On the EDge: How many more lives must be lost?

Photo by leolintang iStock / Getty Images Plus, St. George News

OPINION — Hell unleashed its fury late Sunday night in Las Vegas.

Another psycho, another high-powered rifle, another tragic scar on humanity’s tattered soul.

The massacre that took place in Las Vegas Sunday night was unprecedented, of proportions so outrageous, so startling, so frightening that it is beyond comprehension.

And, it occurred in our backyard, perpetrated by a guy who was our neighbor.

The shooter is from Mesquite, just down the road.

The shooting took place in Las Vegas, where so many of us have visited to shop, dine, enjoy a weekend of world-class entertainment to bring joy to our lives.

Except, there was no joy Sunday night as a large crowd gathered for a country music festival on a clear, clean October night.

So far, we have heard the typical responses from the shooter’s brother:

He was just a guy.

He would never harm a fly.

He had no political affiliation.

He had no religious affiliation.

He never even had a parking ticket.

He went on cruises.

He sent his mother cookies.

There is probably nothing in this guy’s background that would have indicated that this would happen, that would have prevented him from purchasing his weapons and the massive amount of ammunition required to kill and wound so many people so efficiently, so quickly, so unexpectedly.

It just makes no sense.

But, it never makes sense. We never quite come to grips with what makes somebody come unhinged to the point of taking human life. As diverse as we are in our political and moral structures, the one thing I think – I hope – runs through us all is the value we place on human life.

We have seen this horror too frequently, had our spirits crushed by the senseless acts of cowardice by a nut job with a gun.

Only this time, it becomes more personal because it happened in our backyard.

Let me underscore that: IT HAPPENED IN OUR BACKYARD!

Not that it matters to those who died, to those wounded or clinging to life by a fragile thread, or to their families, friends and loved ones.

Still, I keep seeing the words: “This was just too close to home,” as if that makes a difference.

Just so you know, it doesn’t.

Wherever this would have occurred would have been too close to home.

Being reasonable people, we simply cannot wrap our arms around this.

We want to know why this happened and, of course, at this point it is merely speculation. The answer was forever silenced when the gunman turned his weapon upon himself and took his own life.

Meanwhile, once again, there is blood in our streets, anguish in our hearts as this epidemic of violence escalates beyond all reason.

The headlines will drive home the fact that this is the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history and we will contemplate the grim numbers. Overlooked are the husbands, the wives, the children, the friends, neighbors, co-workers who perished because somebody thought it was their time to die.

They had hopes, they had dreams.

They loved and were loved.

But, that all ended in the glare of a muzzle flash from the 32nd floor hotel room of a lunatic who unleashed his well-thought plan to execute innocent souls who had gathered for a music festival.

It won’t be long before we are told not to politicize this insanity, to let some time pass and then have that conversation when cooler heads prevail.

As always, that conversation will never, ever take place because by then, the horror will have abated and we will be on to the next news bite that overtakes the next news cycle.

But, heaven forbid we confront this demon while our blood is still hot with anger and disbelief, while the losses are still heavy in our hearts.

Today is the day to begin that conversation, to come up with a way to ensure this never happens again.

That discussion should not begin with a preamble about moral decay, man has been among the most vicious predators to roam the planet. We just have better, more deadly tools today than we had a hundred, a thousand years ago.

But, we also, as a species, have the capacity for love and kindness; the yearning for good and light; the collective intelligence to discern right from wrong as the stakes continue to rise in this fight between good and evil.

Instead of looking for somebody or something to blame, we need to look for a solution. Placing blame is always easier than accepting the responsibility that we have allowed the circumstances that made this massacre possible.

Congress is currently considering a measure that would make it easier to purchase a gun silencer.

Why?

We know that the genie is out of the bottle and we may never remove deadly weapons from our streets, but what about access to ammunition? Why are we not keeping tabs on how much ammunition or reloading product a person purchases. Our technology is such that we can, if we wish, keep track of how many Oreos a person purchases, why not ammunition? This guy had to have nearly 1,000 rounds of ammunition to produce so much carnage. Where did he purchase it? Why didn’t it raise some eyebrows?

And, why are we arming ourselves so heavily?

Clearly, a concealed carry permit would have offered no way to save one life in that concert crowd in Las Vegas Sunday night. A good citizen with a legal carry permit could not have gotten to the room and gone through that door quick enough to stop the killing.

The police needed an explosive device to take down the door and enter the room.

A moment of silence will no longer suffice.

A time of national mourning will not end the slaughter.

It is time, now, to begin that discussion on how to end the killing.

This is not the time to stifle or deflect that discussion, as has been suggested. We have done that repeatedly to no avail.

It is time to uncouple those leaders who would silence this discussion, deflect it, put it off because they capitulate to the special interests that fund their campaigns and perpetuate their roles in government rather than standing for humanity.

We can no longer just chalk it up to the act of a lone nut with a gun. That is avoidance in its most extreme, denial of the problem.

There is only one solution.

You know it.

I know it.

To deny it leaves you with blood on your hands.

Ed Kociela is an opinion columnist for St. George News. The opinions stated in this article are his own and may not be representative of St. George News.

