How many more?
There’s no rationale for this sort of behavior…
Less than two months after Charlotte police shot and killed an unarmed man who was trying to find help after having a car accident, a woman is dead in Michigan under similar circumstances, shot in the head while reportedly searching for assistance late Friday night.
Renisha McBride, a 19-year-old from Detroit, is presumed to have been asking for help when she knocked on the door of a Dearborn Heights home at 2:30 A.M. on Saturday. McBride’s family says McBride had been in a car accident and her cellphone was dead. Rather than offering shelter to McBride, however, the homeowner came out and shot her in the head with a shotgun. The buckshot entered McBride’s head from the back, according to statements from her aunt, as the girl had already turned to walk or run away from the home. Police reports say the teenager was found dead on the home’s front porch.
While the initial stories around McBride’s death dubbed it a “possible case of self-defense gone wrong,” today police sent a request to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office asking for charges to be filed against the unnamed resident who shot McBride.
“He shot her in the head … for what? For knocking on his door,” McBride’s aunt told the Detroit News. “If he felt scared or threatened, he should have called 911.”
Michigan’s self-defense act, which bears a resemblance to Florida’s infamous stand-your-ground law, says that an individual “may use deadly force against another individual anywhere he or she has the legal right to be with no duty to retreat” as long as that person “honestly and reasonably” believes deadly force is necessary to prevent imminent death, great bodily harm, or sexual assault.
While efforts at gun control are still being fought, children’s advocates are urging parents and communities to take their own steps to protect kids.
He didn’t know the gun was loaded.
The 14-year-old Massachusetts boy had recently found his mother’s handgun, which she kept hidden under her mattress for protection.
“Promise me you’ll never touch it,” his mother, a single mom, had asked him.
But the lure of the gun was irresistible. He decided to show it off to his neighbor, 12-year-old Brian Crowell.
“He was going, ‘Click, click, click,’” pretending to shoot the gun, says Brian’s mother, Ann Marie Crowell, who spoke to the child and his mother after the incident. “But there was one last bullet. It went into Brian’s neck.”
And just like that, Crowell’s son was gone.
Nearly 800 children under 14 were killed in gun accidents from 1999 to 2010, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nearly one in five injury-related deaths in children and adolescents involve firearms.
Although mass shootings get more attention, children are far more likely to be killed at home.
Through homicide, suicide and accidents, guns cause twice as many deaths in young people as cancer, five times as many as heart disease and 15 times as many as infections, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
More on the shooting of a two-year old child by her five-year old brother from Piperni…
America’s gun culture takes another life.
Authorities in southern Kentucky say a 2-year-old girl has been accidentally shot and killed by her 5-year-old brother, who was playing with a .22-caliber rifle he received as a gift.
…the boy received the rifle made for youths last year and is used to shooting it. He said the gun was kept in a corner and the family didn’t realize a shell was left inside it.
It’s difficult to say anything meaningful any longer that adds to the conversation on guns. It’s all been said a thousand times…but I’ll say this anyway. Yes, there are no gun laws that one could put in place that would prevent parents from acting irresponsibly. No amount of legislation can overcome stupidity. Got it.
But is there not something seriously wrong with a gun culture where this statement,
“In rural southern Kentucky, far removed from the national debate over gun control, where some children get their first guns even before they start first grade.“
…is true? Under what set of rules is it acceptable to place in the hands of a 4-year-old a weapon that could blow off another person’s head with a twitch of a finger?
For anyone who doesn’t find that argument convincing, just know that another 86 Americans will be killed by guns today – 30 by murder, 53 by suicide, 2 accidentally and 1 by police intervention. Add to that the 86 Americans who were killed by guns yesterday…and the 86 who will be killed by guns tomorrow…and the day after that, and the day after that, and the day after that…
For a little perspective on the matter, you might recall that in 2010, drop-side cribs were outlawed because over the previous 10 years, an average of 3 children a year were killed by moving side rails in cribs. Three deaths a year was enough to move the government to act. Fortunately, there was no powerful crib lobby in Washington pushing to have drop-side cribs left in place because, “cribs don’t kill babies, people do.” Also, there was no 240-year-old constitutional amendment stating that, “A well regulated Baby’s Room, being necessary to the freedoms of a Happy Family, the right of the people to purchase drop-side cribs, shall not be infringed.”
