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home : latest news : state May 29, 2016

6/19/2014 6:51:00 AM
Tucson shooting victim's mom joins other survivors in 'Not One More' pledge
Roxanna Green, mother of Tucson shooting victim Christina-Taylor, joins other survivors and relatives to victims of gun violence to urge Congress to take action on ending senseless acts of gun violence. (Cronkite News Service photo by Miranda Rivers)
Roxanna Green, mother of Tucson shooting victim Christina-Taylor, joins other survivors and relatives to victims of gun violence to urge Congress to take action on ending senseless acts of gun violence. (Cronkite News Service photo by Miranda Rivers)
Richard Martinez, whose son Christopher Michaels-Martinez was killed last month in a shooting spree at the University of California Santa Barbara, speaks at a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. (Cronkite News Service photo by Miranda Rivers)
Richard Martinez, whose son Christopher Michaels-Martinez was killed last month in a shooting spree at the University of California Santa Barbara, speaks at a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. (Cronkite News Service photo by Miranda Rivers)
Cronkite News Service

WASHINGTON - More than three years after her 9-year-old daughter was shot and killed, Roxanna Green's heart breaks all over again when she sees another shooting on the news.

"When we laid her to rest, my heart broke," Green said of her daughter, Christina-Taylor, one of six people killed in the Tucson shooting that wounded then-Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in 2011. "My heart is still broken."

Green joined other relatives of victims from other mass shootings - some grieving for years, some for less than a month - at a news conference Tuesday where they called on Congress to take action and put an end to gun violence.

They stood tearfully, holding pictures of loved ones who were lost to gun violence - in Tucson, at Virginia Tech, at Aurora, at Newtown, at the University of California Santa Barbara and in other attacks.

Richard Martinez, whose son Christopher Michaels-Martinez was killed last month at UC Santa Barbara, cited Tom Mauser, whose son, Daniel, was killed in the 1999 Columbine shooting.

"My son Chris has been dead for 26 days, and there is a hole in my heart that nothing can fill," Martinez said. "Daniel Mauser has been dead 15 years and what has been done?"

It was Martinez who demanded "not one more," after his son's death. That rallying cry was taken up by Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, who kicked off a postcard campaign demanding action from elected officials on gun violence.

They said that more than 600,000 people have signed up to send a "Not One More" postcard to their congressman, their governor and each of their senators- more than at least 2.4 million postcards in all.

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., is one of those targeted in the campaign, with the two groups pledging to deliver the postcards to his Phoenix office Friday.

Flake could not be contacted for comment Tuesday, but his office released a statement citing his support of past legislation calling for background checks on gun buyers.

"In order to ensure background checks include those with mental health issues, Sen. Flake is an original cosponsor of legislation that would assist states and federal agencies in providing mental health records to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System," the statement said.

Green serves on the advisory board of Everytown for Gun Safety, which said it supports reforms that respect the Second Amendment and protect people. She said Tuesday that she has been comforted by the growing number of Americans who have united to end gun violence.

"I have dedicated my life to help keep other families from suffering this horrific pain," she said.

Speakers expressed hope Tuesday that they may see some progress made on gun legislation before the end of this year.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., was quoted in published reports last week saying that bipartisan gun background-check legislation could be brought back up again this year.

The Senate voted 54-46 last year in a procedural vote for the so-called Manchin-Toomey bill, which needed 60 votes to pass.

Calls to the National Rifle Association seeking comment were not immediately returned.

But Green said it is time for Congress to act.

"Not one more parent should have to wonder who their child would have grown up to be," she said. "And not one more politician should vote with the NRA instead of with American families."

Taylor Waste

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Article comment by: Mary Jane

At the risk of repeating myself:

It dawned on me recently that we are looking at the gun control issue all wrong. Why did our founding fathers make gun ownership so important as to make it number 2 on the list? It was so we could protect ourselves from an over-reaching tyrannical government that might come about in the future, right?

I put it to you that the 2nd amendment is doing exactly what it was designed to do! Our government has decided to set aside the Constitution in order to wage war on the citizenry with their 'War on Drugs', and what has the response been? To fight back tooth and nail with horrific violence.

It happened when alcohol prohibition was tried and it's happening now with drug prohibition. If you want to return to a calmer, less violent America, END PROHIBITION! It didn't work with alcohol and it won't work with drugs. You want to fund a bunch of wanna - be Al Capones and Elliot Nesses shooting up our communities destroying the fabric of society, maintain the status quo.

Let's face it, the vast majority of violence can be traced back to the illegal drug trade. Waging war against our citizenry this way is unconstitutional, not to mention stupid!

Drugs are a national health crisis, not a criminal justice crisis. We don't treat alcoholics this way!

