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Let’s Holster Incendiary Rhetoric and Get Flagler Started on Meaningful Gun Talk

| January 18, 2013

A memorial for the children of Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. (Andrew Gardecki)

A memorial for the children of Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. (Andrew Gardecki)

By Milissa Holland

December 14, 2012, will be one of those days when each of us will remember exactly what we were doing on hearing the news that we lost 28 people in the Newtown school massacre. I was driving with my daughter, listening to the radio. “Silent Night” came over the airwaves and spoke of this tragedy.  We looked at each other with confusion and our eyes began to fill with tears.

milissa-holland-sigWhat happened next was what normally happens after these almost-routine mass shootings. Whether out of a sense of helplessness or fear or just trying to wrap our minds around the tragedy, we’ve had literally days and thousands of hours of discussions about gun control, but little else.  We have become such a reactive society rather than a proactive one that you have to wonder what, if anything, will come out of this divisive issue.

Nevertheless it’s a dialogue we need to have. So starting Friday, I will begin a series of conversations on my radio program on WNZF to see where we are on this issue as a community.  My guests throughout the coming weeks will include law enforcement and education officials, state lawmakers and national policy makers.

What has bothered me about the rhetoric in the last few weeks is the predictable nature of the debate, the extremists on both sides making blanket and incendiary statements. They seem intent to provoke greater anger over the situation rather than shed light on it.  You have former New York City mayoral candidate Mark Green calling for gun owners to be registered in a public database similar to that of sex offenders. How anyone can make a statement like that is beyond me.  How that would stop anyone from going on a killing spree is not clear to me.

We cannot fail to mention Ann Coulter’s support of the National Rifle Association’s push to place armed guards in our schools.  I can only imagine what would happen to education funding when parents decide to homeschool their children rather than have them walk around all day alongside guards with weapons strapped to their bodies. Rambo comes to mind.

I have read several extreme comments that leave me scratching my head wondering when will we let go of this rhetorical OK Corral standoff and have a real conversation. Ironically, a calm, reasonable suggestion came from an 8-year-old named Coleman Glasser, who had to write an essay on one thing he could change in the world. His proposal: “No more assault rifles.” (He makes an exception for soldiers.) His essay was featured in the Huffington Post.

In the end Coleman may get his wish, if Vice President Joe Biden has anything to do with it. Biden supports reinstituting the assault rifle ban passed in 1994 as part of a crime bill.  The ban expired 10 years later. Its effectiveness is still highly debated. Universal background checks are also expected to be recommended. Currently, background checks are only conducted when a gun is purchased at a retailer. Universal background check would extend to any private sale of a gun, eliminating the gunshow loophole. The Obama administration may also recommend regulating magazine clips, possibly banning high-capacity clips and restricting gun users to a certain amount of ammunition, sparking what some call a “war on ammo.”  Although I don’t believe all these proposals will be adopted, I do believe we will see some sort of legislation.


In an even more unexpected turn of events, ABC News is reporting that almost 3 million background checks were conducted in December alone, a million more than last year during the same time period.  Florida marked the issuing of its 1 millionth concealed weapon permit the same week of the Newtown massacre. The NRA is celebrating a staggering 100,000 new members in just 18 days.

So what is the real debate?  Should we just chalk up this tragedy to kids playing too many violent video games?  There’s no proven connection between the two.  I have been to shooting ranges and have been skeet shooting a few times—and actually did really well at both.  I don’t own a gun but believe in the right of others to do so.  I also believe in the castle doctrine and the right to protect your household.  However, I also support a ban on assault weapons, used in 35 mass shootings between 1982 and 2012.  It should not be that easy for a young man to blow a hole in a locked facility, walk through the hallway and into a classroom and kill 20 children in a matter of minutes.  We should have some assurances that our children can go to school without fear every day.  I understand that nothing is a given in our world. But doing all we can to ensure children’s safety sounds like a reasonable request to me.

Whatever may be the direction of lawmakers in Florida, in other states or in Congress, I want to get the conversation started locally.  Let’s have an open, respectful dialogue.  I would like to think that these children have not died in vain. We owe it to them to create a safer environment. If it takes an emotionally charged discussion to make that happen, then let’s start now.

