Julianne Moore: ‘Weak gun-safety laws allow dangerous people’ to get guns

Variety's Power Of Women: New York 2016
Last fall, Julianne Moore announced that she was partnering with Everytown for Gun Safety, a gun safety nonprofit, to help advocate for stricter background checks for gun ownership, similar to car licensing. It’s a practical solution to a problem which just keeps growing, and it can be implemented with some changes to the laws across the country. Moore continues to be committed to this cause. She penned a new essay for the Lenny newsletter citing the statistics of gun violence, particularly mass shootings and domestic murders, which are more likely to occur in states in which there are loopholes on background checks for ownership. Moore explained that she was so upset by the Newtown shootings that she was inspired to take action. She also emphasized that women are far more likely to be victims.

Our weak gun-safety laws allow guns to end up in the hands of dangerous people. Roughly 40 percent of firearms in the United States are acquired without a background check, so criminals can obtain weapons they shouldn’t have. For example, there is a huge loophole in the federal background-check law that allows abusive boyfriends and stalkers to buy a gun. Studies show that when there’s a gun in a home where domestic violence has occurred, the chance that one partner will be killed increases by 20 times.

It doesn’t have to be this way. I believe that gun-safety laws can reduce gun violence, even if they don’t eradicate it, because of the example set by the automobile industry. A car is also a machine. In order to drive it, we require licenses and training. We have added safety features like seatbelts, airbags, collapsible steering columns, and safety glass. We have made car manufacturers beholden to these measures. We have enacted speed limits and criminalized drunk driving. In the process we have reduced the auto fatality rate by nearly 40 percent in just the past 20 years.

Congress is currently deadlocked on the issue of gun-safety rules. So much so that President Obama recently enacted an executive action to reduce gun violence. But where gun-safety laws have really made a difference has been at the state level. Currently, 18 states and the District of Columbia have closed the background-check loophole and require a background check on every gun sold.

In those 18 states, there are half the number of mass shootings, 46 percent fewer intimate-partner gun homicides, 48 percent fewer police gun homicides, and 48 percent fewer firearm suicides. That leaves 32 states that have NOT closed the loophole, and the next logical step is to go to work on changing that. In November, both Nevada and Maine have ballot initiatives where voters will be able to expand background checks and help save lives.

[From Lenny newsletter]

Those statistics are powerful and telling. States with stricter gun ownership laws have significantly less gun violence. Moore is advocating for the closure of the “private sale” loophole in the federal firearms law, which allows for citizens to sell guns without background checks online and at gun shows. Obama tried to close this loophole by issuing an executive order earlier this year stating that all gun sellers must require background checks for customers, regardless of where they sell guns. Obama also compared gun licensing to car licenses, which I think is apt. Whether his orders will have teeth or not remains to be seen, even as the numbers of mass shootings rise.

These are practical solutions which most people agree with. They preserve gun ownership rights while making our country safer, they just need to become law. Moore urged Lenny readers to become involved by joining Everytown.org. I like that Moore is involved with this issue and that she’s taken the time and effort to do it in a thoughtful way.

As a sad sidenote, New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton has spoken following the murder of former player Will Smith in a road rage incident. A man named Cardell Hayes rear-ended Smith and then shot him to death and wounded his wife. Payton explained “I’m not an extreme liberal. I find myself leaning to the right on some issues. But on this issue, I can’t wrap my brain around it.”

Moore is shown at the Variety Power of Women event in a black suit on 4-9. I love her but that big tie is a no. Photos credit: FameFlynet

Variety's Power Of Women: New York 2016

Julianne Moore Out And About In NYC

Julianne Moore at The  88th Annual Academy Awards in LA

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83 Responses to “Julianne Moore: ‘Weak gun-safety laws allow dangerous people’ to get guns”

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  1. Pinky says:

    It’s redhead day! Gina, Susan, Lindsay, Julianne.

    Anyway, I don’t think she’s wrong. But statistics mean nothing to people who don’t believe in math, science, reality, what have you


  2. Locke Lamora says:

    What checks do you need to go trough to get a gun in the US?

    Here you get checked, your family gets checked, your flat gets checked. I think they even interview your neighbours. The last school shooting we had was in the 70s or 80s, I’m not sure. But maybe it’s a cultural issue? Because there are people who have undocumented guns left over from the war, yet gun violence is extremely rare.

  3. GoodNamesAllTaken says:

    I feel so hostile towards people who are against gun control. I think it’s so selfish. My cousin, who is a condescending ahole, lectured me about the history of the constitutional right to bear arms, as if I didn’t know, and said that gun control set a dangerous precedent of chipping away at our rights. Of course, he’s “pro-life” as well. He doesn’t mind chipping away at my right to control my own uterus, but God forbid anybody think about making him wait 30 days to get a bloody gun. Luckily, he compared it to our right to free speech, so I got to point out that free speech is not without some limitations, and neither should gun ownership be, which shut him up temporarily. He hates me now, but I don’t care.

    • lilacflowers says:

      The Second Amendment is the only amendment in the Bill of Rights upon which the Supreme Court has not set limitations. And it is the only one with “well-regulated” in the text. By its own language, it allows for gun control.

      • tracking says:

        Agreed! And I believe the language is “well-regulated militias” to boot. Drives me nuts that no one seems to focus on the specifics of the language. And how does it chip away at gun rights to ensure that guns are responsibly purchased, stored, and operated? A completely spurious argument!

