(Scott Olson/Getty Images)

A spate of new gun control bills are being introduced in the California Legislature, in the wake of the tragic school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. California already has the strictest gun control laws in the country. The new laws, if passed, would further regulate the sale and purchase of ammunition, ban mentally ill people from purchasing guns and impose other restrictions. We discuss California’s new approaches to gun control. Have such laws been effective in preventing violence?

Guests:
Nancy Skinner, California Assembly member representing the 15th District
Steve Lindley, chief of the Bureau of Firearms in the California Department of Justice
Gene Hoffman Jr., director and chairman of the Calguns Foundation
Julie Leftwich, legal director for the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence
Michael Hammond, legislative counsel for Gun Owners of America

  • Beth Grant DeRoos

    What interests me is whenever a national tragedy happens involving firearms certain people use it as an excuse to pass some new law that will give the illusion someone is doing something. Yet, it seems more of a pathetic game and never ever gets the majority of firearms out of the hands of the wrong people!

    Look at Chicago and Oakland. More young blacks, babies, children are killed by criminals using firearms illegally. Yet in Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel passed a strict gun law that forbids a law abiding citizen from showing a gun even outside his/her own home. Doesn’t seem the criminals in the poor section of town where people are being killed weekly care about that law.

    The solution is NOT to punish the law abiding citizen who is NOT the problem. Getting the firearms out of the bad guys hands takes money, time as well as common sense and the government is lacking in all three areas.

    As a personal note. We have had firearms in our family since they settled here in the Mother Lode in the 1860’s. But when my late husband suffered severe head trauma from being hit by a drunk driver, and had severe depression and other mental health issues, I removed ALL the firearms in our home. Because it was the responsible thing to do. Yet we don’t see much education on this type of firearm safety.

    • Jim Puskar

      I applaud your responsibility re. safety in your home. I agree that guns should not be readily available to people who may not be trusted to use them responsibly and safely. The problem is, however, that we cannot keep them out of the hands of dangerous people without tighter sales restrictions, background checks and licensing of guns. The gun lobby is dead-set against all of these protections.

  • Krishna

    Only two politically charged approaches seem to be considered for gun violence prevention. Either more guns or more controls on guns. Why not also consider a third alternative: More non-lethal defensive capability in schools etc. that increases chance of disrupting an attack? Even NRA can participate in innovating products that civilians can use to try and temporarily disable attackers. (A pepper spray that can be shot at a distance, a tazer like device, an app that can generate a loud sound, a single touch on a cell phone that can transmit emergency situation (like in banks – but with some controls to weed out accidental dialing or mischievous) …just examples limited by my imagination, but more can be thought of collectively by all of us. Remember, when a deranged shooter appears in a school, he doesn’t necessarily need to be killed. He just needs to be stopped. The current approaches seem to be moving towards arming everybody or not having arms in anybody’s hand. While we each have a preference between these alternatives, we are unable to move in either direction because of a divided people. – Alamuru Krishna @ Sunnyvale CA
    ps: If there is a website that VP Biden set up to receive ideas, I’d like to know. I searched in vain but couldn’t find one to submit.

  • Pax

    The idea that gun control will help the lay public is clearly false. It helps build up the police state, because the crooks in government fear the law-abiding public less, and it reduces public safety, because the crooks outside government fear the law-abiding public less.

    There is an agenda being pushed that cynically exploits the tragedies at Newtown and Aurora, while ignoring root causes.

    Notice how Big Pharma has never been mentioned in the discussion of the massacres. It was their drugs that made already-sick people homicidal. Yet they always get a free pass. Are they not culpable?

    What about the fact that the fathers of Lanza and Holmes are both caught up in the massive LIBOR scandal that the US media never talks about, but foreign media often do? Both were to testify before the US Senate. Just a coincidence? The probability is 1 in a million.

