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We must change our gun culture in America

Uploaded: May 31, 2022
We live in a country in love with guns – significantly more than any other country in the world. Many Americans idolize them. This gun reverence has worsened the past 10 years, because of a variety of reasons. Perhaps it’s a need for men to feel macho, for women to feel protected. So what if guns can kill -- if I feel better, then I want a gun, countless Americans say.

Perhaps it’s because many think that gun control is a culturally elite viewpoint, one which contradicts the feelings of the more ordinary Americans, those who love their guns, enjoy hunting, enjoy the s tatus of owning a gun – all his friends have one, some have two … or three …or more Perhaps it’s because, as many Second Amendment advocates proclaim, owning guns is one of our cherished American freedoms, and we want our freedoms, and will fight for them if anyone interferes with them.

With all these attitudes, it will be difficult to get rid of powerful guns in our country, since owning them has become an inherent right.

What we need to do is change our gun culture in America.

An example of cultural views: A couple of years ago, my husband and I took a cruise down the Mississippi and stopped at Vicksburg, Mississippi for lunch. Next to us were wo women in their mid-30s, chatting away.

“Oh no!” one suddenly proclaimed, as she searched through her handbag. .”Oh , how could I do this,” she cried, glancing at our table. “Did you lose your cellphone?” I asked. “No, she resaid -- I left my gun home. How could I have done that.”

Is there a problem here in Vicksburg, I asked? “No, I guess we don’t have many problems because this is a lovely town. I was born here.” She asked where we come from. California. “Oh, they don’t like guns there, do they,” she asked. Some of us don’t.

Becoming more animated, she told me they like guns in Mississippi. “In fact, we just bought my five-year-old daughter a pretty pink gun, and my seven-year-old son a blue gun. We’re going to give them lessons next week on how to use them.” At that age. I asked?

“Yes. We have guns at home. My husband and I each have one at our bedside, and a rifle in the closet, and two rifles downstairs. We feel that we are safe, now.

I couldn’t think of anything to reply

One of the big gun manufacturers, Daniel Defense, has a new ad out, a commentator on a news show this week showed the audience. It pictured a small child, perhaps two years old, holding an AR-15 in his hands. The voice over said if a child gets used to a gun like this at an early age, he will use it for the rest of his life!

The laws in many states do not allow children to even be photographed with knives, or cigarettes, or any alcohol, the commentator said. But evidently there are no laws forbidding ads with little kids holding guns. Texas allows 18-year-olds to buy AR-15s, but not handguns.

To repeat, we have a gun culture problem in our country.

Indeed, the cover of the NYT’s Sunday Review section this week proclaimed over and over down the page, “Authorities say the gunman was able to obtain the weapons legally.” Keep that sentence in mind.

Yes, we’ve heard that our country has more guns and gun deaths than all other Western nations. Noted columnist Fareed Zakaria on his CNN program on Sunday pointed out the specific differences,

He had a big bar graph that showed the enormous number of gun homicides in this country compared to other western nations. According to a University of Washington study, the gun homicide rate in the U.S. is h8 percent higher than in Canada, 50 percent higher than in Germany, 100 times higher than the UK, and in Japan,250 times higher than the U.S. In other words, the United States is off the charts.

You know the statistics -- United States has 4 percent of the world’s population, but is responsible for 50 percent of the gun sales in the world. Sales of AR-15s are millions a year. THE NSSF (a firearm industry trade association) estimated more than 16 million “modern sporting rifles” were in circulation by 2018.

We are being told that the reasons for all the school mass killings and shootings is because many were done by the mentally ill individuals in our country. But certainly. we can’t have more mentally ill than Great Britain or Germany or Japan that would account for our great er number of gun homicides.

The fact is, we have the most heavily armed civilian culture in the world.

Yes, we can do many things to control gun violence – sell only to those over-21 years of age; conduct more background checks, ban the sales of AR-15s and other high-powered guns and rounds of ammunition. All good measures to enact.

But to me the real problem in this country is the gun culture that says our freedom to have guns carries more weight than the outcome of hundreds of adults and children dying from these guns. These individuals also had rights – and all kids alive still have the right to not get killed by a gun. Right now, “freedom for me to have a gun” trumps all. We have to change that culture.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving changed the drinking-and-driving culture in our country years ago – we all know because of government action the fines and punishments now enforced are severe if we are caught driving while intoxicated – loss of license, inability to get car insurance, etc. And Americans have responded.

If the two 18-year-old teen in Buffalo and Uvalde didn’t carry AR15s and magazines, many of those shot would be alive today. People are yelling, “do something!” We have to act now.

Guns kill, period.
Democracy.
What is it worth to you?

Comments

 +   9 people like this
Posted by Jennifer, a resident of another community,
on May 31, 2022 at 9:28 pm

Jennifer is a registered user.

Guns kill, period is correct. I have no desire to own a gun. I don't need one to feel safe. Even if I owned one it would be unloaded, and it wouldn't do me any good if someone broke in. It's not like a criminal would grant me to time to load it.

That being said, if we get rid of guns someone will find some other way to kill. Stabbings would become more common. So would poisoning your spouse. Instead of shooting up a school, they might blow up the school, drive a vehicle through a classroom, etc.

There's a lot we need to do as far as gun control, but I don't know if violence can ever be controlled.


 +   15 people like this
Posted by William Jeffries, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 8:40 am

William Jeffries is a registered user.

Guns per se are being blamed for these senseless tragedies rather than the active shooters themselves.

That said, the Second Amendment guarantees the right to bear arms and it may need to be revised in order to assure some degree of societal safety in America.

47 states (excluding California, Illinois, New York, and the District of Columbia) allow the 'open carry' of firearms and some adherents believe this deters crime.

Ironically, the three 'non-open carry states have the highest crime rates in the country

'Gun culture' is pretty much a red state vs blue state issue and since no technical stipulations are listed in the Second Amendment, it will be very difficult for Congress to establish sweeping gun reform as various civilian restrictions will most likely be challenged in the SCOTUS.

Harsh prohibitionary measures have always had a way of creating even more underground criminal activity as we have witnessed with both alcohol and marijuana so there is no easy solution to this highly contentious issue.

On a closing note, if American citizens are to be limited by revised gun laws, so should the police as they too have been responsible for reckless shootings and murders of innocent people.








 +   10 people like this
Posted by Sarah Kenyon, a resident of Menlo Park,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 9:08 am

Sarah Kenyon is a registered user.

"Guns per se are being blamed for these senseless tragedies rather than the active shooters themselves."

The recent mass shootings were carried out by white nativists who adhere to the misguided concept of replacement theory and the ones targeted were primarily minority people of color.

It is up to the FBI, DOJ, AFT, and law enforcement to investigate, pursue, and irradiate race-related terrorism.

Responsible gun owners should not be punished for the irresponsible acts of others.

It's no different than automobiles which also kill a lot of people so do we ban cars or make them slower?

Limiting firepower on guns is akin to telling a car owner that he or she cannot own a Corvette or a Ferrari which far exceeds what any driver normally needs to get from Point A to Point B.

As Eric Clapton sang in The Color of Money, "It's in the way that you use it" as the majority of gun owners are not terrorists or mentally deranged.


 +   15 people like this
Posted by John Donegan, a resident of another community,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 9:13 am

John Donegan is a registered user.

