‘Public Health Summit’ Typifies One-Sided National Approach to ‘Gun Violence’

Anti-gunners are trying to turn gun ownership into a public health problem. (Dave Workman)

U.S.A.-(Ammoland.com)- A controversial two-day “public health summit” held near Seattle typifies the one-sided approach toward solving the nation’s so-called “gun violence” dilemma because the discussion over two evening sessions failed to include important representation from specialists on gun safety: gun owners and representatives from any firearm rights group.

Elsewhere around the country, whenever the news media reports on the gun issue, almost invariably gun control groups are labeled “gun safety” advocates while the Second Amendment community is referred to as “the gun lobby.” This apparently justifies the exclusion of gun owners from discussions that ultimately affect their rights.

And making guns a “public health issue” has become a cornerstone of the gun prohibition crusade on the national and state levels. What is currently happening in Seattle is a microcosm.

As noted by the West Seattle Herald, the summit, held over the course of two evening sessions in White Center, a suburban community immediately south of Seattle, saw representatives from the King County Department of Public Health, Harborview Medical Center, Seattle Children’s Hospital, the Alliance for Gun Responsibility, Moms Demand Action and “community leaders working with youth, gun violence survivors, and elected officials from King County, Seattle, and surrounding communities.”

Missing from the agenda were certified firearms instructors, gun dealers, range operators and representatives from such groups as the Second Amendment Foundation and Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, or the National Rifle Association. Washington State gun rights activists were suspicious from the outset because the national headquarters for both SAF and CCRKBA are located just a few miles away in the City of Bellevue. There are at least two popular indoor shooting ranges and gun stores within easy travel distance to the summit location, as well.
SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb summed it up tersely.

“This isn’t about public health,” he said. “This is all about politics.”

The Seattle area has become a hotbed of gun prohibition politics over the past five years, largely fueled by wealthy anti-gunners who, according to Second Amendment activists, have “weaponized their wealth” in an effort to turn the right to bear arms into a tightly-regulated privilege.

The King County Board of Health organized the event. Gottlieb, who also chairs the CCRKBA, told a reporter from local NBC affiliate KING 5 News, “They are trying to make gun ownership a communicable disease, and it is really kind of stupid.”

Earlier in the week, SAF launched a national campaign to end so-called “gun-free zones.” It not only raised the hackles of the Seattle-based Alliance for Gun Responsibility but served notice to anti-gunners across the map that just because the National Rifle Association currently appears to be in disarray, the gun rights movement overall remains aggressive and is maintaining its momentum.

According to the Health Board’s website, “In the absence of federal and state action on common-sense gun safety laws, King County must take action to protect our residents from gun violence. Much of this work must include shedding light on the impact firearms have on the health and safety of King County residents, while taking steps to limit their impact.”

The proposed “gun safety” action plan agenda includes these items:

  • Require disclosure of information on health risks related to firearms. At retail locations, signs will be posted at entrances and where firearms are sold. At ranges, they will be posted at the entrance and where used. Signs will be available in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Russian, Somali, Chinese, Korean, Ukrainian, Amharic and Punjabi on the Public Health – Seattle & King County website.
  • Require gun owners to securely store firearms and ammunition at all times, on all premises. (There is no definition of “secure storage” in the plan.)
  • Work with youth and young adults to assess and provide recommendations for reducing gun violence that they experience.
  • Require that the King County Sheriff’s Office destroy working forfeited weapons, including those that have been turned in by owners.
  • Establish a work group tasked with developing gun safety and gun violence prevention strategies based on proven public health models.

Alarming to gun owners was this footnote: “These proposals are just the beginning.”

This effort is spearheaded by King County Councilman Joe McDermott, a former state legislator and one-time congressional candidate who has pushed gun control in the past. When he ran to succeed former Congressman Jim McDermott (no relation), his campaign literature included this statement: “For too long, politicians in Washington DC have kowtowed to the National Rifle Association. It is past time that we pass tough background checks, ban military style assault weapons plaguing our communities and once and for all hold gun manufacturers liable for the over thirty thousand deaths they cause in our country every year.”

So, when McDermott recently asserted to the Seattle Times that he had no legislative goals, rights advocates including Gottlieb were incredulous, and not without reason.

The county health board’s website offers action plan goals, and this statement:

“We expect and demand they (the Legislature) use their power to save lives, or at the very least, get out of the way and give us the local control to do it ourselves. If and when the state preemption law is repealed by the Washington State Legislature, the King County Gun Safety Action Plan will immediately move to:

  • Ban the sale and possession of semi-automatic, high velocity weapons
  • Ban the sale and possession of high capacity ammunition magazines
  • Raise the age to 21 for all firearm purchases and possession
  • Establish a waiting period before taking possession of a firearm after purchase
  • Require firearm safety training before taking possession of a firearm after purchase

Critics contend that this is the same “wish list” that Democrats and their gun control supports have been pushing in the Legislature in Olympia. High on that list is repeal of state preemption, which has been the law in Washington for more than 35 years. This statute has served as a model followed by other states in crafting their own preemption laws. Anti-gunners would like nothing better than to strike down the model.

