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Calls for gun control in US stir little support

Published: Sun, July 22, 2012 @ 12:00 a.m.

Associated Press


Gun-control advocates sputter at their own impotence. The National Rifle Association is politically ascendant. And Barack Obama’s White House pledges to safeguard the Second Amendment in its first official response to the deaths of at least 12 people in a mass shooting at a new Batman movie screening in suburban Denver.

Once, every highly publicized outbreak of gun violence produced strong calls from Democrats and a few Republicans for tougher controls on firearms.

Now those pleas are muted, a political paradox that’s grown more pronounced in an era scarred by Columbine, Virginia Tech, the wounding of a congresswoman and now the shooting in a suburban movie theater where carnage is expected on-screen only.

“We don’t want sympathy. We want action,” Dan Gross, president of the Brady campaign said Friday as President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney mourned the dead.

Ed Rendell, the former Democratic governor of Pennsylvania, was more emphatic than many in the early hours after the shooting. “Everyone is scared of the NRA,” he said on MSNBC. “Number one, there are some things worth losing for in politics, and to be able to prevent carnage like this is worth losing for.”

Yet it’s been more than a decade since gun-control advocates had a realistic hope of getting the type of legislation they seek, despite predictions that each shocking outburst of violence would lead to action.

In 1994, Congress approved a 10-year ban on 19 types of military-style assault weapons. Some Democrats quickly came to believe the legislation contributed to their loss of the House a few months later.

Five years later, Vice President Al Gore cast a tie-breaking Senate vote on legislation to restrict sales at gun shows.

The two events turned out to be the high-water mark of recent Democratic drives to enact federal legislation aimed at reducing gun violence, and some Republicans said they could see the shift coming.

“The news media in its lather to distort this whole issue may be wrong in their estimation that this will help Al Gore,” then-Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., said in an Associated Press interview a few weeks after the tie-breaking vote. “As a matter of fact, it may already have hurt him, and it may hurt him a lot more.”

By 2004, when the assault-weapon ban lapsed, congressional Democrats made no serious attempt to pass an extension. President George W. Bush was content to let it fade into history.

Public sentiment had swung.

According to a Gallup poll in 1990, 78 percent of those surveyed said laws covering the sale of firearms should be stricter, while 19 percent said they should remain the same or be loosened.

By the fall of 2004 support for tougher laws had dropped to 54 percent. In last year’s sounding, 43 percent said they should be stricter, and 55 percent said they should stay the same or be made more lenient.


1Photoman(1246 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

The anti gun group is currently bolstered by our current leader and his Secretary of State. Remember, throughout time, the first step taken to control the people is to disarm them. At that point only government and criminals possess the weapons. Law abiding citizens remain at the mercy of both sides with no one to protect them. Our founders knew what they were doing in giving us the right to bear arms--it was basically to protect ourselves from a tyranical government.

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2AnotherAverageCitizen(1193 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

For all those in Colorado that carry firearms to defend themselves, it is VERY unfortunate that NON of them were at the movies in Colorado that night. This situation could have been THE CLASSIC case for CCW, however CCW or defending the innocent still did not work. No one defended themselves or the innocent public from this armed man.

Its ashame that Rush and Beck and Company support these kind of people having such weapons and ammo.

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3AnotherAverageCitizen(1193 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago


This man was not duranged. He was a perfect law abbiding citizen that is ENTITLED to buy this kind of stuff. Remember ALL law abiding are able to buy 6,000 rounds of ammo and weapons. The NRA does not want to stop individuals such as him from his RIGHT to have these weapons.

I bet some CCWers change their mind when it is their son or daughter that gets killed at the movies.

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4DSquared(1778 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Abe, Automatic weapons are illegal. Crazy Man did not have an automatic weapon. A Batman mask cannot stop a bullet! A round or 2 from a .380 or bigger would have sent this man reeling from the shock and pain enabling others to take him down..Unfortunately, this theater chain has a no gun carry rule which the perp probably knew and realized no one could defend themselves. That probably had him salivating!

