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Let the Gun Control Debate Begin

Governor Malloy’s State of the State address, the appointment of the Sandy Hook commission and the opening of the new legislative session marked the official start to the debate that will inevitably result in new gun control legislation for Connecticut.

 

This past week, I sat on the floor of the House for Governor Dannel Malloy’s State of the State address at the invitation of State Rep. Gail Lavielle (R-143).  The room was energized with the knowing smiles of campaign veterans and giddy, apple-cheeked newbies ready to put long-promised campaign ideals into practice.  

Gov. Malloy spent several choked-up minutes speaking about Newtown, the newly appointed Sandy Hook commission and the need for gun control. And although his speech was pretty darned light on the details of how to move the Connecticut economy forward (he actually spent more time waving the flags of accomplishment), he did get the soundbite of the day when he observed that the answer to the gun violence problem is not more guns.

Last week, and how to best respond to it. Most reader comments—and I read every single one, even if I don’t always respond—were insightful and rational.

Because Patch In and Patch Back are meant to encourage local debate about the issues of the day, rather than reply to each thread I decided to incorporate readers’ comments here:  

  1. Many asked, "Could someone please explain how mental health evaluations will stop crime?" The Sandy Hook assassin used guns taken from his mother, who acquired her weapons legally and presumably would have passed a mental health background check.
  2. Some said, "Maybe the answer to gun control IS more guns." No one talks about the number of people whose lives were saved after an armed citizen took out an unsuspecting attacker. Perhaps trained-and-packing staff could prevent future tragedies.
  3. Others observed, "Are you crazy? No one should have a gun except for members of law enforcement or the military, period." Do you really think your handgun or shotgun is going to keep you safe in the unlikely event the U.S. government storms your house?
  4. And finally: "A killer with conviction will still find a way to kill, gun or no gun." Remember Oklahoma City?

Many readers used statistics to solidify their points, the details of which I did not verify and will not report here. But lest this debate become a retread of I’ll see your safe and legal gun ownership statistic with an equally persuasive gun violence statistic and raise you with a heartbreaking anecdote, let us stop and reflect on some additional considerations.

First, as of this writing, there has been no credible information on the medicine the Newtown shooter may have been taking. Nevertheless, anecdotal evidence suggests that he was, obviously, mentally ill. What, if any, treatments were made available to him? Did he engage in or refuse treatment, and why?

Second, law-abiding, gun-owning citizens are exposed to the same violent movies, video games and news every day that gun-owning criminals are. Nevertheless, most gun owners are able to resist these violent influences and make it through their lives without committing horrific crimes (or having their weapons stolen for the purpose of committing horrific crimes). Does this fact render the cultural influence argument moot?

Third, shouldn't the purpose of this legislation be to reduce violence in all its forms, not just reduce the number or type of guns sold in Connecticut? And if that is the case, don't we need to address the serious mental health treatment issue in this country?

The ugly truth is that any current or future Connecticut gun control legislation, no matter how strict, is impotent if a crazed person decides to commit a mass killing. Securing a weapon, is, apparently, a simple matter for a determined criminal.

The nature of these tragedies is such that civilized society is compelled to act. And yet, this compulsion to “do something” often results in feels-good, does-nothing, time-squandering legislation.   

The gun control debate, up until now, has always resulted in a stalemate because both sides are well armed (no pun intended) with equally persuasive statistics and advocates. Nevertheless, the Second Amendment is clear: the people have the right to keep and bear arms and the Supreme Court of the United States has twice ruled in recent few years to uphold #2.

As a result, our best approach is de-stigmatizing psychological illness to encourage family members to seek help for those who need it most and by making that help readily available. Perhaps we should make a thorough mental health evaluation part and parcel of the well visit (let’s put Obamacare to work!). We should also implement an “if you see something, say something” approach to potential public safety threats.

Just to be clear, I’m no mental health expert. But the approaches we’ve used thus far clearly aren’t working. Anyone who would attack a school, or a movie theater, or a military base, or a mall, or an office is clearly in need of treatment.

