by German Lopez
132 days ago
State gets C in human trafficking, Kasich funds mental health, mall businesses evicted
An annual human trafficking report released by Attorney General Mike DeWine gave Ohio a C.
The grade, which comes from Shared Hope International, was a step up
from D's in the previous two years. But DeWine says it’s not enough, and
further action will be taken. Ohio has made some
strides on the human trafficking issue, including passage of a new “Safe Harbor” law for sex-trafficking victims, new details for minor
trafficking victims and the training of 24,000 law-enforcement officers to
better detect and help trafficking victims.
Gov. John Kasich is giving $5 million
to mental health services to help curb and prevent violence. The news
comes in the wake of school shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary
School on Dec. 14 and a California high school yesterday. Mental health
services are important, but so is gun control, as CityBeat pointed out here. Vice President Joe Biden is currently heading an investigation to make suggestions on gun control to President Barack Obama.
The remaining businesses in Tower Place Mall were told to get out.
Cassidy Turley, the court-appointed receiver of the mall, apparently
filed eviction notices telling businesses to leave by March. The mall
has been struggling for some time now, and the city of Cincinnati is
currently in the process of trying to buy it. City Manager Milton
Dohoney says the city had no part in the evictions.
The city of Mason is apparently becoming a technology corridor.
Since 2011, the city has brought in $110 million in investments and
created 1,400 jobs. The new jobs are related to technology, robotics,
automation, innovation and health care.
Warren and Butler counties are apparently seeing a surge in sales tax revenue. The budgetary boost is being seen by some as a sign of further economic expansion.
Surrounded by dogs, Gov. Kasich signed legislation effectively banning puppy mills.
Previously, animal advocates claimed lax rules and regulations had made
Ohio a breeding ground for abusive practices. The lack of oversight
also helped enable Ohio’s dog auctions, which CityBeat covered here. The new law will go into effect within 30 days.
An Ohio school is apparently arming janitors. Previously, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters made a suggestion to arm school staff, but research shows it doesn’t help deter or stop acts of violence.
Natural gas is being slightly deregulated in Ohio.
The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) is allowing two
companies — Columbia Gas of Ohio and Dominion East Ohio Gas — to
eliminate regulated pricing for businesses, with some conditions.
Supporters say the move will create more competition and lower prices,
but the deregulation gives a substantial advantage to two big energy
Congress is apparently less popular than head lice,
but it’s more popular than Lindsay Lohan. Damn. Does that mean people
prefer head lice to Lindsay Lohan? Even Nickelback and Ghengis Khan beat
Congress. Poor Lindsay.
Science has now found that animal grunts can act similarly to Morse code. Is this yet another warning of the impending animal takeover?
0 Comments · Wednesday, January 9, 2013
U.S. Rep. Tom Massie, the congressman who
represents the Kentucky side of the Cincinnati metropolitan area, used
his first day in Congress to file a bill that would erase a 23-year-old
federal ban that makes it a crime to carry guns near schools.
by Ben L. Kaufman
134 days ago
Media musings from Cincinnati and beyond
a story for local health/medicine reporters: why is Christ Hospital
reducing service at its outpatient cardiac rehab center? Recently,
patients received this bizarre letter:
“In order to continue the highest level of care for our growing patient volume, we have adjusted our office hours. Effective January 2nd, 2013, (sic)
hours of operation for Phase II cardiac rehabilitation will be Monday,
Wednesday and Friday, 6:00 AM through 4:00 PM. Hours on Tuesday and
Thursday will be 6 AM to 2:30 PM. Thank you for choosing The Christ
Hospital Health Network.”
significantly shortens the afternoon/evening hours daily for a “growing
patient volume.” Didn’t anyone read this Orwellian language before it
went out over an exec’s signature on hospital letterhead? To continue
the highest level of care Christ will provide less, especially if
patients need outpatient cardio rehab after work?
outpatient rehab has too few clients, are cardiologists and cardiac
surgeons at this aggressively marketed heart hospital urging patients to
work out at the Mount Auburn facility? Aren’t these docs telling us to
quit smoking, lose weight and exercise more?
not a question of the quality of the care by therapists and RNs at the
outpatient rehab center; if it were, it would be closed.
