Connect with us

Guns and Crime

Ghost guns: “A crisis!”

Published

on

Ghost guns A crisis

The Law of the Bureaucrat states that for every perceived problem there is a rule that can solve it. Supposedly having a gun with no serial numbers makes it impossible to solve crimes. After all, the serial number is exactly like the VIN on your car. If you have the number, you can somehow find the owner in a database somewhere. That will lead you to the criminal. Hence, the rule that manufacturers must put serial numbers on guns.

Right.

I got a hunting rifle for my birthday. It has a serial number. If it somehow gets used in a crime (not by me!) there’s no guaranteed way to use that number for anything except to identify when and where it was manufactured. The police might even learn that I bought it. That’s it. The criminal who stole it won’t be identified, for the simple reason that he stole it.

Duh!

There’s no database of serial numbers and owners. But suppose that we start registering every gun sale in a permanent record tomorrow. That won’t do anything for the hundreds of millions of guns that Americans already own. And it’s not going to do anything to help identify the stolen guns used in crime. And almost every gun crime is committed with a stolen gun.

So how do the police solve crimes? They find the weapons used in crime, fire bullets through them, and compare marks on the bullets and shell casings with evidence from the crime. Yes, they do try to discover the original purchaser, but since that person rarely commits the crime, that’s little real help. After all, what good did it do to learn that the Las Vegas shooter bought his weapons over several years? He was a lawful purchaser. And he had already suffered the death penalty.

One could propose a complete ban on guns, but that has been proven useless. Chicago plants a citizen every eighteen hours, and guns are all but illegal in private hands there. Gang-bangers get them anyway. Guns and knives are illegal in prisons, but prisoners figure out how to make them. The criminal mind is always a step ahead of law enforcement.

So what’s the big deal about an AR-15 with no serial number? Have ghost guns been used in lots of crime? The Wall Street Journal lists three crimes in four years. Surely that’s an epidemic in the context of over 12,000 murders a year. Of course we need to go ballistic over three criminals. A total of ten killed in four years is definitely worthy of hyperventilation when Chicago loses that many every week with stolen guns.

Don’t get me wrong. Every wrongful death is a tragedy. But when we are obsessing over less than one tenth of one percent of murders in order to create rules that only law-abiding citizens – who don’t commit crimes! – will obey, we’re barking up the wrong tree. We need to be dealing with the other 99.9% of the murders. When we have saved those lives, then it may be worth our efforts to save the remaining few.

It is immoral to spend scarce resources on even scarcer problems. It is even more reprehensible to spend them on solutions that don’t offer any realistic promise of success. Remember that every gun investigation starts with a gun in hand. If that gun has no serial number, either because it never had one or because it has been filed off by the criminal, the rest of the investigation isn’t materially changed. Fingerprints, DNA, and ballistic data will build the case. Those are far more likely to provide useful information than any serial number.

Serial numbers are applied by manufacturers to allow quality control. They have developed a secondary use in identifying the date of manufacture, either to allow purchase of proper spare parts or to establish value in old and rare models. They were never designed for criminal investigations, and are generally a poor tool in them.

To allow “ghost guns” to be the subject of legislative action is an example of magical thinking. Somehow, the good intentions will make life safer. But reality teaches us that we must take action that actually addresses real problems.

Ted Noel MD is a Board Certified Anesthesiologist with 36 years of experience. He produces a video blog on current political subjects weekly at www.VidZette.com.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Steve

    January 9, 2018 at 12:10 pm

    Stopping people from making guns is impossible. Guns are just relatively simple machines. You might as well try to stop somebody from building a model airplane. There isn’t much difference. If commercial manufacturers can make guns then others can learn to make guns. It’s not magic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Everything