Do you want to put an end to the craziness of gun violence and the crime associated with drugs? YOU KNOW WHAT YOU MUST DO!!!!!!

It won't be easy for the Law 'n' Order crowd to admit that 50 yrs of doing it wrong has to stop, but we can force that issue!!!

That Constitution written by our forefathers has a depth of wisdom that should never be underestimated!

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: Bill Bassett

David, I honestly don't give a rip if you or anyone else who is legally allowed to owns a gun or several guns. My litany of conditions are common sense. Felons, domestic violence suspects ( with court orders against them) children, mentally ill, depressed and otherwise unstable people should not have access to firearms. If you are a gun owner and allow your guns to be stolen, borrowed, found by a child or otherwise compromised, you should face penalties. If you purchase guns for a third party, that should be a crime.

Until the CDC is funded to make comprehensive studies on gun violence as a public health issue, we won't have a good number regarding civilian gun use thwarting crimes such as rapes, assaults or homicides. I believe all you can cite now are surveys conducted by subjective means. What we can get from FBI and CDC reports now indicate that of approximately 30,000 gunshot deaths each year in the US about 1/3 are homicides, 2/3 are suicides and a few hundred are accidents and fewer still are justifiable self defense shootings,

I stand by everything I have said regarding gun culture, the societal acceptance of guns and how we can all watch that pendulum swing back to a more reasonable attitude toward guns. More guns = more death. The stats bear that out. I'm not the one who is paranoid here. I'm not afraid for myself, it's the children like my own grand kids who's daddy is a cop in Las Vegas. It's the innocent college student on his way to class and even the well meaning but inexperienced Good Samaritan who tries to stop a bad guy but winds up dead. I'm afraid for those lives ruined by gun violence and the idiocy guns seem to spawn in society.

Posted: Saturday, June 21, 2014
Article comment by: David in Cottonwood

Yep Bill, you've been consistent consistently wrong.

On one hand you state "Own all the guns you want, I don't care." Then in the same comment you lay out a litany of conditions, as well as how 'uncool' you think firearms are. BS Bill, you care, you care a lot.

Ah well, so long as paranoids like Bill and Rose keep beating the drum the way they're beating it, gun owners have nothing to fear so long as they stay vigilant and involved. They're preaching to their own choir and winning zero converts.

By the way Bill, I still see your 30,000 lost, the majority of whom are criminals to begin with, and raise you over 100,000 innocents saved every year by privately owned firearms. Have fun with that.

And Rose, sorry ma'am, I address gun control with logic and common sense every time it's brought up. You're inability to distinguish actual logic and common sense from your personal prejudices is no one's problem but yours.

Posted: Saturday, June 21, 2014
Article comment by: Billinda Bantam

It's OK, Bill. You don't have to shout. People would understand you a lot better if you just quietly and calmly said what you mean:

Enforce the gun laws already on the books.

Fix the federal background check system so that gun sellers aren't forced to sell guns to people they think are nuts, and so sellers at gun shows can get a free, instant, reliable reading before legitimate buyers wander away.

If we could get those two things done across the country, we could figure how effective background checks are and where, if anywhere, reformers needed to go from there. We could get a better idea of which areas of the U.S. had the best legislation/education and start fixing the rest.

That's a big job, Bill--just that--and you're absolutely right. Need to get on it now if we want it done by 2100.

Posted: Saturday, June 21, 2014
Article comment by: ROSE BARNES

YOU GO BILL!!! Obsessive gun lovers are like spoiled children. "Don't tell me what to do". etc, etc, etc They don't want to use common sense or logic to the problem. And there is definitely a problem with gun violence. Don't ever stop Bill.

Posted: Saturday, June 21, 2014
Article comment by: Bill Bassett

No one, NO ONE , certainly not me, is suggesting taking away anyone's freaking rights. Read what I wrote. Own all the guns you want, I don't care. If, you are legally allowed to own them. If you are not a felon, if you are not under a court order for domestic violence, if you make absolutely sure children or your loony cousin or thieves or anyone who is a felon etc etc etc. to access them. What I care about is not allowing those guns to be used for killing people.

I have been absolutely consistent throughout these discussions. Guns will eventually no longer be cool. Guns
tag you as an outlier and social misfit. Social pressure will once again win out, eventually. Approximately 30,000 people die of gunshot wounds in the US every year.
Most would say that is the result of guns falling into the wrong hands. Keep the guns out of the wrong hands. Don't sell or trade without a background check. Don't be a straw purchaser. Keep em locked and out of reach of kids or even friends. Don't brandish them around, that just makes you a target, not to mention a jerk. Please.
If you know someone who likes their guns a little too much or if you think you like em a little too much, seek help.

