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Tulsa Shooter Targeted his Surgeon Over Excessive Pain

I'm normally not inclined to write about mass shootings, unless there's a twist I'm interested in.

Tulsa interests me. The shooter had a back operation as a result of which he allegedly suffered pain, which despite numerous calls to his surgeon's office, was not adequately addressed.

I don't know if indadequately addressed pain was the direct cause of the shootings. But I am aware that the amount of opiate pain meds a doctor can administer is now determined by the DEA, and other federal and state agencies, not a person's physician.

Pharmaceutically-made pain pills are now too hard to get. This leads people buy black market pills on the street, and unbeknownst to them, even though they ask for "oxys" or "blues" and the pills they receive are stamped with the manufacturer's name and the dosage, the pills are not pharmacutically made but made in some clandestine labatory in by Mexico by the cartels, who use some fentanyl powder they get from China. The lab workers throw in some acetominaphen (mostly in Western states) or mix some heroin or other drug with the fentanyl powder (mostly in Eastern states according to the DEA) and then use a pill press to turn it into pills and ship them to the U.S. where unsuspecting consumers have died after ingesting the synthetically made non-pharmaceutical substance.

[More...]

My view: Give the people back their pain meds. Let doctors, not cops and government bureaucrats decide what each patient needs. It is beyond insane that people with excruciating pain (possibly like the shooter in Tulsa) cannot get adequate relief, and turn instead to murder or suicide.

As for those who want oxys to get high, or block out unpleasant emotions, or for fun, let them. Let them and their families know about available treatment facilities for their dependency, and let them choose when and if to check in. It's really not the Government's place to interfere or restrict what someone chooses to put in his or her body.

Guns don't make decisions to kill people. People who possess guns make that decision, whether out of rage, depression, revenge, pain or feeling ignored and inadequate in some way, or because they are mentally ill.

To be clear, I don't whether Mr. Michael Louis of Muskogee, OK was offered sufficient pain meds or not. But I do believe that restricting pain meds leads people in excruciating pain to do extreme things. And restricting guns for the purpose of reducing the number of shootings is as effective as putting a band-aid on a flat tire. It doesn't fix the underlying problem. If uncontrolled pain was the cause of today's shootings in Tulsa, had Mr. Louis' surgeon worked to address it, either by additional surgery or prescribing additional, effective pain medicine, four more people would be alive today.

Even if that wasn't Mr. Louis' motive, I can easily foresee a future shooting where the doctor or pharmacy tells the patient in excruciating pain, "We don't write (or fill) for addicts." That is so last century. Training doctors to tell these patients to try alternative techniques like yoga and meditation to relieve acute and chronic pain is not going to cut it. Nor should hospices, where patients are treated for pain but otherwise left to die from their medical conditions be the only choice.

Desperate people do desperate things. I think that if we try harder to notice those struggling around us and then eliminate or treat the desperation, there will be fewer incidents of gun violence.

Restricting gun ownership will just increase the black market in weapons, particularly with respect to assault rifles. Right now loads of AR-15's are shipped to Mexico and Latin America. There's not a huge market for them here. We are a country of 332 million people. According to the F.B.I., there were 40 active shooter incidents in 2020. (There is no standard definition of a mass shooting incident). Even if that number has tripled in 2022, to say 120 active shooters, that's a tiny, tiny portion of the population who are mass murderers. (I'm referring to the number of shooters, not the number of victims who kill multiple persons who are congregated in a single location, like an office building, mall, school, place of worship, etc --not parties where a fight breaks out and one attendee kills another).

As soon as we outlaw and increase restrictions on guns in this country, particularly automatic weapons, the more people will want one and resort to an illegal means to obtain it. With increased demand, there will be more, not less of them available here. That's not a solution, it's an exacerbation of the problem.

The Second Amendment exists for a reason. Historically, it was to protect against a tyrannical government. Since the Third Amendment is obsolete, the Second Amendment is now one away from the Fourth. We should not give up any of our constitutional rights, because once we give the government more power, it rarely gives it back.

More than one million people in America have died from COVID-19 so far. Rarely does the media provide us with details of these lost lives, and the grief their families suffer, as it does for the lives lost in mass shootings. Dying from an uncontrollable, unpredictable constantly mutating virus in the 21st Century should not be happening on such massive levels. But it is happening and deaths still occur every day from COVID. Even if you accept gun control organizations' expanded figures of the number of deaths from a firearm each year (mass shooting, domestic violence, accident, suicide or other) the number of victims pale by comparison to those who have died from COVID.

