Results 1 to 15 of 15

Thread: A Tough Nut to Crack (pun intended)

  1. #1
    Regular Member Eeyore's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    on the move
    Posts
    558

    A Tough Nut to Crack (pun intended)

    The latest mass shooting at the Navy Yard follows the disturbing pattern of nearly all mass shootings: a person with a history of mental disturbance clears a background check and legally purchases a weapon. Mayhem ensues. It stands to reason--in order to even contemplate a shooting spree a person would have to be crazy.

    As a refresher, consider:
    * Aaron Alexis (WNY) - history of social maladjustment and anger management issues, multiple run-ins with police
    * Adam Lanza (Sandy Hook) - history of Asperger's/autism-type problems [the only one who didn't purchase his own weapon(s)]
    * James Holmes (Aurora) - everyone who knew him thought he was bat$#!+ crazy. A school psychologist recommended intervention but was ignored.
    * Wade Page (Sikh temple) - neo-Nazi (I'm sorry, but being a neo-Nazi is a sign of mental illness as far as I'm concerned) with a history of disciplinary problems
    * Jared Loughner (Tucson) - too crazy to even stand trial; ruled incompetent due to paranoid schizophrenia
    * Seung-hui Cho (Va Tech) - previously diagnosed and treated, but the psychologist failed to update NICS IAW state law
    * Eric Harris (Columbine) - treated for depression; numerous complaints made to LE with no action taken; previous arrest for theft

    NOTE: Lanza and Harris are different from the others in that they didn't clear background checks.

    Gun rights advocates have said all along that it's the person, not the tool. So let's have a constructive debate. Points for discussion:
    1. I think there's a wide consensus that felons and the mentally ill shouldn't have access to firearms.
    2. Unfortunately, it appears our current "system" of relying on family or acquaintances to seek help, or society just assuming a person is sane until they [violently] prove otherwise doesn't seem to be working very well.
    3. I believe this non-system will become politically untenable as mass-shootings like these continue, and getting ahead of this is better than waiting to see what the gun grabbers come up with.
    4. Can we imagine a way that mental-health screening could be balanced with 2A rights?

    The devil is always in the details. It's not as easy as Homer Simpson getting "SANE" rubber-stamped on the back of his hand. What would be the criteria for being considered "sane enough to own a firearm?" With any system, there would need to be a process for adjudicating mental-health findings and their impact. But arguing about these details without an overall framework may be putting the cart before the horse.

    Flagging NICS for mental health is a start, but that only works with purchases from FFLs--unless all guns are registered. At least one state (California?) now has a squad whose sole job is to compare new mental health flags with pre-existing gun registrations, and then confiscating those weapons. On the one hand, this makes sense from a public safety perspective. On the other hand, it's potentially troubling evidence that registration eventually leads to confiscation.

    Some states require a permit to purchase. A mental health screening requirement could be included in that, but again, that only works for FFL purchases. And who would be responsible for paying for the screening in order to exercise a Constitutional right?

    All these shooters were known by family and/or associates to be "not right" but most had not been diagnosed or treated by a mental health professional. For those, there wouldn't be any kind of formal flag. The only way you'd learn about them is if would-be gun owners had to undergo the type of investigation needed to get a government security clearance, where agents actually contact family members, neighbors, etc. These investigations are slow (6-12 months) and fantastically expensive, so I don't see this option being viable.

    Anybody got any good ideas?
    Guns don't kill people. Drivers on cell phones do.

  2. #2
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Fairborn, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    13,063
    Yeah. Knock off the background checks. They don't work; and they infringe on rights of the sane and law-abiding.

  3. #3
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    North Chesterfield VA
    Posts
    10,682
    Not all felons, and not all those with mental health problems, IMHO, ought to or need to be prohibited persons. And yet some of the felons I would not have any problem over possessing firearms should not, again IMHO, be allowed to vote or hold public office or serve on a jury. The list of those with mental health problems is a little more difficult for me to sort out.

    As much as I am opposed to mental health patients in general being made prohibited persons, I am convinced that there are certain specific behaviors that I believe ought to reported in order to cause a full adversarial hearing on whether or not the individual should be declared a prohibited person - as well as believing that the designation should be reversable via another full adversarial hearing.

    For the most part making someone with a mental health issue into a prohibited person ought to be based on a specific threat, as opposed to the possibility that there is a chance that someone might, under a host of undefinable conditions, possibly go postal. It's called life - you take your chances and there is no bubble wrap you can encase yourself in and be absolutely protected. Even Howard Hughes found out that truth.

    But then the gun control folks would not be able to exert widespread control.

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
    ----Allahpundit

  4. #4
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Slidell, Louisiana
    Posts
    2,464
    We must fight any type of background check. If you can't be trusted with a firearm then you should be incarcerated. If someone has done nothing to merit incarceration then leave them alone until such time that they commit a crime.

    It is galactically naive to give the power of discerning crazy from normal to the government, even if the government official is required to have the entire alphabet behind his name.

