Red, Blue, and Brady

41: If You Know It, You Own It

January 27, 2020
Red, Blue, and Brady
41: If You Know It, You Own It
Chapters
Red, Blue, and Brady
41: If You Know It, You Own It
Jan 27, 2020
Brady

This week, Brady tackles  policing, intentional data loss, and how to get rid of guns in a forge. Today, JJ and Vice President of Policy at Brady, Christian Heyne, are joined by David Chipman, a Senior Policy Advisor at the gun violence prevention organization Giffords, and currently serves on the Firearms Committee of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He also served for 25 years as a special agent for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, aka, the ATF. Today, David is here to detail why the Tiahrt Amendment (which prohibits the ATF from maintaining a searchable database--instead, officers attempting to trace a gun used in the commission of a crime must use a card catalog and phone system to track the weapon) is harming the American people, and why technologies like Shot Spotter are changing gun violence prevention. 

Then, in our “unbelievable, but” segment, JJ is talking about zombie guns (no, really), and then  wrapping up our time together with a selection of gun violence, and gun violence prevention, news from this week. 
 

Mentioned in this podcast:

For more information on Brady, follow us on social @Bradybuzz, or via our website at bradyunited.org. Full transcripts and bibliography available at bradyunited.org/podcast.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.
Music provided by: David “Drumcrazie” Curby
Special thanks to Hogan Lovells, for their long standing legal support
 ℗&©2019 Red, Blue, and Brady

Show Notes Transcript

This week, Brady tackles  policing, intentional data loss, and how to get rid of guns in a forge. Today, JJ and Vice President of Policy at Brady, Christian Heyne, are joined by David Chipman, a Senior Policy Advisor at the gun violence prevention organization Giffords, and currently serves on the Firearms Committee of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He also served for 25 years as a special agent for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, aka, the ATF. Today, David is here to detail why the Tiahrt Amendment (which prohibits the ATF from maintaining a searchable database--instead, officers attempting to trace a gun used in the commission of a crime must use a card catalog and phone system to track the weapon) is harming the American people, and why technologies like Shot Spotter are changing gun violence prevention. 

Then, in our “unbelievable, but” segment, JJ is talking about zombie guns (no, really), and then  wrapping up our time together with a selection of gun violence, and gun violence prevention, news from this week. 
 

Mentioned in this podcast:

For more information on Brady, follow us on social @Bradybuzz, or via our website at bradyunited.org. Full transcripts and bibliography available at bradyunited.org/podcast.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.
Music provided by: David “Drumcrazie” Curby
Special thanks to Hogan Lovells, for their long standing legal support
 ℗&©2019 Red, Blue, and Brady

Support the show (https://www.bradyunited.org/donate)

JJ:
00:08
Hey everybody, this is the legal disclaimer where we tell you that the views, thoughts and opinions shared on this podcast belong solely to the person talking to you right now and not necessarily Brady or Brady's affiliates. Please know that this podcast contains discussions of violence that some people may find disturbing. It's okay, that's normal. We find it disturbing, too.  
JJ:
00:41
Welcome back to Red, Blue and Brady. On today's episode, Christian Heyne rides as my co-host again, I think we should in JP's memory get the hashtag going of #replaceChristian, shall we? But who I don't want to replace is our guest, Mr David Shipman. Now David is a senior policy advisor at the gun violence prevention organization Giffords, and he also serves on the Firearms Committee of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He also served for 25 years as a special agent for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, a k a. The ATF. So David, super impressive, and as always, I've got severe imposter syndrome here. Now David is here with me and Christian to talk to us about policing intentional data loss and how to get rid of guns in a forge. No, legitimately, we talk about how to get rid of guns in a forge, then in our "Unbelievable, But!" segment, I'll be letting you know all about how to prepare for the zombie apocalypse. Well, according to gun sellers, anyway, then finally, I'll be wrapping up our time together with a selection on gun violence and gun violence prevention news from this week. Now I say selection, of course, because there's no way to fit in all the news that happened this weekend in just one podcast. But you know, we're here together, and that means a lot. And as you'll hear David say, if you know it, you can own   
JJ:
02:00
I'm so excited for this episode. So I want to jump right into it. So of course you know listeners know I'm JJ, but I've got two other phenomenal people in the room. So, Christian, can I have you introduced yourself?
