Biden calls for assault weapon ban after nightclub shooting

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

President Joe Biden has a history of leaping on any kind of mass shooting to call for gun control. It’s not like we don’t even have recent examples, either. More than one, even.

So, in the wake of the shooting at a Colorado Springs nightclub, no one should be surprised that Brandon is at it again.

President Joe Biden didn’t wait very long to utilize the horrific Colorado Springs shooting to push his gun control agenda. Biden – who admitted that there has yet to be a motive established in the Club Q shooting in Colorado – declared, “We need to enact an assault weapons ban.”

There were five people killed and another 18 injured in the tragic shooting at a gay nightclub in Colorado around midnight on Sunday. The suspect, 22-year-old Anderson Lee Aldrich, reportedly burst into Club Q and began shooting at people. Two brave patrons at the LGBTQ nightclub subdued the gunman before more people could be harmed.

Colorado Springs police chief Adrian Vasquez said Aldrich used a long rifle in the shooting, and two firearms were found at the scene, according to CNN.

The New York Times reported, “Early reports indicate that the suspect entered the nightclub wearing body armor and began firing with an AR-15 style assault rifle, according to two law enforcement officials briefed on the shooting.”

So, for once, it appears that Biden is calling for an assault weapon ban in a shooting that actually used an AR-15.

You know, just to shake things up.

However, we also know that mass shooters rarely just wake up one day and decide to carry out a mass shooting. There are generally signs that something isn’t right with the person, often some history of violence that law enforcement hasn’t really picked up on for whatever reason.

And, it seems that’s the case here as well.

It seems the alleged shooter (and I have to say “alleged” for legal reasons just now) had been arrested in June 2021 for a bomb threat that turned into a police standoff.

A year and a half before he was arrested in the Colorado Springs gay nightclub shooting that left five people dead, the suspect allegedly threatened his mother with a homemade bomb, forcing neighbors in surrounding homes to evacuate while the bomb squad and crisis negotiators talked him into surrendering.

Yet despite that scare, there’s no record prosecutors ever moved forward with felony kidnapping and menacing charges against him, or that police or relatives tried to trigger Colorado’s “red flag” law that would have allowed authorities to seize the weapons and ammo the man’s mother says he had with him.

Of course, proponents of such laws are arguing that the law could have been used to strip him of his firearms before this deadly attack. The problem is that, as noted, Colorado has that law.

Further, he was facing felony charges. Why weren’t they filed?

Now, I don’t know that he’d have been convicted of them, but if he had been, he’d likely be disarmed and in prison rather than shooting up a gay nightclub in Colorado Springs.

Biden is talking about an assault weapon ban, but that’s blaming the tool when it appears an entire system broke down for it to ever get to that point. Numerous existing gun control laws–measures meant to prevent things like this from happening–simply didn’t do what they were reportedly designed to do.

Someone facing felony charges can’t buy a gun, which we saw prior to the UVA shooting. A red flag law would have stripped him of the guns he allegedly already had. A conviction for that felony would have stripped him of gun ownership for life.

None of the mechanisms already in place did jack squat to prevent this shooting, so how am I supposed to believe that this simply wouldn’t have happened if we had an assault weapon ban? I’m pretty sure the alleged killer could have killed five people with a handgun just as easily.

We have to recognize that the one constant in every mass shooting isn’t the weapon used. It’s that a person is using it to take human lives. Remove the gun and that person will find another way to kill innocent people, only it might not be a way that the patrons can turn the tables on the would-be killer like they did in Colorado Springs.

Biden can call for gun control such as assault weapon bans, but he should also be called to answer for the failures of previous gun control measures that were supposed to prevent such an attack. We all know the answer, I just want to hear him say it.