Tuesday, June 14, 2016

On The Pulse Shooting

Surprising probably no one, reports are out that the Orlando night-club shooter was gay. Also, in what is becoming a pattern, his horrified father turns out to be an anti-American, anti-gay, politically active Muslim. This is, sadly, not a dissimilar pattern to the Ahmed clock (bomb) kid's dad who was also a politically active Muslim.

If you got mad seeing the clock-kid reference, go watch the linked video up top: you might get mad enough that The Omnivore won't get hate-mail over it (you'll have an aneurysm). From where The Omnivore is sitting, two things are very, very clear:

  1. Islam, as it is practiced in much of the world is incompatible with both Western civil rights (acceptance of gays) and 
  2. Legitimizes death in a way that is incompatible with Western morality.
Thinking otherwise is ignoring numerical indicators the same way Team Romney did in the 2012 election. Are you on Team Romney (Blacks-Won't-Turn-Out-Again)? Okay then.

What About The Gun?

Apparently the shooter was met with armed resistance at the door of the club. He managed to kill 49 people and wound about fifty. That's impressive numerically. The combinations that make for high-causality shootings are (a) plenty of bullets and (b) a constricted environment.  Certainly large magazines help with that--but patrons escaping and then blocking the door to trap other victims inside don't help either.

In any event, the spikes here involve AR-15's--although Luby and Virginia Tech used handguns and McDonald's used an Uzi among other weapons.
It seems likely to The Omnivore that an AR-15 might, today, be the preferred weapon of the mass shooter but is not the only one that will get the job done. Considering that this guy was dodgy enough to show up on the FBI's radar, the argument that the current ease of getting firearms was helpful in his quest for mass murder cannot be discounted.

Although the Paris shooters did acquire automatic weapons, it is important to note that:
  1. Unlike the Pulse shooter, they were receiving logistical support from ISIS. That means money, organized crime networks, training, etc.
  2. They benefited from having cross-border connections in Brussels where French-style security forces simply did not exist. This is not the case in America.
In other words, if some legislation had prevented Mateen from legally acquiring weapons, there is at least a decent chance he would have tripped law-enforcement's notice had he decided to (amateurishly) try to buy them through organized crime venues.

It is also worth noting that while organized crime could theoretically provide fully automatic weapons to would-be shooters, we have not seen a mass shooting with one. In other words, although these guys set out to break the law, the current laws in place do, likely, provide protection in the form of limiting the amount of firepower they can get.

As a final point: while Liberals are fond of calling AR-15's "Weapons of War" and pro-gun rights people deride this as the AR-15 is not actually an assault rifle (capable of full-auto fire) the AR-15 is, in fact, basically the same weapon. In a choke-point constrained target-rich environment, fully automatic fire would be within tactical doctrine but the weapons that most soldiers use, although capable of either fully automatic fire (or 3-round bursts), are not generally used in that capacity. Full Auto fire in a battlefield situation is usually suppressive (designed to limit enemy movement and counter-fire) rather than directed against tightly packed enemy soldiers.

In other words, for most purposes, the AR-15 and the battlefield weapon are identical.


The Omnivore is pretty sure that when you mix:
  1. A gay young man who is Muslim
  2. A religious anti-gay father
  3. Islam's willingness to condemn gays to death
  4. ISIS
  5. Easily availlable Firearms
You have a solid recipe for a mass-shooting. The question is: how can you limit any of these. Destroying ISIS is obviously the first step--but after that? Well, the issues get dicey, don't they. The partisan divide is pretty strong too: we allowed a Muslim to speak in Orlando two weeks ago saying that Gays Must Die (be killed out of compassion, apparently).

We allowed a guy who showed yellow flags access to weapons. There are potential conflicts with the 1st and 2nd Amendments right there. 

It is clear that in order to make headway against this sort of extremism, Americans will have to do that which they least like to: Compromise somewhere.


  1. Why is "destroying ISIS" obviously the first step? It would be great for people living in ISIS territory, but a foreign policy response doesn't seem likely to do much for a domestic problem like Mateen, any more than destroying the Nazis has stopped racist neo-Nazis in the US.

    1. ISIS, like Carthage, must be destroyed. It's also the only thing (most) people agree on. Destroying the Nazis has, in fact, put a hurting on neo-Nazis in the US. The fall of the Soviet Union also did wonders against aggressive global communism.

      -The Omnivore

    2. Though a lot has happened in the past 2200 years or so, Ceterum censeo ISIS esse delendam just doesn't have the same ring to it. Also, you advocate a practical impossibility. See, inter alia, Hydra.

      -- Ω