Brady Bill

The Urgency Of Gun Control Legislation To Stop “War Zone” Syndrome, And Save Multitude Of Lives, While Preserving Reasonable Gun Rights

The shock of the Las Vegas Massacre, following the Orlando Pulse Massacre, the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre, and so many others, demands the attention of Congress, as the urgency of gun control legislation presents itself.

We must stop the “War Zone” Syndrome that has led to more deaths by domestic terrorists than on September 11, if one counts all the death since 2001.

No one is saying that the Second Amendment should be destroyed, although it is clear that the Founding Fathers did not intend for all citizens to have firearms, as the amendment discusses a “well regulated militia”, and not the concept of everyone carrying firearms, even those who are mentally ill or have had criminal convictions.

But to demand a return of the Brady Bill, named after Ronald Reagan’s Press Secretary, James Brady, permanently disabled by the Assassination attempt against Reagan in 1981, but not renewed under George W. Bush in 2004, is not to ask too much.

To demand that background checks be done on gun purchasers; that loopholes that allow people to buy weapons online and at Walmarts and at gun shows without any search about their backgrounds be ended; that mentally disturbed people not be allowed to purchase weapons; and that the concept of allowing the expansion of gun silencers legislation, allowing gun owners to be able to fire at will without any sound being made for the potential victims to be aware of the sounds so they could duck or evade; or other reasonable measures, should be seen as sensible.

We have the highest gun violence rate of any Western civilized nation, comparing to Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, and we must work to lower the death rate from suicide as well as violence against innocent civilians.

This should not be a partisan issue, as the Republicans, as well as the Democrats, need to see the issue of public safety as their major responsibility, and the National Rifle Association and its despicable leadership including Wayne La Pierre, who only are concerned with profits, must be defeated in their effect on our government policies.

All kinds of activities are licensed in our society, and guns need to be regulated in a responsible manner.

More Gun Deaths Since 1968 Than War Deaths In All Of American History!

The crazy lack of gun control, in the midst of the growing level of violence in America in the past half century is a sign of a massive crisis that Congress, under Republican leadership, refuses to deal with, due to the dominating influence of the National Rifle Association and its public spokesman, Wayne La Pierre, who has blood on his hands, as the NRA even opposed basic background checks, or denying people on the Transportation Security Administration Watch List for airline passengers the right to purchase firearms!

This is total insanity, particularly after the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre in 2012; all of the mass shootings since then; and the newly fresh San Bernadino, California Massacre two days ago!

A particular statistic that is a sign of the reality of this crisis is what Hillary Clinton said yesterday, that we are losing 90 people every day to gun violence!

But also, the statistic that since 1968, nearly 1.5 million Americans have died from gun violence, while ALL war deaths in all of American history total, by comparison, only close to 1.2 million people!

So in the past 47 years, 300,000 more Americans have died than all war deaths in the American Revolution; the War of 1812; the Mexican War; the Civil War; the Spanish American War; World War I; World War II; the Korean War;  the Vietnam War; the Persian Gulf War; the Afghanistan War; and the Iraq War!

How much longer can this nation suffer under refusal to do anything to deal with this disaster, which if a health crisis due to disease, would have led to rapid federal action to resolve the issue?

What will convince Congress, and particularly the Republican Party, to react?  Will the tragedy of harm to the President, Vice President, or Presidential candidates, or any other public figures, due to lack of action and concern, even lead to changes, as we had the Brady Bill, a decade after the assassination attempt against President Ronald Reagan, which was allowed to expire in 2004 by lack of action by President George W. Bush?

Will ANY tragedy lead to action?  Right now, it seems unlikely, crazy as that concept is!

The Best Hope For The Republican Party For 2016: Governor John Kasich Of Ohio!

It is becoming very clear that the best hope for the Republican Party to regain the White House in 2016 is NOT Jeb Bush, is NOT Chris Christie, is NOT Rand Paul, is NOT Scott Walker and is NOT anyone else being considered other than the sitting Governor of Ohio, John Kasich.

Of all of the potential GOP candidates for the Presidency, it is John Kasich who has the most distinguished record of accomplishments, who has made very few flubs or blunders, who has avoided making stupid statements up to the present, who has come across as a serious possibility from the state that is the ultimate “swing” state, Ohio.

