LAPD Gun Buyback Reveals Some Gun Owners Are Afraid of Being the Next Nancy Lanza

This Just In 10

Nancy LanzaIf there's one thing that the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School has done it's open up a discussion about guns in America. And when the LAPD ran a gun buyback this week, something interesting happened. People showed up in droves to get money for their firearms. But it's their stories that stood out. For at least some of the folks turning in their guns to the cops in Los Angeles, there was a fear of being the next Nancy Lanza.

Lanza is, of course, the mother of Sandy Hook shooter Adam Lanza. She is a woman who has been demonized by many in the weeks since her son's rampage because the guns used to kill innocent school staff, to murder innocent children, where hers. Nancy Lanza bought those guns -- albeit for self defense -- and her son used them to kill.

Nancy Lanza was a victim in the Newtown tragedy, but it can't be ignored that her guns were used to kill innocent people.

As one mom turning over her gun to the LAPD said:

That young guy shot up all the kids and they blamed the mama because the mama had the weapons in the house.

The details of the Newtown tragedy have forced us to ask ourselves an important question, a question underscored by many during a buyback so large that the LAPD actually ran out of the gift cards it planned to give out in exchange for weapons.

What if that's my gun? What if it's my gun used by someone else? Does my need for a gun outweigh that risk that I could arm a criminal?

Because buying a gun legally, taking care of it, doing the right thing ... none of it guarantees that the gun won't fall into the wrong hands.

We use so many what ifs to justify gun ownership: what if someone breaks in and I have to defend myself? What if someone goes crazy? What if? What if? What if?

So let's flip it. What if it goes the other way? Isn't that just as horrifying?

The intruders so many have recently cited in their reasoning for purchasing a gun can just as easily use a gun against you (in fact studies show that victims of crime are much more likely to be shot than the other way around) or steal your guns. Or, as in Nancy Lanza's case, it could be someone you know, someone you trusted ... who causes a national tragedy.

Is it really worth it? Do you worry about what could happen with your guns?


guns, death, crime


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miche... micheledo

True, it is horrifying to think someone could use something of mine to kill people. But why live in that kind of fear? Someone could butcher my family with MY knives. They could take our baseball bats and beat a teammate to death. They could steal our van and ram it into a crowd of people. We live in a farming community. I sure hope the farmers have thought about the possibility of someone stealing their fertilizer and making bombs. (Sarcasm)

I refuse to worry about how someone might take something of mine and do damage. I am just going to live my life and try to be kind and loving.

atmar... atmartin06

Amen to that, micheledo.  Anything can be used as a weapon by a person with ill intent.  Likewise, a fully automatic Thompson sub machine gun is perfectly safe in the hands of a responsible owner who isn't going to hurt anybody. 

Anyone who sells their gun to the government for a crappy little Walmart gift card deserves the tyranny, danger and oppression that is coming their way.  Good luck when someone breaks into your house to kill your family and the police take 20 minutes to get there, by which time all they can do is bag the bodies.  If you truly love your family, you will protect them. 

nonmember avatar Common.Sense

The sad fact is that for some people NOTHING outweighs their perceived "right" to a death machine. No matter how many children are murdered, no matter how many actual facts you give them, all they will do is sit around with their tinfoil hats giving their precious guns handjobs while s*cking off LaPierre.

fave82 fave82

Jeanne Sager's articles have become predictable and super annoying. Anything else going on besides gun control issues???

Jespren Jespren

It's not a "preceived" right 'Common.Sense'. It's enshrined in our Constitution, using words and everything, something you won't find for your preceived 'right' to: abortion, health care, food stamps, privacy, public education, etc. The American people have the right to "keep and bear arms", that right "shall not be infringed". If you want to get rid of guns (because criminals like Adam L. are ever so good at obeying the law) amend the Constitution.

And yes, some people sold their guns back to the L.A. police, good for them. We have a right, not a requirement. If you don't feel comfortable with guns in the house, don't have them there. But meanwhile all over the country gun sales have hit record highs, and guns and ammo are flying off shelves and backordered for months. Since you will never succeed if removing guns from criminals, many people know the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun.

Sierr... SierraLynn

I don't live in fear of what "could" happen.

sassa... sassandahalf

Jespren-Your "good guy/bad guy" thinking is ignorant.  My greatest fear is an extremist idealogue with a legal gun on a bad day.  People who "interpret" the 2nd ammendment to conceal their fear of life in general are over-compensating for a lack of intellect and civility.

cmjaz cmjaz

Perhaps a Stir blogger could do some research on people who HAVE saved their life, their families lives and/or property by defending themselves with a gun. It happens all the time but is not widely reported since it doesn't fit the 'agenda'. A teenage girl in Phoenix was able to defend herself with a gun recently. The man that held a serial burgler in his driveway by keeing a gun on him, etc, etc, etc. The 2nd amendment was added so that citizens aren't overpowered by a tyranical government. History has shown that it is very easy for a government to become a dictatorship when the citizens couldn't defend themselves from it happening.

nonmember avatar sueBradley

Ha! cmjaz, if the government "comes to get you," you don't have a prayer, even with a semi automatic weapon. You're much more likely to kill a loved one or yourself by accident, rather than killing an intruder.

nonmember avatar Douglas Taylor

It has occurred to me that drunk drivers kill 55 Americans each and every day. We need to combat this and I believe I have several reasonable suggestions we can all agree upon to make our roads safer.

1) Close the homemade cocktail loophole. Cocktails should be mixed by professional bartenders. People at home have no one watching them to make certain the proper ratio of alcohol to mixers is being maintained.
2) Kegs of beer, magnums of wine and liters of alcohol are meant for use by the restaurant and tavern industry only and do not belong in the hands of ordinary people. Limiting the size of the containers of alcohol that can be purchased will save lives.
3) No one needs to buy more than one six pack of beer, one 500 ml of wine or one fifth of alcohol a day. More than that and you must be wanting to get drunk and then drive. Limiting the number of purchases of alcohol will save lives.
4) High capacity highball glasses, large beer glasses and large wine glasses allow people to drink too much in one setting. All alcohol must be served in shot glasses only, beers must be served in 6 ounce beer mugs and wine must be served in 4.2 ounce tasting glasses.
5) There is no logical reason for any alcoholic beverage to contain more than .5% alcohol by volume. Any more than that means the beverage is solely intended for intoxication purposes which would lead to drunk driving.

These are simple, logical restrictions that we can agree will make our roads safer.

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