Ironically, much of the increase in gun ownership is driven by the left's beloved agenda. Catch and release policing, decriminalization of "minor" crimes like auto burglary, early release of prisoners, eliminating bail in favor of OR release, the war on the police, etc. all make people feel vulnerable. When you hear proposals to defund or abolish the police, it is reasonable to fear that we are increasingly on our own to protect ourselves. Gun ownership helps allows that.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Bystander, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 11:01 am

Bystander is a registered user.

If a child in a playground is caught with a stick and using it to hit another child, we don't blame the stick, but we do take it away.

After that, we discipline the child attempting to find out the reason for the problem.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Butch Halliday, a resident of Los Altos,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 11:33 am

Butch Halliday is a registered user.

"...the gun homicide rate in the U.S. is h8 percent higher than in Canada, 50 percent higher than in Germany, 100 times higher than the UK, and in Japan, 250 times higher than the U.S. In other words, the United States is off the charts."

While these are disturbing statistics, the aforementioned countries never had to take up arms to fight for their freedom from outside influences or internal conflicts.

It should also be noted that guns ensured America's freedom and Manefest Destiny.

America took up arms to gain its independence from England, to aquire additional territories via the Mexican War, to restore (or to destroy) the Union during the Civil War, to further its imperialistic aspirations during the Spanish American War, to preserve democracy in both World Wars I and II, and to prevent the Communists from taking over all of Korea.

Guns and rifles also ensured westward expansion during the 19th century.

Advanced firearms are a part of American culture and to disavow such a connection is to be in denial of America's historical realities.

When only the police and military have advanced weaponry, we will find all of ourselves living under a repressive dictatorship.

The only alternative would be to ban all assault weapons globally so that we can all live in peace and remain full-time inhabitants of the Woodstock Nation.


 +   18 people like this
Posted by Marianne Ludlow, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 12:06 pm

Marianne Ludlow is a registered user.

I don't find anything wrong with children being exposed to safe and responsible gun ownership within an appropriate area (i.e. a rural or forested area).

Having grown up in a heavily forested part of Pennsylvania, I was taught how to safely fire a .22 carbine at six and at 10, I received my first 30.30 deer rifle. Shotguns followed later.

Hunting game is an enjoyable pastime and this endeavor should not be unfairly compared with those who abuse and/or misuse their firearms for nefarious purposes.

I am an NRA member and I only shoot ducks, pheasants, deer, and elk when in season.


 +   10 people like this
Posted by Patrick Nelson, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 12:39 pm

Patrick Nelson is a registered user.

> Guns kill, period.

Yes they do but the trigger person is actively involved and ultimately responsible for whatever transpires.

As another poster noted, cars also kill but isn't the driver responsible?

A parked car is relatively harmless as is an unloaded firearm (regardless of its capacity or firepower) in a safely locked cabinet.

Reckless/irresponsible drivers and random shooters with a grudge are the ones to blame, not the guns.

Geez, if not for the 2nd Amendment we'd probably still be under British colonial rule or a modern day Commonwealth.

It should also be noted that America has always taken up arms on the behalf of or to defend its allies so in many ways, modern advancements in firearm technology have served a worthwhile purpose.

Throughout its history, American citizens have always had access to whatever was current technologically...from muskets to modern day firearms.

It comes with the territory and yes, guns are a historic part of American culture but to each his/her own providing they are not breaking the law or doing harm to others.


 +   12 people like this
Posted by Gabriel Baliger, a resident of Atherton: other,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 1:43 pm

Gabriel Baliger is a registered user.

There is no "we" here.

My rights are not up for discussion.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Horst Beuhler, a resident of Mountain View,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 2:35 pm

Horst Beuhler is a registered user.

Another option would be to have either armed security guards or police officers stationed at schools and public gatherings with directives to shoot anyone suspiciously carrying a firearm onto the premises or grounds.

It is time to put an end to all this violence.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Old Steve, a resident of Rex Manor,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 2:41 pm

Old Steve is a registered user.

Mr. Nelson,

We don't have commercial access to fully loaded F/A18's or truck mounted 50 cal machine guns. So why do we have access to 30 round clips and bumpstocks??

We either interpret the Second Amendment as the founders intended (I'll never come for your single shot front loader.=))

Or we interpret it as it makes common sense today: Background checks, waiting periods, clip limits.

I have to register and insure my car. Why can't registering and insuring your guns also be part of modern public safety??


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Biff Preston, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 2:58 pm

Biff Preston is a registered user.

"I have to register and insure my car. Why can't registering and insuring your guns also be part of modern public safety?"

Gun registration is OK but mandatory gunowner's insurance will complicate matters due to projected liabilities.

Lawyers will argue justifiable cause which in many instances will create further complications and delays in resolving gun-related civil court cases.

This in turn could get very expensive as only the lawyers come out ahead in prolonged court cases.

As Gabriel Baliger said, "My rights are not up for discussion."

Having served in the military defending democracy and American ideals, why should I and other responsible gun owners be forced to surrender our Constitutional rights because of a few rotten apples?


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Old Steve, a resident of St. Claire Gardens,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 4:11 pm

Old Steve is a registered user.

We'll note that this small school district has its own police force. The resource officer was not a in position to engage the shooter.

@Biff, What specifically enumerated Constitutional Right would any of the current proposals force you to surrender?? Another shooting in progress today, in another state that believes in more guns...


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Frank Landis, a resident of Bailey Park,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 4:11 pm

Frank Landis is a registered user.

"We don't have commercial access to fully loaded F/A18's or truck mounted 50 cal machine guns. So why do we have access to 30 round clips and bumpstocks?"

@Mr. Old Steve:

From a realistic standpoint, few civilians would be capable of flying a fully armed F/A 18 which is a US NAVY carrier-based fighter jet, let alone gain authorized entry onto the carrier itself.

The Toyota pickups with mounted 50 caliber machines guns are more prevalent the Arab and Middle Eastern countries where gun restrictions are not strictly enforced.

30 round clips are no different than wanting to have more storage capacity on one's computer.

The majority of the passenger cars we drive today were engineered and vastly improved from road racing endeavors.

Contemporary firearms are no different as they were derived and designed to meet the needs of modern warfare (i.e. more firepower).

It's like having a choice between driving a Ford Model T or a BMW, Audi, Porsche, Honda/Acura etc.

There is no turning back on technology and like cars and computers, countless individuals want to be on the leading edge of whatever strikes their fancy.

And like fast cars, not everyone should own one.


 +   8 people like this
Posted by Tyler Reed, a resident of Palo Alto Hills,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 4:54 pm

Tyler Reed is a registered user.

> Why can't registering and insuring your guns also be part of modern public safety?

@Old Steve...

Because there are already countless unregistered firearms already in circulation and chances are their owners are not going to register them.

Like how does one go about registering a firearm that has the serial numbers filed off?

Convicted felons (including those on supervised probation) cannot possess firearms under any circumstances and do you think they are going to be the first in line...especially if they have enemies on the streets?

In reality, only law abiding gun owners will be held hostage by the proposed gun reform laws.

The car analogy was spot on as there are countless drivers operating a motor vehicle without a current license or none at all.

A level playing field is imperative for gun laws to move forward.

And this means even the hardened criminals and underworld participants will need to fully comply to make things work.

Now what are the chances of that ever occuring?

Being from eastern Idaho, I believe in open carry but California law prohibits it.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Jennifer, a resident of another community,
on Jun 1, 2022 at 5:59 pm

Jennifer is a registered user.

Comparing guns to cars, sticks, etc. is illogical. Cars are made to drive, not shoot and kill. Sticks are part of a branch, and not made to shoot and kill. Under this illogical argument, just about anything can kill. Hitting someone in the back of the head with a chair, shoe, table can kill too.