We still want answers Las Vegas Shooting investigation

Published

on

We still want answers Las Vegas Shooting investigation

I don’t claim to be the biggest expert on the Las Vegas Shooting, but the lack of answers and results from this investigation is truly scary. Think about it, a major mass murder and months later we know nominally more information than we knew a week after the incident. The media, relatively silent on what should have been a news story stretching on for months. I supposed they think Donald Trump is more interesting to the masses, but I disagree. Matt Walsh noted that his article “WALSH: 58 People Were Killed In Las Vegas, We Still Don’t Know Why Or How, And Nobody Cares” was read by over 100000 people in a matter of days. We Americans are quite interested in finding answers. Perhaps we aren’t going about getting the answers the right way, because we are relying on journalist to revive and “old” news story, and a corrupt FBI to report details on the investigation. As citizens, we might be sitting on our hands. But the lack of transparency and answers serves to only worsen the situation. At the very least, this is incompetence. At the very most, it’s a cover up. Both are unacceptable.

I am making bold accusations, but many fishy signs about the lack of information point to the lack of information we have about Stephen Paddock’s stay at Mandalay Bay. Small stories trickle but no major insight have we yet seen.

The Las Vegas Review Journal is doing a good job maintaining dialog about the Las Vegas Shooting. They published this article on January 5th. Here are some of the highlights:

Mandalay Bay staff interacted with Las Vegas shooter more than 10 times in days before Oct. 1

“Mandalay Bay staff, room service and housekeeping had contact with Paddock or entered his suite more than 10 times over the course of his stay, including the three days leading up to October 1,” an MGM Resorts spokesperson said in an email.

Several media outlets questioned whether Mandalay Bay staff would have noticed the dozens of weapons and thousands of rounds of ammunition Paddock had brought to his room had they checked on him. But Mandalay Bay staff had made multiple contacts with Paddock and had entered his room at least once, according to the MGM Resorts statement.

“As a result of these interactions, there was no need to conduct a welfare check,” the MGM statement said.

 “All MGM Resorts properties follow a health and welfare check operating procedure that stipulates a welfare check be performed after two consecutive days where a do-not-disturb sign has been displayed on the door and the guest has not interacted in-person or by phone with housekeeping or other hotel staff over the same period,” the email from MGM said.

Government Inefficiency?

Review Journal: FBI chief says report on Las Vegas shooting expected by anniversary

FBI investigation by the numbers

—400 specialists brought in

—1500 leads followed locally, 500 worldwide

—400 people interviewed about the gunman

—40 terabytes of data collected

—22,000 hours of video collected

—250,000 images collected

—14 days to comb through the 15-acre festival site

—13 days to collect evidence inside Mandalay Bay

—12 federal search warrants filed

—500 grand jury subpoenas issued

I can’t help but suspect this will just be Warren Commission 2.0. That’s a lot of data, a lot of people, and a lot of leads from which to gather more information. Unless there are other people involved and still free, withholding so much knowledge is irresponsible, only providing fodder for bad conspiracy theories and public distrust. If Stephen Paddock truly acted alone, providing a coherent timeline on the Las Vegas Shooting and events leading up to it, should have been done by now. Is the government being incompetent, inefficient, or hiding something? At very least, the FBI should answer key questions and publish its report in full detail later on.

Las Vegas culture

TruePundit would have you think that Andrew McCabe is behind all of this. I don’t trust TruePundit, but its hard not to take their articles into minor consideration. McCabe is a corrupt figure, but being involved is a stretch. However, after the Walsh article came out, I was reminded of the old saying “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” This may reveal why we don’t have the answers we need. MGM International Resorts is one of the most powerful companies in Las Vegas, and their Mandalay Bay so happened to be the crime scene. Now it’s possible for some nefarious reason they want to withhold as much information as they can. Hotels/ Casinos in Las Vegas are notoriously well monitored. TruePundit published an article on January 9th, claiming that:

“No one has seen that on the video we were provided by MGM,” a FBI source said. “Vegas (PD) has looked at the same video. Paddock is on surveillance video but the guns are not. He’s not carrying bags or cases with rifles.”