Email: edkociela.mx@gmail.com

Twitter: @STGnews, @EdKociela

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

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84 Comments

  • Bryce October 3, 2017 at 7:26 am

    Once again I marvel at the ignorance of people that call for gun control in these situations. To the author if this article I ask a few questiins: First question: How do you account for the fact that the weapon he used is already illegal. Secind question: An exact correlation to this scenario is when a drunk driver kills someone, why is there not a massive call for car control and a ban on sports cars? It is the exact same thing. Why? Because it is absurd to think that banning certain cars will have any affect on drunk driving fatalities. The same goes for guns. Third question: how do you account for the fact that here in st. George there are thousands of homes with large caches of “assault” weapons and we have a very low crime rate here? Fourth and final question: you would have to call for a ban on all guns and a confiscation of all weapons, will you accept the blame and blood on your hands when people die that no longer can protect their lives with guns like thousands of people do every year?

    • Bender October 3, 2017 at 12:05 pm

      An armed society is a safe society Bryce. The numbers prove it. America, awash with firearms, has the lowest gun death rate per capita by a large margin.

      Ha, just funnin ya. But what can we do? Angry, impotent, old men must be armed to the teeth or we’ll lose our freedoms and the terrorists will have won.

  • bikeandfish October 3, 2017 at 7:43 am

    Like many, I stayed up late into the morning once the news hit. Its still shocking after so many massacres. Its been in my backyard twice now. After so many senseless murders the idea of offering condolences seems hollow but its the best we can do for the family, friends and communities affected (in a direct way).

    I think the majority of Americans know we need reform. But “what” reform is where it gets difficult. I’m an owner of multiple guns and have more than a 1000 rounds accrued without trying. Granted, most are 22LR which come in boxes of 500. We already heavily regulate automatic weapons like he used and its likely he didn’t have one of the relatively rare permits to own one. And they are rarely used in massacres as is. Studies from the ban on “assault weapons” that expired years ago showed little to no affect. But ARs are used in these slaughters a fair amount.

    Closing the loopholes would reduce the unreported transfer of arms from private seller to private seller. But how politically viable is that when these events make people more afraid. The icing on the cake is the increasing distrust in government which combined with fear drives the unrecorded transfer of weapons even amongst citizens many would consider average.

    I support gun law reform but I don’t know what that means. I would say talking about gun reform in general this early isn’t the problem but the rush to judgement on details of that reform is problematic. We never have enough details on how and what this soon to draw meaningful conclusions. The reality is we need to wait for investigations to gather that valuable information.

    So what do we do? Clearly we mourn for our country and the victims. Its happening too often. We pressure our elected officials to be solution oriented. But until we have a paradigm shift I am not sure we will experience much more than that. Devastating and disheartening.

  • Lastdays October 3, 2017 at 8:02 am

    This slaughter in LV was tragic and unnecessary. However, how does society ever fully stop psychopaths from wanting to kill people ?
    Do you really believe if all guns were confiscated today that gun violence would be a thing of the past ?
    A quick analogy: A drug war has been going on for 50 yrs yet Heroin and Cocaine can be found anywhere and at anytime in the USA.
    If guns were all the sudden illegal, the black market would be flooded with guns and ammo. Just like Prohibition. That worked didn’t it ?
    The biggest mystery is why a freak can’t just go off himself anymore but feel the need to take out as many as possible before offing himself.
    Is it the ultimate cry for attention ? Is it giving society the big middle finger before checking out ?
    These are the questions that plague this problem of mass killings.

    It’s not that guns are available and good law abiding citizens can have them. It’s not that they are sold everywhere and can be bought and kept in any volume one feels necessary.
    There is a moral and mental decay that plagues a very small percentage of people and they end up using guns to make their final statement. Some people don’t use guns and decide on other methods, like a car or truck, or bombs, or (??)
    There are freaks out there and they do unspeakable things to others and we still don’t know why.

    That’s a whole other discussion right there. As you read this, people just died by a drunk driver (again) somewhere.
    Why are cars and drivers licenses so readily available to people ? Why isn’t there a mental competency test requirement or background check before issuing a license ? Should people be allowed to own more than one ?

    I understand your frustration Ed, but taking guns away from ALL people solves nothing.
    What’s more frightening to me is people like you and your political belief system that feel it necessary to control my life to make you feel better about yourselves.

    • Jacqwayne October 3, 2017 at 9:46 pm

      Good commentary, you were spot on but you could have added 9/11 and Timothy McVey to your argument.

  • arrowone October 3, 2017 at 8:17 am

    Proud of you Ed as you waited a whole 48 hours to jump on the anti gun rhetoric as a liberal always does. FYI, there are virtually no firearms in France and the likes but that does not stop mass killings there now does it? You should be ashamed.

    • Bender October 3, 2017 at 5:40 pm

      Sure arrow, Ed should just hold off until the incident is mostly forgotten. After all, right after 9/11 was not really the time to talk about terrorism. Nor is right after Hurricanes Irma and Maria the time to talk about how preparedness. I get it, special snowflakes like yourself are easily perturbed. Be strong arrow.

  • Not_So_Much October 3, 2017 at 8:30 am

    2nd Amendment

    • Bob October 3, 2017 at 12:00 pm

      The 2nd amendment Is outdated and needs changed. We don’t need to take your guns away completly, but modifications need to happen now. We don’t need AR-15’s to hunt or protect us, a shotgun works better for home defense than any other gun anyway. We don’t have a need to arm ourselves for militias with assault rifles, so why don’t we change the amendment that makes gun owners happy and makes us more safe. If new gun laws can save the life of your loved one, wouldn’t it be worth it to you to give a little to gain the possibility to save someones life.