Guns in the hands of law enforcement and the military. If you family is shot and killed by a mass shooter (or anyone) remember it was you who defended the right to carry. You can't have it both ways.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Mondoman, a resident of Green Acres,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 3:15 am

Mondoman is a registered user.

Re: "If the two 18-year-old teen in Buffalo and Uvalde didn't carry AR15s and magazines, many of those shot would be alive today."

I suspect it's not as easy as that, which adds to the impasse. Cato recently noted "Most pistols sold in the United States come equipped with magazines that hold between 10 and 17 rounds. In fact, those holding 10 rounds are generally compact or subcompact models." These are not "assault" weapons, just normal pistols, easy to carry and easy to rapidly reload with additional magazines. In a classroom or other short-range situation, they would be as deadly as assault rifles.

I don't see any technical fix here that will make a meaningful impact.

I do remember reading probably 15 years ago an analysis that showed that strong enforcement of laws with strong penalties against illegal gun possession and using guns in a crime substantially reduced criminals' gun carry rate in at least one city (Philadelphia perhaps?). That seems like something people could agree on, but it requires time and funding and intensive policing that seems out of fashion today.


 +   14 people like this
Posted by Hinrich, a resident of Old Palo Alto,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 7:07 am

Hinrich is a registered user.

It's our culture. It's young people growing up in broken families. The junk that passes for our shared culture is dark and distressing and produced by greedy evil people exploiting the young and the violent. Childhood isn't what it used to be. Everywhere the essential elements of a successful society is being attacked by so-called progressives trying to erase gender, stir racial division, infect education, and divide communities - Leaving young with a bleak idea of the future. Zuckerberg, etc and so-called social media has become a dark area of bullying and despair. Kids are ever more pushed to buy the latest $1000 sneaker, to paint themselves with faux identities, and fake virtual experience. Too many are sidelined, too many grow up without real work to foster life skills and sufficient social integration - too many without necessary mothers and fathers in single or broken homes. Too many families under severe stresses facing a world challenged, demeaned, and ‘re-imagined' by people who have no clue. It's not the guns - It's the culture. No bail, no punishment, no consequences - no stability, no civility. Fix the culture. We need to recreate better homes, greater regard for families. Whatever flavor of California's out-there progressivism you prefer, we need to acknowledge - and fix - a failing environment that isn't working for anyone.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Simone Porter, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 7:44 am

Simone Porter is a registered user.

Firearms regardless of their capacity & firepower are symbolic cultural icons in America.

They symbolize freedom, the right to self-defend, and the timeless mantra of 'dont tread on me' (aka get off of my back, cloud, property etc.).

To a certain extent, the right to bear arms emboldens the citizenry to prevent America from ever being conquered by a foreign entity.

Ideally, guns should only be used to defend oneself & family against intruders or to put food on the table but things don't always go as planned.

It is only natural for some gun enthusiasts to want to own the latest in firearm technology...no different than avid followers coveting the latest pair of Air Jordans, most recent Apple iPhone, or the newest Porsche etc.

It should also be noted that fully automatic weapons are illegal to own in the United States. The assault rifles receiving the bad rap are actually semi-automatic weapons which can only fire continuously if the trigger is pulled each time. This in itself is an inherent safety feature.

If the Biden administration is truly devoted to gun control, it should (1) implement a lucrative government sponsored buy-back program for all firearms, (2) make any form of gun ownership illegal in America, and (3) imprison those found in violation of (1) & (2).

Trying to alter a nation's culture is akin to forcing native inhabitants to change their eating and/or dress habits after hundreds of years.

Good luck with that.


 +   8 people like this
Posted by Bob Paige, a resident of North Bayshore,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 7:58 am

Bob Paige is a registered user.

Sweeping gun reform will be difficult to enact.

To circumvent future random shootings, it might be more vigilant for teachers and principals to be fully armed along with churchgoers and shoppers.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Gary Peterson, a resident of Menlo Park,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 8:20 am

Gary Peterson is a registered user.

"Sticks are part of a branch, and not made to shoot and kill. Under this illogical argument, just about anything can kill."

@Jennifer: FYI...bows and arrows and spears are often crafted from wood products which come from trees.

Do we ban trees as well?

I agree with you that 'just about anything can kill' which is probably where that phrase "killing them with kindness" arose.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Bystander, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 8:54 am

Bystander is a registered user.

The fact that mass shootings are happening daily is a sad commentary on life in America.

The rest of the world is looking and can't understand it.


 +   15 people like this
Posted by Jayne Turner, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 8:59 am

Jayne Turner is a registered user.

"...just about anything can kill."

@ Jennifer & Gary Peterson

Very true. According to Roberta Flack, even songs can kill, albeit softly.


 +   18 people like this
Posted by Clint Decker, a resident of Palo Alto Hills,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 9:40 am

Clint Decker is a registered user.

A list of countries in which civilian gun ownership is illegal:

Brunei
Cambodia
Comoros
Eritrea
Fiji
Guinea-Bisseau
Maldives
Marshall Islands
Myanmar (except for Chin people)
Nauru
North Korea
Palau
Seychelles
Solomon Islands
Somalia
Timor-Leste
Vatican City / Holy See

Most are countries where the majority of Americans would not want to live, work, or vacation.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Beatrice Warner, a resident of Community Center,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 11:07 am

Beatrice Warner is a registered user.

Could global warming and climate change be attributable to this increase in gun-related violence?

Countries and regions where the climates are warmer tend to be more reactionary and right-wing than those in the more temperate climate zones.

According to scientists, temperatures in America are rising and this increase in temperature might have an indirect or direct impact on the growing number of random shootings.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Claudette, a resident of Woodside,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 11:15 am

Claudette is a registered user.

To drive a car you need a license, kids have to take courses to get permit.
To get married you need a license .
To build a house you need mountains of paperwork, time, patience and money.
The list is long.
But to buy a gun, nothing.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Consider Your Options. , a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 11:50 am

Consider Your Options. is a registered user.

Gun culture, like car culture, and smoking/vaping culture is killing people. It is driven by sophisticated corporate marketing that targets minors at very early ages. Adults should be protecting their children from this, but you'd have to be a critical thinker to do that.

The profit incentives for building cultural shift toward these practices are enormous. Corporations have figured all of this out. Too much money and power is controlled by too few people. Today's mammoth corporations need regulation if we want a healthy, stable, and safe society where individual humans can thrive.

The tools to control corporate abuse of power (including monopolies)exists in government if we, the people, will take the reins that are available to us. (Adults 45 and under, are you listening? As a group, you are mostly absent in governmental process. Venting on social media doesn't count.) A little less surfing and phone pecking, and a more meaningful, informed participation will be more effective to get the results you need.





 +  Like this comment
Posted by Jeremy Paine, a resident of Professorville,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 2:20 pm

Jeremy Paine is a registered user.

(a) "If the Biden administration is truly devoted to gun control, it should (1) implement a lucrative government sponsored buy-back program for all firearms, (2) make any form of gun ownership illegal in America, and (3) imprison those found in violation of (1) & (2)."

^ This is an unconstitutional pipedream and besides, Biden does not have the full support of Congress to initiate further gun controls.

(b)"...if American citizens are to be limited by revised gun laws, so should the police as they too have been responsible for reckless shootings and murders of innocent people."

^ The police are not going to adhere to any constraints pertaining to firearms control because guns are also a key part of their 'culture'.

(c) "When only the police and military have advanced weaponry, we will find all of ourselves living under a repressive dictatorship."

