Monday, January 02, 2012

Here it comes, folks

Mount Rainier shooting opens door for agenda pandering
, Seattle Gun Rights Examiner

Four people shot in Skyway and hours later, the same “person of interest” is allegedly involved in the slaying of a Mount Rainier National Park ranger, and in the aftermath, a debate is erupting over a 2010 law that allowed private citizens to carry loaded firearms in national parks in accordance with the laws of the state in which the park is located.
Congress lifted a ban on carrying loaded guns in national parks in February 2010 amid warnings by critics that the action would lead to gun violence and poaching.—Seattle Times
KING 5 morning anchor Joyce Taylor also tried to make a connection between this case and the City of Seattle’s court battle to overturn Washington State’s preemption law, allowing the city to ban firearms in city park facilities. She continued mentioning the Seattle case as the news switched over to KONG later in the morning.

As this column reported, attorneys for the Second Amendment Foundation and National Rifle Association, two other gun rights groups and five plaintiffs have filed a response to Seattle’s request for Supreme Court review of its case. That case, regardless what KING and Taylor might think, has nothing to do with the Mount Rainier shooting or the Skyway incident, in which a man identified as Benjamin Colton Barnes, 24, appears to be the only suspect. A car abandoned at Mount Rainier’s murder scene is registered to Barnes.
Pierce County Sheriff's spokesman Ed Troyer said that Benjamin Colton Barnes, a 24-year-old believed to have survivalist skills, was a "strong person of interest" in the slaying.—Seattle
The slaying of Ranger Margaret Anderson on New Year’s Day has left her family, colleagues, friends and Eatonville neighbors in shock. Her killer, at this writing, is on foot somewhere in the park, and is believed to be heavily armed. The incident has launched a gun law debate among Seattle Times readers, and it is also being discussed on a popular hiking forum, and the Northwest Firearms forum. There is some interesting rhetoric.
Barnes is reportedly an Iraq war veteran, with possible PTSD issues. Tens of thousands of war veterans have the same issues, but none of them killed anyone over the weekend.
No, but a law requiring sufficient time for background checks, including gun shows, before purchasing the types of weapons in his possession may have been able to restrict his ability to obtain them.—stb2, Seattle Times
For that matter, gun rights activists are quick to note that millions of American citizens own semiautomatic firearms — the so-called “assault weapons” that gun control proponents want banned — and those citizens have harmed nobody, either.
A single individual appears to be responsible for both incidents. The federal law, signed by President Barack Obama in 2009, was in reaction to concerns by firearms advocates that crossing into a national park should not automatically suspend someone’s right of self-defense, nor the Second Amendment, which the Supreme Court has twice in recent years affirmed an individual right to keep and bear arms.
There is NO legitimate hunting or self defense reason for a civilian to own the kind of guns he had in that photo, all the more so for a mentally and emotionally unstable person with PTSD.
The rabid gun lovers are against any kind of regulation that might have at least had a chance to prevent someone like this from owning these kind of weapons.
Other countries with better regulations do not have nearly the rate of gun deaths that we do, which is one of the highest in the world.—syrinx, Seattle Times
Since then, untold numbers of citizens have carried firearms in national parks without incident. That a suspect wanted for an earlier shooting some 75 miles away in another county might be involved in a gun battle with police — even in a national park — should not really surprise people. Recall the case of Maurice Clemmons, the convicted felon who murdered four Lakewood police officers in Parkland two years ago. He was killed two days later in a confrontation with a Seattle police officer some 40 miles away.
Gun laws prohibiting convicted felons from possessing firearms, and laws forbidding homicide, did not stop Clemmons. It’s against the law already to open fire on police officers, but that did not prevent Anderson’s slaying.
In America, gun laws mostly ensure that law abiders are restricted in accessing weapons that could be used for self defense and that criminals have an easier time of committing crimes against law abiders.
I see no law that would have stopped this miscreant from accessing firearms and shooting people. On the contrary, he apparently only stopped shooting people at the Skyway scene when someone began shooting back.—Snowdogs reincarnation, Seattle Times
The law allowing citizens to be armed in national parks is not at fault, as this drama began hours earlier and miles away. Indeed, one might argue that it was because of just this type of incident — an armed gunman loose in a national park — that the law was passed. If there was no such law, and loaded firearms were still prohibited in national parks, does anyone seriously believe that would have prevented Sunday’s confrontation?
Watch for this case to become a launch pad for efforts to repeal the national parks gun law, and for a laundry list of other gun prohibition lobby agenda items with the State Legislature preparing to convene in Olympia.


Cheesy said...

"Other countries with better regulations do not have nearly the rate of gun deaths that we do, which is one of the highest in the world.—syrinx, Seattle Times"

Right. In those countries, murder of civilians is a privilege reserved by their government.

wirecutter said...

Gee, Mexico has some serious gun laws and they have more murders per capita than the US.