Guns don’t shoot people; Stray bullets shoot people!

Since we last discussed this about 17 days ago, Bill Adams and Charles Lake shot themselves while handling their handguns. They weren’t shottin’ intruders or varmints or nuthin’. Just holding or loading. Some guy in florida was “putting his gun away” when the 9mm went off. But bullet passed into his neighbor’s apartment and shot her while she was sleeping. A dood down in Hatchez, Mississippi woke in the middle of the night to a sound he mistook for an intruder. He shot hisself in the damn pinkie toe.

Thoze-all might have been people who knew nohting about guns, hard to say, but Jack Haning of Lubbock has been messing with guns his whole life, but he still managed to shoot himself in the leg after showing off his new handgun to his coworkers. He did not live.

James Crawford of Virginia was playing with a 9mm at a party. He thought the gun was empty so he wuz pretenging like he was shooting himself in the head but then he shot himself in the head for real. He did not live.

Maybe James Crawford was a drunk dumbass teenager with no callin’ to have a handgun, but a security guard in St Petersburg Florida who is licensed to havea gun was hidden in a small closet with two young men in the church explaining to them the safety features of his Ruger 9mm when he pulled the trigger. The bullet went through the wall and hit Hanna Kelly, the 20 year old daughter of the pastor in the head. She is in critical condition and, well, is not really expected to live. Something tells me there is more to that story than meets the eye at this particular moment.

Most of those were in the south, which makes me wonder about the south. But up oi Ohio, Wellington Roemer shot himself through the thigh and gut when his weapon discharged as he exited his vehicle. Previous to that he had posted this on facebook: “I’ll keep my money, freedom & guns, you keep the change.” with a picture of Obama.

Back in the south, in South Carolina in fact, a woman carrying a valid permitted gun in her purse shot her friend in the foot when the gun went off by itself. Though she had a permit, she was in fact not allowed to carry the gun into the mall. No word on if there will be charges, or if anyone is looking into the safety of that particular weapon which appears to, well, not be safe.

While we are on the subject of malls, a woman was shot in Jacksonville, in the arm, by a stray bullet. That may be different from all these other cases because it could have been some sort of violent crime in which an innocent bystander was shot. But I include it here because we might want to have a discussion of the utility of carrying guns around in shopping malls. If only everyone in that mall was packing, that guy who shot the woman by accident would never had pulled that gun out out of fear.

In another case of a person who should know better, a former chief of police of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, shot himself in the hand while cleaning his gun.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Twitter
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
Tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

36 Responses to Guns don’t shoot people; Stray bullets shoot people!

  1. Bob O`Bob says:

    That’s all fine, but anecdotes are not enough to call it science.

  2. Greg Laden says:

    Bob: Call what science?

  3. Ben says:

    In other news, a ton of people died in car accidents today, therefore cars should be banned.

  4. Rasmus Odinga Gambolputty de von Ausfern....of Ulm says:

    I think Bob (if he’s being serious) hasn’t followed the links beyond the Ohh Shoot page.

    I was on the couch at my parents place one day and looked over at my Dad only to see a gun barrel pointed directly at me (he was cleaning it for some unknown reason). Somehow I managed to roll up and over the back of the couch to safety, with my Dad laughing at me. “It’s not loaded”, he said. I replied that that is irrelevant, that he shouldn’t point a gun at anyone. Turns out the gun was loaded. I sure hope I don’t wind up as one of the subjects of these posts, someday.

  5. Greg Laden says:

    Ben, why do you want to ban cars and guns?

  6. Ben says:

    Greg, I assumed you making an argument against gun ownership. Perhaps I have made an ass of myself :)

  7. Greg Laden says:

    U have made an ass of u and me

  8. gwen says:

    Don’t forget the people shot every year by idiot deer hunters who mistake a gardener in their own back yard for a deer…and don’t have enough sense to know when they have left the hunting grounds and wandered onto private property…

  9. musubk says:

    In other news, a ton of people died in car accidents today, therefore cars should be banned.

    Because that’s a perfectly good analogy, given that transportation and weapons play equally important roles in day to day life.

  10. WMDKitty says:

    Can I just point out that guns DO NOT “just go off”. It takes deliberate action — pulling the trigger — to fire a gun.

  11. Tony slc says:

    Are you merely proposing stricter gun laws? Great article by the way, thanks.

  12. Greg Laden says:

    WMDKitty, there is no basis other than belief for you to say that. The gun in the woman’s purse at the mall appears to have gone off by itself. There are reports about once or twice a month of a gun going off without the trigger being pulled. I’m sure in some cases the trigger really was triggered (as it were) but not likely in all cases.

