A Killing State Of Mind

In the United States, which has an English common law tradition, a longstanding right to keep and bear arms was recognized prior to the creation of a written national constitution. The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution reads:

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

However there is no need for a militia in the United States. Its full-time Armed Forces personnel consists of 1,281,900 individuals with 801,200 in seven reserve units. In a time of war the US could conscript 17m American males aged 18-25.

The Department of Homeland Security numbers 240,000

and commands a budget of $40.6 Billion. I repeat for emphasis that there is no need for a militia in the U.S. There are eight distinct well-funded departments engaged in the security of a free state.

It would take 10,000 words to cover all the abuses of the Second Amendment. My focus will be on single perpetrator massacres in the past 51 years. There are so many that I will limit myself to only include the most notorious.

1.8.66 : Ex-Marine sniper Charles Whitman killed his wife and mother, then climbed a 27-story tower at the University of Texas and killed 14 more people before police shot him to death.

18.7.84 : An unemployed father of two killed 21 and injured 19 in a busy McDonald’s in San Ysidro, California. The man told his wife he was going out “hunting humans” and opened fire with an Uzi, a shotgun and a semiautomatic pistol.

20.8.86. An Ex-Marine 44-year-old part-time mail carrier, who had received  a poor performance review the day before, entered his Edmond, Oklahoma post office wearing his mailman’s uniform and carrying three handguns in his bag. He killed 14 and wounded six before shooting himself. It was the deadliest in a series of rage-fueled killings by current and former postal employees that gave rise to the phrase “going postal.”

17.1.89 : A drifter carrying a Chinese variant of an AK-47 and a semiautomatic handgun fired more than 100 rounds into an elementary school playground in Stockton, California, killing five children and wounding 30 other students and teachers before shooting himself.

24.3.98 : Andrew Golden, 11, and Mitchell Johnson, 13, pulled a fire alarm to flush students and teachers out of their Jonesboro, Arkansas, middle school and began shooting, killing four girls and a teacher and wounding 10 others. Between them, they had nine guns including two semiautomatic assault pistols. Both were released from prison when they turned 21.

20.4.99 : 12 students and a teacher were killed by two disgruntled seniors at Columbine High School in Littleton.

16.4.07 : A lone gunman killed 32 students and teachers at Virginia Tech.

14.12.12 :Newtown, Connecticut. Twenty-seven people, including 20 elementary school children, were killed by a gunman who then shot and killed himself.

16.9.13 : Washington Navy Yard. Twelve people were killed and several others wounded after a shooting rampage at the Washington Navy Yard.

17.6.15 : Charleston, South Carolina. A gunman opened fire and killed nine people during a prayer service at a historic African American church in downtown Charleston

12.6.16 : Pulse bar in Orlando, Florida, gained international attention as it was the scene of one of the deadliest mass shootings by a single gunman in U.S. history, and the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil since the events of September 11, 2001. Forty-nine people were killed and 53 were injured.

1.10.17 : The current death toll is 58, with 520 injured. A lone gunman using modified weapons opened fire at concert goers in Las Vegas, Nevada, before turning a gun on himself.

(Source Mother Jones; and Dr. Grant Duwe who is the author of “Mass Murder in the United States: A History” and Sky News Reports on the most recent outrage)

In the selected timeline there were 143 incidents and at latest count 1,007 fatalities.

These incidents grab the headlines, yet the 12,000 gun-related deaths and 25,000 gun-related injuries recorded in 2015 passed unnoticed.

The National Rifle Association’s (NRA) mission statement, is:

To protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, especially with reference to the inalienable right of the individual American citizen guaranteed by such Constitution to acquire, possess, collect, exhibit, transport, carry, and transfer ownership of firearms.”

The NRA is a powerful lobby group with 5 million members who raise circa $350m in annual membership dues. They backed Donald Trump for President.

The members of this lobby group have blood on their hands but they don’t give a damn. They allege that they require arms to defend themselves and their property against crackers, crackheads and n******.

There is one other militia that serves and protects the NRA. An armed police force with north of 800,000 gun-bearing officers. In 2015 their firearms killed 843 individuals.

It would be interesting to discover how many of those involved in these fatalities were members of the NRA.