^ The list of aforementioned countries where guns are outlawed pretty much confirms this insight.

Bottom line...there are no easy or cut & dried solutions available at present.

BTW, firearms have to be registered when purchasing from a licensed gun shop. Private sellers and gun dealers at gun shows are exempt from having to fill out the standard paperwork.

The same applies to private sellers of black market weapons purchased on the street, providing they don't get caught.


 +   15 people like this
Posted by Johnny Yuma, a resident of Blossom Valley,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 2:35 pm

Johnny Yuma is a registered user.

The gun culture in this nation will NOT change. However, for those who want reasonable gun legislation, drop-kick the GOP out of Congress. The GOP has taken power and arrogance to a disgusting level.


 +   10 people like this
Posted by Hinrich, a resident of Old Palo Alto,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 3:18 pm

Hinrich is a registered user.

I'm sure most people on this post - even those who own guns - never think of using a gun against others. Or a knife - there are knives out there too. Most guns used in mass shootings were bought legally, though not necessarily by the shooter. A lot of guns out there are illegal - stollen, smuggled or illegally transferred. Those who buy guns legally, who submit to background checks, who have legal permits often buy guns for protection. It feels safe to sleep at night in Palo Alto, for example, because the policing is so good but there are millions of people in America who live in fear including many poor and minorities in places where the police don't show up so quickly and where politicians let crooks walk free. It's not gun ownership even though that's the easiest thing to blame. We should ask - How did the shooters get their gun?. Are the young and insane getting access too easily? How many of those shot during a weekend in Chicago are shot with illegal weapons? That would be the best place to start. Finally, what exactly do people mean by the ‘gun culture' if not gangs with guns? It's not the hunters and target practice people, or those with a gun for protection. In every case, it's a nut. There is a ten year old boy in custody in FL for threatening to shoot up his school - why he wants to do that is the question, not “We must change our gun culture in America'


 +   15 people like this
Posted by Vivian Chen, a resident of Mountain View,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 5:18 pm

Vivian Chen is a registered user.

America does not have 'gun culture.' It has a gun 'problem.'

The problem is that guns always find themselves in the wrong hands.

Most law abiding gun owners have no issue or problem with registering their firearms.

On the other hand, many criminals might have an issue (or a problem) with gun registration because the procedure poses certain risks.

It does not take Kojak to arrive at this observation and conclusion.

And so the question is, what is the point of tagging responsible gun owners while the criminals run free will their illegally obtained firearms?

Resolving this 'problem' is a responsibility and mission for the people at Homeland Security and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms.

President Biden cannot rescind the 2nd Amendment nor issue an Executive Order restricting gun sales and the conservative SCOTUS will most likely issue an 'originalist' interpretation of the 2nd Amendment citing 'well-armed' as an extension of 'stare decisis' (an original court interpretation or legal precedence) regardless of any technological advancements that have taken place since the initial drafting of the Constitution.

This is good news for conservatives and bad news for liberals.






 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Raymond , a resident of Monta Loma,
on Jun 2, 2022 at 7:51 pm

Raymond is a registered user.

Less law & less policing:
More guns.
More guns,
less crime.

Where is Salvador Ramos' daddy?


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Local Resident, a resident of Community Center,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 9:31 am

Local Resident is a registered user.

The gun ownership issue has worked heavily towards the Republicans favor because too many Democrats want to take guns away from responsible, law abiding folks and lack credibility when they say otherwise. Banning or heavily limiting gun ownership just disarms law abiding democrats and a few moderate republicans in blue states. Let me know how leaving the right wing and all the criminals with all guns would work out. Especially with election stealing about to become a major issue and the current trend of rising violent crime. Democrats are just not practical with the reality. The Supreme Court is heavily conservative/republican for the next 10 years at least and this current term is likely the last time Democrats will control all the Senate / House and presidency for a long-time to come (during which time they did not secure fair voting, address immigration, global warming and also let many other issues slip through their fingers (as always)). Most folks espousing gun control have never fired a gun and do not understand gun safety. People are too quick to embrace simple solutions that don't solve this very complex and nuanced issue. I hope a new breed of practical Democratic leaders like NYC Mayor Eric Adams are the future of the Democratic Party for addressing gun violence and crime: Web Link


 +   27 people like this
Posted by Mike Florin, a resident of another community,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 9:46 am

Mike Florin is a registered user.

The recent shootings were hate crimes embedded in racism and an internalized fear of replacement theory becoming a reality.

There is no way to curtail such mindsets as people believe what they want to believe and QAnon is already promoting the notion that the Uvalde school shootings were a hoax perpetrated by the Democrats.

The current Republican Party has become the lunatic right-wing fringe of America and ALL registered Republicans are to be held equally accountable because the majority of them are doing very little to pro-actively reform the Republican Party's course of questionable actions and inactions.

The 'Party of Lincoln' and 'Reagan Republicans' no longer exists, having been replaced by a modern day version of a race-based and baited John Birch Society.

Like the former slave-supporting Whig Party, hopefully the Republican Party and its supporters will disappear from national prominence.

America does not need any of them.





 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Bystander, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 11:20 am

Bystander is a registered user.

The recent mass shooting was done by a middle aged male who was mad with his surgeon who did his recent back surgery. It seems he had called the surgeon's office and even had a follow up appointment just before the shooting. He was able to go out and buy weapons then return to the hospital and shot the surgeon, a receptionist, another patient and another doctor. A note was found on his body explaining all this.

The point of underscoring this is that this shooting was not anything other than rage against a physician.

We can get into all the debates, pointing fingers, blaming this or that ideology, but we can't really stop a crazy guy with easy access to a gun from shooting those he wants to kill.

We could have airport security at all hospitals, schools, shopping malls, etc. We could arm teachers, doctors, nurses, supermarket checkers. We could then see what happens when the police arrive and don't know who is the bad guy with a gun and who is the good guy with a gun (this recently happened at a shooting in San Jose restaurant).

Or we could do away with policing altogther and go back to the days of the Wild West.

Wait, I think we already have.


 +   12 people like this
Posted by Birk Halstrom, a resident of another community,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 11:26 am

Birk Halstrom is a registered user.

Both Democrats and Republicans share the blame for these recent shootings.

The Democrats are pushing for further background checks prior to purchasing firearms but it should be noted that the Uvalde shooter was of legal age (18) to purchase his weaponry and had no prior criminal record.

Would Republicans be helplessly throwing up their arms had the shooting been attributed to police budget cuts?

No. They would be on TV and media pointing fingers at the Democrats for defunding the police.

Both Democrats and Republicans use tragedy to promote their political agendas.

There are no good guys and bad guys in Congress...they are all the same.




 +   22 people like this
Posted by Penny Long, a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 12:07 pm

Penny Long is a registered user.

"The 'Party of Lincoln' and 'Reagan Republicans' no longer exists,"

The Republican Party has become a party representative of undereducated, reactionary, white working class people who believe America is slipping away from them due to immigration and the loss of personal freedom pertaining to the 2nd Amendment.

Bigotry and racism are trademarks of the 'new' Republican Party and it is unfathomable to support such a platform.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Duveneck neighbor, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 2:30 pm

Duveneck neighbor is a registered user.

The reflexive, illogical, false opinions and narratives from those in favor of maintaining the status quo -- and, indeed, increasing the number of people who own guns and wear them publicly -- continues to astound me. (For instance, one poster claims there is a correlation between amount of crime, and severity of legal gun restrictions -- which is totally false.)

