Governor Greg Abbott is as cold a human being in real life as he appears on television – cares for nobody, nobody cares much for him. If Texas is lucky, Abbott won’t win his re-election, but nobody is holding their breath. This is Texas after all.
Ariana Garcia, Chron reports:
Gov. Greg Abbott did not attend a single funeral for any of the 19 children or two teachers killed mass shooting at Robb Elementary School shooting in Uvalde, Texas on May 24, according to his schedule, which was obtained through an open records request by ABC News.
Abbott’s schedule from May 25 to June 14 indicates that his last visit to Uvalde was on June 5 to attend a community worship event at the Uvalde County Fairplex. However, missing from the schedule is any mention of Uvalde victim funerals. The last funeral held in Uvalde for victims was on June 16, when 11-year-old Layla Salazar was laid to rest.
“I don’t want this to sound like some political assault on him, but at the end of the day he hasn’t been there since Day 5, when the president came… We had a failed response on giving resources to families,” [state Sen. Roland] Gutierrez said. “He did not go to one single funeral—and quite honestly, many of the families didn’t want him there.”
Gutierrez’s statements align with recent statements from some of the shooting victims’ families. During a July 13 news conference, Angel Garza, father of 10-year-old victim Amerie Jo Garza, alleged that “since this happened, Gov. Abbott has yet to reach out.” Garza added that Sen. Ted Cruz, who also attended some prayer vigils for victims, similarly failed to reach out to victims’ families.
The biggest problem with this anti-NRA crusade is that more companies haven’t joined it.
In addition to acting as responsible corporate citizens, these companies are teeing up an important new business strategy. They’re aligning themselves with an emerging market of younger, more socially conscious consumers and financial backers who want to connect with companies that address big social justice issues, including a crackdown on gun violence.
The corporate backlash against the NRA and its approximately 5 million members shows no sign of abating. In addition to United Airlines, the anti-NRA crowd includes Delta Air Lines, Hertz, Avis Budget, Enterprise, Symantec (owner of the LifeLock identity theft protection company), SimpliSafe (home security), insurer MetLife and First National Bank of Omaha, which offered a branded NRA Visa credit card.
Amazon, Google and Apple are under pressure to stop offering an NRA channel through their streaming services.
That channel is sort of an ongoing infomercial, showcasing segments about various firearms and gun-related issues, including one about the difficulty of buying an AR-15 semi-automatic weapon in California because of red tape and a 10-day waiting process. The NRA’s correspondent boasted about getting the gun in time for Christmas.
Companies also are aligning with the multitudes of baby boomers, millennials and teenagers taking a stance against gun violence.
As more CEOs are discovering, customers prefer to patronize companies that are in sync with many of their broad social values— improving public safety, saving the environment, rationale immigration policies and more.
Increasingly, companies are being held accountable for their corporate behavior and often are blasted on social media when they disappoint. That may happen to FedEx, which on Monday decided to maintain its NRA discount program and is facing mounting criticism.
And as I mentioned, I’m a long-time customer of FedEx, and opposed to the NRA. Since FedEx is telling me to take my business elsewhere, I shall oblige. I don’t receive any special discounts from FedEx, but they are saying NRA members should.
FedEx said it was keeping a discount deal for NRA members while issuing a statement that tried to distance its views on gun policy from the group’s.
On Tuesday it clarified that the discount program it offers is for NRA members, not the organization itself. FedEx has never provided any donation or sponsorship to the NRA, the company said.
Amazing. We live in a different world now. A better world, but I’m still shocked at how drastically corporations have changed to become socially aware in my lifetime.
Several major companies — Enterprise Holdings, First National Bank of Omaha, Symantec, Hertz and Avis — have ended co-branding partnerships with the National Rifle Association as a #BoycottNRA social media movement picks up steam.
American businesses have become increasingly politically aware and have participated in boycotts over the past few years against states over LGBT rights.
FedEx is still frantically analyzing the math in their corporate headquarters, and hasn’t decided which side to be on: the NRA’s 5 million member base, or with the rest of us. I’ve had a FedEx account for nearly 20 years, but I’ll stop using it if they decide to remain with the NRA zealots.
FedEx, for example, gives NRA Business Alliance members up to a 26 percent discount on shipping expenses.
FedEx has not said anything publicly about its NRA association in recent days; when reached around 4:30 ET on Friday afternoon, a company spokesperson said he had no information to provide.
President Idiot’s latest suggestion is the suggestion of someone who gets most of his information from television or movies. Most veterans I’ve heard discuss this seem to universally think it a horrid abomination of an idea. Trained professionals hit the target 30% of the time or less (different folks have posited different numbers), but a high school teacher is going to protect kids from a massacre in a crowded school hallway? Laughable, except real people will die. And the teacher shortage is about to become acute – I’d guess many teachers would find alternative jobs before having to become soldiers in their own classrooms.