Finally, let us remember that more legislation is only better legislation if it provides real value and lasting positive change.

Greg Burns January 17, 2013 at 04:22 AM
Apparently Paul is suggesting we do something that works. Secure our public venues with more than a sign saying, "No Gun Zone". How about keeping dangerous criminals in jail instead of releasing them. That little bit of liberalism by Connecticut politicians in 2011 already took two lives this summer in convenience stores. There will be more. The kid who stole guns in East WIndsor, they let him go and he went back to steal more. How hard has our justice department pusued federal prosecutions for federal gun offenses, or the state for that matter? As for the schools they will have to be defended. Bottom line, as a citizen, when a criminal attacks without or with any weapon, anywhere, you better be prepared to deal with it, no one else will likely be around. Violence is not going to go away and gun controls for law abiding citizens is not going to significantly impact violent crime.
G January 17, 2013 at 04:38 AM
Wow, Greg...did Paul really say all that? Seems like he had more questions then answers. Thanks, Greg, for your interpretation of Mr. Alexander's comments. I'll bet he couldn't have said it better himself.
Greg Burns January 17, 2013 at 04:55 AM
Lisa is right, stricter gun restrictions are certain for Connecticut. Connecticut has background checks for all gun purchases already, even for gun shows I believe. So Magazine restrictions are likely on the way irespective of congressional action. Background checks to purchase ammunition is rediculous and nearly impossible to administrate because of volume. Penalty taxes are likely unconstitutional and if not discriminatory to gun owning citizens. Assault weapon bans are random by appearance with nothing to do with function. My pistol is an assault weapon if used as such. However, the fact is that limiting my pistol or rifle to a 10 bullet magazine will not limit the criminal. I just have to be a better shot. I had better be if the liberals keep letting criminals out of prison. Question is, when criminals break those gun laws, are nwe going to deal with them severely? Or are we just going to punish legal gun owners?
Greg Burns January 17, 2013 at 12:59 PM
G - Some of hear what we want to, no doubt. When violence comes to your feet, just call 911, then call me, I will bring a mop. Using Obama's reasoning (which "sounds good" but stupid), If only two children (or adults) can be saved by people having an "assault looking rifle" or a 30 round magazine, we should let people have them? Hundreds of thousands of citizens every year are saved by show of superior force because they have a gun. In most of those defense situations a shot is never fired. In many defense situations they are not reported as half the crime in America is not. I have been in those situations myself as have many people I have met who carry guns. If they did not have a gun they would have become victims. Most criminals will not mess with people because they even LOOK like someone who might carry a gun. That is the criminal's greatest fear and restraint. Paul reflects the gun owner's fear of where will gun control end - that it is a slipery slope to England and Australia and other countries which have outlawed guns. I do not fear that in America because too many people would die in very little time. The anti-gun liberals would not be there to save them or their children. They will not be there to save you as well, today or tomorrow.
Paul Alexander January 17, 2013 at 01:38 PM
G...You're part of the problem. Greg Burns...You're part of the solution.
El Rushbo January 17, 2013 at 02:44 PM
January 19,2013 WASHINGTON — The head of the National Rifle Association says the organization has no problem with tighter background checks of gun purchasers. VERY GOOD, one step at a time!
Greg Burns January 17, 2013 at 05:11 PM
McGarry has a point. Obama is a shameful opportunist. Obama and hundreds of other politicians around the nation (particularly in Connecticut) are blaming gun regulation for law abiding citizens when they have DONE NOTHING to ensure there are proper security systems to protect children in our schools. There are doors and lock systems to keep gunman out and automatically warn police and people inside the building when a main entry door is breached -- HELLO people. Obama is not only playing to his base of extrimist anti gun abolitionists (using dead children nas an excuse) but showing his own liberal bias against people "who cling to their bibles and their guns". He is also trying to absolve himself of any responsibility for basic lack of school security in America. We might notice Obama did not protest as much with previous shootings during the presidential campagin. Timing is everything to take full advantage of a crisis. The man is a fraud, a deceiver and a conn man, but he hides it well enough to fool a bit more than half the people in this nation. Such men set us on a path of self destruction. We will get what we have asked for, but not what we bargained for. Let's hope we do not get what we deserve for our ignorance.