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Ooh, good one. Wait until next family reunion.

      • Snappyfish says:

        When the document was written there were no standing armies & each town & municipality had militias. Which were well regulated & in most cases the weapons were held in an armory.

        Much like cars are required to have license & be registered & have liability insurance why not guns? Make those who wish to carry guns INSURE them. So there is recourse for those they injure, maim or kill.

    • The Eternal Side-Eye says:

      Ah isn’t it funny how pro-life and gun rights go hand in hand? Just like those who are for the death penalty and want to ban abortion. Gotta make sure we’re killing the right people, eye roll, and the logic fallacies come rolling in.

      • Zip says:

        My favourites are the ones who go into “abortion clinics” and kill people for working there. That’s some logic I’ll never get behind.

      • vilebody says:

        C’mon, the logic is pretty clear. I don’t agree with the position (or violence), but most pro-lifers believe that life starts at conception, ergo abortion is the murder of an innocent. It’s not that they’re against the death penalty or death, it’s that they consider the death of a “murderer” justified punishment for the death of a fetus.

    • Dangles says:

      A right-wing nut with a gun hates you and you don’t care? I admire your courage.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Ha! I never thought of that. 😁

      • Mare says:

        The nuts and the criminals will get firearms illegally. You can pass all the gun control laws in the world. Criminals don’t follow the laws.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        But Mare, that is the lamest argument of all. That’s like saying you’re going to die anyway, why take medicine. No one is claiming it will be the permanent and complete solution. But if gun laws are strict, especially if the punishment for committing a crime with a gun is much harsher than without, it has been proven to prevent some deaths. Shouldn’t we at least try?

      • Lilacflowers says:

        @Mare, the majority of mass shootings were committed by people with no criminal record. However, several of them, including the Sandy Hook killer, had mental health issues that background checks would have found.

    • Kitten says:

      I’m with you, GNAT. “Selfish” is the right word for sure.

    • BabyJane says:

      I get what you’re saying, and the hypocrisy is frustrating to you I am sure. Just remember that a large part of the intent of the 2nd Amendment was to prevent a government monopoly on firearms. Certainly, in practice, the amendment has allowed for some pretty heinous interpretations, with actual, devastating consequences. To permit your own government to restrict your right to something they have unlimited access to is, in my opinion, dangerous- whether it be guns, information, media, anything.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Yes, cousin, I know that. Lol I’m not saying to take them away, just to be more careful not to sell them to maniacs.

      • BabyJane says:

        Haha I see what you did there.
        Yeah, that’s the thing with liberties- everyone gets them until they do something to necessitate an abridgement. Which sucks for their victims. I don’t know what the answer is, but I am pro-liberty more than I am anti-maniac.

    • annaloo. says:

      I think of the 2nd amendment and guns the same way I do abortion: you may hate them, condemn them and never ever have one in your life—BUT a day may come when you or someone you know will need one , so keep this right safe and keep it legal.

      No doubt the NRA and much of the gun lobby has a lot to answer for in that they offer no solutions for the increase of mass shootings that are happening, but I also think there are other things that are too controversial to bring up (violence in movies, video games, internet detachment, 4chan, 8chan, aspirational lifestyles people don’t reach, cynicism, lack of self esteem, so much, etc ) that is leading to the social isolation that many of these psychopathic killers hatch their schemes. If we are serious about curbing gun violence, I have to agree, making more laws is not going to solve anything. The people who follow the laws are always going to, and the people that do not follow laws will not suddenly grow a conscience. We need to take a hard look in the mirror at ALL things, from both sides of the aisle, from all walks of life to see what is creating and culminating in this extremely tragic and very scary time for safety in society.

      • annaloo. says:

        Also, just to follow up, bc this post has me thinking…

        There used to be a time when we could have guns in this society – as hunters, or marksmen, for sport or defense if needed — at some point, guns became , symbols of power and respect from fear, and now ways to exact revenge. At what point did they go here? I am not Tipper Gore, but SHOULD we start scrutinizing people like Tarantino or videogame makers? Was Heathers or the Basketball Diaries terrible films that glamorized psychopaths who murdered as badasses? A lot of these shooters in the news came from good, solid, middle to upper middle class families. They had privilege. They had what most people would think were “good upbringings”. And on the flip side of gun violence: street violence in inner city neighborhoods have always been problems due to turf wars. The psychology of having a gun in East New York or Brownsville NY is not the same as Pahrump or Ely NV.

        More laws are not going to make us safer; shifts in psychology might be more effective…I am not an advocate of censorship, but for all the talk of healthy this, and living aspirationally, etc we read in Hollywood gossip blogs, do we ever really think about what might be toxic psychology that comes from this industry to young men? We are quick to come down and criticize Hollywood for issues from racism to sexism to body shaming…but when it comes violence and the TRUE valuing of human lives – whether someone is here on this earth today and then gone in a moment by a bullet – what are we teaching culturally and what has shifted over time about the message of guns? Shouldn’t that – honestly- also be questioned?

      • amunet ma'at says:

        I agree with both points in your assessment. The thing is that the government would love for citizens to not be armed. The militarization of the police is scary and real, the new laws being enacted under the guise of anti-terrorism is also scary. Sane people who use guns for protection or hunting actually follow the laws, they are the ones who go through the hoops to get their firearms. More gun laws will simply lead to more criminalization of certain segments of the community and it will only hurt those who are using guns correctly. The crazy madmen will be crazy whether they get their hands on a gun, or make their own device, or hold a knife. Insane people who want to harm others are the ones getting guns by illegal measures. The laws do not matter to these people.

