After mass shootings this summer, a fusillade of a different sort erupted when gun rights advocates suggested a good Samaritan with a concealed weapon might have saved the day, reports the Houston Chronicle. After James Holmes opened fire in a crowded Aurora, Co., theater, killing 12 and wounding 58, U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Tx.), wondered whether an armed movie patron “could have stopped this guy more quickly.”
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg called Gohmert’s view “nonsensical.” Still, citing research suggesting state concealed-carry laws help reduce crime, pro-gun advocates have a new mantra: Gun ownership is not only a constitutional right, it’s socially beneficial. “You cannot name a mass shooting in this country that has occurred in a place where guns were allowed,” said former Texas legislator Suzanna Hupp, noting the Colorado theater prohibited customers carrying guns. Hupp lost her parents in the 1991 Luby’s cafeteria massacre in Killeen, Texas, in which 23 died.