 

 

 

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28 thoughts on “A Killing State Of Mind”

  1. “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”
    This Amendment was written in a different century and is obviously anachronistic. It would be best expunged from the Constitution. If that is too difficult I see no Constitutional right to bear semi and fully automatic weapons. These weapons have NO civilian benefits.
    The problem is that the NRA is not a shooters rights group but is the lobby for the armaments manufacturers. Having the delusion that 45,000,000 guns makes you safe should a sign of mental health problems. This condition can only be cured by 10,000,000 infiltrators joining the NRA and voting for abolishing the second amendment.

  2. As most of us know , the USA is and hasn’t been for a number of years ,united,the East and West coast are worlds apart, Central America , the desert areas are left to their own,predominantly ,I Have just traveled 2000 miles up and around and left Las V on Friday,I was asked to leave a crap B Gees show as you where not allowed to record any of the show ,I did, and was asked to leave, no problem, absolute money extraction ,any way,in visiting the places ,not for the first time and hopefully not the last,but there is definetly a broader mix of people, their President might just need more than one wall

  3. Arguably, the National Guard fulfils the role (citizen-soldier) envisioned for the militia when the 2nd amendment was written. There is no requirement for the general citizenry to be armed.

    1. jj you’re a weird one. On many levels caring, community spirited and keen to fight for the underdog.

      Makes your Britnat obsession all the stranger. As right wing English Tories become ever more explicit in their desire to Americanise us, support by their bigoted loyalist Scots, you still want us to be shackled to the likes of May, Johnson and Duncan Smith.

      I very much suspect you’re an old school Labour sort. You may actually be Michael Kelly or Ian Smart:)

      But your idyll of a Labour run UK with the 3 nations getting along famously is for the birds. The reckoning is close

      best

      1. Yes I am an old school Labour sort who despised New Labour with more antipathy than I reserve for the SNP. I’m not a Unionist in the DUP sense either. I looked at the lies from Bath, saw through them, then looked at John Whinney’s leaked report, and came to the correct conclusion that we would be up shit creek without a paddle if we had voted for Independence. I was told to ‘man-up’ by those in the public sector. Others threatened to break my jaw to shut me up. Your threadbare ideological utopia is for the birds.

  4. I’ve had this argument with American gun lovers before. It always ends up with trying to explain the difference between a gun and a knife (or some other object which has been in the news as being used to kill someone) because it’s not guns that kill, it’s the person behind it holding it and pointing it. No amount of logic or derision can pull these people off that line of argument.

  5. JJ

    Could anyone put the percentage overall of gun deaths to the population of America, every death is wrong but sometimes we must look at the bigger data set.

    1. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/how-u-s-gun-deaths-compare-to-other-countries/

      Basically varies by data, but somewhere between 10 to 20 times more than Europe / Canada and similar sized countries.

      The 2nd amendment is clearly not valid to most right thinking people, but the NRA has managed to keep it simple and get into the heads of too many people, viz:

      It’s the person behind it not the weapon ( kind of true, but if the person couldn’t get hold of the gun in the first place ….)

      The way to stop bad people with guns is to have good people with guns.

      These arguments are complete bollocks, and bear no relationship to how guns are used in the US to kill people (no one I’ve ever seen has come up with data showing how many murders were stopped by non official people (i.e. not police, Nat guard / SWAT/ FBI / ATF etc) shooting the person with the gun – anyone??

  6. The mindset of the majority of Americans is that: the solution to this particular incident would have been for someone (a good guy?), in close proximity to this perpetrator who had bigger and more guns/ammunition.
    Continuing with the mindset, every person should be armed, that way you have MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction). They flatly refuse to disarm whilst there is the chance of even ONE druggie/baddie who is armed.
    They will never veer from this.

  7. Usual donation 5020-4778-7133-***0

    Often quoted on this site, ‘the only thing necessary for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing’. EB
    Alas I feel that the USA will do nothing.

    Keep up the good work! This could be an interesting month.

    Stay well, JJ

    JJ: Thank you.

  8. Never-ending madness. This is a situation that will never be resolved. I’ve heard any number of otherwise sane, rational, intelligent Americans defend the right to carry guns as if they were defending the right to drive. It’s imbedded in their psyche and cannot be reasoned away. The slaughter will continue.

    I see you continue to describe 9/11 as a deadly “terrorist” attack, JJ. It was indeed carried out by terrorists but not, I confidently assert, of the foreign variety we were so quickly told had done it.

    You have a lot on your plate already but I would love to read your forensic analysis of what actually happened on that dreadful day. The cognitive dissonance surrounding this continues to stupify.

    1. CC, you are one of my more measured and intelligent contributors. You write eloquently. I cannot deal with every conspiracy theory. I will however give it some more thought.

