Generic gun-control debate cartoon

Katie sez, "'This Modern World' generic gun control cartoon perfectly describes the discussion regarding the Newtown shooting. It was made for the Tucson shooting but, sadly, applies equally to all gun massacres in the USA."

Generic cartoon


  1. Is this cartoon solely an expression of outrage, or is it supposed to persuade someone of something?

    Related:  Can anyone be persuaded of anything they don’t already believe?

    1. Can anyone be persuaded of anything they don’t already believe?

      I used to think so, but you’ve changed my mind.

      1. The list isn’t even confined to this year or one country, so the gun related deaths list would be waaay more than that.  Also, it’s a pretty mixed list.  Guy exposes himself, flees when gun is brandished.  If this is the best anyone can come up with, it’s less than convincing.

    1. Thanks for posting this. I find it distressing that in the Leicestershire England example near the top that the home owner was charged with Grievous Bodily Harm for defending his own home with a shotgun against 4 intruders. It took public outrage to convince the court that the charges should be dropped. What do they expect you to do? Let them rob the place and possibly assault you and your family? Call the police and wait patiently for them to show up?

      1. I don’t see what the problem is here – if you shoot someone, I would expect the Police to do a thorough investigation into whether that shooting was warranted. The Crown Prosecution Service examined the evidence and decided the homeowners had no charge to answer.

      2. They were arrested on suspicion of GBH and questioned. They were not charged. Most articles listed there (though I didn’t read the Daily Mail one) seem to suggest that there was never any real intention of prosecuting them.

        The case had enough similarities to the Tony Martin case, though, that they likely wanted to ensure it wasn’t similar. Martin also lived in an obscure area, and shot intruders into his home. Except he shot them with an illegal shotgun, had had his permit for even a legal shotgun previously revoked for shooting at someone’s car, shot the intruders while they were fleeing, and lied about where he was in the house during the shooting, making the prosecution able to successfully argue that he was waiting for the chance to shoot intruders out of revenge for previous breakins rather than fear for his life.

        And so the police needed to make sure that this was actually a legitimate case; when they did, no charges were made.

  2. The point behind concealed carry is not the expectation that an armed defender will stop the shooter but that the possibility of an armed defender will stop the mass shooting before it begins.

    These mass shooters target gun free zones on purpose because they know armed resistance will not be encountered. Mass shootings do not take place where armed citizens congregate.

    1. The point behind concealed carry is not the expectation that an armed defender will stop the shooter but that the possibility of an armed defender will stop the mass shooting before it begins.

      If everyone was allowed to carry guns then how would the armed defender recognize the mass shooter as a threat before he did anything wrong? Would all the firearms enthusiasts just constantly keep their guns trained on each other as a general precaution?

      1. There are places in which “everyone” (who wants to) is allowed to carry a gun. We don’t have to hypothesize about how such things play out. Why don’t you do a little research and get back to us?

    2. Here’s a GOP rep on the subject: if only the principal had an M4, she would have heard the shots and hit the killer in the head. If the idea were really deterrence and not nonsense everyone-could-just-be-James-Bond hypotheticals, perhaps such gun supporters could shut up about them.

    1. Nah, compassion/mourning has been replaced by “outraged rush to pass a law”. Never mind if it actually accomplishes its intended purpose. 

      The important thing is that people are sad and/or outraged so we’ve got to pass a law posthaste. 

      1. I wonder what America would be like if there was a mandatory 7 year waiting period on purchasing any new law. 

  3. Regarding “armed civilian heroes saving the day, which has never really happened”:

    Jeanne Assam was a private citizen, employed as a security guard, when she stopped the shooting at the Colorado Springs Church in December, 2007. There is no question that the assailant intended to carry out a mass shooting. Some may debate whether Assam, as a professional security guard, qualifies as an “armed civilian hero,” but there is no doubt that she was not a law enforcement officer at the time of the incident, and so to me, she is a “citizen.”