Christian Heyne:
02:12
Yes, Christian Heyne, vice president of policy here at Brady.
JJ:
02:15
And of course, the man of the hour, Mr. David Chipman. David, can you introduce yourself to our listeners?
David Chipman:
02:20
My name is David Chipman. I'm a senior policy advisor at Giffords and I was an ATF special agent for 25 years.
JJ:
02:27
Well, and we have so much to talk about and I have so many questions for you, but I think we do have to sort of start with that. Can you tell us a little bit about what it's like to work for Giffords, what it's like to work with Gabby Giffords?
David Chipman:
02:38
Yeah, it's like being around a superstar now that Mark Kelly, her husband, is running for Senate, he is focused on that. And so I've had a lot more time to spend with Gabby. For people who love Gabby, they should know she's even getting better, which is interesting. I think most people in recovery reach a plateau. That's not her case. She still is getting stronger and better. She has much more energy than I do, and she is an inspiration. Anytime I don't feel like going to work, I know I better get out of bed cause she will. And she she, you know, has powerfully committed her life to this endeavor. And, you know, I'm glad that she has. I mean, with regards to what it has meant, that she survived an assassination attempt within a time where there was a lot of rhetoric that made such an attempt. I don't think not unthought of. I mean, it was out there and then our lack of action at the time was really scary to me. Actually, in the United States, we've usually followed political attacks with action, you know, the 1960s led to the 1968 gun control Act. Brady followed. It seemed like, well, maybe we do care about politicians who are who are harmed by gun violence. But I think the lack of an action following Gabby shooting proved to me that it was much more entrenched than that. And so I'm glad she's committed to this. You know, we're fortunate that, you know, Gabby was shot with a handgun. She was, would have never survived if she was saw shot with an assault rifle. The fact that so many were shot that day has everything to do with, you know, the magazine capacity of that gun and how citizens thwarted the continual shooting once that shooter ran out of ammunition at about 32 rounds. So there are a lot of policy things surrounding that shooting, but you know, Gabby has a unique ability to bring people together. And she has a culture, just evidence of me being here at Brady today, which is that we want to uplift everyone no matter what they believe in this movement. Man, she's just a believer that we it's all hands on deck. Yeah, it's an absolute honor to work for her, but thanks for bringing out Gabby. And we're very proud of her. And we're proud of what she does for the entire movement.
Christian Heyne:
04:48
Yeah, Yeah, well and we would echo that. I mean, you know, for us, there are a lot of parallels, right? Like Jim and Sarah Brady, especially. I'm fairly new to Brady, but every time I go out, I, you know, in the field and meet anybody has been doing this work for a while. They will tell me a Jim and Sarah story, right? And I think it is important to know that the work that they did it didn't happen, that change that you're describing, didn't happen overnight, right? It took the better part of a decade, and you look at Gabby's resolve to fundamentally change the way that we're talking. You know, things have been happening since her shooting. She, you know, the work of Giffords has fundamentally helped change this movement, and it for us, it's thrilling to be able to do it together.  
JJ:
05:27
Well, something that I'm really excited about is something that I see Brady doing. And then also, of course, Giffords doing which is bringing gun owners and sort of gun enthusiasts into the fold, but also making sure that gun violence prevention advocates are gun savvy, that they're aware of this deep culture and all of this, like technical know how that goes into responsible gun ownership.
David Chipman:
05:46
Yeah, I think that that's an element that is often times missing from the movement but makes sense. 70% of Americans don't own guns, so why should they know technical details about them?
