In an interview with Inside Edition last night, Richard Martinez, father of Isla Vista victim Christopher Martinez, joined the “You don’t need” chorus of gun control proponents who have unilaterally decided how many firearms and how much ammunition someone should have based on “need,” as noted by USA Today.
“I don’t have a problem with keeping a weapon for personal use,” Martinez said in an emotional interview with the entertainment program, “but you don’t need an AK-47, you don’t need 400 rounds, you don’t need three handguns. We don’t let people keep nuclear bombs in their basements. Why don’t we do that? Because it’s not reasonable.”
The interview has been posted on YouTube. In the edited interview, Martinez questions, “Should a young person living in a city have three semiautomatic weapons and 400 rounds of ammunition?”
Liberal media are following the same meme. Cosmopolitan noted yesterday that, “According to reports, Rodger had a massive amount of weaponry and ammunition with him when he went on a shooting spree on Friday night. When police discovered Rodger dead in his car they also found three semiautomatic weapons and magazines loaded with over 400 rounds of ammunition.”
But the firearms community is beginning to look at Martinez not just as a grieving father who is lashing out, but as “the newest gun control crusader,” typified by a headline Wednesday on The Gun Wire. Indeed, his remarks seem all-too-familiar when he talks about “need” and when he inserts a remark about an AK-47, which had nothing to do with the killing spree unleashed five days ago near the University of California, Santa Barbara.
Parents of the other victims have not been so outspoken since the attack by suspected mass killer Elliot Rodger. He stabbed his first three victims at his Isla Vista apartment, and then opened fire on three co-eds, killing two of them. Christopher Martinez was the last victim, also killed by gunfire, before Rodger traded shots with sheriff’s deputies and then apparently took his own life.
More about the alleged killer has surfaced, including a report by CNN indicating that not only was Rodger living in a fantasy world, his lifestyle of being from a privileged family was also apparently a façade. CNN reports that his parents had financial problems and that the BMW3 series coupe he got from his mother was a used car.
When he signed up for a jobs program, jobs suggested by his counselor were ones that he “considered to be beneath me.” In his passage about this fruitless job search, Rodger’s arrogance was evident.
“My mother wanted me to get a simple retail job,” he recounted, “and the thought of myself doing that was mortifying. It would be completely against my character. I am an intellectual who is destined for greatness. I would never perform a low class service job.”
CNN also reported that Rodger was critical of his parents. He scorned his father for having gone into debt pushing an unsuccessful film, and he criticized his mother for not having married a wealthy man after his parents divorced. He even commented in his “manifesto” that “I told her she should sacrifice her well-being for the sake of my happiness…”
Now the 22-year-old “virgin killer,” as he has been dubbed, has brought considerable unhappiness to all around him and parents of his victims, including Richard Martinez. And from his remarks over the past few days, Martinez is fully engaged in spreading that unhappiness around, and he he is already being called on it.
In his remarks to Inside Edition, he declared, “I hate the fact that we’ve lived through all these acts of violence and nothing’s been done.” He calls the history of alleged inaction on gun regulation “inexcusable.”
But the firearms community would strongly disagree. A lot of things have been done that only have affected law-abiding gun owners, and have not demonstrably prevented a single tragedy. The nation adopted background checks, and some states including California have expanded those and instituted waiting periods on handgun purchases, but they didn’t prevent Isla Vista. Connecticut had some of the toughest gun laws in the nation, but they didn’t prevent Sandy Hook and the laws have become even more restrictive, essentially turning many law-abiding gun owners into criminals.
The rhetoric is beginning to sound like it has been part of this man’s lexicon for quite some time. His personal tragedy has brought it bubbling to the surface. He even asserted that the leadership of the National Rifle Association “behave like thugs,” because they “intimidate” and “they’re aggressive, they are violent in a verbal way.”
Enter Joseph Wurzelbacher, who skyrocketed to fame in 2008 as “Joe the Plumber,” who challenged then-candidate Barack Obama about the Democrat’s political platform. Wurzelbacher was quoted yesterday observing that “There are no critical words for a grieving father.”
But Joe the Plumber also said something else that is resonating among gun rights activists. In an open letter, he told Martinez, “I cannot begin to imagine the pain you are going through, having had your child taken away from you. However, any feelings you have toward my rights being taken away from me, lose those.”