How anyone could commit mass killings of innocents, especially children, is beyond comprehension.

Such monstrous acts bring immediate cries to prevent future carnage. In our moments of passion over these crimes, we must get beyond politically correct “solutions” which give us warm feelings while doing nothing to prevent mass killings.

With that in mind, consider the fact that the two worst mass killings at schools in the U.S. did not involve any guns whatsoever. In Michigan, 45 people were killed by destroying school facilities with dynamite; and in Illinois, fire was the weapon resulting in the deaths of 92 students and three nuns.

Most modern day perpetrators of mass school shootings and similar mass killings were either taking psychotropic drugs or had recently stopped taking psychotropic drugs.

Such drugs are commonly prescribed for mental health issues, and they have a well-demonstrated history of side-effects including mania, confusion, hostility, psychosis, hallucinations, lack of emotion, and depersonalization.

The Gun Free Zone Act was enacted in 1996. Based upon results, this legislation made the situation worse by making targets of schools and other “gun free” zones.

Between 1966 and 1996, we had eight mass shootings with 134 victims killed or wounded resulting in 4.3 victims per year. Between 1996 and 2012, we had 62 shootings and 367 victims or 23 victims per year - a five-fold increase.

All of these mass killings occurred in “gun free” zones.

During the 1970s, the Carter administration conducted scientific study through a major gun control research grant to the University of Massachusetts.

After four years of critical study, the results were published in 1981. They found that gun control laws do not reduce crime.

Another study by John Lott and William Landes of data from 1976 to 1995 found that the only factor consistently reducing multiple mass public shootings was the passage of laws allowing concealed carry of handguns.

Adopting such laws reduced mass homicides by 84 percent, related deaths by 90 percent, and related injuries by 82.5 percent.

Multiple studies have shown that guns are used vastly more often to protect people from crimes than guns are used to commit crimes.

Based on those studies, Americans use guns approximately one to 2.5 million times each year to defend themselves from violent crime including about 200,000 women protecting themselves from sexual crimes or abuse.

(38) comments

Rosanna
Rosanna

During the time period of 1996 to 2012 that saw a five fold increase in shootings, the use of psycotropic drugs increased to the point that now millions of dollars are spent advertising them on TV.

For a list of some of these drugs and links to their use and side effects please go to the following link;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_psychotropic_medications

Many of these drugs are supposed to help us feel better, study better or sleep better, but they may also be causing a lot of our problems.

luke

The elderly take more psychoactive medication than any other group, while also being more likely to own a weapon. Why are so few mass shootings committed by them?

Rosanna
Rosanna

True, but there are also psychoactive drugs such as Ritalin and Concerta used to treat ADD/ADHD that are not commonly found in Nursing Homes but are commonly used to treat our youth. Side effects of both of those drugs can include anger, depression, psychosis and suicidal tendencies.

luke

Xanax is rarely prescribed to youth but often to adults and the elderly. It is much more popular, more often abused, and is MUCH more often linked to depressive side effects than Methylphenidate (sold as Ritalin/Concerta).

If medication were the problem, the link would be very clear. However, in most mass shootings and suicides, the perpetrator had been depressed before being prescibed medication

Rosanna
Rosanna

"However, in most mass shootings and suicides, the perpetrator had been depressed before being prescibed medication"

Yes, and if the medication is the problem, the shootings and suicides would happen AFTER the individual started taking the drug, not BEFORE.

Bps
Bps

Here's some more:

4,800 SSRi related incidents all over the world:
http://ssristories.com/index.php

School Shooters and Psych Meds
http://tinyurl.com/bnxeqj6

Prescription Drugs Associated with Reports of Violence Towards Others
http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0015337

SSRIs murders world wide:
http://tinyurl.com/bscux3v

luke

"Multiple studies have shown that guns are used vastly more often to protect people from crimes than guns are used to commit crimes."

Nope.

"Another study by John Lott and William Landes"

John Lott has publicly admitted to creating a false identity to positively review his own work. The results of the study have never been reliably replicated.

