I’m not going to use the name of the 22-year-old Santa Barbara mass murderer that killed 6 people in a homicidal rampage before shooting himself. This killer was in desperate need of attention and even made youtube videos announcing his deviant plans. I think the media circulating the face and name of these psychopaths inspires others to commit acts so they can achieve the attention they crave and go out “with a bang.”
Moreover, as always after a mass shooting happens fellow bloggers, people on social media, and the news media all wring their hands wondering how a mass shooting like this can be prevented in the future. We toss around ideas like gun control, and improving our mental health system, however we always fail to see any action by politicians to implement some kind of change.
Additionally, the same tired old debates usually break out with one side dramatically claiming that the government is infringing on their gun rights. It’s all like a bad horror movie that keeps repeating every time a tragedy like this occurs.
Let’s take a look at the facts of this case. The mass murderer posted videos on youtube where he bluntly described his devious plans to kill people. His parents became alarmed, and alerted law enforcement. The police showed up for a welfare check, but legally they were unable do anything else beyond that.
Furthermore, unbeknownst to police, this 22-year-old had an arsenal of firearms inside his apartment. However, legal experts say he was of age to purchase them, had no criminal record, and even if police did spot them, there is nothing they could have done. Their hands were tied.
People on TV are throwing around blanket solutions like “gun control” and improving our mental health system. The fact of the matter is, we need an “all of the above” solution. We need to improve the relationship between mental health professionals, law enforcement, and strengthen our gun laws in a common sense way. Note to all gun rights fanatics: I’m not saying all guns should be banned. I’m not even delving into the debate on what sort of guns should be legal or illegal. So read carefully…
Why can’t we start with putting together standards allowing law enforcement to check someone into a mental institution for evaluation if they’re going around publicly announcing their plans to commit mass murder? Why can’t those deranged individuals be flagged in a database made available to gun sellers so they cannot legally be allowed to purchase firearms?
Equally important, If people announce plans to murder people, why can’t law enforcement legally search their residence and confiscate any firearms? All of that sounds reasonable, and the government wouldn’t be infringing on the rights of the single woman who legally obtained a firearm to protect herself at night, or the hunter who owns rifles to go deer hunting.
There is a problem in this country when people can go on youtube and announce their intentions to “slay” and “annihilate” people on a “day of retribution” and nothing is done to prevent it… Even after law enforcement is made aware of it.
We’ve also got to stop the often uninformed and ignorant discussions surrounding these tragedies. For example. “Joe the Plumber,” a plumber in the state of Ohio, that turned into a Tea Party darling during the 2008 presidential election by confronting Barack Obama about his politics is weighing in on the Santa Barbara shootings.
The plumber penned an “open letter” to the families of the victims. In that letter Joe the Plumber states that “As harsh as this sounds — your dead kids don’t trump my Constitutional rights…”
Here’s the harsh truth you fail to comprehend Joe. It’s not about you. Most reasonable people recognize your right to purchase a gun, unless you have publicly made retribution plans that include “slaying” people like this murderer did, nobody is considering taking your gun rights away. Before spouting off ignorant and distasteful “open letters” to families days after their loved one is gunned down, show some tact.
As for our politicians… Are you going to listen to the ignorant rants of a plumber in Ohio, or a man that lost his son to gun violence at the hands a mentally deranged man who posted videos on youtube announcing his plans in advance?