Hey, Handgun Fans: These Gun Victims <i>Were</i> Heavily Armed

The four Seattle-cops were armed, and it didn't stop them from being shot. The "if-only everyone-were-armed" argument was crazy and reckless before this. Now it's been proven beyond a doubt to be ridiculous.
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This weekend's tragic murder of four Seattle-area police officers has blown away one of the NRA and gun nuts' major -- if ancient and tired -- arguments.

A few weeks ago, we asked here why there were few media stories about where -- and why -- the Fort Hood shooter got his gun.

But the media these days isn't interested in doing gun-control stories. Flashing police lights and heavily armed officers scurrying around make far better video.

Predictably, after my blog appeared, I was swamped with impassioned -- and usually absurd -- arguments from gun owners and other pistoleros. People who not only need to get a life, but to start thinking about other people's lives and personal safety realistically, if that's even possible.

Sunday, I watched six hours of Seattle TV coverage up here about the tragic killing of four cops in a Tacoma coffee shop.

All were armed and in uniform, and all were wearing flak jackets.

I got scores of angry e-mails after my HuffPost blogs from handgun lovers, but one argument remained central.

"If those soldiers (or Virginia Tech students, yadda yadda yadda) had been armed, the killer would have been stopped cold. There wouldn't have been a massacre."

The four Seattle-cops were armed, and it didn't stop them from being shot.

The "if-only everyone-were-armed" argument was crazy and reckless before this. Now it's been proven beyond a doubt to be absolutely ridiculous.

Time to retire that one for good, Handgun Nation. Re-staging Tombstone, Ariz., circa 1889 is an irrational, wild fantasy at best.

The problem remains crazy, embittered people -- and this country has no shortage of them -- getting access to handguns far too easily.

This cycle will keep repeating itself until we finally get serious about gun control -- which, along with health care, is truly our biggest life-and-death issue.

I know the politics of this are difficult at best, but a serious, adult dialogue about our national gun sickness has to start at some point.

Otherwise, we'll probably continue to see one or two of these mass shootings a month.

And having everyone packing heat, as we've just seen up here in Seattle, isn't going to stop it. It's a dangerous -- and ridiculous -- idea.

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