an “assault” rifle is no more dangerous than a semi-automatic hunting rifle. They just have a different external design. Most deer rifles fire cartridges with more stopping power than so-called assault rifles. Banning assault rifles is a symbolic gesture to satisfy the desire to take action but will have no real impact on the problem.

  • Frogman

    Just saw you on O’Reilly. To me it’s not so much about “the government” (not yet anyway). I simply do not want to be outgunned by the vermin who invade my house intent on torturing, raping and murdering me and my family. My shotgun holds six shells. What if that’s insufficient?

  • http://twitter.com/Erudite_Enigma Michael Chavez

    Really? You have the nerve to voice an opinion on O’Reilly and then tell people to keep their letters?? That is rather elitist to tell people that your opinion is beyond reproach and that others cannot challenge your position.

    You have lost all credibility about you criticism of the mainstream media with your condescending comments.

    Oh, and let me be very clear, I make NO BONES about the fact that the purpose of the Second Amendment is about a check against government. It is NOT about hunting. There is no conspiracy by the “right” to hide the fact that “assault weapons” are specifically the types of arms that are constitutionally protected for the purpose of protecting this country from aggressors foreign and domestic.

    In closing, I will challenge you to a debate any time any where. If you don’t want your opinion challenged, then keep it to yourself, otherwise grow a pair and face the music.

  • Eileen

    Being mentally ill and not having help is very sad.This young man’s mother was desperate for help for her son and there was none.Guns need to be controlled that’s for sure.Huckabee on fox was also right taking God out of schools is not good.People blame God, it was evil what happened in newton. Having abortions is killing also,and to many of us is very wrong.So America has many problems and it’s time for action now.

  • John l

    First I want to applaud your non political comments about gun violence in the wake of this senseless tragedy.I am a country boy from SC I’ve been a hunter since I was a young lad and I have never owned an assault rifle. What is really scary to me is there someone with the young gunmans same mental instabilities who has access to or knowledge to construct a weapon of more mass destruction than a gun….

  • http://twitter.com/jm3156 John Maute

    Well said; the real issues in this tragedy are realistic school security measures and metal illness, not guns. True, it wasn’t the smartest thing keeping all those firearms in the house with an unstable person around. Also, stories are coming out that Nancy Lanza may have been a prepper. Is it possible Adam thought the apocolipse was here?

  • BC

    I matter what happens, the media will praise the President and blame Repulicans.

  • Chris

    Bernard, I have bought all your books and consider myself a fan of yours, but you could not be more wrong on your call to ban “assault” weapons, as you call them. No reasonable person needs semi automatic weapons, you say? Ask anyone caught in the bowels of the aftermath after Katrina or Sandy, and I am sure you will find more than one person who owes their life to one of these tools. I also love your example of “100” rounds as a baseline of what you consider excessive. This is a misrepresentation of what most AR-15 owners use is practical target or hunting situations, and frankly there is a big difference between the 0 rounds you find acceptable and 100. Let us not forget that the vast majority of guns today including hand guns are semi automatic. Let us also forget that gun “aesthetics” played a large role in what guns Clinton banned. Let us also not forget Switzerland has the world’s largest civilian army (armed with semi automatics), and they keep gun murder rates lower than Britain. But instead of talk about these fact, you play right into the Liberal’s hand of dividing the gun community into segments. It is a clever trick the Liberals use on the tax front. “No, we’re just going to tax the OTHER guy.” Like the Gadsen Flag says, “Join or Die!” Thanks for promoting their agenda, Bernard. I will nto be reading your next book…

  • mr_ditters

    An assault weapons ban would do nothing, NOTHING, to stop something like this. I’ll say it again. It will do nothing to stop this. The only reason to ban assault weapons is to score political points and pretend like they are doing something to solve the problem. Meanwhile, another shooter will try to set the record for most murders next month.

    I doubt Goldberg even knows what an assault weapon is. There are other rifles out there that wouldn’t be classified as an assault weapon that are more deadly, but the assault weapons look scary and have a scary name.

    Never mind the fact that the vast majority of gun related homicides involve handguns and less than 3 % involve assault weapons. This article is all reactionary fluff.

    I just saw Bernie on O’Reilly complaining about how people were jumping on him about guns and say nothing about mental health. Maybe its because what he says about assault weapons is just the same reactionary ill informed self-righteous unrealistic garbage that the left spew.

  • Vicki

    I have a brother who is mentally ill. However since Ronald Reagan closed so many of the the mental health facilities in CA there is no where for the mentally ill to go. They are put into a 72 hour hold and then released back onto the streets to wonder homeless. It is sad and very frustrating for family members who can not get any help for a loved one who is mentally ill.

  • Jeff

    Bernie you really blew it this evening. Talking to O’reilly and saying that the right was just as bad as the left in using the shooting for their agenda………you just couldn’t get the name Huckabee out of your mouth. Bill was asking and you looked as though you were having a gall bladder attack. Shame on your for holding back.

  • http://www.facebook.com/michael.oulie Michael Oulie

    I just saw you on O’Reilly, you were both wrong about oppressive governments and the 2nd Amendment. There are few guarantees that American government can’t become oppressive and I would think that after the last 11 years you would be aware of that.. The right to bear arms is meaningless when you neuter it by removing access to weapons effective for insurgency. We’ve always had access to assault weapons, both pre- and post-ban, and haven’t had this difficulty until recently. What’s changed!?!?!?!?

    • mr_ditters

      Yeah apparently neither of those guys is a student of history.

      A radical shift from a republic to a dictatorship can happen in a generation. All it takes is a few crises to strain democracy and for a quick fix people throw away their rights and centralize power on one individual. That is how democracies always die and it can happen very quickly.

      With the overwhelming problems this country has it is entirely possible, e.g. massive debt (which we never be able to pay off). No matter what pundits say, a huge economic collapse is entirely possible. Not to mention enemies around the world trying to blow us up.

  • jimmcveigh

    no more .223s for SWAT.

  • Randy

    Darn it Bernie, Connecticut has the fifth strictest gun laws in the nation and those laws didn’t stop this. It’s not the guns. Its the mentally ill person and the irresponsible person that kept guns in the same home as the mentally ill person.

  • http://twitter.com/AnthonyJBarton Anthony J Barton

    I think we should ban the president from going on vacation till he fixes the mess he got us in.

  • costhetadtheta

    Bernie, I’m one of the zealots you’re referring to that believes Abortion should always be illegal. Just like Paul Ryan and many other Pro Life advocates. If you were like me, and believed life was sacred regardless or the circumstances, you wouldn’t condemn a person to die because he or she was spawned from a criminal act. I think rape is awful, I wouldn’t claim otherwise, but I don’t think rape should lead to murder either. In my view you either accept that some rights are absolute and inalienable, among those life & liberty. Or you equivocate and betray their sanctity. My heart broke on Friday. But 20 children dead from a madman is what we saw on TV. There were 3,700 more that died that went unreported.

    • mr_ditters

      The morality and injustice of abortion is unchanged and is independent of how the person is conceived. It is still the taking of innocent human life. Its still killing a human being. Its still unethical and unjust. Its just as unjust as rape or incest.

      So according to the know-it-all Bernie Goldberg, if someone thinks that its wrong to take a human being in the beginning stages of life and carve them up into little pieces and flush them down a sink…they are a zealot.

      I guess all Christians and especially Catholics are “zealots”.

      We should start calling him Bernie Wasserman Goldberg.

  • linda from MS

    As always- spot on.

  • Brian

    There can be no “gun control” that doesn’t include modifying the second amendment, it says “the peoples right to bear arms can not be infringed”. Any federal law controlling gun ownership is an infringement imho.and ignoring any part of the Constitution, especially the Bill of Rights, is showing disrespect for the entire document. Something as central to our history and culture should be subject to the rigors of passing a Constitutional Amendment.

  • Ro Gal

    Goldberg, You missed the mark (no pun intended) this time by a mile!

    Cars Bernie! When operated by mentally impaired people (drunks) become a weapon!
    1) In 2010, 211 children were killed in drunk driving crashes. Out of those 211 deaths, 131 (62 percent) were riding with the drunk driver.

    2) In 2011, 9,878 people died in drunk driving crashes – one every 53 minutes

    3) Drunk driving costs the United States $132 billion a year.

    So before you wave your Goldberg wand of wisdom, look at the real problem. Because semi-auto weapons have been available to the public for years, the prime decay of the nuclear family(and specifically the youth) began in 1981 with the advent of MTV and violent video games.

  • artlouis

    Banning guns of any type simply will not work. It is a sure bet that once assault weapons are banned, there will continue to be mass shootings with assault weapons.

  • Frank

    very good analyis Burnie

  • Stephen Boone

    Hello??? Reality calling. About those “crazies” that wonder about Mr. Obama’s birthplace?? It was the DEMOCRAT CONTROLLED SENATE that called BOTH candidates in right at the beginning of the 2008 campaign. Mr. McCain was NOT, repeat NOT born in the United States. That was Mr. MCCAIN, not Mr. Obama. SO… since McCain ABSOLUTELY was not born inside the USA and Mr. Obama’s father was a now you see me now you don’t Kenyan who apparently met Barry’s Mom in Hawaii it seemed simple enough. Why don’t BOTH of you all drop by and show us what you got. I’ll show you mine, you show me yours, both of you show the Senate. All over, right? Now ONE of the candidates popped by , showed, explained, even produced the relative court case etc. The OTHER candidate did NONE of those things. Later, silly almost maybe kind of documents showed up on the web. WHY?? WHY not just take care of it like McCain did? Why did we all get to compare the grades that GWBush and Gore and Kerry made in college and law school, but we STILL have never seen any grades of any college or law school from Barry. Oh, BTW, I am NOT being silly about the “Barry” bit. The only school records I HAVE seen for Obama are from grade school in KENYA and he is registered as “Barry” Obama on those records. I suppose to help him “fit in” because people in KENYA would have said Barrack was a “funny sounding name”, right???? Incidentally, IF and I would NOT fall dead from shock, IF it turns out someday that Pres. O WAS born in Kenya he would STILL be a legal candidate. Barrack SR. was still married, so US courts could and would simply say that makes BHO’s Mom an unmarried VISITOR under the current age of majority. He would get his MOM’S citizenship same as any tourist raped in a gondola in Venice or whilst visiting the Eiffel tower. OK??? Happy??