Sunday Enquirer carried a valuable column on Dec. 30 on what Ohio laws
passed in 2012 mean. Picked up from the Columbus Dispatch, it’s a marvel
of brevity and clarity and it proves there still can be substance
inside the Sunday Enquirer Local section.
the Good Old Days, the Enquirer would fill local pages with “evergreen”
stories written before holiday slow news days. If these timeless trivia
weren’t used, they could be spiked or recycled for future fallow news
days. Today, evergreens apparently have been tossed on the editorial
pyre while this metropolitan daily’s diminished staff is filling its
shrunken news hole with staff and reader pet photos.
help the Enquirer photographer who brings in a horizontal (“landscape
format”) photo for page A1. It won’t fit. Formulaic layout has ads and
promos bannered across the top and bottom, a deep multi-column vertical
photo or graphic on the left and a little bit of news beside and beneath
that photo or illustration. It seems to be the same every day,
regardless of events. It hardly qualifies as design. Cover pages on the
Local section fare no better. My guess? The format saves thinking every
day about how best to present the news (“content” or “product”) for
remaining page editors at some central Midwest location.
Nation offers evidence-based insights into school shootings from
Katherine S. Newman, coauthor of Rampage: The Social Roots of School
Shootings and dean of arts and sciences at Johns Hopkins.
starters, teach kids it’s right, good and potentially life-saving to
tell adults when other children or teenagers talk about killing,
shooting, etc. Peers of potential killers are our best early warning
research also rebuts NRA’s grandiose goal of an armed “guard” in every
school; most schools are unlikely to become killing grounds. She wrote:
shootings tend to happen in small towns with no history of background
violence rather than in big cities which suffer almost every other kind
of brutal attack except this one. There has been only one example of a
rampage school shooting in an urban setting since 1970. All the others
have taken place in rural towns miles from places like New York or
Chicago, or in suburbs in the Western states.”
was one of the towns that her team studied after Goth-wannabe Michael
Carneal shot five Heath High School classmates: three died, one is
paralyzed and another was badly wounded.
research reflects that of many others in describing Carneal as typical
of school shooters. He was a nerdy young white male who couldn’t make
lasting friendships and never fit in at school or in his
football-worshiping community. He was looking for acceptance and
“shooting people is drawn straight from the Hollywood playbook that
equates masculinity with violence.”
talked a lot about shooting and killing but no one risked being called a
snitch by alerting his parents or adults at school.
Were They Thinking? Gannett’s Journal News in suburban New York went
online with the names and addresses of handgun permit holders in two
counties in its circulation area. The paper says it will sue to force a
third county to provide that information. The paper claims the list and
accompanying interactive map showing permit holder’s locations are a
public service. Malarkey. Horse puckey. Madness. So what if the data
come from public records? So do names of men and women who claim to be
victims of sex crimes. We don’t publish that. So what is a reader
supposed to do with the handgun information? Cui bono?
spin wild fantasies about burglaries to obtain handguns from permit
holders or burglars hitting homes where no one has a conceal/carry
permit. My problem is different:
it’s hard enough to wrest public documents from dim and self-serving
officials. Decisions by the Journal News can’t help but undermine
remaining public support for investigative/database reporting.
Enquirer, Louisville Courier Journal and Indianapolis Star also are
Gannett papers. I hope the Journal News' perversion of First Amendment
assertiveness doesn’t become a route to Gannett corporate rings for
editors and publishers. (My name will appear if the Enquirer identifies
permit holders in its circulation area. I took the class, passed the
exam and obtained my permit for a cover story a year after Ohio allowed
counties to issue conceal/carry permits.)
over the Gannett paper’s online posting of names and addresses of
handgun permit holders (above) quickly morphed into online retaliation.
Some critics posted what they said was the home address and photo of
Gannett corporate CEO Garcia Martore. Other Gannett execs’ home
addresses have been posted and bloggers have listed home addresses and
contact information for staffers at the Journal News. The paper has
hired guards for its Westchester headquarters. If guards aren’t active
law enforcement officers, they must have handgun permits and could be
included in lists published by the paper.
daily Brattleboro Reformer bannered this headline across page 1
recently: “Let is snow, let is snow, let is snow.” Executive editor Tom
D’Errico told romenesko.com
that it was a “terrible, terrible typo. The night crew was
short-staffed and we had an unusual last-minute early deadline with the
storm marching in.” Later, he wrote in his blog: “I kept running over
the reasons in my mind . . . of how or why a mistake like this can and
does happen. But everything just sounded like an excuse. And the truth
is: there is no excuse.”
