Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Again, just a little common sense and restraint; A debate is ok; And a few other notes

I was on to something early.

I understand the complexities of covering something as uneasy as the Newtown tragedy. There is no right/wrong answer. But as I said last week, common sense and restraint is always a good method. One would hope it would apply here.

On another issue...

This is a media blog but occasionally we step aside and allow for debate. For the past few days many of you have come here to vent and opine. That's cool. A good debate isn't bad. It's a part of a healthy civilization and democracy. I'm sorry if it took an insane thing like the Newtown tragedy to bring forth this debate. But the very act of a civil discourse is OK. It's calming, it at least opens up dialogue and allows for all of us; even those of us who are passionate about what we believe and what we don't believe to assert our position. We don't all have to agree. That's OK, but this gun thing has touched a nerve. Even the most hardened gun-control critics have said it's time to explore other options. I agree.

And yes, it's not simply guns. Of course it's also about mental health and related topics. But at least the dialogue has begun. And that's a positive sign amid the grim background.

*Am I the only one who found it odd that the president conducted a news conference on Wednesday about the idea of beginning legislation resulting from the Newtown massacre and then many reporters began asking questions about the fiscal cliff? Sure, a big topic, but somehow felt out of place given the circumstances. Eventually, a question about Newtown emerged. Should have been the first question.

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  1. Rich, it's too early for the pres to discuss legislation regarding gun rights. The libs are still hysterical and overcome with their feelings of sweetness and will produce knee jerk regulations with unintended consequences. BHO wants to make the most of an opportunity, just like the media. A rational discussion is still months away, but the world ends on Friday, so...

    The fiscal cliff is in the cross hairs and has a deadline. If not dealt with, the mental health budget, which is partly to blame for killing sprees, will suffer involuntary cuts as will all services.

    1. @9:56
      Remarkably foolish to claim "the libs are still hysterical and overcome with their feelings of sweetness." Suppose that means that you are indifferent to the slaughter of 26 innocent young children and their teachers. Congratulations on being immune to human feelings.

      Yes, of course if we act now, there could be unintended consequences, like it would be harder for unstable nuts and people like yourself getting your hands on dangerous weapons.

      And a special congratulations for using gun imagery when referring to the fiscal cliff being "in the cross hairs." Of course you don't want anyone taking away your weapons when you view the world through a gun-sight. Is it surprising that innocent people become targets?

    2. Y'idiot! "overcome with their feelings of sweetness"??? While, what, you've moved on? Human much?

    3. I'm sympathetic to the victims, not the libs, and pragmatic about the process to find a workable solution to the rampage situation....not mutually exclusive thoughts. I support tighter restrictions on assault weapons and am an NRA member. That said, the pacifists won't get their way to have all guns banned. It's misguided and the implications would be far worse. I don't have a good example to demonstrate irrational judgement, I have a great one! GWB invades Iraq following 9/11...not Afghanistan. How bout them apples.

      You, 11:15, really ARE hysterical and need to have your weapon of mass destruction taken away...foolish legislation. Am I surprised that "innocent people become targets"? Not at all, it's no coincidence that the perpetrators deliberately select or at least gravitate to venues with unarmed civilians.

      11:17...Alex, I'd like incomplete thoughts for 500 please.

    4. 9:56

      "A rational discussion is still months away" ?????
      A rational discussion on what? Taking weapons of war out of our neighborhoods? Sheeeesh!

    5. @9:56
      Everyone is hysterical except for you. Great! If you're so sure of yourself what would prompt you to ridicule those WHO ARE upset by this horrendous event? Why do you need to make an anonymous statement of bravado if you aren't really a scared, little person.

    6. By the way Hilary Clinton is faking her concussion.
      She trying to avoid testifying before Congress.
      Typical of a liberal democrat.
      It's all a fake. No truth to the illness. NONE!

  2. Rich, no offense but there are millions of unemployed whose benefits will run out on December 29th, 2012 unless an extension is granted via the fiscal cliff negotiations. As tragic as the Newtown story is there are literally millions who will have no income in less than ten days. That is huge and they should not be thrown to the back of the line because of the tragedy.

    1. I have to respectfully disagree. This is not meant to play down the importance of the fiscal cliff negotiations but this news conference was called to specifically talk about opening dialog on gun control laws and improving mental health services and like Rich I was surprised that the various reporters chose to move away from that topic with their questions.

    2. Hard to believe this administration didn't have full control of who was going to be called on and what question they were going to ask.

    3. @ 12:29: As tragic as the Newtown shooting is, the fiscal cliff angle affects millions of people and is newsworthy. Americans have such short attention spans that they seem to be able to deal with only one issue at a time. Newtown has dominated for five days, fiscal cliff questions were appropriate even if the press conference was about Lieberman Live. You can't deal with two subjects at the same time?
      By the way, the lunatic Michael Savage just started his show by blaming Satanism for the mass murder. He stated that we need more crosses and God in the classrooms to prevent violence. He took a page out of the Christine Craft asperger's angle and took it a step further. Guns don't kill people, Satanists kill people....oy vey! Just when you think Savage is sane he goes off the rails and goes psycho...

