Last spring, Derrick Bird killed twelve people in Cumbria with guns. In spite of the fact that the weapons were entirely legally owned, the instant reaction of the American gun enthusiasts I had 'debated' with the previous year was to triumphantly insist that this constituted proof that a UK-style gun ban is counter-productive. "I wonder what James Kelly will have to say about this," Kevin Baker crowed, before working through his standard repertoire of "Do it again, only HARDER!!!" (ie. if gun control 'isn't working', do it some more), and "when there are seconds to spare, the police are only minutes away" (ie. the deaths somehow wouldn't have occurred if only the British public were legally entitled to carry guns for 'self-defence').
Today, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shot in the head at a public meeting in Arizona and is now in a critical condition, while five others were killed. Kevin Baker lives in Arizona. The state not only has extremely permissive gun ownership laws, but also allows citizens to carry guns for self-defence.
Naturally, given that this is almost an exact reversal of the Bird scenario, one of my first thoughts was to wonder what Baker would have to say about the incident. Strikingly, this time he doesn't seem to have much to offer beyond a simple summary of the facts, with a number of his commenters briefly noting that it is "sad" and "unfortunate".