former President George H.W. Bush had one of those “greatly
exaggerated” brushes with eternity recently. (That now-a-cliche
expression originated in Mark Twain’s response to a reporter who
confused him with ailing cousin James Ross Clemens. Snopes.com says Twain actually told the reporter, “The report of my death was an exaggeration” but added “greatly” in a manuscript.)
to Bush the Elder. Houston’s WBAP-AM blasted an email saying, “The
Death of a President: George H. W. Bush.” Romenesko and Texas Observer
reported that news director Rick Hadley blamed the error on a common
practice among news media: “We get our obituaries ready to go for people
who aren’t doing well.” When Bush entered a local hospital’s ICU, WBAP
prepared an email blast for his death. Hadley said a problem with the
email system sent the death message to about a third of the station’s
subscribers. Thirty minutes later — after callers alerted the station to
its misstep — WBAP quickly sent out a corrected email. Hadley said the
bulletin was not read on the radio.
was typical of smart news media: It updates obits of prominent men and
women to avoid being unprepared when the inevitable occurs. Unfailingly,
that’s on deadlines when staff is short and sources are unavailable
because of holidays or late/early hours. These advance obits have blanks
for timely details: age, cause of death, where the person died and a
credible confirmation of death. Then they are filed in ways meant to
prevent all-too-common premature release.
That caution didn’t prevent Germany's respected news weekly Der Spiegel from mistakenly publishing Bush’s obituary in late December. AP said, “The
unfinished obituary appeared on Der Spiegel's website for a few minutes
before it was spotted by Internet users and removed. In it, the
magazine's New York correspondent described Bush as ‘a colorless
politician’ whose image only improved when it was compared to the later
presidency of his son, George W. Bush.” A Der Spiegel Twitter feed
said, "All newsrooms prepare obituaries for selected figures. The fact
that the one for Bush senior went live was a technical mistake. Sorry!"
ago at UPI, we put out HOLD FOR RELEASE obituaries of leading figures
worldwide. Some of our client media saved the incomplete obits to await
news of the death. Others removed mention of death and often published
them as space-filling weekend feature stories.
Associated Press doesn’t send out advance obits as a practice but Dan
Sewell, AP’s correspondent in Cincinnati, noted a different problem:
the subject outlives the byline reporter. Last year, New York Times
ombuds Margaret Sullivan wrote generally about obits after talking to
obit editor Bill McDonald and touched on that problem: “Occasionally,
the author of the obituary was already dead by the time the piece ran – Vincent Canby on Bob Hope and Mel Gussow on Elizabeth Taylor,
for example. Mr. McDonald said that in most cases when an obit subject
outlives the writer, The Times does a new piece. ‘But in select cases,’
he added, ‘we feel the obit is too fine to discard, particularly if it
is by a writer who brings a certain authority to it.’ The Times assigns a
live body to update the obit and, in the case of Mel Gussow, offered a
note to the reader acknowledging the status of the author.”
all won another battle to hold cops accountable. The American Civil
Liberties Union sued to preempt Chicago police who object to an ACLU
project on police accountability. ACLU wanted to make sure its employees
wouldn’t be busted for recording officers’ words. The federal appellate
court in Chicago said we all share a First Amendment right to record
what police say to us. The U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the
Chicago police appeal, affirming the lower court ruling. Earlier last
year, federal courts said we have a right to photograph police in
public. My guess is dimmer, bolder police everywhere will continue to
arrest reporters who record their words and others who photograph their
actions. That’s not futile. The possibility of an arrest record — even
knowing the charge will be tossed by a judge or prosecutor — can be
intimidating and leave cops free of scrutiny.
Congress obscure methods and goals in naming legislation but reporters
should challenge any legislator who talks about “preventing” gun
We can’t prevent it. With some nuts among
the 300-plus million living in this country and almost nonexistent mental
health programs, some killers will find and use firearms on other
people. We can’t prevent it. That we have hundreds of millions of
firearms makes massacres even likelier. Reporters should press
vote-seeking legislators on how their proposed restrictions will limit
casualties from inevitable firearm violence. That brings us back to the
1994 restriction on high-capacity magazines for semi-automatic weapons.
