The shooting death of Charles Albert Poland Jr. and the kidnapping of a young boy named Ethan were completely preventable. There is no way Jimmy Lee Dykes should have been permitted to possess firearms:
Mr. Dykes, who has lived in a travel trailer here for about two years, has a troubled past, including arrests on charges connected to drugs, drunken driving and, in Florida in 1995, unlawful display of a firearm. On Wednesday he was due in court in this county, accused of shooting at a neighbor in a dispute over driving on his property.Everyone who knew Dykes knew he was bad news.
Neighbors of Mr. Dykes generally kept their distance, which he made easy. He frequently made violent threats to anyone who wandered onto his property, once even beating a neighbors’ dog to death with a lead pipe. He would sometimes sit watching and holding a rifle when young children played in a nearby yard. Late into the night he would dig in the backyard of his travel trailer or patrol his property with a flashlight and a long gun.Now Poland is heroically dead, Dykes has been justifiably killed by the FBI, and Ethan has been rescued.
But Alabama won't rethink its gun laws, and the NRA won't rethink its crazy, extremist position against closing the gun show and private sale loopholes in the miserable tatter of current background check law.
Click image for full Garry Trudeau/Doonesbury cartoon.