Posted: Friday, June 20, 2014
Article comment by: Tired of Hypocrisy

Bill, no one wants to see these shootings and senseless violence. I believe Jefferson also said "those who give up freedom for security deserve neither". I sympathize with your views but where does it end? I heard a quote that was attributed to some ruthless dictator somewhere that basically said "if you take away one small freedom a year from people years down the road they don't realize they are not free anymore" or something to that affect. There will always be a price to pay to live in a free society.

Posted: Friday, June 20, 2014
Article comment by: David in Cottonwood

@- '@ here we go again'

Doctors should be held accountable when they refuse to use the reporting process to ensure psychiatric patients are flagged in the back ground check system, same for law enforcement agencies when they only pay lip service to their responsibilities. Elliot Rodger's case is a clear cut example of both. Cars are registered for revenue purposes, nothing more. That there are additional benefits to that registration is immaterial to the firearms debate. There IS already a 'chain of custody' trail that can be followed by law enforcement where firearms are concerned, facilitated by each weapons serial number and the Federal Form 4473, a form which must be filled out whenever purchasing a firearm from a licensed dealer. There is no way to prevent interfamily transfers, nor should there be, and private party to private party transfers are impossible to regulate. Illegal transfers are, well, illegal. What are we to do, pass laws that make them More illegal? Are felons or those with criminal intent who are willing to ignore all laws going to magically alter their behavior based on new laws?

In most cases bullets already CAN be traced back to individual firearms. However, it is easy to alter a firearmís ballistic signature, and in fact that signature can change over time with extensive use of the firearm anyway.
There are some things in this world that just cannot be prevented spontaneous violence is one of them.

Life is sometimes dangerous, there are no natural or manmade guarantees of safety or security regardless of how enlightened or progressive society becomes, and itís foolish and irresponsible to think otherwise.

Posted: Friday, June 20, 2014
Article comment by: David in Cottonwood

Bill writes- "Ridicule me if you wish. I can take it." A little stuck on your self aren't you? I don't care whether you can 'take it' or not, I'm simply illustrating your lack of logic and common sense to others.

And I'm sorry, but your suggestions definitely threaten the 2nd Amendment, and worse, they threated the very idea of the rule of law. Frankly it's the flakiest Iíve heard you yet.

Gun violence will never abate to a level you will find 'acceptable' Bill, that's a simple fact of life. You feel threatened by an imaginary 'gun culture' that wouldn't be aware of your existence, we get that, but an overwhelming majority of the violent homicides in the country are perpetrated by law breakers, on other lawbreakers. The sterile numbers you use to rouse fear in others don't explain that innocents are an extremely small portion of the percentage of victims, and that most of the laws you would like to see enacted won't save a single solitary life, yet have a great potential to put additional innocents in danger.

Guns aren't 'cool' or 'glorified' in society Bill, that's just a creepy fabrication in your own mind, and in the mind of folks who share your world view. It's an advertising device you use to try and sway the uneducated and overly emotional.

As for my nom de guerre 'Jacobite', itís simply a fanciful handle with personal meaning, a left over from my military career. You should recognize the one above. And why bother complaining you can't look something up (the Cato studies and FBI statistics), and then admit that you wouldn't bother anyway? Thank you for the provided examples of your irrational thought process, it makes you easier to dismiss as a crackpot.

Posted: Friday, June 20, 2014
Article comment by: Bill Bassett

Good Morning, to: Tired of the Hypocrisy, sure, there are existing laws. There are also existing laws which thwart efforts to improve the gun violence epidemic. For example, I understand that funding for studies by the CDC to look into the public health aspect of gun violence have been denied, not only denied but actually forbidden. Why is that? Change that law. The straw buyer laws have just now been made effective in at least one state, why not all? Georgia's open carry law is ridiculous, all those stand your ground laws are having tragic consequences. Sure, lots of laws on the books already. Still 30,000 dead every year from gun shots. Now, how about some effective laws?

How about we put the damn things away, cool our jets and figure this out. The Sandy Hook guy was enamoured with guns. What if he had been enamoured with some other object? Something cool and yet harmless. Life would be different in Sandy Hook today. He was mentally ill but it was his love of shooting things that did the trick. Society, his own mother and a general acceptance that guns were cool put him over the edge. Guns are dangerous. They are designed to be dangerous. They kill people.
The culture of guns, the video games, the movies, the TV shows, the news coverage all glorify guns. In what way does changing perception violate anyone's right? You can still buy and smoke cigarettes but it's no longer cool. You can still get drunk and drive your car but you will get shunned by your buddies because that's not cool man.
Gun culture is real, it is alarming but the pendulum will swing back. Help speed that up. Put them away, lock them up, keep your children safe.