Hunting weapons and pistols for self-defense don’t need or use them.
by Bill Sloat
139 days ago
Massie's first bill would repeal federal safety buffer enacted in 1990
U.S. Rep. Tom Massie, the congressman who represents the Kentucky side of the Cincinnati metropolitan area, used his first day in Congress to file a bill that would erase a 23-year-old federal ban that makes it a crime to carry guns near schools.At the moment, Massie does not have any co-sponsors signed up. Details are sparse because the government printing office says it does not yet have the full text of the measure to put online. The existing Gun-Free School Act of 1990, which was adopted when former president George H.W. Bush, a Republican, was in the White House is viewable here. The bill was amended in 1995. As late as 1999, the National Rifle Association (NRA) was testifying in support of the measure, a position it seems to have dropped after the Sandy Hook massacre.Under the existing law, so-called “school zones” include but are not
limited to parks, sidewalks, roads and highways within 1,000 feet of the
property line of a public or private elementary, middle or high school.
The law makes it practically impossible to travel in populated areas
without entering a "gun-free school zone." People with state-issued
licenses or permits to carry guns are exempted by the federal law, but
the exemption is only good in the state that issued the permit.The law doesn’t exempt out-of-state travelers who have permits, nor does
it allow off-duty police officers to pack a weapon in a school. And it
is a violation for anyone other than an on-duty police officer or a
school security guard to discharge a firearm in a school zone for any
reason. A state permit does not exempt a person from the discharge
is a copy of the bill that retired U.S. Rep. Ron Paul introduced while
the Texan was campaigning for the Republican presidential nomination. He called
his repeal measure the Citizen Protection Act, and he got no support from
co-sponsors. Paul’s bill died when the new Congress was sworn in
yesterday, but Massie is now resurrecting it.Massie is a tea party adherent — elected last fall to
replace Geoff Davis — who largely shares the political philosophies of Paul and his son, Sen. Rand Paul, who is also from Kentucky. Massie voted
against John Boehner for speaker on the opening day of the 113th
Congress, an act of open defiance against the Republican House leadership.
by German Lopez
140 days ago
Fiscal cliff averted despite local politicians, defense cuts delayed, wind tax credit renewed
The fiscal cliff was averted, but some Greater Cincinnati politicians didn’t do much to help.
U.S. Speaker John Boehner voted for the final fiscal cliff deal, but
Republican U.S. Reps. Steve Chabot, Jean Schmidt and Mike Turner voted
against the deal. Ohio’s U.S. Sens. Rob Portman, a Republican, and
Sherrod Brown, a Democrat, voted in favor of the deal.
U.S. Congress may have averted the fiscal cliff, but the
spending cuts were only delayed for two months. For jobs at the
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, that means another congressional
showdown in March could decide the fate of thousands of jobs. On the other hand, no one is surprised Congress reacted to a crisis by kicking the can down the road.
As part of the fiscal cliff deal, Ohio’s wind industry should feel a little safer
thanks to the extension of wind energy tax credits. Still, advocates are frustrated funding for wind energy is part of a
“stop-and-start policy” that can suddenly continue or end depending on
last-minute congressional deals.
The Buckeye Firearms Association is training and arming 24 teachers through a pilot program in the spring. A previous CityBeat analysis
found no evidence that arming teachers would help stop gun violence; in
fact, armed people tend to be in greater danger of violence.
Ohio and Kentucky are still in the bottom half of Forbes’ ranking for businesses, but they’re showing improvement.
The Ohio Liberty Coalition, a tea party group, is not
happy with Gov. John Kasich. The group is upset Kasich supposedly
violated the state’s Health Care Freedom Amendment by signing
legislation that compels all Ohioans with health care insurance to buy autism coverage. If even conservatives are angry at Kasich, who’s happy with him?
Cincinnati-based Macy’s is closing six stores, but none of them are in the Cincinnati area.
Surprise! Research has linked being overweight (but not obese) with lower risk of mortality.
During her final days as commander, Sunita Williams of NASA recorded a tour of the International Space Station.
