Stevie Wonder And Rolling Stones React To Newtown Shooting Tragedy

Wonder calls for tighter gun control after shooting.

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Both Stevie Wonder and The Rolling Stones have reacted to the shooting tragedy that occurred in Newtown, Connecticut on Friday. Wonder, who played his annual House Full Of Toys benefit concert on December 15th, asked for a moment's silence at that show. After that performance, he spoke to Rolling Stone about his feelings on the issue:

"I think we're at a very interesting time now where we can use again tragedy such as this, which is a major tragedy, as a way to moving forward to something that we need to confront. I think people can't think like they're living in the wild, wild west going into 2013... With guns and their accessibilities, there have to be stronger and stricter gun laws. It's okay saying no, it's okay particularly when you know some people are not as mentally stable. So you don't want them to have a gun or any other kind of weapon at their disposal."

He also stated that those who argue the Second Amendment guarantees the right to bear arms were 'living in the past':

"Here we are in this time where we're all in pain because of the loss of some 18 children and 12 adults it's ridiculous... No matter how you look at it, it's ridiculous and if you don't see that there's a need to think differently, to see things a little differently than you did in the past, then you're not in touch with today, you're still lost in yesterday."

The Rolling Stones, who played the final scheduled performance of their 50 and Counting run in New Jersey on December 15th, paid tribute to the victims of the shooting. Mick Jagger dedicated a version of Wild Horses to the victims and their families:

"I just wanted to take a minute and send our love and condolences to those who lost their loved ones yesterday."

While some had speculated that the Stones show, which featured guest spots from Lady Gaga, Bruce Springsteen and The Black Keys, might be the last for the band, Mick Jagger promised the audience that the group would be back soon.

