Archive for December, 2012

Banning Guns Will Not Stop A Killer

Posted: December 20, 2012 in Nitegator

Cyanide used to kill

James “Jim” Jones was the founder and leader of the Peoples Temple, best known for the mass suicide in 1978 of 914 of its members in Jonestown, Guyana, and the murder of five individuals at a nearby airstrip. Over 200 children were murdered at Jonestown, almost all of them by cyanide poisoning.

In November 1978, U.S. Congressman Leo Ryan led a fact-finding mission to Jonestown to investigate allegations of human rights abuses. Ryan’s delegation included relatives of Temple members, Don Harris, an NBC network news reporter, an NBC cameraman and reporters for various newspapers. The group arrived in Georgetown on November 15. On November 17, Ryan’s delegation traveled by airplane to Jonestown. The delegation left hurriedly the afternoon of November 18 after Temple member Don Sly attacked Ryan with a knife. The attack was thwarted, bringing the visit to an abrupt end. Congressman Ryan and his people succeeded in taking with them fifteen People’s Temple members who had expressed a wish to leave. At that time, Jones made no attempt to prevent their departure. As members of Ryan’s delegation boarded two planes at the airstrip, Jones’ “Red Brigade” armed guards arrived in a tractor-pulled trailer and began shooting at the delegation. The guards killed Congressman Ryan and four others near a twin engine Otter aircraft. At the same time, one of the supposed defectors, Larry Layton, drew a weapon and began firing on members of the party that had already boarded a small Cessna.

On a tape Jones can be heard saying, “Don’t be afraid to die,” that death is “just stepping over into another plane” and that it’s “a friend.” Jones and several members argued that the group should commit “revolutionary suicide” by drinking cyanide-laced grape-flavored Flavor Aid. Later that same day, 909 inhabitants of Jonestown,[90] 303 of them children, died of apparent cyanide poisoning, mostly in and around a pavilion. The incident in Guyana ranks among the largest mass suicides in history, though most likely it involved forced suicide and/or murder, and was the single greatest loss of American civilian life in a non-natural disaster until the events of September 11, 2001.

Ammonium Nitrate used to kill

Timothy McVeigh was stopped by Oklahoma State Trooper Charlie Hanger for driving without a license plate and arrested for unlawfully carrying a weapon. The Oklahoma City bombing was a terrorist bomb attack on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995. It would remain the most destructive act of terrorism on American soil until the September 11, 2001 attacks. The Oklahoma blast claimed 168 lives, including 19 children under the age of 6, and injured more than 680 people. The blast destroyed or damaged 324 buildings within a sixteen-block radius, destroyed or burned 86 cars, and shattered glass in 258 nearby buildings. (more…)