WASHINGTON, D.C. – “The mass murder in Aurora, Colorado shows the need for allowing armed citizens to protect people from mass murderers, gun rights expert John M. Snyder said here today. “Those who prohibit law-abiding citizens from carrying guns for self-protection ought to be penalized,” he added.
“The recent theater shootings in which a dozen people were murdered and scores injured could have been interrupted or prevented if even a single good armed citizen was in the movies at the time, but short-sighted, narrow-minded management policy prevented this,” Snyder said.
“The movie theater anti-gun policy is idiotic,” he added. “It did not stop the crazed killer. It did eliminate the possibility of him being stopped. The theater management should be ashamed of itself. Business people and politicians who adhere to similar ways of thinking should get their heads out of the sand and see the world as it really is.
“What we really need are policies that penalize politicians and managers who undermine the right and ability of law-abiding citizens to get, carry and use the guns and ammunition they need to protect the right to life itself from the madmen and criminals who burden our society.”
Snyder recalled that, “The mass murder last year in Oslo, Norway also demonstrated that decent citizens need to be able to acquire and use firearms for the defense of their lives and the lives of their loved ones.”
He said that, “When Anders Brevik murdered 77 civilians, he used an automatic firearm, according to a police reports, even though the civilian acquisition and possession of such arms are prohibited in Norway, which generally has restrictive firearms laws.”
After the reports to police of the killing rampage, it took an hour and a half for law enforcement officials to arrive at the scene. Brevik apparently continued the killing spree until he ran out of ammunition.
“What all this tells us is that the strict Norwegian gun control laws did not prevent the mass murder,” Snyder said. “They did make it virtually impossible for a prospective armed Norwegian legally to have the gun which he or she could have used to take down the violent criminal perpetrator anytime during the 90-minute horror.”
Other incidents indicate the same truth about citizens and guns.
On November 11, 2009, Maj. Nidal Malik Hassan allegedly killed 13 people at Fort Hood, Texas and wounded many others before being stopped heroically by local police. Even though this occurred at a military base, service men and women were prevented from having the guns they could have used to stop Hassan because of a Clinton-era policy preventing American military personnel from being armed at bases in the United States.
On April 16, 2007, Seung-Hui Cho murdered 32 people and then himself at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. Even though the Commonwealth of Virginia has a law allowing individuals with a state-issued permit to carry a concealed firearm, VA Tech policy prohibits professors and students from carrying guns on campus even if they have such a permit. The policy did not stop Cho, but it did prevent anyone from being able legally to stop Cho.
In 2010, the Al-Qaeda linked Internet magazine Inspire encouraged lone wolf militant Islamist terrorists to go into restaurants in downtown Washington, D.C. during the lunch hour, and fire away at diners in the hopes of killing a number of people, including federal employees. Washington, D.C. prohibits even law-abiding citizens from carrying firearms. The powers-that-be there render law-abiding citizens defenseless in the face of a potential mass-murdering terrorist.
Contrast these incidents with the January 16, 2002 incident at the Appalachian Law School in Grundy, Virginia when two students with guns stopped what could have been a mass murder when they tackled a culprit after he had killed three people.
Consider, too, the October 1, 1997 incident in Pearl, Mississippi, when an assistant principal at a high school went to his car, got his gun and shot the murderer of two students.
Recall the April 24, 1998 time in Edinboro, Pennsylvania when a bystander pointed a shotgun at the murderer of a teacher when he stopped to reload.
Snyder said, “The message is clear. Gun laws do not stop mass murder. Citizens armed with guns do. Guns save lives.
“As a matter of fact, citizens with guns stop crime two and a half million times a year, according to Professor Gary Kleck, Ph.D. of the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Florida State University in Tallahassee.”
“The word is getting around,” Snyder said. “Anti-gun policies do not stop crime. Decent citizens with guns do. Public and private policies should reflect this.”