Christian Heyne:
05:56
I think that's really interesting and an important part of the way that you present your guns 101 which I have attended the school Chipman, I think now 10 times or something, You know, I think I'm in the double digits, but but a really important point that you make is you know, you don't necessarily need to be an expert there. There are pitfalls that you don't want and traps you don't want to jump into. But remember that the voice of a mother who has had a child taken from them or, you know, people who turn on the news and are concerned with what's happening in communities across country like those voices are important and matter, and you don't need to be a technical expert, so don't get don't fall to that trap. I think it's an important part of your advocacy.
David Chipman:
06:32
Yeah, I think that's right. Um, I try to encourage anyone concerned about gun violence prevention to own that--it's the prevention of violence. Guns play a role in that, obviously. But I don't think that you need to be a technical expert in guns, to own your space in this movement and talk about it confidently and aggressively. We come from a place where we want to live in a world where no one fears getting shot by any gun. So once you talk about any gun, being able to differentiate one from another is really not that important. So my firearms 101 for advocates, really is a talk about increasing someone's confidence and more a pledge to help people do no harm to our movement by just stating things that are inaccurate or make you look naive or uninformed.  
David Chipman:
07:16
Yeah, I think you know, we all play unique roles in this movement, and, you know, my 25 years as an ATF agent. I was on the SWAT team. My unique role was knocking down the door, which most people think that being the first person in a raid is the most dangerous. I always knew that it was the safest you've knocked down the door, and then the second person comes through the door. It's always more dangerous for the second person, but we all play a role. And certainly I think that I found a unique role in our collective movement. And oftentimes it's, um, a supportive factor. To victims, advocates that they know I have their back and that, you know, I could give them some cover because I carried a gun for 25 years. I'm a concealed carry owner, in Virginia it's very difficult for someone to argue I'm anti-gun even though that they do. But that being said, you know, I do enjoy in those moments where I can create space for those who have suffered personally from gun violence to be able to be more confident, feel more safe to speak their truth.    
Christian Heyne:
08:18
Yeah, well, ultimately, I think you are then more representative of the law abiding responsible gun owners that I have conversations with across the country, right? People who own their weapons, who for various reasons who have grown up in the culture of guns but at the same time are just as concerned with gun violence in America that do see the common sense in requiring background checks for all gun sales because they've never bought a gun without a background check, right? And so your voice, I think, is really pivotal in this movement and we are thankful to have it.
JJ:
08:48
Well and that leads to my question of what prompted you to get into gun violence prevention. I mean, one could argue that a long history of law enforcement is a history of gun violence prevention. But what made you specifically, like, sort of enter this field formally?
David Chipman:
09:00
Yeah, I think all of us, in our professional careers that you get to a certain point, you know, I'm now in my fifties and you look back and and you you try to examine or explain, when asked a question like that, like how did you end up here? And for me it started really early. My first experience with gun violence was actually I was a middle school student who was on an exchange program in Belgium, and my president had just been shot, Ronald Reagan. And it was interesting as an American abroad to hear how Europeans explain that assassination attempt, the one that resulted in in Mr. Brady being shot and then later this organization being created. And it was one that European said, well of course that's gonna happen. You've got a gun slinger as a president, and you guys are a violent nation. And for a kid who grew up in the suburbs of Detroit like that, that's not how I viewed my country. And I think that that always stuck with me. And then later I went to college in in Washington, D. C. at American University. And we had one of our professors call in someone from I think it was Handgun Control Inc at the time, which I think became Brady. And then there was some, like NRA-type person and I remember to this day just very vividly that the person from Handgun Control brought in that iconic image of a, at the time it was a revolver, and the way that America compared to other countries with respect to how many people had died with gun violence. And and when I was working at ATF, ah, former employees of Brady, John Shanks. I told him this story and he took off his wall, a framed copy of this, and I keep it to this day, it's very instrumental. So it's interesting to see how little things become part of who you are and then coming out of ATF, I was very frustrated that clearly our government was purposely withholding information from the public about the true nature of gun violence, and it had made it illegal for me to share data that would not harm investigations but would inform the public about you know, what types of guns were most commonly used in crime. And how were they getting to the crime scene um? People know this is the Tiahrt amendment, and that just really conflicted me with the oath I took to observe the rule of law and to serve something greater than a political interest. It was some pledge I took to truth, and so I had the advantage of I was 46 years old. I started ATF at 21 and I could retire. And when I retired, I had an opportunity to go work for Mayors Against Illegal Guns, which for the first time allowed me to speak truth to power about this and then later, after a couple other jobs, I've now been serving at Giffords, where it's nice to have a place where my only requirement every day is to tell the truth and tell it in an impactful and understandable way to the public.
