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Lawmakers Silent on Gun Control in Wake of Newtown Shootings, But the Public is Not

Thousands have taken to Facebook and other sites to decry what they say is a lack of gun control in this country and are urging lawmakers to take up the issue now. The NRA, meanwhile, has reportedly taken down its Facebook page.

 

The gun Adam Lanza used to kill 26 people Friday, including 20 children at Sandy Hook Elementary School, was a Bushmaster .223 rifle, a weapon favored by hunters and the military, published reports say, and apparently not a weapon intended for self defense. The gun, along with two other assault weapons that Lanza used, were registered to Lanza’s mother, the Hartford Courant reports.  

That a 20-year-old had access to those guns, and used them with such lethal consequences, is again spurring a debate on gun control, with some saying the Newtown shootings could provide the tipping point to the U.S adopting tougher gun controls.

And while pundits, media outlets and the general public worldwide are starting to weigh-in on the touchy subject of U.S. gun control in the wake of the shootings, lawmakers and gun lobbyists are not.

Officials for Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal today did not return a request for comment on the issue of whether the shootings in Newtown should renew debate on gun control.

On a Facebook posting Blumenthal offered his condolences to the victims’ families. Several of those responding to the posting urged him to push for stricter gun controls as well.

“Senator … what the vast majority of CT and US citizens want to see from you is ACTION. You should introduce strict, comprehensive, national gun control legislation and drive it in the new year,” one commenter said.

A spokesman for Fifth District Congressman and Senator-elect Chris Murphy, whose district includes Newtown, also did not return a request for comment on the mounting calls for gun control.

“With families & first responders again in Newtown today. There just aren't words to convey the grief felt here. Newtown is in our thoughts,” Murphy wrote yesterday on his Facebook page. The posting, and an earlier one from Murphy, saw an overwhelming response from commenters calling for gun control.

“Senator Elect Murphy: Enough is enough!!! We will be looking to you to play an active, leadership role in the Senate to begin to bring some sanity back to Gun Control laws in our Country,” one commenter posted.

The National Rifle Association’s website on Sunday afternoon remained silent on Friday’s rampage.  The NRA’s Facebook page, in addition, was removed sometime after the tragedy, the Daily News reports. However, before it was taken down hundreds had already posted to it including one who said: “…Beautiful little children gunned down because of the NRA fighting against every single sensible gun control and gun safety law. The NRA has blood on its hands.”

Besides the now unimaginable reputation as being the site of one of the worst school killings in our country’s history, Newtown is also home to the National Shooting Sports Foundation. The organization, located at 11 Mile Hill Road, posted a statement on its website Friday saying it doesn’t want to comment on the shootings that happened less than three miles away.

“Our hearts go out to the families of the victims of this horrible tragedy in our community,” the statement says. “Out of respect for the families, the community and the ongoing police investigation, it would be inappropriate to comment or participate in media requests at this time.” The group’s Facebook page is silent on the tragedy.

Elizabeth Esty, who takes office next month as the representative from the Fifth Congressional District, also posted a note of condolence on her Facebook page, a posting that also gave rise to a comments debate on gun control.

“We will be there to support our grieving neighbors then we will campaign for national gun control,” said one person who responded to Esty posting.

According to published reports, besides the Bushmaster rifle, Lanza also carried with him into the school two handguns, a Glock 9mm pistol and a SIG sauer handgun, weapons also favored by police and the military. All were registered to his mother, the Hartford Courant reports.