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5exlonghorn(45 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

The shooter had on "ballistic" clothing. This stuff is bullet proof in that it will likely prevent a lethal wound. Ask any officer who has had a bullet impact his vest and he will tell you that it put him on his back in great pain. Had a CCW individual been able to place 1,2 or 3 rounds center mass into the shooter, he would have likely stopped what he was doing. The object of firing a weapon at such a shooter is to make him STOP what he is doing. At least there would have been a CHANCE at a different outcome.

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6cambridge(4058 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Only a moron would think a shoot out in a dark theater would have prevented people from being shot.

Only a coward is afraid to go about their every day life without their gun.

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7DSquared(1778 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Only a coward is afraid to take a stand and not protect his loved ones! I guess you'd rather see sixty-some odd innocent women and children get mowed-down in Cold-Blood. My hat's off to you. Truly a liberal to the end!

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8Ret(39 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

You maybe right Cambridge,

but then again maybe if there would have been a moron or a coward in the theater, maybe the wouldn't be 12 dead in the morgue. Will never know

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9VINDYAK(1824 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

It seems that every few years when some idiot goes "Postal" on the general population many people want to blame the weapon for the crime.

When Tim McVey blew up the Federal building in Oklahoma and killed hundreds, no one blamed the fertilizer or the diesel fuel.

Remember, it is the human being who decides to kill and not the weapon. If he did not have access to firearms, he would certainly have used other devices, since he had already used tear gas and rigged his apartment to explode.

This guy is not crazy. He knew exactly what he was doing and had planned this out over time. He deserves the death penalty and nothing less. If our justice system decides anything less, then we have failed as a society to prevent future similar incidents.

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10BabaGhanoush(106 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

" However, the very least the government should do is to enforce the laws that have already been enacted,"

Then why do you support the party that still wants more and more gun "control" laws?

Conservatives have always believed that existing laws should be enforced and non-enforced laws should be repealed.

"and to close loopholes (like being able to buy guns and gun shows.)"

In the U.S. for 2010, there were 31,513 deaths from firearms, distributed as follows by mode of death: Suicide 19,308; Homicide 11,015; Accident 600

Auto deaths have usually been in the 40's till 2006 when they started dropping to the low 30's.
Should we then ban auto clubs and shows?

" It's horrifying to me this deranged individual could legally buy 4 guns and 6,000 rounds of ammo in 2 months."

Haven't been to a gun club have you?
There are those who have several types of firearms and shoot anywhere from 100 - 300 rounds a day.
600 rounds would be a months supply or less for those sorts of shooters.

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11BabaGhanoush(106 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

"What we need to control is Rush and Beck and the other right wing wackos
Who crank up these wackos"

So, if there were no Rush on the Radio, then this loonie kazoonie would not have shot up a movie theater?

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12BabaGhanoush(106 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

"I agree with Photoman----you can't stop crazy. Lets get rid of knives, propane gas, fire, hammers, etc. these all cause death as well."

Suppose he gassed all of the movie goers, what then?
Dead is still Dead!

Personally I remember this clip from Archie Bunker:


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13BabaGhanoush(106 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

"What we need to control is Rush and Beck and the other right wing wackos
Who crank up these wackos"

BTW he was a Registered Democrat. You own him.
Rush and Beck had no affect on him.
Because if they did, he would have blown up an Obama or DNC office.

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14BabaGhanoush(106 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

"In the U.S. for 2010, there were 31,513 deaths from firearms, distributed as follows by mode of death: Suicide 19,308; Homicide 11,015; Accident 600"
came from:


Auto deaths have usually been in the 40's till 2006 when they started dropping to the low 30's. Should we then ban auto clubs and shows?


Misread the graph. Deaths started dropping in 2008, but the point's still the same.

First of all, we have enough laws and procedures in place to keep nearly all guns out of the hands of the unstable.
This guy was NOT crazy, he was able to function at a high level. He bought the guns legally because he met all of the requirements.
Perhaps somewhere along the way some doctor could have seen some signs, but who knows.
He was always one step ahead.
He is a sane man now trying to pass himself of as insane.
Will he get away with it? It's up to a jury or maybe just a judge and a doctor willing to sign him into the nearest laughing academy.

The only other solution is if we disarm the law abiding so that the only ones who have firearms are the military, the police and the unlawabiding citizens.
They will always get guns.
What's your solution, eh?

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15southsidedave(5189 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Trying to ban guns would produce results similar to Prohibition...

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