      1. Nose cones of planes don’t generally make it through concrete and reinforced steel, as the hundreds of architects & engineers who complied their extensive reports on 9/11 have testified.

        And here’s some footage which will demonstrate the point

    2. Al Queda Muslims, predominantly Saudis, hijacked domestic USA airliners and flew them into strategic targets.

      USA domestic airline security was notoriously poor. I personally was shocked pre 9/11 flying around the USA at the crap security standards.

      I believe the hijackers had handguns. Again USA relaxed gun laws contributing. The authorities, embarrassed, have denied they had guns. Gun manufacturers and dealers didn’t want to hear it. No change to second amendment please.

      The story that they were armed with cutlery is a joke.

      1. Such nonsense that Bin Laden’s network were not behind and wholly responsible for the 911 atrocity. Laughable and pathetic. File with faked moon landings and Hitler living in Bolivia for preposterous hokum. On that, Trump is a bumbling fraud and Ronald McDonald Adolf that needs impeached and removed soon.

      2. “Al Queda Muslims, predominantly Saudis, hijacked domestic USA airliners and flew them into strategic targets”
        No disrespect but you’d find it extremely difficult to prove that that using anything other than MSM reports telling you that’s what happened…even their own footage is highly suspect.
        The laws of physics even challenges that position ref the towers collapse etc.
        There’s so much wrong with 9/11 that it’s difficult to know where to start.
        “Building 7” is a particular doozy though.
        The absolute key to 9/11 though is to understand that when one single element doesn’t stack up the whole thing falls apart.

  9. A citizenry holding multiple firearms per person is not a well regulated militia.

    They are not a combined militia at all. Never mind well regulated.

    The second amendment was written when folks owned a single shot musket. Surely citizens are therefore entitled to a single shot musket only, strictly interpreting the second amendment?

    Or let’s not take their perceived rights away and let them have a single firearm. That would be a massive start. You have a right to “a” gun. But that’s not great for firearms manufacturers, dealers,….

    This President has only just visited hurricane ravaged Puerto Rico, he threw dry up paper towel rolls to the citizens and blamed them for wrecking his budget. 3.5m people don’t have electricity, fuel, telecoms or fresh running water. Forget action against the NRA from this guy.

    In the UK the Banks want a trump equivalent buffoon in charge….. Boris!

    Americans voted for the NRA when they voted for Trump. He told them everything he believed in repeatedly.

  10. I don’t believe the gunman committed suicide. I believe the police shot and killed him.

    In such situations these guys are not allowed to live, have trials and go to jail and await years of death penalty appeals pleading insanity.

    His suicide wounds and ballistic evidence will be interesting. Did he shoot himself three times in the back? With a police issue firearm he didn’t own?

  11. Fuckwits do as fuckwits are(paraphrasing f gump).give fuckwits access to guns and Las Vegas is what you get.amurka has more fuckwits per acre than New Zealand’s got sheep. Stay safe jj

  12. The voices shouting about the Constitution should perhaps remember it was written in the time of muskets and when invasion was a very real danger those times have changed in most respects maybe the American Constitution should also change with regards to gun laws

  13. America is a Gun

    England is a cup of tea.
    France, a wheel of ripened brie.
    Greece, a short, squat olive tree.
    America is a gun.

    Brazil is football on the sand.
    Argentina, Maradona’s hand.
    Germany, an oompah band.
    America is a gun.

    Holland is a wooden shoe.
    Hungary, a goulash stew.
    Australia, a kangaroo.
    America is a gun.

    Japan is a thermal spring.
    Scotland is a highland fling.
    Oh, better to be anything
    than America as a gun.

    (poem by Brian Bilston)

  14. On average, 93 people are shot dead every day in the USA,with black people being 14 times more likely to be the victim. at least 7 are children…

  15. 58 people die in the USA and its a world tragedy , hundreds die in Iraq every week and no one gives a toss ,

  16. Number of Americans killed on battlefields in all wars in history: 1,396,733
    Number of Americans killed by firearms in the US since 1968:
    1,516,863
    Just saying…

  17. 500 dead this year alone in Chicago, 11k deaths annually in the USA.
    So sad, so predictable and we await the next one, as sure as night follows day. My experience of this type of conversation in the US didn’t go well. I didn’t realise the alcohol laws meant my 20 y.o daughter could not be served alcohol. I politely asked what sort of country denies an adult a glass of wine but goes bat shit crazy to ensure they have a right to a gun. And so it goes on, and on.

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