The Colorado Club Shooter [UPDATED]

New details are emerging about possible motivations.

WaPo (“LGBTQ club shooting suspect’s troubled past was obscured by a name change, records show“):

Years before he allegedly walked into a Colorado LGBTQ bar with an assault-style rifle, the man now known as Anderson Lee Aldrich had a different name, and a tumultuous past.

Until age 15, he was known as Nicholas Brink, living in San Antonio, public records show. His parents separated when he was a toddler, and when he was 12, his mother, Laura Voepel, was arrested for suspected arson, according to court documents. She was later found guilty of a lesser offense in connection with the same incident.

At age 15, he became the target of a particularly vicious bout of online bullying in which insulting accusations were posted to a website, along with his name, photos and online aliases, according to a review of the site by The Washington Post. At some point, a YouTube account was created under his name, featuring a crude, profanity-laden animation under the title, “Asian homosexual gets molested.”

For unstated reasons, just before his 16th birthday, the young man petitioned a Texas court — with two of his grandparents’ names on the document — to legally change his entire name. His mother’s name did not appear on the petition.

Nicholas F. Brink became Anderson Lee Aldrich, who, at age 22, would gain infamy as the suspected shooter accused of killing at least five people and wounding 18 others inside the Colorado Springs bar known as Club Q. The reasons behind the choice of the new name were unclear.

Whether the events of Aldrich’s childhood had any bearing on Saturday’s horrific violence is unknown. But Aldrich’s earlier existence as Nicholas Brink, reported for the first time, offers possible answers to several key mysteries surrounding the suspected gunman. Public records and databases were oddly silent about Aldrich for the first two decades of his life.

In June 2021, Aldrich was arrested for an alleged bomb threat, one that prompted a partial evacuation of the Colorado Springs neighborhood where his mother lived at the time. He was charged with kidnapping and felony menacing, but was never prosecuted, for reasons that remain unclear. No bomb was ever found.

Despite his run-in with the law, some 17 months later, Aldrich was in possession of at least one weapon, a long gun, which he allegedly used in targeting customers and employees inside a nightclub long seen as a safe haven for the city’s gay and lesbian communities.

Axios (“Colorado club shooting suspect is nonbinary, attorneys say“):

The public defenders for the suspect in the mass shooting at a Colorado Springs LGBTQ nightclub said in a Tuesday night court filing obtained by a New York Times reporter that their client is nonbinary and uses they/them pronouns.

The big picture: The suspect, Anderson Lee Aldrich, 22, is facing multiple murder and hate crime charges over the shooting at Club Q last weekend that killed five people, per Max D’Onofrio, a city spokesperson. Aldrich was injured during the shooting but released from a local hospital and “booked into the El Paso County Jail,” earlier on Tuesday, per the Denver Post.

What we’re watching: Aldrich was due to make their first court appearance via video link from jail Wednesday, according to the Denver Post.

I don’t really know what to make of this information. As is almost always the case in these mass shootings of strangers, the assailant seems to have some serious mental health issues. That doesn’t make the crime less horrific or diminish their criminal culpability. If Aldrich is himself gay or nonbinary, it might have some bearing on whether it constitutes a “hate crime.”

That he was arrested last June is, of course, a huge red flag. But, if he wasn’t charged, much less convicted, I’m not sure what basis there would be to deny him the right to own a weapon.

Whether any citizen should own assault-style rifles is a different question altogether. While, strictly speaking, an AR-style rifle is no more lethal than many other semiautomatic weapons, they certainly seem to play into a macho fantasy for some and have thus become the favored weapon of spree shooters. Then again, there are some 20 million of them in the hands of private American citizens who use them for sporting purposes or to gain a (likely false) sense of security. Given that spree shooters are an infinitesimal share of owners, it’s hard to justify a ban rationally; given that we have no idea who is going to become a spree shooter, though, banning them would give a (likely false) sense of doing something about the problem.

UPDATE (15:02): Daily Beast (“Porn-Star Dad of LGBT Club Massacre Suspect Spews Homophobia in First Interview“):

MMA-fighter-turned-porn-actor Aaron Franklin Brink had an immediate reaction when he learned his 22-year-old son had been accused of slaughtering five people and injuring 18 others last weekend in a mass shooting at a Colorado Springs nightspot catering to the LGBTQ community.

A defense attorney called Sunday night and told Brink, who lives in Southern California, that Anderson Lee Aldrich was under arrest for the massacre at Club Q.

“They started telling me about the incident, a shooting involving multiple people,” Brink said Tuesday in an interview outside his San Diego home with CBS 8. “And then I go on to find out it’s a gay bar. I said, ‘God, is he gay?’ I got scared, ‘Shit, is he gay?’ And he’s not gay, so I said, ‘Phhhewww…'”

Brink, who has appeared in such films as My MILF Boss 8, I Wanna Get Titty Fucked, and Latina Slut Academy, told CBS 8, “You know Mormons don’t do gay. We don’t do gay. There’s no gays in the Mormon church. We don’t do gay.” (The Mormon Church has confirmed that Aldrich was a member but had not been active in some time.)

