The militarization of law enforcement, sensationalized mass shooting events, and a creeping police state have merged in the now common “active shooter drills” that transpire in various public places, including schools.
Yet recent research suggests how such exercises do little in the way of preparing for mass casualty events, and instead needlessly traumatize children, in the process making an entire generation more acquiescent to state authority and control over their everyday lives.
Andrew Ross Sorkin New York Times (September 12, 2019)
In a direct and urgent call to address gun violence in America, the chief executives of some of the nation’s best-known companies sent a letter to Senate leaders on Thursday, urging an expansion of background checks to all firearms sales and stronger “red flag” laws.
“Doing nothing about America’s gun violence crisis is simply unacceptable and it is time to stand with the American public on gun safety,” the heads of nearly 150 companies, including Levi Strauss, Twitter and Uber, say in the letter, which was shared with The New York Times.
The letter — which urges the Republican-controlled Senate to enact bills already introduced in the Democrat-led House of Representatives — is the most concerted effort by the business community to enter the gun debate, one of the most polarizing issues in the nation and one that was long considered off limits.
“He’s a child … He didn’t cause, or act, or do anything though.”
Daniel Figueroa IV TampaBayTimes
A Seabreeze High School student Friday became the fifth Floridian charged with threatening to commit a mass shooting after deadly shootings in El Paso and Dayton earlier this month.
According to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office, 15-year-old Adam Guzzetti was charged with a felony after authorities learned he threatened to shoot and kill people at his school, Seabreeze High School in Daytona Beach.
Using the username FalconWarrior920 on the gaming platform Discord, deputies said Guzzetti on Thursday used a fake name and stated “I Dalton Barnhart vow to bring my fathers (sic) m15 to school and kill 7 people at minimum.”
Another user alerted the FBI to the threat, which was then passed on to the sheriff’s office. Members of the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force were able to track the FalconWarrior920 IP address to an address in Holly Hills, where Guzzetti lives with his mother, Amethy Organ, according to an arrest report.
Editor’s Note: While this article was published two months ago it ably covers the basics of state and federal efforts at Red Flag “precrime” laws designed to preempt citizens’ due process before depriving them of their Second Amendment rights. After the Dayton and El Paso mass shooting events Congressional leaders are effectively in competition to outdo each other in gun control legislation.
[Senator Marco] Rubio’s TAPS Act would encourage law enforcement to give EVERYONE a personal threat assessment (adults and children) and single out those they deem as future threats. That information would then be used as a kind of Precog substitute to “stop dangerous individuals before they can commit an act of violence.
A little over a year ago, I wrote a satirical piece entitled The Minority Report Act of 2018: a Law Guaranteed to End Gun Violence. Using the Minority Report movie as a basis, I demonstrated the extremes Republicans and Democrats are willing to go to find ways to deny us our Second Amendment rights in the name of “preventing” acts of terrorism.
The inspiration for the article came to me after witnessing the overreaction by Trump and the GOP to the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL, and a bill presented in 2016 by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (H.R. 5611). McCarthy’s bill allowed the government to deny gun rights without charges being filed, a trial, or a conviction based merely on a prediction that you’ll someday be a terrorist.
#HR5611 allows govt to infringe your gun rights w/o charge, trial, or conviction—based merely on prediction you'll someday be a terrorist.
In the Minority Report movie, murders are predicted using three mutated humans called “Precogs” who “previsualize” crimes before they happen, thus allowing would-be murderers to be imprisoned before they kill. And while Precogs are science fiction, Republicans are working to create the next best thing in reality.
[Editor’s Note: Once upon a time gun racks were a common staple inside every other pickup truck. The menacing specter of active shooters and mass shootings that so haunts the American psyche today seemed as distant and foreign as an invasion from mars. As the article below suggests, a right of passage for many boys growing up in rural or semi-rural America includes owning a firearm, which is used for target practice and even hunting small game, if their family’s are so inclined.