    But the thing is, you have no basis for saying this because there is not independent authorized agency that studies or keeps track of these things, because somehow having gun ownership protected by the US Constitution also causes gun manufacture, sale, distribution, ownership and use to be generally stupified. Since there is a constitutional amendment we don’t have to think.

    Tony, I support individual gun ownership but I favor the abolition of the 2nd amendment (this is a new idea of mine but so far it feels good) because I believe having a whole constitutional amendment protecting a right like this causes all sense to be driven from the minds of almost all those involved in issues such as safety.

    We don’t need a constitutional amendment to be able to own guns. This is a democracy. We can simply have it be legal, just like having beer is legal.

  13. Stan Brooks says:

    My first thought was, are Jack Haning and Wellington Roemer related? I mean really, shooting yourself in the leg with your own gun, after handling guns your “whole life”, how f-ing stupid do you have to be? Shouldn’t there be some sort of I.Q. requirement for gun ownership, like, oh, lets say, in the higher double digits? Even most criminals are smarter than these guys. And then there’s James Crawford, who doesn’t have the sense to see if the gun, presumably his own, that he’s pointing at his head, is loaded, kills himself. For which I can only say “praise Jebus”.

    As to Ben, at least one has to pass a test in order to drive a car, which most of us have to do in order to work. Isn’t it just common sense to require the same of those who want to own guns?

  14. Azkyroth says:

    In other news, a ton of people died in car accidents today, therefore cars should be banned.

    If guns were even half as regulated as cars, we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

  15. Azkyroth says:

    Can I just point out that guns DO NOT “just go off”. It takes deliberate action — pulling the trigger — to fire a gun.

    …you’ve gotta be fucking kidding me.

  16. Die Anyway says:

    I never have understood why some people insist in pointing “unloaded” firearms at friends and family members. Even if you are 200% absolutely certain that it is unloaded, even if it is half way taken apart and there are no bullets within a mile, it is still impolite to point the thing at someone. Even if it’s a one-in-a-million chance, why do it when it’s so easy not to do it?
    Well, the answer is that half the people on the world are below average in intelligence. (ok, below the mean, but it sounds better with “average”, and the point is generally the same… there are A LOT of dumb people.)

  17. Azkyroth says:

    We don’t need a constitutional amendment to be able to own guns. This is a democracy. We can simply have it be legal, just like having beer is legal.

    Alternatively, we could push for an amendment banning idiots. All we need is a 75% majo…

    …oh. Right. :/

  18. JoeBuddha says:

    What? Unloaded gun? ALL guns are loaded by definition. Anyone who doesn’t understand that is an idiot. You don’t point the disassembled BARREL of a gun at anyone, let alone a complete gun.

  19. Dan-o says:

    Darwinism at its finest I would say. Guns do not just go off unless they are cocked…that would then mean owner error. I enjoy my gun collection and intend to pass it to my children if they would enjoy it. Proper safety practices are key. NEVER point a gun, loaded or unloaded, at anything you do not intend to shot. End of story. Guns and alcohol don’t mix ever. As far as cars being deadly so we should ban them the analogy makes perfect sense unless Greg was not suggesting that in his story.

  20. Vall says:

    I see many comments with good advice. It boils down to don’t point guns at people, ever. Unless of course, you intend to shoot them.

    To those of you that think pulling the trigger is the only way to get a gun to fire, you will be featured in stories like these one day.

    With a hand gun, you probably won’t experience a hot barell, but it isn’t impossible. That is just one example of expending a round without pulling the trigger. Gunpowder is unstable by design, on purpose, you know, intentionally meant to explode when disturbed. So is it out of the realm of reason to expect it to do just that?
    There are also guns with electric primers, so yes, an electric charge can set off the powder. Gun makers do a pretty good job of controlling all the variables, except the stoopid monkey they sell it to.

    I’m not anti-gun. I’m more afraid of being hit by a giant SUV with a cellphone driver. A lot more Newtons and Joules involved.

    • Dan-o says:

      Azkyroth, were you never allowed to shoot a bb gun or 22 at camp when you were a kid. You missed out on some great times & lessons about how to use a gun correctly. Seems like you think guns are the devils works for some reason when it is the people that are dangerous. As far as I know you can not purchase a gun without a back ground check & this takes a couple days. This also helps as a cooling off period for those impulse buyers. As far as electric primer guns I would like to see the percentage of all guns that have this style of primer, second have they ever gone off & killed/injured someone, and third stats for guns with hot barrels that go off & injure or kill some one. My guess is close to zero. I guarntee the guns mentioned above in Greg’s stories were none of these but rather just idiot users. People die every year while fishing. They move in the boat, stumble then bump their head & either drowned in water or the fall kills them. Does this mean we should outlaw or ban fishing? Again I restate that guns do not go off on their own unless you can show me real stats. Proud gun collector, hunter & scout camp gun safety instructor.

