Texas Church Shootings Bring Calls for ‘Gun Control’ Before Facts are Known

By David Codrea

Those calling for more laws will not be able to tell us what additional law would he have obeyed.

Ammoland Shooting SportsUSA – -(Ammoland.com)- A mass shooting incident at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas, has left at least 26 victims dead and another 20 wounded per reports emerging at this writing. An as-yet unidentified killer reportedly dressed in combat gear opened fire on worshipers indiscriminately murdering men, women and at least one child, the 14-year-old daughter of Pastor Frank Pomeroy, who was in Oklahoma and not in attendance at the time.

As has come to be expected, the lack of announced facts from investigating authorities has not stopped commenters to various news stories and on social media from laying blame on guns, on gun owners and on the National Rifle Association. Naturally, the ever-opportunistic Shannon Watts could not resist the temptation to weigh in with typical condemnation of the right to keep and bear arms.

“If thoughts and prayers alone prevented gun violence, we wouldn't be shot in places of worship,” she tweeted. “God calls on us to ACT.”

How? What does she suggest, specifically?

Further feling the hysteria to “do something” are calls from prominent Senate Democrats.

“Sens. Bob Casey Jr. (Pa.), Dick Durbin (Ill.) and Kamala Harris (Calif.) were among the Democrats who urged Congress to act in response to the latest deadly shooting,” The Hill is reporting:

“’I’m thinking of and praying for all those impacted by the shooting in Texas. In addition to offering my prayers and thoughts I also believe Congress must take action on gun violence,’” Casey wrote in two separate tweets.”

Left unsaid is what “action” would have prevented this atrocity. That’s because none could have.

The easy go-to answers, “ban guns,” or ban types of guns, would not work. First, those who commit evil do not obey laws. Second, many good gun owners who realize that would not obey such edicts either, and not only because it’s a fundamental right.  History clearly shows greater evil is enabled whenever a “monopoly of violence” is imposed. Nature clearly shows that predators exploit defenselessness, and that when force is reduced to who is physically stronger, the weaker are reduced to prey.

Perhaps the best advice, especially when a story is breaking and media outlets are scrambling to out-compete each other with scoops and “firsts,” is to take a breath and slow down. Understand that initial reports will likely be wrong, and don’t be quick to buy into them.  We still don’t know much about Las Vegas, and the reasons for that are complex, and in some cases, leading to all kinds of speculation and rumor.

With that in mind, it would  be remiss not to pass along information reported  on the shooter, identified as dishonorably discharged and court-martialed “Devin Patrick Kelley,” and to note reports that means he was a prohibited person. Per ATF:

UPDATE: New reports coming out since this was posted now say Kelly received a “bad conduct” discharge, which would not have triggered the prohibition. ATF form 4473 asks: “Have you ever been convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence?”

This report is being filed on Sunday night. By the time it is published and read in the morning, much more should be known.  In the interim, the best way to keep up with it is to keep up with all the breaking news stories, which you can do via the Google News feed (or some other search engine if you prefer, using terms likely to produce comprehensive results:

“First Baptist Church” + “Sutherland Springs”

This just in– I've seen it on other sources and now see it corroborated on The Washington Post:

“As the gunman exited the church he was confronted by a local citizen who, armed with his own weapon, began firing at the gunman — prompting the suspect to flee in his vehicle. ‘The local citizen pursued him,' said Freeman Martin, a regional director for the Texas Department of Public Service, who said the gunman crashed off of the roadway about 11 miles north of the shooting scene and was later found there dead. ‘We don’t know if it was a self-inflicted gunshot wound or if he was shot by our local resident who engaged him in a gunfight.'” *

That adds a very different perspective to this story.

One thing that will remain constant even as the narrative develops and changes is a basic truth, one Ms. Watts and gun-blaming Democrats purposely leave out of their declarations of piety and prayer – a constant from a 1747 sermon by Presbyterian Rev. Gilbert Tennant:

“He that suffers his life to be taken from him by one who has no authority for that purpose, when he might preserve it by defense, incurs the Guilt of self murder since God has enjoined him to seek the continuance of his life, and Nature itself teaches every creature to defend itself.”

Decide for yourself whether you consider Shannon Watts and gun-grabbing Democrats to be the superior authorities here.

*UPDATE:

“Two heroes exchanged fire with Texas gunman and ran him off road as he fled killing him Murderer Devin Kelley was shot by Stephen Willeford, it has been claimed. The shooter then ‘bled out' after being run off the road by Willeford and fellow hero Johnnie Langendorff.”

David Codrea in his natural habitat.

