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Bill Nelson asks Justice for help thwarting cop-killing fugitives

In the wake of the deaths of four Florida law enforcement officers, Bill Nelson is asking the U.S. Justice Department to consider giving hand-held radar or heat-detecting devices that can penetrate walls to deputized federal agents when they have warrants and are on dangerous manhunts. 

In a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, Nelson asked whether such new technologies - including so-called "sense-through-the-wall" devices, developed for use by the U.S. military - should be among the tools provided to agents of federal task forces when they have warrants to apprehend felons considered armed and dangerous. 

Nelson says he’d be willing to sponsor legislation to create a pilot program. New technologies "could greatly shift the odds in favor of the good guys, before they have to enter a building where a fugitive is hiding out," Nelson wrote.

Nelson’s request come after the shooting deaths of two police officers in Miami, and two in St. Petersburg. All were killed while trying to arrest fugitives.

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Martin Pitts

Excerpt from my Blog

Seventeen Cents A Bullet

On January 17, 1936 Hitler's Reich Minister of Propaganda Joeseph Goebbels stated: "We can do without butter, but despite all our love of peace not without arms. One cannot shoot with butter, but with guns."

Now even with the recent proliferation of delirious militant gun people in Fly-Over-America let's try to put some reason in a look at guns and the impact of gunshot trauma on the regular people of our nation.

According to the FBI in Washington, every 58 minutes in 2009 someone in the USA was murdered by a gun: Either a handgun, or a rifle, or a shotgun, or some other unknown type of firearm. This statistic ignores the numerous wounded who may survive only to be subjected to months of recovery or those with spinal injuries whose lives are shattered forever.

Conservatively about 250,000 people are living with Spinal Cord Injury in the USA. Of those about 13% are a result of gunshot wounds according to the American Medical Association. That is 32,500 people who may be paraplegic by gunshot and confined to wheelchairs or sometimes they may be quadraplegics by gunshot and cannot care for themselves at all. In the most extreme cases care would be provided for the rest of their lives by their families or possibly through state and federal crime victim funds.

Last Wednesday morning an LAPD Officer was shot by handgun next to a High School in the West Valley. Luckily the Officer took the shot on his vest protecting him from a lethal gunshot wound.

Earlier this week in a South Los Angeles High School a handgun accidently discharged in a student backpack and wounded two fifteen year old students. A boy survived a hit in his neck, and a girl is in critical condition with a gunshot that fractured her skull.

Two weeks ago in Tuscon, Arizona US Representative Gabrielle Giffords was direly injured by gunshot. A beautiful and bright nine year old girl Christina-Taylor Green was murdered by gunshot. A US Federal Judge John Roll was murdered by gunshot. Representative Gifford's aide Gabe Zimmerman was murdered by gunshot. Her husband George tried to shield her, but Dorothy "Dot" Morris was murdered by gunshot. Dorwan Stoddard tried to shield his wife Mavy and he was murdered by gunshot. A church volunteer Phyllis Schneck was murdered by gunshot. Susan Hileman, Pamela Simon, Ronald Barber, James Tucker, Kenneth Veeder, George Morris, James Fuller, Randy Gardner, Mary Reed, Kenneth Dorushka, and Bill Badger were all wounded by gunshot. The ammuntion that was used cost about seventeen cents a round at Walmart including salestax. The shooter fired thirty three rounds before he was stopped. That's less than six dollars for the ammunition.

The human sorrow from gunshot violence cannot be measured. The medical cost of treating gunshot injuries is multiple billions of dollars every year. The cost of ambulances and emergency treatments at the scene of the violence is multiple billions of dollars every year. And police investigations for gunshot crimes is multiple billions of dollars every year. All these costs are born usually by city and county governments. The federal government's hands are tied by the "second amendment gun people" in Washington.

Now that's enough data for the gunshot murders and mayhem. Think about holding a lit cigarette in your fingers. Okay. Got the image. Now change it to a Glock 9mm gun in your hand just like the one used in the Tuscon murders. Now back to the cigarette. Now the Glock gun. Cigarette. Glock gun.

Now think of a few years in the past. We smoked cigarettes in bars and in restaurants and even in elevators and on airplanes. Sometime in the 1990's a new awareness came over the social consciousness of our nation. We stopped smoking so much. We passed laws to prevent people from smoking in public facilities, and then in work places. Note that one sound reason for the new laws was that each government entity held a responsibility to protect the safety and health of the people. The government may be brought to account for any relinquishing of the government's responsibility to protect the people.

A gun is no different than a cigarette.

Gun people have been spreading the rumor over the internet that President Obama proposed a 500% tax on ammunition. This is untrue. But a heavy tax on amunition for any gun is a good start. Remember that cigarette taxes were almost nothing until the proof about nicotine as a carcinogen was widely accepted. A tax on ammunition and on actual guns sales could help pay for loss of life and care for the people injured by gunshot, especially spinal injuries. That way the whole country does not bear the burden of medical care for gunshot injuries and the time spent by the police finding the criminals who use guns. This amounts to billions of dollars every year. Gun people bear only a tiny part of this cost. Gun people do not bear much of the burden for the human suffering caused by gunshots. So let gun people pay the costs for police and medical and fire and all the other city and state services rendered to cope with gunshots and gunshot injuries.

Our city and county and state representatives cannot pass any new laws that regulate the sale of guns. So let them pass laws that tax ammunition heavily. A tax of 500% seems a reasonable place to start. Put in place harsh penalties for evasion of the tax by non-reporting or going out of state to buy ammunition. By this, the tax on the Tuscon shooter's ammunition would bring the price to about twenty eight dollars.

There's some sickness in the body politic that we have not yet vigorously demanded laws to somehow regulate guns. We can regulate the ammunition by taxation. We can legally do this. We can stop them just like we stopped cigarettes. It will take enormous resolve because the PR spin by the gun people is oppressively loud and lavishly financed. Get some change in the air.

The gun people certainly will scream at the heavy tax on ammunition. But the gun people have always clearly known the price of everything, and the value of nothing.

A dead tenderhearted girl. Seventeen cents for the bullet.

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