Paul Alexander January 18, 2013 at 01:40 AM
Mr. G.... The point of asking questions, versus preaching a point of view, is to stimulate critical thinking and allow others to discover the answers for themselves. A method advanced by some long dead Greek dude I believe. Greg Burns got it. Why didn't you? Don't know any long dead Greek dudes?
G January 18, 2013 at 06:05 AM
Mr. Alexander - You replied... "G...You're part of the problem. Greg Burns...You're part of the solution." Very profound, insightful, and imaginative, NOT. And no, I'm sorry I don't know any long dead Greek dudes. I may not be as old as you, "cuz". Could you please define for me, in your own words, what "evil" is? And how would you know when you're faced with it? And what would be your reaction to "evil"? Could you also please define "deranged sociopath", and explain to all of us how to recognize such individuals? I'm sure we could all benefit from your expertise on these questions.
Greg Burns January 18, 2013 at 05:03 PM
Donald, I will stand guard or protest at your son's school. Put me on the list. If you decide to organize something let me know. I would be concerned if I had a child at a Newtown school or any other school. My daughters went to colleges that had ARMED police. I loved that. My guess is you are right that your son is no safer today no matter what school he is in. If someone with ANY KIND of gun shows up there - it will require someone with a gun to stop them. That can not be me, because I can not bring my gun to your son's school to protect him. I can not bring a gun to my daughter's college to even pick her up. Only police and killers can go to those schools with guns. It does not have to be that way. Police can be supplemented by fathers like us with or without guns, better with. There military veterans, retired police, firemen or just average guys who can be part of a auxilary force in any town trained by state or local police and even NRA instructors. Of course, THE STATE, has to give approval for us to protect our kids. We can not do it on our own, even though they HAVE NOT protected our kids. If they do not prove that they CAN and WILL do so something must be done. Watch out for excuses, smoke and eyewash.
Greg Burns January 18, 2013 at 05:57 PM
Rep. Bolinsky says that concerns in the Newtown area will drive response. Of course the concerns are the same in every district. http://newtown.patch.com/articles/rep-bolinsky-promises-newtown-will-drive-task-force?ncid=newsltuspatc00000001 More Gun Control, magazines, whatever will be the real focus, mostly affecting legal gun owners. However, furthur restricting gun ownership in Connecticut with more restrictions than most states, WILL NOT BETTER PROTECT KIDS IN OUR SCHOOLS. To be honest, I can live with a 10 round magazine even when facing a criminal with 30 rounds. But that will not help Donald McGarry's son nor protect his school. As unpopular, discouraging, regretful, distasteful, controversial and upsetting as it may be - It will take a guy with a gun to stop a guy with a gun. Denial of that reality is foolish. The bad guys will not go away and we may be facing more of them in the future for many reasons. They will be able to get guns illegally, just as they can get drugs. We have to make sure our kids are effectively protected -- regretfully by people with guns.
Greg Burns January 18, 2013 at 09:53 PM
Yes most responsible citizens who own and carry guns are their own Militia. They have recognized that government can not protect them in their homes, streets, malls, movie houses, churches, parking lots, subways, convenience stores and even their schools. Many have recognized that they have to be responsible for their own defense and their family's defense, that they are not safe anywhere from criminals, predators and crazy people. Others who are in denial about their safety become very upset when something happens that threatenes them where they live. They realize that violence can easily tough their lives and they look to others to be responsible. They look for easy answers in a society where lawlessness is excused and where felons are released from prison to please some voters or to keep the state from going broke while our tax dollars are spent for things more inportant than the safety of citizens. Contact me off-line gjburns@cox.net.
Greg Burns January 18, 2013 at 11:38 PM