About David Codrea:

David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating / defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament.

In addition to being a field editor/columnist at GUNS Magazine and associate editor for Oath Keepers, he blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.

  • 42 thoughts on “Texas Church Shootings Bring Calls for ‘Gun Control’ Before Facts are Known

    1. The big joke here is the photoshop composite of the shooter was sent out before his ears were added. It is a fake composite picture. Just look…NO EARS

    2. Blah…Blah…Blah!!! Nothing changes for the Gun Hating crowd.

      Just the same inane, inaccurate drivel from the same Jackboot loving DemoRats I’ve heard for the last 40+ years

      1. Bottom line is that someone down the info-line dropped the ball in reporting the information about the BCD, mental health issues, etc. Until we figure out how to get everyone involved in the firearms purchasing process to do their job, this will happen. When a person is convicted of a crime that would eliminate their eligibility to purchase a firearm, that information should immediately be released to the proper agency or agencies. If there is a change in the subject’s conviction, etc. the information can be redacted and the person’s rights restored. That being said, it is not the fault of the firearm for the shootings. It is the deficiency of the person handling it. People are dying from drug overdoses, being stabbed, being hit with clubs, being strangled with cordage. Whatever! You do not see anti gun rights people wanting to ban rope, baseball bats an medicine. You can not protect yourself with those things. What they want is to take away our rights to protect ourselves from them.

        1. @David Webb – We will never be able to fix the dropped ball issue because the liberals don’t want it fix! They can take our guns, but god help if you want someone’s medical record looked into to stop an insane murderer!

          1. That is because many medical professionals really do not understand HIPPA. The medical diagnosis does not have to be released, only that they meet criteria to be denied firearms. There are many reasons to be denied firearms that are not medical related. Keeping the reply generic does not specify what the rejection is. Of course, many will disagree with this, too and say that this violates it as well. We need to fix the way we report federal violations.

    3. The news was just on about this incident… and, as usual, the photo of the perpetrator showed a much younger, and leaner person. Takes me back to previous cases when the media showed photos of a young “innocent” citizen who has never been in trouble. Now why do you suppose they do that?

        1. If you look at this guys eyes they show no life in them, this guy had no feeling of what he did or was about to do. He was already on a prohibited personswho list for what he did while he was in the USAF. The buns he had were already illegal for him to have because of the bcd discharge he had.

    4. Isn’t it interesting that the shooter’s all complete their mission, escape, and are killed immediately when he is finished with his crime, is always caught by the government, and they already know everything about him or them within hours and sometimes immediately, even if they have no ID that is always in their back packs or rooms, and connected with guns! THE SECOND AMENDMENT IS NOT THE PROBLEM, THE PROBLEM IS THE UNITED NATIONS NEW WORLD ORDER AGENDA 21 ON DEPOPULATION GLOBALIST COMMMUNIST NAZI FASCIST IMPERIALISTIC DEMONRATS AND REPUGNANT NEOCON TRAITORS MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX DRUG CARTELS OF THE FBI/CIA TRAITORS OF OUR REPUBLIC! WHY ONLY IN AMERICA AIMED AT AMERICANS? WAKE UP PEOPLE, THIS IS LAS VEGAS NEVADA, BOSTON, SANDYHOOK, SAN BERNARDINO, DENVER,LAVOY FINNICUN, FLORIDA, ALL THE SAME AGENDA, GUNS ARE THE PROBLEM DESPOTS OF POWER TO DESTROY THE SECOND AMENDMENT. OUR OWN GOVERNMENT IS CONTROLLED BY A HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES INFILTRATED BY DEMON WORSHIPING OCCULTISTS !!!

      1. Well Troy, even if everything that you have written were 100% true, what would you have us do about it? Wake up and do what?

    5. I wonder how much the Shepherd of the flock was paid as he abandoned the sheep? What did his absence have to do with the shooting. Why was that the first information stated by the article. This Sounds like Sandy Hook all over again!

      1. Troy, I read the Pastors 14 year daughter was killed by this low life demon possessed clown. So much for that thought. Prey that God Almighty will help this church body to recover from this terrible crime brought to them by this evil beaning.