    What about evidence of a second shooter at Sandy Hook? Will it be ignored because it doesn’t fit the media’s pre-scripted narrative? If there was a second shooter, Newtown could have been a false flag attack. Listen here:
    http://www.kpfa.org/archive/id/87874

    • chrisnfolsom

      I suppose that reacting to drunk driving deaths was a bad reason to make harsher penalties for drunk diving was also a bad idea? What is the problem with checking your license, or logging your purchase of bullets? It is easier to own/buy guns and ammunition then a car – and you NEED a car to work and live in California, but rarely NEED a gun for much – I have and enjoy guns myself.

      • Pax

        If there are going to be sanity checks and criminal background checks for gun purchases, then we should have them for entering political office, too.

        • chrisnfolsom

          That is what part of this last hour was about – reporting mentally ill people – which is tough to regulate. So do people not go to a hospital or psychologist or possibly not be able to buy guns – and hopefully ammo too??? I believe politicians go through more scrutiny then someone at a WalMart buying guns and ammo to verify their mental abilities although I have no problem with having all politicians being checked although I think more conservatives will be filtered than liberal 🙂

          • Pax

            But every rational person know this is not just about sanity. It’s also about the drugs they’re on, which can make them homicidal (Columbine, Aurora, etc).
            And it is also about IQ. Some people make poor decisions to kill because they are too stupid to reason through the details, about whether the victim(s) are guilty.

  • Jane Yurkevich

    Consumers are being mislead by the firearm industry in thinking they are buying safety. They deserve to know how statistically dangerous it is to simply own a gun. I think government should go for a low hanging fruit of exposing false claims advertising. Government should also educate public, providing statistics for how owning a gun poses increased health risks. They have those campaigns for sugary drinks and high calorie fast food, after all.

    The link below is from an organization that tracks gun related deaths from news reports. They tracked over 830 deaths nationally (not including non-fatal injuries) since Newtown shooting. Reading news reports, it is clear that most deaths are accidents, murder-suicides and impulse shootings during arguments. Mass murders are not common, though they get the most attention in the media. Interestingly, most murders involve handgun and not a rifle. Gun use for self defense by citizens is extremely rare.

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/crime/2012/12/gun_death_tally_every_american_gun_death_since_newtown_sandy_hook_shooting.html

    • Pax

      Consumers also need to know how statistically dangerous it is to have no prosecution of bankers who ruined the American economy, or to have a corporate-owned Congress election after election that has put us in $16 trillion of debt, or to have jobs going overseas by the millions. The USA could soon become a failed state because the checks and balances have disappeared.

      • chrisnfolsom

        This may be true, but not the discussion – does this mean we should not worry about guns because there are other problems – or a problem you perhaps don’t want to discuss at this time?

        • Pax

          Tyrants take away guns. We may soon have a tyrant in power.

          • chrisnfolsom

            Who Bush is running again – or Chaney? For gods sake – they started wars and increased the wealth of the rich. Giving you a machine gun does litte for your liberty if you have no money. What worked 200 years ago will not work again. I am sure if the British had air planes, (real) artillery, large battle groups of advanced ships, ICBM’s, tank, cars, trucks and such no amount of M-16’s would have worked – yes certain areas of the hills of Virginia might piss them off, but they wouldn’t care, and no one would want to live there. Worry about the money (and where it’s going) and not the weapons.

          • chrisnfolsom

            Is Bush or Chaney going to run again??? They started wars, hired private army’s to wage wars, torture, manufactured false information to start and justify wars. Obama is trying to end the war and spend some money on the people who pay the taxes – yes and many who don’t……

          • Pax

            Obama is attacking whistleblowers rather than protecting them, killing the innocent with drones, preventing proven innocent prisoners from leaving Guantanamo, establishing a police state with the NDAA etc, paying Sunni terrorists to attack Syria’s secular leader, setting up Islamists in Egypt and Libya, and protecting his criminal bankster cronies.