Security for schools is now an inconvient reality that many think must be addressed. It is inconvenient because many states, cities and towns are broke. The problem is where is the money going to come from. Hell our nation is broke relying on borrowing money from China or printing it making the dollar worthless. Even Connecticut has been borrowing money to pay current expenses as well as taxing us to death. More spending means future taxes we will ALL have to pay, some day. So what can we do that we can afford. A part time or full time auxiliary police is a solution. Responsible, local people can be found who could be easily trained and managed by local police departments. The "powers that be" would have to relinquish their presumption that current security and policing models are the only answer. Obviously, not proving that effective. Special school security would assume a more limited role than full time police officers. Yes, they can be trained to safely use firearms as a last resort, within the law, as millions of citizens do now. Yes, they can be trained to watch, be aware, and stand as a barrior to harm for our children. Many will distain this concept. However, I have trained soldiers and citizens to effectively defend themselves, men AND women. I know it CAN BE DONE. In fact, I have trained many women in self defense who I would not want to mess with. A lot of mothers would step up to defend their schools as well as fathers, and do it well!
Greg Burns January 19, 2013 at 02:55 AM
McGarry, you are using a bit of the Paul Alexander approach, provoking questions and sharp brevity. Both are instructional for me.
Z January 20, 2013 at 03:53 AM
The Second Amendment notwithstanding, Ronald Reagan’s answer to that question—“There’s no reason why on the street today a citizen should be carrying loaded weapons”—bears consideration: It’s true that President Reagan’s position on gun-control shifted a few times. But in 1991 he decisively, passionately and eloquently threw his support behind the Brady Bill, requiring background checks and a seven day waiting period for handgun purchase. In an Op-Ed piece published in the New York Times looking back on the assassination attempt he survived, the former president said: “This nightmare might never have happened if legislation that is before Congress now—the Brady bill—had been law back in 1981... If the passage of the Brady bill were to result in a reduction of only 10 or 15 percent of those numbers (and it could be a good deal greater), it would be well worth making it the law of the land.” Around the same time, at a gathering at George Washington University marking the 10th anniversary of the attempt on his life, he was quoted as saying: “With the right to bear arms comes a great responsibility to use caution and common sense on handgun purchases. And it's just plain common sense that there be a waiting period to allow local law-enforcement officials to conduct background checks on those who wish to purchase handguns."
G January 20, 2013 at 04:01 AM
Editor - Is there a reason why some comments that were posted 2 nights ago were only published to the site this morning? I understand that someone needs to review each posting at some point, but shouldn't that be handled in chronological order? And shouldn't all posts be published with the original post date and time? Approving some posts "when you get around to it" makes no sense and loses all context by the time you publish it 24-48 hours later. Sometimes it is difficult to follow the comments on this site, and now I realize why. Comments are not "approved" or published in chronological order. And even then the date/time stamp is when you decide to approve it, not when the original post was submitted. Date/time of this post is 1/19/2013 11:00 p.m.
Greg Burns January 20, 2013 at 11:59 PM
GEE Z, Connecticut and many other states require background checks for all transfers of firearms. Where it is not done it should be done, outside of police going to where I work and to my neighbors houses whiich is being done in some Gestapo towns in CT, like Enfield and Glastonbury. However, thou, should not use Ronald Regan to justify denial of ownership, carry, access and self defense with firearms. See this article by President Regan in Guns & Ammo Magazine in 1975. http://archives.gunsandammo.com/content/ronald-reagan-gun-owners-champion New York "makes law-abiding citizens sitting ducks for criminals who have no qualms about violating it in the process of killing and robbing and burglarizing." Do we think, " that criminals will be willing to give up their guns if he makes carrying them against the law. What naivete! Mightn't it be better in those areas of high crime to arm the homeowner and the shopkeeper, teach him how to use his weapons and put the word out to the underworld that it is not longer totally safe to rob and murder? Isn't (violent crime) due as much as anything to the criminal's instinctive knowledge that the average victim no longer has means of self-protection? Criminals are not dissuaded by soft words, soft judges or easy laws. They are dissuaded by fear and they are prevented from repeating their crimes by death or by incarceration. In my opinion, proposals to outlaw or confiscate guns are simply unrealistic panacea."