      • Lucrezia says:

        The problem with blaming Hollywood is that every English-speaking country is exposed to exactly the same Hollywood movies and yet the gun-death rates are drastically lower than those in the US. We (Australia, Britain, Canada etc) also have 4chan, video games and socially isolated teens.

        So why is the gun-homicide rate in the US over 5 deaths per 100,000 people and only about 1.5 deaths per 100,000 people in Australia, Britain, Canada etc?

        While I agree that targeting the cultural/psychological factors you mention might lower the rate, you’ve obviously got something else going on, something that is US-specific, that is causing gun-homicide to triple. That should be focused on first, because it’s the biggest factor.

        Possibilities are:
        – Gun-control (this subject has been done to death, so not going to bother to say anything except I’m an Aussie, I’m pro gun-control … nearly all Aussies are because it seemed to work here.)

        - The way the media treats true crimes. US reporting of tragedies often seems sensationalist to me, since I’m used to the Aussie media. It’s a side-effect of your 24/7 news: the media digs into every single angle they can, interviewing people who went to primary school with the killer etc, just to fill space. Unfortunately, the extended focus on the details of a killer/crime makes a copy-cat effect more likely. This is why responsible media tend to report suicides without revealing the method … more detail means more copy-cats.

        - Viewing guns as a right. Makes the conversation about guns different than the conversation in any other country, where guns are just like any other dangerous too.

        - Viewing guns as THE tool for defense. I remember someone here on CB said they were pro gun-control but they personally needed a gun to defend themselves from snakes on their farm. My response was “Wtf? A gun?!? Seriously? Why don’t you just use a shovel?” It would NEVER have occurred to me to use a gun to defend against a snake. And I wasn’t the only Aussie who replied that way. I wouldn’t have batted an eye if they’d said they needed a gun to hunt, or to put down injured farm animals, but that’s completely different than thinking a gun is the obvious choice for defense against a snake. Since then, I’ve been paying attention to how Americans tend to talk about guns, compared to how Aussies talk, and the “defense” argument comes up A LOT in the US. Here in Oz, you don’t hear that the same. Guns are for hunting or sports shooting. You hardly ever hear someone try to argue that guns are for protection. It’s not even a valid reason to own a gun here. You can get a firearm-license for hunting, but not for self-defense. It’s a different mindset. I don’t know what it’s like in Canada or Britain, but I have to wonder if thinking of guns as a defensive tool, rather than an offensive tool, makes shootings more likely.

  4. Catwoman says:

    I share a hometown with Will Smith. He was widely known as a kind, caring, giving person who adored his wife and kids and never forgot Utica, NY. Senseless tragedy.

  5. Brunswickstoval says:

    I live in Australia. We had a mass shooting 20 years ago which shook the country to its core and led to massive gun control. The government didn’t care that some people didn’t like it. But we don’t have a strong gun culture anyway and what existed has diminished over the years. I’m grateful for that.

  6. The Eternal Side-Eye says:

    I’m glad you mention Will Smith because people often use that excuse as a reason why they need their guns. “Sure the crazies shouldn’t have their gun but I’M responsible, I NEED it”

    Yup, you’re responsible and of course will never use it for anything but self-defense.

    Until your abusive husband uses it on you.

    Or your wife threatens to divorce you.

    Or you walk in on your spouse cheating.

    Or in a moment of panic and fear a weapon is right there to help you do something you’ll regret forever.

    How many stories do we hear about how someone didn’t mean to shoot someone else, they were just scared or angry or it was a crime of passion? Men and women die everyday because an unstable human being was deemed a-okay to have a killing weapon on them and acted on it before their adrenaline could calm down.

    Let’s not even get into the mental health loophole (hey Uber Driver and Planned Parenthood shooter) or the number of children who die as a result of shooting themselves, another child, or even their parents with an unsecured weapon from a parent who was either permanently afraid for their life (of course I need to bring my gun into Walmart) or simply too lazy to put it away (I didn’t realize it had bullets inside).

    Then there’s the irony of how the most passionate gun’s rights activist usually want to outlaw marriages for icky gay people, ban abortion and remove access to birth control and it’s all a big joke. They figured out the way to keep their party members passionate was to give them a boogeyman to be scared of in the thought of the scary Muslim taking away THEIR good ol patriotic rights, gun sales are through the roof and simple minds are too busy being scared to realize how easily they’re being played.

    • lilacflowers says:

      Yes, “gun control infringes on the rights of law-abiding people while the criminals will always have guns!” Except most mass killings were committed by people who were law-abiding until they weren’t. And the mental health argument infuriates me because those who voice it tend to have abysmal records on mental health funding and parity laws.

      • Nameless says:

        I think the failure of strict gun control in Chicago, which has horrible gun violence, gives credence to the argument that it’s not likely to work. We simply are not Europe and employing those policies will not work. Look at the War on Drugs. The result is a thriving black market drug trade and mass incarceration that has penalized black people unfairly. We have over 350,000,000 firearms in the United States. I am definitely for gun control but have yet to read of a definitive plan on how to 1) deal with of all of the existing guns 2) legislate gun control in a way that would be both effective and not add substantially more people to our prison complex.