I don't disagree that there is a reason that the U.S. has more mass shootings than any other country. I won't speculate on the reason, because I don't have a clue. But whatever that reason may be, I highly doubt restricting the sale or possession of firearms will make a difference. We need to look deeper, and not settle for Congress putting a band-aid on our flat tire. The tire will just become flat again.

< Biden Addresses Nation on Gun Control | Thursday Night Open Thread >
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  • Display: Sort:
    The Second Amendment is as obsolete (5.00 / 6) (#2)
    by Peter G on Thu Jun 02, 2022 at 10:02:27 PM EST
    as the Third. There is not now, and never will be again, an institution in America akin to the "militia" that the Framers envisioned -- an armed and organized body, existing outside of any arm of any government, of all "the people" who were entitled (by law at that time) to exercise political power, and available to prevent the rise of a tyrannical, unelected government. The right of that body and its members in each locality to "keep and bear arms" (a military term) was protected  by the Second Amendment from federal infringement. That's obsolete. The Supreme Court's contrary interpretation in Heller is just wrong. And you can tell 'em I said so.
      But that is not to say (like it or not, which I don't) that Americans have no right to possess firearms, at home for their own protection (if they believe them to be protective) and for hunting. They do have that traditional "privilege" (as expressed in the Privileges and Immunities Clause) -- or under the Second Amendment, as misinterpreted by Scalia in Heller -- subject to extensive authority to limit and regulate that right in the public interest (this has an equally solid historical foundation). And that right was particularly recognized and extended to the formerly enslaved (and their supporters) by the Fourteenth Amendment in 1868, because the Reconstruction Congress knew that the Klan and their friends in local "law enforcement" were a danger to Black lives in the former Confederacy. Again, perhaps an uncomfortable truth, but that's the truth, as I understand it.

    "mass-shooting" (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by leap2 on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 10:36:22 AM EST
    (There is no standard definition of a mass shooting incident).

    There is a general measure of what a mass-shooting is (via WaPo)

    Mass shootings, where four or more people -- not including the shooter -- are injured or killed, have averaged more than one per day so far this year. Not a single week in 2022 has passed without at least four mass shootings.


    That is WAPO's definition (none / 0) (#14)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 06:57:11 PM EST
    and it is not "the standard" because there is no "standard." See this Rand Org. article with comparisons for one source. The FBI report I linked to above says the same thing.

    Parent
    The Second Amendment does not ... (5.00 / 4) (#11)
    by Yman on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 12:28:38 PM EST
    ... give everyone the right to the weapons of there choice.  The fact that some people will choose to break a (hypothetical) law is not a reason to fail to enact that law.  If they choose to own illegal weapons, make the penalty severe and prosecute them.

    Follow your logic.  The 2A was written when a gun could be fired once or twice a minute.  If the 2A is an individual right for the purpose of defending against a tyrannical government, and it's interpreted to allow modern weapons that are much more lethal, why not fully automatic weapons that the government has?    Why not heavy machine guns?  The 2A says "arms", not just guns, so why not RPGs?  Anti-tank weapons?  Armored personnel carriers?  Fighter jets?  Nuclear missiles?  It's insane.

    There's a reason AR15s have become the gun of choice among mass killers - they are more lethal.  Tissue and organs aren't bruised or torn - they're obliterated.  They can fire many, high velocity rounds very quickly.  When paired with high capacity magazines, they can continue to be fired with barely a pause to reload.  They need to be banned ... now.

    Right (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by jondee on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 01:07:50 PM EST
    why ever have any laws or regulations at all, when bad actors will always try to find a way around them?

    When did this joint turn into the Cato Institute?

    And yeah, unless the NRA somehow rewrote the dictionary at some point, the term "arms" can encompass anything from spears to nukes.

    Parent

    While I don't completely agree (none / 0) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 02, 2022 at 08:41:08 PM EST
    with about the guns I think there is something wrong with this country.  Couldn't begin to say how to fix it or even what precisely it is but there is a rot in the spiritual (not religious) core of this country.  And I think it has a lot to do with the shooting.

    I think it also has much to do with the massive US death toll from COVID.

    There is something wrong with us.  And yes, it's us if we like it or not.  It's not violent entertainment.  It's not loose morals and it's not opioids.  Altho I think that problem is also related.  

    I'm hardly pining the good ole days of the early century but I do think the loss of any common moral floor and the loss of any agreed upon truth about anything sometimes does make them seem like better days.

    Oddly I think the republican party sees this as an opportunity.  Chaos serves their purpose.  The more death, the more misery and hate and contempt and distrust of everything there is, the more they can argue all government regulation - except the theocratic kind - is useless and pointless.

    Vote for us.  And we will set you free.

