Call Your MoC about Gun Reform for the Week of Sunday 8 September

The Congressional recess comes to an end this week. Congress will return to session on or about Thursday 12 September. That means it is time to hold #MoscowMitch’s feet to the fire. He said he’d bring gun reform legislation to the floor of the Senate to have a “real conversation.” There are three bills that we have to prise loose from #MassacreMitch’s extremely white and tight ass where he has them hidden. It is an unpleasant job, but it has to be done. Don your hazmat suits and get to work!

We needn’t go over, yet again, the reasons we need gun reform legislation, do we? Wasn’t the massacres in Odessa, Texas, Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso Texas enough? At any rate, here’s what we should all be doing about gun legislation this week:

Call #MassacreMitch

Wouldn’t it be just lovely if #MassacreMitch go 60+ million phone calls — that’s approximately the number of votes Clinton got in 2016 — reminding him that he SAID we would be discussing gun reform legislation after the recess ended.

Gottamnit, #MassacreMitch, that conversation should begin 8:00 day one! I expect to see the headlines on Thursday afternoon about the historic and wide ranging debate in the Senate on gun-related legislation.

Call this motherfucker today, tomorrow, the next day, and every day and remind him of his promise! Fuck him. But, be polite, y’all.

Call Your Senators

Call your senators and tell them that you support gun reform legislation. Tell them that you want them to co-sponsor the House bills on gun legislation that are languishing in the Senate right now. Tell them you want them to help move those bills to the floor for debate and ultimately a vote. Tell them to vote for those bills and more.

Call Your Representatives

I heard Nancy Pelosi had been planning on bringing representatives back to DC last week to prepare more legislation on gun reform but didn’t because of Hurricane Dorian.

There are three bills that were passed last spring and that the Grim Reaper promptly smoked and drew up into his nether regions where they wouldn’t be seeing the neon lights of the Senate anytime soon. That’s great, but there is more to be done, and it is high-time we got to doing it.

The Five Calls Script

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [your location].

I’m calling to urge Representative or Senator [NAME] to take action to reduce the epidemic of gun violence in the United States by…

CHOOSE 1-3 POLICIES BELOW

  • Closing the loophole that lets people buy guns at shows and through private sellers without background checks
  • Instituting universal background checks for ammo and gun buyers, a measure 80% of gun owners support
  • Funding evidence-based community anti-violence programs, like Ceasefire, which have been shown to reduce shootings
  • Reinstating a federal ban on the purchase of high-capacity magazines and military-style assault weapons, which is supported by at least 65% of Americans.

Tips for Calling

When you call your representative’s office, please remember the following:

  • Ask for the aide working on gun-related issues.
  • Be polite! No matter whose office you’re calling. No matter what their positions are. No matter how inflamed you are about impeachment — and you should be very passionate — be polite.
  • Remember that the people you are talking to are people! So, be nice.
  • Call during business hours of the area code their office is in. Typically, that is 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
  • Have a script or notes to follow so you don’t forget anything.
  • Maybe call with friends. You know like a party.

Contacting Your MoC

Find out how to contact your MoC using these links!

  • Common Cause will give you the names, party affiliation, direct phone number, website link, and social media platforms of all of your federal, state, and local elected officials.
  • Call My Congress: Uses your zip code to locate your Congressional Representative and your Senators. And, it returns phone numbers, tweeter handle, party affiliation, voting record, and link to C-Span appearances!
  • 5 Calls: I am sad to report that Call Your Rep is no longer supported, but you can sign-up for 5 Calls which is a service that will help you contact your Congressional representatives and keep you abreast of on going issues that are important to you! Now, that is a good deal.
  • The Capital Hill Switch Board: (202) 224-3121.
  • MassacreMitch and #MoscowMitch: (202) 224-2541. Call him throughout the recess!
  • Nancy Pelosi: Her DC office, (202) 225-4965; her California office, (415) 556-4862

Join Indivisible

Follow the link to Indivisible to find a group near you, their campaigns, events in your neighborhood, and download their handy-dandy booklet!