JJ:
12:12
Can you expand a little bit on why it was illegal for you to share information. I think that that's something I mean immediately makes my little antenna perk up.
David Chipman:
12:22
So sure, during the Clinton administration, a lot of funds for the first time were used to provide resource to ATF to collect data regarding the recovery of crime guns through trace data so that we at ATF and the public could better understand, like, how are all these guns showing up in the hands of kids who can't lawfully buy them and in areas where their strict gun right regulations? Like how is this happening? And so, for the first time ATF had the resources to publicly ensure that every crime gun was traced and that this information was made public. Once this was made public trial attorneys, people who sue people, started using this data as the basis of lawsuits that for the first time began to hold gun dealers accountable and the industry itself. Well, that was in an enormous threat, and at that time, in contrast to what happened with the tobacco industry, which where data lead to, you know, a more positive outcome. The power of the gun lobby at that time resulted in the opposite, where ATF by law could no longer share this data. And so the fact that we have bad crime gun data isn't accidental, it's not a lack of resources--it is by design. It's purposeful with the intended purpose to be: well we can't suffer consequences from how guns end up in crime, if the public or advocates can't point to data that explains it. And so it sounds sort of wonky, like, oh, data. Like what could that inform us? I'm just telling you that, you know, a couple of decades ago, we were on the brink of having data turned the course in the gun violence movement because the truth would have been right in front of everyone. And instead the gun industry ensured that that gun data would be covered up. And it remains so today.
Christian Heyne:
14:20
Yeah, I mean, it is a direct gift, to the gun industry. And so often, you know, the National Rifle Association and others, especially their leadership who have gotten more and more extreme try to separate themselves and say they don't, you know, they speak for gun owners, you know, they speak for individual rights. But here you have a series, these tiahrt amendments. It was it was even just it's not even just one block. They kept on putting more bricks on that wall to make sure that this information wasn't getting out. And it's been incredibly detrimental to our ability to ultimately see who is profiting off of, you know, especially communities of color being disproportionately killed by gun violence. You know, we whenever we start talking about background checks or other things we hear from the other side, you're talking about illegal guns, you're talking about illegal guns. But we don't even have the ability to dissect and understand how guns are leaving manufacturers and then flooding our streets. We know from reports, you know, from the ATF, from the information we do have, right, and correct me if I'm wrong, that a majority of gun dealers are very responsible, right that a majority of gun dealers don't have crime guns traced back to them about 90% according to a report from 2003.
David Chipman:
15:39
Yah, I just point out like that's interesting, too, Like the best data that advocates have today is based on a study when ATF could use researchers. David Kennedy, Anthony Braga, these were people that were embedded in ATF, using the data to speak the truth. Whatever it was, some things were surprising to us. Others confirmed notions. I hope if David Chipman did his job at ATF, that data is a little better because we were using the same data internally to like target, who were the worst of the worst dealers? And I can't say that 80 s done that with precision. There have probably been times when they do it better than not. But I would hope that that data that we use is better or it's a real failure. It would be shocking to me to do that same study identically today and not have those numbers slightly different. But they might be, we don't know.
JJ:
16:30
Well, and I think we have to just sort of be honest and address the elephant in the room here, which is that there's a racial equity problem here, too, not just in the data, but in the way that gun violence plays out in the way that, like gun violence prevention, talks even internally.
Christian Heyne:
16:45
Right. What you're describing with these tiahrt that's so important with the tiahrt amendments and repealing that and getting the information for ATF is, there's also a supply side here problem right? Like who are, rather than incarcerating the young men at the very end of this equation, that are getting access to these weapons. How do we go after the people who are profiting off of those guns flooding into those streets to begin with?