    I (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by FlJoe on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 05:00:30 AM EST
    don't think it's odd that Republicans see this as an opportunity, it's straight out of the authoritarian playbook.

    IMO, nowhere is the rot in this country deeper than among a good chunk of organized religion.

    Parent

    Yes (none / 0) (#6)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 09:27:44 AM EST
    Add to that list of "things it's not", it's not p0rn.    Can't think of anything that makes your point better than the NEW THING....

    Gosar Joins Call to Ban Pornography
    June 3, 2022 at 7:28 am EDT By Taegan Goddard 222 Comments

    Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) said Ohio U.S. Senate candidate J.D. Vance (R) is right in wanting to ban pornography.

    Said Gosar: "Liberal courts have declared porn to fall under `free speech.' What a joke."

    He added: "This, combined with the horrible effects it's having on our young men and women, means that one who opposes any restrictions on porn is ignorant at best and malicious at worst... But leftists refuse to budge an inch for the sake of sexual immorality."

    You wonder if Gosar is dumb enough to be this  disconnected from his fans.  

    This is the new clown car.  Gosar is just the latest.

    Parent

    Considering how many Republicans (none / 0) (#7)
    by MO Blue on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 10:09:33 AM EST
    and their right wing acolytes have pled guilty or been convicted on child porn charges lately, maybe he should drop the leftist meme and consider that he is trying to ban his supporters from activities they want to pursue.

    Parent
    Naked bodies bad. (none / 0) (#12)
    by Chuck0 on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 01:03:35 PM EST
    Bullets that rip bodies apart, good.

    It's 1984.


    Parent

    IMO (none / 0) (#16)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 07:25:14 PM EST
    A little visual stimulation and distraction is exactly what these murderous incels need.  

    The govt should provide it to them free.

    Parent

    We have become a country (none / 0) (#4)
    by MO Blue on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 07:16:24 AM EST
    of greed and grievances.

    Parent
    Richest (none / 0) (#5)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 08:23:36 AM EST
    Most powerful.  Most whiney and grievous.

    Parent
    Don't forget stupid (none / 0) (#10)
    by jondee on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 11:53:42 AM EST
    and neurotic and addled and crippled by screwy, crack-brained Biblical fundamentalism.

    A few Native American prophets said, in effect, "you people won't last" and I'm afraid they were right.

    Parent

    The adamant Second Amendment (none / 0) (#9)
    by jondee on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 11:40:53 AM EST
    fundamentalism of some people would flip faster than Jim and Sarah Brady's did if close family members of theirs were taken down in a mass shooting.

    Not that I'd wish that terrible experience on anyone.

    Jeralyn, what sorts of 'gun control' measures do you support, if any?

    Ozark (none / 0) (#15)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 07:23:09 PM EST
    Done and done.  Perfect.  Wonderful and amazing.  I can't think of a better finale.  Ever.

    Sorry that was meant for the open (none / 0) (#17)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 07:27:57 PM EST
    I'm going to put it there too because MKS wanted to discuss this.  You can delete this one if you want.

    Parent
    Agreed (none / 0) (#18)
    by KeysDan on Fri Jun 03, 2022 at 08:40:46 PM EST
    a surprising and good ending.  A great season!

    Parent
    But I am aware that the amount of opiate pain meds a doctor can administer is now determined by the DEA, and other federal and state agencies, not a person's physician.

    Sorta.

    I destroyed my knee about 10 years ago and when I got back home from the surgery the pain was pretty intense. Like no sleep at all for almost two entire days intense.

    My MD then prescribed 2X the dosage of his original opioid script, and then told me to take 2X that doubled prescription.

    After almost 2 full days I finally was able to close my eyes and sleep.

    The side effects were almost complete inability to  pee or poop.

    Who does this for fun?

    I've wondered the same thing (none / 0) (#20)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Jun 04, 2022 at 07:11:32 AM EST
    I mentioned my recent kidney stone thing. 2 things about that.  The side effects you mention.  Yikes.

    And only took two (2) pills.  I passed the thing after a few hours and the pain stopped.  But I couldn't poop for two days.

    The other thing is about availability.  I can believe some Drs in some places are afraid or otherwise are unwilling to prescribe opioids.

    Here, not so much.  I have a severely addicted family member.  Addicted for years.  No one wants to take her phone calls because she is always a sloppy slurring mess.  She keeps getting them.  

    She always has some eyerolling reason.  But she gets them.

    Then there is my Dr. Young, smart, good Dr.  A while back when I was having back problems he gave me a large (huge) family size bottle of Hydros.  The good kind.  When I saw him about the stone he offered more and I said "I still have some".  He said , "that's ok I will give you some more".