  • http://twitter.com/BruceGoshtac Bruce Davey

    Sorry, had spent 20 mins typing my views on this matter and this stupid comments section ate my comments…

  • http://twitter.com/BruceGoshtac Bruce Davey

    B Davey

  • Mari Jo O’Neill

    II have read and lisened to all of the stories about this tragedy ay Sandy Hook School and I kknew from the beginning that Guns would be the topic and not the person sho commits the crime. Maybe assault weapons should be banned I don’t think that solves the problem, If a person wants to committ an evil act they will find a way. All of the talk about Obama care and free birth control and not one conversation about mental health treatments, or how to treat mental health patients. Is there any part of the Obamcare 2700 plus pages that zeroes in on this stigma attached to mental health. People need to be aware before an act of violence if a person is unstable. The liberals always want to target the guns, and legal gun owners do not committ these evil acts. The culture in this country promotes certain types of violence, with movies, video games, rap music and no one seems to care about these types of “video events” that kids are watching with or without parental consent. So where do we go?????? Making more laws about guns is useless and I cannot even imagine how many laws are on the books now that are not enforced. Society today is people nnot taking reponsibility for their acts and not enough punishment when they are caught. Someone need to come up with some type of solution.

  • bearmountain

    Bernie: a semi automatic is NOT an assault weapon. Assault weapons are currently banned. So if I have a “FIREARM” that has a “MAGAZINE that is capable of holding 20 rounds is that an “assault weapon?” NO!! If we allow this group of crazies in power to restrict anything more we are all screwed. The only WEAPONS will be the ones pointed at us. The situation in Ct. is NOT a gun issue. Are we now going to turn our schools into hard targets? Think not-can’t happen. We can not protect everybody. It was a tragedy however it is not a one issue solution.

  • Career Soldier

    Mr. Goldberg, I am an admirer of your work, but must say that on this one, you are wrong (about banning semi-automatic rifles, which other than in the minds of gun banners are not “assault weapons” or “military weapons,” or “weapons of war”). Fully automatic weapons are what our armed forces use, not AR-15s that look like them.

    The AR-15 that hundreds of thousands of law-abiding Americans keep in safes at home, and with which they have committed absolutely zero crimes of any kind, is the modern day equivalent of the musket over the fireplace or leaning against the wall by the front door at the time of our nation’s founding.

    Today, the AR-15 is the most popular long gun choice of Americans these days for a range of legitimate uses, ranging from home defense and protection of families, to competition shooting and hunting, and, if necessary, protection of the country itself. And please note that the Second Amendment to our Constitution, enshrined with nine other individual rights, has nothing to do with either target shooting or hunting.

    If we could save a life in the future, would you be willing to allow your vehicle, home and person to be searched by a government agent at any time, without a warrant or probable cause to believe you had committed a crime? Would you be willing to let law enforcement and intelligence officers monitor all your phone, email, web and face-to-face conversations at any time, without a warrant or due process? Would you be willing to grant the police the authority to grab citizens, place black bags over their heads at their own discretion and detain them indefinitely without benefit of habeas corpus or any other judicial accountability? Would you be willing to incorporate members of the armed forces in day-to-day law enforcement tasks, including powers of arrest over citizens, even if restricted to cases of what either Executive Order or act of Congress had defined as a “serious public health issue, threat to national security,” and so on?

    I presume your answer would be that you would not, because each of those examples, which could be argued MIGHT save lives, represents a clear violation of fundamental rights bequeathed to us by our founders. And rest assured, none of the gun grabbing legislators emerging from the woodwork these days promise that no more children would die if they are successful in banning entire classes of weapons and magazines. They just say, “We must do something.” I agree – but do you really advocate stripping away individual rights based on the criminal actions of a handful of demented individuals for whom none of the other laws they broke constituted any obstacle to them and their heinous acts?

    Evil is not impressed with feel-good legislation passed in an emotionally-charged moment. The largest school murder in our history wasn’t committed with guns, but with a bomb. Timothy McVeigh killed nearly 170 people at the Oklahoma City federal building using a fertilizer bomb. Evil will always find a way, the severely mentally ill will continue to pose potential deadly threats, and violent criminals will continue to prey on defenseless victims.

    I’m all for a discussion about how to more effectively keep the severely mentally ill from getting their hands on any kind of firearms. Please note that the killer in Newtown stole the guns he used, which brings to mind another conversation about the obligation to safely store firearms where people who shouldn’t have access to them (children, criminals) can’t obtain it. Let’s add in how we can better care for the mentally ill in this country.

    Then let’s look at the real cultural problem – not a mythical “gun culture” but the real culture of violence without compunction and the lack of regard for human life. Ask why the city and state with the most restrictive gun laws in the country (Chicago, IL) has a staggeringly high homicide rate. Ask why in those states where concealed carry permits are issued by law to any law-abiding citizen who applies and can pass a background check and complete some nominal training, the violent crime rates get lower and lower as more and more permits are issued.

    As a media professional, please ask why the media has under-reported (one local station is the exception) the fact that the shootings in the Clackamas Mall were stopped because a citizen licensed to carry a firearm who had ignored the “gun free zone” signage confronted the shooter (he didn’t engage due to the number of bystanders behind the shooter). But the shooter, seeing the young man with a handgun, retreated down a corridor and promptly killed himself, ending the rampage and minimizing the death toll.

    Let’s talk about the net effect of the idyllic Gun Free Schools law. Since it’s passage, we’ve seen a dramatic INCREASE in the number of school shootings. Anyone with a modest amount of common sense could tell you that defenseless targets are preferred by murderers over those where the attacker is likely to meet armed resistance, but that logic seems to escape squishy liberals who are out to make criminals out of Americans whose only “crime” would be the lawful possession and use of the type of firearm that is rarely used in the commission of horrific crimes.

    Finally, I don’t give a tinker’s damn if the GOP thinks that advocating a new Assault Weapons Ban will rehabilitate their public image and brand. The only people that will look kindly on legislators willing to chip away [further] at the Bill of Rights are those who don’t vote for GOP candidates anyway.

    I spent most of my adult life in uniform, sworn to support and defend the Constitution of the United States. The founders meant what they wrote and I take a dim view of opportunists who will eagerly exploit the emotions of a shaken citizenry and accompanying demand to “do something.” Mostly Democrats, accompanied by unprincipled Republicans, they are already using this heart-rending tragedy to advocate the same repressive agenda Obama pushed as a state legislator and US Senator – the agenda he’s spent the last four years lying about advocating. Now that he has just the crisis he needs, he and his fellow statists won’t waste it – they will gleefully attempt to disarm the American people of weapons that pose no threat to anyone but criminals, terrorists and tyrants, when wielded by good men and women (which is almost always). The fact that these weapons are occasionally used for mayhem by criminals, or the criminally insane, is no reason to weaken the one individual right that protects all our others – the Second Amendment.

    • mr_ditters

      Bernie doesn’t believe in the original purpose of the 2nd amendment. He made that clear on O’Reilly tonight. He thinks that if someone believes that tyranny can happen in the USA they are paranoid.

  • MikeS

    Bernie, I fear you misunderstand what a semi-automatic weapon is. Technically it’s a gun with a single chamber and a single barrel that does not have to be cocked between rounds. So what you think of when you think of a typical pistol—a gun that goes bang and shoots one bullet every time you pull the trigger—is a semi-automatic. And when you say that civilians don’t need semi-automatic weapons, you are essentially calling for a ban on almost all guns!

  • Ponymantle

    Bring back insane asylums. You can take away guns….but Timothy Mcvey didn’t use a gun did he?

  • http://disciplesnet.org/ Russ Smith

    I have mixed feelings about this. After the Oklahoma City bombing, there was no ban on fertilizer and diesel fuel. What did happen was that people who bought quantities of both were watched. Most of those folks turned out to be farmers (go figure), but some copy-cats were stopped. Likewise, you have gun enthusiasts, who might purchase a number of “assault weapons” and you have potential killers. What remains is often a relatively simple task of discerning which is which.
    But then what? The law (correctly) doesn’t penalize people for what they might do. Unfortunately that often puts us in the untenable position of waiting until they do something. There’s the sticking point. How do we engage something that’s actually preventative (and what is it?) instead of simply prosecuting the action post-mortem?

  • ChuckB

    Would someone out there define “assault weapon” to me?

  • uplinktruck

    Sorry Bernie,

    On this one we are going to disagree. I didn’t do anything wrong. My weapons are secured to a reasonable degree to ensure that no one that would do this sort of thing can get to them.

    Why should I be punished, have my property seized or be declared an outlaw over the actions of someone a thousand miles away from me that I had zero knowledge of and no control over?

    The Republicans (and every other representative of government right up to the president) should be seeking a way to protect and enhance our freedoms. They should not be chipping away at them one tiny little piece at a time.

