Orlando shootings likely to impact security at theme parks

Posted Sunday, June 12, 2016 10:27 PM | Contributed by Jeff

Law enforcement was extra-watchful at theme parks Sunday after a mass shooting at an Orlando nightclub, and tourism experts expect tighter security and fewer visitors in the tragedy's wake. Theme parks already know Orlando holds potential for a terrorist attack or a mass shooting because of its high profile. After last year's deadly terror attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, Calif., the attractions beefed up security significantly.

Read more from The Orlando Sentinel.

Monday, June 13, 2016 4:38 PM
Vater's avatar

Jeff said:

Vater said:
The US constitution protects the right of citizens to bear arms to defend themselves from a threat...

Yes, I think most rational people will concede that. But as I've said once already, the courts did not take a constitutional issue with the 1994 ban on assault weapons.

There are many people I know who I would otherwise consider rational, yet have no idea the true purpose of the 2nd amendment (which you left out of my quote). And the courts not taking issue with the 1994 assault weapons ban, to me, is another example of a few fallible men making a poor decision that affects our rights. It's not like that's never happened before. The ban itself was entirely irrational based on its asinine definition of what constitutes an "assault" weapon:

For example, a semiautomatic rifle fell under the term “semiautomatic assault weapon” if it had the ability to accept a detachable magazine and possessed two of the following five features: (1) a folding or telescopic stock; (2) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon; (3) a bayonet mount; (4) a flash suppressor or threaded barrel designed to accommodate a flash suppressor; or (5) a grenade launcher. See Former 18 U.S.C. §921(a)(30)(B).

And don't forget the magazines:

The act also made it unlawful to transfer and possess large capacity ammunition feeding devices (LCAFD).30 An LCAFD was defined as “any magazine, belt, drum, feed strip, or similar device manufactured after the date [of the act] that has the capacity of, or that can be readily restored or converted to accept, more than 10 rounds of ammunition.”

So if I had a semiautomatic (single trigger pull = single shot fired) rifle with a telescopic stock and pistol grip, I had an illegal "assault" weapon. But if I removed the grip? Perfectly legal.

Last edited by Vater, Monday, June 13, 2016 4:40 PM
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Monday, June 13, 2016 5:14 PM
Jeff's avatar

Are you arguing that an imperfect law, which could have been revised, was reason to simply do nothing? Do you know if a lobbyist, understanding exactly your point, had that language inserted? It wouldn't surprise me.

sirloindude said:

Jeff, it isn't a matter of us getting to decide what the right problem is. However, we always harp on guns and nobody ever seems to address the fact that it takes a human finger to pull the trigger.

This is 100% untrue. I say it every time the issue arises, and even the scary Congresscritters do. That's why any proposed legislation tends to approach it from many angles, limiting the kind and type of weapon, requiring background checks, etc. I'll say it a third time in this thread: I conceded that it's a complex issue without a single cause and effect relationship.

Richard Bannister said:

So it's pure coincidence that the country with the highest percentage of gun ownership anywhere sees the most shootings...?

No one ever has an answer for this, unless that it's a complex problem without a single cause and effect relationship.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

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Monday, June 13, 2016 5:22 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

Richard Bannister said:

Vater said:
I would argue that those of us who resist "common-sense" gun laws see them as not containing a whole lot of common sense at all.

To that, I just say this:

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-australia-guns-idUSKCN0XP0HG

How often is Australia the target of terror attacks?


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Monday, June 13, 2016 5:37 PM
sirloindude's avatar

I don't think it's coincidental at all, Richard. Statistically speaking, the more guns there are, the more deaths involving them will occur. I would take you back to some of my stats earlier, though, which point out that some parts of this country with far lower gun ownership percentages have far higher violence ratios than those with high ownership percentages. Texas wasn't even the best example to support my case, but I picked it because it's one of the more metropolitan states. Arkansas just didn't seem like the most exciting example. ;)

I'm not okay with status quo. I'm all in favor of stricter regulations, but about who can own guns, not which types are permissible. Assault rifles make up such a negligible percentage of gun deaths that it's astonishing people are so against them. It's a prime example of people freaking out over something that looks and sounds bad but really isn't much of an issue.


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Monday, June 13, 2016 6:46 PM
Jeff's avatar

Right, but your stats disregard socioeconomic conditions. If you compare poor neighborhoods around Chicago or Baltimore, for example. That's one of the many factors that make it complex, but it's not a reason to dismiss the presence of the weapons themselves. Again, why do these same comparisons not hold when they're between western nations?

