The mass shooting on Saturday at an outdoor mall in Allen, TX, is the 199th mass shooting of 2023. Eight people died, including at least one child, and seven more were injured after a gunman opened fire at the Allen Premium Outlets.
The gunman was a 33 year old male, who, according to reports, was discharged from the Army in 2008 over mental health concerns. A police officer who was on at the mall responding to an unrelated call shot and killed the perpetrator. The motive is still unknown, but authorities are investigating whether the shooter, who was Hispanic, had neo-Nazi sympathies based on a patch he was wearing that read RWDS. It is believed to stand for ‘Right Wing Death Squad.’
Megyn opened Monday’s show by addressing the tragedy. “I don’t know about you but I’m sick, sick, sick of opening up Twitter or watching the news to learn there’s been yet another mass shooting in America,” she said. “Sick of it.” She then reflected on the knee-jerk reaction of what she called “gun control zealots” who offer the same ‘solutions’ in the aftermath of every mass shooting and why the conversation must move from guns to mental health if there is any hope of thwarting future violence.
Why Gun Control Doesn’t Work
In the aftermath of the shooting, it took virtually no time at all for the talking heads to start exhorting the need for new gun control legislation. Their arguments, Megyn said, are not persuasive. “I have hosted countless debates [see: episode 248], and I have been as open-minded as anyone in this country to a possible change in laws that might diminish the chances of more of these happening,” she shared. “I am not some huge Second Amendment person and I am not blind to possible change on either side, but nothing has worked to stop these shootings and nothing proposed by these gun control advocates will work.”
Megyn likened restricting firearm access in the United States to “getting alligators out of the Everglades, or tarantulas out of Mexico, or sharks out of the ocean” – “it’s not going to happen.” As she explained, “gun control zealots” need to “stop hijacking the debate” because “we are not getting guns out of America” and “it’s time to focus on other remedies.”
According to the National Firearm Industry Trade Association, there are 434 million guns in America. Some 70 percent of those are semi-automatic guns, which amounts to over 300 million. And there are about 20 million of “those AR-15s the left is desperate to ban,” Megyn noted. “We could ban AR-15s tomorrow and we would still have 300 million semi-automatic guns here – just about one for every person in America,” she added.
From 1994 to 2004, there was a so-called “assault weapons ban” in America. Based on the government’s own findings, it did not work as intended. “The DOJ’s own study of the ban concluded it did not reduce gun violence,” Megyn said. “Two other studies done more recently in 2020 concluded the same.” The Department of Justice found that the decline in the use of “assault weapons” was offset by steady or rising use of other guns. “Duh, it’s a free and vast country,” Megyn exclaimed. “We are going to have people who want to kill – sometimes on a mass scale.”
The Reality of Mass Casualty Events
Semi-automatic rifles were used in what Megyn called “high profile, terrible mass shootings” from Sandy Hook to Las Vegas. But, as she explained, handguns are “the most common weapon in America” and are “just as deadly as the rifles gun control advocates” want banned. “The deadliest school shooting of all at Virginia Tech was committed entirely with semi-automatic pistols,” she shared. “Pistols, meaning handguns that fire one bullet per one trigger squeeze – that’s what we mean by ‘semi-automatic pistol.’”
But guns aren’t the only weapons involved in mass casualty events. “Sometimes they use cars,” Megyn said. “We saw that in Texas too yesterday – a second mass event when a Hispanic man mowed down and killed the same number of people killed in that mass shooting at the mall, most of whom were migrants, outside of a migrant facility.” In 2021, six people died when a man intentionally drove into the Christmas parade in Waukesha, WI. And then there were the homemade bombs that killed three and injured over 200 near the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon.
All of this is to say, you could ban semi-automatic rifles tomorrow, and “there’d still be 300 million pistols just like the AR-15 in America,” Megyn noted. “We’re not getting rid of these guns.” Moreover, it wouldn’t end the bloodshed. “Murderers find a way,” she continued. “They ignored the multitude of gun laws already on the books – that’s why we’ve seen so many mass shootings not just in states like Texas, but in blue states like New York and Connecticut and California.”
America’s Mental Health Crisis
The legislation proposed in the aftermath of these mass shootings rarely if ever would have done anything to prevent the tragedy. If that’s the case, “why are we deluding ourselves,” Megyn asked. “I think it’s because people get desperate and so upset by the mass shootings, as do I – trust me, I have three young children – and they just look for something to blame.”
Megyn said it is time to stop focusing on guns and start focusing on the mental health of the people who perpetrate these crimes. “I’ve said it before and I will say it again: What we need more than anything is better mental health services in America,” she shared. That would include “better facilities for the mentally unwell and insane,” “a new kind of institution that is as secure as a prison but that could provide humane conditions for those deemed to be a threat,” and “a reasonable review panel to protect said person’s civil liberties with appropriate reviews.”
While Megyn admitted “it won’t solve” the problem, she believes “it actually would help” because there is currently no recourse for people who think someone they know might be a threat. “Right now, if you know your kid is a sociopath… and you suspect your child may be the next mass shooter… there’s nothing to do with your kid,” she explained. Psychiatrists “will tell you they cannot counsel someone out of sociopathy or psychopathy,” she continued. And, on the other side, “law enforcement will tell you they can’t lock somebody up who hasn’t committed a crime” because “the standard for psychiatric institutionalization is too high.”
With that in mind, “it’s time to shame the gun control zealots for stopping any other reasonable debates around these shootings,” Megyn said. “I will continue starting discussions about other remedies in the wake of these shootings… that we at least stand a chance of reducing these mass events.”
Remembering the Victims
Finally, Megyn emphasized that now is not the time to take faith and empathy out of the equation. “I will offer my thoughts and prayers – stop trying to shame me for doing that,” she shared. “We need God in those moments more than any other and, just because you’re not part of the gun control cult, doesn’t make it inappropriate.”
Ultimately, “you never want to forget the families,” Megyn concluded. “And you never want to forget the victims.”
You can check out the full show by tuning in to episode 545 on YouTube, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you like to listen. And don’t forget that you can catch The Megyn Kelly Show live on SiriusXM’s Triumph (channel 111) weekdays from 12pm to 2pm ET.