In a court filing late Tuesday, lawyers for Aldrich, who in 1986 changed his name from Nicholas Franklin Brink to escape his father’s sordid past, said Aldrich is non-binary, saying “they use they/them pronouns.”

However, booking records list Aldrich’s gender as male. Additionally, in text messages from the day of the shooting, which were shown to The Daily Beast by a source close to Aldrich, Aldrich’s mother referred to her son as he and him.

Wow.

FILED UNDER: Crime, Guns and Gun Control, Health, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Stormy Dragon says:

    If Aldrich is himself gay or nonbinary, it might have some bearing on whether it constitutes a “hate crime.”

    I’m sorry, but can anyone point to a single shred of evidence that they identified as non-binary prior to yesterday? Because frankly this comes across as a way of continuing to victimize the LGBTQ community by turning the trial into a huge debate over how authentic trans people are.

    ReplyReply
    29
  2. Modulo Myself says:

    His defense attorney says he is non-binary, maybe as a troll to the completely gullible. There’s no other indication of identification with non-binary. One of neighbors claims he used anti-gay slurs.

    That said, the anti-LGBQT wing of the conservative movement has become so toxic and insane and they are drawing on people coming from Mormon/MAGA/Christian Cult backgrounds and that’s going to include people who have buried their sexuality. The hero in this story is a vet who was hanging out a gay club with his family. Compare that to the impotent bloat of Tucker Carlson screeching about the evil agenda of gender care and how that justifies shootings. The hate attracts people who are not comfortable at all with their true identity.

    ReplyReply
    14
  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Whether any citizen should own assault-style rifles is a different question altogether. While, strictly speaking, an AR-style rifle is no more lethal than many other semiautomatic weapons, they certainly seem to play into a macho fantasy for some and have thus become the favored weapon of spree shooters.

    Bullshit. Just bullshit. Stick a 30 round magazine on it and it automatically becomes 6 times more effective at killing people than the old Remington autos (5 round mags) guys I used to hunt with used. Put a hundred round drum magazine on it and you better than triple the killing power over a 3o round mag. Now add a bump stock. And silencer. And ad nauseum…

    As opposed to me with my old .30-06 bolt action that did everything I needed it to for deer hunting.

    Then again, there are some 20 million of them in the hands of private American citizens who use them for sporting purposes or to gain a (likely false) sense of security.

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Make possession of such a firearm a felony with a minimum 5 year sentence and just watch them get turned in in a buyback program. Those that don’t? They’ll never leave their hiding place in the wall except for a monthly fondling. And the idiot damn well better not get divorced. Hell hath no fury and all that.

    Given that spree shooters are an infinitesimal share of owners, it’s hard to justify a ban rationally;

    What a way to put the shoe on the wrong foot James. Try justifying their existence among the general public first. I await your mental gymnastics.

    given that we have no idea who is going to become a spree shooter, though, banning them would give a (likely false) sense of doing something about the problem.

    Yeah, “Move along move along, nothing to see here.”

    ReplyReply
    16
  4. Modulo Myself says:

    Given that spree shooters are an infinitesimal share of owners, it’s hard to justify a ban rationally; given that we have no idea who is going to become a spree shooter, though, banning them would give a (likely false) sense of doing something about the problem.

    It’s actually pretty easy. Nobody needs a gun that can hit 20 people in matter of a minute. These are toys for idiots who at best are not going to be spree shooters.

    ReplyReply
    11
  5. gVOR08 says:

    Anyone who shoots several other people is pretty much by definition abnormal. I fail to see the point to parsing each shooters particular pathologies.

    Then again, there are some 20 million of them in the hands of private American citizens who use them for sporting purposes or to gain a (likely false) sense of security. Given that spree shooters are an infinitesimal share of owners, it’s hard to justify a ban rationally; given that we have no idea who is going to become a spree shooter, though, banning them would give a (likely false) sense of doing something about the problem.

    The bottom line is that were we to do a dispassionate, data based (requiring data we do not have), cost/benefit study we’d almost certainly ban private gun ownership (handguns, not just pretend assault rifles, especially hand guns) by next Tuesday. Benefit ~= “sporting purposes”. Cost ~= 40,000 dead people every year.

    ReplyReply
    5
  6. Stormy Dragon says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Frankly it strikes me as someone mimicking the transphobic cis Republican strawman version of transness where anybody can wake up every day and switch their gender like a new shirt, rather than the reality of being something people agonize about for years or even decades before taking it as an identity.