Back on topic... I unfortunately had my one degree of separation to a victim today, as one was a coworker of a friend. Also, relevant to our audience, J.K. Rowling called out that one of the victims worked (presumably) Forbidden Journey at Universal. It's striking the way that the national conversation has already shifted to politics, but locally, I think people are just trying to figure out what to do next. It's also striking that the non-American media seems far more likely to paint this as an attack on the LGBT community, whereas the US seems focused on terrorism. That's very telling of the differences in our culture.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

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Monday, June 13, 2016 7:22 PM
sirloindude's avatar

Jeff, on the contrary, the very point I'm trying to make is that the socioeconomic conditions are where the focus should be, not banning weapons. I also think that our culture is one that has a serious problem taking responsibility for its actions. That's why I don't agree with weapons bans: it's making everyone lose out rather than take some responsibility and focus more on keeping them out of the hands of those who would do harm with them and improving the lives of the less fortunate.

I also think that it's fine to compare us to other cultures, but again, even though you don't see European governments oppressing their citizens, it doesn't mean that they never will. I agree that there's a really outside chance, and I think such things are far more likely to happen in developing nations these days, but I applaud our founding fathers for their forward thinking, even if it isn't the most popular idea these days.

Lastly, I think that this attack was terrorism against the LGBT community. I don't think it has to be one or the other.


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www.grapeadventuresphotography.com

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Monday, June 13, 2016 7:48 PM
Jeff's avatar

sirloindude said:

Jeff, on the contrary, the very point I'm trying to make is that the socioeconomic conditions are where the focus should be, not banning weapons.

And I'm asking why it can't be both.

I also think that it's fine to compare us to other cultures, but again, even though you don't see European governments oppressing their citizens, it doesn't mean that they never will.

I wholly reject this argument. Anything could happen, but it doesn't mean that it will. Even in the context of theoretical US government oppression, assuming for a moment the absurd notion that its giant military would fall in line behind an oppressor, what are you going to do against tanks and jets?


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

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Monday, June 13, 2016 8:31 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

Because an entire military force has never done that before. Like, not that it could happen in this day and age.

I think you're far too nieve if you think that couldn't happen. The fact that so many People already support a candidate that wants to ban a certain religion from coming into the country shows that if enough people get behind the right person with the wrong ideas, you can't claim it would never happen here.


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Monday, June 13, 2016 8:55 PM
rollergator's avatar

Still, if there's a US government drone with your name on it, there is an insufficient number of handguns, assault rifles, and homemade explosives to keep you safe, regardless of how long you think you can hold a remote wildlife refuge...

Or something.


You still have Zoidberg.... You ALL have Zoidberg! (V) (;,,;) (V)

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Monday, June 13, 2016 10:50 PM

Since 18th century weapons technology was pretty much just muskets and rifles, the Second Amendment basically guaranteed that ordinary citizens could have the same weapons as the government. Today, obviously, the government has F-22's and drones and tanks and could easily suppress any gun-toting dissenters, but I still like to think the fact that the populace is armed would give the government pause before doing anything too outrageous.

Last edited by Mr. Six, Monday, June 13, 2016 10:51 PM
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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 2:41 AM

sirloindude said:

That's why I don't agree with weapons bans: it's making everyone lose out

I fundamentally disagree with the perspective that not having a device that allows you to kill people is losing out.

Yeah, it's the second amendment. But honestly, as someone who grew up in Europe, this perspective is completely bizarre to me.


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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 3:53 AM
Tommytheduck's avatar

According to SWS's article a page back, his wife knew he was scouting DTDisney and Pulse Nightclub. Why is she not under arrest as well? Could she not have possibly prevented this? Or was she in on it and I missed the part that said she was under arrest?

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 6:46 AM

Lord Gonchar said:

And that's exactly what these guys mean about addressing the "correct" problem.

Of course the problem we have (not necessarily in this thread, but in our society at large) seems to be that suggesting that even certain people shouldn't be allowed guns is a non-starter. The whole "slippery slope" argument an all.


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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 9:04 AM
birdhombre's avatar

It also doesn't help that people love to argue in absolutes. Either we wave a magic wand and everything is perfect immediately, or we do nothing at all.

