Yesterday, yet another firearms-related tragedy occurred at the Sandy Hook Element School in Connecticut. It was the second-deadliest school shooting in U.S. history, after the 2007 Virginia Tech Massacre.
As graduate of Virginia Tech, I’d like to say how sad I am for the family, friends, and colleagues of those who were lost or injured. Your grief must be overpowering, and the only words of comfort and hope I can provide is to say, hold on. Don’t try to go this alone. Go ahead and lean on those who love you — that’s why they’re there. Accept whatever help is offered, and seek help whenever you need it.
As a retired military officer, I’d like to add some additional thoughts about how easily this tragedy could have been prevented. Not by ever more strict gun control or by locking down the school and scanning everyone who enters, but by employing the most effective deterrent ever envisioned by any government.
Before you let your mayors, city or county counsel members, governors, Congressmen, or the President react in typical knee-jerk political fashion, please remember this well-known axiom, at least among law-enforcement professionals such as those who maintain the FBI’s Crime Statistics database: GUN CONTROL LAWS DO NOT WORK!
They never have, and they never will, and for one simple reason: Criminals do no obey the law. Because of this, the only effect of gun control laws are to disarm the honest, law-abiding citizens who have proven time and time again throughout human history they’re more than capable of both deterring and stopping crime. Meanwhile, gun control laws do not stop, much less deter either criminals or the criminally insane.
What if a teacher were armed? Why do you think they ramped up the Federal Air Marshal program? How many successful mid-air hijackings have we had since 9/11?
Let’s briefly examine all the major firearms massacres in the United States over the last 50 years, and ask just two questions: Were the victims armed, or NOT ARMED? How many people died?
– The teachers at Sandy Hook: NOT ARMED.
– The students at Virginia Tech: NOT ARMED.
– Giffords and her enterouge: NOT ARMED.
– The vacationers on that Island in Norway: NOT ARMED.
– The shoppers at the mall in Oregon: NOT ARMED.
– The crew and passengers aboard AA Flt 11, UA Flt 175, AA Flt 77, and UA Flt 93: NOT ARMED.
– The students at Texas A&M: NOT ARMED.
– The moviegoers at the theater in Aurora: NOT ARMED.
Two Notable Exceptions include the Fort Hood massacre, where the only person who WAS armed was the one who stopped the massacre, and the Fairchild Air Force Base massacre, where the only person who WAS armed was the one who stopped the massacre.
Do you see the pattern, here? The pattern is that the only way to stop a shooting spree is to take down the shooter. Tackling them is extremely risky, and is very likely to get you killed. Shooting the shooter, on the other hand, is fairly quick, and any competent marksman armed with a decent caliber can stop an unlawful shooter hell-bent on a shooting spree.
Were you aware that of all criminal activity stopped in progress that more than 50% of it is stopped by a private citizen? It’s true. And were you aware that more than 2/3 of those private citizens were armed? It’s sad that less than 5% of Americans are armed! If more of us were armed, we’d have a LOT less crime!
I would also like you to consider what The People are saying in response to articles on this and other shootings. The overwhelmingly vast majority of them are calling for decreases in gun control laws, and for one good reason: So they can defend themselves! I’m sure you’ve heard the addages: I carry a gun because I can’t carry a cop; A firearm on every hip is far less expensive than a cop on every street corner; and When seconds count, cops are just minutes away.
Consider this: There are approximately 1,400 accidental deaths due to firearms here in America each year, despite there being at least as many firearms as there are motor vehicles. Yet we have 35,000 accidental deaths due to motor vehicles. That’s TWENTY-FIVE TIMES GREATER! Yet do we outlaw motor vehicles? Heck no. So, can we be rational about this? Please?
Here’s the kicker: Approximately 168,000 crimes are thwarted each year by ARMED citizens. Put simply, armed citizens STOP crime 857 times more often than the occurrence of accidental deaths due to firearms. Similarly, crimes are stopped by armed, law-abiding citizens 18 times more often than firearms are used in murders (9,369). So, are we to disarm law-abiding citizens and allow those 168,000 crimes to run amok? Really? How in the world does that make any sense whatsoever?
Source: FBI Crime Statistics.
So which political idiots are proposing the elimination of the most highly effective anti-crime tool in the history of the world? Obama? Hickenlooper? Are you seriously trying to tell myself and the rest of the American people that you want to disarm honest, law-abiding citizens when their effectiveness rates of stopping crime is so incredibly high? Do you honestly expect me or any rantional, intelligent, logical person to believe your disarmament model, proven a dismal failure at Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, Giffords speech, the Norwegian Island, the Oregon mall, Texas A&M, and the Aurora theater, is prudent? That it actually deters or prevent crimes?
If so, you really are an idiot. Disarmament neither deters nor prevents crimes! Disarmament only ENCOURAGES crimes. It leaves honest, law-abiding citizens vulnerable to criminal activity, and unable to defend themselves. It turns what could be your best deterrent or most readily available means of stopping a massacre into nothing more than rich targets of opportunity.
Fifty years of FBI crime statistics have PROVEN there’s a strong correlation between increasing gun control and increasing crime. They also PROVE there’s a strong correlation between relaxing gun control and relaxing crime.
So, folks! PLEASE write your mayors, your city counsel members, your governors, your state legislators, and your Congressmen, and tell them to STOP AND THINK about REALITY before they knee-jerk your town, city, county state, or country into HIGHER crime rates.
Yes – I’m praying for the families of the casualties, as should we all.