How did more than 12 assault rifles get into Paddock’s hotel suite then?

FBI sources noted that there could in fact be video proof of Paddock transporting a dozen guns and thousands of rounds of ammunition to his 32nd-floor hotel suite in Mandalay Bay but MGM Resorts International, who owns the hotel, could be hiding the video.

“They (MGM) control the surveillance video,” one FBI source said. “I have never seen that in any other case. We (the FBI) control the physical evidence.”

Paddock supposedly stayed as a guest at Mandalay Bay for several days prior to his alleged role in the rampage which gunned down over 500 people, including 58 who were killed. Yet, FBI sources show no video of him transporting guns to the 32nd floor?

I don’t trust anonymous sources, even if they are saying something with a reasonable possibility of being true. However, this could also be the reason as to why with 22000 hours of video basic questions have gone unanswered. The more credible Las Vegas Review Journal published details on a lawsuit filed against Mandalay Bay, among others, for gross negligence and even instances of wrongful death. Perhaps, Mandalay Bay would like to not pay millions in a lawsuit for something that smells profusely of gross negligence. This is preferable to believe as opposed to the ugly conspiracy theories out there.

The Silence

The Review Journal article got some conversation going, but we are still far from where we need to be. I’m going to quote Matt Walsh on this

In fairness, some media outlets have sued the FBI to gain access to information about the shooting, but they could put more pressure on the Powers That Be if they actually reported on the story and asked this question publicly. Or this question:

How did he do it? We know he used a gun. Or guns. He had dozens of guns in the hotel room with him. How did he get them all in there? How did he set up a kill room in a major American hotel without anyone noticing? How did he manage to shoot hundreds of people from 500 yards away at night? Was he trained? Where did he train? Who trained him?

We cannot allow ourselves to become complacent on the issue allowing several questions to go unanswered. As I noted in my previous article on the Las Vegas Shooting is so tragic, it’s had a ripple effect of other victims. More people are dying and I imagine the lack of information available fails to mitigates the tragedy at all. Thus it is all the more important to keep up the conversation.

#BoycottMandalayBay to make some noise?

The Las Vegas Review Journal has done a tremendous job, but others should step it up, too. Mandalay Bay only answered a handful of questions in for their January 5th article, leaving other key questions unaddressed. Mandalay Bay already seems to be hurting from the fallout of the shooting, but perhaps people voicing a boycott could get the Las Vegas Shooting trending again. To me, this beats waiting nine more months to get answers. I spitball ideas because the public has waited long enough for answers. There is a good possibility that Mandalay Bay is hiding information, as well as the FBI and LVMPD.

Possibility of New Information

Another recent story was tweeted by Craig Fiegener as well.

On January 16th, we may get more information about Stephen Paddock. A court hearing is scheduled to possibly unseal the findings of the exercised search warrants. What is currently known about the search warrants are that the police obtained text messages dating back at least a year on seven phones Stephen Paddock had. This may be our only chance for a long while, and we can only hope that the media lawyers bring their A game.

Closing Thoughts

I find it highly unnecessary to wait until the Warren Commission 2.0 comes out with their report in October. We the people need answers. Local media is doing some investigative journalism but we as citizens all need not remain silent over the Las Vegas Shooting. 58 people died and it’s still a mystery to the public. We need to vocalize our dissatisfaction with the FBI, LVMPD, and Mandalay Bay over the information they have withheld from us and perhaps a false narrative they have perpetuated. Don’t forget. Never forget. Keep the conversation going. Let us not relent again.

Continue Reading

Guns and Crime

The Black community and gun ownership

Published

on

The Black community and gun ownership

The Second Amendment to our U.S. Constitution says; “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

In pure and simple language that should be made loud and clear that law-abiding citizens regardless of pigmentation have the right to defend themselves from those who would do harm to them and to their country.