It is human to fear. Whether or not one's fear is reasonable, is the first question to ask oneself. And nearly every person who owns a gun, to 'solve' their fear, hasn't asked the question. They've let the NRA, and the gun lobby, create and amplify the narrative. And they've bought the story, which is fiction.

But let's say one has good reason to fear for one's personal safety, and the safety of one's property. The second question then to ask is: is there a better way than a gun to solve that fear?

And here, we have no alternatives. The narrative is wholly-owned by the GOP, the gun lobby, the NRA. And people buy into this narrative.

Guns are expensive: licensing, training, maintenance, ammunition all cost more, than would the cost of surveillance and other protections while one is at-home. If, that is, one is a responsible gun owner. I submit, most gun owners don't keep their weapons clean, their training and licensing current, their weapons secure. And that's irresponsible.

Guns are lethal. They amplify malicious human intent, and accidental human action. Speed of response of the weapon is amplified, as are reach of the weapon, and the number of humans placed at risk. This is untrue of a knife, or a baseball bat. Those who try to blame 'bad actors', must think on these truths; and, if they're perceived fairly, the the falsehood of this argument will be known.

Guns create massive collateral damage.

And, personal guns don't 'protect' against 'government overreach': another false narrative.

Bottom line: Americans will use any rationalization in order to get their gun fix. We are evil.


 +   20 people like this
Posted by Phil Kendricks, a resident of Adobe-Meadow,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 3:36 pm

Phil Kendricks is a registered user.

"...let's say one has good reason to fear for one's personal safety, and the safety of one's property. The second question then to ask is: is there a better way than a gun to solve that fear?"

Yes. You try to rationally talk things out with a crazed gunman or robber, taking into full consideration their misguided mindsets and troubled background.

Victims need to show more compassion and empathy towards their attackers and potential killers even if things turn out badly.

Seriously?


 +   10 people like this
Posted by Laurie Jacobs, a resident of Menlo Park,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 4:28 pm

Laurie Jacobs is a registered user.

> let's say one has good reason to fear for one's personal safety, and the safety of one's property. The second question then to ask is: is there a better way than a gun to solve that fear?

Uh...you call the cops and they fill out a report pertaining to the incident?

I'm from Idaho and open carry is a practical deterrent to being assaulted or robbed.

Open carry is not lax law. If you shoot someone while intoxicated or in the back, you go to prison regardless of the circumstances that gave rise to the altercation.

Assailants deserve no mercy.


 +   14 people like this
Posted by Alan West, a resident of Blossom Valley,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 4:57 pm

Alan West is a registered user.

°let's say one has good reason to fear for one's personal safety, and the safety of one's property. The second question then to ask is: is there a better way than a gun to solve that fear?

Through meditation, aroma therapy, or a vegan diet?

If someone is threatening or shooting at you, you return fire (if armed). Ask any combat veteran or law enforcement officer.

Civilians also have a right to protect themselves and to prevent further bloodshed.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by PH, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 7:13 pm

PH is a registered user.

Don't here express an opinion on this but I do submit that there had been a difference of opinion about the meaning of the 2nd amendment until Heller.

Web Link

"For more than 200 years following the adoption of that amendment, federal judges uniformly understood that the right protected by that text was limited in two ways: First, it applied only to keeping and bearing arms for military purposes, and second, while it limited the power of the federal government, it did not impose any limit whatsoever on the power of states or local governments to regulate the ownership or use of firearms. Thus, in United States v. Miller, decided in 1939, the court unanimously held that Congress could prohibit the possession of a sawed-off shotgun because that sort of weapon had no reasonable relation to the preservation or efficiency of a “well regulated Militia."


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Duveneck neighbor, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 8:27 pm

Duveneck neighbor is a registered user.

@Phil Kendricks
@Laurie Jacobs
@Alan West

The 'arguments' of these three individuals, are precisely what I was talking about in my previous post.

These individuals failed to read what I wrote, and failed to write a logical rebuttal.

Mr Kendricks employs the 'straw man fallacy'. See: Web Link (As an aside to the Editor: you ought to remove logical fallacies from Comment threads. Do you have the audacity to do so?) No one talked about 'talking with a crazed gunman or robber'. I merely asked: is it reasonable, IN OUR COMMUNITY, to assume a crazed gunman or robber will attack one, either in public or in the confines of one's home? LOOK AT THE STATISTICS. One is more likely to be attacked in one's home, or in public, by the Palo Alto Police over the past ten years, than by an actual robber or 'crazed gunman'. Mr Kendrick's assumption is false; his argument is a straw man.

Ms Jacobs employs the non sequitur fallacy. She cites Idaho. This is Palo Alto, California; it's not even Menlo Park. Moreover, the implicit assumption (followed by Idaho) -- that a reversion to Wild West 'law', where the law *was* the gun, is the correct way to go in these times -- does not pertain. It is a non sequitur. Again, the Editor would do well to simply refuse to print comments which employ illogic.

Mr West lives in Blossom Valley, even farther away; one wonders which NRA bulletin board he subscribes to, which alerted him to a flaring 'controversy' in Palo Alto threatening unfettered access to, and deployment of, guns -- his response, in other words, mimics that of any dog-whistle response. And I mean that statement with every once of pejorative import I can muster.

But, let's take Mr West's comment as if he is a resident. Mr West employs the same false assumption, the same straw man fallacy, as Mr Kendricks. QED.

I say again: a gun NEED NOT BE THE ANSWER to one's fear of harm, at home or in public.

Imagine a different world, friends.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Duveneck neighbor, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis,
on Jun 3, 2022 at 8:41 pm

Duveneck neighbor is a registered user.

@Alan West

I don't meditate, use aroma therapy, or follow a vegan diet.

Your comment on that score, was intended to be a pejorative dismissal. It is, instead, a non sequitur, with an additional, implied straw man fallacy.

Whether I do, or do not, meditate; whether I do, or not, use aroma therapy; whether I do, or do not, follow a vegan diet; is immaterial to the questions which each of us must ask:

What do I fear?
Is my fear reasonable?
If my fear is reasonable, how do I manage my fear?
Is a gun --the licensing, possession, training, maintenance, security of it -- the answer to my fear?
Are there other means than a gun, which solve my fear/minimize my fear, while reducing dramatically the real possibility of collateral damage, of misuse, of accidental use?
And, if the answer remains 'yes' -- maybe I'm better off moving altogether, than living in a place where the ONLY solution to my fear, is a gun -- and all the attendant negative consequences.

Please note:

I am not talking about ownership of a gun for hunting purposes. Please be responsible, lock up the gun and the ammunition, to protect your loved ones.

I am not talking about ownership of a gun for collection purposes. Again, be responsible and safe.

I am not talking about ownership of a gun for sport shooting purposes. (Although, IMO you'd be better off just renting a gun for that purpose.)

I am, however, talking about ownership of a gun for purposes of protecting one's self, and one's property. I suggest strongly, there are BETTER AND SAFER AND LESS EXPENSIVE means to do so.

And, I am NOT talking about ownership of a gun as a protection against government overreach. No collection of private gun owners -- not even a quasi 'militia' -- will have the wherewithal to stand against the US military, even the militarized US police. And don't fool yourselves, that the Army will come over to 'your side'.

The only protection against government overreach, is the right to vote. Period.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Hinrich, a resident of Old Palo Alto,
on Jun 4, 2022 at 7:06 am

Hinrich is a registered user.