    ReplyReply
    4
  7. Jay L Gischer says:

    This is where a red flag law would have made a difference. But the county in question is adamantly opposed to them, and refuses to enforce the red flag laws of the State of Colorado.

    Aldrich has the fundamental characteristic of a spree killer – a very large sense of shame. Or so it seems to me from the bio.

    Again, an intervention of some kind earlier in the process seems like it might well have had a good effect, and I wish we were trying to do this more.

    ReplyReply
    6
  8. James Joyner says:

    @Stormy Dragon: I intuit from the nature of the hazing he underwent in his youth that he was gay or otherwise non-gender-conforming.

    @OzarkHillbilly: Large capacity magazines aren’t inherent to or exclusive to AR-style rifles.

    @gVOR08: The overwhelming number of gun deaths are from suicides. Very few are from assault-style weapons. I don’t have any strong attachment to them–they’re really pretty crappy as firearms go—but don’t think banning them makes much of a dent in the deaths. It might make spree shootings slightly harder, which I’m in favor of.

    ReplyReply
    2
  9. daryl and his brother darryl says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    Nobody needs a gun that can hit 20 people in matter of a minute.

    Nobody needs a bike that can go from 0-60 in 2.5 seconds.
    Are you going to take my Ducati away?
    We NEED to crack down on who can get their hands on these things.
    In almost every case we look back at the record of a troubled person who was allowed to have a machine specifically designed to kill people.
    In the 18th century, when the 2ndA was written “well-regulated” meant well trained and well-disciplined. The training and discipline and licensing of any weapon, not just AR’s, should be commensurate with the purpose of that weapon.

    ReplyReply
    6
  10. drj says:

    As is almost always the case in these mass shootings of strangers, the assailant seems to have some serious mental health issues.

    Exactly the category of person which can be reliably counted on to provide at least an individual or two who are messed up enought to do what the hardcore hatemongers don’t dare to do themselves.

    MTG and her “groomer” crowd want both violence and plausible deniability, after all.

    This is a well-established, proven mechanism. Don’t let the real instigators off the hook.

    ReplyReply
    5
  11. DK says:

    @daryl and his brother darryl:

    Nobody needs a bike that can go from 0-60 in 2.5 seconds.
    Are you going to take my Ducati away?

    How many mass Ducati killings are there each week in America? Are schoolchildren being slaughtered by Ducati on a semi-regular basis? If so, yes, your Ducati might need to be taken away. If not, the comparison is a bit strained.

    Mass shootings are exponentially more rare in countries that closely regulate or outright ban dangerous firearms. This isn’t rocket science. It’s just that older adults in sure countries actually, truly care about the well-being of people other than themselves, and have thus voted for policies that reflect their love of their people and their children.

    Unlike in the USA, where the same cohort sings phony paens to “the children” while voting to mortgage the futures of their kids and grandkids — electing the party of white supremacy, NRA-sponsored mass murder, climate change denial, health and pharma price gouging, tax cuts for billionaires, and unfunded wars.

    ReplyReply
    11
  12. MarkedMan says:

    Then again, there are some 20 million of them in the hands of private American citizens who use them for sporting purposes

    Unless you define “sports” very widely indeed, I think this is an epic exaggeration. The number of assault weapons owners who use them for hunting or competition marksmanship is vanishingly small. The primary purpose of owning an assault weapon is to help with the dress up and make one feel like an action figure he-man, and it pretty much automatically brands you as a man-boy (regardless of gender) in my eyes. YMMV.

    ReplyReply
    8
  13. Modulo Myself says:

    @daryl and his brother darryl:

    People love fast cars and bikes because they’re fun, not because they need the speed in daily life. Nobody who owns a Ducati or a Ferrari is claiming they might need to get work real fast. Gun nuts are so locked in on trying to prove how necessary all of their toys are–it’s more the vibe of a tank-sized pick-up for a guy who goes to Home Depot once a year for a home improvement project.

    ReplyReply
    3
  14. daryl and his brother darryl says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    People love fast cars and bikes because they’re fun, not because they need the speed in daily life.

    Speak for yourself!!!

    ReplyReply
  15. Kathy says:

    the problem with the AR-15 and like weapons ins’t so much the magazine capacity or the rate of fire, but the nature of the wounds the high muzzle velocity of such weapons. In particular cavitation.

    Here’s what a doctor has to say of such wounds:

    In contrast, the injury patterns seen in relation to AR-15 military-style assault rifles are somewhat indescribable. Bullets fired from these weapons exit the barrel at supersonic speeds that are 3x faster than conventional low velocity handguns. The increased velocity rate of these projectiles results in a cavitation effect on impact with the human body, such that the bullet causes a ripple wave of destruction to arteries, veins and soft tissues. Organs that experience high velocity gun injury are left eviscerated. Bony structures that are directly impacted by these ballistic missiles are reduced to rubble. The exit wounds associated with AR-15 firearms are often the size of grapefruits. Simply put, when Surgeons attempt life-saving measures in these cases, there is often nothing salvageable to fix.