Milissa Holland, a Flagler County commissioner from 2006 to 2012, is host of Milissa Holland Live on WNZF 1550 AM, Fridays at 10 a.m. Her column will appear here every Wednesday. Reach her by email here, on Facebook or on Twitter. While she’s on the air Friday morning between 10 and 11, call her at 386/206-WNZF (or 206-9693).

Coleman Glasser, the son of ACLU Executive Director Ira Glasser, was asked what one thing he would change in the world, if he could.

Coleman Glasser, the son of ACLU President Ira Glasser, was asked what one thing he would change in the world, if he could.

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34 Responses for “Let’s Holster Incendiary Rhetoric and Get Flagler Started on Meaningful Gun Talk”

  1. Edman says:

    We all need to contact Mica and Rubio to let them know if they use any lame excuses to “follow the insanity of the NRA” they can count on caring citizens to “show them the door” at election time. We can and should be more rational and caring about our society than the gun manufacturer mouthpieces known as the NRA. Pass the word, we are better than that and won’t stand for any more lame excuses!

    • IMO says:

      According to media reports it’s democrat Senators up for re-election in 2014 that are telling Harry Reid to avoid any gun legislation votes in the Senate.

      They are all running away as quickly as they can.

      “Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) told a local television station that he opposed the proposals.

      “While I appreciate the president’s efforts to keep Americans safe, I believe the place to start is to enforce the laws on the books. That being said, I will continue to look for areas of common ground, including funding for law enforcement in schools, implementing tracking systems for the mentally ill and criminals, and addressing violence in the media. Most importantly, I will be talking with my constituents in Arkansas as I vote on these issues in the future,” Pryor said.

      Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) indicated he was hesitant about supporting new legislation.

      “Enforcing the laws we already have on the books is good first step, and it’s clear more needs to be done to address access to mental health care,” he said in a Wednesday statement. “Before passing new laws, we need a thoughtful debate that respects responsible, law-abiding gun owners in Montana instead of a one-size-fits all directives from Washington.”

      Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) said on Tuesday, before the proposals came out, that he didn’t want to see a “one-size-fits-all” approach.

      “We in South Dakota have far fewer problems with guns than they do in New York or New Jersey, and it makes common sense to not have one size fits all,” he said in a Tuesday news conference in South Dakota. “I believe in the Second Amendment, and I’m a hunter myself, but I think something should be done — but what, I don’t know.”

      Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.) was cautious regarding whether or not she supported the proposals, though she said she would look at the proposals with “an open mind.”

      “We need to ensure that there are laws in place to prevent a tragedy like Sandy Hook from ever happening again. First and foremost, that will require a serious commonsense debate in Congress that looks at access to guns, access to mental health care and violent video games,” she said in a statement to The Hill. “While respecting the rights of responsible gun owners, I am committed to working with my Republican and Democratic colleagues toward a comprehensive approach that ensures our communities are safe.

      “As I have said, I will look at any proposal with an open mind, including the President’s proposals to make schools safer and grant law enforcement additional tools to prosecute gun crime,” she continued.

      Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) similarly didn’t take a concrete stance on Obama’s proposals, though she sounded slightly more open to new legislation.

      Read more: http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/277783-vulnerable-senate-democrats-balk-at-obamas-gun-measures#ixzz2IITFeZmv
      Follow us: @thehill on Twitter | TheHill on Facebook

  2. I have two sixth graders at Bunnell Elementary. I have no objections to armed guards,or teachers for that matter, in schools.

  3. Charles says:

    I wonder what wording would be in the letter of the two children who where SAVED by their mother because she was able to DEFEND them against an intruder coming at them in their home two weeks ago. I bet their letter would be a bit different then the above one. And exactly WHAT is an assault weapon ? I don’t believe you really understand what a REAL assault weapon is .

  4. teed off says:

    Could you please list the 35 mass shootings and weapons used.Then list how many people died from all the traffic accidents caused form speed since 1982.Then list all the people who died from Tabasco related deaths.
    I am sorry that sounds a little crazy.Seeing what you are saying 35 mass shootings in 30 years.Tragic they are, them numbers still don’t compare to how many people die from other reasons.