        I want guns gone too, but it’s mostly been arm waving about gun control for the past thirty years, “look at Europe!” (I am looking at Europe and they have more crime), and no explanations for the failures of some of the existing laws. Where are the solutions?

      • vilebody says:

        +1. I don’t think most people realize that the situation is a lot more complicated than “let’s ban guns!”

        That said, one solution that I think has a lot of promise is a type of technology that only allows a gun to be fired by the owner using some kind of fingerprint technology. It won’t help with guns on the street and inner cities, though, so it unfortunately won’t have a speedy or particularly large effect on the people who need it most.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Ugh, you two are the problem. No one is saying its a complete solution. It’s a start. No one is saying its simple but you and your cohorts at the NRA. It’s very complicated. You have to start somewhere and being careful about who has legal access to a gun, then going after those with illegal guns, is the only way to start. But you are always just citing inaccurate statistics and Chicago and criminals have guns so I’m getting a gun and it doesn’t work. What good does that do? What’s your solution?

      • The Eternal Side-Eye says:


        Most of the guns distributed in Chicago are guns that were stolen from ‘legal’ gun owners. There was a recent robbery in a gun store in Texas where a coordinated attack of masked men were able to efficiently steal 65 guns. Where do you think those ‘legal’ guns will end up?

        The War on Drugs was a poorly implemented plan but the effects of drugs are also quite evident to see. Rampant and violent cartels that are destroying Mexico, human trafficking and funds being used to support terrorism, drugs that are now cut (from the source) with dangerous secondary drugs that disfigure and maim those who take them. People will always have their vices, that doesn’t mean we simply shrug our shoulders and stop attempting to have any laws. No community has been hurt more than the proliferation of guns than poor and minority neighborhoods. Shrugging our shoulders is doing nothing than piling up more bodies and making places like Chicago into warzones affectionally nicknamed ‘Chiraq’. Solutions exist where you look from them and problems are solved when you keep fighting to improve things. Last I checked Australia fixed this issue for themselves decades ago and marvel at the American ineptitude of ‘But what can we do?’

      • Nameless says:

        @GNAT, throwing me in the with NRA simply because I have legitimate concerns about the effects of implementing gun control? That’s unfair and simply wrong. I am on your side (and I did not cite any crime statistics, btw), I don’t have a gun and don’t want one, and recognize how detrimental they are to society. I am fully in support of less guns or NO guns.

        Yes, you have to start somewhere but where do you finish? How do you go after illegal gun owners without penalizing the poor unfairly? Licensing and training is great but if you’re poor and live in a high crime neighborhood and feel unsafe and want a gun, will you be able to afford all of the fees and training that Julianne Moore is advocating? Can you think about this objectively for a moment? Now you have stiffer penalties for owning an unlicensed firearm and who is going to be penalized for that? Is it going to stop the scourge of illegal guns? It will end up with more black men in prison (for the same crimes as white people) because they’re the ones that are profiled and subject to car stops, searches, etc. And we these policies don’t stop gun violence in high crime areas.

        Can you address my concerns without knee jerk labeling me as NRA cohort? People here are concerned about institutional racism and inequality apparently until there is a conflicting social issue! Let’s learn from the past and figure out how to implement policy that doesn’t create problems in the future. I wish I had a solution to guns, but I’m not a policy analyst.

      • here's Wilson says:

        In the case of gun violence mass shootings only make up a small amount of crimes. A study I read by the BBC gave less than 5% of all shooting deaths in the US to be a result of a mass casualty incident.

        Not undermining the need to look into controls for these situations but far more people are dying from gun violence not related to mass shootings. I feel pretty confident that the drug related gun crime found most prodimently in inner cities – mine included – surpasses these mass shooting numbers significantly. Chicago had over 2000 last year. Thats just one city. Its INSANE. ‘

        Part of my job is dealing with violent crime. There are days when I sit down at work and know that we will have a shooting. And then a shooting the next day in retaliation for the one before that. And so on and so on. There are so many programs that have been put in place to curb the violence. Gun buy back and and peers of ex cons talking to these dealers trying to make a difference. Police outreach and youth programs. I hope that some of them will have an impact with these youth because gun laws sure as hell won’t.

      • Lucrezia says:

        @ nameless: RE: “if you’re poor and live in a high crime neighborhood and feel unsafe and want a gun, will you be able to afford all of the fees and training that Julianne Moore is advocating?”

        And THAT right there is one reason why the gun-homicide rate in the US is so high compared to most other countries. You seem to think that it’s self-evident that feeling unsafe means you should want (and be able to get) a gun. But it’s not.

        Your hypothetical person is twice as likely to kill someone accidentally than to kill someone in justifiable self-defense. (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/06/19/guns-in-america-for-every-criminal-killed-in-self-defense-34-innocent-people-die/) If you’re going to use a gun for self-defense, it really has to be loaded and easily accessible when you need it. Which means you’re storing it dangerously (probably illegally) and that makes accidents a lot more likely. If you’re storing your gun safely – keeping it locked up, with the ammo separate – you’re not going to be able to use get to it if/when you really need it. There is no way around it, it’s a catch-22. You can have a “safe” gun or you can have a gun that’s actually useful in a self-defense scenario, but you can’t have it both ways.

        Many other countries (Australia, Britain, Germany, China, Japan and New Zealand to name a few) deal with that by making it illegal to own a gun for the sole purpose of self-defense.