The right to keep and bear arms has been under assault for a very long time and not just with the current crop of gun-grabbers of today. According to a video hosted by Dana Loesch via NRA TV, she points out that gun control at the founding of our nation was for the purpose of keeping guns out of the hands of blacks and even other minorities. I do strongly believe in the right to own firearms is not limited to just white guys and gals.

Gun control is not about controlling guns or gun control itself. It is about control over people… period.

Julia Craven of the progressive-leaning HuffPost wrote a story in which they interviewed 11 black gun owners. Not all of them are conservative right-wing Republicans. One of the gun-owners highlighted calls herself a “Southern liberal.” Our media might still paint these gun-owners as gang bangers or whatever and even the HuffPost might give you that impression of these black gun owners at first. Sadly I think the media promoted the Hip-Hop culture as just another way to demoralize blacks without the impression that they are being demoralized. No different than progressives moving away from slavery to government-sponsored and subsidized enslavement.

If we are for liberty and freedom, we must promote guns rights for all. Liberty and freedom must be promoted for all humans, the only true race.

Reference

Why Black People Own Guns

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/black-gun-ownership_us_5a33fc38e4b040881bea2f37Before the Revolutionary War, colonial Virginia passed a law barring black people from owning firearms — an exercise in gun control as racial control. In 1857, in his notorious Dred Scott decision, Chief Justice Roger Taney summoned the specter of black people freely enjoying the right to “keep and carry arms wherever they went.” Surely, he argued, the founders were not “so forgetful or regardless of their own safety” to permit such a thing. When black people armed themselves against white supremacist attacks following the Civil War, Southern state governments passed “black codes” barring them from owning guns. After the Black Panthers open carried to signal to California police officers that they would defend themselves against racial attacks in the late ’60s, then-Gov. Ronald Reagan signed a state ban on open carry into law.

How ‘Crazy Negroes’ With Guns Helped Kill Jim Crow

http://reason.com/archives/2014/07/22/how-crazy-negroes-with-guns-heI have a dream that one day children in seventh grade will have an American history textbook that is not like my son’s. Its heroes will not just be people from the past who upheld the middle-class values of modesty, chastity, sobriety, thrift, and industry. The rebels it celebrates will include not only abolitionists, suffragists, labor unionists, and civil rights leaders who confined their protests to peaceful and respectable writing, speaking, striking, and marching. In my dream, schoolchildren will read about people like C.O. Chinn.

Continue Reading

Guns and Crime

Book Review: The ABC’s of Guns

Published

on

Book Review The ABCs of Guns

Yehuda Remer, author of the incredibly important book Safety On: An Introduction to the World of Firearms for Children, and of the parody book Ten Little Liberals, delves back into the world of firearms with his new book, The ABC’s of Guns.

The book, supported by the Second Amendment Foundation, takes each letter of the alphabet and places a picture of a gun-related object or idea on each page corresponding to that letter. It is an entertaining way to learn about firearms and their different accessories, and gives the reader an easy memory tool to remember them through their corresponding alphabet letters.

The ABC’s of Guns also gives a parent who wants to teach his or her child about firearms a fresh take and a great opportunity to educate through the alphabetical memory tool. The book gives a similar mnemonic that many of us have used in school to remember different subjects in order to teach about firearms and their components.

For example: “A” is for “ammunition,” “B” is for “barrels,” and so on. The book continues on this way for every letter of the alphabet.

The ABC’s of Guns, while it is primarily a children’s’ book, can also be a fun coffee-table-style book for adults. It can serve as a fun conversation starter for a group of adults to brush up of their gun knowledge together.

Hanukkah and Christmas may have passed, but it is still a perfect gift for any parent who wants to teach or any child who wants to learn about firearms and the world of guns.

The ABC’s of Guns is available on Amazon.

Follow Jeremy Frankel on Twitter @frankeljeremy .

Continue Reading

NOQ Report Daily

Advertisement

Facebook

Twitter

Advertisement

Trending

Copyright © 2017 NOQ Report.