Monday, May 26, 2014


“My son's name was Christopher Ross Martinez, he was 20 years old and he died last night. Our family has a message for every parent out there: you don't think it'll happen to your child until it does. Chris was a really great kid, ask anyone who knew him. His death has left our family lost and broken. Why did Chris die? Chris died because of craven, irresponsible politicians and the NRA. They talk about gun rights. What about Chris's right to live? When will this insanity stop? When will enough people say stop this madness? We don't have to live like this. Too many have died. We should say to ourselves: 'Not one more.'”

Thus spoke grief-stricken Richard Martinez after his 20-year-old son Chris was shot dead by Elliot Rodger, 22, in the mass shooting at Santa Barbara, California that left six others dead, including Rodger.
His heart-wrenching words have received worldwide media attention.

I am truly sorry for the loss experienced by the families of Rodger’s victims. While I understand the Martinez family’s grief, I believe Chris’ father is directing his anger at those who are not responsible for the deaths in the Santa Barbara mass shooting. The members of Congress who refused to pass any further gun control laws after the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre did not kill Chris and the others. The NRA did not put any guns in the hands of Elliot Rodger.

This and other mass shootings were committed by mentally deranged individuals. The problem is not with the politicians and the NRA. The problem is with identifying the mentally ill so that they cannot obtain or possess any firearms. The laws keeping guns out of their hands are already on the books. The NRA supports those laws. And the defeated legislation proposed by Obama and Biden to restrict the sale of assault rifles would not have made any difference in this case as Rodger used only handguns.

Richard Martinez’s tearful tirade will embolden the gun control advocates, including Obama, Biden and Holder, to renew their efforts to further restrict the availability of firearms. Of course what they and Mr. Martinez really want is to limit gun possession to the police and military only. They believe that will stop those mass shootings and other types of gun deaths. What they refuse to accept is the fact that with millions of guns in circulation, criminals and the insane will still be able to get all the guns they want.

I do not have the answer to mass shootings, but I know that calls to stop the madness by controlling guns is not the solution to that problem. To Mr. Martinez, President Obama, Vice President Biden, Attorney General Holder, Sarah Brady and your ilk: If you succeed in getting the gun controls you seek, it may be harder and costlier for criminals and the mentally deranged to get their hands on guns, but get their hands on guns they will.

1 comment:

bob walsh said...

The father is a criminal defense lawyer. I wonder how many gun possession charges he has worked hard to beat.