The end of Jonesville Mine Road near Sutton is a fairly notorious partying, four-wheeling and target shooting area. It’s not a formal shooting range; it’s a dirt berm, a whole lot of empty beer cans, empty shell casings and and too many drunken, gun-toting empty-headed partiers. 30-year old Army veteran Adam C. Malaby was there, reportedly stepped in front of a “target shooter” and now he’s dead.
We don’t know any details. But there are so many things wrong with this incident that it is hard to know where to start. Someone said Malaby stepped in to someone else’s line of fire while trying to get a photograph of the shooter.
KTVA reports that James Meyers, who lives nearby, said he’s gotten used to some of the noise.
The ricochet bullets and the explosions you don’t really get used to; makes me nervous every time. [F]igured it was only a matter of time. With all that goes on up there, so many people shooting and so many indiscriminate directions without really any rules or guidelines.
There’s no official report of whether alcohol was involved here, but WC would give long odds it was. Alcohol and firearms don’t mix, any more than alcohol and automobiles. We’ve criminalized DUIs, but in the twisted, boolean logic of ammosexuals, any regulation of firearms, any regulation at all, is taking away their guns. No one thinks driver’s licenses, mandatory auto insurance or limits on how you can drive “takes away your car.” No one thinks regulation of any other constitutional right “takes away a constitutional right.” But because of the absolutist position taken by the NRA and the gun lovers, we have about 33,000 people a year killed by firearms. The debate should not be boolean; it’s not either/or, any more than regulating the use of automobiles is either/or. The absolutism only increases the body count.
WC owns firearms. WC has been trained in using firearms. It is inexcusable that the unnamed shooter pulled the trigger when there was even a chance that Malaby would step in the line of fire. If this accident happened with an automobile, the D.A. would be considering negligent manslaughter charges, particularly if the shooter was intoxicated. But this involved a firearm and, hey, guns don’t kill people…
The comments to the KTVA report read as a complete rehash of the entrenched, hyperbolic positions in this tired debate. There are 33,000 reasons a year why each side should be willing to compromise. Calling Malaby “stupid” assumes a lot of things we don’t know. Calling it “murder” assumes even more things we don’t now.
But what we do know is that a young man’s life has pointlessly snuffed out. Everything in Malaby’s family has changed. But nothing in the position of any party to the rhetoric on gun control will change.