NRA says answer is to get ‘homicidal maniacs” off streets

The Navy Yard shooting: A sign of the times?

The Navy Yard shooting: A sign of the times?

Greater efforts are needed to identify and lock up mentally ill people who are dangerous, a top National Rifle Association official responding to the recent Washington Navy Yard shootings said Sunday.

The nation’s mental health system is “in complete breakdown,” resulting in not enough of the mentally ill being committed to psychiatric hospitals, National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre told NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“If we leave these homicidal maniacs on the street … they’re going to kill,” he said. “They need to be committed is what they need to be. If they are committed, they’re not at the Naval Yard.”

Aaron Alexis, the IT contractor who killed 12 people inside a Navy Yard building last week, had a history of violent outbursts, had told police he was hearing voices and was in the early stages of being treated by the Veterans Administration for serious mental problems.

Despite Alexis’ history, weaknesses in federal laws aimed at keeping guns out of the hands of the mentally ill and criminals enabled him to clear a background check and obtain a shotgun that he used in the shooting from a Northern Virginia gun shop.

Doctors who treated Alexis should have carried out “a complete mental health status exam,” Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., told CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

“We have to make it where the health care professionals in this country, when they see somebody that is having symptoms of psychosis or schizophrenia, that they can act on that by notifying the ‘do not sell’ list so that people can’t buy guns,” he said. “He (Alexis) bought a gun in spite of the fact that at several interchanges people were aware of his psychosis.”

At the same time, Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., the co-author of a bill to expand background checks to more gun purchasers, acknowledged the bill remains stalled in the Senate. He told CBS he has no intention of renewing his effort to pass the measure in light of the Navy Yard shootings unless he seems movement on the part of the opponents of the bill.

“I’m not going to go out there and just beat the drum for the sake of beating the drum,” he said. “There has to be people willing to move off the position they’ve taken, and they’ve got to come to that conclusion themselves.”

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Copyright  © 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Copyright  © 2013 Capitol Hill Blue

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3 Responses to "NRA says answer is to get ‘homicidal maniacs” off streets"

  1. Keith  September 23, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    The nation’s mental health system is “in complete breakdown,” resulting in not enough of the mentally ill being committed to psychiatric hospitals, National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre told NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

    Translation: “It’s not our fault that “homicidal maniacs” are running around loose.”

    Nice try, Mr. LaPierre, but no cigar.

    What’s missing in your specious argument is that it’s the COMBINATION of “homicidal maniacs” who ALSO have easy access to high power, semi-automatic firearms that’s causing the bulk of these mass murders.

    Remove one (or the other) item from the equation and most of these absolutely senseless mass killings that seem to now be on the rise in the USA would most likely come to a screeching, grinding halt.

    And, what about the OTHER 16,000+ people who are killed every year in the United States by firearms? Are you now saying that ALL of those others were killed by “homicidal maniacs” as well?

    The bottom line here is that, regardless of who killed them, these 16,000+ people are ALL now just as dead as the 13 who were killed at the Washington Navy Yard last week by your so-called “homicidal maniac”.

    Or, to put it another way, they were ALL killed by ordinary people (who, thanks to to the ongoing work of you and your like-minded cronies), continue to have FAR too easy access to such lethal weaponry.

  2. Jon  September 24, 2013 at 8:10 am

    A quote from a quote:

    “Greater efforts are needed to identify and lock up mentally ill people”

    Yeah. I concur. We should go to more efforts to identify and lock up physically ill people, too.

    Or we could look at it as a curable matter. Imprison, or cure?

    Jon

    PS – Thanks.

  3. sherry  September 24, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    Andrea Yates drowned her seven children in a bathtub. She was released against medical advice from a mental health facility just days earlier. Her insurance refused to pay for additional care.
    All the people who have committed recent mass killings had documented mental health issues.
    Perhaps guns are too easily obtained. I can’t speak to that, I don’t own one. If someone wants to kill people, they will find a way.
    We have too many people who are severely mentally ill who are not being treated.
    The democrats would like to solve the gun issue by getting rid of them. There has to be compromise on both sides.

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