Mitt Romney and Barack Obama Both Acknowledge Parents' Role in Quelling Gun Violence

Which candidate said young men must have the courage to raise their children?


romney "totally agrees"

Mitt Romney's observation that parental involvement is critical to keep kids in school and off the streets has been skewered as being anti-single mom. Here's what Romney said (in response to a question about AK-47s, no less):

We need moms and dads, helping to raise kids. Wherever possible the — the benefit of having two parents in the home, and that's not always possible. A lot of great single moms, single dads. But gosh to tell our kids that before they have babies, they ought to think about getting married to someone, that's a great idea.

Because if there's a two parent family, the prospect of living in poverty goes down dramatically. The opportunities that the child will — will be able to achieve increase dramatically. So we can make changes in the way our culture works to help bring people away from violence and give them opportunity, and bring them in the American system.

Then-candidate Barack Obama addressed the issue of youth violence at an address to the NAACP in 2008. He said:

I know that nine little children did not walk through a schoolhouse door in Little Rock so that we could stand by and let our children drop out of school and turn to gangs for the support they are not getting elsewhere…

…if we're serious about reclaiming that dream, we have to do more in our own lives, our own families, and our own communities. That starts with providing the guidance our children need, turning off the TV, and putting away the video games; attending those parent-teacher conferences, helping our children with their homework, and setting a good example. It starts with teaching our daughters to never allow images on television to tell them what they are worth; and teaching our sons to treat women with respect, and to realize that responsibility does not end at conception; that what makes them men is not the ability to have a child but the courage to raise one.

Another difference that largely isn't.

NEXT: Lance Armstrong Steps Down From Charity

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Romney and Obama also both disapprove of child rape.

    See! They’re the same!

    1. Yes but only Romney would be skewered for being anti-union because of all the police, counselors and med-techs being put out of work by ending it.

  2. But Ed, this is one of the few times Obama made sense. What the fuck is Romney supposed to say? Sure they are saying the same thing because it is true.

    1. Not saying it isn’t true, just pointing out how ridiculous it is to spin this as Romney being anti-single mom. Big election, small things and all that

      1. Okay. That makes sense.

    2. The important thing is that EK fulfilled his anti-Romney quota, and now he can hop on the Orange Line, sip his latte, and get ready for the cocktail party tonight.

      1. Uhhh not sure how pointing out that what Romney is being hit on this morning is pretty much the same thing Obama believes is anti-Romney? It’s here’s what he said, and here’s what he said. Any bias being read into it is yours alone.

        1. Just ignore Tulpy-poo, Ed. The important thing is that he fulfilled his Romney-shilling douchebag agenda, and now he can hop on his sybian, masturbate, and get ready for his rainbow party tonight.

          1. and now he can hop on his sybian, masturbate,

            That’s disgusting… really.

            1. Thank you, tarran. It’s good to know it had the desired effect.

        2. Apologies. It looked like you were dissing MR in the headline and I jumped to conclusions.

      2. Fucking reading comprehension without putting my preconceived notions on display for all to see – how does it work?

        1. Nine times out of ten I would have been right.

          1. “Reason often points out the massive faults of my Republican man-crush, despite the fact that he might be 4% better than the current asshole!”


            1. 4% is over 12 million Americans.

            2. 4%? That is better than I get with my ING savings account!!!!!

  3. I knew it, its the parents fault, if only we have more armed domestic drones we could solve that problem.

  4. I was annoyed during most of last night’s presidential debate, but when Mitt Romney insinuated that single-parent families are to blame for gun violence in America, my blood pressure shot through the roof.

    I’m a single mother. A proud one. And Romney’s remarks are ignorant, insulting and based on stereotypes that degrade the hard work single parents do every day.

    Because when Romney apparently said it, it was to make that single parent even more a victim than she already considers herself. When Obama insinuates it, he’s using statistics to feel her pain or something equally as good.

    1. Seriously, fuck her, but do please use a condom.

    2. I was annoyed during most of last night’s presidential debate, but when Mitt Romney insinuated that single-parent families are to blame for gun violence in America, my blood pressure shot through the roof

      Maybe you shouldn’t be so sensitive. Now get back in the kitchen and make me a sandwich, trick.

      1. What kind of world have we built where a woman is proud of not being able to land a husband?

  5. How about mexican kids and mexican mothers mowed down with AK-47s Obama we sent down there?

    1. Jobs created or saved! (for casket makers, undertakers, crime-scene cleaners…)

    2. If it’s AK-47s that the drug gangs are using, shouldn’t we be blaming Romania rather than the US?

  6. But I also share your belief that weapons that were designed for soldiers in war theaters don’t belong on our streets.