There was none of that. There was only data that 3 children a year were dying and something could be done to stop it.
We know that 58 children, including 2, 3, 4 and 5-year-olds, have been killed since the Newtown school shooting…and yet, not a damn thing is being done to stop it or to attempt to reduce the number of preventable deaths. Nothing.
The sad part about this is that it won’t phase gun advocates one iota…
On Wednesday, a five-year-old Kentucky boy accidentally shot and killed his two-year-old sister with a gun he’d been given as a birthday present. The weapon, a small rifle, wasmanufactured specifically for children’s use.
The boy’s weapon was a “My First Rifle” .22-caliber gun from Keystone Sporting Arms’ youth branch, Crickett. Crickett’s website markets itself “especially for youth shooters.” The firearms come in several neon colors, and the website even has a “kids corner” featuring pictures of small children with guns:
Crickett does not manufacture bullets. The company offers books for “Grades 2-3 and up,” and says their guns are “ideally sized for children four to ten years old.”
The militarization of children has been tragically spotlighted in the aftermath of the horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut last December. Since then, the country has paid heart-sickening attention to the myriad accidental shootings that have taken place around the country, and the growth of a market of bulletproof children’s clothing.
In one week alone last month, four people were shot by toddlers.
Our elected lawmakers are scared to death of the NRA, so sadly, this sort of thing will be happening ad infinitum…
Five people were killed in a shooting at an apartment complex near Seattle late on Sunday, including a suspect who was shot by officers, police said.
Officers were called to a shooting in progress at around 9:30 p.m. local time (12:30 a.m. ET) emergency call from the complex in Federal Way, which is between Seattle and Tacoma, police spokeswoman Cathy Schrock said.
Gunshots were still being heard when officers arrived at the complex, she said.
“As officers assessed the scene two males could be seen in the parking lot injured,” Schrock said in a statement. “An officer attempted to rescue the men, and as the (police officer) approached, one of the males on the ground reached for a weapon.”
This led to police officers firing on the suspect. Three men were confirmed dead in the parking lot, and a woman and another man were found dead in a nearby apartment, police said.
No officers were injured in the incident.
While there was no word on what caused the gunfire, police said they did not think another shooter was on the loose.
Sometimes, you just have to look at the raw numbers to understand the severity of a problem.
In the United States:
There were 12,664 murders in 2011. Of those murders, 8,583 were committed by firearms. That’s 68% of the total.
Of the 8,583 firearms murders in 2011, 6,220 were committed by handguns, while only 679 were committed by rifles or shotguns.
In comparison, 1,694 murders were committed by knives or other cutting instruments, and 496 using bare hands.
The national firearm murder rate was 2.75 per 100,000
The states with the highest firearm murder rate (2011, per 100,000):
Louisiana – 10.16
Mississippi – 7.46
South Carolina – 5.41
Michigan – 5.06
Maryland – 4.70
Missouri – 4.64
Arkansas – 4.39
New York – 4.12
Pennsylvania – 3.97
Georgia – 3.93
Tennessee – 3.92
North Carolina – 3.87
Oklahoma – 3.64
Ohio – 3.54
Arizona – 3.53
There were 122,300 armed robberies committed with a firearm in 2011. The total number of armed robberies using knives or other weapons was 48,862. The firearm robbery rate was 39.25 per 100,000.
There were 136,371 aggravated assaults using firearms in 2011.
(Source for everything above.)
