“The father of the gunman who killed nine people at a community college here called on the nation to change its gun laws on Saturday, saying the massacre ‘would not have happened’ if his son had not been able to buy so many handguns and rifles,” as the New York Times is reporting.
“’How was he able to compile that kind of arsenal?’ the father, Ian Mercer, said in an interview with CNN at his home in Tarzana, Calif. He said he had no idea that his son owned more than a dozen firearms.
“His comments came as officials here confirmed that the gunman, Christopher Harper-Mercer, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound after exchanging fire with police officers who responded to the shooting at Umpqua Community College on Thursday morning.
(Criminal histories and documented mental health problems did not prevent at least eight of the gunmen in 14 recent mass shootings from obtaining their weapons).
“Adding a raw, personal voice to the debate over gun control in the wake of this latest mass shooting, he said the United States needed to tighten gun laws.
“’It has to change,’ he said. ‘How can it not? Even people that believe in the right to bear arms, what right do you have to take someone’s life?’ He would not discuss his son’s mental health issues, deferring to the police investigation. ‘Obviously, someone who goes and kills nine people has to have some kind of issue,’ he said.
“Standing on his lawn, Mr. Mercer said the shooting had devastated his family. ‘But we’re not alone in this,’ he said. ‘My heart goes out to all the families that were affected by this.’”
The rest of the article is here.