    “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

    Benjamin Franklin

  • mwr46

    So, remind me, how many assult weapons were used on 9/11 and in Oklahoma City to kill almost 4000? Oh, i remember…NONE!

    • Bob

      But we didn’t ban airplanes or moving vans, but we are going to ban guns because of 20.

  • chrismalllory

    If rights are not absolute, then they are not rights, they are privileges.

  • Rob

    How about funding state mental institutions once again so that they can care for those individuals that, families, hospitals, law enforcement, homeless shelters can’t. Parcel up the funds saved plus the new health care law to fund.

  • Stephen Boone

    You know I HATE to mention this because some moron might read it and follow up on it, but that just a chance I’m going to have to take. About 25 years ago there was a series of mass murders in one or more of the East Coast cities, I THINK Philadelphia was one. A lot of basements in downtown buildings had been turned into dance clubs. They generally had only one entrance area, the street side. Madmen simply walked in, tipped over a 7 gallon container or GASOLINE and threw a match at the giant puddle. Go tip over 7 gallons of WATER in the street and imagine the inferno that ensued. HUNDREDS DIED in every one of these attacks. NOT ONE BULLET INVOLVED. Will you outlaw GASOLINE?? The problem is crazy people that want to kill a lot of people. How many bullets did the 9/11 terrorists have with them??? How many guns did McVeigh use in OK city?? WAKE UP TO THE REAL PROBLEM. IT ISN’T GUNS.

  • K-Man

    what is really needed on the Republican side is someone who can articulate something like the right to keep and near arms (including assault rifles) intelligently w/o looking like an idiot. Facts are facts and removing guns will not remove the problem. Instead, assign one police officer to each school during school hours….put them in plain clothes. It’s affordable. Instead of patrolling and issuing speeding tickets have them protect the public.

  • Debdeb

    Just want to throw in an off beat idea. Why not have a high tax on violent entertainment media. Kind of like the concept of the smoking tax. The higher the cost for violent entertainment, the fewer consumers. The tax can be used to help the mentally unstable.

    • Cindy

      At least this is a suggestion, a positive idea or a brainstorm! Not that I agree with it, but it is conversation worth merit!

  • John

    Once again a dispicable act is committed by someone who is not a legal gun owner and the law abiding citizens of this country will have there rights infringed upon because of a women who was reckless in securing her firearms from a soon who was mentally deficient

  • stupidburns

    Ugh. You’d think mental & neurological illness only affected liberals! As a conservative parent and as a parent of an autistic son, I’m appalled re the discourse re mental illness sufferers and their families. My son does not play video games or have access to guns (he prefers planes, trains and NHL games). We are aware of the ‘quirky & odd’ presentation he has to strangers. He gets gawked at as soon as he begins speaking in his low affect, slow deliberate manner. We see the stares from adults, not children. We realize our son will need adult services (transportation, job coaching, etc) to survive the world of adulthood. My son will have to navigate in a society that won’t adapt to his unique neurology. He may even need mental health services as an adult on Medicaid we ‘can’t wait’ to see the level of service that program provides (if we even find MDs/PhDs that accept Medicaid in three years). No, the expectation is that our son accommodate to society to the best of his ability and appear ‘normal.’ That’s going to be difficult at best. My biggest fear is that some ignorant MD or everyday citizen will misread his behavior, label him ‘mentally ill’ and shackle him into an institution.

    I am 100% in favor of the 2nd amendment and don’t want this tragedy to alter citizens’ rights. Don’t infringe on my son’s rights to exist, as God made him, perfect in His eyes and ours.

  • bonaparte3

    Liberals successfully changed how we institutionalize the mentally ill, starting in the 60s. Now we are supposedly enlightened- and allow the dangerously mentally ill to walk the streets. Bernie’s right; we need to rethink how we treat those suffering from serious mental illness that poses a threat to society.

  • Debdeb

    Love your advice to the Republican Party. Excellent. Bring up the gun ban first, genius! The rest is driving me crazy. I feel like the media is using this horrible incident to promote agendas. Agendas that will only create more of the same. Here is a quote from “The Gift of Fear” by Gavin De Becker. page 48 “One thing that does predict violent criminality is violence in ones childhood. … Whatever cards are dealt to a family, parents have at minimum a “window of opportunity” … we must start where [the violent criminals] started: as regular people.” To me, a home that kept so many military-style guns in the house, unlocked, was a family waiting for violence. A society that worships violence is another problem. If you are looking for solutions, I suggest asking Gavin.

  • Cindy

    I think Bernie has proven the point of his article here… “Taking on Guns Will Be the Easy Part”.

  • Glorstuart

    NO ONE needs an AK 47, no one needs an assault weapon – common sense that these types should be banned. That doesn’t mean they won’t still be available, but at least we should demonstrate the will to get rid of them. As to predicting the potential actions of the likely mentally unstable, that is virtually impossible. Not going to happen. You can’t lock people up because you guess that they might do something violent. Yes, if there are real indicators, but that is tricky.
    The thing that I think we also need to focus heavily on is the culture, the mass media that inundates our young vulnerable minds with the notion that violence is mundane. The violent video games, the movies, the mindless perversion, the constant barrage of this crap that glorifies horrible behavior and makes it seem routine. We, as a society, must abandon these offerings, so that perhaps they will become less profitable and end. Look at the profiles of the recent mass murderers – all young white males, either late teens or early twenties – products of isolation, and assaults on their senses. It ALL has to be addressed.

    • chrismalllory

      Molon Labe, slaver.

  • stupidburns

    We don’t need protections from entire mentally ill ppl. Parents/caregivers need help. Hospital psych units have disappeared b/c insurance companies including Medicaid/Medicare won’t pay for long-term services, especially for children & adolescents.

    Obama says “just take a pill’ and that’s what families resort to and the pharmaceuticals may end up altering the psyche for the worst. ERs, nursing homes & prisons are the defacto treatment centers for the mentally ill.


  • sybilll

    Bernie, you may have misread the American people. I swift stroll around Democratic Underground reveals that about 25-30% of them are gun owners. (Yes, I don my hazmat suit when I go).

  • http://twitter.com/BEBolly71 Brad

    An “assault weapon” ban is ridiculous. Any ban cannot legally affect weapons already owned. That alone makes it a useless and pointless measure. The government cannot legally take weapons already owned. Newton would not have been stopped. I thought you were smarter than this, Bernie. Evidently not.

    • OldDog

      Brad. Unfortionally, the “Government” can legally take away weapons already owned. I would refer you to England of 30 or so years ago. Do not forget, Government can make up the rules as they wish if it is in the area of “public health or well being”.

  • MMF

    BERNIE, you hit the nail ON THE HEAD!!!

  • Cecilio Mendez

    Bernie, I tend to agree with you… 99% of the time. But this time you are wrong about the Second Amendment and assault guns. To begin with, the Second Amendment is less about guns and more about providing means to the people; to fight against a government gone awry… like the one we have seen developing in the past 20-25 years. It has NOTHING to do with Democrats or Republicans. It is all about us, the Citizens. You fall into the nonsense of the assault-gun crap. (Yes, I said crap.) Assault is a behavior, an action. Gun is a tool, an object. Assault-gun is an oxymoron. “Sturmgewer” was a term the German military used, during WW II, to describe a short rifle that used smaller ammunition… that Hitler was against producing and it was already produced and distributed without his approval! It was a made-up word, to fool a mad man. Today they use the (rough) English translation – assault-gun – trying to equate it to a military, fully-automatic rifle; the ones which you normally see in the media ARE NOT! There are enough laws, in place and in function, that control all the procedures related with the LEGAL production, distribution and sales of firearms to qualified individuals. Any crazed, or a despicable, sub-human, that uses a legally-acquired firearm to do harm, can not and will not, be stopped by ANY new legislation; specially under the present circumstances… and I offer your case as an example. Laws are enacted to control the behavior of those who understand them and abide by their dictum – EDP’s (emotionally disturbed persons) and criminals DO NOT understand or care about ANY LAW. I accept that no right is absolute, but there are enough laws in the books regarding whatever is needed to regulate the LEGAL production, distribution and sale of firearms. The solution to the massacres and killings lie somewhere else!

    • OldDog

      Cecilio – You said it very well and much better than I.

  • http://twitter.com/TuckerPeterson_ Tucker Peterson

    The bill Feinstein want to put on the table to out law this and that isn’t. Retro . So the bad can still get these things and the good can’t. It’s just stupid . There are only two things that can cause change in one mind . Reason and force . We need force not reason against nuts
    And the same people that are calling for all this mental awareness are the first people to defend them from being called mental . Get it right Bernie . I’ll be watching tonight

  • BenDoubleCrossed

    The First Amendment does not make an exception for a member of the press to shout fire in a crowded theater either. But Federal Campaign laws violate equal protection of the law by exempting commercial media while regulating citizens and groups.

    There is no Constitutional reason why 527s, PACs or even churches should be regulated by Federal campaign laws that do not apply to commercial media!


    The creation of the so called Federal Election Commission in 1974 was a violation of the 1st Amendment and the regulations it enforces are unconstitutional.

    Contrary to the 1st Amendment, Congress wrote laws that abridge citizen’s freedoms to assemble and use the press and speech to demand redress of grievances from government. Restrictions were placed on how much individuals and groups could spend communicating and elaborate reporting requirements were established.

    But the so called “press exemption” created an unrestricted “state approved press”. 2 USC 431 (9) (B) (i) exempts newspaper, broadcast and magazine corporations from the definition of contribution and expenditure. The Buckley v. Valeo decision, which upheld these reforms, effectively redefined free press as the right of media corporations!