    The Second Amendment talks about arms, not hunting implements. Weapons of war are exactly what we have a right to own and carry. And if availability of weapons and ammunition was the problem, my kids would have been the worst in the world. With their level of training, that would translate into a pile of bodies.

    1. Plus the AR-15s, etc, that civilians are allowed to own without a tax stamp are not suitable for modern warfare as they have no automatic capability.

      1. “Modern” M-16s (which are AR-15s with tri-burst) are not fully automatic either. Try again.

        1. The distinction between the various flavors of XM15E2 derivatives in service with the military is lost on many, but largely pedantic here.

          1. Precisely. AR-15s don’t have tri-burst, which is a pretty big deal.

            1. No it’s not. Tri-burst is stupid. Like you.

              1. I agree tri burst is just about useless. I have one MG with a tri burst kit installed and I never use that selector position.

        2. I didn’t say fully automatic. Tri-burst is a kind of automatic fire.

      2. So now Tulpa is an expert in the employment of the M16/M4?

        Hint: the selector switch rarely is moved beyond semi to three round burst.

        (and WTF is LAOL?)

        1. law and order libertarian

          and I never presented myself as an expert, just said that an AR-15 wouldn’t be used in modern warfare.

    2. In the context of 18th century style warfare. Or should we be able to buy nukes on the open market? If the principle is that the people should be able to compete with the federal government if needed, it’s kind of pointless to whine about automatic rifles when the government could incinerate your city.

      1. So tell me why the items protected by the 2nd amendment are frozen in 1789, while the 1st amendment and 4th amendments protect 20th and 21st century innovations?

        1. Also tell me why the folks obsessed with “access” to everything else don’t think someone else should be forced to buy me a gun, instead of making me jump through hoops to do so myself?

          1. That’s a great idea. The Republicans, to get the Democrats to back off of the welfare state, should create a new social program to ensure that every American has a gun.

            1. Individual mandate?

              1. Individual mandate?


              2. No, employer mandate. Just like my “free” BC.

                My rights are meaningless without the means to exercise them!

              3. Yes, but as sarcasmic alludes, people who fail to exercise their Second Amendment rights will have to pay a penalty. I mean a tax. I mean a penalty. A penalty, a tax.

                1. Reminds me of Little League, where our coach would randomly hit us in the nuts with a baseball bat to make sure we had a cup on.

        2. They’re not. I think the second amendment should be repealed for obsolescence.

          1. How much to cross the bridge?

            1. Seriously, don’t respond to the sockpuppet.

            2. Oh is that not an opinion that’s allowed here at the “free minds” forum?

              1. There is a difference between “allowed” and “worthy of a response”.

                Not that you’re much for distinctions.

                1. If I’m not worthy of a response, then why do you respond?

                  1. Private charity.

          2. nobody cares…

      2. Or should we be able to buy nukes on the open market?

        Even if we could, no one would because of the price.

        1. Eric Schmidt could, and he would hopefully head right to Cupertino.


          Posted from my iPhone 5

      3. I mean I would definitely agree that there are some public safety limits on the 2nd amendment, just like the 1st, but they’re nowhere near as tight as what you would like to believe. Cannons for instance were around in 1789 but were generally not available to private citizens.

        1. They were available to anyone with the coin and inclination.

        2. The text doesn’t draw any kind of lines (except for the well-trained militia qualification that is completely ignored by the modern free-for-all interpretation), so that would seem to be up to the legislative and judicial systems. People can reasonably disagree about where the line is. Just don’t tell me discussion of a social issue as basic and problematic as gun proliferation is made politically and legally taboo by the 2A, because that’s a strong argument for repeal of such a bad policy.

          1. Tony

            1) The militia clause does not place any sort of limit. The text does not say that second amendment rights can only be exercised by those in a militia

            2) Militia, as understood at the time, refers to all non-military males of fighting age

            3) “Well-regulated” did not mean the same thing then as it does today. Regulated, in this context, means trained or prepared, not controlled. The text effectively states, “Because having a well-trained militia is necessary for the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

        3. Cannons for instance were around in 1789 but were generally not available to private citizens.

          Sure they were, and it was not at all unusual for civilian shipping to go forth in what amounted to warships. Most oceanic cargo vessels sported at least a few cannons. It really wasn’t until you got to the clipper ships that sailing vessels stopped being armed. East India merchantmen were famously becannoned, for example.

          1. Most of the warships that America fielded during the revolution were Privateers, so called because they were private, civilian-owned vessels carrying privately bought cannon. For that matter, there were a good number of privateers operating during the War of 1812 as well, IIRC.