    • Erinn says:

      And I’m just over here like ‘I like to target shoot sometimes… and we have coyotes and stuff – which are welcome until they try to touch my dog’.

      Unfortunately, it’s the people who do everything right that you don’t hear about. You don’t hear news reports about Joe down the street locking up his ammunition and firearms separately. You don’t hear about Tina who likes to compete in speed shooting. You know what I mean?

      It’s not like the vast vast majority of gun owners are the ones screwing up – but it’s the ones that ARE that make gun laws so so so important.

      I personally don’t look at a firearm as a means of self-defense in a ‘home protection’ sense. Would I shoot an animal if it was causing an immediate, clear threat to my safety, or the safety of my dog? Yeah. I would. But I’d then go throw up and cry, likely. I just don’t comprehend the line of thought that such a large number of gun owners have. I was taught since I was a kid – don’t ever point a firearm at anything that you don’t want to risk destroying – because it only takes a second.

      And there’s NO reason to have anything loaded until right in the moment when you need it.

      I had to sit through two courses – my non-restricted and restricted. Despite being the most horrifyingly boring time of my life thus far – they literally repeated over and over and over the dangers, and the laws. I then had my testing, had to have references, and background checks and all of that jazz before they would even finish processing my paperwork.

      It just baffles me that people seem to treat weapons as toys. And it baffles me even more the kind of thinking involved in the people who leave their firearms loaded, or lying around, or who fool around with them while drinking. These are the people that make crack downs necessary.

      • Goodie says:


      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        My brother has lots of guns. He target shoots, and he taught his children to. I have no problem with responsible gun owners who understand that guns are not toys and restrictions are necessary.

      • The Eternal Side-Eye says:

        Thank you.

        If all legal gun owners were as responsible as you we wouldn’t have this problem. But the stock piling of massive amounts of weapons, poor storage, and leaving them in access to the mentally ill or children are hurting us all.

        By making gun ownership into a right we’ve given guns to people who take children to shooting ranges to fire military grade weapons (and kill their instructors) or casually store them in their purse for their children to find and kill them with. I also wish studies could be done on what happens to these children mentally because the numbers are insane in terms of child deaths from guns.

      • Lurker says:

        “Unfortunately, it’s the people who do everything right that you don’t hear about. You don’t hear news reports about Joe down the street locking up his ammunition and firearms separately. You don’t hear about Tina who likes to compete in speed shooting. You know what I mean?”

        But why would we hear about people who everything right? Why is that relevant?
        I’ve yet to read about a person who didn’t have a car crash, because that’s not interesting, newsworthy, or relevant.

        What this article is about, specifically, is restricting access to guns, and running more checks. That does not affect Joe, or Tina, as long as they abide by the rules. The reality is, nobody is going to come and take away Joe or Tina’s guns in the middle of the night, despite what the NRA and their ilk claim, so I’m not sure why we should care about responsible gun owners, when it’s the nut jobs and mass shooters that are the problem.

  7. Jenni says:

    I don’t get it why Americans are so obsessed with guns. BTW She is absolutely right.

    • JenB says:

      Honestly I think the majority of Americans really are NOT obsessed with guns. But the power the gun lobby has in politics is disgusting. This is not the will of the majority.

  8. Sam says:

    Of course, she leaves out the more telling thing: gun violence is strongly, almost perfectly, linked to poverty. But since poverty would require people of her financial status to actually, you know, pay far more than they do now, it’s easier to talk about the guns.

    (And I’m not arguing that there is no place for a gun control debate. But I get so tired of seeing comfortable white women advocating this stuff when it’s an issue that runs far deeper and primarily effects communities of color, who can tell you pretty quickly that guns are a symptom, not a cause of violence)

    • The Eternal Side-Eye says:

      “But since poverty would require people of her financial status to actually, you know, pay far more than they do now, it’s easier to talk about the guns.”

      That doesn’t ring true. Whether she or others want to pay more the reality is there’s a whole political movement around pushing the idea of trickle down economy and favoring the wealthy. Being competitive in appealing to businesses by giving massive breaks. Kansas just went through two rounds with a politician who insisted all the problems with the economy would be fixed if he kept giving tax breaks to the wealthy and favoring their needs. The state is now in such bad shape that it’s become a topic of joking for late night comedians and political commentators.

      There’s plenty of reasons many politicians don’t want to see the middle class improve or put the proven methods of helping poverty to work that doesn’t need any input from any celebrity.

      • Sam says:

        Except the US Department of the Treasury accepts overages and donations. Any wealthy person who actually wishes to “pay their fair share” is 100% free to do so.

        And I think you missed my point entirely. I am not speaking to the government. I am speaking to private individuals like Moore who wish to talk about what they perceive a gun issue without addressing the sizable causes behind it – and yes, if she’s going to function as a spokesperson or advocate for a cause, I expect her to be well-versed in it beyond talking points. I’m sorry, but a wealthy white woman has little credibility on this with me. She acts as though the gun problem can be isolated, when in fact it is a symptom. But that’s the latent racism of the whole spiel. Gun violence happens every day – and it mostly impacts communities of color and is mostly committed with unregistered, illegal weapons (which, you’ll notice, Moore doesn’t really address). That’s because when it happens in the ghettos, slums and poor rural areas, it doesn’t impact her or give her reason to pause. It’s also failing because the vast majority of gun crime is directly linked to poverty and the things people will do to try to escape poverty. This isn’t simply me stating so; there is a huge body of research that shows, fairly conclusively, that the most effective way to reduce gun violence has nothing to do with gun laws – it has to do with removing people from poverty. So why don’t these gun campaigns address that? Frankly, and this is me speaking for me, because it would simply be too HARD for them, and it might require some comfortable white women to part with large sums of their money – and well, that’s just not tenable. But if these comfortable white women actually really cared about the issue, that’s what they’d do. And contrary to your assertion, they do not need the government to do that for them. The Treasury is very willing to take their money right now.