NO Republican President has won office without winning Ohio, and from 1868 to 1923, there were SIX Republican Presidents from Ohio—Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford Hayes, James Garfield, William McKinley, William Howard Taft, and Warren G. Harding.

The Republican National Convention will be in Cleveland, and what could be more dramatic than nominating the sitting Governor of Ohio in Ohio?

Kasich has the most years of experience of anyone on the Republican side, having 18 years in Congress, and risen to the Chairmanship of the House Budget Committee, before leaving Congress, being an anchor for awhile on Fox News Channel, then working on Wall Street, before winning two terms as Governor of the “Buckeye” state.

No one is trying to claim that Kasich has made no mistakes, but compared to everyone else in the race, Kasich is the highest quality. While in Congress, he supported the Brady Assault Weapons Ban legislation and angered the National Rifle Association. He angered Tea Party groups by accepting Medicaid expansion, one of a very few Republican governors who have done that.

Kasich has worked against abortion rights, and has been shown to be anti union, typical of Republicans on the other hand, but he has also come across as an independent guy, who some have said has been influenced by the fact that his parents, killed tragically in an auto accident, were Democrats.

Kasich was considered as Bob Dole’s Vice Presidential running mate in 1996 but Jack Kemp instead was the choice of the Republican Presidential nominee. In 1999, he considered a Presidential candidacy but dropped out and endorsed George W. Bush. He could have stayed on in his Congressional seat and easily retained it, but decided after 18 years, it was time to move on. Had Dole picked him, he would have been only 44, and had he had a more serious Presidential bid in 2000, he would have been 48. Now he will be 64 in 2016, still young enough to be vibrant!

Kasich is also a reasonable man, a pleasant man, and avoids the image of arrogance and elitism that so many other Republicans exude. One can imagine a President Kasich, and if forced to do that, would be better able to live with it, as he is not a Tea Party Movement guy, not a Religious Right guy, not a libertarian! In fact, he is a bit of a skeptic about religion in politics, and has changed his religious views over his lifetime from Catholic to Anglican. He is in the mainstream of America, and is the best that the GOP has to offer, assuming former Utah Governor and Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman does not change his mind and decide to run after all!

Two Heroines Of Gun Control: Senator Diane Feinstein And Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy!

This nation is fortunate to have two heroines in Congress, ready to fight for realistic gun control in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre in Connecticut.

Senator Diane Feinstein of California and New York Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy have both known what gun violence has done, and how it has affected their lives.

Senator Feinstein became Mayor of San Francisco in 1978, after the assassination of gay Councilman Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone, and she fought for the Brady Bill’s passage in 1993-1994, named after the press secretary to President Ronald Reagan, wounded during the attempt against the President’s life in 1981 by John Hinckley. She achieved the impossible two decades ago, and the Brady Bill remained law until 2004, when President George W. Bush refused to support an extension of this gun control law. Feinstein is now willing to lead the fight for an equivalent ban nine years after the last one expired, with the horrible record of violence ever since, much of it with assault rifles and vast magazines of ammunition, something that no hunter, and no civilian, needs!

Congresswoman McCarthy lost her husband in 1993, due to violence on the Long Island Railroad, and nearly lost her son, who needed many months of rehabilitation. She lobbied for the Brady Bill, ultimately signed by President Bill Clinton, and ultimately ran against the Long Island Republican Congressman Dan Frisa when he refused to support the Brady Bill, and was elected in 1996. She has made it clear that she intends to fight for another Brady Bill, alongside Feinstein and other courageous men and women in the House and Senate, including New York Senator Chuck Schumer, who worked on the Brady Bill in the House back in 1993-1994.

These two women are indeed true heroines, and let’s hope they can accomplish their goal of a safer America, as we cannot continue to live in a nation where 11,000 to 12,000 men, women, and children are killed annually by gun violence!

Aurora, Colorado Massacre DEMANDS Action On Gun Control Measures, Despite National Rifle Association Lobbying!

The horrible tragedy, the massacre at the multiplex Century Theater in Aurora, Colorado this morning, needs to be treated as a wake up call for campaigning for strict gun control laws, similar to the Brady Bill passed under Bill Clinton, and ended under George W. Bush a decade later.

This should be an issue to unite Democrats and Republicans, but Democrats are afraid to promote gun control, as they lost control of Congress to the Republicans in 1994, with the Brady Bill being part of the reason.