A new study found newborn babies know the difference between their native language and a foreign one.
by Ben L. Kaufman
Media musings from Cincinnati and beyond
a small weekly responds to an unimaginable disaster and scores a world
scoop is a lesson in the best of journalism. Poynter online’s Julie Moos
described what happened after Newtown Bee associate editor Shannon
Hicks heard the initial call over her police scanner.
drove the mile and a quarter and arrived behind the first dozen police
officers. She started taking photographs through her windshield and
captured her image of a line of children being led away from the
slaughter. “I’m conflicted,” Hicks
said about her photo. “I don’t want people to be upset with me, and I do
appreciate the journalists, especially, who have commented, saying
‘We’re just documenting the news.’ It’s harder when it’s in your
hometown and these are children we’re gonna watch grow up, the ones who
made it. I know people are gonna be upset, but at the same time I felt I
was doing something important.”
editor John Voket explained what was behind that image. “Police and
school system have a protocol” for evacuation. “Children get into a
conga line, shoulder to shoulder, and the only person that’s allowed to
keep their eyes open is the locomotive at the front of the line, usually
an adult. And every other kid has to keep their eyes closed from the
minute they were exiting the classroom to when they got about a couple
hundred yards into the parking lot.”
arrived about 20 minutes later and colleague Hicks “passed the baton”
to him. Hicks also is a volunteer firefighter. The firehouse is next to
the school. “I literally put on my firefighter gear . . . I was there as
a firefighter probably for not even more than 20 minutes before my
editor said he wanted me back in the office to work with him to
coordinate coverage from there.”
continued reporting, but “We operate a little differently because our
job is to take care of the community so we were inside helping to
comfort victims and trying to provide human support without necessarily
making reporting the No. 1 priority. The publisher came down to
comfort some of the families a little later in the day.” R. Scudder
Smith has been Bee publisher since 1973; he is the fourth member of his family to run The Bee
since they founded it in 1877. The paper, which has a full-time
editorial staff of eight, circulates to about two-thirds of the
community of about 29,000.
was Friday and the weekly Bee front page was ready to print. It couldn’t
be changed. “We’ve been putting everything on our website,” publisher
Smith told AP.
added that the traffic surge repeatedly crashed the website until the
Bee acquired “an intermediary service to supersize our bandwidth . . .
We got back up and running this (Saturday) morning.” The staff used
social media to spread information about school lockdowns, re-routed traffic, and grief counseling.
“Facebook and Twitter accounts have been a lifeline to our community
and it shows because 20 percent of the community are following us.” The
Bee also was “looking at doing a special extra to be on the newsstands
those of us outside Newtown, Conn., we can turn to the renewed duel over
gun control. If it were a song, tired and familiar gun control lyrics
would be among “Worst Hits Ever.” It didn’t take long for gun control
advocates to embrace the Sandy Hook massacre and the bellicose NRA to
opt for rare silence. Obama renewed his unredeemed calls for gun
control although he and Mitt Romney dodged the issue in the just-ended
campaign. It was a hornets’ nest neither man opted to kick and reporters
apparently were unable to raise with the candidates.
the Sandy Hook slaughter, fair and balanced Fox News banned discussion
of gun control from the cable network. Maybe Fox News feared we really
would decide if they really reported. New York magazine said the ban spotlights
the “growing chasm between Rupert Murdoch and [Fox News president]
Roger Ailes.” Ailes reportedly is a gun enthusiast. Murdoch, CEO of News
Corp., which owns Fox News, had tweeted a call for stricter gun
control, imploring for “some bold leadership action” from Obama.
me be churlish when everyone else is sympathizing with families,
survivors and first responders. Slaughtering 20 children is awful, but
reporters and editors are familiar with how badly Americans treat urban,
suburban, small town and rural children every day. In Obama’s Chicago
and many other urban areas, gunfire is an omnipresent fact of childhood.
Possibly one-fourth of all American children live in poverty as defined
by federal guidelines. For these kids, federally funded school meals
might be more than a complement to home meals. Health care for poor and
malnourished children isn’t much better than their educations. Medicaid
is among the anti-poverty programs high on the GOP priorities for
absolute cuts and/or reduced annual increases. And let’s not even get
into continuing coverage of physical and sexual child abuse, trafficking
minors and lifelong handicaps from poor or nonexistent prenatal care or
maternal drug and alcohol abuse.
foolish or ignorant reporters credit pious assertions that legislation
can prevent disturbed individuals from obtaining guns and killing as
many people as they can. There are more than 310 million people in this
country. Some are or will become seriously mentally disturbed and obtain
one or more of the hundreds of millions of firearms Americans own. A
Columbine or Sandy Hook could happen again any day.
on the shooting victims rather than shooters might reduce any copycat
effect. Stories and photos elevating killers to celebrity have been
blamed for further rampages. Even though the killer never was
identified, that was the inference drawn from Tylenol poisonings 30
years ago; copycats tried to poison Tylenol capsules. When coverage
began to fade, so did copycat crimes.
leaders realized years ago that traditional (and valuable) Eddie Eagle
gun safety comics and courses were insufficient to motivate and keep
members and their dues. Fear and anger would be more effective. Real and
imagined government controls became NRA’s cause. Few modern American
movements have been as durable and effective as the NRA.
is powerful because we are a democracy. It can mobilize more than 4
million members and fellow travelers as voters, donors and voices in the
news media. Elected representatives who want to keep their jobs quite
reasonably try to avoid the NRA’s opposition. Gun control advocates
evince nothing like this single-minded devotion to their cause.
1994, the Clinton administration won a10-year limit on the sale of
assault-style weapons and large capacity magazines for their ammunition.
I went to a gun store in Hamilton to cover a rush to beat the ban.
Chinese assault-style rifles and curved high-capacity magazines were
selling as fast as staff could pry open crates. As I watched, the price
rose $10 with each new crate: demand and supply. Men who talked to me
said they were buying because of the imminent controls on assault-style
rifles and high-capacity magazines. A few admitted fear of civil unrest
or some undefined federal assault. Most said they wanted a
military-style rifle for shooting targets or empty beer cans and this
might be their last chance.That 10-year ban died in 2004 when
Republicans owned all three branches of federal government and didn’t
seek renewal. However, recent killings that required assault-style
weapons with large-capacity magazines might prompt reconsideration of
the ban. Adam Lanza reportedly carried hundreds of rounds of ammunition
in high-capacity magazines. No one knows why he didn’t use them.
gun control measure that’s not DOA will have to respect millions of
long guns — rifles and shotguns — used by hunters, farmers and others.
That distinction is an important part of this story already handicapped
by the paucity of journalists who hunt or otherwise own firearms.
addition to an unfamiliarity with firearms, partisan hyperbole also
handicaps writing about guns and gun control. It can be hard to find
neutral sources who share reporters’ interest in accurate coverage.
Stenographic reporting giving “both sides” isn’t good enough;
journalists must know enough to challenge obvious partisan
misstatements. We are not obligated to report what we know to be untrue
or to label it as such.
with gun control cropped up in a recent Enquirer story about a failed
armed robbery attempt inside a suburban Sunoco station. Employees with a
handgun and a shotgun fatally wounded the would-be bandit. The Enquirer
story said it was unclear whether the employees had conceal-carry
licenses for those firearms. Unless someone somehow cloaked a shotgun’s
18-28” barrel, no conceal/carry permit is required. Unless the other
Sunoco clerk carried the pistol under his clothes, he didn’t need a
permit. Wearing it openly or storing it under the counter does not
require a conceal/carry permit. So what was the point of that line in
the story? Just because a cop might have said it doesn’t mean the
reporter had to share it. That’s what I’m talking about.
in much gun control coverage is Congress’ inability to craft sensible,
workable bipartisan gun control specifics that can survive NRA
opposition and Supreme Court scrutiny. Firearm confiscation is out of
the question. So is universal registration which raises NRA-orchestrated
fear of confiscation — by ATF, the UN or some other demon de jour — to hysteria. Moreover, the court affirmed an individual Second
Amendment right to own guns in 2010 but it did not rule out federal,
state or local regulations governing firearm use.
faced with new rage over shootings should remind partisans that we have
gun control already. Forty nine states issue conceal/carry permits but
specify where those handguns may not be carried. Illinois — State No.
50 — is under court order to replace its ban with a conceal/carry
permit system. Many if not most municipalities bar gun owners from
firing their weapons within city limits with the exception of
self-defense. States commonly limit when hunters can use rifles and/or
shotguns and they can require a certain size bullet for large-game
hunting. Landowners may bar hunters from their property during
state-sanctioned hunting seasons.
are federal limits on how short a “sawed off” shotgun or rifle barrel
may be. There are laws limiting ownership of silencers and fully
automatic machine guns and submachine guns. Federally licensed firearms
dealers must run background checks on prospective buyers and turn away
those who fail or won’t comply. Dealers can deny convicted felons a gun
under federal and many state laws. A legal purchaser may not buy a
firearm for someone who would fail a federal background check.
Mentally-ill customers can be turned away by dealers.
of the roughly 12,000 Americans shot to death annually are killed with
shot with shotguns or rifles. They’re shot with pistols. So when gun
control is promoted, reporters should press advocates to say what they
• Before reporters share the lunacy of arming
teachers, ask local cops how many rounds typically are fired from their
handguns in an armed encounter . . . and how many of those bullets hit
their target. Not many. It's very, very difficult for someone trained
even at the level of police to accurately fire when adrenaline is
pumping. The teacher might end up shooting more students than the
intruder. Better to count on the low probability of an armed intrusion.
Think about how rare this is. Awful when it happens, but very, very
rare, even in communities where other shootings are far more frequent.
by German Lopez
Posted In: News
, Gun Violence
at 12:13 PM | Permalink
Considerable research suggests it wouldn’t help
In the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre,
Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters suggested to WCPO TV that teachers “trained to
handle a weapon” should be armed.
The idea isn’t surprising coming from the Republican
county prosecutor. In the onset of tragedies like the one in Sandy Hook
Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., conservatives tend to counter
liberal cries for more gun control by saying the United States actually
needs more guns. They argue an armed society deters and is more
effective in stopping criminals.
The problem is the idea contradicts broader scientific
research. Following the attack at Tucson, Ariz., that nearly killed
former U.S. representative Gabrielle Giffords, economist Richard Florida
looked state-by-state into what factors correlate with gun violence.
He found no correlation between gun violence and mental illness, higher
stress levels, neurotic personalities, higher unemployment or
inequality. However, his research did find that the places with the most
gun control tend to have less gun violence.
Researchers at Harvard Injury Control Research Center found another correlation:
Whether looking at countries or states, more guns means more homicides.
More specifically, men and women in places with more firearms are at a
larger risk for gun-related homicide.
The University of Pennsylvania tackled the issue from a different angle
in 2009: The researchers looked at gun assault cases to see if gun
owners were more or less likely to be shot. They found people with guns
were 4.46 times more likely to be shot and people who had a chance to
resist were 5.45 times more likely to be shot.
In 2009, ABC News ran a 20/20 special
that used a simulation to gauge whether armed civilians can stop
attacks. The simulation placed trained and armed students into a
classroom, where they thought they would be getting additional
firearms training. In the middle of the lecture, an armed gunman broke
into the classroom and began shooting the teacher and students with fake
rounds. In all the examples shown, none of the students were able to
stop the gunman before taking shots that would have been deadly in a
real scenario. Essentially, being trained in the use of a firearm was
not enough to prepare someone for the high levels of distorting stress
experienced in a real crisis.
In their defense, conservatives typically point to a few stories, including one in which a gun-toting Florida senior stopped an armed robbery at an Internet cafe.
But are a few feel-good stories enough to trump scientific research?
After all, one of the main purposes of the social sciences is to sort
through outliers and find real tends with strong evidence.
Looking at the facts and research available, perhaps it’s better
to focus on mental health services and gun control than it is to arm
school teachers and staff, as suggested in CityBeat’s Dec. 19 news commentary.
CityBeat could not immediately reach the
prosecutor’s office for comments through phone or email. This story will
be updated if comments become available.
by German Lopez
DeWine calls for school staff training, Music Hall to be leased, bus money not for streetcar
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is proposing
training school staff and teachers to be first responders in the case
of an attack. The news comes in the wake of the massacre in Sandy Hook
Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., which caused the deaths of 20
children and six adults. CityBeat proposed its own solution in this week’s commentary: Make this time different by focusing on mental health services and gun control.
Cincinnati will lease Music Hall for 75 years to the Music Hall Revitalization Company (MHRC). The lease
is part of a plan to renovate the iconic building to include more
comfortable seating, extra restroom capacity, heating, air conditioning,
improved plumbing and new escalator models. During the renovations,
Music Hall will be closed for 17 months.
City Council passed
a resolution promising not to use Metro bus money for the streetcar.
The supposed conflict between the city of Cincinnati and the Southwest
Ohio Regional Transit Authority (SORTA) is being drummed up by the
media, but it’s really much ado about nothing.
Metropolitan Sewer District rates will go up by 5 percent in early 2013.
The Cincinnati Health Department is pushing
recommendations from a lead hazard study. The recommendations would
prohibit lead-based paint hazards and require all properties to be free
of lead-based paint, dust and soil. City Council is asking the health
department to carry out the regulations, and it expects from a plan and
timetable from regulators within 60 days. One study found getting rid of lead would do wonders for school performance
A Brookings Institute ranking placed Greater Cincinnati among the worst areas in the country due to falling home prices.
Cincinnati-based Fifth Third Bank agreed
to a $16 million settlement in a securities fraud case. The
four-year-old lawsuit was brought in the onset of 2008’s financial
crisis, when the bank’s stock plummeted as it took several large
Cincinnati’s Horseshoe Casino still needs to fill 450 positions in food and beverage, marketing, finance, security and more. A Washington Post analysis found casinos tend to bring jobs, but they also bring crime, bankruptcy and even suicide.
As expected, hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is helping
Ohio’s economy. The state has 39,000 jobs attached to oil and gas this
year, and the number is expected to triple by the end of the decade. To
take advantage of the boom, Ohio Gov. John Kasich says he will push his oil-and-gas severance tax in 2013. But the plan faces opposition from liberals and conservatives.
If Ohio Republicans tried to push “right-to-work” legislation, it would lead to a very nasty public fight, The Plain Dealer reports. Kasich and Republican lawmakers didn’t rule out
using ballot initiatives to push conservative ideas like right-to-work
in a press conference yesterday, but he did say he’s like a horse with
blinders on, focusing on job creation.
The animal and robot takeover have been merged in the BigDog robot. It can now obey voice commands, follow and roll over.
0 Comments · Wednesday, December 19, 2012
On Dec. 14, the United States was hit by
another mass shooting. This time, a gunman forced himself into an
elementary school and killed 20 children and six adults.
by German Lopez
Qualls to push for federal gun regulations, UC to renovate Nippert, company rigs bid process
Metal detectors could come back
to City Hall, but local legislators can’t do much more regarding local
gun control. Still, Vice Mayor Roxanne Qualls and other City Council
members will begin pushing for more federal regulations on guns starting
today. President Barack Obama is already beginning to drum up
support for more regulations on guns, including a ban on assault
weapons and high-capacity ammunition clips. He also wants to close a
loophole that allows people to buy firearms at gun shows without
background checks. At the state level, a new bill loosening gun regulations in Ohio is facing criticism.
The bill will make it easier to store firearms in cars and allows them for
the first time in parking garages under the Ohio Statehouse and a nearby
office tower. Gov. John Kasich said he will sign the bill.The University of Cincinnati is launching
a fundraising effort for the renovation of Nippert Stadium. The project
could cost as much as $70 million. The university wants to offset as
much of the cost as possible to build premium seating, with the
possibility of 28 new luxury boxes and more than 1,400 premium seats
being added. Goals could change based on demand and fundraising efforts.A Cincinnati-based company and its top executive have pleaded guilty to circumventing Ohio’s competitive bid process. The actions cost Ohio taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars,
according to Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. The company circumvented
the competitive process by submitting multiple bids on road jobs under
different names, creating the illusion of competition. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a possible candidate for the presidency in 2016, will headline
a Hamilton County GOP event. He will be a featured speaker next month
at the Northeast Hamilton County Republican Club's annual pancake
breakfast.The Cincinnati College Preparatory Academy failed to follow its own compensation policies, resulting in improper over-payments of $2,325, according to Ohio State Auditor Dave Yost.Top state officials will begin pushing and outlining school safety efforts in the wake of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. State Impact Ohio has a fantastic infographic showing the growth of charter schools in Ohio. In the Cincinnati urban district, charter schools now host 6,642 students.A new state policy will automatically refund businesses when they’ve overpaid their taxes. The first round of the policy will refund businesses in Ohio $13 million.The animal takeover continues. Due to the effects of climate change, some animals are moving into cities. On the bright side, animals can be pretty cute. Here is a dog flipping over its food, and here are cats locked in deadly combat against a printer.