By Andrew O’Reilly, 11-9-17 at Fox News:
The armed civilian who used his AR-15 rifle to stop Sunday’s mass murder of 26 Texas churchgoers has been hailed, rightly, as a hero, but Stephen Willeford is hardly unique. A number of armed American citizens have also used their firearms to stop or limit mass killings.
As horrific as Kelley’s rampage was, it could have been much worse if it wasn’t for Stephen Willeford.
Experts may disagree on how the number of mass shootings stopped by civilians is counted. Do off-duty police officers count as civilians? What about military members? And how many people need to be killed or injured for it to be considered a mass shooting? But there are a number of incidents over the last 20 years where an armed bystander helped prevent further tragedy.
Here are a few examples of such incidents:
— In 1997, the assistant principal of Mississippi’s Pearl High School, Joel Myrick, used the .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol he kept in his truck to detain 16-year-old Luke Woodham after the teenager stabbed and bludgeoned to death his mother at home and killed two students and injured seven at the high school.
— A decade later, in 2007, Matthew Murray killed four people at Colorado Spring church before being shot by church member and volunteer security guard Jeanne Assam.
— Last April, an Uber driver with a concealed-carry permit shot and wounded a gunman who opened fire on a crowd of people in Chicago’s Logan Square.
— This September, an usher at a Tennessee church used his personal firearm to subdue a masked gunman who had already killed one woman in the church’s parking lot and injured six others inside.
Gun-rights advocates say that not only do these gun-carrying civilians prove that an armed populace can help mitigate the death toll of a mass shooter, but could also prevent mass shootings as a whole from happening.
Avery Gardiner, the co-president of the Brady Campaign, said in a statement provided to Fox News. “Put simply, the myth that the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun is unsupported by facts or research. The killer in this mass shooting should never have had access to a gun in the first place, given his criminal record.”
“These killers all say they target places where people normally don’t carry guns,” John Lott, the president of the Crime Prevention Research Center, said. “So concealed-carry acts as a deterrent to these killers and would also stop these shootings from being much worse.”
We can all agree that the shooter shouldn’t have possessed the weapons he did, but the truth is he had them. He gamed an imperfect system, but if that hadn’t worked, he would have found another way.
For Gardiner to say that the good guy with a gun statement isn’t supported by research, tells us that like many others, he is refusing to accept the facts. We just quoted four examples above and others are easy to find if one is willing to look.
That’s one of the many problems with libs – they get stuck on their own myth and refuse to accept facts proving otherwise.