    Now I have another huge bottle full to go with the half I already had.

    Some Drs in the same practice will not prescribe opioids.  My friend goes to one.  But I'm telling you that's is not the norm.

    Parent

    Also (none / 0) (#21)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Jun 04, 2022 at 07:25:41 AM EST
    there are other side effects.  During my back thing I was in terrible pain for about a week.  So much so I could only hobble to the bathroom with the aid of crutches.

    For that whole time I chewed a hydro every 4 hours. Around the clock.  

    I was smart enough to take additional meds to keep things moving down south but after a few day my face broke out like I was 15 years old.  Then my arms and body.

    Stayed that way for a week or so after I stopped taking them.


    Parent

    But that just adds to "Who does this for fun?"

    Parent
    This intersects with the Johnny Depp (none / 0) (#22)
    by ladybug on Sat Jun 04, 2022 at 09:16:35 AM EST
    case in interesting ways. Johnny was addicted to  prescribed meds that he used to calm his "inner demons" from childhood abuse, and Amber and her team tried to use that to bolster their abuse claims, but the evidence they presented looked better for Johnny than for her. This Tusla case underscores the fact that there are just so many variables that could go into mass shootings, and I agree that there are other issues that could get more attention, including the number of gun deaths every day in inner cities. But all the points Jeralyn raises are very interesting to think about and discuss.

    Thin gruel, imo (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by jondee on Sat Jun 04, 2022 at 02:40:12 PM EST
    if every opiate dependent person in the throes of excruciating withdrawl - which is at least as bad as any physical injury - started gunning down people, swathes of this country would look like the Antitem battlefield.

    A factor? Possibly. I think a lot of mass shooters represent a more perverse and violent mutation of the same antisocial egoism and entitlement of that motivates a lot of 2nd Amendment gundamentalists.

    Instead of simply not giving a sh*t about public safety and other people's physical and existential well-being, mass shooters take it up a notch and give overt, violent expression to their complete lack of empathy and solidarity with their fellow humans.

    Parent

    Antietam.. (none / 0) (#24)
    by jondee on Sat Jun 04, 2022 at 02:58:31 PM EST
    wow, I butchered that one.

    Parent
    "Borderline personality disorder." (none / 0) (#49)
    by oculus on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 07:25:43 PM EST
    Weak tea language.

    Parent
    Oops. "Anti-social personality (none / 0) (#50)
    by oculus on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 07:41:29 PM EST
    disorder."

    Parent
    As soon as we outlaw and increase restrictions on guns in this country, particularly automatic weapons, the more people will want one and resort to an illegal means to obtain it.

    Small typo, I think you meant to wrote "semi-automatic weapons."

    Automatic weapons/machine guns have been effectively outlawed since the mid 80's.

    But I agree, I don't think we are like, say, Australia. Semi-auto weapons are utterly ubiquitous in the US and have been very commonly owned by the civilian population for at least a century.

    imo, banning them would simply make otherwise generally law-abiding citizens into federal criminals, as I doubt many present owners would simply just give up the guns that they've legally owned and used, completely safely, for years or decades, just because someone wrote some words.

    You are correct (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by MO Blue on Mon Jun 06, 2022 at 06:39:38 PM EST
    we are not like Australia, New Zealand, England, Spain, Israel, Canada, or Japan, etc., etc. etc. The citizens of other countries were willing to do the hard work to honor lives above guns. Evidently, we will not.

    Even the mildest changes to our federal gun laws are being labeled as too restrictive by Senate Republicans. Once again, they are running out the clock. We as a country will have to accept that guns are more important than people...even the very young. No act is too bloody, no deaths are too many...guns rule supreme.

    Parent

    Yet (5.00 / 4) (#30)
    by FlJoe on Mon Jun 06, 2022 at 06:53:41 PM EST
    women will soon be asked to give up a right they have had for decades just because someone "writes some words" funny how that works.

    Parent
    that you write. Are you arguing with my opinion?

    Parent
    Arguing (none / 0) (#32)
    by FlJoe on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 04:56:20 AM EST
    with gun nuts is like wrestling with a pig.

    Parent
    An ignorant man tilts at windmills (none / 0) (#38)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 09:38:35 AM EST
    convincing himself that he's made a righteous difference in the world.

    Parent
    A (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by FlJoe on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 01:23:34 PM EST
    weak man fondles his death machine, convincing himself that he's worth a sht.

    Parent
    Fondles.. (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by jondee on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 01:54:25 PM EST
    like the way some guys are attracted to women's shoes and even more bizarre intimacy substitutes.

    John Lennon nailed it with Happiness Is A Warm Gun.