          • chrisnfolsom

            I could see this going on forever, but it is strange that Obama is being attacked for policies that have been fought tooth and nail by the conservatives – perhaps not so much independents…can’t fit everything into a group. If it was not for dems beside seatbelts and the EPA – drones are being used by Obama as the technology has only matured to the level it is now – if Bush had them in the numbers and quality they are now he would have used them more as well as Guantanamo is a thorny issue – it was justified and started by the other party – you just can’t close things down – I don’t like it either – for cost as well as jurisdiction and other reasons, but I can understand with all the other issues to deal with if it has not had as much attention as I would have liked – it’s Bushes (and Cheney’s mess though – I don’t see them willing to help…). Obama knows the constitution better than most as he taught about it in college (I know nothing is perfect..) I am MUCH less scared of Obama than the Bush/Cheney or others who are much more involved in the establishment. I think he wants to do his best and will and just get out – it’s just a screwed up situation and best of all when you ask Obama if he would have done anything different he would say yes and give you a list (unlike Bush). You can always find fault in anything, but at least Obama won’t say “mission accomplished” until it is.

      • chrisnfolsom

        It is strange though that the people who are pro guns are generally against regulation of an kind (unless it is religion, science or women’s bodies) which is needed to control some of those same banking institutions – you can’t have it both ways and yes it is a slippery slope, but better than no slope at all.

    • sftitan

      Blah blah blah. Everyone’s an expert right? Thinking about going to the range this weekend. I’m sure I won’t see you there.

      • chrisnfolsom

        So going to a range makes you more knowledgeable about gun laws and safety – I do shoot by the way, but have no illusions that having a gun makes me that much safer. Looking at “real life” car crashes, heart failure, diabetes and such are my largest worries.

        • sftitan

          Didn’t say that. Just hate it when people preach to me.

          • chrisnfolsom

            I can understand that – I have the same problem with those who want to rewrite history and physics based on a book and fables assembled 1500 years ago – good and important story’s and fables, but not good enough to go against common sense and 1500 years of learning…

  • Another Mike

    We know from experience that none of these laws will affect a determined psychopath.

    Purchase of the ammunition the shooter used in Dunblane, Scotland, to kill a schoolroom of 5 and 6 year olds, in 1996, had been approved by the police. The killer was a licensed shooter, with his license periodically renewed, and the police had authorized him to own and register each of the four handguns he used to commit the massacre.

    Further, the Dunblane killer kept his handguns in locked storage at his local target shooting club, membership in which was a prerequisite to ownership of guns or ammunition. Until the day he decided to take revenge on society by killing its most vulnerable members, along with their teacher.

  • $22911251

    Skinner’s record on addressing street violence, the root cause of the vast majority of homicides committed with illegal guns, is abysmal.

  • Another Mike

    The Firearms Homicide rate in New Hampshire in 2011 was 1.3/100,000; in California, it was 4.8/100,000

  • Matt G

    I find it hard to believe that New Hampshire’s low per capita gun death rate is BECAUSE they have lax gun laws. What are some other factors that could cause this?

    • Yes, it’s a completely specious argument. NH is a low-population, homogenous, high-income state. Those things probably account for its low crime rate more than anything else.

      • Another Mike

        So you’re saying the problem in California is too many poor black and brown people? Doesn’t that sound a bit racist?

        • Well, I would say that racism is the problem, not race. And classism or issues of economic inequality affect crime rates too. In fact, I would also say that a lot of the gun lobby arguments have class and racial undertones. I love multicultural, multi-ethnic California and would never want to live in a homogenous state. But that also means we have to do more to increase opportunities for all people. And fight racism and classism.

        • chrisnfolsom

          Large urban areas – the demographics (however you slice it up) are different – apples and oranges. This has nothing to do with the point above, but you can’t compare the two states in this way and make any sense – or point.

  • chrisnfolsom

    I guess we should do nothing then? It’s too complex? It’s too late? It’s against the 2nd amendment? This is ridiculous and a disservice to us all. We all know that there is more we can do.