    I do not believe any gun ban will stop a person who is determined to cause a mass killing.I do agree with a solid background check.I also think getting mental heath involved with the back ground check.My thought is if you go to a doctor and need mental heath or a drug to help you cope with life,and you own guns.They need to be confiscated.
    As far as arming teachers with guns I think is a big mistake.I do believe in putting law enforcement or some one trained at the same level.My thought the TSA was made after 9/11 why not come up with school security that is armed and trained.

    I also think all firearms should be secured in gun safe.If a gun is used in a crime because it was not secure the owner should be prosecuted.But I think that is all ready a law.

    There are no easy answers to this problem.But going to this extreme which was done before and had no results is not the answer

  5. downinthelab says:

    Well let’s just run the numbers. How many deaths can be attributed to guns? What about cars? Tobacco? AIDS? Obesity? Poverty? Lack of healthcare?

    Are we going to talk seriously about doing the greatest good for the largest number of people?

    What are we going to do, limit everyone to 10 rounds, 2 cylinders, no smokes and a glass of wine? Close BK, Mickey D’s and of course, Woody’s?

  6. Geezer says:

    I’m a democrat who voted for Barack Obama.
    This gun issue is where we part company, however.

    But:
    I’d like to see universal background checks for every single firearms transaction.
    This includes gun shows and private gun sales. Even if you want to sell your .38 to
    your kind neighbor–it should be transacted by 3rd party FFL holder, who will run a
    background check to see if your neighbor is a felon or a known mentally unbalanced person.
    There will be a fee charged for the FDLE (or national database) check, and for the FFL holder’s time and trouble. This is a reasonable proposition.

    Background checks are peace of mind–if your neighbor (your gun customer) shoots somebody and it’s discovered that he’s mentally ill, or a domestic abuser, or felon-you’re going to be liable for the damages without that 3rd party overseeing the transaction. You don’t want that.

    I’m open to reasonable legislation that doesn’t unfairly penalize current lawful gun owners. I concede that some more scrutiny is needed for future AR15 and AK’s, etc. Just don’t throw the baby away with the bathwater.

    I still like Barack Obama, but am against the lefty democrats extreme prejudice against gun ownership.
    On the flip side I dislike the right wing extremists views on guns.

    Extremists cannot meet halfway. We need a more moderate approach to this issue.
    Otherwise we will go nowhere, while law-abiding citizens and sportsmen watch the price of ammo and guns skyrocket, making the gun dealers the only winners here.

    It costs a fortune to go to the range and shoot at paper these days. That’s a shame.

  7. Paul Medford says:

    Wow, some gun dialogue on the intellectual level for a change. Thank you, Melissa!

    One comment I would like to give, and I’m finding this innacuracy in many articles and opinion pieces, even from the officials in Washington.

    Guns do not have “Clips” They have “Magazines”. Clips are a device used to feed a Magazine. Seems like splitting hairs? Maybe, but words mean things. In the haste to do something, New York forgot to exempt Law Enforcement Officers from the 7 shot maximum. Oops. Those little words, and it’s law. The NY legislators are now “looking into a fix”. Many of them, too, didn’t know a clip from a magazine. If we are to have meaningful dialogue, and meaningful solutions, it would be nice for us all to know what we are talking about.

    Again, kuddos to Melissa for civil tone and a dose of common sense.

  8. Terry says:

    When will politicians ever realize that making things illegal does NOT stop their use? The idea that banning assault weapons, reducing magazine capacities, or even outlawing all gun ownership, will prevent tragedies like these is simply flawed. The only result of such laws is that law-abiding citizens comply: criminals & thugs do not. Just look at all the laws there are now to prevent us from possessing drugs – what’s their success rate?

    Besides, it is not gun ownership per se that is the cause of the problem. If that were true. there would be a LOT more massacres. Millions of responsible gun owners have NOT killed anybody, and in fact have SAVED lives on many occasions in these situations!