    Link

    This is why people hit in non-vital areas often die of wounds, or why some survivors suffer extensive damage.

    There’s no rational civilian use for this type of gun. These are weapons of war designed, quite effectively, to inflict maximum damage.

    Let the cosplay militias have their cool-looking military style guns, or a pacifier, but limit muzzle velocity for guns in the civilian market.

    Of course it’s too late for that, seeing how many guns are already out there.

    ReplyReply
    5
  16. Mu Yixiao says:

    @gVOR08:

    Benefit ~= “sporting purposes”.

    You brush it off as “playing with guns”, but there’s a lot more benefit than just what you dismiss as inconsequential In Wisconsin alone, money raised from hunting license fees (i.e., “sporting purposes”) pay for:

    * Expanded the National Archery in the Schools Program and hosted 700+ students at the largest indoor archery tournament in Wisconsin
    * Deer research projects in northwest and east central Wisconsin focusing including fawn predation and buck mortality
    * Involved hunters in assessing wildlife populations using surveys and deer registration forms
    * Collected waterfowl and mammal harvest and age data, conducted license surveys and banded 11,000 birds
    * National leader in using surveys for birds normally difficult to detect: owls, nightjars, marsh birds
    * Initiated the second bear population tetracycline study
    * Provided wildlife watching opportunities
    * Developed, with partners, a Sharp-tailed Grouse Management Plan
    * Completed northern Wisconsin beaver survey
    * Used turkey, pheasant and duck stamp revenue for wetland, grassland, savanna and forestry projects
    * Managed 178 state wildlife areas across 620,000 acres for hunting, trapping, fishing, wildlife watching and more
    * Launched the Voluntary Public Access Program, which added 12,000 acres of new public hunting land
    * Developed non-forest biomass harvest guidelines
    * Developed the Wild Rice Plan
    * Investigated techniques to restore lake shorelands and assessed wildlife response to lake shoreland restoration in northern Wisconsin.

    And…

    * 3.8 million pounds of meat donated to food pantries in Wisconsin.

    That is not to say that we don’t need reasonable laws regarding gun ownership. Background checks, waiting periods, red flag laws (if they include due process)… all are absolutely reasonable. I wouldn’t be opposed to mandatory safety training–that’s absolutely reasonable.

    ReplyReply
    4
  17. MarkedMan says:

    @James Joyner: You are probably technically correct, but to my mind targeting assault weapons would at the very least lessen the number of crazed loons open carrying and intimidating politicians, health care workers, etc. Dressing up in camo and carrying a hunting rifle just wouldn’t put the same tingle in their deficient balls.

    But if I had my druthers we would ban every automatic weapon of any kind, and require an extensive licensing and training regime before exceptions are granted.

    ReplyReply
    4
  18. MarkedMan says:

    @Mu Yixiao: I’ve got nothing against hunters. In fact, I’ve wish there were more deer hunters around where I lived or worked for the past 25 years. And I really regret giving you a hard time, but that list is just bullshit. Conflating legitimate hunters with the moronic man boys who dress up in desert storm camo, strap on a hundred pieces of “tactical” gear, and march around with assault weapons is just misdirection.

    ReplyReply
    7
  19. Modulo Myself says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Hunting is overall a dying sport, and I suspect part of the reason for this is because American gun culture is so messed up. Regardless, I grew up around hunters and they seemed fine going out with .30-06s. I didn’t hear reports about the deer having a surprising amount of firepower.

    ReplyReply
    8
  20. daryl and his brother darryl says:

    @DK:

    How many mass Ducati killings are there each week in America? Are schoolchildren being slaughtered by Ducati on a semi-regular basis? If so, yes, your Ducati might need to be taken away. If not, the comparison is a bit strained.

    The point is that we shouldn’t be limiting technology. In 10 years the AR is going to look quaint.
    We do need to aggressively limit who has access to machine designed to kill.
    JFC…I had to get a Masters degree, work in the field for several years, and then pass a rigorous multi-day exam, in order to design buildings for people to live in. And then I am heavily regulated, with building codes, continuing education requirements, etc.
    But in many places anyone who can scrape together $600 can buy a weapon designed to kill people.
    Access is the problem.

    ReplyReply
    4
  21. gVOR08 says:

    @James Joyner:

    The overwhelming number of gun deaths are from suicides.

    A) What’s your point?* B) That used to be true, of late it’s about half.

    *We can argue about whether eliminating guns would have a significant or a massive effect on successful suicide rates separately.

    Very few are from assault-style weapons. I don’t have any strong attachment to them–they’re really pretty crappy as firearms go—but don’t think banning them makes much of a dent in the deaths.