President Trump on Thursday intensified his calls for arming highly trained teachers as part of an effort to fortify schools against shooting massacres like the one that occurred in Parkland, Fla., last week, even as he denounced active shooter drills that try to prepare students to survive a rampage.
“I want certain highly adept people, people who understand weaponry, guns” to have a permit to carry concealed firearms in schools, Mr. Trump said during his second White House meeting in two days to discuss how to respond to the shooting that killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
Teachers who were qualified to handle a weapon — Mr. Trump estimated between 10 percent and 40 percent — would receive “a little bit of a bonus,” he said, adding that he would devote federal money to training them.
A few Tweets on this topic I read yesterday from various folks…
Shooting under stress is extremely difficult. Even for the most well-trained shooters. A teacher is not going to be able to do this. A lunch lady is not going to be able to do this. Cops & soldiers literally get paid to do this & most of them can’t shoot accurately under stress.
There’s little data to suggest putting cops in schools has made the students at those schools safer. The students *are*, however, more likely to be Tased, beaten, body-slammed, and arrested for misbehavior that previously resulted in detention or suspension.
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School had an armed guard. So did Columbine High School. Va Tech has 50 full-time police officers + a dozen private security guards. Fort Hood has 1,000-soldiers in 89th MP Brigade. Cops & guards are great – but can’t solve pblm alone.
I’ve had dozens of teachers write to me so far about the proposal to arm them. And the clear consensus about the policy is that it would result in…. a massive teacher shortage because a number of educators would simply quit.
Making schools a free-fire zone is ridiculous. Donald Trump doesn’t want guns in his own hotels/golf courses, but he wants Mrs. Hettenhausen to strap on a .45 before she starts her English class? And when is she training? Before 3rd period?
Donald Trump spoke in favor of gun rights at the National Rifle Association convention today, but security and staff at several of his prized hotels and golf courses told ABC News that guests are not allowed to carry guns there.
Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s posh Florida club, doesn’t allow guns, a hotel staff member told ABC News.
Trump National Doral, in Miami, Florida, doesn’t allow guns either, a security official told ABC News. The resort would “much rather not” have guns on the property, said a security official with the hotel, who noted that guns are “not to be carried on our property.”
“We’ve had guests that have brought them before,” he said, but those guns “had to remain in their safe the whole time in the room.”
A security worker at Trump National in Jupiter, Florida, said “no” when asked if guns were allowed on premises by citizens who are licensed to carry them.
Trump International Golf Club in Palm Beach County, Florida, also doesn’t allow citizens with concealed-carry licenses to bring their guns on the property, a golf-shop worker told ABC News.
The original Trump plan was to have two armed, well trained and well paid security guards from Blackwater né Academi on either side of each and every child. They would escort the kid from home to class, then form a perimeter around the child. Taxpayer money will funnel directly into Eric Prince’s Seychelles Island bank accounts, and Trump would get a percentage.
The commentariat hasn’t always been much help, either. In the mainstream media, playing the pundit who takes weird and contorted “contrarian” positions is good for your career. A few years ago, libertarian writer Megan McArdle wrote a piece in The Daily Beast claiming that nothing much could be done about guns, so kids should be taught to rush the shooter: “If we drilled it into young people that the correct thing to do is for everyone to instantly run at the guy with the gun, these sorts of mass shootings would be less deadly, because even a guy with a very powerful weapon can be brought down by 8-12 unarmed bodies piling on him at once.” Let the kids handle it! McArdle, by the way, just got a column in The Washington Post.
In The New York Times, meanwhile, David Brooks worried, post-Parkland, that gun-control advocates don’t show enough “respect” to red-staters, while Ross Douthat tied himself in knots explaining why guns should be permitted but abortion banned. Douthat also defended the paranoid right-wing fantasy that guns let us resist the state “when it imposes illegitimately” (good luck with that!) and proposed to reduce gun violence by delaying the age at which citizens can buy AR-15s to 30 (for semiautomatic pistols, he suggests waiting until 25). It’s as though 64-year-old Stephen Paddock never killed 58 people in Las Vegas (and injured another 851) less than five months ago. It’s as though the vast majority of killings with guns, including mass murders, were not committed by grown-up men. Well, at least they’re not having abortions.
Enough with the craziness, and enough with the clever pundits and the quiet politicians and the defeatist citizenry, too. There’s no reason why anyone—of any age—needs to own an AR-15. In fact, maybe I shouldn’t say this, because we progressives seem to be all about winning the MAGA-hat-wearing white working class, but I don’t believe you have a right to own a gun, period
The pay scale for right-wing bloviators must be off the charts, or else these people have no soul. I guess both options are possible. I mean, what other explanation is there for Ms. McArdle’s suggestion that instead of regulating purchase of guns, a better solution is for young children to sacrifice their bodies so that the shooter’s gun over-heats and their classmates can collectively take the shooter down by sitting on him or something. Unconscionable.