    Parent

    A weak man fondles his ignorant fantasies (none / 0) (#46)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 02:57:46 PM EST
    about others, convincing himself that he's worth a sht.

    Parent
    Ooh (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by FlJoe on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 04:21:57 PM EST
    must have touched a nerve, sorry for my lack of politeness, I'm unarmed.

    Parent
    Sadly (none / 0) (#27)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Jun 06, 2022 at 12:33:55 PM EST
    I agree.  

    Parent
    While any legislation on guns might (none / 0) (#33)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 07:42:57 AM EST
    be described as bipartisan, from all indications it will be a Republican law confirming that their policies are what is right for America.

    If anything is done at all, indications are that it will contain encouragement , not requirements, for states to enact "red flag laws", funding for more guns in schools and hardening of school premises and a token amount for mental health.

    Any 18 year old male will still be able to purchase all the fire power and protective gear necessary to massacre people, young and old alike, and intimidate resource officers and police from engaging him. Not surprisingly, they fear for their lives and don't want to expose themselves to that level of fire power.

    Parent

    The thing is (none / 0) (#35)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 07:55:56 AM EST
    they get away with this because even tho about 80-90% of voters favor, say, universal BG checks, the PRO gun people are often single issue voters.  

    The gun control voters are not.  Or not enough of them are.  Until they are nothing will change.

    Parent

    This whole bipartisan gun deal (none / 0) (#37)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 08:42:23 AM EST
    is a big loser for the Democratic Party and more importantly for the citizens of this country.

    Let's say they agree to ENCOURAGE Red Flag laws and fund more guns in schools and prison like school premises. The Republicans will campaign and fund raise on we took the steps necessary to keep your kids safe (big f..king lie) while protecting your right to buy all the AR 15 type weapons and ammunition you want. If nothing passes, it will be portrayed as the Dems failure to work in a bipartisan way to get something done.

    The Democratic voters will consider this a big FAIL either way. No fund raising opportunities, no additional voter enthusiasm, and possible votes lost.

    The Republicans, the NRA, gun manufacturers and gun sellers will be the big winners while more people are slaughtered each and every day.


    Parent

    It's way past time (5.00 / 2) (#41)
    by jmacWA on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 11:11:07 AM EST
    For Democrats to understand that when the Republicans or most of the mainstream media say bipartisan, they mean 100% Democratic capitulation to their ideas

    Parent
    Day care taking more positive action (none / 0) (#34)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 07:54:19 AM EST
    to protect children than Congress and the gun lovers of America.

    At one St. Louis daycare center, shouting "Dora the Explorer!" is code for the kids to drop to the floor -- the safest place -- if gunfire breaks out nearby.


    Parent
    Wow. (none / 0) (#36)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 07:59:08 AM EST
    We will end up with public places, schools. Churches, even supermarkets becoming domestic green zones.  Armed camps.

    I don't know what else can happen if something major is not done.  And it won't be.

    Parent

    Well (none / 0) (#48)
    by FlJoe on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 05:14:10 PM EST
    once the fascists consolidate control there is a good chance they will change their mid about a heavily armed populace, after all the humpers are going to be pretty angry when they take away their p0rn and mandate that Coors lite is the only beer available.

    Parent
    How endlessly ironic (none / 0) (#39)
    by jondee on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 10:21:13 AM EST
    kids were taught to curl up under their desks in the fifties and early sixties in case the Rooskies dropped the Big One, and now, as Walt Kelly said, we have met the enemy of us and our children and it is us.

    Parent
    Also ironic, (none / 0) (#40)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 11:04:20 AM EST
    is how long and how often the right wing have pursued their horrible life threatening and undemocratic ideas. Now after decades they have become mainstream to the point that the standard wisdom has become that the majority has no other alternative but to surrender even the lives of their children to minority rule because nothing else can be done.

    Yes, the correct word is surrender.

    Parent

    Yeah, I'm looking (none / 0) (#42)
    by jondee on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 11:14:18 AM EST
    at Portugal myself.

    Parent
    I'm too old (none / 0) (#43)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 07, 2022 at 11:31:15 AM EST
    and definitely not rich enough. I doubt any country would accept me on a permanent basis.

    If I were my grandsons' age, I would most certainly explore other options before I started a family.


    Parent

    This is interesting (none / 0) (#28)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Jun 06, 2022 at 12:36:04 PM EST

    Fentanyl's New Flow
    The unexpected rise of the Chinese fentanyl industry in Mexico.

    As Chinese-made fentanyl -- a synthetic opioid 50 times stronger than heroin -- has flooded the U.S. market in recent years, Chinese nationals and Mexican cartels have worked ever closer.