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GUNS: Real problem is the flood of guns

Letter by James M. Albrecht, Gig Harbor on Feb. 24, 2012 at 11:18 am with 20 Comments »
February 24, 2012 12:59 pm

In a 24-hour period, a third-grade student in Bremerton was shot by a handgun brought to class by another student and a state trooper was tragically murdered on state Route 16 during a routine traffic stop.

Media coverage of such events regularly, and pathetically, overlooks the elephant in the room: Where did the guns in these crimes come from?

How can the media cover events in our community when there are two gun-related injuries (one fatality) within a 24-hour period and not report on the obvious question: Where did the guns come from?

Why are there so many guns in America? Why can a man with a criminal record so easily obtain firearms? Why in God’s name does a third-grader have access to a loaded, unlocked handgun?

This is the huge, ugly, elephant in the room. At newspapers, radio and TV stations across our nation, reporters, editors and entire newsrooms fail to even raise the question.

It’s just another day in America, where people die unnecessarily due to the ridiculous prevalence of guns in our society, and another day when the media incredibly ignore the obvious problem.

Who are the media afraid of offending? The NRA? Republican voters? As you remain silent, children in our schools and law enforcement officers in our communities – even citizens simply walking down our streets – are at risk.

The media have a public duty here. Please fulfill it.

 

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Leave a comment Comments → 20
  1. taxedenoughintacoma says:

    The problem is a laack of enforcement of existing gun laws. Enforce them all before you start whining about taking more of my rights.

    In the meantime I suggest you all man up and be ready to defend yourself. Guns and gun violence are a reality in a free country and the only ones to protect you is YOU.

    It will only get worst when the democrats let criminals out of jail so they can continue to fund programs that care and feed the illegals. Why won’t the media report this?

  2. Lack of enforcement is not the problem. Lack of meaningful laws and regulations, which are directly connected to the NRA’s efforts, are the problems.
    Japan has almost no guns and almost no gun deaths. The same is true for other countries with strict gun ownership rules. We allow the killing of 30,000 people a year with guns. It is an outrage and it is unnecessary to support the macho phallic enhancement that gun possession gives to many gun nuts.

  3. “How can the media cover events in our community when there are two gun-related injuries (one fatality) within a 24-hour period and not report on the obvious question: Where did the guns come from?”

    “At newspapers, radio and TV stations across our nation, reporters, editors and entire newsrooms fail to even raise the question.”

    False!

    The news people did raise the question. On each initial report I saw, heard and read regarding the children, it was reported “It is not known at this time where the child obtained the gun.” They asked the question! Nobody had an answer at first. It takes time to find things out. It’s called investigation. Nobody know all the details of an incident like this at the very first report. Now they do know where the gun came from. But, I’m not telling you. I want you to go read the newspaper yourself and find out that they do ask the question until they get the answer, and then they do report it to you.

    As regards the WSP trooper’s murder. At the first reports they weren’t even sure who the murderer was, let alone where he (or she) got the gun. Give it time. They will have the answers for you. (They have answers to those questions now too. Go read your paper!)

    You cannot expect the news to come up with instant answers at the very first reporting of incidents like these. They DO ask the question: Where did the gun come from? Along with dozens of other questions including: Who, What, When, Where, Why and How?

    Lighten up Francis!

  4. speakeasy says:

    IF the thug that shot trooper had earlier tried to victimize some guy with an NRA sticker on his windshield, perhaps this criminal would have bee dispatched long ago, and trooper would still be alive today.

    But then again, had that occured, we’d probably be reading a letter suggesting that criminals weren’t being treated in a caring and compasionate manner by NRA members……

  5. speakeasy says:

    (Sorry, previous letter inadvertently posted, couldn’t edit).

    IF the thug that shot trooper Radulescu had earlier tried to victimize some guy who unbeknownst to him, had an NRA sticker on his windshield, perhaps this criminal would have been dispatched long ago and the trooper would still be alive today.

    But then again, had that occurred, we’d probably be reading a letter suggesting that criminals weren’t being treated in a caring and compassionate manner by NRA members……

  6. SandHills says:

    I have no problem with gun registration – or limits on automatic assault weapons. But even in those cases there is a growing segment of the population that truly don’t care what laws come on the books.

    Prohibition created a worse evil than alcohol in organized crime, and illegal drugs still flow to those who desire them.

    Even the most law abiding citizen who has registered guns may very likely have one that is not registered for fear that once licensed they could be more easily confiscated.

    We are not Japan, guns are part of our culture – like it or not – and truly take to heart the statement from Charton Heston regarding only getting his guns from the grip of his dead hands

    The idea that more laws will restrict the acquisition of guns by those who could care less about any law is naive at best.

    To suggest that law abiding citizens should relinquish their guns, well, that is out and out being totally ignorant of reality to the point that you may want to consider treatment for living in a delusional world.

  7. IntentionalVolition says:

    I wonder whether the guns in these two instances can be traced to Roy Alloway? More than 700 illegal guns passed through his hands, and we have to consider that perhaps two of them were used to shoot a trooper and a child.

  8. Anothermoniker says:

    “It will only get worst when the democrats let criminals out of jail”

    yeah, it’s the Democrats that refuse to fund criminal justice, huh?

  9. speakeasy? Forgive me, but why is it that every gun owner thinks that because they have a gun they are some sort of super hero and claim they could have stopped the crime HAD they been there?? WHERE are ALL these crime fighting super hero gun owners?!

  10. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    Japan has almost no guns and almost no gun deaths.

    Another specious comparison from the usual suspect.