David Chipman:
17:06
Yah and not just in the United States. The shot show is going on now in Las Vegas, which for advocates I remember the first time I walked into shot show. I had to man a booth there for ATF, which was always interesting to stand up for days and have people yell at you. But it was good training so I could handle Christian today. You know, I think that the biggest agenda item for shot show this year and they're providing training to manufacturers and dealers is how new export laws will allow them to export more guns out of the United States. We see adjacent to us, we're not being good neighbors in Mexico, homicide rates with guns or at the highest level ever, it's exploding in Canada as well. That isn't a coincidence. It is the necessary consequence of more guns flowing from the United States legally and illegally to places that have not faced this before. So oftentimes, in our policy talk, we talk about what's best for Americans. But, you know, we have an outsized role in the entire world and you know, it would be good for us to to examine that as well. When it comes to gun violence, community violence, urban gun violence, gun violence in our biggest cities, I I see that is, is one bucket of many buckets that together is, a bigger picture of the entire gun violence problem. You know, I was on the front lines of this. So my view is this is that there are certain people, a very small minority who are determined, career active shooters who police need to take off the streets. That being said, these people are far different than people getting arrested for nonviolent drug crimes, things that people who easily fall into the policing net who are easier to catch than the shooters. I always remind my progressive friends that when we talk about over policing, I think a better term is like policing the stuff you'd want policed in your neighborhood. And having worked in Detroit and Flint and Texas and Tidewater, Virginia, I have never worked in a community that didn't want me to take off the person and put him in jail who's shooting up their block. It's all this other stuff. How do we do it? Do we do it by throwing a big net down and treating everyone like criminals? Or is it like we're going after a person? We know who's violent and take that single person off? And so I hope with technologies like ShotSpotter like NIBIN that connects bullet casings that police can be much smarter and more proactive than sort of lazy and reactive. I think that the thing that police owe the public, is to remember that they're public servants, they serve the needs of the public. When I came on at ATF, it was clear that my job was to risk my life so that someone else could not be harmed. That became even more clear when I was trained and had to work with Secret Service where it was, no, you have to allow yourself to be shot so someone else doesn't get shot. And so, like, that was always my perspective. I had signed up for this. This was my way to serve and I think that there are elements of police culture that have prioritized the survival of the police officer over the community they service. And that gets into a dangerous place, therefore, policing for what's best for policing, we've left that link between service, and so I think that that's an important narrative, that we understand the sacrifice of police, I certainly did and that their job is to make the community safe.
JJ:
20:46
I think the issue with that is, though, that you hear police say that there is absolutely no way for them to be safe now on the streets because they have such a legitimate fear of being outgunned that criminals have have much more firepower than they do. Do you think that that's like a legitimate fear or?  
David Chipman:
21:02
Yeah, I think that interesting if you look back at the data, there have been times in American history where many more police officers were getting killed in the line of duty, certainly during the drug wars. If you look at ATF's wall of people who have been killed in the line of duty, 80% of those died in prohibition. So I don't think it could be argued that now is the most violent time for police. That being said, the firearms that police face today are so much more lethal we have handguns now that routinely fire rifle rounds that can defeat police body armor. So there is no question that policing tactics have had to change in order to face the weaponry out there. You know. The Saturday Night Special which was the type of gun used to shoot, you know, Mr. Brady and the president, the only reason any of these people even survived was because the gun was actually a piece of garbage. That the guns used today, and why we see the horrific body counts and mass shootings, is that the design of these weapons--if you're hit, you're going to die. I mean, these are weapons of war, right? Like and so I think that that's the biggest difference. But also, you know, the culture of policing what's hard is is like, do we just have a better understanding of police culture? Has police culture always been this way? Like I don't know. I don't think I'm a good commentator to know. Is anything really different? The thing I'm sure that's different is the weaponry. I know what's different too, is the tactics. You know, I think that progressive chiefs around the around the country now understand that the only way they're going to be effective as a department is to regain the trust of communities and to work together in this complex problem. People want to be served with good public safety. They do not want to be policed. That's a whole thing. I would imagine any one of your listeners imagine that you want the same policing that everyone in this country does no matter where you live. And that is: hey, I want to be safe. And if a gun is fired, I want cops to show up and investigate it. And right now, most shootings, as long as someone isn't hit, are never investigated. They're never reported, and communities of color just figured the police know about and they don't care. They care more about their partner than their neighbor,  
Christian Heyne:
23:31
Right. It can't be adversarial. We were in this together. We should be working towards the solutions together, right? Well, and I think that what's interesting as a response to some of what you're laying out, too, is that our technology has had to catch up with it as well, right? And you mentioned ShotSpotter earlier. Can you explain to our listeners what that is.