Chinese proverb: The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

American proverb: The single step is not the issue; we need to address the root problem. <cricket noises> <cricket noises> Welp, my work is done here.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 9:15 AM

Unfortunately just about every theme parks is a wide-open target for this. Many parks have no or little security at the gate. Metal detectors may help a little to prevent this from happening inside the gate, but the truth is that anyone with an assault rifle will slaughter everyone at the gate and keep on moving.

There is a gun problem in this country. When the constitution was written, there were no automatic weapons. Yes we have the right to bear arms, but we should not have the right to bear arms that permit these mass slayings. These shouldn't even be legally produced other than for military use.

Those weapons are used to slaughter masses of people. Period. That's their intent. And our VERY greedy gun industry managed to get the ban on these weapons removed in the 2000's. Is it odd how mass shootings have increased?

Our government is corrupt and in the pockets of the corrupt gun industry. They have left the door wide open. Yes, people pull the trigger, but when there is absolutely no barrier to access to these evil weapons. this will continue to happen more often. There is fine gray line to walk in all issues, and right now this issue is completely to the right (who oddly calls themselves "religious") and this is happening. Unlimited guns for everyone!

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 9:27 AM
Jeff's avatar

The ban wasn't removed, actually. It had a 10-year sunset clause unless renewed. It was not renewed in 2004. But as I said, it survived several constitutional challenges. It was legal.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 10:45 AM
sirloindude's avatar

This whole cry for bans on automatic weapons is precisely the whole issue, though. I just posted earlier that assault rifles count for a minuscule portion of gun deaths. On top of that, people clearly don't understand what an assault rifle is, or the AR-15 wouldn't be such a household name. If you ban assault rifles, you likely won't see much of a drop at all in gun violence because it's handguns that are used in the overwhelming majority of deaths.

Also, as I've pointed out I don't know how many times, gun ownership percentages and murder ratios don't always line up. I think that's why we get nowhere. Guns can't do a thing in the world without a person using them, but so many people don't want to even make an effort to solve THAT issue. Jeff, I applaud your acknowledgment that we need to solve that issue too, but I can't say the same for a lot of people who pop up on my Facebook feed.

And Richard, I admit I'm a bit baffled by the obsession Americans have with guns myself. I don't have one and don't want one. For some, though, guns are a part of the culture. I'm not going to begrudge them that, especially because they generally aren't the ones off killing people left and right.


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www.grapeadventuresphotography.com

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 11:11 AM
Pete's avatar

Raven-Phile said:

Interestingly enough, Gonch. - here's a snippet from the article that I find falls right in line with a lot of the discussion we have on here:

Salman told federal authorities on Sunday that her husband had more recently been "scouting Downtown Disney and Pulse [nightclub] for attacks."

Unlike the four Disney World theme parks, Downtown Disney, which was recently renamed Disney Springs, doesn't have security and bag check before entry.

So, the very thing that people on here and Pointbuzz are so vehemently against - so called "security theater" - seems to have done exactly what they're saying it *doesn't* do, and it prevented an attack at an Amusement Park.

How did security theater prevent an attack on a property (Disney Springs) that does not run security theater? That comment makes no sense to me.


I'd rather be in my boat with a drink on the rocks, than in the drink with a boat on the rocks.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 11:26 AM
Jeff's avatar

Disney Springs has no security screening. The theme parks do. Disney Springs is a retail/restaurant district that is not gated.

sirloindude said:

This whole cry for bans on automatic weapons is precisely the whole issue, though. I just posted earlier that assault rifles count for a minuscule portion of gun deaths.

Did anyone say it was a silver bullet? If we acknowledge that it's a complex problem with many causes, you don't reject addressing one cause just because. The Internets say an AR-15 can fire 180 rounds per minute. I don't care what you classify it as, it's a weapon that can do a lot of damage very quickly. If you make the argument that 50 individuals killing 50 other individuals is more of a problem than one individual killing 50 people, I can't even wrap my head around how that's reason to just move on.

This reminds me of the even more strange arguments against EV's. "The cars are too expensive, you can't charge the batteries fast enough, the grid is powered by coal, range isn't long enough, etc." Every one of those issues is or will be solved in time. You don't solve anything by taking anything off the table.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016 11:28 AM
Raven-Phile's avatar

Try reading it again, Pete.

He was scouting Disney World first, but decided not to attack there due to their security measures and bag checks. No idea why he skipped over Disney Springs in favor of Pulse, but probably because there were more gay people at Pulse, and he really hated them.

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