      • Brian October 3, 2017 at 2:49 pm

        History sheds some light on the need and reason for the 2nd Amendment. Roughly 11.5 billion people lived during the 20th century. 150 – 250 million of them died, almost universally unarmed, at the hands of their own governments (think Mao, Stalin, etc), not including wars between nations. If you take the low end of that figure (150 million) you had a 1 in 79 chance of being killed by your own government during the 20th century. If you take the current population of the US and extrapolate out for a century of living, based on the current population and gun homicides, gun deaths would have to more than triple in the US to reach the same level of death brought about by governments on their own citizens in the 20th century.

        That is the reason for the 2nd Amendment. Not hunting, not sports. If the military only had bb guns the rest of us could only have bb guns, but they don’t.

        Now, liberals think this doesn’t apply to us, that somehow humanity has moved past all this and that things are somehow “different now”, but that’s bull crap. Human nature hasn’t changed in 6,000 years. Which is exactly why liberals were cheering the “democratic revolution” in Venezuela during the obama administration and talking down to conservatives that were raising the alarm bells of socialism. Who did history prove right? Just ask the Venezuelans today, who are eating out of dumpsters (if they’re lucky) and the doctors and lawyers that have literally turned to prostitution to stay alive. Conservatives saw this coming and aren’t surprised at all at where Venezuela ended up. Liberals just think Chavez and Maduro didn’t do it right (as if there is a right way to nationalize everything and turn to socialism).

        I’ll stick with the 2nd Amendment and the fight for freedom and the Constitution. We have 3 times better odds that way.

      • John October 3, 2017 at 3:09 pm

        Boob !
        There is nothing wrong with the 2nd amendment. Try and take my guns away and you will find out exactly what it’s for.. you sound like a leftist ladyman… you are a veteran My …*!
        *Ed. ellipsis.

        • Bender October 3, 2017 at 5:35 pm

          That’s the spirit bud! Even though you’re a frightened man-child with an inferiority complex and a gun fetish you still got the right to throw shade on them boobs that wanna take away your precious. Dream on of the vengeance you’ll wreak… sweet bloody, righteous justice.

        • Bob October 3, 2017 at 6:57 pm

          Attacking a veteran, you are such a tough guy now. I don’t need to prove my service to anyone, especially a whiny little man like you. Tell that to the families of the dead veterans who were murdered in Las Vegas on Sunday. Your comments just prove the kind of person you really are.

          • John October 3, 2017 at 8:45 pm

            Boob.you aren’t a veteran… I am a decorated veteran.. you are a draft dodging girly man cross dressing fool. And i will op[en up a ton of 2nd amendment on anybody who tries to take it away..and yes you are a liberal and special Ed is a moron

      • Ladyk October 5, 2017 at 11:16 pm

        Bob the 2nd amendment assures the People to defend themselves against the government. How is that even possible if the government outguns everyone? I realize that we can’t have personal tanks in every neighborhood or personal jets flying your average person around the sky, but I won’t allow anyone to take my guns an ammo.

  • Sapphire October 3, 2017 at 9:06 am

    You can’t legislate crazy people any more than you can legislate any unexpected event. You can’t stop crime by making the majority of citizens defenseless. You can’t get rid of guns when they can be bought on the black market and brought across our uncontrolled borders and sold to criminals. If people want something, they will get it. Law abiding, responsible citizens don’t hurt others and do not need to be governed. Bad things happen; we grieve and we move on.

  • DRT October 3, 2017 at 9:07 am

    I don’t know what the answer is. In fact, I don’t believe there is an answer. Of course, it didn’t take more than a few hours until Hillary and her like, started using this tragedy to push the gun control mantra.

    • Bender October 3, 2017 at 5:41 pm

      Bingo, Hillary is the real devil here.

  • JJODL October 3, 2017 at 9:18 am

    So we’re to believe the same liberals that have supported killing almost 60,000,000 babies since 1973 for birth control have a gun control solution?

  • Jason October 3, 2017 at 9:43 am

    Is it me or does the opinion/on the edge section seem to be leaning left?

    • St Geo October 4, 2017 at 5:32 pm

      Special Ed is a left leaner alright.

    • Bob October 3, 2017 at 7:17 pm

      😴 blah blah blah im bored with you. Go away

      • John October 3, 2017 at 9:06 pm

        Boob.. your’e a democrat too..you tired of losing yet?

    • bikeandfish October 4, 2017 at 12:57 am

      Wow, I have seen junk science in my life but that takes the cake. There is nothing accurate in those methods or findings. Its clearly written by someone with an agenda and no training in statistics. Robert Farago, the author, is a journalist and hypnotist with no credentials related to this type of research.

  • Curtis October 3, 2017 at 10:00 am

    I’m not entirely sure what the little side trip about concealed carry had to do with the column. Concealed carry had nothing to do with this massacre and have had nothing to do with any previous incidents.

    “There is only one solution. You know it. I know it.”
    Just in case I don’t know it Ed why don’t you spell it out ??

  • max October 3, 2017 at 10:02 am

    This article proves how stupid people can be. This idiot should move to Mexico where guns are banned and see how quickly he gets shot from drug cartels that rule the country!
    I would like to start a petition for the following, and judging by this article, the author would be in support of it.

    Ban spoons for making Americans fat
    Ban cars so people cant drive drunk
    Ban pencils so we cant miss spell words

    People will always kill each other. It is an innate part of existence on this earth, both animal and human alike. Stick any two things together and in time, one will kill the other. It even happens in my garden. Dang weeds always kill my flowers. We should ban weeds!