    The wildlife people use tigers and elephants to front for saving a whole ecosystem. I have no problem with using pretend assault rifles to front for the whole gun problem, which is mostly handguns. And banning pretend assault rifles would at least be a start, a crack in the dam.

    I will repeat my argument – private gun ownership has huge costs and little benefit. Anybody disagree? And this points to solutions, Pigouvian taxes or mandatory insurance.

    ReplyReply
    2
  22. Sleeping Dog says:

    @daryl and his brother darryl:

    In 10 years the AR is going to look quaint.

    That’s a scary thought.

    ReplyReply
  23. gVOR08 says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Benefit ~= “sporting purposes”.

    You brush it off as “playing with guns”

    No. I quoted James. But since you bring it up, of the gun owners I’ve known, a lot of it is playing soldier.

    OK, back of the envelope, for insurance or liability purposes we value a life at like a million dollars. 40,000 deaths = 40 billion dollars. What’s your list worth?

    ReplyReply
    3
  24. DK says:

    @daryl and his brother darryl:

    The point is that we shouldn’t be limiting technology. In 10 years the AR is going to look quaint.

    And in 10 years, sensible countries not full of NRA shills and selfish morons will have moved to severely restrict or ban whatever new mass murdering firearm technologies pop up, just like they are doing now.

    While the US will still be awash in gun violence, pretending our outlandish, unregulated, unrestricted proliferation of high capacity, high velocity firearms isn’t the problem and there’s some other super secret special reason why those countries don’t have daily mass shootings like we do.

    Hopefully, in 20-30 years American millennials and Zoomers will have enough political power to stop the stupidity. I’m fairly certain that unlike their Reagan-and-Trump-addled parents and grandparents, they won’t sellout their kids’ lives to the corporate gun lobby and bloodthirsty Federalist Society hacks.

    ReplyReply
    4
  25. J.P. Billingsgate says:

    @James Joyner:

    Large capacity magazines aren’t inherent to or exclusive to AR-style rifles.

    That’s correct, but they are mostly exclusive (at least in terms of long guns) to firearms that were or would be subject to the restrictions of the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons ban. Rifles that are not designed around an anti-personnel purpose rarely accept detachable magazines. There are exceptions (the Ruger 10/22 for example), but they are not common.

    The overwhelming number of gun deaths are from suicides.

    While you and I probably share a distaste for inflating firearms death counts by including suicide figures (which is intellectually dishonest), it is also intellectually dishonest to say that the “overwhelming number” of gun deaths are suicides. In 2020, only 54% were suicides. Ini prior years, the percentage that were suicides often tended to be higher, but it was still only around 60%.

    There is simply no question that large capacity magazines (on the AR or anything else) makes it a more effective killing machine. Don’t agree? Then explain why military battle rifles have them, or the tactical rifles that many police officers get issued (including mine).

    As for the whole hunting-use thing, rifles that fire the 5.56 NATO round (or the .223 non-NATO equivalent) are not even legal for deer hunting in more states that not. .223 is only legal as a smaller game round, often popular with varmint hunters. And no one who is serious about hunting is going to take an AR-15 to hunt gophers. They are going to use a Remington 700 or a Savage 110 or something of that type.

    ReplyReply
    6
  26. MarkedMan says:

    @Modulo Myself: I think you are on to something. I can easily see a mature individual not wanting to be around the clowns that represent gun ownership in America today. I went into a gun show 20+ years ago and it was a nightmarish farce full of what would today inevitably be Q Anoners. Racist, misogynist, angressi and paranoid. I’m sure it hasn’t gotten any better since.

    ReplyReply
    1
  27. daryl and his brother darryl says:

    @DK:

    And in 10 years, sensible countries not full of NRA shills and selfish morons will have moved to severely restrict or ban whatever new mass murdering firearm technologies pop up, just like they are doing now.

    Well, I’m arguing for severe restrictions…

    We do need to aggressively limit who has access to machine designed to kill.

    …so I guess we agree.

    ReplyReply
  28. Michael Reynolds says:

    If you buy an assault-type weapon you are contemplating murder. Full stop. There is no legitimate reason to own an AR-15. If you own one, you are thinking of killing another human being. The desire to purchase one is in and of itself disqualifying.

    ReplyReply
    8
  29. Chip Daniels says:

    The number of people who purchase fuel oil and ammonium nitrate for bad purposes is functionally zero. And these items have many useful purposes.

    But that doesn’t stop us from making their purchase subject to stringent registration and tracking regulations and doesn’t stop law enforcement from looking very carefully at anyone buying them together.

    The same can be said of any other toxic chemicals or biological agents.

    Yet its only firearms that somehow are exempt from this treatment.