    • Another Mike

      If you want to stop massacres, focus on the dangerously mentally ill who commit them. The VA Tech killer had actually been adjudicated as mentally ill, but his name had not been entered into the prohibited person database. The Aurora killer was seeing the campus psychiatrist, and the CT killer’s mother was actually becoming afraid of him. Yet no one is talking about identifying the dangerously mentally ill.

      • chrisnfolsom

        Sorry, the same people who generally want guns do not want to fund Mental care – it’s a personal problem. If you bring up a single case as a reason to stop something from happening nothing will happen as there are ALWAYS exceptions. In public policy to have to shoot for generalities – which will always inconvenience some. 50% of guns are owned by 10% of America – the average American does not own a gun. As with the politics of today we are polarized with generally incompatible issues – but we need to make some decisions as the status quo is not working.

        • Another Mike

          As far as I know, no one in the legislature is proposing bills that would identify the dangerously mentally ill.

          • chrisnfolsom

            What was proposed in the article says that if a psychologist believes guns are a danger to their client then they will be reported. This of course opens up another can of worms (as all legislation does..). How does this matter if you can buy a gun at a gun show with just a license? And of course the argument that you are only going to stop (inconvenience) law abiding citizens and the lawless will just do what they want – so we should all carry weapons to protect ourselves…. no solution is perfect – nothing is perfect except your perception or idea so if ever little imperfection stops something from happening then nothing will happen which of course if the strategy of some.

  • Jim Puskar

    The comments from the representative of Gun Owners of America are
    depressingly typical. People in these groups have no interest in
    addressing the terrible situations we have to deal with because of the
    proliferation of guns in our neighborhoods; all they want to do is keep
    the weapons flowing. This has nothing to do with individual rights, and
    everything to do with helping the weapons industry.

  • Mrs. Eccentric

    it’s now 10:45AM, maybe we could hear from someone besides Mr. Guns Solve Everything and by the way i have a massive persecution complex and only answer the questions i want to, not the ones i’m asked?

    ah, right on time, another caller – thank you moderator! steph

  • Brent

    I am supporter of NPR, usually Forum does a good job of balancing out the conversation with multiple people from each side of the discussion. Todays show’s makes it clear that NPR has a bias in this program, the only live panelist are on the anti-gun side. How can this be a fair and or even reasonable discussion. Stopping the tragedy that occurred should be the priority instead people are using it to push political agendas. The person in Connecticut would not have been stopped by any of these proposed laws, he murdered his own mother (Felony) stole her guns (3 Felonies) used less then 300 rounds to commit 26 more murders (26 Felonies), the gun laws in his state that were already in place stopped him from purchasing a weapon but the fact that was willing to steal and kill allowed him to go through his plan.
    How about the fact it was said he had mental issues but was not receiving any sort of medical attention for his mental health issues. Why wasn’t a mental health expert on to discuss the cut in funding to many programs over the year that may have helped contribute to this issue.

    • Jim Puskar

      How about the fact that, despite the murderer’s mental health issues, his mother was allowed to keep multiple firearms in her home, available to him?

      • Brent

        She may have needed to do a better job of securing them, or possibly she had them in a safe and they were locked up. The media has not commented on that aspect. The key fact it was in her home and it was her Right to own them, if she left them out or gave him access, she paid the ultimate price for that mistake if it is the case.

        • Another Mike

          Why haven’t we seen the police report on this yet? It’s been a whole month since the massacre — the President has a whole list of changes to make to the law — yet we don’t know any details about how the mother stored her firearms, or how her son got the weapon he murdered her with.

          • chrisnfolsom

            I am sure we will see the report at some time – IF the guns had to be secured by the owner under threat of penalties then this might not have happened – but the law does not make this happen as the prime excuse for guns – for protection – is hard to do when your guns are in a safe…. Perhaps limit semi autos to safes or something – hard to say as there are too many competing interests, but something should be done.