      4. A government nuking it’s own city is kind of counter-productive, and what use does a nuke have to a rebel group trying to overthrow said government? You can’t use it without killing massive numbers of innocent people, which again, kind of defeats the point

        1. Well, if the government is headquartered in a certain city, and most of its highest ranking personnel are in that city, and that city pretty much just exists for the benefit of that government and associated rent seekers, and if the ordinary non-government citizens in that city don’t inspire much sympathy among the rebel movement, then it seems like it could do more good than harm.

    3. This raises a critical point–why is government considered more trustworthy than individual citizens? Citizens, at least, face real consequences for their actions.

      While I don’t want my neighbor having a nuclear weapon, I don’t want Obama having one, either. Or hundreds.

      1. If nukes exist, the government is going to have them. Just like anything else the government wants.

      2. why is government considered more trustworthy than individual citizens?

        I believe that falls under the “Fuck you, that’s why” clause.

        1. I confess to being rhetorical. I know why–because no one can stop them.

          So much for limited government.

    4. But I also share your belief that weapons that were designed for soldiers in war theaters don’t belong on our streets.

      Actual mil-spec weapons are largely illegal for civilian ownership in this country anyway.

      1. Untrue. They are completely legal in many states, it’s just that you have to go through a ton of bullshit and tax stamps to get one.

        1. Technically most states have laws making full auto weapons illegal but with exceptions for those registered per the NFA. That is why repealing the NFA without separate state action would immediately make felons out of a lot of collectors.

          1. Or they could revise NFA to make the tax stamp shall-issue and reduce the tax to $1.

            1. Now that is an interesting idea. I still think a total repeal would be best, but if the ’86 ban were reversed and suppressors, SBRs, and SBSs reclassified as Title I firearms, it would be a good start.

            2. The biggest issue is the closing of the machine gun registry. $200 isn’t really that bad (though $1 would be a hell of a lot better). It’s the fact that the supply is artificially constrained because nothing made since 1986 can be legally owned that is the biggest problem.

              1. Believe me, it’s a pain in the ass to wait 3-12 months just to pick up a gun, especially when I’ve gone through the background check a bunch of times before. Every damn time, you have to do the check and prints and signoff. Unless a corporation or trust is purchasing the item.

        2. Well, some states have flatout prohibitions on them. And there is no legal obligation for anyone to give the necessary NFA permissions.

          From wiki:

          Private owners wishing to purchase an NFA item must obtain approval from the ATF, obtain a signature from the Chief Law Enforcement Officer (CLEO) who is the county sheriff or city or town chief of police (not necessarily permission), pass an extensive background check [etc] . . . Many times law enforcement officers will not sign the NFA documents. There have been several unfavorable lawsuits where plaintiffs have been denied NFA approval for a transfer. These lawsuit include; Lomont v. O’Neill 2002 9th circuit, Westfall v. Miller 1996 5th circuit, and Steele v. National Firearms Branch 1985 11th circuit. In response Tennessee and Alaska have passed state laws which require the CLEO to execute the NFA documents. On October 28, 2010 in response to a writ of mandamus a Tennessee Williamson County Chancellor Robbie Beal found that the sheriff or CLEO is not required to execute NFA documents according to Tenn. Code Ann. 39-17-1361.

          I suppose its an exercise for the reader as to whether it is accurate to say something is illegal when it is illegal unless you get permission which nobody is required to give you.

          1. The “Fuck you, that’s why” clause triumphs again!

          2. Corporations or trustz are exempt from the LEO signoff and background check requirements for NFA transfers and registrations.

  7. What would we ever do without parents quelling those violent guns?

    1. Guns don’t kill people – unregulated Evul Kochporashunsz that sell MENENGITIS-TAINTED DRUGS kill people!!!11!

      Oh, wait, that happened…

      1. Guns don’t kill people, except in Mexico.

        1. and those don’t count. Just like when a plane crashes somewhere but no Americans are aboard.

  8. Can’t we please get back to talking about Sandra Flukes overpriced contraception…..for the good of the nation?!

  9. This Just In: Romney, Obama Agree on Crucial Issues; Both Pro-Apple Pie and pro-American Flag

    1. Bullshit, Romney favors Mile High Apple Pie while Obama favors Dutch Style with its softer crust.

      1. My kids don’t like pie. To me, nothing says more about the gap between adults and children than that.

        1. My kids don’t like pie.

          Maybe it’s because they’ve never had a good toutiere.

  10. What I found wierd was when Obama started rambling on about how we need more edication funding so that kids can then go to community college. Like he’s totally oblivious to the fact that both Jared Loughner and James Holmes had been to college or community college.