I’d also like us to encourage people to gang rush shooters, rather than following their instincts to hide; if we drilled it into young people that the correct thing to do is for everyone to instantly run at the guy with the gun, these sorts of mass shootings would be less deadly, because even a guy with a very powerful weapon can be brought down by 8-12 unarmed bodies piling on him at once. Would it work? Would people do it? I have no idea; all I can say is that both these things would be more effective than banning rifles with pistol grips.
As a follow up to this, the count keeps growing higher…
The murder of Martinez, 32, brought the city closer to 500 homicides this year, statistics show. This year is the first time the city has had this many slayings since 2008.
While the city of Chicago has more working police officers per capita among the five major cities, it has the second-highest homicide rate. In terms of raw numbers, the city will finish 2012 with the highest number of murders in the country, statistics show.
It’s difficult to pinpoint a single cause for the increase in shooting deaths, but some point to gang turf wars, unseasonable warmth earlier in the year and the disbanding of special police units that specialized in tackling violent crime.
Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy blamed the proliferation of guns onto Chicago’s streets and conflict among the city’s larger gangs for the rise in homicides. At recent press conferences, McCarthy has consistently said that while murders have increased, overall crime is down.
[Nathaniel T. Jackson’s] death was the 500th homicide in Chicago this year, marking a grim milestone. The city last reached that toll in 2008.
As of Thursday night, homicides were up 17 percent over last year in Chicago, and shootings had increased by 11 percent, according to police statistics.
Largely contributing to the spike was the unusual number of homicides that occurred during the early part of the year, when the city experienced unseasonable warmth. In the first three months of the year, homicides ran about 60 percent ahead of the 2011 rate.
Not to make light of the situation, at all, but having just watched Michael Moore’s documentary about gun control, Bowling For Columbine, I feel like I should add that it is rare that I feel threatened by gun violence in my normal areas of the city. When walking around, I don’t feel like I am in a war zone. A quick glance at the Near West Side Crime map validates my perspective – in the last month there has only been one homicide in this large area. If one adds in the Loop, the number of murders is still only one (i.e., there were zero homicides in the Loop in the last 12 months).
That said, something drastic needs to be done to reduce the number of gun murders in our city, our state, our country. The answer is not to bring back Al Swearengen and the thugs of Deadwood as suggested by the idiots of the National Rifle Association and their minions. I’d rather try Chris Rock’s solution of making each bullet cost $5,000…
“You don’t need no gun control, you know what you need? We need some bullet control. Men, we need to control the bullets, that’s right. I think all bullets should cost five thousand dollars… five thousand dollars per bullet… You know why? Cause if a bullet cost five thousand dollars there would be no more innocent bystanders. Yeah! Every time somebody get shut we’d say, ‘Damn, he must have done something … Shit, he’s got fifty thousand dollars worth of bullets in his ass.’ And people would think before they killed somebody if a bullet cost five thousand dollars. ‘Man I would blow your fucking head off…if I could afford it.’ ‘I’m gonna get me another job, I’m going to start saving some money, and you’re a dead man. You’d better hope I can’t get no bullets on layaway.’ So even if you get shot by a stray bullet, you wouldn’t have to go to no doctor to get it taken out. Whoever shot you would take their bullet back, like “I believe you got my property.”
I was amused to read about both of these incidents in the same morning.
Compare and contrast this story:
Police in Washington, D.C. are investigating NBC’s “Meet the Press” after the show’s host David Gregory appeared to display a high-capacity ammunition magazine during Sunday’s program, a spokeswoman for the police department confirmed to the Washington Post early Wednesday.
Washington, D.C.’s firearms regulations state that “No person in the District shall possess, sell, or transfer any large capacity ammunition feeding device” even if it is not attached to a firearm. During his interview with National Rifle Association executive vice president Wayne LaPierre on Sunday, Gregory held what he said was a magazine capable of holding 30 bullets.
DC is really strict on gun laws, even after Heller, which tossed out some of the strictest gun regulations. So if there’s anywhere this would be illegal, it would probably be DC. But it sounds like the real issue might be something hard to get a read on beyond what’s contained in the Post article itself.
The article suggests an air of menace in the use of the gun — and that’s not terribly surprising if the situation was an inherently confrontational one (Armey was ordering people out of the office) and Armey associate came with a holstered handgun. But a lot of that is going to come down to perceptions. And the Post reporter might have played some of the gun angle up for effect.
But using a firearm to intimidate someone can be assault.