Lobsang Tenzin December 17, 2012 at 05:03 PM
This article is an example of utter ignorance about guns and America. Any decision made in anger or fear is an uneducated one. See Germany 1933. I still have no idea how people can claim that a psychotic murderer will obey "Gun Control Laws". When the shootings occurred at the Lottery office a knee jerk reactionary law was passed outlawing the carry of concealed weapons into any state building. I mean really think Is a crazed gunman who will ALWAYS be able to get an illegal high capacity rifle by illegal methods, just as the shooter at Newtown did, will say, "Oh darn I really was going to go on a murderous rampage today but there's that law against me bringing the guns I want to use to kill people into that building....oh well guess I'll just go home." Is that what's going to go through his head to stop him? In Watts alone in Los Angles, more young black men have been killed by illegal weapons than all the deaths in the North Ireland conflict. An area of only a few blocks in a state that has the strictest, most invasive gun laws in the US. Gangs will always have access to full auto AK47s that NO STATE allows,they can buy it easier, and cheaper illegally. People fear what they do not know or understand. The 2nd amendment is the last check and against a police state and tyranny which we need. Mao, Stalin, Hitler, all installed gun control, in Tibet alone where they took firearms away from the citizens, one million dead. Gun Control is a myth that kills.
Paul Alexander December 17, 2012 at 05:16 PM
Excellent point about Fairfield Hills Thomas. Every once in a while back in the day a patient would meander onto the athletic fields at NHS. Today...Not only are we medicating these people, at great profit to the drug makers who profited much less when Institutions were more the norm, but these SSRI anti depressants are often the CAUSE for the psychotic breaks that send these people off on their violent sprees. Here’s a list of all the DOCUMENTD SSRI (Anti Depressant) induced suicide and violence incidents. http://www.ssristories.com/index.php?p=school Forget the gun lobby, which politicians are going to stand up to the DRUG lobby? How many drug control bills do you expect to see introduced on January 20th, 2013.
Cath December 17, 2012 at 11:39 PM
These people are right- those guns pictured ARE already illegal in CT. I'm a mom of a preschool aged child and I find it offensive that there is irresponsible journalism too. Hand guns are NOT assault weapons. Clearly this author could do a little more research or at least fix the picture and the term assault weapon. CT has some of the best gun legislation. That's why Adam was turned down in Danbury for trying to buy a gun.
Patrick Oser December 18, 2012 at 01:32 AM
Well said, I agree with Bruce. Gun controll is not the answer. Better access and coverage to mental health issues and maybe Police details at schools.
Patrick Oser December 18, 2012 at 01:44 AM
I read the same on the guns used in this aweful tragedy. If you take the time to look at both sides of the argument and the arguments the NRA has made for defending the 2nd ammendment and everyones right to own a gun, it should steer you towards other areas to solve this problem and not look to gun control. I am not a gun owner nor have I ever shot a gun but I firmly believe in preserving and defending our right to own a gun and defend ourselves.
Patrick Oser December 18, 2012 at 01:55 AM
Very good point. Better mental health care is needed.
Patrick Oser December 18, 2012 at 02:18 AM
"You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass." Quote by Isoroku Yamamoto, Commander-in-Chief of the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. Read your history. As Lobsang Tenzin said above ~ The 2nd amendment is the last check against a police state and tyranny which we need. Mao, Stalin, Hitler, all installed gun control. This article seems bias towards gun control and I would love to see it put to a local or national vote. I am sure the majority of people are NOT for gun control. There are many other areas that need improving.
Old Saybrook Mel January 06, 2013 at 09:22 PM
The Second Amendment is not "the last check against a police state and tyranny" - certainly not in the 21st century. Today's gun-rights advocates are not preparing to oppose a "police state" - they fantasize taking up arms against the democratically-elected Federal government that they fear might restrict their gun rights. If one is looking for parallels in history, consider how the Nazi party came to power in Germany. The Nazis were a minority who intimidated the majority into giving them power; they did so by demonizing Jews and claiming their democratically elected politicians had "sold out" their Aryan heritage. Sound familiar? It should - the NRA bends American history as Nazis bent Germany's. The NRA is just 4 million Americans whose leaders have intimidated Republicans way out of proportion to their numbers. Not one Republican DARE express sympathy for Newtown, nor oppose Wayne Lapierre's "more guns in schools" proposal. By comparison, the AARP represents 40 million Americans, and yet, those same Republicans who dare not support a ban on 100-round magazines feel safe in demanding deep cuts in the benefits of millions of the poor and elderly. Like minority Nazis of prewar Germany, the NRA has taken power from the majority in the USA. Our politicians are terrified of them. No number of Sandy Hooks will give Republicans the backbone to stand up to the NRA.
Old Saybrook Mel January 07, 2013 at 12:55 AM