        • Jim Puskar

          You make valid points. However, I think it is time to stop talking about the ‘right’ to own firearms, and to begin talking about reasonable, plausible solutions to the heinous murders committed by folks who use ‘legally-owned’ guns. I have a right to a safe, secure life, and I think my rights are being abridged by the proliferation of guns in the hands of millions of people.

          • Brent

            So your Rights are more important then someone else’s? Two important things some have been forgotten by American’s is that Rights are dangerous, that is why they are in the Bill of Rights, and if you allow others to take your Rights away you are just gaining an illusion of safety. Two quotes I agree with, and people should not forget are;

            “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!”

            Benjamin Franklin

            “They who would give up an essential liberty for temporary security, deserve neither liberty or security.”

            Benjamin Franklin

            You have the Right to be free safe and secure, but that is not given to you by the government, every law passed that infringes on your right to Free Speech, own a firearm, not be illegal detained, or be incarcerated with out a chance for reasonable bail you are less safe since your Rights ad Liberties have been taken away. If you doubt there are laws that do this read the Patriot Act.

          • Kevin Smith

            Gun control only serves to leave law abiding citizens defenseless in the face of criminal threat. Gun/weapon control has historically always been a precursor to state sponsored genocide. And yes, Adolf Hitler was a major proponent of gun control and passed gun control legislation before overseeing the extermination of millions of Innocent people. That said, world war 2 is only one a nearly infinite slew of historical examples. There are no terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan. The US military is conducting genocide against unarmed citizens in 3rd world countries under the guise of “war”, although war was never legally declared. The evil of what is happening right now is so obvious and extreme that the US has lost more soldiers to suicide than to fighting. More than ever the US government is expanding an illegal, unconstitutional police state and spy network aimed at targeting it’s own citizens (NDAA bill) and specifically targeting individuals for their political beliefs. Do not think that this time the gun control is any different than history has shown it to be – The founding fathers of the United States of America fought a Revolution and created a Constitution to specifically to prevent this from happening.

            obvious facts:
            gun laws disarm law abiding citizens, not criminals
            disarming citizens does not protect them, it makes them sitting ducks waiting to be the victim of the next tragedy

            “The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.” – Thomas Jefferson

  • Clairette Rose

    The NRA and the gun lobby have done everything possible to block significant research into gun homicides, and their own propaganda distorts existing data, so that all we hear from them and their proponents are a series of meaningless slogans like “guns don’t kill, people do” or “more people are killed with hammers and baseball bats than by guns. My father always told me, “Liars can figure, and figures can lie.” Statistics on firearms homicide need to be examined in context. We need to understand that inner city gangs and drug dealers represent only one aspect of the country’s “gun problem” — but only one. And we cannot understand this when all true scientific research has been blocked by the firearms industry. The anecdotes the current speaker is recounting are the same clichés we hear constrantly and read online from the gun lobby. It is not a solution to block gun safety regulation because someone says, “it is never going to work” Rational people who are not paranoid about having their guns taken away know there are plausible solutions.

    • Kevin Smith

      Gun control only serves to leave law abiding citizens defenseless in the face of criminal threat. Gun/weapon control has historically always been a precursor to state sponsored genocide. And yes, Adolf Hitler was a major proponent of gun control and passed gun control legislation before overseeing the extermination of millions of Innocent people. That said, world war 2 is only one a nearly infinite slew of historical examples. There are no terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan. The US military is conducting genocide against unarmed citizens in 3rd world countries under the guise of “war”, although war was never legally declared. The evil of what is happening right now is so obvious and extreme that the US has lost more soldiers to suicide than to fighting. More than ever the US government is expanding an illegal, unconstitutional police state and spy network aimed at targeting it’s own citizens (NDAA bill) and specifically targeting individuals for their political beliefs. Do not think that this time the gun control is any different than history has shown it to be – The founding fathers of the United States of America fought a Revolution and created a Constitution to specifically to prevent this from happening.

