Vegas Gunman's Plan Was 'Nightmare' for Cops

A roundup of editorials and columns in the wake of the massacre
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 2, 2017 1:50 PM CDT
After Vegas Massacre, a Fierce Debate on Guns
A woman cries while hiding inside the Sands Corporation plane hangar after a mass shooting in which dozens were killed at the Route 91 Harvest country festival on Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017, in Las Vegas.   (Al Powers/Invision/AP)

In the wake of the massacre in Las Vegas, an outpouring of prayers, condolences—and opinions. Here's what some editorial boards and columnists are arguing:

  • This was a "nightmare scenario," writes Phillip Carter at Slate, and he outlines three reasons why. One: "The geometry of Paddock’s attack"—that is, the "distance, elevation, and obscuration"—was one that the stepped-up security measures we now have at public events are no match for. "It would have taken Secret Service-type precautions, of the sort deployed to protect presidents since John F. Kennedy's assassination, to prevent an attack like this."
  • "This is a Nixon in China moment for Trump," writes the Philadelphia Inquirer Editorial Board, which argues Richard Nixon found conservative support when visiting Communist China because of his anti-Communist attitudes. "Trump's stature with the gun-rights activists who helped him win the presidency opens the door for him to argue for more gun control." Time will tell whether the man who once called for a ban on assault weapons will play the part of the "NRA's tool" or not.

  • "The remedy that seems so self-evidently moral to so many—take away guns—finds no societal consensus," writes Gil Smart for TCPalm. As such, he thinks the most prudent approach is to push for a remedy that "enjoys broad support." He nominates one: limiting the size of magazines; large-capacity ones were used in Sandy Hook, Aurora, Columbine, and Fort Hood among other massacres.
  • The Los Angeles Times Editorial Board has no interest in such middle ground. "The gun lobby argues that military-style weapons are necessary for hunting, and for sport shooting." In its view, "These are weapons of war, not of sport, and to argue otherwise is to either lie, or to not understand the difference." They must go, but we continually show we don't have the "political will" to make that happen.
  • At the New York Times, Nicholas Kristof isn't calling for a ban, but he is calling for action, and he sees the auto industry as a model worth emulating. He does the math behind the staggering drop in auto fatalities per 100 million miles driven since 1921, and observes that there "was no single solution" behind making that happen, "but rather many incremental efforts." He suggests eight such incremental efforts we could make on the gun front.
(More Las Vegas shooting stories.)

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