    A few things to always remember:
    1st) If you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have them. Good luck protecting your self!
    2nd) A quote from Benjamin Franklin: ” Any person who gives up freedom for a sense of security shall have, nor deserves, neither”

    • Bender October 3, 2017 at 12:14 pm

      Righto Max. The rest of the developed world has it wrong with their low gun death rates. I mean look at the Australians with their gun laws which completely emasculate red blooded men who need to be packin and carryin. What’s an occasional massacre compared to the tactile pleasure of firearm and the dream of exacting vigilante justice to commies, arabs and libruls. The constitooshun gives a pure blooded American the right to softly caress his arsenal in the sanctity of his basement arsenal; oiling and rubbing, oiling and rubbing.

      • Real Life October 3, 2017 at 5:47 pm

        Wow

      • Ladyk October 5, 2017 at 11:45 pm

        Bender your argument is flawed. First of all if you look at the numbers in Australia the gun crime was going down long before they banned guns. They took a tough stance on crime and did other social programs so the need for some gun related crimes went down. However, I have friends who live there and they tell me that the criminals still have guns and still cause the majority of the problems. The difference now is no one stands up to them so they don’t have to kill to get what they want.

        Most people are looking for ways to get the law changed so they can protect themselves again. Also not all guns were banned.

  • NickDanger October 3, 2017 at 11:16 am

    Remember, if you outlaw MK Ultra, only the CIA will have MK Ultra.

    • Bender October 3, 2017 at 5:45 pm

      Dude, don’t get me started. When is the common, patriotic man gunna get access to heavy artillery, armed drones and freaking flame throwers? If the pre-WWII German populace had each had access to c-4, det cord and Browning M2s. Well then, clearly, no Hitler. Take that libs.

      • John October 3, 2017 at 9:10 pm

        Bender, DI just had a sale on Flame throwers. didn’t you get two or three? You missed out man..

  • ladybugavenger October 3, 2017 at 11:29 am

    government cannot solve this problem.
    It’s evil in a mans hearts and gov’t can’t stop evil

    • blueford October 3, 2017 at 12:18 pm

      You are correct and there is no way to know or to protect from a person with such evil in his heart he will find a way. One thing they say about this person, No religious affiliation. We can only guess why he did what he did, and what he believes, But without God in your heart every day and a solid belief system in a God. There is no way to know how to care and love others.

    • bikeandfish October 4, 2017 at 12:48 am

      The guy definitely acted with evil and extreme mallace in this massacre.

      But that doesn’t mean we just give up. They have released more details about his armory and some of the features make massacring large groups of people easier. Bump stocks only serve a handful of purposes: hobby target practicing and killing humans efficiently. They are illegal for hunting so that is not an excuse. Who wants to spray 900 rounds a minute in a home intrusion? That is some nonsensical Way Rambo sort of approach to home protection that increases bystander injury and death.

      We may not be able to stop all acts of evil but we can definitely try to slow the rate of mass murders down and reduce the number of civilians killed at the hands of fellow Americans.

      • John October 4, 2017 at 1:04 pm

        Name one new law that could have prevented this! You can’t !…the problem isn’t the laws….you lose. Bombs, trucks, poison and illegal weapons will always be there. Stupidity and immorality are the culprits and you can’t legislate those.

        • bikeandfish October 4, 2017 at 3:25 pm

          Ban on bump stocks for one since he had several rifles outfitted with them. GOP is already considering hearing on the technology and modifications that allow the manipulation of a semi-automatic into such high rates of fire. Time will tell what type of extended capacity his weapons had which should also be up for consideration if it was on the guns he used. Both of those allowed him to indiscriminately shoot hundreds or thousands of rounds in the 10-12 minutes it took him to massacre 59 people and injure 500+ more. Eliminate those options and its likely the number of casualties would have been significantly reduced.

          Biggest thing will be the police and FBI reports and a willingness to create political solutions that impact the ease of a massacre like this. We shouldn’t be expected to just deal with these events that are happening more rapidly and with higher death tolls.

          • John October 4, 2017 at 9:20 pm

            Tell us how more laws will stop a terrorist’s bullet from crashing through your skull. Since you think more laws will help. Go ahead, we’re waiting …

        • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 12:12 am

          I named several bans that could help reduce casualties. Laws can’t prevent every illegal activity but that can make it alot more difficult to kill so many people with such ease. Reducing his rate of fire at 400+ yards could have saved plenty of lives and reduced casualties substantially. He used those and large magazines to inflict maximum damage in a short time.

          Simply don’t understand citizens who aren’t even willing to try. We managed to slow the tide of terrorism in the US after 9/11. Imagine where we would be now if we all just acquiesced and quit trying to problem solve on Sept. 12th.

          There should be some issues that bring everyone to the table in good faith. This is one. We can support gun owners and the 2nd Ammendment and still be willing to put a dent in this crazy American problem.

          • John October 5, 2017 at 11:09 am

            You still haven’t told us how a law will stop a terrorist’s bullet from crashing through your skull ! BTW sales of bump stocks has gone through the roof because of the ruckus. Legislation is only the answer if you think only law abiding citizens are doing all the crime..It won’t work, logic says it won’t work any better that a stop sign can stop your car . No law can stop a car from running into a crowd of people. No law can stop a crazy from bashing your head with a bat. The only law that really works is the law of gravity. Sorry but I trust the 2nd Amendment before I trust any politician who is out only to get re-elected ( all of them). and we are not holding our breath for your answer because you don’t have an answer….happy biking

          • Ladyk October 6, 2017 at 12:01 am

            There are several ways to make a semi auto weapon into a full auto. Bump stocks are only 1. There a blueprints you can download and print off that show you how to modify a gun. Bump stocks are legal because they don’t modify the gun, modifying the existing gun to make it an auto is illegal. The point I am making is that there is no way to stop this. If someone wants to modify their gun they will find a way to do it. If someone wants to kill a bunch of people they WILL find a way to do it.

        • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 11:54 am

          Your parameters and question are absurd, John, which a constant theme of yours. No law can prevent every crime and few folks justify law for that reason. But we still legislate because we can reduce the incidence of such crime and make attempting them much harder.

          Do you actually care about saving lives in this moment? Because right now you seem more motivated by extreme talking points than actual solutions. I think most Americans would agree that reducing the severity of injuries and number of dead would be a step in the right direction. GOP moderates are breaking ranks on the stalemate and vocalizing concern about bump stocks and other tools that allow legal semi automatic weapons to operate like automatic ones. That is a solution.

          • John October 5, 2017 at 12:26 pm

            so your answer is still more legislation? I’m giving you a point that you have yet to answer.. How is more legislation going to stop a bullet from crashing through your skull?.There are already enough LAWS..and not one of them will stop a bullet.. a law can’t even stop shoplifting.. More law is not the answer. liberal logic always has a flaw. they never think it through and in practical application nothing they propose has worked. Laws are for people who follow them. Infringing on the 2nd Amendment is not applicable here. If you think it is , you’re not very bright. go ride your bike and pray the law will keep you from falling off…

          • John October 5, 2017 at 12:50 pm

            So, it’d be nice if you folks on the left would take your gun control laws and your anti-freedom agenda and stuff it.

            We’ll keep the 2nd Amendment, thank you very much.

          • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 1:31 pm

            If you are going to troll, John, at least get good at it. Most of the time I post to people like you because of the readers that lurk but this event is too big.

            I didn’t answer the question you asked because its taking the entire issue to the extreme and absurd. If we followed your fallacious logic we would never pass legislation. Instead, we focus on solutions that mitigate problems because we are driven to do better. Stop signs don’t stop people from running them but they help reduce the number of collisions at intersections. Speed limits don’t stop people from excessive speeding but it reduces the number of hazardous drivers on the road which in turn reduces the rate and severity of accidents. Banning bump stocks won’t eliminate all casualties by gunmen in mass shootings but it will reduce the likelihood of such events and hopefully reduce the number of casualties in one event.

            As a gun owner, for hunting and home protection, there is no good reason we should accept these tools of mass destruction for the average citizen. We already banned automatic weapons as a nation and the 2nd Ammendment rights still hold up. Banning bump stocks isn’t an infringement on the 2nd any more then most existing laws that ban machine guns, grenade launchers, etc. We make reasonable legal decisions in moments like this as we have to constantly weigh the costs to society. None of the protections in the Bill of Rights are absolute in this democracy. And I say that as I critique the constant complaints by the left about ARs and quantity of ammunition. I own more guns than most of my liberal friends think is appropriate and work hard to educate them on the realities of gun technology and nuanced use. But nothing in that moderate view is willing to justify citizens owning technology that can shoot 900+ rounds a minute.

            Extremist 2nd amendment ideology that folks like you spout isn’t rooted in history, law or civil discussion. Unfortunately the left has their own firebrand kneejerk extremist ideology as well and its folks in both those groups that are eroding any ability for us to solve an escalating problem in society. But I take hope in the fact that moderates are standing up more and actually focusing the conversation on solutions. The fact remains that no matter how hard extremist on both sides try to claim we are divided on everything the reality shines through that there are some things most Americans want to solve. And the rate and scale of mass shootings is one such issue.

            And it takes more than legislation but it is one piece of the complex puzzle.

            But keep being lazy in rhetoric and call me names and make assumptions. I am fully aware that we can’t change the minds of people who troll internet websites like you do but make no mistake that folks like me will no longer buy into the failed logic of “don’t feed the trolls” and instead will expose the laziness and fallacious nature of your ideas.

          • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 1:37 pm

            And you know its an acceptable request when even the NRA states that “devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully-automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulations”. They just made a rare political statement in support of exactly what I have been advocating. And this is from largest 2nd Amendment protection special interest group in the nation.

          • John October 5, 2017 at 1:49 pm

            NO..You didn’t answer the question because it is a REAL question and a real issue. How are more laws going to stop a bullet from passing through your skull? you simply do not have an answer to that, just like every other liberal talking head who thinks they are so smart. More laws will do absolutely nothing to prevent these kinds of attacks. Wishful thinking will get you that free unicorn too ! So, it’d be nice if you folks on the left would take your gun control laws and your anti-freedom agenda and stuff it.

            We’ll keep the 2nd Amendment, thank you very much.

