Monday, January 10, 2011


Inappropriate Thoughts on Tragedy

When I read the first accounts of the shooting in Tucson, AZ this past weekend, specifically that 15 to 20 shots were fired before the pause in shooting occurred (during which heroes risked their lives to save others and brought the shooter down), I immediately thought, "he used a Glock." I was right; it's probably a model 19.

But here's the weird part. According to reporters:

As deadly as the shooting was, Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik said it could have been worse but for the heroic actions of several bystanders.

Dupnik said a woman managed to knock a magazine of ammunition from the shooter's hands after he had emptied his first clip of 31 bullets and was attempting to reload. The sheriff's department identified the woman as Patricia Maisch.

The sheriff said the shooter managed to get another magazine into his gun, but a spring jammed or malfunctioned and the gun could not fire again.

During the pause, two men tackled the shooter and held him on the ground until law enforcement arrived, the sheriff said.

The first reports said that the shooter had two 30 round "extended" magazines (I can only find 32 or 33 round magazines) and also two "regular" 15 round magazines. He obviously used the first of the extended magazines and had the second one knocked from his hand by another hero (or heroine) and he was moving on to the "regular" magazines when the gun jammed. A Glock jammed. Extraordinary.

Real gun fans might well use that information to support a belief in the existence of a benevolent God. (I know that sounds lame in the face of this extreme human tragedy, but it indeed could have been much, much worse).


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