There were 36,909 suicides in the United States in 2009. Of those, 18,735 (50.7%) were committed using a firearm. (Source)
How we compare:
Compare our overall homicide rate (using guns and anything else) with other countries, starting with the top 5:
Mexico – 18.1 (per 100,000)
Estonia – 5.6
United States – 5.0
Chile – 3.7
Turkey – 3.3
Here are a few other countries, included for comparison:
Israel – 2.1
Canada – 1.8
France – 1.4
Poland – 1.3
Northern Ireland – 1.2
Australia – 1.2
England and Wales – 1.1
Scotland – 1.6
Italy – 1.0
Sweden – 1.0
Germany – 0.8 (Source)
Compare the number of firearm murders in the United States with the latest data from other countries:
South Africa – 31,918
Colombia – 21, 898
Thailand – 20,032
United States – 8,583
Philippines – 7,708
Mexico – 2,606
Slovakia – 2,356
El Salvador = 1,441
The counties above were the only countries reporting more than 1,000 firearm deaths in a single year. What about Europe, Australia and Canada? Here are some samples:
Germany – 269
Czech Republic – 181
Ukraine – 173
Canada – 144
Poland – 111
Spain – 97
Switzerland – 68
Australia – 59
Sweden – 58
Austria – 25
United Kingdom – 14
Compare our rate of firearm ownership with select other countries:
United States – 88.8 guns per 100 people
Yemen – 54.8 (second-highest in the world)
Switzerland – 45.7
Sweden – 31.6
France – 31.2
Canada – 30.8
Austria – 30.4
Germany – 30.3
Czech Republic – 16.3
Australia – 15.0
Spain – 10.4
Ukraine – 6.6
Poland – 1.3 (Source)
Only the United States and Yemen consider gun ownership a right, and Yemen is beginning to enact stricter gun control measures.
Though the United States has 4.5% of the world population, accounts for 40% of its civilian firearms.
The numbers speak for themselves. We have a problem in this country, and if you can’t see it, you’re blind. We have more guns than anyone else, but that’s not the problem. Proportionally peaking, Canada and most of Europe have a significant number of guns, yet nowhere near the number of gun homicides and deaths experienced annually in the United States. How do you explain three times the number of guns, but 40-100 times the number of gun deaths?
The difference seems to be that other countries seem to have a handle on their guns, and we do not.
If so many people were dying from any other consumer product, we’d demand answers. But when it comes to guns, we treat them as a sacred cow. The numbers don’t lie; our firearm statistics are more in line with third world dictatorships than a developed country. No other developed country is even close to us on this. Why aren’t we fixing it?
Every year, thousands of domestic abusers fall through the cracks of our current background check system, often with tragic consequences for the women they terrorize. The “gun show loophole,” which the Senate is considering closing as part of a gun reform package, allows violent individuals who are banned from buying or owning a gun to easily skip background checks through private sales.
Technically, under the Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban, people who have committed a misdemeanor of domestic violence or are the subject of a restraining order are prohibited from buying or owning a gun. Yet it is all too easy for convicted abusers looking to punish or kill their targets to get their hands on weapons. Over 90 percent of female homicide victims are killed by someone they know, and 76 percent of these victims were stalked before their deaths. Guns are the most common weapon used in these murders.
Moreover, federal gun bans are so narrowly defined that many abusers can pass a background check to buy guns legally. For instance, current federal law does not disqualify convicted stalkers from buying guns. Federal domestic abuse protections also do not extend to people who were not married, related to, cohabitated, or had a child with their abuser. A new billintroduced by Rep. Lois Capps (D-CA) would extend the gun ban to people who abused a dating partner, a relatively common occurrence.
Access to guns all but ensures that an abusive situation turns fatal. Domestic abusers who have access to firearms are over 7 times more likely to kill their partners. From 2009 to 2012, 40 percent of mass shootings started with the shooter targeting his girlfriend, wife or ex-wife. Meanwhile, in states that require a background check for private handgun sales, 38 percent fewer women are shot to death by their intimate partners.
