Moyers Comments On Recent Gun Violence

I never miss an episode of Bill Moyer’s Journal on PBS. I hesitate to blog about each episode because there’s just no “fluff” to the show. I never know what questions and quotes to pull out, generally it’s all ice cream and no bullshit.

 In any case, Moyers ending commentary this week just really hit home for Kansans. Especially for my Wichita friends here who are passionate about Women’s rights. ~sekanblogger

BILL MOYERS: Finally, you know by now that in our nation’s capital on Wednesday, an elderly white supremacist and anti-Semite is alleged to have walked into the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum with a rifle and killed a security guard before being brought down himself. 88 years old!

You will know, too, of the recent killing in church of Dr. George Tiller, one of the few doctors in the country still performing late term abortions. It was evidence that violence works. His family has now announced that his Kansas clinic will not be reopened.

You may be less familiar with the June 1st shootings in an Army recruiting office in Little Rock that killed one soldier and wounded another. The suspect in question is an African-American Muslim convert who says he acted in retaliation for U.S. military actions in the Middle East.

Soon, however, these terrible deeds will be forgotten, as are the three policemen killed by an assault weapon in Pittsburgh, the four policemen killed in Oakland, California, the 13 people gunned down in Binghamton, New York, the eight dead in a North Carolina nursing home. All this year alone.

There is much talk about hate talk and hate crimes, about violence committed in the name of bigotry or religion. But why don’t we talk about guns? Friends, we are arming ourselves to death. Even as gun shots ricocheted around the country, an amendment allowing concealed weapons in national parks was snuck into the popular credit card reform bill. Another victory for the gun lobby, to sounds of silence from the White House. Fact is, neither party will stand up to the National Rifle Association, the best known front group for the arms merchants. In Virginia, just across the Potomac River from the Holocaust Museum, the winner in this week’s Democratic primary for governor was a man who supports allowing concealed weapons in restaurants that serve alcohol and opposes limiting handgun purchases to one a month. I’m not making this up.

And I’m not making this up either: after that shooting at the Holocaust Museum a conservative organization immediately offered those of us on television a chance to interview the founder of the organization Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership. His expertise, it is said, is in helping people understand why gun control doesn’t belong in a civilized society. Thanks, but no thanks. And no thanks to his counterparts among Christians and Muslims who use every violent shedding of blood to promote the worship of guns.

Guns don’t kill people, they say. People kill people. True. People kill people — with guns.

So, let the faithful of every persuasion keep their guns for hunting and target practice, for collecting. And their permits for a gun to protect their business or home, even though it’s 22 times more likely to shoot a member of their family than an intruder. But, please, every year there are 30,000 gun deaths and more than 400,000 non fatal gun-related assaults. Enough’s enough.


Filed under Crimes, hate groups, Kansas, Radical Rightwing groups, Religion

10 responses to “Moyers Comments On Recent Gun Violence

  1. I’ve come to believe that extremists are unable to reason, unable to listen, unable to overcome their obsession long enough to see it for what it is.

    The person who doesn’t have a uterus — especially not my uterus doesn’t get to decide what I do with my body part.

    The person who believes the color of their skin, their heritage, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, whether their gonads are inside or outside the body makes them superior to another person is deluded.

    People who think the guns and ammunition they own is important or interesting to everyone else are unable to understand the basics of social interaction, and are bores. We all have our own interests and rational adults are socially aware enough to know when their conversation is and isn’t stimulating the assembled group.

    Any adult who thinks it smart, sophisticated, or acceptable to denigrate another for disagreeing (Where all think alike, no one thinks very much. Walter Lippmann 1889 – 1974), or to criticize a person based on personal appearance (she has a big butt, he is bald) hasn’t yet matured and childish behavior in an adult is obvious to all other adults.

    • lilacluvr

      Unfortunately, I think in today’s society there are too many immature adults exhibiting juvenile behavior who are the ones running their mouths in the media.

      I see King Rush and Gang as people who have learned it is easier to sit back and criticize than to actually attempt to change the world to make it better.

      And what is worse, these people are paid quite well for their so-called talents.

      Just think what Rush’s $400 million contract could have paid for in the way of providing education, health care, jobs for alot of people in order for them to keep our economy going.

      Instead of that, that $400 million is probably in some offshore tax haven doing very little but supporting Rush’s habit.

  2. Now on violence. I have no understanding. I do not know what it takes to perpetrate violence against another human being. My best guess is the person who is capable is not mentally stable (at least at that moment in time). And when the person who is not mentally stable at that moment in time is in possession of a gun the chances of grave injury are increased.

    I will not have a gun in my home. I know that for me the chances of an unfortunate accident are greater than the chances of someone wanting to do me harm in my home. I’m also positive that if a person wanted to do me harm in my home I wouldn’t use a gun in an attempt to persuade them otherwise. It’s not something that will ever be within my capabilities.