If you want to eliminate guns from your community, there's a simple way to start the process. Before you allow your child to have a playdate at a friend's house, ask the parents if they have any guns - ANY guns. As you notice here, most gun owners will gladly tell you the truth. Get all your friends to agree to do the same. Then, all of you explain to your children that they cannot play at homes where parents keep guns, and that children of gun owners aren't welcome at your house. Explain to your child that guns are bad. That people who own guns are bad. The kids will do the rest. They are very good at communicating black-white messages. Over the top? The objective is simple. Start a movement to make gun owners and their children outcasts in the community. At first, they will protest precisely like smokers did when the first anti-smoking trends started. Gun owners, like smokers, will pronounce that they have Constitutional rights. You can expect the same kind of abuse at first like the smokers gave the non-smoking majority. They will try to organize their gun-packing friends to push back. Let them. But slowly, one block at a time, you can create a community in which gun owners will have to choose between their obsession with deadly little toys and their family being ostracized.
Old Saybrook Mel January 07, 2013 at 01:22 AM
A bad example: Listen to the recently released McVeigh tapes. He was totally rational, totally sane. So was Terry McNichols. But like so many of those defending gun rights here, obsessed with the idea that "the government" was a threat to the Second Amendment. He made the same arguments. He saw blowing up the Oklahoma City Federal building as simply responding to government overreach. The back of his T-shirt when arrested had the favored right-wing quote that "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." Those of you old enough to remember Barry Goldwater will appreciate how he lit the fuse with his statement. "extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice." It's too easy to claim all mass murderers are mentally disturbed, because then it enables us to excuse their actions as those of madman. Many probably suffer extreme narcissism, and when they realize too late what they've done, they punish themselves. But then, you have the murderers in Oklahoma City, Tucson, and Aurora, and Wichita, the narcissists didn't kill themselves. McVeigh was found sane. Scott Roeder, who killed abortion doctor Geroge Tiller was judged sane. Nidal Malik Hasan, the psychiatrist who committed the Fort Hood massacre, has been judged sane. It's less mental illness that gun people would have you believe.
Old Saybrook Mel January 07, 2013 at 01:29 AM
You can have 7000 pounds of fertilizer and diesel fuel, like McVeigh - but unless you get by theft breaking into a construction company and stealing the blasting caps needed to blow the mixture up, you can only power up a tractor and fertilize a field. In short, you need to take someone's legal blasting caps, just like Lanza took his mother's legal guns. There's a socially redeeming use for blasting caps - which is more than one can say for a Bushmaster 223.
Patrick Oser January 07, 2013 at 02:40 PM
Regarding Old Saybrook Mel: There was also initial news reports that 2-3 other bombs were found at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City bigger than the one McVeigh set off that were sophisticated and beyond his expertise. You are making an argument that anybody sane or unstable can use whatever they can get their hands on to kill someone. Is this a reason to take guns away from everybody else that is law abiding citizen?
Patrick Oser January 07, 2013 at 03:02 PM
I am assuming "Old Saybrook Mel" lives in Newtown CT. If so, I am so very sorry for what happened in your beautiful town and to those beautiful children, families and teachers. Some sensible gun control laws like state wide or national background checks so as to make sure guns DO NOT get into the hands of anyone who should not have one due to mental illness or a criminal background is very reasonable. There have been news reports from CNN and others that have already said that 3-4 hand guns were found at the scene with the shooter Adam Lanza and that a long rifle was found in the trunk of his car. More importantly, a correction to the news reports stated that the Bushmaster 223 was not used in the shooting as originally reported. If the 2nd Amendment is not “the last check against a police state and tyranny” what is the last check? Why would the 21st Century be any different from any other time in our history? Is it because we are more civilized or less corruptible? Man today, is still corrupted by power and money just as much now as in any time in history. Most people do not trust politicians and there is no reason to trust them any more if they take our guns away or begin the process of limiting access to them. Someone here made the argument that “the pen is mightier than the sword”. I am sure who ever first said this quote would still rather have the option to back up that pen with a suitable weapon, if and when needed.
Old Saybrook Mel January 07, 2013 at 03:14 PM
"There was also initial news reports that 2-3 other bombs were found at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City bigger than the one McVeigh set off that were sophisticated and beyond his expertise." There were also "initial news reports" that Islamic Jihad had claimed responsibility for the Oklahoma City blast. Most of the Islamic world firmly believes 9-11 was "an Israeli plot to make Muslims look bad" - after all, "no Jews were killed because they'd been tipped off in advance." If you choose to go down a rabbit hole and stay there, enjoy yourself. But watch out - the Red Queen's a bitch.
Patrick Oser January 07, 2013 at 03:28 PM