Behind these statistics are countless women the law failed to protect from a clear threat. Below is a sample of their stories:
Daniel took out a restraining order against her husband after three years of abuse. The restraining order should have prevented her husband, Radcliffe Haughton, from buying a gun. Regardless, Haughton was able to skip a background check by buying a gun on the internet, which he used to shoot 7 people the very next day. He murdered Zina and two of her coworkers before shooting himself. In a new ad for Mayors Against Illegal Guns, Zina’s brother, Elvin Daniel, makes an emotional plea for stricter background checks that could have kept Haughton from buying that gun.
Jitka Vesel was murdered by her ex-boyfriend, Demetry Smirnov, outside her office on April 13, 2011. Smirnov, as a Canadian citizen, should not have been able to buy a gun, yet purchased a handgun from a private dealer via a gun exchange website, Armslist.com. Jitka’s brother and best friend have sued the website for facilitating illegal gun sales.
Johanna Justin-Jinich, a student at Wesleyan University, met Stephen Morgan at an NYU summer program. Morgan, a fervent anti-Semite, began stalking and harassing Johanna, who was Jewish. A few months after she filed a harassment complaint with the police, Morgan shot Johanna seven times at the bookstore where she worked. Morgan did not have a permit for the gun he used.
Stock filed a protective order against her ex-boyfriend, Jeffrey Calvert, just five days before she was found murdered in her home. Calvert had already been convicted of stalking another woman in 1995. Despite the prior conviction and the protective order that should have compelled him to give up his guns, Calvert was able to buy the two guns, a stun gun, and ammunition that he used to kill his ex-girlfriend and himself.
Yvonne Flores was stalked by her neighbor, Anthony Medina, for nearly two years before he was arrested. Medina would follow Yvonne and her husband everywhere, prompting her to get a temporary restraining order against him. Two weeks after Medina made bail, he waited in Yvonne’s driveway and shot her twice as she was returning from the store. Medina then killed himself.
The Senate will soon debate universal background checks as part of a gun reform package, which would require all private sales to use background checks. However, Capp’s bill to tighten restrictions on gun ownership by convicted abusers within the existing system will not be part of the final package. Both measures will face staunch Republican opposition. Repeating aconspiracy theory from the National Rifle Association, many Republicans claim the background check system could lead to a national gun registry that the government could potentially use to confiscate guns and establish a dictatorship. Should these measures die because of this baseless hypothesis, millions of women will continue to live in fear of dying at the hands of their abusers.
The POTUS made some good points in his speech…
President Barack Obama pressed Congress on Thursday not to forget the heartbreak of the Newtown elementary school massacre and “get squishy” on tightened gun laws, though some lawmakers in his own Democratic Party remain a tough sell on an approaching Senate vote to expand purchasers’ background checks.
“Shame on us if we’ve forgotten,” Obama said at the White House, standing amid 21 mothers who have lost children to shootings. “I haven’t forgotten those kids.”
More than three months after 20 first-graders and six staffers were killed in Newtown, Conn., Obama urged the nation to pressure lawmakers to back what he called the best chance in over a decade to tame firearms violence.
At the same time, gun control groups were staging a “Day to Demand Action” with more than 100 rallies and other events planned from Connecticut to California. This was on top of a $12 million TV ad campaign financed by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg that has been pressuring senators in 13 states to tighten background-check rules.
But if political momentum was building after the nightmarish December shootings, it has flagged as the Senate prepares to debate gun restrictions next month. Thanks to widespread Republican resistance and a wariness by moderate Democrats from Southern and Western states – including six who are facing re-election next year – a proposed assault weapons ban seems doomed and efforts to broaden background checks and bar high capacity ammunition magazines are in question.
In one statement that typifies moderate Democrats’ caution, spokesman Kevin Hall said Virginia Sen. Mark Warner is “still holding conversations with Virginia stakeholders and sorting through issues on background checks” and proposals on assault weapons and magazines.