Greg Burns January 21, 2013 at 01:29 AM
NO ONE in America should be able to get a gun by any sale, or private gun transfer, without a background check, No One. Now that comes from a "card carrying" NRA member, with a gun license in 3 states, and a guy who "never goes anywhere without it". Having said that, it does not mean I subscribe to many "Brady Bunch" or current fact-less legislative proposals which would do NOTHING to restrain criminals but may severely limit my ability to own and carry guns (which criminals can get) to protect myself and my family. A citizen has limited choices regarding their personal safety and security: 1.) Ignore It, 2.) Believe you are safe, (nice town & neighborhood) 3.) Faith that Government, courts, police and prisons will protect you, 4.) Denial that violent crime will reach YOU, 5.) Denial that YOU need better personal defense & security options, 6.) Prepare yourself to defend yourself and family counting on no one else. The BAD NEWS is that options 1 through 5 will not work. The GOOD NEWS is that option 6 works for hundreds of thousands of people every year who would have been seriously harmed or killed if they did not have a gun for defense. See The Cato Report "When Criminals Face Armed Resistance From Citizens" if you are looking for a factual and reational discussion backed by thousands of citizen defense Press Reports , No Less. http://newtown.patch.com//articles/let-the-gun-control-debate-begin-f6d98fb4#comment_6119618
Greg Burns January 21, 2013 at 03:21 AM
Z - "There’s no reason why on the street today a citizen should be carrying loaded weapons." I am obligated to respond because of harm to those who might believe this. Hundreds of thousands of Americans are froced to protect themselves every year with guns, to save their lives. Connecticut and America is upset because they have seen that senless violence is possible at any time, anywhere. People are upset because they know in their hearts that they are not safe, that their children are not safe.That is the ugly truth. People do not want to accept that frightning fact. In Connecticut our "leaders" released 7,500 criminals to our comminities last year who will beat, rob, rape, and yes kill people again. Where is the outcry about that? A study of recidivism within the Connecticut Department of Correction completed in February of 2012 - found that 14,398 male sentenced offenders within five years of their release; 79 percent were re-arrested, 69 percent were convicted of a new crime. That does not account for many crimes by those same "criminals" for which they were not caught. Those "leaders" and many of you are now assaulting the self protection rights of the only people that stand between me and you from violence at any time. Criminals fear the armed citizen as the greatest restraint to unresrtained violence. If you are somewhere when a nut or criminal starts shooting, you better pray I am there with a gun as good as the one he has.
Greg Burns January 21, 2013 at 11:37 AM
Regretfully, because of late evening writing the wrong link was provided yesterday for the Cato Institute study on "Tough Targets: When Criminals Face Armed Resistance From Citizenship" (released February 2012). This is a current, comprehensive, rational and I believe an unbiased discussion of armed citizen defense. http://www.cato.org/publications/white-paper/tough-targets-when-criminals-face-armed-resistance-citizens . Besides 20 pages of initial subject targeted discussion there are an additional 30 pages of sample self defense incidents, reported by a largely unsympathetic press, documenting where inocent citizens have been forced to defend themselves with firearms. It is an educational read for non-gun and pro-gun people alike. I suggest it as a read for people to become aware of the need for armed defense. For the non-gun people who wish to become better informed on self defense issues, pull it up. The "Brady Bunch" will not, they are too restricted by their own bias.
Mom of two January 21, 2013 at 02:40 PM
