Janet Napolitano: Santa Barbara Rampage Almost Impossible to Predict, Prevent

On Saturday, University of California President Janet Napolitano made a statement about the mass shooting Friday near the UC Santa Barbara that was not only factual but flew in the face of those willing to use the massacre as fodder for their gun-control arguments. Napolitano said the shooting was "almost the kind of event that's impossible to prevent and impossible to predict."

The gunman killed six people and wounded seven others; some of the victims were UCSB students.

Napolitano left her post as Secretary of Homeland Security to move to her job as chief of the UC system in September. She added Saturday that she was "shocked and deeply saddened" by the incident and was sending thoughts and prayers "to the victims of this tragedy, their families and the entire Santa Barbara community." She continued that she would help UCSB with problems arising from the incident that affected students and families.

Napolitano may have a different response if the gunman in the UCSB massacre turns out to have conservative views; in April 2009, as Secretary of Homeland Security, Napolitano released a report warning of firearms restriction catalyzing a surge in the members of “rightwing extremists.” The report said:

Proposed imposition of firearms restrictions and weapons bans likely would attract new members into the ranks of rightwing extremist groups, as well as potentially spur some of them to begin planning and training for violence against the government.  

The report also stated that the “high volume” of purchases and “stockpiling of weapons and ammunition by rightwing extremists in anticipation of restrictions” in the U.S. had become “a primary concern” for law enforcement.


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