    6. I live in the area and I’ve been following local reports on the incident closely. The latest reports I have seen here, indicate that the shooter drove 35-40 miles from his home in New Braunfels to Sutherland Springs, parked at a Valero gas station across the street from the church, then exited his vehicle all “tac-ed up” where he was noticed by local folks, crossed the street and began shooting outside the church, stopped briefly, and then entered the church and began shooting again. Hearing the shooting, a local plumber retrieved his own rifle (of still unknown type, but it’s deer season down here now, so it may have been his deer gun) and took the shooter under fire as he exited the church, aiming at the gap in his tac-vest, which he believed to be body armor. The shooter then dropped his rifle, got into his vehicle and fled the scene. The armed plumber immediately stopped a vehicle driving by, explained what was going on to the driver, and then the driver and he pursued the, apparently wounded, shooter at high speed until the shooter lost control, went off the road into a field and stopped. When they caught up, the plumber got out, rested his rifle over the hood, and yelled at the shooter to get out, but got no response. During the chase the 2 pursuers were on the 911 line with the dispatcher, keeping them advised of the chase, and 911 diverted a Sheriff’s Deputy (most of whom were at that point, responding to the shooting scene at the church), who arrived shortly afterwards. When LEOs approached the vehicle they found the shooter dead inside, and the Deputy at the scene said it was from a self-inflicted gunshot. This is still unclear, but it appears now that the shooter was probably wounded when he fled the scene of the shooting, and apparently either shot himself after crashing his vehicle, or bled out from his wound, or some combination thereof.
      Given his prior military conviction for a domestic violence offense, the shooter could not legally buy or own, a firearm, so, as usual, the existing anti-gun laws failed to stop him. Interestingly, the immediate calls by Democrats to do various things that could NOT have stopped this event, very likely WOULD have made it more difficult for the local civilian response that actually DID stop the event. I’m just sayin’.

      1. Thank you for the comment! Keep us updated if you can. We pray for the victims, families, and your communities! Maybe our lawmakers, first, should consider laws against government cover-ups and concentrate on transparency, and telling we the people the truth! Versus advocating gun laws and restrictions! The hidden info in the release of the JFK files are appalling!

    7. “Perhaps the best advice, especially when a story is breaking and media outlets are scrambling to out-compete each other with scoops and “firsts,” is to take a breath and slow down.”
      True. So true. Watching this unfold on TV, i was appalled by the talking heads. It was a toss up – apoplexy or orgasmic delight. Never saw anything close to being professional reporting. I had to keep changing channels. Finally, one anchor said it was too soon and not to speculate until more information became available. He then drew breath, started speculating and became so exited he was spraying spittle everywhere. That’s when I turned off the TV.

    8. Off the subject a bit — but has anyone noticed the eyes of these various murderers whether foreign or domestic? We used to call that the 1,000 yard stare. Just dead eyes. Maybe I am reading too much into this. And, let’s remember it is NOT gun control–it is citizen control. Hard core democrats. liberals, leftists, socialists and communists all have the same ultimate goal.

    9. This is exactly why my wife and I are armed everywhere we go, yes even when we go to church. I’d rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it. And as far as gun control? I’m sick of the politicians using these type of tragedies as justification to disarm the law abiding citizens.

      1. Amen! Brother, this sounds like another Sandy Hook setup. The first thing they mention is the Shepherd of the Sheep was conveniently not there! Las Vegas story still be changed, ONLY ONES WHO BELIEVE IT WAS PADDOCK IS THE CIA/FBI/DHS AND CORRUPT LVMPD NAZI POLICE DEPARTMENT. THE STORY CHANGES EVER 30 MINUTES. PEOPLE DIDN’T DIE THEY WERE MURDERED BY OUR OWN GOVERNMENT!

      1. Come on Wild Bill – no competent mental health professionals say they have the ability to predict this kind of violent behavior ahead of time. The research shows that our best “hit rate” for such predictions is about 40 percent – yep – chance level. The problem with expecting mental health professionals to prevent this kind of thing, is that if you push them to be more accurate in their predictions, you are also inevitably pushing them to increase the false positive rate. I could prevent nearly all mass murders by simply denying all males the right to have arms (and of course, that would imply the need to search homes at will, confiscate, etc.), because almost all mass murders are committed by males. Of course, doing that would also have prevented the plumber who shot the mass murderer (in this case) from having a gun either; and he’d be more likely to follow any relevant gun laws than the shooter anyway, who obviously didn’t. China and the old USSR routinely incarcerated all kinds of dissidents in psychiatric facilities instead of jails, and that’s absolutely NOT a path we want to go down. The AMA, APA, et. al. are VERY liberal organizations that, if given the authority to do so, would probably start admitting any Trump supporters to psychiatric facilities, not to mention anyone who owns guns, much less posts a photo of them on Facebook! I would certainly not want most of the “mental health professionals” I know, to have the authority/ability to force treatment or psychiatric admission on people they just think might someday get violent.