Another view Greg: http://arstechnica.com/science/2011/04/guns-in-the-home-lots-of-risk-ambiguity/ Summed up it says, a gun kept at home is more likely to be used in violence, an accident or an attempted suiced than self defense and a poorly trained gun owner is unlikely to use one well even when self defense in involved. "Regular citizens with guns who are tired, drunk, angry or afraid and who are not trained in dispute resolution have lots of opportunities for innappropriate gun use." Using a gun in self defense is extremely rare, mostly involving defense against animals, about 1% in home invasions. Children 5-14 are 11 times more likely to be killed in an accidental shooting and kids 15-24 14 times more likely. Women are more like to be murdered by a spouse, boyfriend or close relative when a gun is present. Suicides are more likely to be succesful with a gun. But having said all that, you can relax, Greg, because again, no one is coming to take your precious guns away.
Greg Burns January 21, 2013 at 08:26 PM
Mom of Two: NOT TRUE - actually a lie - "Using a gun in self defense is extremely rare". I have been there myself as have many people I know. The only ones you hear about are those who did not take the means to defend themselves, victims are more news worthy. You must have got that "untruth" from "Brady Bunch"' sympathizers. So what starts with a gross untruth is not worth furthur discussion. You did not read the Cato Report referenced above, did you, with not so rare press self defense reports. Mom, It happens across America every day, hopefully not at your house or along your path. But unfortunately, you will see much more evidence to come. Do not open your door to people you do not know. Watch your back and those who watch and approach you. Be vigilant for yourself and all you love. Trust little of those you do not know well. Have a good security system and a cell phone always handy. Learn to fight, at least.
Greg Burns January 22, 2013 at 02:53 AM
Mom of Two: Many people do not realize how much violence exists around them. They can not believe (like you) that HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF SELF DEFENSE INCIDENTS OCCUR A YEAR WHERE PEOPLE DEFEND WITH GUNS, ( Read the darn Cato Report). When people learn they are not safe they look to blame someone. The politicians will not accept the blame, they will look to escape it, because they have not kept you safe. Hell, America has practically forgotten about 9/11. But our terrorist enemies have not gone away. They will come back. Moreover, we have our own home-grown terrorists who walk among us. They will not go away, they multiply daily, especially in this economy and a liberal society. They are career predators, reckless, merciless, without natural feelings, CARE-LESS. They get around. They look for prey daily. The only thing they fear is guys like me who will stand against them if they threaten to harm and kill in our presence. We will defned you as you call 911 and wait for the police to arrive. I was trained well, along the way as a protector, I train others. Believe it or not, I learned that from my mother. IT IS about the bad guys and the good guys, with guns. Like it or not, that is the way it is -- and you will not see it change - especially in a liberal society that makes it easy to be a criminal. We have not "demanded" that criminals be stopped and delt with harshly and kept in prison. In Connecticut we are letting them go. I have no comments on that one yet.
Mom of two January 22, 2013 at 04:23 AM
Well Greg I don't know anyone who has had to use a gun to defend themselves or have had the need to. I'm just not buying it, Cato report or not. I guess it depends on where you live. You seem to feel that evil is lurking around every corner and criminals are just waiting to pounce on you. Doesn't seem like a fun way to live. I'm glad you feel protected by your gun and you have the right to it. I'm not sure what you're getting so excited about.
Greg Burns January 22, 2013 at 12:14 PM
Mom of Two: Those 7,500 criminals released in Connecticut last year will beat, rob rape, molest and kill people somewhere. They already have killed two that we know. Somebody will need to be defending themselves somewhere. Because I know I am and my family not imune to the victimization I see on the news EVERY DAY, I "choose" that it will not happen to us. If I am present for the next Adam Lanza, that will not happen either. There will be other Adam Lanza's. But there are so many more who just prey on people like you. That person on tonight's news could be you. I am "excited" because ignorant liberals wish to disarm me to make them safer, when it will do the opposite. They wish to do it incrementally by chipping away at my rights. The strategy of most fatists. If they succed you will loose the unseen defense that controls much of America's crime. A well armed citizenry. Do not doubt the intent of fools and liberalism. They kill you by stupidity. Like those who released the prisoners in CT, most of which you would not want on your doorstep. Google "Petit", those criminals were released as well. The Connecticut Liberal Establishment killed those women.