There is no small irony in all of this. Gottlieb, in a conversation with Ammoland, noted that Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership (DRGO) – founded some years ago by pro-gun physicians – is now under the SAF umbrella and is an important project. One of DRGO’s main interests is what it calls “boundary violations,” when doctors begin asking patients about firearms in their homes. This happens all over the country.

Gottlieb personally has become a leader in a suicide prevention effort in Washington State. Working with the Forefront program at the University of Washington, he has brought together gun safety experts including retailers and range operators, to work with pharmacists and others to reduce suicides in Washington State.

RELATED:

Gun-Free Zones Are Shooting Galleries For Maniacs; End Them


Dave Workman

About Dave Workman

Dave Workman is a senior editor at TheGunMag.com and Liberty Park Press, author of multiple books on the Right to Keep & Bear Arms and formerly an NRA-certified firearms instructor.

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    tetejaunWild Billras52Pupistafreewill Recent comment authors
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    tetejaun
    Member
    tetejaun

    In 1962, I drove my brother, who was 13, to the gun store in Brownsville, Oregon. He wanted a pistol as he spent a lot of time in the mountains. The Gun Store owner set out several pistols. My brother chose a Ruger Single Six. The store owner handed the pistol and a box of ammo to my brother and said “Take it down to the river and try it out. See if it is what you want”. So, we did. Minutes later we were back, paid the man and went on our way. IF YOU CANNOT UNDERSTAND THIS STORY,… Read more »

    ras52
    Member
    ras52

    tetejaun, that is a great story. Those were the good ole days when it comes to buying a new gun.

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @ttj, and ras, that is a great account. If our young people are to ever know the freedom that is their heritage, we are going to have to work harder than ever, contribute more than ever, and screen more thoroughly than ever.

    tetejaun
    Member
    tetejaun

    It was the honesty and freedom, not to mention the Honor of being an Americans.
    The Gun Shop owner knew us but as Americans our trustworthyness was beyond reproach.
    He handed us the gun and ammo and said “Here, go try it out” and out the door we went.
    NO WHERE in the United States would you do such a thing today. Far too many people these days have no Honor.

    Pupista
    Member
    Pupista

    360,000,000 guns in America. Up to 3 million defensive gun uses yearly. (Kleck / CDC)

    19,000 pneumonia deaths each year (CDC), not an epidemic.

    18,000 unjustified gun deaths per year, (FBI / CDC) not an epidemic.

    Every death is tragic, but unjustified gun deaths in our country is not an “epidemic.” Words mean things.

    tetejaun
    Member
    tetejaun

    The anti-American communist democrats must disarm Americans to institute their communist America.
    Cowardly Americans, just too fat and with a house full of ‘stuff’, are too pampered to oppose the communists. American kneel to the tyrants and say “Yes, you are my master” as they obey un-Constitutional ‘gun control laws’.

    Gun control is about PEOPLE CONTROL and nothing more. If Americans continue to refuse to stand and fight for their God-given Rights, REFUSE to obey the Constitution and kneel before tyrants, they are condemning their progeny to the slow death of slavery under communism.
    Cowardice has its consequences.

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @ttj, You know the old saying, “The word politics comes from the greek word POLY, meaning many; and the word TICKS, meaning blood sucking parasite!”

    freewill
    Member
    freewill

    The website world life expectancy ranks the U.S 88th world wide in death by violence..87 countries with strict gun controls have a higher murder rate than the U.S…Allen Gottlieb of the second amendment foundation needs to pull out of the national fight and clean up the cesspool of Washington State..Its where he’s based out of!

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @freewill, Allen Gottlieb needs to do both. Make a contribution so that he can.

    Laddyboy
    Member
    Laddyboy

    Here is ONE IMPORTANT FACT that the CONTROLLERS do NOT want the average American to know!
    There is NO SUCH THING AS GUN VIOLENCE!!!!!!!
    INANIMATE OBJECTS CANNOT COMMIT ANY FORM OF VIOLENCE!!!
    Only a living, breathing being or animal can commit VIOLENCE!!!!
    Therefore, this entire “conference” IS being held by GRIFTERS and LIARS and IS all about performing a HOAX and TOMFOOLERY to HOODWINK people who do not understand!!!!!!

    ras52
    Member
    ras52

    Laddyboy, great post.