      • BabyJane says:

        And now those same people who voted for Brownback in Kansas may have to figure out what to do with their children if the state (or some of its districts) approve a 4-day school week. I’ll never understand this desire for government so small it only fits in your bedroom. Isn’t that largely why the Articles of Confederation failed?

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Yeah, those educated, privileged successful people should just stfu and stop trying to be part of the solution.

      • The Eternal Side-Eye says:


        That still doesn’t ring true.

        Julienne could wake up tommorrow and donate her entire income and that still wouldn’t fix the issue of politicians favoring the wealthy. In my own state and dozens more across America politicians choose to cut benefits and funding to the poorer parts of town and give it to the counties and wealthier areas. Even when they do give funding it’s often poorly managed, all the money in the world means nothing if there’s no intent to actually fairly distribute and fix the inequality contributing to the issue (just ask damn near any village in Africa). Saying that if Moore and others like her simply gave more doesn’t actually address the issue of societal structures and old laws. Just ask Mark Zuckerberg who gave $100 million dollars to create and fix a failing school system in ONE city, in ONE state and ended up with exactly nothing to show for it because of a corrupt system.

      • Sam says:

        ESE: Funny you bring up Zuckerberg. Because your version of those events is actually totally wrong. Zuckerberg gave the gift with massive conditions that the schools could not fulfill (for example, he wanted the money spent on technology suites at schools that did not have reliable infrastructure or, in one famous case, working electricity). But please, do more research on the Newark case, because it was not “a corrupt system” that largely doomed it – it was his own hubris and partially the teachers’ union’s demands that largely screwed the gift over. So let’s dispense with that example.

        And I am not arguing that Moore could fix the problem herself. However, giving a substantial portion of her income to the Treasury would be more effective (and remember, since it would technically be a gift, she could direct it to the government programs she sees fit). Or I’ll do you one better. She could go the private route. An anti-poverty program in Chicago, or Baltimore, or New Orleans, perhaps? Both of those options would actually do more, concretely, to diminish gun violence in any of those locales. You act as though we have a government that provides no aid to the poor. And while I agree it could be better, aid does exist, but it’s chronically underfunded. Which is why wealthy people of means should be stepping up more, voluntarily. Seriously, this isn’t that hard. The research on this is extremely well-known, and the conclusion is clear. If you actually care about gun violence and wish to reduce it, anti-poverty programs are the way forward – not lobbying for background checks.

        There is no excuse for wealthy people to claim to care about gun violence to not put their money up where it would be the most impactful. And giving money to anti-gun campaigns solves nothing. Giving to food banks, job training programs, colleges, etc. actually does more. And this is not a secret or little-known fact – it’s very well known. So unless she’s putting up serious money to support that stuff as part of her advocacy, it’s just more noise from a well-off but know-nothing lady.

        ETA: GNAT, that’s the problem. We know what the solution is. It’s been clear for some time. If you want to reduce gun violence, you need to reduce poverty. And background checks and gun laws, while admirable, don’t reduce poverty – so they are not contributing in a strong way to reductions. We’ve seen it time and time again – strong gun laws haven’t been enough to stem violence in many areas where poverty is rampant (Chicago, Baltimore, New Orleans, etc.). At this point, advocacy like this isn’t just fruitless, it detracts from actual solutions. But, truthfully, it’s easy to see what the actual issue is: the wealthy white people don’t care about the majority of gun violence that happens in inner cities. They care about the Newtown kind, where it intrudes upon safe, suburban spaces and threatens them. That’s what this is really about.

      • The Eternal Side-Eye says:


        I have done research on the Newark schools issue including from national news papers, local news papers and parents themselves. The school Union had a large part to deal with why the gift failed as well as the fact that, as it so often does, contracts were given to outside individuals to serve as consultants and idea guys while collecting a tidy income for merely saying yes or no. I’m not saying this to be argumentative, just now I even Googled the topic again to refresh myself and there’s plenty of news articles discussing the multiple issues that came to play. That being said that wasn’t my point. If we are already discussing one story in which a wealthy philanthropist gave money to fix just one school system and it failed how would Moore’s donation do anything to fix that? Donations are only as good as the intent to actually do anything positive with them that is all I’m saying. If the Wounded Warrior Project collects millions and the CEO pays himself millions and spends the money on frivolities like parachuting off a building how does more money fix the problem if the corrupt CEO isn’t removed?

        Baltimore has had so many ‘initiatives’ over the years to curb poverty that have done nothing because inept and ineffective politicians like Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake execute poorly planned, poorly researched, almost embarassing steps that don’t intelligently address the situation. She has had a run as Mayor that is so shameful she had to revoke her attempts to re-run for office due to public outcry. Then Governers like Larry Hogan decide that every surrounding county deserves funding and economic boost and that money should be cut for city schools (which means there was money that could have been given but he decided against it). Let’s also not forget previous Mayor Sheila Dixon who had to leave office because of stealing gift cards that were donated with the intention of giving them to poor and struggling lower income families. If I had a million dollars today I wouldn’t donate a cent of it to any government system unless I could personally moniter and control every step of it.