Many Republicans and conservatives have the paranoid feeling that Barack Obama wishes to take away their gun rights under their interpretation of the Second Amendment.

The point is that no one is trying to say that ownership or purchase of guns should be banned, as that is impossible to accomplish, even if one wished to do that.

But after the Columbine Massacre in Colorado in 1999, the Virginia Tech Massacre in 2007, the shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Arizona, in 2011, and now this event, the worst total of victims ever in American history, it is essential to take some steps on gun control.

And to have Texas Republican Congressman Louie Gohmert, promote the insanity that if some of the people in the theater had had weapons, they could have stopped the massacre, forgetting that several people opening up fire in a theater would have led to innocent victims being killed by those “heroes”, who might very well be shooting at each other, in the midst of the chaos, is no contribution, but Gohmert is infamous for insane, reckless statements.

This is as insane as to say that it should be alright for students and faculty to have guns on campuses, or to carry weapons into a bar, where drunken patrons could begin shooting!

A level of sanity and stability needs to be addressed by President Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney in a way to bring about some legislation to cut down the level of violence, which right now makes America the most violent society in the world, with about 10,000 gun victims annually.

The 30th Anniversary Of The Attempted Assassination Of Ronald Reagan: A Time To Reconsider Stronger Gun Control Laws!

Today, March 30, thirty years ago, after only ten weeks in office, President Ronald Reagan was subjected to an assassination attempt by John Hinckley.

Reagan was seriously wounded, and without the wonders of modern medicine, would have died after what would have been the second shortest term of a President in American history, only surpassed by William Henry Harrison, who died of pneumonia from cold weather conditions on Inauguration Day, exactly one month after he became President in 1841.

Reagan is also the only President ever shot who would recover from his wounds, although former President Theodore Roosevelt, shot while campaigning for election as a Progressive in 1912 after his time in office, also recovered from his wounds.

Reagan’s shooting demonstrated the chaos and anarchy that can happen for a period of time after such a tragic event, with no one really sure who was in charge in the moments after the assassination, due to Vice President George H W Bush traveling overseas at the time, and Secretary of State Alexander Haig claiming he was in charge, when actually Speaker of the House Thomas (Tip) O’Neill technically was next in line, but Bush able to act from afar, not having to be present in the nation to be in charge.

Press Secretary James Brady suffered much greater wounds than Reagan, who fully recovered, although some wonder if he suffered mental damage that led to his later Alzheimers diagnosis after leaving the Presidency. But Brady suffered major brain damage, was paralyzed and forced to spend his life in a wheelchair, and even today, speaks in a distorted manner. But his wife, Sarah, is a true example of a loyal wife, who has stuck through thick and thin with her husband, an example of true love!

The Brady Bill for gun control finally resulted in the Clinton Administration, but was not renewed ten years later during the Bush Administration, and we have seen the dangers of lack of gun control, with the recent attempted assassination of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona in January.

We need President Obama to speak up on this issue in a much more forceful manner, and of course, we know that the National Rifle Association and the Republican Party will fight any attempt at gun control, but this is a moral cause, and the memory today of how we almost lost our 40th President thirty years ago today should sustain us in this fight!

The Urgent Need For Some Limits On The Second Amendment!

In the wake of the Tucson disaster last weekend, there is an urgent need for reasonable limits on who purchases guns, and the ability to acquire extended magazines for weapons, such as the one that allowed the perpetrator to fire 33 rounds without reloading. New York Democratic Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy, whose husband was killed on the Long Island Railroad, and whose son was wounded, in an incident in 1993, which led to her election to Congress in 1996, is proposing such a bill about the magazines.

A background check, which was part of the former Brady bill, which was the law from 1994 to 2004, needs to be reinstated.

Also, the need to ban weapons within 1,000 feet of a federal official, including members of Congress, is being proposed by Congressman Peter King, a Republican, who thinks he can get this through the House of Representatives, after this horrible tragedy in Tucson. Right now, there is legislation on the books preventing a firearm within 1,000 feet of any school.

At the same time, the thought that members of Congress might carry firearms at public events for self protection, as suggested by two members of Congress, is pure insanity, and sets a bad standard.

And the idea that universities and colleges should allow staff and faculty and students to carry firearms to prevent another incident equivalent of Virginia Tech in 2007, is also a terrible idea, and is sure to lead to more bloodshed and violence, as guns do not belong in an educational environment! 🙁