I am pretty sure that if we could trust our government we might not be having this debate. Many people do not trust our government. It doesn’t matter who you voted for, you should have concerns. Our past history, as well as The Freedom of information Act has given Americans plenty of reasons not to trust the government or give them any more power than they should have. The signing of the NDAA just passed it’s one year anniversary on 12/31/12 which allowed, among other things, the indefinite detention without due process, including American Citizens. The disclosure of the False Flags, through the freedom of information act is another cause for concern. Operation Northwoods during the JFK administration is just one. JFK, to his great credit, had the common sense to reject this plan presented to him by his Joint Chiefs of Staff. Operation Northwoods is not the only alleged false flag in American History or world history. Hitler’s Reichstag fire was a false flag arson attack on the Reichstag building in Berlin on 27 February 1933 to help Hitler gain complete control of Germany. Before JFK took office in 1961, President Eisenhower, in his farewell speech to the Nation, warned us of The Military~Industrial Complex: “In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the Military-Industrial Complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.”
Old Saybrook Mel January 07, 2013 at 03:34 PM
Some have interpreted my statements as favoring tighter restrictions on guns. To the contrary, I believe all who want them should have all they want, without restriction. In fact, I favor giving those who want handguns a deduction on their income tax returns for its full purchase price. Here's why. The vast majority of guns outside inner city ghettos are used in suicides, or by one spouse on another, or as in Lanza family, by a child on the parent. They are rarely used in defense of home invasions, except occasionally in the accidental shooting of a family member. There's something wonderfully Darwinian about the process. In the majority, gun owners kill off each other or themselves. Like second-hand smoke, there's a certain risk of second-hand gun violence, which is where society's rights come in. But basically, gun owners do an effective job of killing off themselves and so traumatizing their surviving family members that none of them ever want anything to do with guns again. That's the message all the gun advocates don't get about Newtown or any of the similar Connecticut towns. We've had a massive, horrible example of what legal guns can do to our children, and we really have no interest in your explanation of mental illness or Second Amendment rights, or how Adam Lanza might otherwise have killed our children. Your outside, self-interested comments aren't welcome.
Old Saybrook Mel January 07, 2013 at 03:37 PM
And Mr. Oser, if you were a real Connecticut resident, you'd know that Old Saybrook, CT is one of the most wonderful communities in the nation.
Patrick Oser January 07, 2013 at 03:59 PM
Some Gun Control facts I recently came across: After Gun Control In Australia~Published on Jan 1, 2013: 
Armed Robberies UP 69%
 Assaults w/Guns UP 28%
 Gun Murders UP 19% Home Invasions UP 21% You won’t see this on many American news stations. British demonstrators, who feel too many of their rights have been taken away, warn Americans ~ Don’t Give Up Your Guns: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=rBgQCDG-8VA#! My son’s High School on Cape Cod MA has had a police detail for several years from the local town, every school day for more reasons other than just security. Old Saybrook Mel, could you elaborate on how the NRA bends American History? Why do you say the NRA has intimidated Republicans? I don’t think Republicans are the type to get intimidated and neither, I would say are Democrats. The recent fiscal cliff crisis showed who was willing to bend or get intimidated to avoid tax increases, save our economy and the American peoples trust......none of them were intimidated or laid down so I would disagree about anybody being intimidated. Maybe influenced would be a better word but many would think rightfully so.
Old Saybrook Mel January 07, 2013 at 04:43 PM
Mr. Oser, you clearly have the time and the penchant to try to make points no one in Connecticut cares about. We have suffered the slaughter of our children, for God's sake! We don't live in prewar Germany or Australia, and the government that you distrust is one we elected by popular, democratic vote. We as a nation listened to all your arguments and rejected them. In Connecticut, we rejected them very decidedly. Don't like our government? Can't persuade enough citizens to change it? Then LEAVE. And please take your guns with you. Meanwhile, I have no intention of feeding your insensitive diversion from the suffering of a community and a state hurting from the death of its children. Let others, if they choose, engage you. I have a business to run.
Patrick Oser January 07, 2013 at 04:43 PM
The problem with your statement that ~ "Your outside, self-interested comments aren't welcome" is the shooting that happened in Newtown CT is going to quite possibly affect the Nations gun laws, otherwise I am sure most people would mind their own business. Where did you read that ~ "The vast majority of guns outside inner city ghettos are used in suicides, or by one spouse on another"
Patrick Oser January 07, 2013 at 04:57 PM
As soon as you get your President that your democratic state voted for to limit his gun control to CT the rest of us will probably mind our own business. Until then I have no intention of leaving this Country that I was born in. I am from Boston sir not CT otherwise I may have known about your wonderful community of Old Saybrook Mel. I am not done with my persuasion or efforts nor are a lot of other people. So go back to running your business and don't worry about pretending to be the spoke person for Newtown CT.
nick January 08, 2013 at 02:41 AM
