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Thread: Eugene Kane

  1. #1
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    Eugene Kane

    Sikh temple shooting doesn't sway gun advocate





    In the aftermath of a horrific shooting at the Sikh temple in Oak Creek, I felt the need to talk to my "gun guy."

    Kevin Michalowski of Iola is the senior editor of Gun Digest magazine, a 60,000 circulation publication that covers the gun industry for experts and consumers.

    For a few years now, I've had email conversations with Michalowski after writing columns about all-too-frequent mass shootings that get national attention and spark renewed calls for more gun control legislation.

    Most times, Michalowski lets me know when he thinks I'm full of it.

    Michalowski sent an email soon after I wrote about last month's Colorado shooting spree in which he chastised me for not knowing the difference between an automatic weapon - mainly a machine gun - and semiautomatic weapon that only fires once after the trigger is pulled.

    He also disputed my contention that ordinary citizens weren't likely to be able to stop these types of shootings if they were armed. His firm belief was that having a weapon evened the odds and, at a minimum, would cause the shooter to immediately stop killing innocent victims and concentrate on dealing with another armed person.

    Last week, I called Michalowski to discuss the Sikh temple shootings. Not surprising, his convictions still held firm.

    "For me, it's all about having the ability to fight back," said Michalowski. "Having the ability to fight back is the first line of defense."

    Michalowski said the temple shootings only reinforced his belief that citizens should be able to defend themselves at all times. He cited the example of Satwant Singh Kaleka, the temple president killed after confronting the armed suspect with a knife.

    "I wish he'd had a gun instead of a butter knife," Michalowski said.

    Michalowski, a former journalist and current part-time police officer, fully understands the contentious debate over gun control. In his mind, those on both sides of the argument often overreact whenever mass shootings happen in America.

    "It's always an emotional reaction, not a rational one," he said. "It gives all kinds of people the chance to beat their chest about gun control."

    I asked Michalowski if he played the same game I do on occasion when first hearing about a sensational crime. For me, it's "sure hope he's not black." For him, it's hoping the story doesn't involve a mass shooting that gets everybody pointing fingers at gun owners.

    "In Aurora, the guy had a pistol, a rifle and a semiautomatic weapon, so people were able to say 'all of these guns are bad,' " he lamented. "That's not the case."

    Like many gun advocates, he talked about the danger of society becoming one where gun laws were so strict, law-abiding citizens couldn't defend themselves.

    "We don't want to have a police state, do we?" he said.

    He also talked about the failure of society to address serious mental health issues that are often the root causes of explosions of rage by deranged individuals who end up stockpiling weapons in anticipation of going on a murderous rampage. He blamed cutbacks in funding for that problem.

    "Due to the budget cuts for mental health treatment, these days most of the responsibility for dealing with these individuals falls to the police, who end up having to deal with the consequences," he said.

    After going back and forth, I realized - as usual - there was no easy resolution to our differences. But given the nature of the recent mass shootings, I wanted to know if Michalowski felt people should arm themselves in movie theaters or even houses of worship.

    Frankly, that seems to be what some gun-lovers are saying.

    He said he was just being realistic.

    "Nobody knows when some knucklehead is going to decide to do something terrible," he said. "Obviously, all of these things are bad, but I think the main thing is to save lives."

    I strongly believe shocking tragedies like the Sikh temple shooting and the Colorado movie theater massacre are glaring examples why having so many guns available in our society increases the possibility of more guns falling into the wrong hands.

    Even Michalowski agreed on that point:

    "The minute someone uses a legal gun for a crime, it becomes an illegal gun," he said.

    At least that's something we can agree on, whether I'm a gun guy or not.

    Contact Eugene Kane at (414) 223-5521 or ekane@journalsentinel.com Read his Raising Kane blog and follow him on Twitter @ eugene_kane

    Sikh temple shooting doesn't sway gun advocate




    http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwauk...165875226.html

  2. #2
    Regular Member XDFDE45's Avatar
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    Seems EK needs to read some of the things written by his own paper.

    http://www.jsonline.com/watchdog/dat...165757356.html

    ETA: Guns have always been available. The Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act was signed into law on November 30, 1993 and went into effect on February 28, 1994. Hell you used to be able to buy a gun at a hardware store with NO back ground check before that. The problem isn't how available guns are but the breakdown of society.
    Last edited by XDFDE45; 08-13-2012 at 12:38 AM.
    Wisconsin Carry Member
    My Castle Doctrine Law

    Don't wish ill upon your enemy......plan it.

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    Founder's Club Member protias's Avatar
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    Yes, because keeping firearms out of the law abiding lowers crime...

    http://jpfo.org/alerts2012/alert20120810.htm
    No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. Thomas Jefferson (1776)

    If you go into a store, with a gun, and rob it, you have forfeited your right to not get shot - Joe Deters, Hamilton County (Cincinnati) Prosecutor

    I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians. - George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

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    Quote Originally Posted by XDFDE45 View Post
    Seems EK needs to read some of the things written by his own paper.

    http://www.jsonline.com/watchdog/dat...165757356.html

    ETA: Guns have always been available. The Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act was signed into law on November 30, 1993 and went into effect on February 28, 1994. Hell you used to be able to buy a gun at a hardware store with NO back ground check before that. The problem isn't how available guns are but the breakdown of society.
    Background checks were initiated with the GCA of 68.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcav8r View Post
    Background checks were initiated with the GCA of 68.

    No back ground checks were not part of GCA68

    They were part of the Brady firearms bill.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firearms Iinstuctor View Post
    No back ground checks were not part of GCA68

    They were part of the Brady firearms bill.
    Actually, you are right. I was thinking form 4473, not the phone in check.
    I can remember filling out the form, the dealer looking it over, and saying "OK, you're good to go".

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