          • John October 5, 2017 at 2:10 pm

            As i will continue to expose the closed minded stupid lefttards ..;why can’t you answer the question? How is more legislation going to prevent a bullet from crashing through your skull? That’s my point.. ban all the weapons you want, it won’t change the fact that if somebody wants to shoot you they will. period.. Answer the question, it’s not unreasonable. Bump stocks, no bump stocks won’t make a damn difference. I just wrote a law that says you won’t hit the ground when you fall of your bike, like you are falling off of your platform now..hahahaha! your good intentions mean nothing in this issue. just look how all the laws banning illegal drugs has worked. There’s your proof . Laws are useless if people don’t follow them

          • John October 5, 2017 at 2:14 pm

            Bike. you are equating a terrorist attack to a person running a red light and t-boning somebody? you should run for office, that’s simply brilliant.. liberalism and common sense can not exist in the same space and you are absolute proof of that

          • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 2:54 pm

            John said ” logic says it won’t work any better that a stop sign can stop your car ” and then complains about “equating a terrorist attack to a person running a red light and t-boning somebody.” Individuals like John will do anything to make sure the conversation is so muddled as to be useless, its a type of intentional logical fallacy that tries to derail any and all civil discourse.

            I guess we can add the NRA to liberal, snowflake, libtards who want to strip Americans of their 2nd Amendment rights.

            The meme that laws are just people who follow them is a joke. Its a boundary society sets up knowing most people will follow them while setting up legal standards to consequence those who don’t. And in this case it could prevent manufacturers from selling bump stocks to American citizens. There is no way will be retroactive or affect those already in circulation, ie existing stocks would be grandfathered in like automatic weapons were. That, just like the 1930s ban, will eventually make them relatively rare and difficult to acquire. That is a real affect on gun crime.

            Unfortunately we see the lazy logic emblematic by John’s statements more often now. If you happen to think that there are legislative solutions you are “not very bright” and should “stuff it”. Its a dumbing down of conversations that has become so common on the internet that leaves a handful of extremist left to fight it out. In reality, the country, its legislators, and courts have constantly supported creating gun laws that reduce access to technology that is not appropriate for civilian populations. And when legislators go to far, like in Chicago and DC, the courts shut it down. But we are stuck with these absolutist voices on the internet who have such an ahistorical and ignorant view of the Constitution and law that we are led to believe their is no solution or middle ground. Even the NRA made it clear that is not true after they announced an interest in regulations for bump stocks today.

            John will keep yelling and name calling but everything I have seen is he is a minority voice whose ascendancy is ended. The alt-right trolling of 2015-2016 has been exposed for the intellectual bankruptcy and reactionary provocation it always was. People are onto the simplistic tools they use. Name calling has no affect other than exposing personal hate. People want solutions not just the catharsis folks like John want to massage. They will never disappear but their relevance will fade in time.

          • John October 5, 2017 at 3:42 pm

            equating a terrorist attack is the same as running a stop sign is your inane statement.. This incident had nothing to do with the NRA just as you have no facts to support your argument. you still haven’t saisd how more legislation will protect you from being hit by terrorist bullets. Nothing will stop a crazy from blowing your head off if they so desire. what part of that do you not understand? You are the one who think a law will magically stop your car at the stop sign.. you are the one who thinks a law will stop a terrorist because it’s a gun free zone. you are the one who thinks a law will stop teenage pregnancy. You are the one who thinks a law will prevent you from scraping your knee when you fall off your bike. You are the one that thinks laws will stop illegal drugs..you are a liberal and that means you don’t know reality. you are dense and wrong, completely wrong..

          • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 6:42 pm

            Nice try

            John said “logic says it won’t work any better that a stop sign can stop your car” and then claims such comparisons are insane.

          • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 6:59 pm

            oops, spellcheck kicked in and I didn’t catch it. Should clearly read inane.

          • John October 5, 2017 at 8:47 pm

            Bike, you are still wrong! Laws can not stop bullets. plain and simple, protecting yourself is the answer. That’s all. Don’t interfere with people’s rights to do that ! They have enough background checks. Nothing will stop these types of attacks. Nothing. Not even your magic bike and fish. ! Talk all you want ! Legislate all you want ! Nothing you say or decree will stop the next attack. 2nd Amendment will stay as it is. Murder was outlawed by the 10 Commandments, you see how well that worked. Laws are only for people who choose to follow them. That’s why mass nutcase shootings and terrorist attacks happen in “GUN FREE ZONES” Because legislation has made the people in those zones easy targets. Proof that they didn’t think that one through. Legislation is not the answer, Vigilance and awareness are all you have my friend. No law can protect you, Be prepared to protect yourself ! Always have a plan and be aware of where you are. You are a fool if you believe you are safe because you are in a “GUN FREE ZONE” you are a target for some crazy..Just trying to save your life, that’s all

  • Maria October 3, 2017 at 8:20 pm

    This old man was framed !!

    • Bender October 3, 2017 at 9:15 pm

      Well, duh! Of course he was framed. Despite every bit of evidence the most likely explanation is a vast, coordinated false flag attack and cover-up by hundreds of people. The simplest explanation is usually correct. Do you have a blog? I’d hate to miss any more sweet gems like this.l

    • Ladyk October 6, 2017 at 12:47 am

      That’s exactly why he shot himself…. wow

  • commonsense October 3, 2017 at 9:46 pm

    Liberals want all guns in the hands of the government. Really? In our current political milieu do liberals really want the Republican controlled executive branch to have all the guns? Has the BLM signed off on police having all the guns?

    The 2nd amendment was designed to protect civilians from a corrupt government.

    In Europe where guns are outlawed, bombs, cars, trucks and knives are used to kill people.

    In this case the shooter was a gambling addict. He bought all that weaponry with gambling money.
    Maybe we should look at the whole Nevada culture of gambling crime.