    Freedom of speech and the press are supposed to be the unalienable rights of natural persons, “we the people”! And exercising free press rights has always involved the cost of paper, ink and distribution.

    In the 184 year period prior to Watergate and the creation of the Federal Election Commission, ”we the people” had the freedom to raise and spend money to exercise our press rights, that only State approved newspaper and broadcast corporations enjoy today.

    To restore the rights of constituents, Congress must amend the press exemption to include every citizen and citizens group that communicate political ideas and opinions!

    A free press is a press not restricted or controlled by government censorship regarding politics or ideology.


    Some say the Boston Tea Party was the act of terrorist. Maybe so! A free people have the right to overthrow a lawless oppressive government. But will we have the means?

    In my opinion, the Federal Government is demonstrating animosity towards alll of the rights enumerated in our Bill of Rights!

  • Bob

    I say NO to banning the AR-15 platform of rifles. This is a great rifle for citizens to have either for target shooting, self defense, or against tyranny. I had one in Vietnam. I would have one now if I could afford it. By the way, I have not heard that this murderer had a 100 round magazine. If he did, it would have to be the large round kind. He probably had several 20 or 30 round magazines (they’re not clips – they’re magazines). I see no need in those 100 round magazines. They are prone to jamming. Ban them, but not the rifle, or the 20 and 30 round magazines.

  • All_In

    I’ve always had concerns about liberals who become conservatives, now I know why. When pressed, they revert back to their old nature, one can’t easily change. I know it is difficult to hold a position in the heavy winds of the moment, but be strong we will prevail.

  • http://www.facebook.com/harry.crook Harry Crook

    You bring up plenty of issues but no suggestion on how to fix it. Do you not think some in congress can identify the problem but, like you, have no idea how to fix it. One suggestion is to arm everyone.

  • Charles Sumner

    The problem is what the congress can NOT pass laws to protect us from or WON’T and that is not the crazy people in the back bedrooms or surburbia but the loony tunes in black robes who interprete the constitution to PROTECT these people. STOP. Sorry. I don’t mind protecting those people, protecting their human rights etc. That can be done without letting them roam free to kill the rest of us.

  • gene

    Good Point. Repulicans should lead on this. I personally don’t trust Obama on much of anything, especially the constitution. But we can agree that 100 round magazines and automatic (not semi- automatic weapons) could be banned and be constitutional. We should also ban the prayer in school ban. I don’t see the ACLU going after the teachers that prayed with their kids during the massacre. The hypocrisy is so thick at times like this. We wonder why are kids are confused. The war is not on woman but on kids and maybe God himself.

  • Challenger

    Bernie, what would you ban if this demon possesed nut job had killed these kids with a chain saw or a baseball bat?

  • rider237

    last comment. Bernie, if you are going to talk to Bill about weapons you should know that he is about the least knowledgeable person i have ever heard spout off about ammo or guns or gun shows…. he has absolutely no clue. you probably should have picked a different show for a meaningful conversation. :-) i’ll probably watch for the entertainment value!

  • Switchlight13

    Democrat mandated Federal “Gun Free School Zones” make teachers/students sitting ducks. If that principal and/or teachers had a gun there was a possiblity – a possibility – that the shooter could have been neutralized. With no gun, there was no possibility. Better have a gun and not need it then need one and not have it.

    • cigarbaron

      You can tell the Democrats never believed in the “Gun Free Zones” or else there would never been a TSA just a “NO Terrorist Zone”.

  • Stephen Bostrap

    More and more Bernie’s ability to think clearly fades into the past. I know how impossible it is to put people who are OBVIOUSLY DANGEROUS into a mental health facility. How about a law that only allows a majority of someone’s relatives to do so??? Show me all the people shooting up churches and schools that didn’t show OBVIOUS signs of mental disease first. Please. THEN, we can talk about how the guns are the problem. A more serious problem is INNUMARACY, an inability to understand math and mathematical conclusions. The fact is that 350 million Americans is a large large number. That is why more people are killed by lightning WHILE GOLFING each year than are killed in these type of shootings. MANY MANY MORE. Am I the only one who remembers the series of massacres in basement dance clubs on the East Coast, HUNDREDS KILLED in each one with out a single shot fired?? hmmmmmm?????

  • BarryG

    Australia banned assault weapons and made gun ownership much harder after their last mass shooting 12 years ago. Result: shooting deaths down 59 %, suicide down 65%, home invasions down. , no mass killungs since then Gov. Is not a tyranny, all murder down, . Rational gun control works.

  • montanachick
  • Ernster

    Well said.

  • bensday823

    Most people don’t know what the Assault Weapons ban really said. The assault weapons ban did two things;
    1. Ban the manufacture of certain types of weapons based on cosmetic features.
    2. Ban the manufacture of magazines holding more than 10 bullets.
    Now admittedly a 30 round magazine probably makes it easier for a lunatic to kill a lot of people in a short period of time. But that has to be wieghed against the fact that large capacity magazines create a much greater detterent to criminals; that’s why police switched from revolvers (6 round), to pistols (15 rounds).

  • montanachick

    Wow. I’m with you on the mental health portion of your article, but we part ways when you advocate a ban on “assault weapons.” Do you mean “scary looking” guns? Automatic weapons (already banned)? Are you also advocating confiscation of weapons from law abiding citizens? It is unclear to me what you are including in your proposed ban.

  • Patrick H.

    Do you what I’m sadly beginning to think, I think this comment section is becoming more and more purist in conservative ideology and not allowing for any individual thought. Bernie, I love reading your stuff, and I admire the fact you are wiling to take positions that are not considered ideological impure to conservatives. I can imagine the e-mail that’s flooding into you now over this and probably even more after you go on O’ Reilly tonight, I can’t wait to watch. Honestly, I’m mostly conservative and I’m not a supporter of Obama’s policies generally, but the ideological purism of these people, I’m not blaming Bernie for this because he can’t control who reads the site, but it’s just a sad state of affairs. For the most part, it seems that both sides of the political spectrum care more about their positions than their children.

    • rider237

      this shooting was something that shocked people. remove, for a moment, the shooting, and tell me how many children died this week? do you know? do you weep over each one?

      what if these kids had died in a bus crash? would it still be all over the news? would there be daily, multiple, press conferences? of course not.

      it’s not the deaths that are really upsetting people. it’s the mechanism of death. what is the most upsetting about the mechanism? is it really the guns, or is it that we can’t get our heads around a person doing this…so the guns are the next best thing to focus on?

      my point…my only point i guess, is that we need to understand the people who do this, not how they do it. we can take the easy way and ban any guns you like, but that is not a solution, it is a feel good band-aid for what is really wrong.

  • Crapocalypse

    Knees are jerking everywhere, it seems.

  • Tim from California

    Bernie: Right on again…. Semi auto weapons serve practically no one from a “protection” stand point. It may or may not do any good in the long run when a nut case wants to murder indiscriminately. Yet, it’s a step that should be made, if not simply from the point that YES, the Republicans are losing big time on many ways in being out of touch. It will be another nail in the coffin of the GOP if they don’t at the very least, agree with the Liberals on this one, but would be even better serviced by the mass populace in leading the charge to ban assault weapons.

  • Maury

    I agree with your assessment of assault guns, Bernie, but you haven’t addressed the entire story. What about the entertainment industry’s hypocritical fascination with unspeakable violence in movies, video games, comic books, etc? These very same liberal purveyors of filth and gun violence that poison the minds of young, unstable males turn right around (after they’ve made millions on their trash) and scream, “Repeal the 2nd Amendment. No more guns, period!” The entertainment industry is every bit as culpable as anyone and needs to be called on the carpet to account for their considerable responsibility for this tragedy.

  • FC in NC

    You’re wrong! Capitulating to the “assault weapons ban” crowd is an emotional reaction. The Sandy Hook killer didn’t use an assault weapon, so you can assume the next step in this process would be a hand gun ban. Let me ask you this: Had this maniac plowed down these 20 children on a playground with an SUV would you agree to ban SUV’s? Think about it.

  • Orientman

    Sorry Bernie, I normally agree with you 100%, but you have this one wrong.


  • waterlylies84

    Again, as so many in the media, you are attacking the wrong thing. This young man would have attacked that school, or another, and would have killed his mama whether he had guns or gasoline. He did not have the guns legally, they were his mama’s. OregonBuzz is right, a pistol fires as fast as a semi-automatic. There is no easy answer, but banning any weapon or ammunition is simply not the answer it is a knee-jerk response at best, and a false sense of security at worst.

    This mother needed help, the mental health community needs help. We need people who are trained to help with mental health issues, trained to spot areas of concern, trained to work with parents, family members, and the person with the mental issue.

    It is not uncommon for a person bent on suicide to take others with him (and yes, statistically males take someone with them when they attempt suicide). Let’s set up plans to find those at risk of suicide, let’s make plans to help them before they act on that plan. A promise is not enough. We must act!

    Bernie, gun control in any sense is too simplistic!

    • Cindy

      I thought your comment on banning “males” was interesting though. :0)

  • scott

    “nobody” wants to ban all guns?
    excuse me Bernie, look up Dianne Feinstein on 60 Minutes from the time of the first “assault-weapons” ban – quote “If I had the votes I would tell American to turn them ALL in”.
    there are more than a few “voices” like hers.
    so spare me the crap that the anti-gunners will stop even with so-called assault-weapons. they won’t.
    i can see where this is going though, so time for me to invest in a few more guns, magazines, more ammo.

