It has been more than two years since the Rev. Kenneth Walker was killed in Phoenix with a .357-caliber gun owned by his fellow priest Rev. Joseph Terra. Weeks later, New Jersey resident Stephen McMahon was killed with his own gun after an altercation outside his home. The same week minister Donald Frazier was killed with his own weapon during a botched robbery attempt at his home on the Fourth of July in suburban Houston. During a struggle, the intruder grabbed Frazier’s gun and shot him with it said authorities. Neighbors said they thought the gunshots were fireworks.
It is anathema to gun advocates but heavily armed “good guys” are often killed by “bad guys” anyway, sometimes with their own guns. In January of 2013, Frank Petro, longtime owner of Frank’s Gun & Taxidermy Shop was killed at his gun dealership in Conemaugh, PA. with his own gun. The next day, Keith Ratliff, business manager of the popular YouTube gun show FPSRussia was shot and killed in Carnesville, GA while surrounded with his guns. Ratliff’s show, which featured his friend Kyle Myers showing off the fire power of weapons and triggering explosions while faking a Russian accent, was viewed by millions. The next month “American Sniper” Chris Kyle, arguably the nation’s best shot, was shot and killed on a gun range—not exactly a gun-free zone.
When asked how gun experts and enthusiasts could be victims of the “bad guys” they are armed against, gun advocates always cite the element of “surprise” as if that weren’t the definition of gun crime. Do they think criminals will yell “draw” from a block away like the old West?
When it comes to armed people killed with their own guns, pro-gunners especially don’t want to talk about women. That is because telling women to “arm themselves too” is the way the gun lobby justifies its aggressive promotion of domestic abuser “gun rights.” Both Michigan and Louisiana have weighed “gun rights” against the rights of women to not be killed by intimate partners and SCOTUS Justice Clarence Thomas actually broke his decades long silence to weigh in on the issue. “Give me another area where a misdemeanor violation suspends a constitutional right,” he said, suggesting domestic abusers shouldn’t lose their ability to carry guns.
Yet death at the hands of an armed, irate intimate partner is a leading cause of women’s deaths in the U.S. A year ago, Amanda Cloaninger and her friend Lindy Dobbins in St. Augustine, FLA were shot and killed by her husband hours after he received probation for violating an order of protection. Two days later, Blessing Okereke was shot and killed by her husband in the Bank of America tower in Dallas. The following day, Nuria N. Kudlach was fatally shot at her home in State College, PA– her husband was charged—and hours later Sonja Wells Raine was fatally shot on her job in Pascagoula, MS by her husband. Also shot by enraged husbands during the same week last summer but not killed were Francisca Jew at a donut shop in Devine, TX and an unidentified Arlington, WA woman.
Pro-gun lawmakers rely on the public’s short memory to avoid passing new guns laws. After 18 police officers were shot this summer by legal gun owners who passed their background checks despite clear red flags they went on vacation, hoping we will forget. After the Orlando massacre—the worst in U.S. history—they refused to even ban terrorist suspects from buying guns. Like domestic abusers, terrorist suspects apparently have “gun rights.”