    The debate should shift to what causes some people to commit such horrendous acts.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I have a 5 yr old in kindergarten and a 3 yr old about to be in pre-k and I also am not against armed guards, teachers, or admin ( with proper training). We do not need to stop law abiding citizens from owning certain firearms or higher capacity magazines. We need to have tougher punishments for crimes involving firearms, and yes have a background check every time a firearm changes possession. The only thing the presidents proposals is gonna do is restrict myself and many other LEGAL gun owners from protecting my family and house hold. The victims of Sandy Hook will not pass in vain! Something needs to be done, but to the criminals, not everyday law abiding citizens. God bless the victims and family members of Sandy Hook!

  10. Anonymous says:

    [Correction: Some of this commenter's numbers were in error. He had listed at #9 "non-firearm homicide: 16,799." That's impossible, since the CDC lists, in its latest homicide report, all homicides at 16,259, and firearm homicides at 11,078, leaving non-firearm homicides at 5,181. The numbers have been corrected. Other numbers have not been verified. Read with caution. Commenter, please double-check your figures before posting. Thanks.--FL]

    As horrifying as these massacres are, it’s important to keep things in perspective, lest our emotions cloud our reason.

    Here is a list of the leading annual causes of death compiled by the CDC and FBI.

    1.) Tobacco Use – 529,000
    2.) Medical Errors – 195,000
    3.) Unintentional Injuries – 118,021
    4.) Alcohol Abuse – 107,400
    5.) Motor Vehicle Accidents – 34,485
    6.) Unintentional Poisoning – 31,758
    7.) Drug Abuse – 25,500
    8.) Unintentional Falls – 24,792
    9.) All Homicides – 16,259
    10.) Firearm Homicides – 11,978

    More people are murdered with clubs and hammers each year than by rifles, and yet there is no call to restrict these household items. Twice as many die in fistfights each year than by rifles. These are the government’s own crime figures.

    Despite record gun ownership, the latest numbers reveal that violent crime in the United States is actually down across the board. One might deduce that concealed-carry laws have made it difficult for criminals to select victims.

    Guns are used 2.5 millions times each year in self-defense, or 80 times more to save innocent lives than to take them (National Safety Council).

    In the UK, violent crime is actually higher per capita than the US. A person in the UK is twice as likely to be knifed than a person in the US is to be shot (London Telegraph). Now they are trying to ban knives.

    As the Wall Street Journal recently noted, “Strict gun laws in Great Britain and Australia haven’t made their people noticeably safer, nor have they prevented massacres.”

    Switzerland, with its well-armed population and gun culture, does not even measure statistics of gun-related crime because the rate is so low (BBC). With a homicide rate of 2.2 per 100,000, it is regarded as one of the safest places in the world. (travelsplendid.com)

    The history of gun control tells us that state seizure of firearms is habitually used as a precursor to impose a power monopoly of the state. If you think that the Founding Fathers were talking about duck hunting in the Second Amendment, you are misinformed.

  11. ryan says:

    I would also like to see a crackdown on hate groups, such as the Aryan Nation, American National Socialist party, and the skinhead movement, whose rhetoric goes beyond 1st amendment, as well as cracking down on gang violence perpetuated by crips, bloods, and MS 13, who all use guns, and to ensure that media is not gifting these groups with anonymity or looking the other way when it comes to real hate crimes. We also need to see some legislation that punishes people who teach mentally unstable individuals how to load and shoot these weapons, and bring under question the credibility of both politicians and media that refuse to mention any of these things publicly.

  12. PM says:

    Another week is almost over and New York has passed some tough new gun laws. From what I’ve read you can still own a revolver and a single shot rifle or shot gun. No magazines over 7 rounds, even for law enforcement. No rifles with pistol grips. No grandfather clause. Because the laws are confusing and effective immediately most New York gun owners are now criminals. I hope Gov. Cuomo thought about the added prison capacity they will need. Sadly, New York is only the first state that will go into a gun control frenzy passing new laws. I can’t wait to see what new laws Connecticut comes up with.

    Many states are feeding into the recent gun control frenzy like a junkie who hasn’t had a fix in 3 days. When will they realize that a gun, by itself, cannot kill? It takes human intervention to activate a firearm and shoot it. Let’s help the people with mental health issues, but still allow us citizens to properly defend ourselves from nefarious elements.

    This brings me back to those bumper sticker in the 80′s:

    If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.

