2001 SierraTimes.com

Gun Control Kills
By Ray Thomas 2001 - Published: 01.15.01

Just ask victims of illegal guns. Oh. Sorry, they're dead.

In Denver, Colorado, 41 year old accountant Debra Cameron was going to her car in a downtown garage when she was set upon by a man who beat, stabbed, and shot her to death. Nathan Clarke, a 23 year old college student who heard her screams and rushed to her aid was almost "off-handedly" shot to death by her killer.

Because neither Debra nor Nathan had a gun — but the killer did.

In Killeen, Texas, George Hennard murdered 23 people at a local Luby's Cafeteria. He rammed his pickup truck through the window and began systematically shooting people. He continued shooting people for about ten minutes, reloading five times and even throwing away one gun which jammed during his murderous rampage. Dr. Suzanna Gratia, a patron who survived, but who had to watch while he killed both of her parents, had a gun. But because of Texas law at the time, she had left it in her car and was not able to get to it. Hennard was totally focused on what he was doing and if she had been able to get to her gun, she could have easily shot and killed him without danger to others before he could murder any more of his victims.


  • In Anniston, Alabama, two criminals using stolen guns herded 20 customers and employees of a Shoney's Restaurant into a walk-in cooler. Thomas Glenn Terry, who was legally armed with a .45 semiautomatic, shot and killed one robber and mortally wounded the other.
  • In Salisbury, Maryland, a pair of masked men tried a home-invasion robbery. Terry Wood ran into the bedroom and got his gun. A few minutes later, when one of the gunmen pointed a gun at him, he shot him. The crooks immediately fled, and one of them collapsed and died in a nearby yard.


In the Colorado and Texas cases, press coverage was intense. But in the Alabama and Maryland cases, it was almost nonexistent. Why? Because these cases would not have helped the anti-gun fanatics. The Texas case has been used as a rallying call for gun control ever since it happened, the assumption being that with proper gun control, Hennard wouldn't have been able to kill 23 people. What they ignore is the fact that gun control laws would not have stopped him and did, in fact help him kill those 23 people. If Dr. Gratia had been able to shoot and possibly kill him early on in his rampage, as Wood and Terry did their assailants, many lives could have been saved.


  • In Queens, New York, Timothy Pastuck was called a hero for shooting and wounding a man who was beating another with a baseball bat. Without Pastuck's action, the victim would probably have been killed.
  • In Norcross, Georgia, a former boyfriend burst into the deli where Sharonda McMurray was working and began stabbing her. Dennis Benton was also cut when he jumped the boyfriend. Then Myron Petro got his gun from his car as the assailant left, then returned to renew his attack. Petro shot and killed the attacker when he was, himself attacked.
  • In Oakland, California, an 81-year-old man was attacked in his apartment by a man who followed him in the door. While being savagely beaten, he managed to get his gun and wound his attacker, saving himself from being beaten to death.
  • Floridian John T. Pride was using a pay phone when a 16-year-old bandit tried to rob him at gunpoint. Pride, who is legally armed, shot and killed his assailant, marking the eighth time in 18 months that a criminal had been killed by his intended victim in Central Florida, which proves that Florida's decision to allow its citizens to be armed was a good one.


One of the popular solutions put forward by anti-gun fanatics is the waiting period. This reflects the flawed thinking that says a person will change his mind if he is made to wait.


Unfortunately, the waiting period, far from saving lives, has cost many a person his or her life when they have been threatened by someone who either already has a gun or who can buy it illegally.

Wisconsin woman Bonnie Elmasri had a restraining order against her husband, who had been, according to her, threatening her and her children. She asked a firearms instructor about getting a handgun and was told there was a 48-hour waiting period. Within 24 hours, she was dead, along with her two children. Murdered by her husband, who had no trouble at all obtaining a gun.


  • In Charlotte, North Carolina, Catherine Latta had a similar situation. She had an ex-boyfriend who had robbed and assaulted her several times, and had raped her. But when she was told she would have to wait two weeks for a permit, she didn't just accept her fate. She went out and easily bought an illegal handgun on the street, which she used that very day to shoot and kill the boyfriend when he attacked her outside her house.
  • In Los Angeles, citizens who went to gun stores to arm themselves against rioters were told to come back 15 days later. Those who took that advice were attacked, injured, and killed. Those who didn't, and illegally obtained firearms ran rioters off.


