01/13 - Newtown: A Louisiana Perspective

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When a lone shooter took the lives of 20 children and 6 adults at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, his actions started a national conversation about the issues of gun control and treatment of the mentally ill. President Obama has vowed to make reducing gun violence a “central issue” of his second term and has created a task force to help prevent a future Newtown-style massacre. Members of Congress have begun a dialogue about mental health and privacy issues.

Where does Louisiana stand in this national discussion on guns and mental health? Louisiana voters recently passed a state constitutional amendment making its citizens’ right to bear arms, the strongest in the nation. How would national gun control proposals affect the state’s new “strict scrutiny” standard?

Medicaid provides about half of state mental health budgets, but Governor Jindal is opposed to expanding the program. And budget cuts have hit mental health care services and facilities statewide. Will reduced funding of mental health services put a vulnerable population at further risk of harming themselves or others?

Louisiana Public Square explores the answers to these questions and more on “Newtown: A Louisiana Perspective” airing Wednesday, January 23rd at 7 p.m. on LPB HD. (Taping Tuesday, January 22nd.)

This survey is in regard to recent mass shootings that are affecting the country.

This survey has no policy agenda, or ultimate goal. We are only interested in your opinion.
1. Are you a registered gun owner?
2. Are you a member of the National Rifle Association (NRA)?
3. What is your general opinion about the NRA?
4. Do you think current gun control laws go too far, not far enough, or are about right?
5. Would you consider a ban on assault weapons?
6. Would you consider a law limiting the purchase of high capacity magazines?
7. Would you consider a law banning armor piercing rounds?
8. Would you consider a law requiring a mental health background check prior to purchasing a gun?
9. How much do you agree or disagree with the following statement: “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.”
10. How much do you agree or disagree with the following statement: “We can help prevent gun violence by increasing access to mental health services.”
11. 11. Which do you think is MOST to blame for gun violence, in particular mass shootings? Please choose only one.
12. In your opinion, what is the primary reason a mass shooter commits violence? Please choose only one.
13. What do you think would help reduce mass shootings such as the Sandyhook Elementary school shooting?
14. Of the following options, which do you think would potentially protect children in school from mass shootings?
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