        Too much wasteful spending and excuses. I do agree passionately with you on one thing, it does start with poverty and it does need to be addressed from the ground up. But again…that also starts with politicians willing to work to help fix that problem and spend the money wisely not simply give outside contracts to companies that ultimately fail (as happened with the state-specific Maryland Health Connection that was so bad the state actually sought to get its money back from the company).

        If the NRA donates billions to lobbying groups to sway politicians and millions is spent to try and help
        poverty one side will constantly win out. That however, doesn’t mean both sides should be addressed.

  9. Belle Epoch says:

    Go Julianne!!! Usually I frown on celebrities talking about politics or vaccines, but she is my hero for taking on gun control. People are MENTAL over having a chance to play Rambo.

  10. JustJen says:

    I’m sure I’ll be the lone dissenting voice here. Limiting access to guns is like limiting access to drugs, or abortions. The determined ones will get it regardless. Thanks to the meth epidemic, I can no longer buy Sudafed at my pharmacy drive thru. That law was passed several years ago. Last I checked, meth was still around and heroin use has spiked. When abortions are hard or impossible to obtain, people will drive hundreds of miles and/or take horrible risks that often maim or even kill. Likewise, criminals will always be able to get guns. You know why? Because if you shut down their access at stores, they’ll go to gun shows. If you shut down their access there, they’ll buy one out of someone’s trunk. Probably modified so it’s even more deadly than any legally acquired firearm. Serial number removed, maybe a silencer added on. Or if they don’t have the money, they’ll steal one. My husband recently got his CCW and we are both NRA members. Violent people attack and kill with or without guns. We have a security system, but we also have guns. Our daughter knows how dangerous they are and will NOT go near it. When she has friends over, all guns go in the locked safe. There is nothing to fear from responsible gun ownership. Ok, flame away.

    • Lambda says:

      Here it is: everybody’s a responsible gun owner a second before they’re not. You have guns in the house? It’s more likely you’re going to use them against yourself or against your husband than you’ll ever use them against a house intruder. Why? Because statistics, and nobody’s above them. NRA thrives in your fear. Finally, did I get that right? you only lock your deadly toys when your kid has friends over? How responsible.

    • TheGrandSophy says:

      I would imagine that stricter gun regulation isn’t going to really cause problems for law-abiding citizens, but it will most likely impact acquisition by criminals. To what degree, who knows, but you need to start somewhere. There are guns and then there are guns. Why on earth does someone in surburbia need a pump action shotgun? And the argument that criminals will always be able to get guns (in other words, no point in regulation) is an error in logic. You may as well say that drug addicts will always be able to get drugs, so no point in regulating that either.

      As someone on the other side of the world, even we get heartsick hearing about Columbine, Lafayette etc. I thought for sure that something would be done after Sandy Hook, but no. I wish your country the best in overcoming this issue, but if Sandy Hook wouldn’t move the NRA lobby, I’m not sure what would.

      All it took was the rampage of one nut job in Tassie for our government to do something about it.

      Come on, America! Sort this out. I would think that the right to bear arms was enshrined in law for a different time, place, world. I think the writers of your Constitution would be horrified to see the results of something that was put in place to protect your freedoms, used as a tool against each other.

      • Magnoliarose says:

        Many of the pro gun people can’t or won’t understand why laws from another era need updating. Not a lot of people living off the land anymore or need the protection they think they do.

    • The Eternal Side-Eye says:

      Yes yes we know, it’ll never end so we shouldn’t even try.

      That’s why we’ve basically gotten rid of speed limits and court systems. People are going to break the law anyway so why bother prosecuting them.

      I think it’s possible to fix this issue but I do believe you touched on one valuable point. The determined will go to great lengths to get a gun. This doesn’t actually mean criminals in my mind. Most of the guns sold and given to criminals came from responsible gun owners. Texas just had a gun store broken into and I believe 65 weapons stolen. 65 ‘legal’ weapons now floating around for any criminal to use. Those who have become paranoid and neurotic about their gun ownership, who consider it a badge of honor and have the mantra of ‘from my cold dead hands’ playing in their heads will likely put up the biggest fuss and make implementing the law impossible.

      When they can no longer attain guns legally they’ll likely pursue them through illegal methods thereby supporting the same system they, ironically, are buying the guns in fear of. This isn’t speaking about people who are actually reasonable about this topic and willing to come to logical compromise.

    • meme says:

      I agree with everything you wrote. If someone wants a gun, they’ll get one.

      • vanessa says:

        It’s funny that the same people who use this argument will also argue that transgendered people are child predators that will prey on your kids in public restrooms. If a child predator wants to harm your child, a law allowing transgendered people to use the restroom of their choosing is not going to stop them. Why do we even have laws at all if criminals are going to break them? There are too many instances of children shooting themselves or their siblings. Why take that chance? “It’s not loaded!” Famous last words.

      • The Eternal Side-Eye says:



    • Lucrezia says:

      The determined ones will get a gun anyway.


      But how many gun-homicides are actually committed by determined people?

      Most gun-homicides are crimes of passion, or panic, or accidents or due to mental illness.