  • zappp

    People like Jefferson and George Mason opposed the Constitution because they feared the government would be too powerful. They INSISTED a Bill of Rights be included to protect the people FROM THE GOVERNMENT. The inclusion of the 2nd Amendment was intended for just that purpose. Our Government should fear its’ citizens. Muskets and 6 shooters do not scare them. I’m all for background checks, age limits, and mental illness restrictions. But a law abiding citizen should have access to weapons capable of at least making our government think twice before trying to push us around. These shootings are tragic. More can be done to prevent them from getting in to the hands of the wrong people. But does anyone really trust our government and this President to leave it at that?

  • RickonhisHarleyJohnson

    The 2nd amendment wasn’t written so we could continue to hunt. It was written to protect us from an oppressive govt. Our Founders must have had some great crystal ball. You got this one wrong, Bernie.

  • http://twitter.com/RandallLaVerne Randall LaVerne

    Nice article, but I think I remember a guy driving his car in to a group of student on a campus some years back and now that I think of it that has happen a number of times hasn’t it. I’m not a big assault rifle fan, I have 1 but I could live without it although it does work very well on the feral hogs problem we have here in Texas. Of course one of those mini-guns would work even better. As I understand it with the right license I could own one, but no not me. Frankly I prefer my bolt action rifle for the hogs.

    I hear you talk about Tucson, Columbine, Aurora, and Virginia Tech. If you are going talk about those tragedies you should talk about the 1 tragedy that killed more people than all 4 of those times 2 or even more, Fast & Furious. Most all of the lives lost there were Mexicans in Mexico. I sure hope you aren’t going to try to tell me they don’t count. Fast & Furous could prove to some that we need the assault rifles to protect ourselves from the biggest threat of all, our own over reaching government. I don’t know about that, I think by the time it get so bad that people are grabbing their rifles and heading out to take on our own government it will be to late.

    The one think that comes to mind in this case is that a person with a mentally impaired child should not be teaching that child to shoot. I think that a person with a mentally impaired person in the house should be required to keep the rifles and pistol at another location. Say a locker at the range they use or some place other than the house the mental case lives in. Don’t tell me a gun safe is just as good, it won’t be. It may help but it won’t stop all of them. Plus the crazy see you with your guns, not good. That doesn’t help in the Tucson or Aurora case. How do we keep the guns out of the hands of nuts like them? That I do not have an answer for, other than to say their parents, maybe. Right now if a parent went to the police and said my child isn’t stable nothing would happen nothing. It need to not be so bad that you scare the parent away, but enough that if he or she tries to buy a gun some addition investigation is done. But truly I don’t know, I just don’t know.

  • daniel p. mitchell

    There was a murder in Florida the other day by a guy with a hammer. And another one by a guy who chased a woman down the street with a knife and killed her. So let’s ban hammers and knives. While we’re at it, let’s ban cars, airplances, cigarettes, and fatty foods. For my part, I am going to ban Mr. Goldberg by unsubscribing to his newsletter and un-following him on Twitter. And I have been looking for a reason to stop watching O’Reilly – now I have one.

    • Cindy

      Hmmm. So if we don’t agree with someone we should just stop talking? Apparently that is what Mr. Lanza did in his frustration. You cannot solve or be part of a solution by withdrawing. I learned this in my family… (I’m 7 out of 8).

      • OldDog

        I’m with you, Cindy. I did agree with Mr. Mitchell on the first part of his message. I just did not see how banning Burney and Bill would lead to any solutions.

    • ARJ127

      Hammers and knives are meant for purposes other than killing. What are guns meant to do? Drive in nails? Carve steaks? Maybe not.

  • Cindy

    China has a worse problem than we do with this. As I was perusing world news on Friday, I noticed 22 children in China had been knifed at a school. They don’t have semi-automatic weapons, and they have outpaced the U.S. in crimes (I think especially on children) like this. This doesn’t take into account their only 1 male (no matter how you get them/abortion) per couple birth rate. Just makes me think of the axium I’ve heard in connection with the NRA, “Guns don’t kill people, PEOPLE kill people”. I don’t have the answers and I don’t believe banning guns are the answer. I think it’s a societal issue. We need hard looks at how our mentally ill are being treated, as well as our support for their families. We need to make families important again. It IS the fundamental unit of human society, and we have grossly neglected them. The squeaky wheels get the grease, and our minorities are squeaky, so we bow to them, but we ALL come from families, functional or not.

  • Maury

    I agree with your assessment of assault guns, Bernie, but you haven’t addressed the entire story. What about the entertainment industry’s hypocritical fascination with unspeakable violence in movies, video games, comic books, etc? These very same liberal purveyors of filth and gun violence that poison the minds of young, unstable males turn right around (after they’ve made millions on their trash) and scream, “Repeal the 2nd Amendment. No more guns, period!” The entertainment industry is every bit as culpable as anyone and needs to be called on the carpet to account for their considerable responsibility for this tragedy.

  • Patrick H.

    Can someone tell me why someone who isn’t in some sort of military force needs an assault weapon that can shoot several bullets per second? The coroner said that he found 3-11 bullets in those 1st grader’s bodies. How horrifying!

    • Cindy

      So bullets from a Glock would have been less violating….

  • OregonBuzz

    First of all Bernie, you’re blaming the wrong thing. Semi-automatic weapons? Do you actually know how they function? I can fire a revolver as fast as I can fire a semi-automatic. It requires a trigger pull to fire each round. The thing to blame is the moral and social decay prevalent in our society and you can’t ban that. You also cannot legislate minds, stable or otherwise. Recall the Ft. Hood shooting? Military personnel on base were not permitted firearms. It was a miniature disarmed society, yet a crazy Muslim had semi-automatic firearms and he did not have 100rd. magazines. It was a civilian policewoman that took him down. Don’t blame the weapon. Blame, if it is to be placed, falls upon the decay of our society.

  • bleufishcat

    You’re right, the GOP is not smart on many issues. It’s not smart on the issues that they cave on with the Dems.

    Save needless work hours banning guns and use that time and money to arm America. When America finds its moral compass, strengthens the family, promotes life, then we can relax a bit and set our arms down for awhile.

    I’m not going to stand by and allow the govt to disarm its citizenry in the name of safety. I’ve seen that movie before. It didn’t end well.

  • Switchlight13

    Re open the insane asylums that were closed in the 1980s. Meds don’t work if they don’t take them. I personally know a so called “Bi Polar” that is extremely dangerous but his family protects him despite outbursts of violence at home and they even has guns in the house if you can believe that. The problem is parents protect these nut jobs so and do not notify the police. The “shrinks” love keeping them on meds instead of committing them to an asylum. A so-called semi-auto assault weapon is no different from a Remington semi-auto hunting rifle except for its outward military appearance. Baning so called semi-auto assault weapons is just a feel good measure that was tried before for 10 years and no reduction in crime was noted. Its the nut jobs that must be locked up before they strike.

  • Patrick H.

    Bernie, you’re absolutely right. Why someone needs an assault gun if he or she is not in the military or something like that that can shoot so many bullets a second is beyond me. Also, thank you for bringing up the subject of mental illness, it’s something that too often goes unnoticed in these type of things especially with the stigma it brings. We no longer can ignore and must have a discussion on it. One can only hope both sides of the political spectrum can talk reasonably about this and not let emotions get in the way of the subject.

    • rider237

      i wonder if we want the government (any more than they do) defining our needs for us? do you need the vehicle you drive. do you need the size house you live in? is there some implied power to the government to define need? because if there is, or if we give them one, we are screwed.

      • yahoo14

        Rider and John Smith, you are NRA hacks and gun nuts who can’t stand one regulation on your guns. You are selfish people who care more about your guns than your children. You should get them taken away if you have them.

        • rider237

          you made some leaps there. you know nothing about me or my associations.

          there was a time in this country when you could order you guns from the sears catalog. they were delivered COD in the mail and it didn’t matter your age of background as long as you had the cash when you collected you package.
          my school had a shooting club and the kids brought their guns to school and carried them through the halls. guess what? there were no school shootings.

          if the problem were with the guns, the ever increasing regulations in this country should have ended or reduced gun violence. instead, the more restrictive the gun laws in any given place, the more apt there is to be gun crime.

          if we do not have these conversations based on fact, rather than emotion, there will be no solutions because all our respsonse will be reactionary rather than funcitonal.

          • yahoo14

            There you go again, clinging to your guns and religion.

          • rider237

            again you make leaps. what is the point you really want to make? i’m missing it. sorry.

          • awm48

            Don’t feed the trolls :)

        • http://twitter.com/BEBolly71 Brad

          You’re welcome to try taking them away.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004697500362 John Smith

      You know how hard it is too get an assault weapon? You have to get a special permit. Then you have to find one for sale. You will not find one under 10k btw. It also has to be manufactured before 1984 to be legally owned. And this latest round of mass shootings by criminals was not carried out with an assault weapon.

    • awm48

      You are mistaking a replica SEMI-automatic weapon for a FULLY-automatic military issue weapon. Fully automatic are nearly impossible to obtain legally by any individual.

  • FloridaJim

    The governments who control their citizens do so by having more firepower. Our government supposedly is controlled by the citizens and I have not seen a government I would trust with an armed citizenry, have you?

    Gangs roam freely in Chicago with heavy firepower and who is stopping them, not Obama, not Emanuel not anyone so the only people without guns will be us the taxpaying good citizens…..even Bloomberg goes nowhere without his armed bodyguards.