    Just take a look over at Chicago. No guns allowed, yet it’s citizens are under attack daily and cannot defend themselves. Wait for the police they say.

    Waiting for the police can take some serious time. From my unscientific online research most police departments in larger cities have a average 5 minute response time. If you live in Detroit, your police back-up won’t arrive for 24 minutes. Chicago boasts an under 4 minute time for a Priority 1 call. Alaskans, however, are expected to handle their own issues. Response times in Alaska could be hours, not minutes. Every American has the right to defend themselves from attack. Some states, however, want to severely limit how you can defend yourself, and for how long.

    Then we have a few counties around the US where the elected Sheriff’s have stated they will not enforce any new gun laws. Good for them. It’s about time someone in power grabbed their testicles and acted like a man and a citizen of our great country.

    Don’t get me wrong, I believe in freedom, the constitution, and my rights as a citizen. I also believe that some gun control is necessary but not an outright ban on damn near everything that millions of us already own and use responsibly.

    I believe in more stringent background checks and mental health screening. I also think that high capacity magazines (over 30 rounds) should be banned. I, and my shooting colleagues, cannot think of any reason why we would need over 30 rounds of hot lead on a hunting expedition. Sure, it’s cool and manly, but is it really necessary?

    Luckily, the tougher positions of Obama’s gun control provisions will have to be settled by Congress. We all know what that means. All this gun control fenzy will blow over and get lost in committees, sub-committees, filibusters, panels, and back-door brouhaha.

  13. Stevie says:

    Sorry but all this article does is outline the same old tired stuff that doesn’t stop criminals from getting guns and killing children in the schools. More children will be butchered if the conversation doesn’t get serious.

    The President’s children are protected by well trained armed guards, yet he did not include protecting our children in his national plan. Why?

    What is being discussed about bans, back round checks, etc. is insane.

    The schools are sitting ducks for a copy cat killer.

    There are armed guards at the courthouse and they protect the County Commissioners. Why not the children?

  14. greg says:

    How about doing something more meaningful and deal with the prescription drug problem we have. More children are exposed to hazards from parents under the influence more people are dying from overdoses than guns. We supply the rest of the United States with pills that exceeds all the other States combined.

  15. Edman says:

    Wow! Here we go again. Same old deflecting arguments from the NRA playbook. We have more gun deaths than any other country on earth but can’t do anything about it because of the old slippery slope theory and/or the idea that since there are so many harmful things going on in our society we should ignore the violence. It seems that the same people who hate government “intrusion” on weapons want the rst of us to just give up… not this time! If we can regulate smoking in public, drunk driving, assaults with other weapons, etc. we can protect people with other common sense gun laws.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I agree with more or background checks on ALL guns bought by a dealer. The gun show loophole should go away. If you give a shot gun to your kid for their birthday ???? We already have laws that are not enforced harshly enough. As for the “asault” wepons they are nothing more then a scary lookin gun (to some). i would have no problem with limiting mags to 10/12 rounds.

  17. kmedley says:

    This video was posted on Facebook. It’s John Stossels’ report on gun controls and the myth that such laws reduce violence and crime. Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFLK6yZYeC4

    While having this debate, it is important for us to remember why our Founders, and the thirteen states formed under the Articles of Confederation, fought for the Second Amendment. The British did confiscate weapons, ammo, and assault weapons of the era. Did this stop the Revolution? No. Those who wanted freedom from Mother England still found a way to acquire guns and ammo, either through stealing them from weapons depots guarded by the British, or through deals with France, our Founders were able to secure guns.

    Let’s also remember Nazi Germany. Now I know this raises passions; but, Hitler confiscated the guns. And whether it sounds crazy in today’s world, there are many who believe the gun registration and the Executive Orders signed yesterday provide a database for the government to confiscate guns here in the U.S. If your reaction is it can’t happen here, I’ll wager that’s what many thought in Germany and Russia.

    My son attends Matanzas High School. Like many families, he and I had many conversations about the Sandy Hook shooting, along with the shooting in Aurora, Colorado. My son said when he started this year, he noticed the officer on campus and noted the gun and taser the officer carried. I asked him what he thought when he saw the weapons. To sum up his response, the weapons made him pause and understand the deterrent factor that comes with the argument of armed guard versus a simple door controlled by office staff who may or may not buzz one in. What if any of the office staff at Sandy Hook had been carrying a concealed weapon? It’s a perfectly reasonable question to ask.

