During a July 16 nighttime appearance of Al Jazeera’s America Tonight, Colonel Gary Anderson, USMC (Ret.), said the Chattanooga attack is a reminder that Americans need to be armed because an armed citizenry “is probably the only way you can truly deter the kinds of things that we saw in the church in Charleston and that we saw… in Chattanooga.”
Col. Anderson said that if he were in charge, he “would advocate that every shop owner in America be required to not only have a gun, but know how to use it in self-defense.” He suggested that if others plan to carry out attacks like the one in Chattanooga, the way to stop them is to be sure they meet armed resistance.
Al Jazeera’s Joie Chen then mentioned that early findings in the Chattanooga investigation showed alleged gunman Mohammad Youssef Abdulazeez “was not on the FBI’s radar” and had nothing in his past that would make passing a background check for a gun problematic.
Col. Anderson responded by saying he concurred—that nothing he had learned about Abdulazeez would have prevented him from passing a background check—and he said that this is the very reason gun control is not the answer to the heinous shooting. Rather, gun ownership is.
Col. Anderson said:
I don’t think any of the proposed gun control in this country is going to do any good whatsoever in stopping [these kinds of attacks]. I think the only deterrent is somebody shooting back at you. I’ve believed that for a long time.
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