Two points. 1. 60% of adults and a whopping 80% of young people say they are lonely according to a recent survey. Screen time has not proved an effective replacement for getting out there in real social activities. Online is fake, empty time - mostly. Shutting down the economy and forcing people to isolate was a monumental mistake. 2. We all remember that CA jails and prisons were so over-crowded that the courts ordered relief and we remember officials complaining how incarceration was weighing on budgets. What did governments do? They let them out - a trickle at first, huge numbers now. Letting them out of prison was described as ‘social justice', blah, blah, etc. the State can use the savings to push Green and equity and whatnot. Only the State Appellate court's recent ruling forcing Gascone to actually charge three strikes - instead of ignoring the crimes on our streets - reminds our officials to do what they are supposed to do, protect us. Remember, there are people out there who are actually opening up the jails, tossing laws designed to protect, de-funding police, ‘re-imagining' enforcement, and generally making life out there a whole lot more dangerous. And now, they want your guns.


 +   20 people like this
Posted by Michael Lambert, a resident of Downtown North,
on Jun 4, 2022 at 7:43 am

Michael Lambert is a registered user.

In response to Duveneck neighbor...

"One is more likely to be attacked in one's home, or in public, by the Palo Alto Police over the past ten years, than by an actual robber or 'crazed gunman'."

^ How reassuring...your comment does not speak highly of the PAPD.

So who ya' gonna call...Ghostbusters?

"Are there other means than a gun, which solve my fear/minimize my fear, while reducing dramatically the real possibility of collateral damage, of misuse, of accidental use?"

^ Yes...perhaps a vicious attack dog or a personal bodyguard?

The Native Americans once relied on bows & arrows but to reduce their apprehensions of America's westward expansion many of them switched over to Winchesters to calm their fears.

Rest assured as I get your drift (sort of). A world without guns would be a far more enjoyable and safer place to live.

Perhaps we could switch to using words as weapons instead of bullets but that would open the door for slander, libel, and defamation of character lawsuits OR worse yet, further constraints implemented by the PC police.


 +   18 people like this
Posted by Jerry Donnelly, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 4, 2022 at 7:57 am

Jerry Donnelly is a registered user.

* I merely asked: is it reasonable, IN OUR COMMUNITY, to assume a crazed gunman or robber will attack one, either in public or in the confines of one's home?

It appears that 'Duveneck neighbor' has not been reading the Palo Alto Online's reportage of recent crimes in Palo Alto.

Then again, maybe the perpetrators were not crazed or dangerous but merely going about their regular occupations.


 +   12 people like this
Posted by Judy Carroll, a resident of Cuesta Park,
on Jun 4, 2022 at 8:10 am

Judy Carroll is a registered user.

> The only protection against government overreach, is the right to vote. Period.

If such is the case, then why don't our elected officials (on local, state, and national levels) reflect the true wishes and concerns of the 'voters?'

Politicians are not the voice of the public. Most are opportunists and narcissists.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Stewart Jeffries, a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive,
on Jun 4, 2022 at 8:31 am

Stewart Jeffries is a registered user.

Duvenevk neighbor writes:

What do I fear?
Is my fear reasonable?
If my fear is reasonable, how do I manage my fear?
Is a gun --the licensing, possession, training, maintenance, security of it -- the answer to my fear?

Gun ownership is obviously not the answer for everyone.

My personal fear is not having enough money for family expenditures and retirement.

And I imagine that there are some 'crazed' gunmen and 'robbers' who also feel the same way.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Malvina Johnston, a resident of Mountain View,
on Jun 4, 2022 at 9:41 am

Malvina Johnston is a registered user.

Only nice people with good intentions should be allowed to own firearms in America.


 +   7 people like this
Posted by Marissa Fontaine, a resident of Los Altos Hills,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 7:51 am

Marissa Fontaine is a registered user.

In a nutshell, it is all about lack of trust and unity.

Americans cannot trust that our kids will go to school without being shot.

We cannot trust people to wear facemasks during a pandemic, because so many insist they have a right to infect others.

We cannot pass sensible gun-safety laws because some people passionately believe they need weapons of war to defend themselves against government tyranny.

Many Americans no longer trust organized religion, corporations, capitalism, their employers, or the media.

We do not share a common set of facts and values. Many people have retreated into their own private world of websites, social media feeds, cable networks, and communities.

Separated by walls of tribal loyalties, we cannot come together to solve our problems even when they are killing us.

Game over.


 +   10 people like this
Posted by Bob Bouchette, a resident of Southgate,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 8:08 am

Bob Bouchette is a registered user.

@Marissa Fontaine

In addition, we cannot trust our local police department or legislative representatives to be straightforward.


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Posted by Dottie Walensky, a resident of Old Mountain View,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 8:30 am

Dottie Walensky is a registered user.

This is such a horrible time to be alive given the lingering pandemic and recent shootings.

My condolences to the younger generations who will inherit this toxically polluted, violent, highly devisive, and pathogen-laden country.

Blame the geriatric and short-sighted members of Congress who are out of touch with the modern world.


 +   13 people like this
Posted by Ashley Tate, a resident of Stanford,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 9:14 am

Ashley Tate is a registered user.

"Blame the geriatric and short-sighted members of Congress who are out of touch with the modern world."

It is time for all legislators and judges over 65 to gracefully retire and leave the key decision making responsibilities to those younger in years.

Term and age limits should be mandatory for all public office holders including members of the United States Supreme Court.

We do not need dinosaurs dictating the future of America.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by John Donegan, a resident of another community,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 10:54 am

John Donegan is a registered user.

Ashley Tate demands that we older people ("dinosauers") be culled from the policy making process. Is this wise, in view of the impulsiveness and proclivity for violence of the young? Look at the riots of the last couple of years, or at mob violence generally (including lynch mobs) and you will see a dearth of us geezers and see predominantly young faces. Almost all of the mass shooters have been young, and child soldiers are popular in insurgencies due to their lack of empathy and eargerness to commit attrocities in the name of whatever ideology has their interest at the moment. Perhaps society needs thoughtful people who take a longer view and who are not so emotionally reactive.


 +   8 people like this
Posted by Lucas Warner, a resident of Stanford,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 11:08 am

Lucas Warner is a registered user.

"Perhaps society needs thoughtful people who take a longer view and who are not so emotionally reactive."

'Thoughtful' as in Clarence Thomas, Donald Trump, Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein, Chuck Grassley, Mitch McConnell and a host of other out of touch 'dinosaurs' currently running the show?

Countless Millennials beg to differ.


 +   10 people like this
Posted by Carole Langley, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 11:28 am

Carole Langley is a registered user.

Thoughts and prayers for those who were ruthlessly gunned down in these recent shootings.

If more law-abiding citizens were allowed 'open carry', perhaps some of these senseless tragedies might have been averted.

There should be no shame or guilt on the part of an honorable civilian taking out a 'crazed' gunman who is intent on harming others for no apparent reason.

The police are oftentimes late (or slow) to arrive as in the Uvalde incident, and it is our duty as parents and teachers to protect our children whatever the cost whether it involves using sticks, stones, or a licensed handgun.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Bruce Petrie, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 11:49 am

Bruce Petrie is a registered user.

Had an armed & vigilant teacher or school administrator gunned Salvador Ramos down prior to his senseless shootings, they would have been hailed as a national hero and maybe even a recipient of a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

And the same applies to someone taking out shooter Payton Gendron in Buffalo. The African American community would have praised the individual who saved the lives of innocent victims.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Jennifer, a resident of another community,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 12:00 pm

Jennifer is a registered user.

"If more law-abiding citizens were allowed open carry, perhaps some of these senseless tragedies might have been adverted."