Bps
Bps

3 times we’ve been through this & you disregard all contradictory evidence

... even YOUR OWN reference to the Hemenway study:

DGU 6 - 10 More Freq than 8,772 All Guns Homicides
DGU 154 - 256 More Freq than 358 W/Rifles Homicides
(DGU = defensive gun usage)

...here’s the JG-TC link :

http://tinyurl.com/b2x6rn6
12/22/2012 5:38 pm

“We want the facts to fit the preconceptions. When they don't it is easier to ignore the facts than to change the preconceptions.” - Jessamyn West

tds-t-lol

gringa

"Nope"?

You're quoting your opinion, right? Or, did you just forget to add the source document?

And in a later post, you state "The elderly take more psychoactive medication than any other group, while also being more likely to own a weapon. Why are so few mass shootings committed by them?"

You go on to reference Rx drugs, but fail to mention street drugs directly linked to mental illness primarily in the young.

Finally, the "elderly are more likely to own weapons"? Prove it.

sheepdog
sheepdog

"Prove it."

Now THAT'S funny! luke won't even debate the gun control issue. Why would he want to "prove" anything?

shawnlb

Seems medication use is another symptom to a underlying issue. Perhaps acts like corporate America stealing our future. A Stalin approach to our rights is treating the symptoms not addressing the problem. The first six amendments were tacked on to the original draft to protect us. The second amendment is very clear. It has nothing to do with hunting.
"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."

Peggy's_Soapbox

Statistics might show that 100% of perpetrators of mass gun murders are young males with guns.I"m not sure how all the bloggers would approach that statistic and what they might propose to alleviate it.There are lots of sets of 'statistics' out there, some legit, some bogus, enough to be adapted to anyone's argument.One of the President's proposals is to lift the ban on federally funded research on gun violence.Did you know there is such a ban, and that it resulted from NRA pressure on Congress?

Rosanna
Rosanna

Peggy, the ban only applied to the Center For Disease Control and did not apply to other Federal Agencies, such as the DOJ, FBI, ATF, FDA, FEMA, HUD, SS or even Congress. What the ban did not include was the CDC researching the possible mental health issues, drugs side effects and drug interactions that may be causing these problems.

Did the CDC do that research? It would be more in the realm of their expertise.

sheepdog
sheepdog

"Statistics MIGHT show that 100% of ....."

And you "might" join the NRA.

shawnlb

Switzerland. Use that for a statistic on gun ownership.

legal citizen

The US governmental system does not have much in common w/Swiss. That's like comparing communism w/capitalism.
Swiss gun stats irrelevant to the US.

shawnlb

Looking at gun ownership in modern societies would be a legitimate study. Looking at communism (A governing system) and capitalism (A financial system) together not so much.

legal citizen

Yes. Could be a legit study. However, you have different cultures, values, and demographics in Swissland compared to the US.. Economic and political systems entirely polar, which effects peoples attitudes.
Isn't communism a financial system too? Or is that the 'socialism' idea?

Rosanna
Rosanna

Actually, Switzerland is a good country to consider. It has the third highest rate of gun ownership in the world and a low murder by gun rate.

If world stats could be adjusted to account for gang and organized criminal activity, I am sure that it would show that they are the cause of the majority of the murders. And if we further account for mental health issues, I am sure that we will have identified the two biggest problems we are facing. Neither of which is what the gun looks like.

luke

Your comparing the US to one of the best-educated, wealthiest countries in the world. Guns probably don't have a lot to do with their low crime rate.

I'd love the US to adopt Switzerland's gun policy though. They have very strict concealed/open carry laws, universal background checks, require licensing/training, limit the types of ammunition available, require records of ammunition/gun purchase, etc.

Does this mean you agree with Swiss gun control laws?

Rosanna
Rosanna

You avoided the point that I was making. The problem is not caused by the average law abiding citizen or the looks of the gun. The problem is caused by gangs, organized crime and mental health issues. Do you have any insights into how Switzerland handles those issues?

luke

I think you avoided the point. I like Switzerland's policies on most issues. They have universal healthcare, high taxes, a great public school system, gun control etc.

If we both agree that Switzerland's policies work, why don't you support them?

Rosanna
Rosanna

"If we both agree that Switzerland's policies work, why don't you support them?"