    Here’s yet another. What if Adam Lanza had not been able to get a gun from his mother’s home? Would he have simply given up his plan? What if the NFL player who shot his girlfriend and then turned the gun on himself had not been able to get a gun? Would he have still found a way to kill her and himself? There’s a part from an old cheer I shouted in high school, ‘Where there’s a will, there’s a way!’

    Our society is fraught with people who are just plain evil and with those who have mental health issues that either need help, refuse help, need medication, or refuse to take medication. And yet, We the People, those who are law abiding, who register guns, who submit to a background check, who invest in gun locks and safes, who attend safety classes and concealed weapons classes are being asked to surrender our guns and Second Amendment rights. What gun law, eithe current or proposed would have stopped Sandy Hook, Aurora, Virginia Tech or any of the 35 referenced in this editorial? What about the school shootings that were ended because a teacher or adult on the campus was carrying a weapon? Why aren’t these covered in the news?

    Yesterday, Fox & Friends hosted a weapon’s expert. He discussed the limiting of rounds in the magazine and the differences between those guns that will be banned and those that are allowed. A skilled shooter can easily take three magazines, with no more than seven bullets, and change them out within a matter of seconds. He also demonstrated how these guns shoot. It is not reminiscent of Rambo. One bullet is discharged with each pull of the trigger. It’s not a rapid fire sub-machine gun. There’s a difference between automatic and semi-automatic. Did you know an empty gun is also a weapon? Ever watched Goodfellas when he pistol whips Karen’s neighbor? Lanza could have inflicted just as much damage with a handgun.

    Prohibition did not work for liquor and it won’t work for guns. How’s the war on drugs going? In all instances, the criminals will still be able to get guns and drugs. Even under age kids get booze. Again, where there’s a will there’s a way. How about the Executive Order which will allow doctors to ask if you own a gun? If you answer truthfully, are you then reported and will FCSO be knocking at the door for the gun?

    Senseless killing has been a part of mankind long before our Nation was conceived. Surrendering our guns and our right to own the type of gun we choose will not stop the killings. I prefer the model of gun control adopted by Kennesaw, Georgia and the video by John Stossel explains it.

  18. johnny taxpayer says:

    “Universal background check would extend to any private sale of a gun, eliminating the gunshow loophole.”

    There is no gunshow loophole, that is a fallacy created in the media. Guns sold by licensed firearm retailers require background checks, guns sold by individuals do not, whether at a gun show or in someone’s house or via craigslist. The only thing “universal background checks” will accomplish is allowing the federal government to keep track of every gun sold. Do we have universal background checks every time someone wants to exercise their 1st amendment rights? The second amendment does not say “right to bare arms, so long as the Government says it’s okay”.

    Secondly, the Ms Holland points out “assault” weapons were used in 35 mass shootings between 1982-2012. But what she fails to include is the necessary context. A) a number of those mass shootings occurred DURING the assault weapons ban, which only expired in 2004. b) the Mother Jones report cited (hardly an unbiased fact finder) failed to give any measure to mass shootings that were prevented because a lawful gun owner was able to stop the tragedy or minimize it before it reached the minimum 4 dead threshold to be counted as a “mass shooting” in their study and c) once again there is no consideration as to how many of these 35 mass shootings occurred in “Gun free zones” where law abiding citizens were not legally permitted to carry their fire arm and thus prevented from responding?

    If we’re going to holster incendiary rhetoric and have a meaningful discussion on guns, it needs to start at square one without any predetermined assumptions on what the solutions will be. A meaningful discussion doesn’t start with the assumption that an assault weapons ban, limiting magazine capacity, and universal background checks are going to solve the problem. It starts at the beginning.

  19. Magnolia says:

    Did the President do anything yesterday to offer mental health assistance to the parents of these little serial killers? They are the ones doing the killings, NOT the honest gun owners.

    In both Chicago and DC, guns are ILLEGAL. They have the highest murder rates in the nation.