Or have your own guns(s) used against you. Ask the family of the deceased grandfather in Texas who was shot and killed with his own AR-15, along with his four grandsons. The escaped murderer knew that any given home in Texas would be armed, so he shot and killed five family members and stole their truck.

A gun in your own home makes you less safe. Statistics show you're more likely to use it on a family member or yourself than shoot an intruder.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Harley Smith, a resident of another community,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 12:09 pm

Harley Smith is a registered user.

@Jennifer

Had the grandfather been packing heat as a sidearm this unfortunate event might have been avoided.

His grandsons should have also been armed.

When it comes to violent intruders on one's private property, a shoot first, ask questions later perspective applies.

And since the assailant was an escaped convict, had he been gunned down no loss to society.


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Posted by Jennifer, a resident of another community,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 1:49 pm

Jennifer is a registered user.

His grandsons were young kids. If you think arming four young kids is the answer, you're not in another community. You're living on another planet.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Chuck Griffin, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 2:39 pm

Chuck Griffin is a registered user.

"His grandsons were young kids."

@Jennifer

Note the ages of the victims. By 12 years of age, I already knew how to handle a 30.06 deer rifle and a 9mm handgun safely.

Then again, I grew up in rural West Virginia but I imagine a sizable number of guns are prevalent in Texas as well.

> Mark Collins, 66; Waylon Collins, 18; Carson Collins, 16; Hudson Collins, 11; and Bryson Collins, 11 were allegedly slain by Gonzalo Lopez " who who was serving a life sentence for killing a man but had been on the lam since hijacking a prison bus in mid-May.

In many ways, first aid & CPR, the ability to swim, driver training, and firearm safety/marksmanship should be mandatory requirements for high school graduation.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Rachel Jackson, a resident of St. Francis Acres,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 3:28 pm

Rachel Jackson is a registered user.

• Only nice people with good intentions should be allowed to own firearms in America.

That would eliminate 75-90% of the gun-owning, gun toting population in the United States (including the police and seasonal hunters) with the exception of those who keep firearms to defend themselves and their immediate families from eminent danger.

This would be a step in the right direction providing illegal firearms can be kept out of the hands of wayward criminals and the mentally unstable.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Jennifer, a resident of another community,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 5:16 pm

Jennifer is a registered user.

Knowing how to shoot a gun at a young age because you grew up in a rural area is one thing. Walking around with a loaded weapon as a kid is another. If someone gets a hold of your AR-15, you're done. Do you really think gun owners (including their children or grandchildren visiting) walk around their own home with a loaded weapon on them 24/7/365? Get real.

A gun in your own home makes you less safe. Period. Statistics don't lie.

If you choose to own a gun, there are consequences.




 +   2 people like this
Posted by MyFeelz, a resident of Juana Briones School,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 6:04 pm

MyFeelz is a registered user.

I'm worried that we're becoming so de-sensitized to stories about mass shootings in this country that we are no longer shocked and even worse, we are no longer surprised when it happens.

I'm worried that the next generation, who has inherited this mess we call an "experiment", has no incentive to "do better".

This is what we are showing as their regular normal. This isn't new normal for kids. This is their every day regular experience. Security checks at the front door of the school. "ACTIVE SHOOTER" drills. Mourning the loss of schoolmates and teachers. "Thoughts and prayers" mantras that have become meaningless.

The history books, if they're accurate, show this country has a well-trodden path to "civil rights" that took a long time in coming, and now they are eroding. The meaning of the 2nd amendment has become perverted. It was never supposed to put automatic weapons in the hands of maniacs. It was supposed to allow for the defense of freedom. Meanwhile, government overreach clings against our rights like an octopus, and people are buying guns. Where were all the 2nd Amendment cheerleaders during the recent mass shooting at an elementary school?

Shouldn't they have been there, defending the freedom of those children and teachers who lost their lives for no reason other than an 18 year old mentally ill person used his 2nd Amendment right to purchase guns and ammo? Why are we excusing this?

I am front and center in the life of a first grader. I don't know what to say to her. I can turn off the TV. But her friends at school are talking about these issues. What am I supposed to tell her when she says she is afraid to go to school because she could get shot? I can't tell her it's not going to happen, because right now some mentally ill person is buying guns and ammo and could be targeting her school. School's out, and crazy people are stocking up before they lose access to automatic weapons and come next fall ... ugh.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by MyFeelz, a resident of another community,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 6:14 pm

MyFeelz is a registered user.

Harley, regarding your "a shoot first, ask questions later perspective applies" -- that's what brought us the deaths of Trayvon Martin, ad infinitum. Here in the United States, we have a justice system that presumes innocence until proven guilty. Homeowners do not have the right to "shoot first, ask questions later". You're just more part of the problem instead of part of the solution. The Texas prison transport department is responsible for the deaths perpetrated by the escaped prisoner. It's been reported he got his weapon from the people he killed. So much for 2nd amendment rights, eh? What did that family do wrong? They had TWO GUNS. Up against an unarmed fleeing prisoner, it seems like they should have had the upper hand. What could possibly have gone wrong?


 +   3 people like this
Posted by MyFeelz, a resident of another community,
on Jun 5, 2022 at 6:17 pm

MyFeelz is a registered user.

Bruce, with so many card carrying NRA members in any given neighborhood, both the Buffalo and Uvalde shootings should have been prevented by upstanding citizens who claim to be part of a well-armed militia, tasked with protecting society against stuff like that. WHAT WENT WRONG???


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Myles Riverton, a resident of another community,
on Jun 6, 2022 at 7:46 am

Myles Riverton is a registered user.

As an animal control officer I am fortunate in that I am legally permitted to carry both a handgun and a high-powered rifle that can fire multiple tranquilizer darts designed to subdue large animals.

These darts (depending on tranquilizer load) are powerful enough to take down a grizzly bear and I imagine they would also work quite effectively in neutralizing anti-social humans (though I have never tried it or been in a situation that warrants such usage).

Perhaps this approach is the best self-defense measure as the impact of the sedative darts is only temporary.

Then again it is unclear whether a potent tranq load designed to stop a 800+ pound animal would be safe to use on humans.

In any event and in the event of an active shooter crisis, perhaps this concern is irrelevant.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Lonnie McIntire, a resident of Portola Valley,
on Jun 6, 2022 at 8:03 am

Lonnie McIntire is a registered user.

Those tranquilizer weapons (especially the handgun) are larger than conventional firearms and might pose an encumbrance in terms of portability and ease of carry.

On the other hand, they are quite effective and fast acting. When we were in Kenya, we watched the game wardens shoot and sedate lions with tranquilizer guns for eventual transport to other areas of the game reserve.

I think it would be far easier just to carry a fully charged taser gun as this measure should easily pacify the anti-gun advocates.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Herb Bannon, a resident of Menlo Park,
on Jun 6, 2022 at 9:04 am

Herb Bannon is a registered user.

Tranquilizer darts and tasers are not practical answers to controlling gun violence.

Tranqs are loaded with sedative pharmaceuticals and not everyone has access to the key ingredients. They also take 2-3 minutes to fully kick-in and a lot of bad things can happen until they do.
Web Link

Tasers only work within close proximity and just how close do you want to get to an active shooter?

The only resolve is to try and avoid these kinds of harrowing situations or be fully armed with a conventional firearm to return fire.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by eileen , a resident of College Terrace,
on Jun 6, 2022 at 9:57 am

eileen is a registered user.