    • John October 3, 2017 at 10:11 pm

      and he was a millionaire,,,according to the story he wasn’t a very good gambler

    • Bender October 3, 2017 at 10:16 pm

      Is there any limit on the weaponry a private citizen should be allowed to own and deploy against a possibly corrupt government? The wording in the 2nd amendment is “Arms”. Should a private militia be restricted from owning and drilling with grenade launchers, artillery, armed aircraft, bomb bearing drones, etc? If not, who determines the dividing line between allowed and dis-allowed arms?

  • Icomments2 October 3, 2017 at 10:35 pm

    Well can’t have gun control let’s put a ammo control instead. That makes sense right? Not one of you mention that in your comments. He did say to control how much ammo a person can purchase. Any thoughts on that?

    • bikeandfish October 4, 2017 at 12:40 am

      Difficult task. How many rounds is appropriate? In the aggregate or per weapon? I am a moderate who owns 2 shotguns, 1 22LR and a .308. All are hunting weapons. In the past 8 years of hunting I have accrued probably 1400 rounds of ammunition that is dedicated to different endeavors: steel shot for migratory waterfowl, lots of 22LR that came in 500 round boxes for cheap, various shot sizes of traditional lead shells for upland game, 100-200 rounds for deer and elk hunting. Doesn’t take much to accumulate ammunition when you hunt. And that doesn’t include people that target practice at the range and can go through a couple hundred rounds in a sitting with smaller caliber rifles and handguns.

      The news is coming out that he used a “bump stock” that allowed his semi-automatic rifle like an automatic that was able to shoot upwards of 900 rounds a minute. That seems to be a fair target and starting place but gun hobbyist have already fought that regulation for years. They are legal as they don’t permanently modify the weapon. But its going to be hard to not own their role in this massacre if that was the weapon/tool used to shoot at the crowd.

      I sincerely hope moderate gun owners pressure the right to come to the table and left-leaning voters encourage their reps to stop jumping to conclusions right on the heal of mass shootings so we can actually start finding potential solutions. We need to end this predictable stale mate as too many people are dying.

    • bikeandfish October 4, 2017 at 1:00 am

      I appreciate you asking. What are your thoughts?

  • Ryan October 4, 2017 at 11:03 am

    If we teach the value of life the problem goes away. PERIOD. It isn’t the gun, it is the lack of respect for human life. If both sides would put as much effort and resources to teach that every life has value and that killing is unacceptable; we wouldn’t have this issue.
    But it is so much easier to blame the gun.
    This was in a gun free zone, with already banned weapons.
    How is that gun legislation working out for you?

  • deseret dave October 4, 2017 at 11:16 am

    ED….your comments are verbose to the extreme….I read you editorial and couldnt find a direction…..I f you are for gun control…STATE IT..Dont dance around and leave the reader confused….The 2 nd ammendment is straight forward…..A procedure is in place to change it..however that will never happen……Des dave

  • ladybugavenger October 4, 2017 at 1:26 pm

    Joshua 24:15King James Version (KJV)

    15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

    So many want God taken out of society, out of schools, out of homes, out of their lives….welcome to a potential Godless society. If you don’t have Jesus, you have Satan. Choose Jesus! Bring prayer back in schools!

  • vintagehippie October 4, 2017 at 7:30 pm

    Ed, I’m sure that you are convinced that if guns are outlawed that people will keep killing each other. And I’m sure that you believe that people will not use cars, bombs, fires, knives, etc., to kill other people.

    I also wish I had a unicorn.

  • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    So tired of this liberal garbage (insert sarcasm) from the NRA:

    “In the aftermath of the evil and senseless attack in Las Vegas, the American people are looking for answers as to how future tragedies can be prevented.

    “Unfortunately, the first response from some politicians has been to call for more gun control. Banning guns from law-abiding Americans based on the criminal act of a madman will do nothing to prevent future attacks. This is a fact that has been proven time and again in countries across the world.

    In Las Vegas, reports indicate that certain devices were used to modify the firearms involved. Despite the fact that the Obama administration approved the sale of bump fire stocks on at least two occasions, the National Rifle Association is calling on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) to immediately review whether these devices comply with federal law.
    The NRA believes that devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully-automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulations.
    In an increasingly dangerous world, the NRA remains focused on our mission: strengthening Americans’ Second Amendment freedom to defend themselves, their families and their communities.
    To that end, on behalf of our five million members across the country, we urge Congress to pass National Right-to-Carry reciprocity, which will allow law-abiding Americans to defend themselves and their families from acts of violence.”

    They openly call to talk about additional regulations for these devices. When the NRA steps in you know there is no meaningful controversy over such calls for reform. I just hope the left is willing to meet there and accept a nuanced, specific response to this mass shooting instead of trying to load it up with regulations unregulated to this event.

    • John October 5, 2017 at 7:49 pm

      Bike, you are so misinformed it hurts…I can’t laugh much longer! your libtard is showing again ! We’re still waiting for the your ideas for legislation that will stop bullets !!! Nothing would have stopped that maniac in Vegas. No law is going to stop the next nutcase. It just isn’t going to happen. Laws can only do so much. what do you propose to do about the hundreds of thousands of bump stocks already out there ? Confiscate them? Good luck with that !

      • bikeandfish October 5, 2017 at 8:23 pm

        What was misinformed about this post? It was the NRA statement word for word.