    ReplyReply
    8
  30. Gustopher says:

    If Aldrich is himself gay or nonbinary, it might have some bearing on whether it constitutes a “hate crime.”

    I’m pretty sure the hate crime laws require hateful intent, not being from another group.

    I doubt this dude’s claims — they sound like trolling, and an acknowledgment that identifying as an Apache Attack Helicopter is not going to fly when he has just shot two dozen people — but if you take a non-binary person and marinate them in hatred for 20+ years, they’re going to be as hateful as anyone else which the same exposure to that shit.

    He is a hate-filled freak who spent his time going to churches promoting hate. You don’t roll around in dog shit without picking up a smell, and the same goes for partaking of hatred as entertainment.

    ReplyReply
    5
  31. Stormy Dragon says:

    I’m not sure the texts from the mom are disposition one way or the other, as there are plenty of legit trans people whose parents refuse to use their trans child’s preferred pronouns

    ReplyReply
    3
  32. Just Another Ex-Republican says:

    The more we find out about Aldrich’s parents, the less of a surprise it is how messed up he is. His father apparently thought he was dead, but upon finding out he wasn’t and that he had shot up a gay club, his first reaction was apparently to be concerned his kid was gay because that would be terrible. Went on to claim that Mormons “don’t do gay”, that there are no gay Mormons at all, and thus his son couldn’t be gay.

    Some people shouldn’t be allowed to have children.

    *Not excusing what Aldrich did! Just noting he was basically a victim of child abuse his whole life by his insane parents.

    ReplyReply
    3
  33. Gustopher says:

    The dude shot two dozen people, killing 5.

    Are the hate crimes add-on really going to affect his overall prison time by much? He’s not likely to be a free man any time even remotely soon.

    He’s just trolling because even after seeing what he has done, he has no remorse of any kind.

    @Just Another Ex-Republican:

    Not excusing what Aldrich did! Just noting he was basically a victim of child abuse his whole life by his insane parents.

    Early reports were that he hadn’t had much contact with dear old dad. I’m sure we will find horrors with the people who were a part of his life though.

    ReplyReply
    1
  34. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    “You know Mormons don’t do gay. We don’t do gay. There’s no gays in the Mormon church. We don’t do gay.”

    My understanding (and it is limited) is that Mormons also don’t do “acting” in multiple pornographic films. If any members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wish to correct me on this point, I will be grateful.

    ReplyReply
    1
  35. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    Jenna Ellis just said that all the Q Club victims are burning in hell.

    ReplyReply
  36. Mu Yixiao says:

    @MarkedMan:

    I’ve got nothing against hunters. In fact, I’ve wish there were more deer hunters around where I lived or worked for the past 25 years. And I really regret giving you a hard time…

    I appreciate that.

    …but that list is just bullshit. Conflating legitimate hunters with the moronic man boys who dress up in desert storm camo, strap on a hundred pieces of “tactical” gear, and march around with assault weapons is just misdirection.

    Except I wasn’t the one doing the conflating. gVOR08 was–and you seem to be. There are ~ 70M self-reported gun owners in the US (so I’d guess that the actual number is closer to 100M, but we can go with the self-reporting number). If we look at the number of gun murders in 2020 (45,222 (43% of gun deaths))–and assume that every one was a different person killing a single individual–that’s 0.065% of self-reporting gun owners committing murder.

    The vast, vast, majority of gun owners do not kill people. The “moronic man boys who dress up in desert storm camo, strap on a hundred pieces of “tactical” gear, and march around with assault weapons” should certainly be watched, but they don’t represent the majority of gun owners any more that MGT or AOC represent the majority of voters.

    gVOR08 implied that there are zero benefits from gun ownership and use–except “sporting purposes”. Put in scare quotes to dismiss it.

    If Democrats are going to hold themselves up as the party of science-based decisions, they have accept and acknowledge when facts don’t support (or directly contradict) their talking points. And then they need to adjust their approach to take those facts into consideration. When the only talking point is “ALL GUNS ARE BAD!!”, Dems lose a massive amount of points in rural areas where hunting is not only popular, but it puts food on the table*, supports ecological initiatives that Dems are fully behind, and provides tens of millions of meals to low-income families–all without a single tax dollar being spent.

    From your comments, I believe you understand that this isn’t a black and white issue. Hunters are important to sustaining a strong wildlife, and they (along with fishermen) are some of the most passionate supporters of laws that promote conservation, preservation of undeveloped areas, environmental protection initiatives, and restoration of wildlife areas that have been damaged by industry.

    @Modulo Myself:

    Hunting is overall a dying sport, and I suspect part of the reason for this is because American gun culture is so messed up. Regardless, I grew up around hunters and they seemed fine going out with .30-06s. I didn’t hear reports about the deer having a surprising amount of firepower.