    What nobody seems to acknowledge is that neither of these mass shooters was a kid from an underpriviledged background. They were both from middle class (if not upper middle class) two-parent families. Holmes parents were a mathematician and an RN, Loughner’s parents appear to be a construction worker and a horticultiarist who worked for the park service.

    The problem with both of them is that they are both mentally ill. Which has nothing to do with having parents or educational opportunities.

    1. He made the point about urban gun violence being done with cheap handguns, which in terms of sheer numbers is a far bigger problem than lone crazy people with high-powered weapons.

      So educational opportunities for the general problem of gun violence, and assault weapons ban reinstatement to deal with mass shootings.

      1. Have you been to a gun store recently? There aren’t very many cheap handguns anymore. The majority of crime guns are stolen, anyway.

        1. Tony’s more likely to go to a strip club than a gun shop.

      2. He rambled on about assault weapons and how they need to be banned, so it appeard to ME that he was referencing Aurora.

        Also you know the phrase “urban gun violence” is racist, you racist.
        Especially if you also mention single-parent families in the same statement.

      3. “Assault weapons” is a meaningless term that tells nothing about the capabilities of the gun. And if someone is willing to break the law against murder by killing masses of people, I doubt they’re going to be stopped by laws against owning assault weapons

  11. I want a Presidential candidate that will stand up and reference the fact that out of hundreds of millions of firearms in private possession in the U.S., a vanishingly small fraction are used in the commission of actual crimes. Someone who will answer a retarded gun control question with facts such as the dropping violent crime rate, the large number of law abiding firearms owners, and the fact that prohibition only leads to black markets and more violence.

    Also, someone who will repeal the NFA, even though that would cause the value of my collection to plummet.

    1. It’s funny. The liberal POV seems to be that all abortions must be kept legal because 1% or whatever are rape or incest conceptions; while all firearms must be made illegal because 0.1% are used in crimes.

      1. Firearms must be made illegal because only trained members of the government should be armed, and they would never ever take advantage of an unarmed citizenry.

        Never ever ever.

  12. One of the worst things about this country is that you can’t judge some choices as being better than others because then you’ll offend the people who didn’t make those choices. So we get a society where people increasingly make the worse choices because they think every choice is equally valid.

  13. My kids don’t like pie. To me, nothing says more about the gap between adults and children than that.

    I believe it highlights your poor parenting skills. Report for re-education.

    1. Perhaps. Then again, there is an upside–there’s more pie for me.

      1. Ever made toutiere? Seriously.

        There’s a million recipes out there, here’s our family’s.

        A double crusted pie filled with cooked ground meat, a mix of pork and beef with some crushed crackers to absorb some of the juice, seasoned with salt and pepper, maybe some cloves and/or other “holiday” type spices. Some put potatoes into the filling. We don’t.

        Served hot with cold cranberry sauce.

        I’ll take that over a fruit pie any day of the week.

  14. If they care so much about families maybe they should stop breaking them up with aggressive deportation and incarceration policies. Mitt Romney loves families so much he thinks parents should go to jail for an ounce of medical marijuana. Barack Obama loves families so much he’s deported parents at the highest rate ever.

  15. Census Bureau putting out questionable data again.

    Government: Violent crimes rose 18 percent in 2011

    The victimization figures are based on surveys by the Census Bureau of a large sample of people in order to gather data from those who are victims of crime. They are considered the government’s most comprehensive crime statistics because they count both crimes that never are reported to the police as well as those reported.

    Last May, the FBI’s preliminary crime report for 2011, which counts only crimes reported to police, concluded that crime dropped again last year, down 4 percent for violent crime and 3.7 percent for property crime.

    So there was a friggin huge increase in unreported violent crimes last year? Not buying that.

    1. Gotta justify the police-state somehow.

    2. So there was a friggin huge increase in unreported violent crimes last year? Not buying that.

      Possibly, as more people figure out that calling the cops (a) doesn’t exactly trigger a massive manhunt for the perpetrator unless the victim is a white girl and (b) means you may have to deal face-to-face with the cops, which may have more downside than upside. Especially if you are a dog owner.

      1. After my house was broken into I made the mistake of calling the police, and the asshole says “Was this drug related?”. I’m like “Uh, what?” and he says “Mind if I search for drugs?”. I said “Wait a minute, I called you about a break in” and he says “I think this was drug related. Can I search for drugs?” and I finally figured out that he didn’t give a shit about the break in so I said “No” and he left.

  16. The victimization figures are based on surveys by the Census Bureau

    If we can redefine “poverty” we can sure as hell redefine “victimhood”.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.