  21. Azkyroth says:

    As far as cars being deadly so we should ban them the analogy makes perfect sense unless Greg was not suggesting that in his story.

    Except that we don’t even let people use cars unless they’ve passed a test showing that they know how to do so safely, we require them to have a license to do so that can be taken away if they do the equivalent of treating a gun as if it weren’t loaded with cars, we keep a record of who owns any given car and require that it be kept updated, and require anyone owning or operating a car to purchase insurance to ensure that anyone victimized by their misuse of it will be compensated.

    Also, cars perform a critical transportation service whereas guns are, for the vast majority of people who own them, a combination of dangerous toy, ego prop, and security blanket.

    And yet people like you fight viciously against any attempt to apply any of the above to guns.

  22. Vall says:

    I think you mis-read my comment if you think I’m claiming those reasons for the cases above. As I said “Gun makers do a pretty good job of controlling all the variables, except the stoopid monkey they sell it to.”

    I was dis-proving your claim that it is impossible for a gun to go off without pulling the trigger. It won’t happen to your hand gun while you drive around looking for rapists like Charles Bronson in “Death Wish,” but it’s not beyond the known laws of physics. I doubt your claim of gun safety instructor if you have never heard of a hot gun. It is possible, you must admit it. When you demand statistics you are missing my point.

    I’m not sure what I think of abolishing the 2nd amendment referring to Greg Laden’s post above. My impulse is to be against abolishing anything. Better background checks? Sure, no problem. But dial it back for a minute before we start abolishing things.

  23. kyoseki says:

    I’ll lay any money you like that the gun in the purse didn’t shoot because of a hot barrel, it was because the owner was an idiot and stored the gun with a round in the chamber, then the trigger got hooked up on lipstick or something and caused the gun to fire.

    .. and I kind of agree with Greg that the 2nd amendment stops society having a rational discussion about firearms, but the instant it gets repealed, you’d get groups like the Brady campaign squealing with delight and trying to push outright bans on the things (and in certain locales, they’ll succeed), which is an equally irrational position.

  24. Vall says:

    Of course the gun in the purse didn’t cook off. That was an example of firing without pulling the trigger. A gun in a purse probably caught some keys, or a pen, who knows what lurks in there.

    I agree it probably caught something, purses are usually full of stuff.But what if the lipstick triggers her crack-pipe lighter instead, and then that cooks off a chambered round? Didn’t see that coming did you? Very unlikely, not impossible.

  25. kyoseki says:

    If you can make a gun cook off a chambered round with anything short of a blowtorch and without setting fire to the purse, I’ll pay you money.

  26. Greg Laden says:

    The assertion that guns don’t go off by themselves is invalidated by the gun in the purse. Full stop.

  27. kyoseki says:

    Clearly we need to ban purses ;)

  28. kyoseki says:

    My God! You’re lucky you weren’t killed! If only you’d known!

  29. Greg Laden says:

    It was a damn close call

  30. David Hart says:

    Die Anyway: “half the people on the world are below average in intelligence. (ok, below the mean)”

    Surely you meant ‘below the median’?

    @pedantry

  31. Greg Laden says:

    David: “Average” is correct. “Average” = “Central Tendency” = “mean, median, mode, etc.”

    I know, I know, the definition of “Average” in many dictionaries is the arithmetic mean. I don’t recommend getting your statistics from the dictionary.

    Even there, in normal linguistic use, the word “average” is hardly ever uttered in relation to anything but a number (statistic) when the user means “the sum of the vairates divided by n”

  32. Rick Pikul says:

    As far as I know you can not purchase a gun without a back ground check & this takes a couple days.

    Well, unless you call a guy who advertised on Craigslist or something to set up a meet in a parking lot. Or perhaps go to a gun show in certain states. It’s easy to buy a gun in the US without having to pass a background check.

    Sure, they’re not supposed to sell to you if they think you wouldn’t pass a background check. Which is why multiple investigations have had the buyers say things like “I couldn’t pass a background check,” something that should have instantly killed the sale.

    Should have is a long way from did.

  33. Chris says:

    I agree with JoeBuddha,
    ALL guns are loaded by definition.
    Anyone who doesn’t understand that is an idiot.
    You don’t point the disassembled BARREL of a gun at anyone, let alone a complete gun.
    Unfortunately there are a LOT of Idiots out there.
    Never point a gun at anything you don’t plan to shoot and
    Always treat a gun as if it is loaded.
    Any intelligent gun owner knows that.
    My parents taught me that when I got my first BB gun.
    Many gun accidents could be avoided if EVERYONE was taught proper gun safety in school.
    Because it isn’t always the owner of the gun who pulls the trigger.

  34. Ed says:

    Guns don’t kill people, dumbasses do.

Leave a Reply

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

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>