      obvious facts:
      gun laws disarm law abiding citizens, not criminals
      disarming citizens does not protect them, it makes them sitting ducks waiting to be the victim of the next tragedy

      “The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.” – Thomas Jefferson

  • Wow! I’m beginning to realize that the pro-gun lobby is yet another group motivated by fear of the other. They talk about freedom and independence, but really they’re afraid of the world. Listen to the examples given to justify gun ownership–Rodney King riots, drug-dealer break-ins, and muggings in Washington, D.C.–they have unstated but clear class and racial components.

  • Mrs. Eccentric

    oh for heaven’s sake.

    the lack of even basic agreement or knowledge of facts on this issue, much less common sense, just boggles my mind (as it boggles a few other commenters on this topic as well). It’er perfectly obvious to any honest person why regulation in a teensy-weensy state right next door to un-regulated states doesn’t show dramatic results. The great bulk of gun-related deaths in the US are suicide (as hooray!) Mr. Lindley is just addressing. The US currently has about 88 guns to every 100 citizens, so no one has to worry about ‘them taking all our guns’. The NRA only cares about mental health when they can blame ‘some wacko’ for killing a bunch of little children and lady teachers – unless someone can point me to the NRA’s ongoing mental health initiatives?

    People, take a minute and educate yourselves. Especially if you have guns in the house – i personally know one suicide, one rape where the gun kept for family protection was used by a ‘friend of the family’ to rape the 16 year old virgin daughter, one accidental toddler death, and one death of a 20 year old son who took a gun when he went into SF from the east bay ‘for protection’ (he got in a fight, other guy got the gun and guess who won).

    Just my personal experience, but it’s not out of line with national statistics. OF COURSE U.S. gun violence has more than one cause – but it’s so horrible it seems to me it’s worth trying to lessen it from every angle we can. steph

  • Really ?!?! A suggestion that a 5000 round ammo threshold purchase and law enforcement will be alerted? I didn’t take more than a couple hundred rounds for that idiot to shot up the school. Also, if you want to get on the radio and push for more legislation, you should be well versed on current law. Guns and ammo are not the problem.

    • chrisnfolsom

      Allowing the police to track where ammo flows is invasive, but would be nice to be able to do… It’s hard to set alerts, but in many of these instances a rapid purchase, or an out of character purchase – as is done with credit card abuse today – would have probably seen a strange increase by many of the recent perpetrators – that is something for statisticians and will have to be tweaked over time as with credit cards. A phone call might have helped, or alerted the mother of the recent caller. Of course those worried about government tyranny will disagree with anything said.

  • Blue Collar Democrat

    Respect my right to defend myself with what weapon and how many bullets, and I’ll respect your right to abort your own baby!

  • Beth Grant DeRoos

    In the early 1990’s our son and I took the gun safety course Ducks Unlimited gave. Was all day, two days, and we had to pass a test and then go to the gun range and prove we could hit 8 out of 10 skeet clays.I passed as did our son.

    Am still wondering how many of the anti gun folks on the show today actually own or shoot firearms?

    • chrisnfolsom

      Just because you don’t shoot ( I do) doesn’t mean you can’t have an opinion. I don’t drink or drive, but I have an opinion about that. And I have not heard too many people say NO guns, only more limits and regulation. Pro gun users are the ones saying all or nothing. If I was considering protecting myself from a tyrannical government I would want anti aircraft, artillery and many weapons far beyond a rifle, and if I just wanted to hunt a bolt action rifle would be fine. I don’t see the problem with reasonable controls….