        In theory at least, here in America, you have to actually commit a crime FIRST, before you can be denied your rights (and believe me, your rights are denied when you are committed in a psych ward or facility). Just posting stupid things online doesn’t count as committing a crime (yet, although the liberals are working on it!). The TX shooter illegally owned several guns, so maybe law enforcement should have taken an interest – that was actually a CRIME he was in the act of committing before the shooting. I realize there are insufficient resources to check everyone’s Facebook posts against the NICS, and maybe the USAF never even reported his history of domestic violence to the NICS anyway, but the same issue and more (like medical privacy rights) also prevent the mental health community from doing anything in cases like this. Suppose you were a psychologist who had previously treated the shooter and you thought he was likely to get violent if stressed out at some time in the future. What would YOU do? To whom would you report your concerns, and what would THEY be able to do? I have reported such concerns to the police in the past (and they were a lot more immediate than “sometime in the future”) and was told that nothing could be done until my client actually committed a crime. So, even if we COULD predict who was going to commit such an act, there’s damn all anyone can do until the person actually commits a crime. And frankly, that’s a lot better than what we’d have if mental health workers could get just anyone they thought might get violent someday, incarcerated (including psychiatrically committed).
        Frankly, the only solution I can see, that won’t violate people’s rights all over the place, is to have people on hand who can just shoot the SOB as soon as he shows up and pulls out his gun. In fact, I’m surprised that no one in this congregation was carrying, given the demographics involved.

    10. I really wish the media would quit plastering the picture of these killers on the front page of every article they produce. Giving notoriety to these people is exactly what they want. A demented and depressed individual probably in mind altering drugs see this as a way to make meaning of their pathetic lives. They know they will have their picture wallpapered across the tv screams and newspapers across the nation and self martyrizing themselves for eternity. This needs to be stopped.

      Report about them in the lowest form possible and provide details of how and why it happened but the report on the real tragedy and glorify the victims and their family and help by restoring their faith in people and their communities with compassion and prayers. By doing this hopefully these degenerates will not see any glory in their actions. The media should treat them as the scum they are and minimize their previous existence.

      1. Erasing facts is what the communists do. The guy is dead. He gets no notoriety from people knowing who he is. Letting the government black hole information about these criminals is more dangerous than the killers themselves.

    11. Most outlets are reporting his discharge as a Bad Conduct (though CBS managed to report it as a BCD _and_ a DD), but the conviction was apparently for three counts of domestic assault (2 on spouse, 1 on child) so he was still a prohibited person. Reports also have it that he bought his AR at a store, so I’m guessing it was BCD and the Air Force never reported it to NICS. I seem to recall that military conviction reporting has been spotty for anything but Dishonorable Discharges.

      Most reports say a man named Stephen Willeford shot the asshole, who then dropped his rifle and took off. Willeford and Johnnie Langendorff chased him in a truck, caught up when the guy went off the road, and held him at gun point till the police arrived. The shooter apparently bled out from Wileford’s shot in the mean time. So gun control failed, and an armed citizen succeeded.

      1. Could he have bought the weapon on base do they do the NICS at all ? That’s where I bought my first pump shotgun, bought it at a substantially reduced price .

        1. Yes, the BX/PX runs a NICS check for every firearm purchase.
          However, these days AAFES jacks up the price, so even though you pay no sales tax, in many cases it’s still cheaper to buy online.

    12. For the next few days the media will assign teams to spend all their time trying to find any dirt on the armed citizen who stopped the murders, so they can smear him. Parking tickets, a late child support payment? You can be sure they will do everything they can to turn the hero into a monster. Failing that he will be ignored.

      1. @DonP – and they will not credit the ‘armed’ citizen with stopping the shooter! They will bend everything to fit what they want to say!

    13. Well – here we go again. The Gun Control Act of 1968 obviously did not work so in the eyes of the moronic leftists, we need another Gun Control Law. This asshole was nothing but an evil punk, and its too bad somebody didn’t take him out before he killed so many innocent people.

    14. “The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles.”

      “An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it.”
      ….. COL. JOHN DEAN “JEFF” COOPER

      1. If we truly want to stop these types of crimes:
        1. Stop having gun free zones.
        2. Make all states issue CCW to eligible applicants.
        3. Most importantly make it a Federal Crime to publish the name or likeness (photo, or drawing) of the criminal. Take away their 10 minutes of fame and glory. Make them invisible.Don’t give them that footnote in history they all want. No fame. no publicity, or public recognition and most of these sick bastards will stop. They want to go down in the history books and be in the public eye.

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