    This is not about guns; it is about control. You are wasting your time. This amendment is going to stand. It was meant to protect us from the actions or inactions of our government and it is working.

  20. Dennis says:

    Have to agree with what most have to say here. It’s time we hold the PEOPLE that commit these crimes with guns responsible for their actions. Not the weapon used to carry it out. It seems the current culture is to blame everything but the person responsible.

    Punishing the law abiding citizen for the actions of criminals is insane.

  21. confidential says:

    No distortions please!!
    No one wants to take the guns away from law abiding citizens or their second amendment right!
    What is needed is the proper Universal background check enforced and the high power assault weapons and high capacity clips out of our communities as they only belong in the battlegrounds and are not for defense or sport hunting but instead killing machines for humans.
    No matter the looong rhetoric against enforcing common sense laws, to prevent the slaughter of innocent children and others, we need legislation to pass ASAP. Miica and Rubio, get it?

  22. Deep South says:

    Don’t bring New York’s issues to Florida. Two entirely different states, with entirely different cultures, and lifestyles. That’s why the United States is so unique, and lets keep it that way.

  23. Joe says:

    Mrs Holland, the real issue is mental health, you could have mentioned it once at least!!!!!!!

  24. Outsider says:

    Those of you who can “see no reason” for having more than ten rounds in a magazine have never been in the middle of a riot where hundreds of criminals roam the streets in search of victims to loot, rob and rape.

    • Anonymous says:

      People need to remember the LA riots. It was armed citizens like the shopkeepers in places like Koreatown who took back the streets of LA. The reality is that sort of civil unrest can snowball anywhere. You will call 911 and nobody will come to your aid because they will be too busy defending their own neighborhoods and families.

      America being occupied by a foreign army is likewise not outside the realm of possibility. The government plans for such scenarios, and they would not be able to secure every single town or resource. Think Red Dawn.

      “I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few public officials.” – George Mason

  25. GatorManPC says:

    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 2nd amendment is not for the right to keep and bear arms for hunting. It is to keep and bear arms for the protection of our freedom from enemies foriegn and domestic including any tyrant who thinks he can impose his will on our freedoms.

    I hear comments like “when they wrote the 2nd amendment they had muskets. If they new about assault rifles they wouldn’t have written that so you should have a musket.” But they knew exactly what they were doing. You can’t fight fully automatic machine guns with muskets. If the day ever comes and I pray it does not, that the government does decide to take away our freedoms and abolish the Constitution and bill of rights I’ll be glad that I can put up a fighting chance to preserve our republic and not just get boarded into a cattle car with my children.

  26. realist82 says:

    So what do we do when a mass killing is done by a knife oh wait that has happened already many times…guess we should ban knives and and cutting tools too…are you serious? Take away the innocents right to bare arms and the law bidding citizens of this world will be left to defend themselves with what ….words at a criminal who does not follow the law and is armed to the teeth. “Hey bad guy robbing raping …killing for little to nothing u better stop your not allowed to have a gun anymore its the law now”. Give me a break! Guns do t kill people people kill people has been this way since man first walked the earth. Lets just say what is happening here …its 1984 being shoved down our throats ..full goverment control and deception and always watching….if you dont know what im saying pick up the book and read it before they ban that too.

  27. Henry says:

    The only thing that this gun control issue is doing is raising the price of guns and many many people are making a “killing” out of the tradegy in Newport CT. Guns don’t kill, people kill people.

  28. Abra Seay says:

    Thank you Colleen Conklin for representing Flagler County Schools! We use to have school resource officers at every school in Flagler County until budget cuts. My husband had the best idea I’ve heard yet. Our country has so many veterans; those returning from war or will be returning and those that have retired, etc. Why don’t we use OUR taxpayer dollars to place one or two resource officers at EVERY school in our country and employ our veterans at the same time? School resource officers have a positive impact on school climate. Lets use our tax money to protect our precious children like the president, congress and judges get protected and not take the guns from law abiding citizens.

  29. Jim Wingo says:

    Let’s not forget that in 1978, Jim Jones executed 914 of his followers with kool-aid. We didn’t ban kool-aid!

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