David Chipman:
23:51
Yeah and this was a mind blowing experience for me because I think one of the things when you were in law enforcement you are used to having the best information. You're on the front lines, you have informants, your there when someone gets shot, you think you know what's going on and there's there's sort of a confidence that's reinforced, like, hey, I didn't get shot today, I must be really smart at what I do right? And I had the opportunity to work for ShotSpotter for a number of years. And ShotSpotter is a technology where sensors are set up in a city and they are able to triangulate the sound of illegal gun fire and within 30 seconds, send that data to police with a dot on a map on an iPhone. So this is technology that's now in 100 cities. It's been for years in D. C., Chicago, New York, big cities, you would understand. And one of the most interesting data points revealed by ShotSpotter is that only one in every five shootings detected by ShotSpotter, no matter how many rounds are fired is ever reported to police. So imagine if you're in a community were four out of five shootings the cops don't even come. Imagine if your fire department only came to one out of four burning buildings, and you would necessarily think that the government doesn't care about you. Especially when you watch the news, and in suburban and white communities if a gun is fired there are scores of police always resp--
JJ:
25:16
But to play law enforcement advocate. s that because no one's calling? No one's telling them.  
David Chipman:
25:20
Yeah and so that's interesting, like, do we complain to police about the fact that, um, you know, they aren't doing enough work to catch speeders and drunk drivers like they do that work. They don't wait till the public gets a call from someone about speeding. Right? Like this is all a narrative that governments largely don't want to own the responsibility of knowing how much gunfire there is and having to respond to it. So even when data is accessible, we have to acknowledged that some people don't want it. And so I think that this is a big, you know, change in the debate, and we have to understand that if you were in a community where there's constant gunfire and this gunfire leads to your neighbors actually being killed, every incident of gunfire is is a scary event until you get numb. And the data that ShotSpotter has is that there are 100 criminal illegal shootings for every case where someone's hit. So imagine that we know the data of how many people are killed with guns, how many are shot with guns. And we all are like, wow, that's insane! It's, 100x worse than that. And so I think that's a reality that technology has introduced. And we need to deal with that. I think we all have to own that. I know it's progressives, we we always feel like we're bathed in the truth. But you know, when you have new areas that are getting better, um, the fact that actually they're still very violent is an inconvenient truth that even I would say liberals and progressives don't want widely circulated. And so, you know, with this data, once it becomes public, if you know it, you own it. And so this is just a different version of tiarht. So some cities have said we want to know the truth, we're willing to deal with it in Chicago. I don't think it's accidental that they put ShotSpotter in 100 miles of the city square miles of the city. And over the last couple years, you now for the first time in a long time, see gun violence going down, they decided we're gonna own this problem. And we're gonna do use this data as sort of a barometer of success. So ShotSpotter is just if you're dealing with global warming, here is this technological measurement of how hot it's getting. And if you want to prevent gun violence, I don't know how you measure your success without ShotSpotter, hopefully to have fewer shootings.
JJ:
27:44
It's also it's it's so interesting to me too, I think sort of on the if you know it, you own it avenue how little practical information there is out there. Like how people even get access than to what you do if you hear a gunshot go off in your neighborhood or what you do if you find a gun or what you do, if you have a gun, you don't want any more?  