      Making guns harder to get stops THOSE. Isn’t that worth a bit of paperwork of behalf of responsible gun-owners?

  11. JenB says:

    Sensible gun safety regulation is something I am personally very passionate about. I don’t understand why this country refuses to use a common sense approach. I think there was a time when the NRA was a respectable organization where sportsmen and enthusiasts supported gun responsibility and safety. Those days are long over. We can’t even collect proper DATA about gun violence and death because of some legislation in the 90s. How dumb is that? I’m tired of the “well bad people will still get them” argument. (Should we not have laws against rape since “the bad people will rape anyway”?) I think it’s even hard to argue how successful any state or city laws are when nearby states may have very weak laws and there’s nothing to stop someone from driving into another state. I believe in an individual’s right to own a firearm. But we must use common sense. After 20 first graders were shot to death and we haven’t changed a single thing as a country…it really breaks my heart. We are better than this.
    *Also, we do need mental health reform. Absolutely we do. But I notice that most right wing extremists only holler about “it’s a mental health problem!” when someone brings up gun safety laws and then they pretty much forget about it after they’ve blocked whatever gun law they were opposing.

    • Lindsay says:

      Mental health care (since 60% of gun deaths are suicide) and income inequality and a hard to break poverty cycle are hard and expensive to fix. It’s way easier to keep the NRA happy and hide behind the second amendment as if it can’t be changed.

      Also, we need to disavow people of this notion that 16 hours in a classroom is enough to make up for the fact the intruder has pretty much every tactical advantage and the gun you keep for protection will statistically be the one you are shot with. The older you get, the higher the odds. It’s like buying a time bomb. Which is why in most countries with strict gun laws “self-protection” in urban and suburban areas isn’t a legitimate reason to own a gun.

      • Lilacflowers says:

        As far as intruders, my rule has always been: I know my house better than they do; if a locking door separates me from them, door gets locked; nearest phone (1 in every room); and I’m going out the nearest door/window to street, calling police, and running to neighbors. They’re not getting out past the police and neighbors.

  12. Lama Bean says:

    The Will Smith situation is sad. There’s more to it. Seems Will rear ended this guy first and took off.

    At the end of the day, though, this is STILL no reason to pump bullets into someone else.

  13. Nancy says:

    Hello Captain Obvious. This is the problem. Guns getting into the hands of the wrong people. Stricter rules will make it more difficult, but when some of these sickos want to start trouble, they will find a way to get guns. Sadly history has proven this to be true on anything, not just guns.

    • Linn says:

      But isn’t making it more difficult a huge step in the right direction? We try to improve in most other fields so why not when it comes to gun control.

  14. Jayna says:

    It amazes me that anyone would be against stricter gun safety regulation. It boggles my mind. And all you hear from the ignorants online are, they are trying to take our guns away.

  15. J-Who says:

    I would so appreciate you pro-gun control people to remember what the 2nd amendment was written FOR and WHY and why it is necessary for us to keep that right protected. Even though it has a little to do with protecting your family and property, it has everything to do with protecting oneself from their govt. All one has to do is look at countries that used to have gun rights and how they are NOW with no rights to guns and no way to protect themselves. Just because this is the USA doesn’t mean the same crap can’t happen here. Just sayin’….

    • Lambda says:

      You must not fool yourself. In case an oppressive govt takes power in the US (unlikely) and, crucially, the army chooses to stand by that govt (even more unlikely,) the armed citizenry will be able to do squat in open resistance. Again, if the army does not side with the people, you’re not going to have a revolution, but something probably called ‘enclaves of resistance’ or something similar.
      Also I wish I knew which countries you’re referring to.

    • The Eternal Side-Eye says:

      I too would love to see this list of countries now helpless before their government.

      The idea that a single untrained individual with a Cracker Jack box prize of a weapon is going to pose a threat against highly trained military grade style weapons and soldiers including all new technologies like drones is laughable.

      Governments need to be fought against to keep them from becoming oppressive but the physical fight is a fantasy from the past. A post-apocalyptic fairytale where the everyman is left triumphant.

    • Lucrezia says:

      I was curious, so I googled.

      List of countries who had, but then lost, the right to bear arms: Bolivia, Columbia, Costa Rica, Honduras, Liberia and Nicaragua.

      Hmm. Looks bad. However …

      List of countries who have EVER had a constitutional right to bear arms: the US, Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Liberia, Mexico, Haiti and Nicaragua.

      That’s still not what you’d really call a list of the most progressive and humane countries in the world.

      Obviously the winning move was not to have adopted it as a right in the first place like: every other country in the world.

  16. Magnoliarose says:

    I don’t know how anyone can defend our gun laws. It isn’t working. Most of what I would say has been said. I’m actually for an all out ban but I don’t think it will happen. The NRA is a lobby for gun manufacturers, masquerading as a liberties group, hiding behind the second amendment.
    Relaxed laws mean more sales.

    • Ash says:

      “I’m actually for an all out ban but I don’t think it will happen.”

      Same here. And that probably won’t happen.

  17. Tara says:

    I always love to see Julianne Moore. I don’t see how anyone in their right mind would be against keeping guns out of the hands of abusers, stalkers, and the mentally ill.

  18. MAC says:

    She is an actress. What?

  19. Dinah says:

    My keeper quote about Julianne: “She’s one of those people who is wonderful at convincing others of how intelligent she is, until the camera switches off and she opens her mouth.”