    The Pearl High School attack in December, 1997, was stopped when school principal, Jeff Cannon drew down on the assailant with a pistol that he retrieved from his car.

    In July of 2012, Vic Stacy shot and killed a man who had just killed two people and was engaged in a shootout with police. The gunman had pinned down the police officers, but had not noticed Stacy, who made an impressive long-range shot with his carry revolver.

    These are some examples that come readily to my mind. I’m sure there are more. So let’s just put the lie to the claim that such things “never really happen”.

    1. While I don’t 100% agree with the whole more guns = less crime trope that seems to be the counter-argument in this case…  But I did read something interesting today regarding all the civil rights figures from the 60s who resorted to arming themselves as a very real deterrent against the white supremacists who made attempts on their lives –
      The Black Panthers were also pretty militant about packing heat back in the day…

      1. It’s actually because of the Black Panthers that you can’t walk around in public openly displaying a loaded gun in California anymore.  The Black Panthers used to follow the police around with loaded guns and law books and inform people being arrested of their constitutional rights.  That is about the closest real-life example one can find to exemplify gun-proponents view that the founders intended citizens to keep arms to protect themselves from the tyranny of the government.  If you’ve never seen the footage of the Black Panthers protesting the law by marching into the California statehouse with loaded .357’s and 12-gauge shotguns, you should look it up.  It’s pretty incredible.

        The grand irony is that it was that hero of the right, Ronald Reagan, who signed the Mulford Act into law banning citizens of California from the right to openly carry a loaded weapon in public.  I just read his exact quote the other day, but can’t find it.  Essentially Reagan said there was no reason any citizen needed to be walking around in public with a loaded gun.

    2. Great.  Three awesome examples in only fifteen years.

      How many atrocities have there been this year alone?  Anybody?

      1. Tom Tomorrow said, “never actually happens.” I pulled three examples out of my butt without even trying. There are more. The only point I am making here, is that Tom’s “never actually happens” claim is false. Of course, it was kind of a soft pitch, given that absolute claims are so easy to disprove. You may not think that the number of successful defensive uses of guns outweighs the atrocities committed with them, but if you can get away with denying that defensive uses even occur, then you are able to avoid actually engaging with the issue. That is what I am responding to.

        Also: you can’t look at my three examples and act like those are the only ones that exist. Did you seriously expect me to catalog every incident of defensive gun use that I could find, right here in BoingBoing’s comments? A discussion on statistics relating to defensive use vs. illegal violent attacks could be had, but I doubt you are actually interested in it.

  4. Pretty spot on. If unsure, read some of the comments here, especially on yesterday’s posts. Pretty much follow this exactly.

  5. A minor nitpicking: the cartoon you link was not made in response the Tucson atrocity, but was made in response to last week’s atrocity in Newtown. This was the cartoon made in response to the Tucson atrocity. For more, see Dan Perkins’s website (the host of the second link).

    There have now been enough of these mass-shooting atrocities,and enough blustering and inaction afterwards, that Perkins has been moved to make a ‘generic response’ cartoon twice.

  6. So let me get this straight Cory, you’ve got all these stories about sticking it to the man and yet you want to give him more ways to limit what we are allowed to do?  I suppose it’s OK when it’s something *you* believe in.

  7. The problem with the idea of deterrence is that plenty of mass shootings happen in places where people are hypothetically armed.  They don’t all happen in schools.  Anyone who goes on a mass shooting spree isn’t thinking too straight.  I suspect that guns (or the lack thereof) at the location isn’t, for the vast, vast majority of shooters, even a consideration.

    1. That’s why every couple months, we hear the awful news that a dozen cops were killed when some mentally ill person opened fire in a police station.

  8. The one thing that’s different this time is the age of the victims. And I’m confused and sad that it seems to matter. Why wasn’t Columbine enough to spark this kind of moral outrage?

    (Of course, there’s stil the possibility that this one really isn’t that different after all, and the NRA gets its way yet again, and we go back to griping about it until the next domestic terror attack.)

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