Closed caption text of my discussion with Paul Helmke on Fox News today

There are a few typos and other errors in this, but one gets the gist of what was said.

Megyn: Should tougher restrictions be placed on gun purchases and ownership in the wake of the tragedy, john lott is a Fox News contributor and the author of "more guns, less crime" and Paul Helmke is the president of the brady campaign to prevent gun violence joins us, gentlemen, thanks for being here, appreciate it.
Lott: Thank you.
>> Megyn: John, let me start with you to respond to the congresswoman, who -- the statement gets a lot of feedback from people when you say, guns kill.
Lott: Well, guns do kill and make it easier for people to kill others but they also make it easier for people to defend themselves, from -- and prevent crime from happening and the question that concerns everybody, is, what is the net effect they have on -- net they save more lives than they cost and the evidence is pretty strong that they do.
Megyn: Paul, there had been history with this particular gunman, to -- mental health history and he was kicked out of a local college according to the reports for mental instability and had a couple of petty-ante arrests that were basically massaged to the point where they didn't show up on his criminal record and those might otherwise have prevented him from getting a gun but in this case there were no impediments.
Helmke: Obviously what we are doing in terms of gun laws is not working. At the national level we do not have many gun laws and the ones we do have, loopholes an arizona basically has no laws restricting guns and everyone can get a gun and take it pretty much anywhere and what we need to talk about is how do we prevent these things from happening and somehow the military when the fellow tried to enlist, knew there were problems and turned him down and the college knew there were problems and said he couldn't back without a certificate from a psychiatrist and his classmates knew he was disturbed but none are reason to bar someone from buying as many guns as they want in the country. That is part of the problem.
>> Megyn: What about that, the institution, the school in particular had a longer exposure to him, you know, when you go to apply for a gun you don't sit in a class with the person who is going to sell it to you. Is there anything that can be done to tighten up the system in a way where we could prevent truly evil-doers like this guy, from getting their hands on a weapon?
Lott: Well, the person wasn't involuntarily committed. But you can look at other countries around the world. Western europe which has as many of these large multiple victim shooting that's u.S. Does, though they don't get the same attention, because, they are in all of these different countries, like germany, for example, has the two worst k-12 public shootings in word history, in the last ten years. But, a year to get a gun, you have to under go a psychological screening test, and there is -- there are things that they have to do to get a gun in france or germany or the u.K., Gun control proponents aren't proposing in the u.S. And yet are not stopping those attacks, that are occurring.
>> Megyn: Paul, you know, in part, is this a knee-jerk reaction?
Helmke: You know, we see somebody commit violence with a gun and, we just want to make sense of it and don't want it to happen again and we say, what can we do? We can't find all the would-be assassins in the world and o'so, get rid of the guns. Is it too easy to blame guns. >> Guns are part of it and that is part of what we don't deal with and since columbine we did nothing, and after virginia tech we basically did nothing and after the shootings of police officers last year we did nothing and if john's theory were right, more guns meant less crime we should be the safest country in the world and we aren't. Arizona is one of the states, anyone can carry a gun anywhere and, at the safe way store –
>> Megyn: don't you wish they were, and you look at -- looked at the situation, don't you wish somebody there had a gun other than the crazed gunman.
>> Helmke: The person fired so quickly. And, again that is part of the problem. Until 2004, you could not have a clip that held more than ten rounds and after the assault weapons ban expired you can get the expanded clips and he got the rounds off before anyone reacted and that is part of the problem.
Lott: The murder rate has fallen nationally since 2004 and there is no study that goes in support of what he says, and i wish there were magic bullets and what happens is, many times, unfortunately the gun control laws are unproductive, when you ban a began gun, the criminal, it makes it easier to commit the crimes, if i ban guns at virginia tech, a law abiding teacher who can carry it anyplace else in the state, he --
Helmke: talk about arizona, john, where there are none of these guns –
Lott: there are gun control laws in arizona and the whole country, you have to have a background check anyplace in the country --
Helmke: arizona you can go to a gun show and if you go to the right table, no background check –
Lott: no gun show involved in this at all.
Helmke: You can carry it anywhere.
>> Megyn: Guys, listen, you have teed it up adequately, and it feels like we're at the same place we always were. Helmke: We could do better and i hope incidents makes us at least talk about it and try and figure out a better way to deal with it.
Lott: I hope we don't have a knee-jerk reaction that causes problems.
>> Megyn: Talking about it it always a good thing, thank you so much, all the best to you.

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Blogger Dbowhunter said...

Thanks for being a messenger for our views.

Great job.

1/09/2011 11:05 PM  
Blogger Chas said...

"Megyn: Should tougher restrictions be placed on gun purchases and ownership in the wake of the tragedy?"

Americans pay lip service to freedom, but when the going gets tough, the first thing they think about isn't freedom, it's restriction. Despite their Fourth of July rhetoric about freedom, most Americans instinctively regard freedom as a problem and government enforced restriction as a solution.
Even in America, one must struggle to be free.

1/10/2011 4:37 AM  

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