You have yet to explain to us what the policies are in Switzerland regarding gangs, organized crime and mental health.

Just because you agree with me that Switzerland has a high rate of gun ownership (3rd highest in the world) and a low murder rate, doesn't mean that I agree with you on mental health policies and gun laws that I'm unfamiliar with. Unlike some, I like to read the bill before I vote on it.

sheepdog
sheepdog

"I think you avoided the point"

Now THAT'S rich.
I do believe you've just reinforced what I've been saying for years. It's a
"cultural thing" not a "gun thing". Did you happen to see Tony Bennett's recent rant about gun control?

BTW, I have no beef with background checks, licensing/training for concealed carry. Don't we already record gun purchases? What do you mean by "limit the types of ammunition available"?

"YOUR comparing the US to one of the best-educated...."
Harbob?

luke

Switzerland has universal healthcare (implemented similarly to ObamaCare) that covers mental health treatment. Switzerland doesn't have a gang problem because gangs are a symptom of poverty.

Time Lord
Time Lord

"Switzerland doesn't have a gang problem because gangs are a symptom of poverty."


So you'r saying that their stats wouldn't apply to our situation.

Time Lord
Time Lord

I was encouraged when I heard the President say that everything was on the table on this issue. I guess that shows how gullible I am. One side only wants to talk about the symptoms of the madness, not the underlying causes. But I suppose that if we did talk about the underlying causes, it would show just how bad our Mental Health System is in this country.

Just think of how many illnesses we could prevent if we outlawed fevers.

sheepdog
sheepdog

luke said: "John Lott has publicly admitted to creating a false identity to positively review his own work. The results of the study have never been reliably replicated"

I know that it's asking a lot...but could you provide us with a source?

luke

This is the original story. He later responded and apologized for it. Looks like both Lott and Time Lord like to create personas.

http://reason.com/archives/2003/05/01/the-mystery-of-mary-rosh

sheepdog
sheepdog

If Mr. Sanchez put it on the internet, it must be true. Bonjour

heavyweight

Sheep Dog- I did see Tony's comment on gun control. It seemed that his comment started out as pro gun control. But, when he started in about Hitler and the Nazis, he made the case against gun control. Imagine that! A contradictory Liberal. Reminded me of Uncle Joe.

Rosanna
Rosanna

Sheepdog, at some point, I have to wonder if some are truly clue-less about the gun laws that we already have or are they pretending to be clue-less hoping that it will steer the conversation away from the gang and mental health problems our country has.

And BTW, I believe that training should be mandatory before one buys a gun. And I don't believe that would violate the 2nd Amendment.

sheepdog
sheepdog

To purchase, NO! To carry concealed, Yes.
If they want to keep it in their "hearth and home" that's not endangering anyone but themselves or someone in the house. When they carry it out on the streets then they're having contact with the public. Then it becomes a public safety issue.

I wonder about them sometimes as well. But, when they refuse to debate the issue, I'm inclined to believe that they are pretending. What other conclusion could one come to?
What say Hary or luke?

Rosanna
Rosanna

On that point we will have to disagree. While I believe it is our Right, with any Right comes responsibility and we are the ones responsible for being safe. I grew up in a home that didn't have firearms and before my training I had never held one before. So as you can imagine, my learning curve was very steep but it was centered around being safe.

And BTW, can the walls and windows in your house stop a 10mm?

sheepdog
sheepdog

"...can the walls and windows in your house stop a 10mm?

uh...no.
Haven't heard from Hary for a while. Must be vacationing in the C'rib again.

Rosanna
Rosanna

"uh...no."


Wouldn't that make the neighbors of an untrained person protecting "hearth and home" down range?

sheepdog
sheepdog

"down range?"

neighbors.. as in across the hall in an apartment complex? Yes.
neighbors...as in down the street? In a "literal" sense, I suppose.

Rosanna
Rosanna

Maybe I'm just spoiled, but I like to think that my neighbors know what they are doing. We insist on people being trained before they are allowed to drive and we do that in our schools. We could teach a lot about gun safety in the schools without even having a gun there, but we don't.

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