January 11, 2011

Jared Loughner’s Glock.

What “sport” are glocks with extended cartridges best for?

A national moment of mourning becomes political theater: will we learn from this? All reports indicate “no” changes will be made to gun control/gun rights.

Jared Loughner’s gun, which cost only about $500, from a photo on his MySpace page:

From ABC:

Kristen Rand, legislative director of the Violence Policy Center, said the pistol’s price ranges from $400 to $500, not including bullets and magazines. Wal-Mart Inc. confirmed that Loughner tried to buy ammunition at one of its stores but was refused service due to “strange behavior,” according to the FBI. He was later able to get it at another Wal-Mart.

He bought the gun itself here, from Sportsman’s Warehouse. What “sport” are glocks with extended cartridges best for?

From a blog in defense of gun rights:

Inevitably, gun control advocates will ask why anyone needs a 30-round magazine. Why shouldn’t “high capacity magazines” be banned—as they are in CA and MA—by federal fiat? Because the same firepower that Loughner unleashed on innocent victims could save the life of an innocent person armed with a Glock 19 with a 30-round magazine when faced by an assailant or assailants. Sad, but true.

What sort of self-defense requires 31 shots?

Here’s what Mr. Loughner’s automatic-fire glock (with extended cartrage that allowed him to get off 31 shots) looks like, how it fires—30-plus shots in less than 15 seconds.


From Christian Science Monitor:

Why Jared Loughner was allowed to buy a gun

Despite evidence that Arizona shooting suspect Jared Loughner is mentally unstable, he was never declared mentally unfit by a court, so his name did not appear in the federal background-check database used by gun sellers.

…The federal Gun Control Act of 1968 prohibits the possession of firearms by the mentally ill. So why was Mr. Loughner able to guy a gun?

The ability to own a firearm is a constitutionally protected right, and depriving someone of that right involves a legal process…

…The best-known evidence of Loughner’s mental issues comes from Pima Community College, where he was suspended last year apparently because of mental problems. The college informed him that he could return only if he obtained “a mental health clearance indicating that, in the opinion of a mental health professional, his presence at the college does not present a danger to himself or others.”…

Some states have been slow to report names that belong in the “do not sell” list, even after Congress passed a law in 2007 aimed at punishing states with inadequate compliance records and providing incentives to states with good reporting records.

The law passed after the Virginia Tech shooting that year, in which a mentally ill student killed 32 people. In 2005, a judge had declared the shooter, Seung Hui Cho, a danger to himself and ordered him into psychiatric care. But Mr. Cho was still able to purchase two semiautomatic handguns, because his name did not appear in the NICS database.

The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence reported last Friday, the day before the Tucson shootings, that between Jan. 1, 2008, and Aug. 31, 2010, the number of disqualifying mental illness records submitted to NICS by states and territories had more than doubled – from 402,047 records to 929,254. Adding federal records brings the total to nearly 1.1 million.

But the Brady campaign argues that “millions of relevant records” are still missing from the system…for the rest, click here.

The sad thing is…unless we rise up in organized protest, unless our pundits and politicians grow a conscience and make beautiful noise…nothing much will change in terms of ready and affordable access to murder weapons. If we don’t learn from history, we’re doomed to repeat it. So next time this happens, and it will happen again, my raw, sad heart and your raw, sad heart will be calcified, cynical, we’ll say I told you so with dissatisfaction under our breath.

For our nation is a nation in love with guns.

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