The fact remains that such waiting period laws are, as are most solutions promoted by the anti-gun fanatics, totally ineffective. A waiting period would not have stopped John Hinkley from obtaining the gun he used to seriously wound Jim Brady and President Reagan.


Some of the best research to prove that gun control doesn't work has come from researchers assigned the task of coming up with figures to promote gun control by Jimmy Carter. He intended to use these figures to promote comprehensive federal gun restrictions. Unfortunately for Carter, the research that came out of the grants he gave to sociology professor James D. Wright and his colleagues Peter Rossi and Kathleen Daly not only didn't support gun control -- it did just the opposite. Their research, in the report they produced for the National Institute of Justice in 1982, showed that no persuasive scholarly evidence existed to prove that America's 20,000 gun-control laws had reduced criminal violence in the slightest.

Criminals themselves (in a study in which Wright and Rossi interviewed felony prisoners in 10 state correctional institutions) told them that gun control laws had no effect on their ability to obtain guns. This same survey showed that 56% of the prisoners said that a criminal would not attack a potential victim who was known to be armed. Criminals in states with higher civilian gun-ownership worried most about armed victims.


Criminals faced with the possibility of an armed victim will go on to an easier mark. This by their own words.

According to David B. Koppel, in a 1993 article for Policy Review, "Since criminals can never be entirely sure which burglary targets may or may not contain a homeowner with a gun, or which potential robbery or rape victims may be carrying a concealed firearm, the ownership of firearms by half of American households provides a general deterrent to crime that benefits the entire population."

I experienced this myself one dark night when I stopped at an outdoor phone booth to make a call and was approached by two men I am now convinced were out to rob me, But when I made a motion that looked like I was reaching for a gun, one said: "Don't shoot me, man," and they quickly left.


The evidence is in, from the liberals' own people. Gun control kills innocent people by giving the bad guys a steady supply of unarmed victims — and that the more guns there are in the hands of good people, the less likely they are to be robbed, maimed, and killed by the cowards who stalk only the easiest targets. Don't keep buying the anti-gun fanatics' lies. Learn the real facts and act accordingly. The blood of all the people killed by thugs with their illegal guns because they had no means to defend themselves is on the hands of the "anti-gun freaks."


The Founding Fathers of this country clearly wrote the very simple words: "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." The people! These simple people had no way of knowing that the government was to later form "official" State Guards and call them "militias." To them, the militia was "all the people." Richard Henry Lee said, in fact: "A militia, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves and include all men capable of bearing arms To preserve liberty it is essential that the whole body of the people always posses arms."

This does not mean that only those who are controlled by the government through membership in a State Militia are allowed to keep and bear arms. It means that all the people must do so.

  • Thomas Jefferson said: "No free man shall ever be barred the use of arms."
  • Samuel Adams said: "The Constitution shall never be construed to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms."
  • George Mason said: "I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effective way to enslave them." And our current government knows that.

What could be more clear than that?


In fact, one of the very first times the judiciary took note of the question (before the courts were politicized), even while some of the framers of the Constitution were still alive in 1846, it not only agreed, it reinforced it in a very strong manner. As part of the judgement in the Nunn v. State case, the Georgia Supreme Court said in its 1846 decision, this: "The right of the whole people, old and young, men, women and boys, and not militia only, to keep and bear arms of every description and not such merely used by the militia, shall not be infringed, curtailed, or broken upon, in the smallest degree."

Chief Judge Joseph Henry Lumpkin, who wrote this landmark (for us) decision, was a contemporary of some of the Constitution's framers. He lived at a time when, if arms were to be reserved for government agents only, it would have been an easy point of law for him to reaffirm. But he didn't. He in fact, reaffirmed what the framers of the Constitution really meant when they mentioned the militia. He lived during the time that would have allowed him to know the exact meaning and intent of the Second Amendment as written. And this is reflected in his decision in the Nunn v. State case.

"The Whole People." Everybody. Man, woman and child cannot be disarmed by law.