Posted: Thursday, June 19, 2014
Article comment by: @ here we go again!

Psychotropic drugs are not the problem. The lack of mental health care system is to blame, and insurance companies dictate "care", not the doctors. It is cheaper for insurance companies to pay for pills and limit counseling that is so critical to caring for the mentally ill.

We already have gun control: felons can't own guns. Yet the Constitution didn't put that limit for felons and no one grips about that. Guns should be trackable and registered, with titles, just like cars. Ballistic checked so bullets retrieved from the dead can be traced back to the gun. Your right to own a gun is not being infringed upon:

I, too, am not going to stand for any more school shootings, random shorting of kids and

Posted: Thursday, June 19, 2014
Article comment by: Bill Bassett

Jaco? May I call you Jaco? I have no idea which studies you have cited before because I have no idea who you are, hence I can't look in whatever archives may exists. As if I'd be inclined to do so anyway.

Nothing I have suggested will violate your precious and sadly misinterpreted 2nd Amendment. They may however save a life, a few lives, many lives, your life, my life and on and on. I did say 'may' on purpose. Ridicule me if you wish. I can take it.

What's with the reference to Jacobites? What do early 18th century Scotsmen have to do with Cottonwood? Or anything else for that matter? You're not the only one, someone else brought them up once or twice. I didn't get it then either. Did Alex Jones talk about the Jacobites one afternoon? Is that it?

Gun violence will abate when guns are no longer cool. When is is no longer acceptable to open your holster and swing yours around in public. When society shuns the glorification, aggrandizement and pop culture status of guns, people will quietly put them back in their sox drawer or on the high shelf in the closet where they belong, with trigger locks in place.

Do you know someone who likes their guns a little too much? Level with em, assuming you are both sober. Get one gun back in the safe at a time. One at a time. 300,000,000 to go.

Posted: Thursday, June 19, 2014
Article comment by: Tired of Hypocrisy

Bill there are already laws on the books covering everything you have brought up. But you(and other libs) already know this. Sandy hook shooter broke around 2 dozen laws during his shooting, the recent California shooter around the same plus passed background checks and interview by the police. Laws will change nothing because(here's the part that really confuses libs) criminals and crazy people ignore laws! Thomas Jefferson once said that NO law abiding shall EVER be denied the right to bear arms. I am fairly certain he understood the 2nd amendment better than any politician alive today.

Posted: Thursday, June 19, 2014
Article comment by: Jacobite in Cottonwood

Lastly Bill, you state suicides 'might' be reduced by greater restrictions on guns? They also 'might' not. Please don't place restrictions on My rights in order to perform Your social experiments. If you really need to know if firearms restrictions and suicide rates are linked, just look at the World Health Organization's worldwide suicide statistics. We're 33rd on that list, with many countries above us that have gun laws that run from restrictive to draconian. So, if you're just going to float the idea that stricter regulation 'might' reduce suicides, Iím gonna float the idea, based on actual numbers, that stricter regulation 'might' result in more.

To wrap it all up, Iím pretty sure mental health flags are Supposed to be available on the background check database, it's my understanding that the problem is healthcare professionals not doing Their job of ensuring their patients wind up on it. Whether thatís true or not, I donít think youíll find any argument from any responsible gun owners that reporting on the mentally ill needs to be improved.

Posted: Thursday, June 19, 2014
Article comment by: Jacobite in Cottonwood

Sure Bill, let's blame everyone first except the perpetrator, because that's such a logical suggestion. Not. Nor is it very American. Using your logic, the cops that interviewed Elliot Rodger before his killing spree, and his shrink, are the ones you should be most angry at. They both had ample opportunity to stop him, and didn't.

As for your first comment, sure, keep sending those cards Bill. And while you waste your time on feel good / do nothing grandstanding, the actual problem won't be addressed, mental illness.
And by the way Bill, in reference to your comment - "Guns kill people", obsessively anthropomorphising an inanimate object could be construed as a sign of mental illness, just sayin. :)

As for the rest of your comment, answer me this, at what gun shows did Jared Loughner, Adam Lanza, James Eagan Holmes, or Elliot Rodger purchase their guns, where they weren't subjected to a back ground check? The whole concept is BS, back ground checks ARE required at gun shows.

You also claim that 'pro-life' and 'pro-gun' are mutually exclusive ideas. More bologna from the mind of Bill. Based on the fact that the use of firearms in self-defense has been proven to save vastly more lives each year than the use of firearms in illegally taking a life, the truth is overwhelmingly the exact opposite of your claim. I've provided the studies to you before, right here in this paper. Too bad you haven't bothered to follow up and educate yourself on the topic.

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