  • Ladyk October 5, 2017 at 10:04 pm

    I am so sick of the hypocrisy. This man intended to do harm. He intended to kill as many as possible. If it hadn’t been by a gun it would have been the car bomb. If he couldn’t do that he would have found another way. Would the amount be smaller, probably but I think you will find that the majority of people injured were not by bullets but from I juries sustained by going over fences or being trampled. One gun shot victim is to many, but so is those his by bombs or cars or the 45% of murders that are committed by a knive/blade. Or my biggest pet peeve, how about the thousands killed/injured every year by drunk/impared drivers. Ed if you are calling for the ban of guns are you man enough to call for the end of alcohol sales? I highly doubt it.

    I am sick of the hypocrisy of the democrats who stand up and call the millions of members of the NRA horrible people but they themselves are willing to ignore every other statistic. The right to drink and drive is not in the constitution but the right to defend ourselves against an evil government is. Gun violence is real and I believe there are some common sense solutions. I also believe it is only 1 step in the fight against evil. Since the dawn of man we have had to fight against those who would seek to destroy us, but Cain didn’t need a gun. If you are going to write an article against the killing of innocent people at least consider all innocents that die by the hand of others. Not just the ones that you single out.

    • Ladyk October 6, 2017 at 1:11 am

      Sorry, I meant Bill of Rights. Also why should my rights be infringed because some madman took it to the worst possible extreme? We have about a dozen guns in our home. Does that put us in the “crazy gun owner” category? What if I told you all but 2 were passed down after grandfather, father and brother-in-law passed away, does that change your opinion of me. Limiting the millions of gun owners from being able to own and operate our guns in a legal and safe manner is not fair. I think it should only be legal to drink alcohol when you are in your home and your car keys are locked up and can’t be unlocked until you can blow a 0.0, but that still won’t stop some idiot from finding a way to kill someone else or themselves because they are drunk. Or just die from drinking to much. Or smoking, let’s make smoking illegal. I have severe lung damage from second hand smoke from a workplace that allowed smoking 30 years ago so can we ban all forms of smoking so no one else dies from second hand smoke? Or the cost of healthcare because of tobacco. It’s horrible that so many lives are taken by guns, but I can point to all these other things that hurt or kill way more people but no one wants to outlaw those things. Let’s have some serious conversations but let’s put it in perspective.

      • bikeandfish October 6, 2017 at 10:14 am

        I want to get your theme but its basic premise is historically wrong. People have constantly advocated legislative control of items dangerous to citizens. People openly talk about regulating alcohol and we live in a state the clearly and openly infringes on safe, adult consumption because of how a minority abuse the substance. Same goes for hundreds of other substances that can be safely used.

        We are talking explicitly about gun regulation because that is inherently related to this recent event. Its the same thing we do when a plane or car crash highlights new issues that need resolution. We need targeted, specific solutions in these moments.

  • ladybugavenger October 6, 2017 at 7:29 am

    “We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.”

    Ronald Reagan

    • bikeandfish October 6, 2017 at 10:07 am

      You do know Reagan’s idea is shared by most who advocate for more gun regulation. We can hold individuals accountable while also recognizing the steep rise in the rate of mass shootings and the scale of casualties. A civil society works to address ills that affect our communities. Gun violence is one such disease. It may be perpetuated by only a handful of individuals but it affects countless citizens at this point. Even Reagan openly supported the infringement of the 2nd Amendment in California because of the actions of a handful of individuals (see Mulford Act). Context and nuance matters.

      We are past the point of easy, singular solutions to our country’s ills but that doesn’t mean we should stop trying to do better.

      • John October 6, 2017 at 11:34 am

        And you still think regulations will stop bullets from crashing through your skull !..You probably also think “Gun Fee Zones” make you safe ! Just let that sink in…Taking guns away from responsible citizens is not the answer. What do you propose we do about the hundreds of millions of firearms already out there? Remember the 2nd Amendment (which can not be changed) stands permanently in place to protect our rights. Did you know that the 2nd Amendment was included to protect Americans from just this discussion. Have a great day, stay in the “GUN FREE ZONES” and continue your illusion of safety!

        • bikeandfish October 6, 2017 at 12:17 pm

          Never said I think gun regulation will “stop bullets from crashing through your skull”. I actually called your question and premise absurd. We call your technique a strawman fallacy.

          Never made a statement about gun free zones, ie another strawman.

          The 2nd Amendment can be repealed or changed but its never likely to happen in our lifetimes. There is a good chance that the age of amending the Constitution is over. Plus, no one is calling for that here, ie another strawman.

          No one is calling for taking away, ie confiscating, guns here, ie another strawman.

          Please do show me a place that the founding fathers designed the 2nd Amendment to “protect Americans from just this discussion”. Odd concept but not shocking given your previous threats.

          Another crazy liberal quote (insert sarcasm) from Justice Antonin Scalia:

          “Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose”

          • John October 6, 2017 at 1:13 pm

            Bike, you are hopelessly dependent on the government to protect you.. and the 2nd amendment is non negotiable. It is just amazing how some believe more laws can protect you from those who do not obey laws, Protect yourself and be vigilant my friend.. it may save your life..depending on the government for your protection can turn out to be the deadliest decision you can ever make..

          • bikeandfish October 6, 2017 at 2:06 pm

            I can understand your statement about not depending on the government but I never said I do. I am interdependent as all of us are to some degree but that is vastly different then dependency. I own 4 weapons and 2 serve home defense well. I clearly support the 2nd Amendment, even the Heller interpretation about personal use beyond a militia. But like most Constitutional scholars throughout history I am also aware that history and jurisprudence of even the most conservative persuasion accept that no right is unlimited.

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