  3. Hello People! We need gun control now! We need to talk about limiting the use of guns in this country NOW! I'm frankly tired of this small core of fanatic members of the NRA, (which doesn't even represent most of the rank and core files of that organization), intimidating the US Congress and Senate with their agenda. Who the in the name of Sam Hell are these people anyway, and what gives them the right to dictate their extremist agenda to the rest of this country?

    And please, no more of this blather about "guns don't kill people, people kill people." Yeah, so Adam Lanza could have gone into that school and killed 27 people with his bare hands, or with a knife? yeah right! Wake up and smell the coffee gun nuts!

    We also don't happen to live in the 18th century anymore, where a 'free militia' didn't mean individual people, but meant a hastily assembled army that was at the ready to repel the British or angry native Americans. The effort to twist and turn those words: "a free militia" into "the right of the individual" is not fooling anyone anymore. You've strained everyone's credulity long enough!

    I had a good friend who was killed by the nut about 20 years ago on California street in downtown SF. His wife worked closely with Senator Feinstein to get a ban passed on assault weapons. He left behind not only his wife but two beautiful kids who have grown up without a father. Shame on our Senate and Congress for not renewing the assulat weapons ban eight years ago!. I hope that one of the few good things that will come out of this horrible tragedy in
    Connecticut is that some stringent gun laws will be passed so that more parents, wives, husbands, sons and daughters don't have to go through this kind of trauma in the future.

    But oh, I forgot...your rights to owning a gun are more important! What a selfish, short sided, stupid argument! No wonder this country is going to the dogs!

  4. The questions about the fiscal cliff were because the reporters were letting everyone know that they had moved on and believed the cliff was more important than Newtown no matter what their readers/viewers thought. For the reporters, they're over Newtown. Arrogance, much? So much for the big lie that media gives people what they want.

    As for 9:56: This is exactly the kind of indifference toward human life on the part of gun entusiasts that makes it nearly impossible to discuss intelligently anything to do with guns. This person refers to reactions of horror and outrage about the cold blooded killing of 26 people as hysteria and feelings of sweetness. This person is only concerned that those 26 dead people might get in the way of his gun activity. There is something nearly sociopathic about his/her comments. Just sick.

  5. Diane Fienstein has been a gun owner since 1978.
    Since George Mascone and Harvey Milk were assasinated.
    Get with it!

  6. Middle Class Working StiffDecember 19, 2012 at 10:30 PM

    I would have liked to have heard a little more humility when Jake Tapper of ABC asked the president why he took such a dive on gun violence in his first term. "I was too busy saving the economy" doesn't cut it, because, while the president was busy saving the economy, he managed to find time to sign bills allowing concealed weapons in the national parks and on Amtrak trains. It would have been nice to hear that he is rethinking the decision behind those two abject surrenders, or at least that he's too chastened to brag about them any more. He owes the Brady campaign something of an apology. We will have to see what recommendations come out, how hard the White House will push, and exactly how good this president, at the height of his popularity, is at working the levers. Of course, the very first question after his announcement was about the perils of the "fiscal cliff."

    The first question was something like, "Mr. President, are you betraying the people who voted for you by putting Social Security on the table?" Obama answered with five minutes of BS and never addressed the question directly. He's a spineless sellout, I voted for him, and I hate him for this.

  7. Calmly and well-stated, Rich. Gun control is as much a hot button issue as abortion. Want to start an argument? Ask how someone could simultaneously be so passionate about a zygote and a device to kill a person.

  8. It's immensely divisive, you are right.However there are many pro-choice gun owners and many non-religious gun owners who feel just as passionately about second amendment rights . None of the proposed legislative fixes will change anything in terms of stopping similar tragedies. People on the far idealogical left will balk when they realize that banning guns for the American citizenry means that only government,government contractors, mentally ill and criminals will have guns. On the religious right, and it's only part of the right, why did their God make this happen?

  9. I'll tell you who's putting this country in more danger than the terrorist threat and that's the gun-nut fringe. They've somwhow strong armed the NRA as well as hundreds of regional and national politicians into rolling over and buying into warped sense of reality. For instance, this garbage about California doesn't need a new assault weapons ban.

    And they love to cling to the second amendment, in which they twist the words to make an argument for gun ownership.

    Wait until you have a friend or relative who is killed in one of these horrific episodes by some nut case like that guy who shot those poor kids in Connecticut, and you survivalist freaks might be singing a different tune!

    Contrary to what you say, Guns DO kill people. Guns can't just go jump off the counter and shoot someone! You need some nut to pull the trigger!