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Cole Parker

San Bernadino shooting

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Of course, the shooting in San Bernadino was absolute lunacy. Why shoot up a facility that tended to the needs of the disabled? What could that be but lunacy?

Here's someone else's thoughts I found interesting:

http://www.ginandtacos.com/2015/12/02/see-no-evil-2/

And here's another very worthwhile opinion piece:

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/tv/showtracker/la-et-st-san-bernardino-shooting-mcnamara-notebook-20151202-column.html

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Very thoughtful and thought provoking articles, Cole. Great stuff!

Camy, I can never stop watching Jim Jefferies, always entertaining and for me, right on the money.

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So what, exactly, has changed over the years?

When I started work as an EMT, our station was across the street from the high school. This being Texas, in the parking lot every boy's car was a pick-em-up. In the window of each was a gun rack with the BB, .22, 30-30 and 30-.06 rifles the boys had received on their 10th, 12th, 14th and 16th birthdays respectively. Most had a shotgun behind the seat as well. Guns were readily available and accessible and nobody thought twice about it. In the years I served there, the only two gun incidents in town were adult suicide/attempts.

There were no background checks, no gun control, nada, In fact, when the first feeble gun control measure was enacted in the state, limiting handguns to cops, military, persons traveling [never clearly defined], and persons "engaged in lawful sporting activities", UT sponsored the first annual "Armed Ping-Pong Tournament". You had to pack at least a .38 to play!

So what has brought the societal change? I've heard people decry cutbacks in mental health treatment as a cause, but I highly doubt that the vast majority of recent shooters would have been identified and treated and/or incarcerated prior to their actions. So what else is the common thread that did not exist in the past that has brought mass shootings into the forefront? Do we really have more today than in the past or do news organizations seeking ratings merely focus on them more readily? Is it the increase in population? Then get ready for an explosive century. Too many damned Yankees moving to Texas? Well, yeah, that's a problem, but not normally resolved with a gunfight.

I'm honestly curious what people think. Something has changed in the country. What is it, and can it be undone?

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I've thought about this quite a bit, and I believe it comes down to a profound loss of civic responsibility. I think we have seen a gradual erosion over the years, perhaps beginning in the seventies, of individual commitment to and responsibility for the well-being of one's neighborhood, community, even country.

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My opinion? It's probably a bunch of things coming together. Terrorism is on the rise, and that pulls in people from the fringes of society who want what the terrorists have: notoriety, a kind of perceived suavity and cool, a fear-factor, a perceived strength and respect. The economy took a dump and many people were shaken out of the tree who have never been able to climb back in. With that comes disgruntlement with society as a whole, and the need to identify with someone; they can easily identify with the malcontent elements of our society. The fact since Reagan's time we've done much less to support and sequester the mentally unbalanced certainly has a role. And these shootings do get lots of press, so what used to be inconceivable has become commonplace in the minds of the nation.

Throw in religious strife and more people being displaced based on race, religion and nationality, mix that with the readily availabe assault-type weapons, and you end up with the stew we're presently seeing.

As Jim Jefferies points out, it would be difficult for these mass killings to occur if the only guns available were muzzle-loaded muskets.

C

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Perhaps we should review the commentary about mental illness being the cause of so much gun violence...lately it seems to be the norm. The sales of military style weapons only enhances the mass murders of civilians so we seem to make it easy. When will the sanity prevail and put a stop to the sale of advanced weapons? Perhaps after someone uses a shoulder fired missile to bring down an airplane in Los Angeles.

But just as Donald Trump says that these massive attacks only serve to boost his support we seem to have a populace that feels that more guns is the answer.

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/gunmaker-smith---wesson-up-almost-100--in-2015-202338996.html#

I would suggest that if this nonsense keeps going that Mexico will want to build a wall to keep us out.

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I think Merkin is basically right.

But it's also worth remembering that when the 2nd amendment was written, guns were muzzleloaders with flintlock actions. Even Scalia has indicated that the government has the right to regulate weapons and we need to start doing that.

I grew up in the wilds of Eastern Nevada, so I agree with ChrisR too. I had a gun rack in my pick-up (Studebaker)with a Model 97 Winchester shotgun and a 30-40 Krag cavalry carbine on display. I seldom used them. My friends were similarly equipped and, likewise, seldom used their weapons.

It's interesting to remember that, in the old West, the first civilizing action regularly taken, was to make people check their guns at the city limits.

Guns can be regulated and they should be.

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