There is something in the American culture that is creating; alienated, angry, violent, young men. Is it the Media, constant violent content in gaming and movies, social media, winners and losers, stressful home life, drugs, or the right vs left mentality? We are destroying ourselves within. EXCEPT, there is also so much love and good all around us too! Guns are just part of the problem! Yes, try and pass some kind of gun reform. At least it is a step toward change but there is so much more to do....


 +   8 people like this
Posted by Barry Fosse, a resident of Castro City,
on Jun 6, 2022 at 10:03 am

Barry Fosse is a registered user.

Restrictive gun legislation will take a long time to implement as there are many obstacles.

In the meantime other preventative measures are warranted in order to prevent future casualties from random shooters.

Armed security guards should be positioned at ALL shopping centers, schools, and places of worship.

The PTA could also get involved via parents who are licensed gun owners volunteering their time as security guards and churchgoers could easily do the same.

That leaves shopping centers and strip malls for either armed security guards or the police to protect.

Workplace violence is another area of concern and preventative measures would rest with the employer by enlisting armed security to monitor the premises.

The key is to prevent any future shootings through any means possible.

We cannot count on politicians to legislate and protect our loved ones.

We are rapidly approaching a time when the likes of a Charles Bronson vigilante character actually begins to make some sense...sadly.


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Posted by Bystander, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood,
on Jun 6, 2022 at 11:20 am

Bystander is a registered user.

To those who wish to turn our society into marshall law, you may have a point!

Personally though, I'm not sure I want to live with armed guards everywhere. Is this where we are heading? Does freedom mean that we live in a state of fear? Airport type security, bag and backpack searches becoming commonplace usually happens in war torn regions of the world. Is this really what America has to become?


 +   2 people like this
Posted by staying home, a resident of Crescent Park,
on Jun 6, 2022 at 11:50 am

staying home is a registered user.

Not sure why we can't regulate the same way we do cars (or boats). Obviously guns and cars are not equivalent, but the concepts of regulation for the safe operation is transferable:
-license required to operate
-proof of insurance to operate
-training/testing to get a license
-regulation of what and how you can operate
-periodic renewal of license


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Posted by Molly Patterson, a resident of Menlo Park,
on Jun 6, 2022 at 2:35 pm

Molly Patterson is a registered user.

"Does freedom mean that we live in a state of fear?"

We should remain vigilant but not overcome by fear. Instilling fear is what America's enemies want to do and we are not going to give them the satisfaction.


"Airport type security, bag and backpack searches becoming commonplace usually happens in war torn regions of the world. Is this really what America has to become?"

Added security measures at airports, courtrooms, and ballparks began immediately after 9/11.

Ensuring America's safety from firearms capable of mass killing will require intervention from the Department of Homeland Security.

We cannot rely on our politicians do do anything pro-active.

Both parties are masters of lip service.


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Posted by Millicent Peters, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jun 7, 2022 at 11:17 am

Millicent Peters is a registered user.

The Uvalde incident among others could have been minimalized had the Uvalse police responded in a timely manner.

Investigation into this most recent school shooting has confirmed that the Uvalde police did NOTHING for over an hour while innocent schoolchildren and their teachers were being slaughtered by a wayward gunman.

Cowardly or extreme caution?

Arming teachers, school administrators, and PTA volunteers OR enlisting paid security guards on campus can reduce these tragedies.

We cannot rely on the police to pro-actively intervene in these matters.

In a 2005 Supreme Court case, a woman sued the police for not adequately responding when her estranged husband kidnapped and murdered her three children. A 7-2 decision authored by Justice Antonin Scalia found that Americans have no "entitlement" to receive protective services.

That said, perhaps it is time for parents to step up and to take up arms to protect their innocent children from random shooters.

The local police, our Congressional members, and the POTUS are toothless advocates of gun control.




 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Mike Kelly, a resident of Blossom Valley,
on Jun 7, 2022 at 11:35 am

Mike Kelly is a registered user.

Enough is enough. America cannot control the ownership of illegal firearms and it is time for legal gun owners to ensure the survival of themselves and their families with discretionary return firepower.

A society that restricts legal firearms or one that relies solely on timely police intervention to protect its citizenry is barking up the wrong alley.

Repeat violent criminals and deranged shooters need to be taken out regardless of who handles it.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Annette, a resident of College Terrace,
on Jun 7, 2022 at 4:47 pm

Annette is a registered user.

No wonder Congress cannot make any reasonable progress on this issue. Sadly, our polarized positions on this issue means that we are willing to sacrifice more lives of innocent people simply going about their daily lives, including precious children who innately rely on adults to keep them safe. That is pathetic.


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Posted by Richt, a resident of Rex Manor,
on Jun 26, 2022 at 9:59 pm

Richt is a registered user.

staying home wrote:
"Not sure why we can't regulate [guns] the same way we do cars"

That would be fantastic for gun-owners, but I don't think you understand the car laws.

If guns were regulated like cars, then anyone at any age, even known criminals, could own any type of firearms in any numbers without limits. And no paperwork and no government registration would be required. No government background checks and no waiting periods, no permission of any sort to own any guns. Also, anyone could legally "operate" a gun while drunk as long as they operated on private property. Same for driving at any speed you like on private property. And drive at any age. You could even drive while being blind.

Governmental regulations only come into effect if you wanted to "operate" your gun in public places. Also, if guns were regulated like cars, anyone could get a "learners permit" at age 16 to carry a gun in public places with some extra restrictions. Once a person reached 18, then they would have to pass a test and then they WOULD be issued a Concealed Carry License even if the local cops did not like you.

So, you still want guns to be regulated like cars?

"the concepts of regulation for the safe operation is transferable:
-license required to operate
-proof of insurance to operate
-training/testing to get a license
-regulation of what and how you can operate
-periodic renewal of license"

These requirements only applies to "operate" in public places. If you put your car on a trailer and take it down to a racetrack, you may drive it legally without any license as long as the property owner says it's OK. Lawful gun-owners use up over 8 Billion rounds of ammo every year in the US for recreational target shooting alone.

I can't tell you how many people have made this "car regulations" wish with not the slightest idea what they are asking for!


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Posted by Richt, a resident of Rex Manor,
on Jun 26, 2022 at 11:14 pm

Richt is a registered user.

Dear Diana Diamond, your cost/benefit equation is missing many critical facts.
The fact that:
Tens of millions of ordinary citizens lawfully carry concealed handguns.
Since 1991 40+ states have legalized CCW.
Vastly more Americans use guns lawfully in defensive situations than in all crimes and accidents and even suicides totaled each year (you can also add all car crash deaths too).
Americans lawfully & safely fire over 8 Billion rounds of ammo each year for target-shooting.
No "prohibition" or "regulation laws" have ever prevented criminals from obtaining anything they want.
Diana, Look at the history of "Alcohol Prohibition" and the "War on Drugs".
Those efforts always result in making the object of prohibition MORE popular not less common.

The AR-15 became the most widely-owned type of gun in the US as a direct result of the 1994 "Assault Weapons Ban". Gun Control laws only make more first-time gun-owners.

Something like 80% of cops never even pull out there guns in the line of duty in their entire careers. The percentage of cops who actually shoot anyone to death, way way under 1%.

So, if cops so rarely fire their guns then why take the risk of allowing cops to carry guns?

Because 99.9% of the time just having a gun will save a life by stopping an aggressor being aggressive.

Yes, we need to change the CURRENT gun-culture of ignorance to RETURN to the gun-culture of understanding that guns are just tools.
What matters is how they get used.

Never blame the hammer for the fact you smashed your thumb.


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