USA Today reports another school related shooting today at approx. 2 pm (EST) in Christiansburg, VA.:
“The shooting happened (today, Friday, April 12, 2013) in a community college branch at the New River Valley Mall, not far from Virginia Tech. An 18-year-old community college student was charged with wounding two women with a shotgun at a mall branch of the school in southwestern Virginia Friday afternoon.”
Note that this shooter did not use a semi-automatic weapon, he used a completely legal shotgun.
One particular sentence in the USA Today story caught my attention:
“A man using a public computer in the mall told ‘The Roanoke Times’ that he saw the a man with a gun walk into the college lobby and point his weapon at a woman. He ran and did not see the shooting.”
If this witness, or some other person who saw this kid carry a shotgun into the mall, was trained to carry and use a weapon, he would more than likely not have run and allowed what could have been another mass shooting to continue. The shooting could have been averted.
Therein is the basic message that the NRA and other 2nd Amendment groups are attempting to relay to the media, the government and the public: ‘more guns in the trained hands of normal citizens = fewer innocent lives lost or put in jeopardy.’
In this case no one was killed and the shooter surrendered immediately to the first uniforms on site (Mall security officers) but it could have turned out a lot differently. Hypothetically, if this particular shooter had been confronted in the mall parking lot or in the mall itself by a legally armed and trained citizen, before he got to the college office, he may have laid down his gun and saved two innocent college employees the pain and expense of being shot and hospitalized. Had this unstable young man not laid down his weapon when confronted by a legally armed and trained citizen he may have been justifiably wounded or killed with no innocent lives jeopardized.
Most states (with the sad exception of Illinois (also Washington D.C.)) have some form of licensing procedure that would allow willing and stable adults to carry a concealed weapon but instead of encouraging this and focusing on the innocent lives this could save, the media and the gun grabbers are focusing on regulations that will deter responsible gun ownership. Their misguided theory is that legal gun ownership by people who have proven themselves to be responsible citizens and who are willing to help law enforcement stop criminals, is inherently dangerous and even reckless. All this attitude is doing (and has done) is to make criminals and other unstable people feel safer and to embolden them.
Ironically, Illinois, the one state that allows virtually NO citizens to carry guns, is one of the highest crime states in the country. Wonder why?