    I find your comment a bit confusing. The AR-15 fires a .223 round–it’s a “22”. Much smaller than a .30-06, and legally banned from use in deer hunting in several states because it’s not powerful enough to kill the deer. 11 states ban it outright, 10 only allow it with restrictions.

    One pro-gun hunting site describes the AR-15 as “Ideal for hunting smaller game like coyotes, rabbits, foxes and varmints.”

    And… I’m not sure how things are where you live, but hunting in Wisconsin is not a dying sport. The meat market in my small town of 3,000 gets about 5,000 lbs of venison donated every year.

    @gVOR08:

    OK, back of the envelope, for insurance or liability purposes we value a life at like a million dollars. 40,000 deaths = 40 billion dollars. What’s your list worth?

    Back of the envelope. Wisconsin provided 15 million servings of meat. Times that by 50. What is the value of 760 million meals every year?

    What is the value of preserving, cleaning, and refurbishing millions of acres of lakes, forests, prairies, and wetlands? What is the value of preserving species from going extinct?

    As we deal with climate change, what is the value of clean water, toxic-filtering and flood-mitigating marshes and swamps, and carbon-sequestering trees and plants? You’ll note that the list I posted specifically mentions increasing those sorts of things. How many lives will that save in the short term? In the long term?

    @MarkedMan & @Modulo Myself approach the issue with an understanding of the complexity, and a willingness to engage in actual, informed, debate.

    You don’t. You implied that there is zero benefit from guns. I showed you a whole lot of benefit, and you just dismissed it. You–as always–insist that you’re right, anyone who doesn’t agree with you is wrong, and there are no points to debate.

    Please. Step up in public and declare that:

    *Preserving and restoring prairies, lakes, streams, swamps, marshes, forests, and other green spaces is not a benefit.
    *Managing wildlife populations is not a benefit.
    * Allowing people to feed their families for months for a few dollars is not a benefit.
    * Providing tens of millions of pounds of free meat to those in need is not a benefit.

    See footnote below.

    I was able to eat healthy meals because of a gun. We were able to keep our house because of a gun (the money saved on meat went to the mortgage). Add my $1M to the other side. I’m guessing there are tens of thousands (or more) who are alive and healthy today because their family hunted. Are you going to figure that into your calculations?

    You want to know why Dems can’t make any headway in red or purple states? Look in the mirror.

    I’m done.

    I’ll be back on Monday.

    =======
    * My dad hunted deer, duck, turkey, and occasionally small game. One deer, fully dressed and trimmed, would be somewhere between 50 and 75 meals for of the family (Mom wouldn’t eat “Bambi”). For a $20 licence and $2 in ammo.

    A turkey would provide another half dozen meals. Same with a duck or goose. When Mom was digging in the sofa cushions hoping to find enough change to buy milk for her 4 kids, 4-5 months worth of meat for about $100 was a godsend.

    ReplyReply
    2
  37. Andy says:

    Well, I can see the “debate” hasn’t changed one iota, as useless as “thoughts and prayers.”

    ReplyReply
    6
  38. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @James Joyner: @OzarkHillbilly: Large capacity magazines aren’t inherent to or exclusive to AR-style rifles.

    Yeah, AK-47s… You want to tell me why we can’t ban large capacity magazines?

    Really James, I love you. But fuck off on this issue. You are intent on finding a way to excuse the possession of these weapons and their accessories. I can’t. I have my .30-06. I have my 12 ga. I have my .357. I have my .22. What I don’t have is any weapon that holds more than 6 rounds of ammunition. You know why? Because I, who have been subjected to daily death threats never felt the need for more.

    ReplyReply
    4
  39. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @J.P. Billingsgate: Thank you.

    ReplyReply
    2
  40. Just Another Ex-Republican says:

    @Mu Yixiao: For someone criticizing others for not being informed or over-generalizing you are playing fast and loose with statements yourself.

    First, AR’s come in a variety of calibers, and yes down to the .22lr, which is a small game hunter. But the .223 round which everyone thinks of when you say AR-15 is a different beast altogether, and it’s absolutely misleading to say it’s just a .22 or anything similar. Yes, a 30-06 is still more powerful on an individual basis, but conflating a pistol .22 or small game .22lr to the .223 combat round is just…wrong. Seriously seriously wrong. Just google .22lr vs .223 for crying out loud. It’s also playing fast and loose with the fact that available firePOWER is arguably larger than your average 30-06 hunting rifle because an AR-15 fires so many more shots so much faster. There’s more than one factor at play and you aren’t taking them all into account.