David Chipman:
28:03
And this is when we come across the fact and I had the opportunity to work in Tidewater, Virginia, Michigan, Texas we're an enormous nation, okay? And so, especially with the case of firearms, there really are no norms. So in Detroit, when we got a crime gun, we melted it down and we did our patriotic duty in Detroit. Which was it donated metal to the auto industry, right? Like so, everyone has their norms. In some states, melting a gun would be considered like abortion or murder, and I'm not overstating that like the taking a gun and destroying it when it had a useful purpose would be horrific. And that in some states police are forbidden from destroying crime guns. They must sell them. So I I joined law enforcement in the late eighties, and at that time old agents were still describing that their old destruction area was they would throw them off a bridge like like so like like I mean, like, we've come a whole long way. But I mean, don't over assume. But I think more departments are are trying to routinely dispose of guns. And today, you know, I think the norm is that even if they aren't going to destroy them, they at least send them back to a licensed gun dealer so that you would know that someone buying that gun would have to go through a background check. But there's some that, you know, just treat it like any other property and it's auctioned off and, yeah, it's interesting.
JJ:
29:35
How do we get then, you know, how do we get these norms to change? Not just around guns, but gun violence prevention. What do we say to people?
David Chipman:
29:44
How can we not value human life more? I guess I come out of my ATF career feeling that gun violence is the social justice issue of my generation and the fact that we allow this gun violence to exist in communities of color but would never allow it in the suburbs that I've been blessed to live shows everything we know, um, need to know about the fact that we still don't treat everyone equally because we don't have the same likelihood of getting shot and killed. And that's where I get I get, my outrage is that I know we can prevent gun violence. How do I know it? We've prevented it in airports. We've prevented it in ATF headquarters. We've prevented it in every major sporting thing. This is just a question of determination and what we're willing to do! And the reality is, is the people up until today, even young white kids in school, the the outrage over that has not eclipsed the benefit, um, political financial to sell these unregulated weapons of war that help people kill people more efficiently. But we're all these are all human lives, and it doesn't get equal coverage. So I think everyone has a responsibility into this. But we have to just acknowledge this comes from a place until we all believe that all of our lives are valued equally. Our response to that loss of law life will be inequitable.
Christian Heyne:
31:29
Yeah, there's a there's a phrase we use here a lot that where you live should not determine if you live. And I think we need to do better to make sure that we are advocating not just for the victims and individuals who are impacted, who we see on TV, but for everybody.
JJ:
31:49
David, this has just been amazing. I feel like I need you to come back for 18 podcasts, maybe just move in here and live in the studio. But for our final question, then, since we're rapidly running out of time, I'm gonna ask you an unfair question. Let's say that you're in an elevator with a member of the public who knows nothing about gun violence. What do you say to them? To tell them what you think is the most important thing about gun violence and gun violence prevention.
David Chipman:
32:14
Gun laws save lives. So the first thing we have to do is we have to standardize those life saving measures across the board, but two we also have to change the culture of guns. Winning a gunfight is not a public policy winner. I for 25 years avoided that at all costs. So this narrative that somehow the presence of the gun is going to save the day is absolutely wrong. And anyone who's a trained operator knows it. And so, like, I think we have to do two things. We have to, you know, do what we know works. We have to elect people willing to do it like we've done here in Virginia, and we have done in the U. S. House of Representatives. But we also have to create safe places for gun owners to hold other gun owners responsible. Those idiots who are trying to bring guns through security at the airport because they don't even remember they're carrying them. People throw guns in the car so that they're stolen and used in crime, that's unacceptable. And it takes fellow gun owners to call that out. So those are the things that I would do in that elevator that apparently just went 32 floors.
JJ:
33:21
No, it's okay. And then so what? What's something then that may be like our listeners can do to either, hold the gun, lobby accountable or hold their elected officials accountable or hold local law enforcement accountable? What's something that they can do?