    • Cindy


  • Johnny Deadline

    Why not ban those video games that reward users with points and bonus play for taking out as many people as possible? Or why not ban music that celebrates the denigration of women and celebrates killing cops? Banning guns from law abiding citizens because of horrible tragedies like this makes as much sense as banning cars because of the number of drunk driving fatalities or fatty foods because of the number of horizontally challenged people that take up more space and sap the resources of our health care system.

    Might be a better idea to prosecute govt officials responsible for the likes of Fast & Furious, Waco, and Benghazi before disarming citizens of their right of protecting themselves from a federal government that rarely abides by what it forces on others.

  • rider237

    the VT slaughter was done with hand guns. do you know how quickly you can reload a semi-auto hand gun? doesn’t matter how many rounds it holds. it only takes a second to swap a magazine.

    the problem is not with weapons, it is with people. that ought to be a no brainer, but people are so very hard and messy to deal with. so much easier to go after the tool than the root cause.

    why are there messed up , murdering people? because the society is messed up. why is the society messed up? because the very people who are now hollering for protection from the gun toting kooks, were the ones who decided that the foundations of our society were to restrictive and puritanical, and had to be destroyed. and no, i’m not just talking about religion.

    we shut down the mental hospitals because the well meaning leftist shrinks said they were cruel and that the mental patients could be managed in the communities. we made it so that the courts could not force someone to stay in a mental institution against their will unless it could be proved that they were a danger to themselves and others. how do you prove that? you wait until they do something dangerous.

    parents can’t discipline their children. schools can’t discipline children. we killed god.

    that last goes to foundation again. all societies as far back as we can go have had a higher power or powers. why? because the laws of a god are more effective in keeping civilization in line than the laws of man. we think we have outgrown gods. we are to evolved and to smart for that.

    so we’ll do what the UK has done over the last 50 years. we’ll ban some guns, then we’ll ban some more guns. after that, we’ll ban certain types of knives. then some other knives. then we’ll restrict the sale of kitchen knives and look at taking the points off of them.
    we’ll do all of this in the name of safety because legislating this kind of stuff is far easier than dealing with the real problems….and the legislators can say “we tried”.

  • http://blog.cyberquill.com/ Cyberquill

    I see. So although no reasonable person will want to see the Second Amendment repealed, reason commands that weapons powerful enough to offer at least an iota of meaningful resistance against a potentially tyrannical U.S. government and its military ought to be banned — so then what’s the point of having a Second Amendment in the first place?

  • Mare

    Why don’t you look into the fact that three of these mentally challenged individuals had very close ties to witnesses about to testify at the International bank scandal. Three? Conspiracy theorists want to know if that is a bit much? And exactly what medication cocktail is swirling in those people that caused them to spiral out of control. There is no simple answer when the focus is on an inanimate object like a gun but the real battle might be as small as a pill and as evil as bullying!

  • John Detwiler

    Part of Bernie’s article I agree with. The part where we should be getting those crazies of the streets. When I was a child there were many so called Insane Asylms for the crazies. But the liberals decided that a person had to do something in order to be committed. Well we are beginning to view the results of that so call politically correct nonsense. With our lackadaisical thinking we are sure to continue to see the occasional nut killing some person or even many persons and gun control will not stop this.

    • OldDog

      The only “gun control” I want is the bullet I might have to fire to protect myself, my wife, or others goes exactly where I aim it.

  • Kicker

    Bernie, as much as I love him, is focusing, like so many, on a symptom, and ignoring the cause. Progressivism has created a culture that promotes and enables acts such as that committed by Lanza.

    Progressives believe,and practice, identity politics, whereby anyone with whom you disagree is dehumanized, marginalized, and denigrated. Progressives provide constant examples where the use of threats of violence and intimidation are routinely used to achieve political or personal goals (Witness Michigan just a few days ago)

    Progressives promote death and deny the sanctity of life, whether via abortion, through “pathway to death” programs, or assisted suicide.

    Progressives promote a culture of instant wish gratification and self-centeredness that justifies even the most egregious of acts through moral relativism and situational ethics.

    I would suggest that if we “banned Progressives” we’d see far fewer instances like Sandy Hook than if we banned guns. After all, one crazed Progressive with a sword can kill just as many as one with a gun!!!

  • docww

    I agree that the issue of guns is not where we should be
    focusing our attention. Many pundits and talking heads have already been saying that we need to shore up our creaky mental health system. As a practicing physician, I think that this also misses the point.

    Adam Lanza apparently had Asberger’s syndrome, a form of
    autism, and possibly a personality disorder. Several studies over that past few
    years have linked autism with maternal obesity and type II diabetes, suggesting
    that these conditions may play a critical role in the rising incidence of

    To find the reason autism is increasing, we need to look at
    why obesity and diabetes are increasing at an epidemic rate. For years it was
    assumed it is because we are eating too much food. Recent research has shown that it’s more about the type of food we are eating.

    Excessive fructose mainly from sugar and HFCS seems to be
    driving the increased incidence of insulin resistance, central obesity and type
    II diabetes. When you have insulin resistance and consume high glycemic
    carbohydrates, your brain is subjected to magnified glucose spikes and high
    insulin levels. Over time this seems to trigger a form of food-induced brain
    dysfunction called Carbohydrate Associated Reversible Brain syndrome or CARB syndrome. People with CARB syndrome can develop up to 22 brain dysfunction symptoms that interfere with their impulse control and ability to function. When CARB syndrome develops in a fetus or infant, autism is often the result.

    Until we address the effect of our toxic food on brain function, we can expect to have more similar tragic events in the future.

  • beniyyar

    No one is going to do a single thing regarding guns, and that is because guns are not the problem, crazy people and criminals with guns are the problem.

  • http://media.nola.com/tpphotos/photo/9346409-standard.jpg bondmen

    Bernard I haven’t given up my automobile because a drunk driver drove the wrong way on the highway plowing into the young family killing 5. And I will not give up my 2nd Amendment rights because a mental defect was not controlled by his parents or an institution. If I were to react in such a way to this horrible incident, it would truly be madness on my part.

    • Brian_Bayless

      You missed the point of his article. Try reading it again and not just look for key words.

      • http://media.nola.com/tpphotos/photo/9346409-standard.jpg bondmen

        OK then, what’s the point in your opinion Brian?

        • ksp48

          That just like there are speed limits, stop signs, rules of the road and prohibitions on semi trailers on certain streets, so too might reasonable people agree on certain limitations and restrictions as to weapons and their usage without repealing the 2nd amendment in law or spirit.

          • MostlyRight

            Which Ammendment was it that speaks to every individual’s right to drive as fast or crazy as they want? I must have missed that one.

          • http://media.nola.com/tpphotos/photo/9346409-standard.jpg bondmen

            For example…

          • ARJ127

            All the guns were legally owned by the first victim – the killer’s mother.

          • CanofSand

            So… if a murderer decides to steal from a policeman’s home, maybe even a fully automatic gun which police are allowed to have, shall we ban guns from policemen as well, since someone might steal them?

          • ARJ127

            I stated a fact. I didn’t draw a conclusion. My position is that gun ownership is OK However, if you own a gun, you are responsible. If you can’t handle the responsibility, don’t get a gun.

      • alanstorm

        Actually, you did. Read it again. If you can read – and comprehend what you read.

  • http://www.facebook.com/brian.k.garland Brian Garland

    “No rights are absolute.”

    Then we have no rights. When man can impose his own restrictions on “unalienable rights”, then the only rights we have left are the ones men choose to allow us to have.

    • ARJ127

      Rights also mean responsibility. Justice Holmes said that the First Amendment guarantee of freedom of speech didn’t include yelling “fire” in a theatre. Unless you assume the responsibility for your freedoms, you don’t deserve them

      • CanofSand

        If you yell fire in a crowded theater, you can get in trouble with the law. But no one is MUZZLED when they enter a theater to prevent them from yelling “fire”.

        • ARJ127

          The point I made was that gun ownership means responsibility. That can include requiring the owners to store their weapons securely, taking firearm safety training before purchasing a weapon, etc. That’s responsibility. If the NRA would get on board with those suggestions, it would be a bit more credible. However, the NRA has taken the Second Amendment to be absolute and has resisted any initiatives to require gun owners to be responsible. That’s why you have kids getting their heads blown off by a playmate who found Daddy’s gun in the night table. Here’s a study that shows the effect of weak gun laws, thanks to the Second Amendment means: http://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/pi/rs/rep-rap/1998/wd98_4-dt98_4/p6.html

          • Mallet Head

            How do you enforce a law requiring owners weapons to be secured? Periodic in house searches?

          • arj127

            No. Education (I assume people are inherently sensible) and charging them if their guns are used in committing a crime.

          • http://www.facebook.com/jack.withers.77 Jack Withers

            Nobody cares more about gun safety than the NRA. I am a liftime member and they preach it all the time.

  • lsal

    I am not sure why no one is talking about all the shoot-em up games and movies that these kids watch. Doesn’t anyone think they play a part in kids outlook?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002489593480 John Probst

    Bernie is the one that does damage to the R-brand, but he does not go far enough on criticism of abortion after rape–some R’s insist the child of rape is a blessing from God, in so many words!!!

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/4KIUH33MV55JS5C4BCHGIAHF4M Murray the KY

      in what possible way does killing that unborn child punish THE RAPIST? in what way???

  • Tim from Southern California

    Bernie-love your work but you’re overnreacting emotionally here. All the comments below capture all my thoughts except this one: the govt showed it’s abilities in gun control in the Fast&Furious disaster. Banning or regulating anything by the Federal govt is not a solution and doesn’t solve the bigger issue of the loss of morality and the teaching of that in the American public school system.