We the People March

On Saturday 21 September, there will be a massive We the People March in Washington, D.C. to support our democracy in the face of growing authoritarianism and outright fascism of both the Ol’ Pussy Grabber, #MoscowMitch, and the GOP.

There are other marches organized around the country, too. Either find one near you, or organize it yourself!

4 comments

  1. Now let’s do the overall numbers.

    South Korea suicide rate – 26.9/ homicide rate 0.70 (2015)
    Japan suicide rate – 18.5/ homicide rate 0.28
    UK suicide rate – 8.9/ 1.20
    Netherlands – 12.6/ 0.55
    Spain – 8.7/ 0.63
    Hungary – 19.1/ 2.07
    Ireland – 11.5/ 0.80
    Australia – 13.2/ 0.94
    Germany – 13.6/ 1.18
    New Zealand – 12.1/ 0.99
    Italy – 8.2/ 0.67
    Sweden – 14.8/ 1.08
    Denmark – 12.8/ 0.98
    Slovakia – 12.8/ 1.05
    Portugal – 14.0/ 0.64
    Norway – 12.2/ 0.51
    Czech Rep. – 13.2 (2015)/ 0.61
    Belgium – 20.7/ 1.95
    Canada – 12.5/ 1.68
    France – 17.7/ 1.35
    Austria – 15.6/ 0.66
    Finland – 15.9/ 1.42
    USA – 15.3 / 5.35

    It’s difficult to compare statistics across borders because each nation doesn’t necessarily count things in the same way. The US tends to be on the higher end of things overall. I think we can definitely do a better job of educating people and getting them treatment for their various issues. But I think we can still look at those statistics and see that it isn’t a problem with the tools used but rather the underlying culture of the people involved.

    And once you get out of a handful of certain high density areas in the US you see homicide statistics much closer to what you see in most of Western Europe. It’s not the guns. Otherwise high gun ownership states like the Dakotas, Montana, Wyoming wouldn’t have such low homicide rates.

    references:
    http://worldpopulationreview . com/countries/suicide-rate-by-country/
    http://worldpopulationreview . com/countries/murder-rate-by-country/
    https://brnodaily . com/2018/09/20/breaking-news/czech-republic-suicide-rate-ranks-13th-among-eu-member-states/
    https://www.macrotrends . net/countries/KOR/south-korea/murder-homicide-rate

    Like

    1. Howdy Kamas!

      We here at Ye Olde Blogge appreciate all readers and, especially, commenters. As a fellow blogger, I’m sure you can appreciate how lonely a business blogging can be, so thank you for commenting on my post. I also appreciate the attempt at constructing a factual argument and to argue from statistics. Not all commenters are able to produce such arguments. As a matter of policy, I don’t approve those comments for publication on the blog. I may be snarky, sarcasticky, and profaney, but I am also factual, well supported, and well-reasoned.

      I have to say that I am deeply suspicious of statements like, “…we can still look at those statistics and see that it isn’t a problem with the tools used but rather the underlying culture of the people involved;” and “And once you get out of a handful of certain high density areas in the US” as sounding like proxies for racism. But, other than just mentioning my suspicions, I won’t pursue it further. And, I won’t let any exchange between us on this blog devolve further than here.

      Before we get to the statistical arguments about homicide rates and gun availability, I would like to address suicide. Typically, suicide is impulsive and is based on a preferred method. It is not true that a suicidal person will just switch methods if one is not available. So, if at the moment of suicidal crisis, the preferred method is removed, the suicide is prevented. This finding is overwhelmingly supported in the academic literature.

      I will also note that gun-related suicide disproportionately affects rural conservative white men. I find it concerning that you are so willing to condemn 20,000 Americans a year to preventable deaths instead of treating gun-related suicide as we do all other means of suicide, a public health issue. We educate and control access to lethal means of suicide from the roofs of buildings, to the edges of buildings, to poisons. We have PSAs and government regulations requiring safety features around pools, cars, lethal substances, and other dangerous elements of our society. Why wouldn’t be treat gun related suicides the same way? There is no need for 20,000 Americans to die every year from gun-suicides. Such preventative measures will not infringe on anyone’s rights just like we regulate speech and religion without infringing on anyone’s rights.