FBI: MORE PEOPLE KILLED WITH... eye opening... Really an eye opening bunch of statistics: FBI: MORE PEOPLE KILLED WITH HAMMERS, CLUBS EACH YEAR THAN RIFLES By AWR HAWKINS, Breitbart.com According to the FBI annual crime statistics, the number of murders committed annually with hammers and clubs far outnumbers the number of murders committed with a rifle. This is an interesting fact, particularly amid the Democrats' feverish push to ban many different rifles, ostensibly to keep us safe of course. However, it appears the zeal of Sens. like Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) is misdirected. For in looking at the FBI numbers from 2005 to 2011, the number of murders by hammers and clubs consistently exceeds the number of murders committed with a rifle. Think about it: In 2005, the number of murders committed with a rifle was 445, while the number of murders committed with hammers and clubs was 605. In 2006, the number of murders committed with a rifle was 438, while the number of murders committed with hammers and clubs was 618. And so the list goes, with the actual numbers changing somewhat from year to year, yet the fact that more people are killed with blunt objects each year remains constant.
nick January 08, 2013 at 02:42 AM
Just a little more on statistics...US is NOT the world leader in murders. http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/...est_media.html
nick January 08, 2013 at 02:43 AM
History of school attacks http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_attacks_related_to_primary_schools http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_attacks_related_to_secondary_schools http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_attacks_related_to_post-secondary_schools
Patrick Oser January 08, 2013 at 06:09 PM
Thanks Nick Good Stuff: The following article below this post is for my friend "Mel" from Old Saybrook who initially commented on my posts and then told me he did not have time to continue because he had to run a business and that I should mind my own business since I do not live in CT. I happen to have friends/ neighbors from Cape Cod MA who live in Newtown CT and Sandy Hook who I like and respect very much. I met them and most of their friends a little over 2 years ago. I have been to their homes and their wonderful town many times in the past 2 years and it has been a pleasure getting to know them all. They have been some of the most thoughtful, kindest, real people I have ever met. The media absolutely portrayed Newtown with exact precision. I hope anything I have said in these articles does not offend them, but, Mel, from Old Saybrook, who by the way does not use his real name like me, what happened in Newtown is not isolated to Newtown when our socialist president visits after that tragedy and threatens gun control for the whole nation. you never answered my question before running back to your business to run.Please read the following and I would love to hear your input as well as an answer to your assertions in your previous post about people in the suburbs, like Newtown, who own guns and accidentally shoot themselves and their family members.
Patrick Oser January 08, 2013 at 06:16 PM
An article for my friend Old Saybrook Mel: On Sunday December 17, 2012, 2 days after the CT shooting, a man went to a restaurant in San Antonio to kill his X-girlfriend. After he shot her, most of the people in the restaurant fled next door to a theater. The gunman followed them and entered the theater so he could shoot more people. He started shooting and people in the theater started running and screaming. It’s like the Aurora, CO theater story plus a restaurant! Now aren't you wondering why this isn't a lead story in the national media along with the school shooting? There was an off duty county deputy at the theater. SHE pulled out her gun and shot the man 4 times before he had a chance to kill anyone. So since this story makes the point that the best thing to stop a bad person with a gun is a good person with a gun, the media is treating it like it never happened. Only the local media covered it. The city is giving her a medal next week. Sorry to interrupt the running of your business again Mel......I will try to be more careful in the future.
Da Face! January 30, 2013 at 06:33 PM
My handgun only comes with an 8-round 'clip'. Should I have to throw it away?
Fred January 30, 2013 at 08:31 PM
There are a good many of us in Newtown CT that do not share the opinion of Old Saybrook or the author of the piece here - though they both seem to infer they represents all of us. I had a son in the school very close to the shooting and I echo the sentiment of Mark Mattioli - who does not wish to have more laws put on the books. I applaud his strength in getting up and saying that, though I notice when I google the recent hearings he seems to get little press, the press would have liked to edit him completely out. Many of us here know our history and would not use a silly comparison of Nazi's to the NRA. We also know our history and law enough to know the reason our founding fathers put the hurdle so high to make a constitutional change and put mechanics in place stop putting things such as this to a national vote (though I think the majority do not favor gun control) was to stop an emotional knee jerk reaction of a mob from making lasting change, to protect the rights of the minority if need be. Old Saybrook - you know talking to your neighbors is far from a reliable poll? Also, you can't rely on the noise of the bias media which have their own agenda. Mel - the Nazi's forced their way into power then disarmed the populace to make sure they maintained control. Many do not fantasize about rising up against our government but fear a time it may be needed. It does sadden me that my hamlet's name has been co-opted for others political gain.
Kathy January 30, 2013 at 08:42 PM
Here Here, Fred! Well said.
Jayne Long January 30, 2013 at 09:15 PM
If you have a gun in your house that you are using for protection, are you allowed by law to keep it fully loaded, say on the night stand should someone try to break into your home?

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