  • bigo

    Again, guns don’t kill, evil people do. One shot would have killed any of those poor children. Just because it was a semi-automatic didn’t change the fact. You can ban them, but it won’t change the fact that sick people will find a way to kill if that’s their motive. Are we to ban knives also, because they jump up sometimes and stab people. No, the focus is all wrong. How about all those gun owners who act responsibly. (99.9%) I can possibly see limiting the clip quantities. I don’t think anyone needs 100/clip. All these murders weren’t committed with assault weapons, some were pistols, I guess those will be next on the list. It is a slippery slope and that’s what the Democrats want…anything to forward their agenda on total gun control. These results are only symptoms of the real problem. Sick boys/girls playing these horrible video games that de-synthesize them to any empathy for anyone. Lets ban those and get back to simple games. When a young sick mind sets in front of a computer for hours at a time killing people it’s bound to affect them adversely. No, that won’t be considered because that’s big money and I can only imagine where a lot of that goes.

    • OldDog

      bigo – You are so on target.

    • ARJ127

      Guns give evil people the means to kill. The purpose of guns is to kill.

      • CanofSand

        So? You haven’t actually made a point.

        • ARJ127

          I did make the point. You refuse to see it. Guns can facilitate the commission of heinous acts by evil people.

  • Dave M

    Bernie… what are you thinking???!! Think Warsaw getto in the early 1940’s when/where all the jews were rounded up and shipped in masses to gas chambers. It would have been a totally different story if their guns had not been confiscated.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002489593480 John Probst

    regardless of where O was born his birth cert. is an obvious forgery Bernie, so who is crazy here?? Or in denial?? Or an R-establishment NWO stooge??? Did you cover Sheriff Joe? Or ask Corsi to take alie-detector test?

  • Joel

    Banning firearms makes little sense while southern border, used all the time by traffickers of all kinds, remains open.

    Footnote 1: Columbine occurred 5 years after the Clinton assault weapons ban was enacted.

    Footnote 2: Beslan occurred in Russia, a land of plenty of weapons laws.

  • gbandy

    In Mexico where guns are almost illegal there were 40k murders by guns. Although the CONN killing were the gravest tragedy no laws would of changed the acts of a insane person. Bernie you are wrong on this one. Just think of all the murders in Mexico how many of the guns were supplied by our own top cop Holder? So isn’t there some hypocrisy here with the Liberals?

  • George Goldtrap

    Millions of guns available last Friday…yet, we were still one gun short of enough. Had the Principal had one, the shooter would have been dead and the 26 others alive. Just not enough available guns. George in Ormond Beach FL.

  • retsam469

    Bernie: This is the first time I strongly disagree with you. As smart as you are, surely you know the meaning and context of the 2 ND Amendment? It wasn’t included to let hunters put food on the tanle!

  • Jim Staudt

    I have a comment to make: If just one of those teachers, just one, had been armed, the body count would be far less. There would still be a body count, because when a deranged maniac decides to do something like that, all the gun laws in the universe aren’t going to stop him. But one teacher with a gun could have put him out of his misery long before he managed to kill all those innocent people. As Wayne LaPierre (CEO of the NRA) said the other day, “Sometimes the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun.” Well put.

  • http://twitter.com/pianobymoonlite Erika

    Bernie: Repubs will never repair the damage that’s been done to the Repubs. Leftists know that true conservatives ARE their enemies. They’d have to commit suicide in order for the Dems to be happy. You’re not letting yourself get ‘paranoid’ enough to see the order of things happening.

  • http://twitter.com/TuckerPeterson_ Tucker Peterson

    And remember Ft Hood ? The government still has not brought him to trial . Because they are to busy talking about his beard . And he was allowed to have these weapons .

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1278049046 David Spears

    Inailiable rights are an absolute. 2nd amendment was designed not for sports and hunting but to ensure the individual maintained the ability to protect himself from attack. 20,000 laws infringing on citizens rights to own a gun will not change t 20k+1

  • Todd S

    I have Always followed you with respect. This weekend, I duck hunted in Easter NC with a semiautomatic shotgun. Your broad definition of semiautomatic is a very slippery slope. Additionally, has outlawing drugs worked? This can and should be addresses. How about we put Marshall’s in schools, just like airplanes? My freedom of firearm ownership did not cause this horrible disaster.

    • Ginger

      Hey..if we are lucky it will come full circle…since they want now to legalize drugs…worked with booze didn’t it?

  • http://profiles.google.com/rick.geiger Rick Geiger

    You need to forgive Bernie, his mind was distorted by 20 years at CBS news. Any person that actually looks at facts, and not emotional impulses knows that every reasonable person must agree that taking away guns from law abiding citizens will not stop criminals or crazies from killing. If that was the case, the US would not need a military because the world could just ban weapons. What needs to happen is what they do in Israel, and that is train people that have others in their charge to use weapons when necessary. The ONLY thing that would have stopped this guy last Friday was a teacher or security guard at the school with a gun. Unfortunately, Bernie has no understanding of guns and, also, sadly, a misguided view of the Constitution.

  • http://www.facebook.com/JaneScroggins Jane Scroggins

    Almost all deer rifles are semi-automatic. The greatest need is care for the mentally ill. The violence in the movies and TV has been discussed for years–and gotten progressively worse. So has the violence. Check out your children’s video games! Some are horrifying. don’t tell me it doesn’t matter if they shoot and see the blood and gore splatter!

    On the other hand banning semi-automatics would affect target shooters and hunters and have little effect on the crazies!

    • OldDog

      You know what is really funny? An old blunderbus from 1600 or so is a “semi-automatic” in that the shooter has to press the trigger every time a round (they were really round in those days) was fired. The word “semi-automatic” is being used as a scare word because people just see the “automatic” without knowing what “semi” means. You could just as well say single shot.

  • blackdog

    So why don’t we ban sick and disturbed people? Why do law abiding people with an AR-15 style rifle or an AK-47 type that they are familiar with from military service have to surrender to an overbearing liberal congress? Congress can pass a national law for immediate trial and no delay to execution of a mass murder who kills kids or churchgoers. What’s wrong with that to ‘send a message’ ?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002489593480 John Probst

    1). The size of ammo clips is irrelevant as you can change clips rapidly 2) With little children, a machete will do most of the same damage if there is no one there with a gun, like the Mexican gangs did until the Great Healer in Chief gave them guns to kill 200 Americans and tens of thousands of Mexicans (3) Guy with a legal gun prob. defused the Oregon situation (4) Gun free zones are great places for a sicko to do his damage (5) Read that 5 of 7 school gun incidents in 1997 were stopped by teachers/citizens with guns (Pearl, MS w principal?) (6) Almost all these incidents occur in VERY liberal areas (Tucson, Denver, Conn, Portland, etc)

  • Dave M

    Citizens may one day need these so-called asault weapons to protect ourselves from an enslaving oppressive government.

    • Ginger

      As in North Korea, Iran , Iraq, china, Syria etc.

  • SeattleSam

    The deadliest school massacre in
    U.S. history took place in Michigan in 1927 and it didn’t involve automatic weapons.

    • Jared Hansen

      Not just Autos Sam, It didn’t even involve firearms. And while they weren’t “school” massacres, 9/11 and OKC didn’t either.

  • tim ned

    A 22 is as deadly as a 9 mm. A shotgun in the wrong hands is a weapon of mass destruction. Ban semiautomatics and you simply replace the weapon. Thanks to Willowbrook and civil liberty attorneys, the ability of a parent to commit children is
    impossible. But I bet we can count on our politicians to do what they have always done in the past. Pass a few worthless laws that will accomplish

    • tim ned

      Just want to add one more note. I own semi automatic hunting rifles. If our politicians put together logical legislation and budgeting that I believed would save lives, I would be more than happy to surrender these. However I have no faith in politicians that can’t deliver a balanced budget or fix the debt problem. How on earth could they ever resolve this horrific problem.

      • http://twitter.com/pianobymoonlite Erika

        For the record: you’re right not to trust them. They’re not looking to solve these problems. They’re creating ways in which we’ll hand over our rights so that their coup d’etat will be as peaceable as possible. Much like the frog in the luke warm water – we may even know that the heat’s being turned up, we’ll just think we’re the ones doing it. Bad things are coming. And Benghazi Barry and his buddies are just the beginning.

    • jondos

      Pass a few worthless laws that will accomplish nothing, BUT HURT THE LAW ABIDING! Isn’t that normally how it goes?

  • http://twitter.com/TuckerPeterson_ Tucker Peterson

    You are wrong . You think mental people just started appearing in the last 20 years ? I don’t think so . What is different is the culture they are exposed to . The ignorant are now running the country . Have you forgotten ruby ridge ? The 2nd is also to protect us against the government . Obama referred to benghazi has a bumpin the road . Why aren’t these liberals mad about terrorist clinging to their guns and religion . These gun are already out there Bernie . Are you are going to accomplish with any law of banning is give the nuts the upper hand . It’s the government and the weak minded that are allowing these events to happen . Class room can have thumb print ID print gun safes . And now there are hand funds with hand print recognition . Only THAT person can fire it . Safe and secure . These mass killings are in places that prohibit fire arms . Do you think these Adam Lanza would have went to that school and did what he did . Had he known there were ten gun safes with hand print recognition guns waiting on him ? I think not . Get off your knees America . Stop bowing to peace . Gets some guts . And protect the children . This country has become weak . Limp wrist cry babies . Freedom is not free . This country no longer cares about free what so ever . Just tv , food , and a check . I like you Bernie . But you are wrong on this one .

    • http://twitter.com/TuckerPeterson_ Tucker Peterson

      Hand guns not Funds . Sorry iPad only gives about a 1/4 in unscrolling space to edit .