    Okay, I’ll play along; the suicide rate in Japan is twice that of the U.S. Therefore, Japanese people are clearly killing themselves at a 2 to 1 ratio – compared to U.S. citizens – because they can’t get their hands on guns.

    Following your implication, if gun control laws are the reason for low Japanese crime rates, how then do you explain why Japan’s non-gun crime rate is so much lower than America’s non-gun crime rate as well? By some estimates, America’s non-gun robbery rate is 70 times Japan’s. To varying degrees, the same holds true for most other countries where gun control laws are in effect… though not all (Russia, Great Britain and a large percentage of third-world countries come to mind).

    I suggest you learn a bit about the differences between the U.S. and gun-control countries, in other rights and freedoms we enjoy that they don’t have. You will also need to check into the socio-cultural comparisons between the U.S. and Japan before you cite further misleading data.

    Dusting-off the ‘ol Japan-vs-US gun crime analogy is just so… 1980’s.

  11. Taxed – so former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour was a Democrat?

    Publico – in Switzerland over 90% of the male population over 18 years of age are armed with military style rifles and pistols which are kept in their homes (alone with ammunition) but Switzerland has almost no gun violence.

    I have to go with Taxed – there are sufficient laws on the books that are not being enforced but some need to be strengthened to close loopholes.

    Speakeasy – have a firearm does not make one able to use it. In other words – good against a target does not mean you are good against another person.

    SandHills – in Norway guns were registered with the local records office just like deeds and voter rolls. Care to guess who seized the records in 1940 and what happened to the guns and gun owners.

  12. Vox, you don’t know it, but you made another point for me. Thanks.
    In addition there is a little problem with your reasoning when you tie Japan’s suicide rate to their inability to get guns.

    And I wrote nothing about general crime and guns. I wrote about guns and gun related deaths not even mentioning those who are wounded, which adds to the national tragedy we allow to exist in the name of macho nonsense.

  13. ReadNLearn says:

    Silly person, there’s a crime problem. A whole lot of firearms harmlessly sat in cases and other places. We’ve a lot of bad people out there and there are more.

  14. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    Vox, you don’t know it, but you made another point for me.

    I still don’t “know” it.

    In addition there is a little problem with your reasoning when you tie Japan’s suicide rate to their inability to get guns.

    Please… tell us you have a more sophisticated sense of humor than you let on.

    And I wrote nothing about general crime and guns.

    And that burst of air you felt on your forehead was the point flying over your head.

  15. Perhaps,Mr. Albrecht, the guns used recently came from the “exemplery police officer” who sold off guns not caring where they went or who bought them as long as he could profit. Not unlike the other “trusted” officer who stole from widows and orphans! The low-end sentences they recieve is criminal too!

    Barbara J Grant

  16. It isnt the “flood of guns” that is the problem….Its the lack of backbone this country has in dealing with CRIMINALS who MISUSE firearms……Everyone wants to play nice and not offend, and not hurt any feelings and be “civil” (sorry but because of unchecked criminals running among us, we lost “civil” a long time ago!!

    You want the “gun problem” to go away?? Simple solution…you commit a gun crime, and its a mandatory surgical amputation of both arms….That ends your gun offenses Pretty D Quick.

  17. hansgruber says:

    You can make the same arguement about cars. Cars kill more people than guns.

    You don’t even have a constitutional right to have a car.

    In fact, gun crime, like all crime across the US, is going down
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2011/jan/10/gun-crime-us-state

  18. This is not about whose fault this belongs to (NRA, political parties, Media) but why these 2 situations even occurred. The obvious is not where do they come from but how were the guns (firearms) obtainable. Regarding the 3rd grade girl shot by her classmate, I would ask why the gun was not locked up in a gun safe cabinet and secure? Why was that young boy able to take the gun without an adult noticing the disappearance? Where was the adult in this situation? The answer should be in the education of gun safety. Way too many unknown variables.

    In regards to the Washington State Trooper, an offender does not have any more access to firearms than you and I. Joshua Powell obtained his firearm in a manner you and I proabaly would not. Ask offender (s) how they obtain a firearm and you won’t get an answer because they don’t have a legal answer. That offender had the same opportunity to obtain the firearm as the little boy.

    The NRA or Republican voters are not afraid of offending anyone. They believe, as even some other political parties, that individuals are entitled to their right to the 2nd Amendment of our Constitution.

    I am not a finger-pointing individual but believe if there is a problem there is a way of finding a solution. If you want to blame someone, blame the government and the people who are uneducated on firearms. One reason we have more offenders out there is because of Washington State budget. Letting those offenders off supervision and out of prison early as a way of saving money in addition to cutting Law Enforcement due to “budget cuts” is not an answer.

    The media is not afraid of offending the NRA or REPUBLICAN voters. The NRA and Republicans are not any different than any other political party. It is an individual’s belief and the choices they make that determine where they are in today’s society.
    The media has a job to do and that is reporting to the public citizens the events of society.

    Just 2 of the various websites you can read about crime and firearms. I do my research before engaging my mouth to make a statement.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prohibition

    http://www.snopes.com/crime/statistics/ausguns.asp

  19. BlaineCGarver says:

    I carry a gun, because I can’t carry a cop. You can’t have mine. You will have a better chance to keep Ladies barefoot and preggers, and Blacks in the back of the bus than you will have taking firearms from their owners (legal ones)

  20. ReadNLearn says:

    We saw what happened when a social worker on a supervised visit tried to get help from a killer by calling 911. How dang long did he play word games on the term supervised visit?

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