      You seem to be perfectly capable of finding such evidence, so I won’t reproduce it here. It is easily googled.

      With regard to gun violence (homicide, accidental shootings, and suicide) the overwhelming evidence is that it is the gun. I will go through and cite some of the studies that support this contention because you probably will appreciate it. Essentially, though, if you statistically control for all other factors, when more guns are available gun violence increases. States with stricter gun laws, have less gun violence than states that don’t. This has been a consistent finding for decades.

      From the Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard Injury Control Research Center, Homicide page.

      “…[G]un availability is a risk factor for homicide, both in the United States and across high-income countries. Case-control studies, ecological time-series and cross-sectional studies indicate that in homes, cities, states and regions in the U.S., where there are more guns, both men and women are at a higher risk for homicide, particularly firearm homicide,” Hepburn, Lisa; Hemenway, David. Firearm availability and homicide: A review of the literature. Aggression and Violent Behavior: A Review Journal. 2004; 9:417-40.

      “We found that across developed countries, where guns are more available, there are more homicides. These results often hold even when the United States is excluded,” Hemenway, David; Miller, Matthew. Firearm availability and homicide rates across 26 high income countries. Journal of Trauma. 2000; 49:985-88.

      “[W]e analyzed the relationship between firearm availability and homicide across 50 states over a ten-year period (1988-1997). After controlling for poverty and urbanization, for every age group, people in states with many guns have elevated rates of homicide, particularly firearm homicide,” Miller, Matthew; Azrael, Deborah; Hemenway, David. Household firearm ownership levels and homicide rates across U.S. regions and states, 1988-1997. American Journal of Public Health. 2002; 92:1988-1993.

      “…[S]tates with higher levels of household gun ownership had higher rates of firearm homicide and overall homicide. This relationship held for both genders and all age groups, after accounting for rates of aggravated assault, robbery, unemployment, urbanization, alcohol consumption, and resource deprivation (e.g., poverty). There was no association between gun prevalence and non-firearm homicide,” Miller, Matthew; Azrael, Deborah; Hemenway, David. State-level homicide victimization rates in the U.S. in relation to survey measures of household firearm ownership, 2001-2003. Social Science and Medicine. 2007; 64:656-64.

      “…[T]he scientific literature on the relationship between gun prevalence (levels of household gun ownership) and suicide, homicide and unintentional firearm death and concludes that where there are higher levels of gun ownership, there are more gun suicides and more total suicides, more gun homicides and more total homicides, and more accidental gun deaths,” Miller M, Azrael D, Hemenway D. Firearms and violence death in the United States. In: Webster DW, Vernick JS, eds. Reducing Gun Violence in America. Baltimore MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2013.

      “Differences in rates of homicides of LEOs across states are best explained not by differences in crime, but by differences in household gun ownership. In high gun states, LEOs are 3 times more likely to be murdered than LEOs [law enforcement officers – Jack] working in low-gun states,” Swedler DI, Simmons MM, Dominici F, Hemenway D. Firearm prevalence and homicides of law enforcement officers in the United States. American Journal of Public Health. 2015; 105:2042-48.
      For all who are interested in looking at the evidence, it overwhelmingly suggests that guns are the problem, and the extraordinary number of guns per capita in the US is driving our public health crisis around gun violence. This is not a difference of opinion, it is not a difference in values, it is a difference in the quality of evidence cited.

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Like

  2. The blue line in that chart for the USA tells an important story. Problematic as AR type rifles are, the majority of guns in that blue suicide line are handguns – handy, easily used, and about 90% fatal in suicide attempts, often impulsive attempts with little warning to others, suicides. Our understandable focus on the mass shooters and their favored weapon tends to keep up chasing after the rare event, the one that makes the News. We have an epidemic happening that takes far more, orders of magnitude more lives, with domestic and relational homicide running a close second, also mostly with handguns.

    Liked by 1 person

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