    Deplorable Bill
    Member
    Deplorable Bill

    Being armed IS a GOD given MANDATE–an order, a requirement to mankind. Luke 22:36 is a good example. HE requires if a man has no sword (the assault weapon of it’s day) he is to sell his clothes and get one. Paraphrased, but you get the idea. It is man’s greed to rule over his fellow man that man made regulations come from. Mao did this, Stalin did this, Pol Pot did this, Hitler did this and the most evil people in the world are either attempting or doing this. Communism and socialism cannot be fully implemented while their subjects… Read more »

    tetejaun
    Member
    tetejaun

    It falls, simply, into two categories:
    1. Kneel as cowards and obey the un-Constitutional ‘gun control laws” the tyrants set.
    2. Refuse to obey un-Constitutional’ gun control laws, like the Founding Fathers, our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution demand.
    The American PEOPLE are the ultimate POWER and AUTHORITY in the United States. The PEOPLE are the master, government is the servant, so stop kneeling.
    Unfortunately, cowardice and apathy have very tight grips on the America citizens.

    Wass
    Member
    Wass

    Alan Gottlieb is correct, this conference was “about politics”. Unfortunately, when it comes to politics, the proponents of gun control, as well as liberals and the Democratic Party in general, are more skilled at molding public opinion (propaganda) than we are. There is no alternative for gun rights advocates to advance and defend their cause other than to attack the gun banners forcefully, exposing their agenda while proudly proclaiming the moral high ground. Their posturing for “public safety” is ludicrous. If there were an honest and genuine concern, they would welcome the input from the gun owning community, instead of… Read more »

    Get Out
    Member
    Get Out

    I was expecting one of the anti-gunners would at least mention that criminal control and punishment could be a deterrent as well, no such luck. Anti-gunners have their rose colored glasses on that if they take weapons from the law abiding it’ll keep the criminal element from using their guns on a defenseless society, we already know that they won’t turn their guns in.

    Tionico
    Member
    Tionico

    Durn Tootin’ guns are a public health issue. If I am ever in a place where some nutjob comes in and begins bashing folks for no reason, or, even more serious, takes out HIS gun and begins shooting, MY HEALTH will immediately depend on whether I am armed and able to protect/defend myself and those round about me. Thus it IS a public health issue. Ask Aaron Feis, the coach and counsellor at Douglas High Schoo in Parkland Florida wh, when the whackjob who SHOULD have been in jail for multiple felony charges, began shooting up that school. Mr’ Feis’… Read more »

    mcb
    Member
    mcb

    If it is true that our Right to keep and to bear arms is a God given unalienable Right, then why is it that it has been “regulated” to the degree that no other Right has suffered. No one gets training and a permit to go to church or synagogue. No one gets a background check or waits three days before speaking freely. We get the government we allow not the government we deserve. Yes it matters that we stand up to the socialists. How many are planning to show up to this “meeting”? That number should be equal to… Read more »

    Hilliam
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    Hilliam

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    KDad
    Member
    KDad

    Get off this platform, asshole!

    JPM
    Member
    JPM

    More people are killed in this country by doctors’ and hospitals’ “mistakes” than are killed by guns. The wrong medications, too much or too little medication, surgical screw-ups, wrong diagnosis, etc., kill more individuals EVERY YEAR than all the mass shootings in this country combined. How ’bout a “Public Health Summit” on quacks and incompetent medical professionals?

    gregs
    Member
    gregs

    you are right on that point, but leftists will lie about anything to get their way, as a matter of fact everything that they say is a lie, it’s just that many people believe the lies. hypocrisy does not stick to leftists because they have the leftist lame stream media pushing their agenda/running cover for them.

    joefoam
    Member
    joefoam

    What else could you expect from a crowd of anti-gun crusaders. Of course, gun control.

    Rand
    Member
    Rand

    We have these meetings in federal govt all the time. A favorite employee is chosen to chair the group. Other favorites are chosen to fill the seats with no expertise in the subject because that would cause problems with the agenda. The chair is given the agenda and final outcome. A meeting is held with lots of discussion to lend credibility and the appearance of stakeholder buy-in (contrary stakeholders not invited). The chair keeps the agenda on track. There may be many more meetings over weeks and even years. The final outcome is the same as what was given to… Read more »

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    If every person in the USA thought that private gun ownership was a “national health problem” that majority could not stop the minority (of one person) from owning a gun because a Right is the ability to do something and no one can legally stop you.

    Alan in NH
    Member
    Alan in NH

    That’s it right there Wild Bill. ” Unalienable rights” means that no matter if you are in the minority, even a minority of only one, yourself, that no one can take your civil rights away from you. That’s the basic difference between a true democracy and a republic. If any majority of the people want to change it, there is a peaceful way to change the Constitution. Then there is the other way that I don’t think they have the guts to do.