Letters to editor

Look closer at murder statistics

By From page A7 | January 24, 2013

The president asked Congress to come up with a comprehensive plan to help stop gun violence. There have been a lot of people here asking why we need “assault” weapons. I think we need to look at the facts of murders in the United States.The numbers come from the FBI website for 2011. The 2012 numbers are not out yet.

According to the FBI, in 2011, there were 12,623 murders in the United States, 1,790 murders in California. A total of 6,220 were murdered by a handgun, 866 in California. A total of 323 were murdered by rifle, 45 in California. There were 356 murdered by shotgun, 50 in California. And there were 1,684 murdered by an unknown type of firearm, 259 in California.

There were 1,694 by knives or cutting instruments, 261 in California. Also, there were 1,659 other weapons (hammers, baseball bats, tire irons, etc.), 208 in California. And 728 murdered by hands, fist, feet – this category includes being pushed – and 101 in California.

Don’t trust me, look them up for yourself. As for the “assault” weapons. They look like military weapons, so they look scary. It is cosmetics. True assault weapons have a selector switch that allows you to go from safe to semi-auto to full auto, they are scary. The difference between an AR-15 and a .223 varmint rifle is cosmetics, but the AR gets the bad press. Learn about guns before you condemn them.

Instead of looking at rifles, we should be looking at all those violent video games that our kids play every day. The violent movies and actors like Jamie Foxx who star in them and say how great it is to kill people and directors like Quentin Tarantino who make them. We need to find ways to help the mentally ill person. We need to make our schools more secure, not fish bowls where a deranged person can do what he wants.

Edward A. Doolin


Letter to the Editor


Discussion | 13 comments

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  • rlw895January 18, 2013 - 10:11 pm

    Good letter. How about taxing guns, ammo, video games, junk food and such things to pay for mental illness prevention and treatment? If you're willing to go there, I'm willing to forget about banning "military-style" long guns that are internally different though cosmetically similar. What about magazine capacity?

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  • Mr. PracticalJanuary 24, 2013 - 7:43 am

    rlw, wouldn't that be a bit redundant since the Affordable Care Act alledgedly provides mental health benefits paid for by new taxes?

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  • Mr. PracticalJanuary 24, 2013 - 7:49 am

    BTW... I don't believe Obama would allow taxing video games and junk food as that would affect lower income households disproportionately and break his promise to not raise taxes for those making too much money (over $250k a year).

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  • rlw895January 24, 2013 - 11:18 am

    We won't know until someone asks--or insists.

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  • rlw895January 24, 2013 - 11:19 am

    You can always do more. Earmarked money should be in addition to and not supplant other funding for the ACA.

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  • Edward A DoolinJanuary 24, 2013 - 1:27 am

    Of all of the violence and killing in movies and television, I am sorry for selecting Jamie Foxx and Quentin Tarantino. I am a bigot.

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  • VallejoanJanuary 24, 2013 - 6:00 am

    As long as firearms remain legal, taxing or otherwise limiting ammo is a bad idea. One of the pillars of gun safety is knowing how to use your gun properly which requires practice, practice, practice. Which requires LOTS of ammo. What some legislator might consider "stockpiling," a gun owner may consider "a good day's practice at the range."

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  • rlw895January 24, 2013 - 11:30 am

    OK, let's just make firearms illegal then.

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  • rlw895January 24, 2013 - 11:43 am

    But seriously folks, my suggesting taxing guns and ammo--and other related things--for mental health care is to take the pressure off making such things illegal or regulated out of existence. It's a compromise solution. The idea for ammo would be a relatively small tax, like a sales tax, that would not be too burdensome. I don't know how much ammo is sold nationally in a year, but my guess is a small tax would be enough to raise a lot of funds to get people who need mental health care identified early and into treatment. Freedom is not free.

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  • rlw895January 24, 2013 - 11:33 am

    How about also taxing movies that get an R rating for violence? That would be an interesting First Amendment case, but if it could be done, it moviemakers might try to rein it in a little.

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  • FibberJanuary 24, 2013 - 7:25 pm

    You guys are a hoot! If it moves, tax it. If it stands still, tax it. If it's good, bad, or indifferent, tax it. Tax, tax, tax 'em till they die.

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  • rlw895January 25, 2013 - 12:56 pm

    Your exaggerations don’t make a point. This more like a use tax. And I find a hoot people whose answer to bad times is to cut taxes, and for good times is to cut taxes too.

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  • Question for Solano residents?January 24, 2013 - 7:17 pm

    Which of these 2 Taxpayer Funded places on December 14, 2012 was it LEGAL in America to kill 20 innocent children? Sandy Hook Elementary or the New Haven Planned Parenthood Clinic?

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