Greg Burns January 22, 2013 at 12:57 PM
Time for citizens to disarm, violent crime is UP 17% nationally last year, Bureau of Justice Statistics, US Dept. of Justice. They do their own studies because they know police reports and FBI reports quoted nationally are inaccurate because of unreported crime. However, police generated data reporting violent crime gowing DOWN is what is used by the liberal press and politicians. This report is a rare example of government correcting itself. Expect the violence to go higher. http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/index.cfm?ty=pbdetail&iid=4494 Bottom line they say your chance of being a victim of violent crime rose from 1.9 persons per 100 to 2.25 persons per hundred in 2011. That means randomly out of every 100 people who cross your path, AT LEAST 2.25 of them have a good chance of being beaten, robbed, raped molested or killed this year. A pleasant thought. It also means that ouut of every 100 people randomly who cross your path, 2.25 of them are criminals who would attack you given the opportunity. There were 5.8 MILLION violent crimes in America in 2011 with an increase of 17%. Divided evenly that is 116,000 violent crimes per state. Connecticut and America, do you feel safe now. How well are you protected by government. Time to disarm the citizens.
Greg Burns January 22, 2013 at 02:47 PM
Fascists (not fatists as referenced previously to the heads of our liberal establishment) Webster - "Philosophy of government that stresses the primacy and glory of the state, unquestioning obedience to its leaders, subordination of the individual will and rights to the state's authority, and harsh suppression of dissent. Martial virtues are celebrated, while liberal and democratic values are " disparaged". The government is not protecting it's citizens from violent crime. Federal prosecutions for gun crime under the Obama administration is down 40%. How well are they protecting you? Yet they want to restrict my rights to arm myself. But if I shoot someone for defending myself, they will be all over me. A client just called me to renew his Massachusetts permit. He was approached at a stop light last week and threatened with a demand for money in Hartford. He put his gun on the dashboard and told the guy to go away. The guy went away. He did not call the police because he was concerned he would be arrested for brandishing a weapon even though he has a Connecticut permit. He made a mistake because had the criminal complained to poiice - he would have been arrested. But that same criminal will threaten and rob others, and may likely harm them to get what he wants. This happens every day to citizens who defend themselves with firearms. He wants his daughter to get a permit to carry a gun, he is concerned she will become a victim. Is he wrong?
Lisa Bigelow January 23, 2013 at 04:55 PM
Thanks to all for your well-reasoned comments. Just wanted to let you know that I wrote a follow-up to this piece that is running this week. It's not yet on Newtown Patch but is currently on Wilton Patch. Feel free to comment and pass along: http://wilton.patch.com/articles/let-cts-gun-control-debate-begin-part-ii-03f80123
Greg Burns January 23, 2013 at 06:25 PM
Donald, I KNOW Mom of 2 is a loving and good person, and likely a fantastic mom. However, most like her have never experienced violence and think they are safe because of that, though it all around them. I strongly believe we will see increasing violence in America, so reports our Justice Dept. for 2011, http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/press/cv11pr.cfm. I hate guns and the fact that my family is not safe anywhere - so I am prepared accordingly. I also train others to do the same, including many moms. Not everone can, will or should get a gun. However, people DO need to be more aware, vigilant and prepared against violence and more responsible for their own security. I teach many skills options for average people to not become victims, it is needed. Using a common anoligy,some of us choose to be sheepdogs, ready to confront the wolves, who will attack the sheep. Not everyone can do that. But I believe we need those who choose to do that. It is a huge deterrant to criminals. It is a fact that much pain and many lives are saved by people willing to do that. Government can not. That is proven daily on the news.
Greg Burns January 23, 2013 at 07:20 PM
We move on to http://wilton.patch.com/articles/let-cts-gun-control-debate-begin-part-ii-03f80123

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