This author recalls how special it was to acquire his first BB gun at age 10 (a Daisy!), and a few years later a 22 caliber rifle. The rudiments of gun safety were emphasized, and I cannot recall any shooting accidents in our community, much less willful intent to harm, that resulted in even minor firearm injuries. Fast forward 40 years. Although mass shooting fatalities today constitute a very small fraction of the overall murder rate, and violent crime in the US is considerably lower than it was 30 years ago, major media propagandize mass casualty events to such a degree vis-a-vis political leaders’ pronouncements that it is difficult not to conclude there’s much more going here than meets the eye.]
Gun Clubs at Schools
(Versus Today’s ‘Zero Tolerance’ Policies)
Charles C.W. Cooke National Review
(January 21, 2013)
Once upon a time, it was common for an American child to be packed off to school with a rifle on his back and for him to come home smiling and safe in the evening. Shooting clubs, now quietly withering away, were once such a mainstay of American high-school life that in the first half of the 20th century they were regularly installed in the basements of new educational buildings. Now, they are in their death throes, victims of political correctness, a willful misunderstanding of what constitutes “gun safety,” and our deplorable tendency toward litigiousness.
In 1975, New York state had over 80 school districts with rifle teams. In 1984, that had dropped to 65. By 1999 there were just 26. The state’s annual riflery championship was shut down in 1986 for lack of demand. This, sadly, is a familiar story across the country. The clubs are fading from memory, too. A Chicago Tribunereport from 2007 notes the astonishment of a Wisconsin mother who discovered that her children’s school had a range on site. “I was surprised, because I never would have suspected to have something like that in my child’s school,” she told the Tribune. The district’s superintendent admitted that it was now a rarity, confessing that he “often gets raised eyebrows” if he mentions the range to other educators. The astonished mother raised her eyebrows — and then led a fight to have the range closed. “Guns and school don’t mix,” she averred. “If you have guns in school, that does away with the whole zero-tolerance policy.”
In Wake of El Paso, Dayton Agency to “US-Based Domestic Violent Extremists, Perpetrators of Hate Crimes”
In the aftermath of the Dayton and El Paso mass shootings the Federal Bureau of Investigation will be looking to social media more and more in what it claims is a drive to prevent mass shootings before they occur.
“Authorities are looking at social media channels like 8chan in an effort to stop future mass shootings,” CBS News reports.
They said many attackers are inspired online with message boards and social media giving attackers the platform they seek.
“The attack in El Paso, Texas, underscores the continued threat posed by domestic violent extremists and perpetrators of hate crimes,” the FBI states in an August 4 press release, requesting the
American public to report to law enforcement any suspicious activity that is observed either in person or online.
“Many shooters spend almost two years planning their attack … Usually it’s a desire for some omnipotent control, even if its just momentary,” FBI agent Andres Simmons tells CBS News. “And there’s also a degree of desire for infamy and notoriety.”
The FBI’s announcement comes less than one week after Yahoo News reported on a Phoenix FBI Field Office Memo stating that those circulating “anti-government, identity-based and fringe political conspiracy theories” online are worthy of intensified law enforcement scrutiny because they “very likely motivate some domestic extremists to commit criminal, sometimes violent activity.”
President Trump on Sunday declared that “hate has no place in our country” after a pair of back-to-back mass shootings over the weekend rocked the nation.
“Hate has no place in our country, and we’re going to take care of it,” Trump told reporters at Morristown Airport before departing for the White House after spending the weekend at his New Jersey golf resort.
Trump’s three-minute remarks were the first the first time he spoke publicly about the deadly shootings. He ignored shouted questions about whether the El Paso shooter’s anti-immigrant manifesto shared similarities with his rhetoric and said the shootings are part of “a mental illness problem.”
The president said his White House has “done much more than most administrations” when it comes to addressing gun violence but conceded that “perhaps more has to be done.”
He said he would deliver a lengthier statement at 10 a.m. Monday. He did not answer further questions about the shooting roughly an hour later upon arriving at the White House.