      • taiwon

        sorry to burst your bubble mate but you are allowed to own anti aircraft, artillery, and many weapons far beyond a rifle. dont believe me? go on youtube and look up annual machine gun shoots. civilians are even allowed to own tanks. and as for us not being able to take on the great american military, well tell that to the Vietnamese peasants who beat us during the vietnam war. we had far superior weapons than they did, we even had agent orange

        • chrisnfolsom

          So I can walk into, or buy 5in AA clips? Grenades, claymores and such? I can own airplanes that drop bombs, practice with them? All I get is a gun – yes as is evidenced in many countries if you are willing to live in caves, and survive you can piss off just about any aggressor, but to protect city’s and towns and a-way-of-life you need to match power to the point of a real deterrent – If I felt like I was going to be taken over I would be like iran and try to get a nuclear bomb – they have all the ground and air weapons (not as much as us of course), but they want the bomb – why, not to use necessarily, but to have some international clout and be able to keep their cities in tact and not have to wage a ground war – I would live through any hell I was dealt, but I am sure as hell going to try and keep a nice way of life for myself and family and that is only through matching power with power so if you want to protect a cave feel secure with your pea shooters – if I felt threatened by the government I would do much more. We all know we can have all the hunting rifles we may need, but using “the tyrannical government” to justify weapons like AR-15’s and even semi auto’s is not justified. And to scare all your mates with Obama – please, Bush and their cronies were a much scarier bunch when it came to taking away personal freedoms, money and such – you guys rhetoric is getting way to thin.

  • Elsa Frick

    I think we should register all guns annually for a substantial fee and heavily tax ammunition. The funds should be directed to local governments to fund and develop community based mental health programs. Kind of a combination of programs like registering cars and heavy taxes on cigarettes. Thna bbuy lots of guns and practice practice practice. Our culture desperately needs mental health programs funded by taxes, that is what a culture is.

    • taiwon

      explain to me how heavily taxing me is going to affect criminal gangbangers who obtain their weapons illegally on the street? why do you people think that crooks who kill people get their guns from the same places i do? it just shows that you have no knowledge on the topic of firearms at all.

      • Elsa Frick

        just like cigarettes. You yourself might not die or get sick from using them but a whole bunch of people who do cost our society alot of cultural resources (time, tax dollars, health care at the expense of all). If you want to “use” its ok but you have to contribute to maintaining the resources that need to be available in our culture to pick up the pieces for the percentage of “users” that cost our culture as a whole. WIth cigarettes and gun owners there is a significant percantage of users that cause big problems in our culture and stress our cultural resources. So if you want to “use” you have to pony up for the resources and programs that are necessary for cleaning up the messes that some “users” make in our culture that tax our cultural resources.
        And, by the way, I am not “you people”. I am one of us…that would be you and me. Like it or not we are in this together. I want people with guns to stop taking the lives of other people. I think you do, too. If it is mentally ill people who come into contact with guns and then cause these problems, then lets put $ into mental health programs and have gun owners pay for it. I quit smoking because it was bad for my health. If it was bad for my health it was bad for my culture. Quitting was good for me and for my culture. I dont need to pay cigarette taxes because I decided to quit. I did my part.
        Elsa Frick
        Onsite Wastewater Consultant
        (707) 304-3015

  • taiwon

    im sorry but where does it say that our arms only are to consist of handguns? show me where it says that. and yes it does say a well regulated militia but why do these leftist and gun grabbers ALWAYS ignore the SECOND SENTENCE?? “… , the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed”. HELLO? kinda forgot that part guys! and whats with this hunting stuff? the 2nd amendment has NOTHING to do with hunting! back in 1776 if you didnt hunt, you DIDNT EAT. why do all these interviews only consist of anti gun people? at least have a fair interview that consists of equal numbers of anti gun people and pro gun people. i lost hope for all media

  • MattCA12

    You want safer schools? Put an armed, trained guard in every one of them, and stop wasting time debating yet more legislation that won’t do a bit of good. I wish our leaders could face reality and deal with it, instead of leading us down these policy rabbit holes that only succeed in further dividing us.

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