    • http://twitter.com/pianobymoonlite Erika

      Excellently put.

    • CanofSand

      Actually, the rate of mass murders hasn’t increased. Don’t get me wrong, our culture is messed up in many ways, but you can’t tie some increase in these tragedies to that because there has been NO SUCH INCREASE.

  • Wheels55

    I agree the focus must be more on the mentally unstable and not guns themselves. If we were to ban assault weapons, murders will still be committed with the use of hunting rifles and handguns. If we ban all guns, then the nuts will find something else. So, either ban all assault weapons and make it extremely illegal to have one – even if you already do – or forget about any bans having a chance to be effective.
    It’s all about personal responsibility and, forgive me, Lanza’s mother did not show enough of it as she should have kept her guns locked up or not have them at all.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002489593480 John Probst

      careful, the gov’t/courts incarcerate people(thousands per state); some of these “mentally ill” so they can avoid trials on phony, trumped up charges that won’t hold up. To the gov’t , MSM and Bernie, Truthers and Birthers are “mentally ill” and anyone who distrusts the evil NWO also

  • http://twitter.com/Tom_in_NC Tom_in_NC

    Of course we should ban assault weapons. Everyone knows that tyrannical governments can be stopped by citizens armed with single shot rifles.

    • ph16

      Well I don’t think America is in danger of becoming a tyrannical government at this time. Of course, you probably think Obama’s a tyrant who needs to be stopped.

      • Cindy

        I wonder what Ambassador Stevens and staff would have thought about this the evening he called in for help…? He wasn’t leaping to protect them.

        • http://twitter.com/Conservative4MI Thomas J Edwards

          Ambassador Stevens learned what happens in Obama’s Gun Free Zone.

      • Ricky Barnes

        Noooooo…. But, why did Pravda say he was the only successful Communist candidate in last years elections? And why did both Chavez and the Castro brothers say they supported him? And WHAT exactly did he promise Putin he would do “after the election, which will be the last one”? And, by the way, I will be glad to support a ban on semi-automatic weapons the day after President Obama and Bernie get back from hunting Grizzly Bears with their single shot bolt action rifles. uh-huh. yeah.

      • http://www.facebook.com/bob.cordon.1 Bob Cordon

        Yes, Obama HAS brought tyranny to our country and will continue to do so. He is a socialist with communist leanings, and will do everything he can get away with to weaken the freedoms of individual Americans. He must be stopped.

      • Switchlight13

        Obama? No, he’s just an empty suit socialist.

      • bearmountain

        He is much worse than that

    • Chris Matthewson

      When Bernie wrote, “Then who will protect us, not just from common criminals, but also from the government itself?” he was not suggesting that assault weapons might be needed against government tyranny!

      As this tragic story unfolds, it will be discovered that this extremely troubled young man was exposed to guns by his mother and to violent, but realistic video games, which he probably played incessantly and in isolation. He was also reaching the age when his mother was going to push him out of the nest–the protective cocoon in which his disturbing madness fed on itself.

      While the country mourns this unfathomable tragedy and recriminations abound, including about our mental health system, perhaps someone should examine what kind of treatment this tortured soul (the son of very wealthy parents) actually received.

    • William Custis Buffington

      Is this “tongue in cheek?”

    • Iowa48

      The reason we have Beslans and Columbines and Sandy Hooks is because schools are soft targets, attractive to the cowards who want to carry out a massacre. If it were known that half the teachers in a school were carrying concealed firearms, and that they had been adequately trained, it would remove that school from the list of potential targeting by those cowards. And if an attacker did try to repeat Sandy Hook, it is a lot less likely that he would be able to cause as many fatalities before being dealt with by an armed sheepdog/teacher on site. To think there is any other solution is to be in a state of complete denial. You will not disarm America without a civil war.

  • SCMark

    Sorry, Bernie, as much as I love you. Semi-autos at least give citizens a fighting chance against the government gun-grabbers. If we’re reduced to revolvers and shotguns while they’re carrying military-issued M4s, we’re in trouble. Probably in trouble anyway if it ever gets to that point, but my gun needs to be able to match those of the government goon squads. My liberal friends love to ask me, “When was the last time you and your gun-freak friends had to defend yourselves against a tyrannical U.S. government?” My response? “Never, because they’re afraid we’ll shoot them.”

    • OregonBuzz

      The military carries M16’s the select fire version which permits burst fire or full auto. The M4(AR-15) is the civilian version and is a semi-auto. Shot guns come in semi-auto also and fire just as fast as the M4.

      • SCMark

        I need to get a high capacity mag for my shotgun. That would help. But I’d rather just be able to keep the AR.

      • http://twitter.com/medbob Bob Kellum

        M16’s no longer have a full auto mode. Ineffective. They have the three-shot-burst.

      • http://www.facebook.com/PittyPablo Adam Pittman

        An M4 is a Mil or LE gun that is select fire, an AR-15 carbine in the civilian version. An M4 can be full auto or burst fire depends on who it was made for. Their is a lot more as far as proper designation for a gun but check what is stamped on the reciver.

      • 8===D

        omg, your so fucking stupid.

        • 8===D

          Semi auto shot guns shooting faster then the M4, your the kind of moron I would love to have a fire fight with in Iraq, because you think my M4 is slower then your semi-auto shotgun, god dam guy go get shot and if you live come back and tell us how much machine guns are scarier to you now then your semi-auto shot gun.

      • 8===D

        Shoot, if thats the case….then every army on the planet earth has it wrong regardless of the number deaths by our modern machine guns like my standard issue M4 Rifle….god, your just so….I wanna punch you in the face because your just so fucking stupid. Fucking civilians, you think you know everything about war, weapons and shooting….fuck you fool.

    • costhetadtheta

      Revolvers are semi-automatics.

      • SCMark

        True, and I love my Colt Python. Would hate to worry about having to reload after every six shots, though, against a high-capacity rifle.

    • ARJ127

      Government gun grabbers? Really? How about putting some sensible safety rules in place. Despite the raft of nut case gun tragedies, you refuse to draw any lessons from them. That is truly pathetic.

    • Chris Matthewson

      So, the bottom line is that you gun aficionados (a/k/a nuts) would not be willing to give up a few of your beloved toys even if doing so might save some children’s lives.

      In this debate it is important to realize that there are many instances of apparently responsible gun owners (and their family members) who become irresponsible and irrational for brief periods of time. During these brief periods, much horrible tragedy can be wrought.

      If anyone should doubt the truth of my statement that there are many instances of apparently responsible gun owners who become irresponsible and irrational for brief periods of time, just survey the many comments above and below this one.

      • Ernesto

        Sounds to me as if he might be a bit irrational all of the time

      • Joel Wischkaemper

        I think ole Chris makes it up as he goes along, and the effect is to make the issue much more difficult to deal with. That second Paragraph is a dilly.

      • Uncle Dave

        Chris, I think you may have a point. I mean those “evil” “assault weapons” may not fire any faster than a revolver but it’s all about the high-tech look and high-capacity magazines. So staying in that vein, we should ban all those “high-capacity” sports cars… I mean who needs a Ferrari that can go faster than 65 mph?? And heaven help us if one goes out of control and takes out a school bus.. let alone a crazy person gets up on the sidewalk on purpose!!

        Or those “high-capacity” combat knives or swards? There have been many instances of wackos like the guy in China about the same day as Newtown, CT. He killed 2 or 3 and wounded many more with just a regular knife. And don’t forget the German wacko fan of Steffi Graf who, in 1993, stabbed Monica Seles right there on the tennis court! Is no one safe in this world? I have been pushing for knife registration ever since.

        When will the Anti-gun nuts admit that humans occasionally kill humans and if they can’t get a gun (because we already have background checks and waiting periods) they will use a knife, car, club, baseball bat … We have to get a handle on the people that are flipping out. Work the disease not the symptoms.

  • http://twitter.com/PopsandSunshine Dave Andrews

    Dealing with the potential threat from the thousands of “mentally disturbed” people in society is a huge dilemma.
    Even the psychiatrists who deal directly with many of these people can not know for certain which ones will actually turn violent against others or themselves.
    Maybe there are more effective ways to identify the potential threats, but society is fooling itself by thinking there is any truly effective way to completely eliminate the tragedies like the one in Ct. that has shaken us all.
    Wiser gun control measures and more work in the mental health area are both positive steps in the right direction however.

    • http://twitter.com/pianobymoonlite Erika

      I’m sure big pharma has created it that way. We need to find out what’s going into our bodies via food, air, water. Fluorine? Seriously? That’s just one thing. We’re guinea pigs and have been for some time.

  • Irv Rachstein

    Bernie, apparently you don’t know what a semi-automatic weapon is. It is a weapon which fires a shot each time the trigger is pulled. Virtually all handguns are semi-automatic weapons. Assault weapons are a poorly defined subset of semi-automatic weapons. A ban on assault weapons, if properly defined, makes sense. A ban on semi-automatic weapons does not.

    • OldDog

      I think there has to be an understanding of the word “assault”. Anything used to injury another is an “assault weapon” be it a rock, a knife, a baseball bat, or a gun. I would say the word “assault” describes the purpose of the use of the instrument.

  • chachi

    Remember, the pen is mightier than the sword. By glorifying the monsters who commit these heinous acts, the overblown coverage and commentary on tragedies like these will do more to create future attacks than any assault weapons ban. If your main concern is to prevent future tragedies then lets put more limits on the 1st amendment that goes beyond just yelling “fire” in a crowded movie theater. Somehow I don’t think you will be in favor of that.