    As for your back of the envelope calculations…just no. Wisconsin almost certainly is an above-average state in terms of hunting meat provided, so multiplying * 50 overstates the impact. Also, 760 million “servings” sure sounds like a lot until you remember both the US population and proper serving sizes. At best you are getting about 2 days of meat servings for the country; but I suspect your source is cheating a bit and using federal serving size guidelines, which are very small compared to what people actually eat. It’s not value-less, but it wouldn’t exactly be difficult to replace hunting’s contribution to meat production if we had to. The other benefits you discuss without numbers are just as real, but you seem to be implying that hunting is the only way to accomplish those objective. Like food production, hunting isn’t required to manage public lands properly (even though it helps).

    PS: I actually have no problem with hunting rifles or even shotguns. But military style weapons and handguns? Eh-I’d be fine with banning just about all of them except some true sport pistol shooters. Mostly I’m just objecting to “it’s a 22”. That is terribly misleading at best and flat out wrong at worst.

    ReplyReply
    5
  41. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: Undoubtedly a charming young woman [eyeroll], but I don’t ever feel comfortable making assertions about the fates of other people. It’s part of that whole “judge not that ye be not judged” thing Jesus kept on about.

    ReplyReply
    1
  42. Modulo Myself says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Yeah, hunting is dying away:

    Hunting participation peaked in 1982, when nearly 17 million hunters purchased 28.3 million licenses. Today, however, only 11.5 million people in the United States actually hunt. That’s less than 4% of the national population

    And:

    Baby boomers (anyone born between 1946 and 1964) make up roughly a third of all hunters in the U.S. However, many baby boomers are ageing out of hunting without a younger generation to replace them.

    But how many gun owners are in America? Maybe 70 million or so all supposedly unreachable by us blue state libs because we don’t get how they all hunt? You guys know nothing about this country.

    ReplyReply
    2
  43. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    The enchanting Ms. Ellis was one of Trump’s multitudinous lawyers. Does she know her former client breaks or has broken at least 4 of the 10 Commandments on a regular basis?

    ReplyReply
  44. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Andy: No, this topic and its ancillary digressions does not bring out the best thinking in our cohort–even among our “go to” thinkers. I suspect that most people are simply hauling too much baggage to the topic to react dispassionately.

    ReplyReply
    1
  45. Modulo Myself says:

    @Just Another Ex-Republican:

    *Not excusing what Aldrich did! Just noting he was basically a victim of child abuse his whole life by his insane parents.

    Who were probably also victims? I don’t know…what always gets me about the gun control debate is that if you don’t focus on guns and, say, focus on mental health the results are going to be the same. Mental health professionals are not going to be encouraging to buy guns or be upset about trans people. They will be focusing on actually dealing with trauma and not praying and appealing to the people who gave it to you and buying guns because you need to feel safe from what’s in your head.

    ReplyReply
    2
  46. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: Yes, but he’s not an LGBTQ+, so his sins are all “minor” by comparison. (And yes, I’ve heard people make this exact argument, and it’s just as ridiculous in real life as it sounds in venues like this one.)

    ReplyReply
    1
  47. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Modulo Myself: “Just noting he was basically a victim of child abuse his whole life by his insane parents. […]Who were probably also victims?”

    Yes, that’s the statistical likelihood all right. 🙁

    ReplyReply
    1
  48. MikeSJ says:

    @Gustopher:
    The dude shot two dozen people, killing 5.

    Are the hate crimes add-on really going to affect his overall prison time by much? He’s not likely to be a free man any time even remotely soon.

    Exactly what I was thinking…what difference does it make overall? Maybe I’m being naïve but I’m assuming murdering 5 people gets you life in prison.

    ReplyReply
  49. Gustopher says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    It’s part of that whole “judge not that ye be not judged” thing Jesus kept on about.

    It aren’t we all going to be judged on The Day Of Judgement or whatever it is? Seems like a loophole* where we can say that the lovely Ms. Ellis is a hateful human being who will surely burn in hellfire for eternity if anyone is. I would pray for her soul if she had one.

    *: Christianity is known for its loop holes, isn’t it?

    ReplyReply
  50. James Joyner says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    You are intent on finding a way to excuse the possession of these weapons and their accessories

    I’m really not. My point is narrow: AR-style rifles aren’t technically much different from other semi-automatic rifles. If you look at the various legislation attempting to ban them over the years, they did so on mostly aesthetic grounds: the combination of a pistol grip and one of a laundry list of military-style effects (bayonet lug, flash suppressor, etc.) that have little to do with lethality. We’ve also periodically banned large capacity (more than 10) magazines. Which, again, I have no real problem with (indeed, most of my military career, I was issued 10-round magazines). I just don’t think it’d have much practical effec—especially since all the laws grandfather preexisting arms.

    There are all manner of weapons that don’t meet “assault rifle” criteria that would be just as effective as spree shooter weapons. That most spree shooters seem to choose AR variants suggests to me that they do so for psychological, rather than mechanical, reasons. (Though they are far and away the most popular firearms sold over the last 30-odd years.)

    ReplyReply
    1

Speak Your Mind

*