So why don't the anti-gun fanatics understand this? It has been pointed out to them often enough. The answer is simple enough: They don't want to understand it. To stop pretending to be unable to define what was meant by militia would be to undermine their entire program.


One of the things that must be done if a socialist dictatorship (or any other kind) is to be created is to disarm the people so they can't fight back. Make no mistake — that's what the power seekers in our government are after. And they were well on the way to attaining that goal before the people began to assert their power in the 1994 elections. Their inroads will continue to be reversed as the real facts continue to filter out by way of our new ability to by-pass their captive media through talk radio and the Internet.


Recent gains in the number of states making laws allowing more and more law-abiding people to legally carry guns has not created the wild west atmosphere predicted by the anti-gun fanatics. Even signs posted on the front doors of Blockbuster Video stores have not stopped the criminals, whose whole life is dedicated to breaking the law, from entering, and even robbing them. (Did they really think such a sign would keep the bad guys out? What it really does is tell the bad guys there are no guns there while keeping out the good guys who might keep them from being robbed. It forces them to take their business elsewhere, to the financial detriment of the Blockbuster Stores.


The tendency toward legalizing the concealment of weapons for law-abiding citizens has become a trend. The (liberal) hated NRA has worked with gun owners in ten states recently to pass laws that restore our right to carry a concealed firearm for our own protection. At this time, several other states have such laws now in their legislatures and many will pass. This will, according to Wayne LaPierre, Executive Vice President of the NRA, ensure that every law-abiding American citizen has, if he or she chooses, an effective means of self-defense when violent criminals come stalking.


A few years ago, liberals were whining about the gun-owner's contention that the answer was jailing criminals, and making sure they serve most of the time they're given. Now they're crying because it was tried, and it worked. Crime is down in every place it has been tried, and is predictably up in places where it has not. This has proven conclusively that criminals who are kept behind bars for a longer time cannot prey on the citizenry — at least not while in jail. According to LaPierre, Incarceration punishes the guilty, provides retribution and serves as an example to other would-be criminals who might be tempted to test their own violent notions. Best of all, as long as they're in prison, they can't prey on anyone but their fellow prisoners.

Another factor in this is the very fact that violent crime is beginning to rise again as a bunch of criminals are let out of prison. Some having finished their terms, and others let out to make room for the victims of the drug culture, the users. If we keep putting them back inside as they commit new crimes, maybe we can keep them under control.


When my brother Bob went into an Indianapolis Blockbuster store that had a sign out front saying: "NO FIREARMS ALLOWED," he asked the clerk about people like him, who are legally armed, and who might even be able to help if a criminal attempted to rob them. He was asked to leave if he was armed. He attempted to reason with the clerk, who asked him: "What are you going to do, shoot me?" Stupid, stupid. How stupid it is for people to hold such views and be unable to listen to reason. Ignorance can be cured by an infusion of knowledge. Stupidity cannot.


Now let's talk about registration of guns. Will the necessity to register a gun on its purchase keep guns out of the hands of criminals? In California, and in Japan, where some of the hardest anti-gun laws are in place, it is disgustingly easy for a criminal, or anyone else, for that matter, to obtain as many guns as he or she wants — and guns illegally obtained are never registered. Laws requiring registration of guns are just as unenforceable as those laws that are to keep them out of the hands of criminals.


One of the deadly failings in the thinking of all anti-gun fanatics (and what kills lots of people) is their inability to understand that criminals don't obey laws. Sure. Make laws that felons cannot carry a gun, Make the use of a gun in any crime add lots more time to their sentence. Make laws to force felons to register any firearms they purchase, (knowing these laws won't be obeyed since it's illegal for a felon to even have a gun) so we can put them away for a longer time, just because they're carrying. Use it as a tool to make the hurt harder for criminals you know won't obey the law anyway. But limit these laws to proven criminals.


Let us keep our constitutional right to keep and bear arms so that we may, in the absence of police personnel (who usually only get there long after the crime has been committed anyway,) protect ourselves and thereby put the fear of the armed citizen into the bad guys. There's nothing better to make a criminal think twice than to be afraid his victim will be armed and be able to kill him, instead of the other way around.

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16 jan 2001