    If I am shot — injured or killed — no one should ever say anything like, “It’s too bad she didn’t have her own gun available to protect herself.” If that situation happens please believe me that I would not have wanted it to be different, would not have wanted to have lowered myself to be someone who could physically hurt any other person.

    All the silly comparisons of being prepared for fire with smoke alarms… are comparing apples to oranges. My being prepared with a smoke alarm doesn’t put me in a position of having an instrument that might hurt someone else.

    So, gun lovers, prepare however you want, be ready to hurt back or hurt first, if that’s the way you can live, but leave me alone. Leave me to know I can’t hurt someone else and won’t prepare for that eventuality.

  3. tosmarttobegop

    I have to question that statistic, as a statistic is often formed to support a pre-conceived outcome.
    Like the statistic that NOW put out over twenty years ago, it was shocking that one out of every four girl would be sexually assaulted before the age of 18. It took twenty years of this statistic being sighted and acted on before someone actually looked at it. They were counting on some questions like, “Have you ever had someone accidentally touch your private parts?”. There is hardly a girl in the rush of changing classes in a school has not had their breast elbowed in that crowded and hurried hallways. I have had girls that while walking their hand swing and touch my groin.

    Accidents do happen with guns in the home, there have been the occurrence where dad thinking that everyone is asleep and the shadow coming from the Kitchen is a stranger. Then to their horror it turns out to be their teenage daughter they shoot. But that to is a fault in their use, you can not just shoot anyone because they are in your house.

    Fnord I respect your stance, in many ways that takes far more courage then to face an attacker with a firearm in hand would. I do support private ownership of firearms in the home. I have been there in the patrol car seat rushing to the call of a burglary or prowler. I felt like I could not get there fast enough as a life might be at stake. I would have rather dealt with a innocent shooting a criminal then working a innocent being killed at the hands of a criminal.

    NOW, I do consider myself a better candidate for a CCP than some, but I do not have one. That does not mean some time in the future I would not get one. My point is that as much as I do realize the benefits and that is could happen that the stars and sun aligned and I would be in need or be able to stop the killing of innocent people. I am for now simply playing on the odds which I am also aware of that the chance is slim.

    My wife offered a couple of years ago to pay for the permit for my birthday. As of yet I have not taken her up on it. You have to be responsible as a gun owner, it is not something to be left on a coffee table or simply in the drawer in the nightstand beside the bed.

    The one common factor about the shooting is that there had to be a predefine desire to kill the victims.
    It was not that there was a gun and that is the fault, a firearm can lay on a table for long enough that the ammo goes bad and the metal of the weapon rusts to ash. It does not after a couple of month sudden realize it can not kill someone and take over the mind of the next human being that comes along. Or jump down from the table and rush into the street firing wildly.

    Better to see the numbers of shooting as a problem other then there are too many guns out there.
    Archie Bunker said something to his daughter on the subject of gun violence that is a focus on the problem.
    “Would it make you feel better if they had been pushed out of a window?”.
    In my life time I have heard of all manners of things used as a weapon, the guy who took a five gallon gas can into a grocery store and pouring gas over three people and setting them on fire was one. People do not need a firearm to carry out their intent. They do need the intent to carry out their intent no matter how.

  4. tosmarttobegop

    Ok in some respect this issue is like that of abortion. And is often a common thought process in handling the issues. The Pro-lifers think if they can just stop abortion than all problems are solved.

    Likewise the gun controlers are thinking the problem is solved by the control of guns.

  5. lilacluvr

    While I support the right to own guns, I also expect responsibility and accountability to go with that right and privilege.

    If that means some level of common sense gun control, then so be it. We have regulations for drivers licenses and car registrations – why not guns?

    I grew up with my dad’s rifle in the house. He was a hunter. We lived by a creek and he occasionally shot snakes and muskrats that would come up to the house. But my dad never did let us even touch it until we old enough to understand the potential danger of a gun.

    I believe we need to find common ground in this gun issue but, I’m afraid the gun issue is like the abortion issue – both sides are so entrenched that common ground is not likely to be found anytime soon.

  6. Time for some humor. When George H.W. Bush was speaking in Wichita a few years ago, he retold a story about when he was president and in California, a rather large and not attractive woman came up to him and yelled: “Bush! Keep your hands off of my uterus!”

    Bush said he replied, “Lady, that won’t be a problem.”

  7. ninjanurse

    We’re a long way from responsible gun ownership when madmen can collect a private arsenal. I don’t think we can prohibit guns any more than we can prohibit alcohol, but we have a right to expect that gun owners will be accountable for the guns and ammunition they buy.
    Responsible gun owners are already doing more than the law requires, because like toosmarttobegop says, you can’t just leave a loaded gun in your night table and think you’re safe.