  5. #5
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    earth's crust
    Posts
    17,838
    Quote Originally Posted by georg jetson View Post
    We must fight any type of background check. If you can't be trusted with a firearm then you should be incarcerated. If someone has done nothing to merit incarceration then leave them alone until such time that they commit a crime.

    It is galactically naive to give the power of discerning crazy from normal to the government, even if the government official is required to have the entire alphabet behind his name.
    I testified to my state and federal legislators that BR chks are useless and explained why ... they are mainly idiots of course who cannot grasp simple ideas ...

  6. #6
    Campaign Veteran marshaul's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfax County, Virginia
    Posts
    11,487
    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    And yet some of the felons I would not have any problem over possessing firearms should not, again IMHO, be allowed to vote or hold public office or serve on a jury.
    Allowing felons to vote would seem to be a useful check on government, especially as the standard for what constitutes a "felony" is continuously lowered. Presumably, there will never be sufficient sentiment to legalize, say, theft and murder.

    I might agree when it comes to juries, assuming "felony" meant "violent or aggressive offense". For today's many "felons" who aren't actually criminals, they might be argued to have singular experience in exactly how just the prison sentence they're about to impose really is – the judgment of which should be an integral part of the job of a jury, despite what the government says.
    Last edited by marshaul; 09-18-2013 at 06:46 PM.

  7. #7
    Regular Member Eeyore's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    on the move
    Posts
    558
    FWIW, Ann Coulter agress, in her usual sarcastic and hyperbolic way: http://www.anncoulter.com/columns/20...html#read_more
    Guns don't kill people. Drivers on cell phones do.

  8. #8
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Fairborn, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    13,063
    Sarcastic? Always. Hyperbolic? Not this article, IMO. The pattern is compelling.

  9. #9
    Campaign Veteran marshaul's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfax County, Virginia
    Posts
    11,487
    Quote Originally Posted by Eeyore View Post
    FWIW, Ann Coulter agress, in her usual sarcastic and hyperbolic way: http://www.anncoulter.com/columns/20...html#read_more
    "Hey everyone! Don't look at the boogeyman of guns! Look over here! I've got a new boogeyman! Crazy people! They all need to be locked up!"

    What a disgusting control freak. Is gun crime in America drastically down, or isn't it, Ann Coulter?

    I'm with georgjetson:

    Quote Originally Posted by georg jetson View Post
    It is galactically naive to give the power of discerning crazy from normal to the government, even if the government official is required to have the entire alphabet behind his name.
    Last edited by marshaul; 09-24-2013 at 03:57 PM.

  10. #10
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    earth's crust
    Posts
    17,838
    sane-sane-sane-sane-INSANE

    See how that works? Like a disease, you're well and then you are ill.

    What can be done? Little really.

    What should be done? Nothing in respect to gun laws. Its a medical issue, not a gun law issue.

  11. #11
    Campaign Veteran Running Wolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Corner of No and Where
    Posts
    431
    IIRC the onset of schizophrenia occurs in males around 25 years of age on average.
    When rights are outlawed only outlaws will have rights.

    Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity. - Hanlon's Razor

    No American citizen should be willing to accept a government that uses its power against its own people. - Catherine Engelbrecht

  12. #12
    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Mid-atlantic
    Posts
    1,507
    In a nation of 300,000 (let alone the world of 5B) some completely nutty things are going to happen and there's no way to prevent them.

    Why not outlaw backyard swimming pools? Automobiles? Road crossing deer? Big gubmint? Nobody even tries to suggest doing that. Doctors, hospitals and big gubmint kill vast sums of people, akin to genocide. Big O bombs wedding parties with predator drones. If that isn't evil I don't know what is.

    Yet with firearms with a vastly lower incidence of problems, every anti jumps on them as a cause and effect. There's even more positive outcome, since guns save lives.

    It's a false and deceptive paradigm. They don't want normal people to protect themselves. I wouldn't even be surprised if the gubmint wasn't sending guns to Mexican gangs...oh, wait...

  13. #13
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Fairborn, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    13,063
    The simple fact of the matter is that almost all of these shooters were certifiably NUTS. Everyone around them knew it. Yet they were allowed to walk around to do the things that nuts do.

    One of the legitimate functions of government is to protect our rights from being violated by criminals and, yes, crazies. As long as due process is followed, the person to be committed is properly represented and his other rights in an adversarial encounter in court are protected, courts are exactly the place to decide that one is a danger to society due to mental illness and should have his Liberty restricted--or not.

  14. #14
    Campaign Veteran marshaul's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfax County, Virginia
    Posts
    11,487
    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    As long as due process is followed
    And there's the rub...

  15. #15
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    earth's crust
    Posts
    17,838
    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    The simple fact of the matter is that almost all of these shooters were certifiably NUTS. Everyone around them knew it. Yet they were allowed to walk around to do the things that nuts do.

    One of the legitimate functions of government is to protect our rights from being violated by criminals and, yes, crazies. <snip>.
    Well, I would not support a law that would require people to call the guberment if they think that someone is a loon; nor that penalties be applied to those that do not tattle on their crazy relatives. Such a law would be so wide in scope that relatives would be tossed into the clink like used tissues.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •