Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams, right, holds a news conference, Sunday, Aug. 26, 2018, in Jacksonville, Fla., after a gunman opened fire Sunday during an online video game tournament that was being livestreamed from a Florida mall, killing multiple people and sending many others to hospitals. (AP Photo/Laura Heald)
Over the weekend, 24-year-old David Katz walked into a gaming venue in Jacksonville, FL where a tournament was being held on the Madden pro football game/simulator. He found a game being played by, among others, Elijah Clayton Black, 22, and Taylor Robertson, 28. Katz had a relationship (real or virtual is kind of hard to tell) with both men. He pulled a pistol and opened fire. Before Katz took his own life, he killed Black and Robertson and left at least thirteen others injured from a combination of gunshots and injuries sustained while trying to flee the area.
As surely as night follows day, there were the predictable calls for more laws.
I am horrified by yet another mass shooting, this time in Jacksonville, Fla.
How long will we let the NRA continue to hold the reins in Washington and block life-saving gun safety reform? President Trump and the Republican Congress must answer to the people of this country.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) August 26, 2018
I’m infuriated—we have the weakest gun laws in the nation.
What happened Friday at Raines High, what happened behind me, what happened at Pulse, in Parkland. It keeps happening in Florida.
Time and change is upon us. Together, we will take action and save lives in our state. pic.twitter.com/VSqb07VHlZ
— Mayor Philip Levine (@MayorLevine) August 27, 2018
This, however, was the most hilarious.
I have to confess ignorance as to the existence of the “Ali Velshi” character. I assume he’s CNN’s take on a Sasha Baron Cohen character but he might be real. “Velshi” describes Florida’s laws as ridiculously easy even though they require a 3-day waiting period and give the police the right to confiscate firearms if friends or relatives believe a person is dangerous.
The problem is that Katz was a Maryland resident. And he seems to have bought his handguns, two of them, in Baltimore. And those laws work really, really well.
The fact yielded this howler from probably the second stupidest gun-grabber out there:
Regardless of the legalities of the gun purchasing process, the Jacksonville shooter could have very easily purchased a gun in nearby Virginia or in Florida from an unlicensed dealer with no background check at all. In many states, it’s easier to buy a gun than Sudafed.
— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) August 28, 2018
And with all those gun control laws, Maryland has a higher violent crime and homicide rate than Florida. https://t.co/M7URvR4BJR
— Cam Edwards (@CamEdwards) August 28, 2018
According to reporting, Katz had has psychiatric problems for a decade.
“David would go days without bathing, would play video games until 4 a.m. on school nights, would walk around the house in circles,” Howard County Circuit Judge Lenore Gelfman wrote in 2010. “[He] was failing all classes at Hammond High, was unresponsive to school teachers and uncooperative with school psychotherapists/counselors, and was extremely hostile toward his mother.”
Katz once punched a hole through his mother’s bedroom door to retrieve the video game controllers she had taken from him, his mother, Elizabeth Katz, told the court.
The young man’s mental health and treatment were among the issues at the center of a contentious decade-long divorce case between his parents. Hundreds of pages of court records reveal his troubling behavior and his parents’ search for a treatment in the years preceding Sunday’s deadly attack.
While there were voices everywhere accusing conservatives of “politicizing” the murder of Mollie Tibbetts (refresher, she was murdered by an illegal alien who was using fake identification to gain employment), there is an eerie silence from those same people as a shooting in which the system worked as promised in one of the most gun-restrictive states in the country is blamed for what looks like a premeditated attack and is used as an rallying cry to get people to vote in Florida:
Florida- tomorrow you have an opportunity to vote for someone who cares about gun reform, who is pro-choice, and someone who cares about minorities. His name is Bill Nelson @SenBillNelson
— Chelsea Handler (@chelseahandler) August 27, 2018
TOMORROW YOU GET TO VOTE. I AM SO JEALOUS. https://t.co/aQe0sLyeOH
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) August 27, 2018