David Chipman:
33:31
Two things, vote for people who make this gun violence a priority through legislative changes and then, when elected, hold those people accountable, right? Like so like, don't don't look at this like is a democratic-republican thing. Hold people who want power accountable to make them lay out what they're gonna do. And once they gain your trust in that power, make them do those things. Don't let them backtrack. So it's a twofold thing. And so I think that as more Democrats get in control, we should be hopeful. And now we need to hold those Democrats who have control accountable to do the things you promised.
Christian Heyne:
34:07
Elections matter people.
JJ:
34:10
So I wasn't quite ready to add, you know, preparing for a zombie apocalypse to my to do list. But according to some folks, I should be, and I should be doing that by buying a special zombie firearm for the occasion. So different guns sellers have been making a lot of money by marketing to, you know, A) rabid fans of the walking dead and, you know, B those that fear the end of the world for a while now, by banking on fear, a lot of sellers have marketed shotguns, including automatics, as being a versatile, necessary weapon to buy and hold on to. To quote one site that ranks ideal zombie weapons quote stocking up a variety of shot can serve many purposes from decapitating zeds to alerting rescuers of your position. A shotgun also makes an effective weapon for an unskilled member of your party and one that will work well for defensive purposes.  End quote. Now what's unbelievable and scary about this? Well, not just that they reference zeds for zombies is that the shotgun models suggested are listed that way because they can easily manage to kill a zombie. Which again, I would like to point out, are not real. And they can kill them by a head shot, which can quote again, shred brain tissue beyond the critical mass required for a zombie to remain active. End quote. And you know, what can a gun like that do to people? I don't want to find out.  
JJ:
35:35
So, sadly, our new section today shows exactly what firearms can do to people. On our first new story, Lorenzo Matthews, who was 11 and his brother, who was 12 year old Michael Smith, were wounded in a shooting at a Chicago East Garfield Park barbershop when two gunmen sprayed gunfire from outside. About 30 people, including a toddler, were inside the shop at the time. Then, in the first reported FBI mass shooting of 2020 a Utah teenager shot and killed four of his family members and left another wounded. Among those killed were the alleged mother, whose age 52 and her Children, 15 year old Alexis, 14 year old Matthew and 12 year old Milan. The teenagers father, 50 was also shot and is expected to survive. The town in Utah that only has about 11,000 people held a prayer vigil on Monday night, which was attended by hundreds of residents. Now this certainly wasn't the only large scale shooting to make headlines. Eight people were shot in Seattle on Wednesday, and one of them died from their injuries. The shooting happened in downtown Seattle, around Third Avenue and Pine Street, which apparently is an area that's seen a lot of gun violence recently. And this happened during the evening commute, when there were lots of people out and about. Victims of the shooting included a nine year old boy. Witnesses of the shooting reported, you know, a huge volley of gunfire and panicked people running for cover anywhere they could find. That said, I do wanna end on a positive note. I like to try to end on a positive note cause I feel like I really bum people out all the time in my life and on this podcast. So for a positive note for the podcast, the Virginia House of Delegates Public Safety Committee past seven common sense gun violence prevention bills out of committee for consideration by the full House of delegates. This is huge because this action followed a week of heightened scrutiny of Virginia's gun safety laws and its proposed legislation after a protest on Martin Luther King Jr Day that included a lot of hateful rhetoric and some participation of white supremacist, militia and out of state groups. Groups that I would like to point out don't represent the majority views of Virginia gun owners and voters. These bills show that the Virginia House of Delegates Public Safety Committee is not going to be deterred. The bills do a variety of common sense measures, which is included but not limited to, you know, enacting universal background check bill for all private sales and transfers with, you know, some exceptions, creating an extreme risk protective order sometimes called an extreme risk law or a red flag law in the state of Virginia, and would update Virginia's Child Access Prevention Law, which protects more children and teens by creating really meaningful deterrents to ensure that children are not in the position to access unsecured firearms. So good news.  
JJ:
38:22
Thanks for listening. As always, Brady's life saving work in Congress, the courts and communities across the country is made possible thanks to you for more information on Brady or how to get involved in the fight against gun violence, please like and subscribe to the podcast. Get in touch with us at BradyUnited.org or on social, @BradyBuzz. Be brave and remember, take action, not sides.
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