89 comments sorted by best / new / date

    iommi600
    Stevie Wonder: "I really didn't see it coming". ...too soon?
    jimcrow
    I was thinking about something like : Stevie Wonder: "I have never witnessed such thing!"
    dudebud
    It's unfortunate that the medications these people are taking always get sidelined. Nearly every mass killer from Virginia Tech to this recent tragedy were all on some form of medication. On a side note, I can't possibly imagine why any average citizen requires a fully automatic assault rifle for any reason.
    getmad24_7
    Surprise, doping up the mentally ill on pills instead of working with them to treat them doesn't work out so well sometimes!
    saint_berzerker
    I sure bet to hell and back that Stevie's bodyguards have semi-autos. Kudos to Jagger for not going political.
    cyclonus
    The only thing about this article that makes it music related is the fact that Stevie Wonder and the Rolling Stones are giving opinions on it
    Jay/Dee
    As a brit, can someone try to explain why after repeated shootings, any suggestion of tighter gun laws are shot down. i can understand it is more about the person than the weapon but surely having some i.d. to prove you are safe and sensible enough to purchase guns wouldnt hurt anyones rights? anyone care care to explain?
    sonofgkex
    You do have to prove who you are and show a clean criminal record. There is usually a waiting period of a couple weeks. (Wait times vary from state to state) It's not like you can just go to target (pun intended) and load up on machine guns. Semi-auto weapons are the ones that fire once every time you pull the trigger in case you were wondering, the problem is that if you know how they are not that hard to turn into automatics. Honestly, the best way to deal with this is every gun owner taking personal responsibility for all of their firearms and guarding them from those who should not have them. For example, I knew where my dad's gun was growing up, but he always kept the lock on it that kept if from being loaded and fired and did not let me know where he kept the key. He took responsibility for his weapon. If this guy's mom did not leave a gun where her handicapped son could access it, he would probably have, at least, done much less damage. Honestly, this is just where Europe differs from America. Obviously, you consider your way better, but many Americans place personal freedoms above certain safety concerns. Also, keep in mind the number of people and landmass of America. Changes, confiscations, checks, everything is basically more difficult to enforce or put into effect. It's very sad sometimes when a worst case scenario occurs, but many Americans would consider this a mental health issue rather than a gun control issue. It's just our way, we don't understand why you guys put up with things like being jailed for hate speech and stuff like that any better than you understand us. No hatred or anything. I am a gun person, but I am a reasonable one. Hope this helps.
    colster6000
    "Obviously, you consider your way better, but many Americans place personal freedoms above certain safety concerns." Speaking as an Australian (where we reacted to one of the worst mass shootings in history in 1996 by significantly enhancing gun control and have not had a significant mass shooting since) this completely perplexes me. I have only met one person in my entire who had a gun and that is a family friend who has a bolt-action rifle to shoot feral rabbits on his bush property. I just don't understand the need at all!
    MusicmonkeyTyke
    For isolated teenagers though, I think guns will be harder to get hold of if they were made illegal, I think guns would remain in gangs obviously but I think it will stop uncle whatshisface owning a firearm which in my opinion would cut down on spontaneous killing sprees from unstable teens.
    spiff-corgi
    I think the tweet that summed it up for me was Simon Pegg's: "How many more children have to die? This insanity beggars belief. It happens again and again and nothing is done. Utterly senseless loss." Something needs to change. America had the highest ratio of firearms per person than any other country. Why do you need guns? Why? What are you doing with them? What are you actually doing with the guns?
    N7Crazy
    As a European, who lives in a country with very strict gun-laws, and therefore very little gun-related violence, murders, and actually no massacres ever in our recent history, I have to ask this... Why the **** do you people in America so desperatly need guns?
    Kueller917
    I've seen Europeans ask the same question a lot, and I don't really know entirely myself, but for the most part it's culture. The US, like it or not, has had guns as part of its creation. The first settlers on North America were armed and saw it as a necessity. There's plenty of European countries that hold onto traditions solely for the sake of tradition. Now for extreme cases, such as getting rid of all arms, that's a breaking of the Bill of Rights which is pretty much the untouchable part of US law (not like the government hasn't found a way to bend around that as much as possible though). But an outright breach is something even I would find a bit disconcerting, just for the possible slippery slope. So yeah... culture, tradition, and law. It's hard shell to break.
    jer-bear5212
    to make sure your country doesn't get all up in our business again.
    Gridlock749
    despite all the downvotes, this is pretty much the reason, preventing any government from imposing unfair laws over us, even our own
    joshhaggart
    You can't ban insanity
    Carl Hungus
    Eventually science will allow us to weed it out of the gene pool. You should read "Brave New World". A very old book that gets into this sort of thing.
    sonofgkex
    Are you nuts? Insanity can be caused by trauma and oppression as much as it can be caused by genetics. There will always be unstable and sick people. \ The only way to "weed out" all the undesirables is through a little thing called eugenics. And with eugenics, 18 kids are just an appetizer.
    Doctor.Dolittle
    I don't think stricter gun control would work, sorry. Even if the firearms were illegal, people would still be able to obtain them. Think of it: drugs like heroin and cocaine are illegal but people still obtain them. I think keeping guns from mentally unstable people is a good thing, but some of them will still find ways to get those guns.
    Shredder666
    Listen to what you're saying though. If SOME mentally unstable people lose access to guns, that's better than nothing. The people who are no longer able to obtain firearms may be the people looking to shoot up the next school. While I think there needs to be some form of counseling or mental health monitoring for young people, I think stricter gun laws need to be put in place. It doesn't make sense to me though. Up here in Canada, yes, we do have slightly stricter gun laws, but you can buy a gun with minimal paperwork. But you don't see the level of gun violence here like you do in the states. Something about the United States is wrong. Especially when a bunch of rednecks call Obama a "nigger" and to get off the television during Sunday Night Football addressing the tragedy. Makes me sick.
    GhostPlayground
    I live in Canada too, and I have to say that it seems to be different all over. In small towns and cities people own guns, but most of the guns are hidden away in safes and only used for hunting. However, once you go into the 'redneck' communities you'll find people who actually take pride in emulating the stereotypical americans. If you go to the native reserves, you'll find that gun violence is also fairly high. Personally, I see the modern-day world as an age of intelligence, and that some people feel threatened by a changing world. Since they feel threatened, they attempt to live in a simpler time so that they don't have to face the new world.
    Rands2113
    Also from Canada ( yay friends), The gun laws here are much better than in the States. You need to have a registered gun license, which means courses you have to take to pass and a psychological evaluation. You get charged if a weapon is concealed, brought out in the public eye and basically any time it's not being used for hunting.
    dclingenpeel
    Hey, I don't understand what you mean that you get charged? do you really get charged with a crime? Not being a dick or anything, just trying to figure law out. I'm from the U.S. and I do believe there need to be more steps before people can put their hands on a weapon. I has several guns and I feel like it was just a little too easy to get them. I also have a carry permit and it seemed like the biggest hassle with that was the cost and waiting period. I'm all for guns but perhaps we do need to be more like Canada.
    sonofgkex
    Those are very similar laws to the United States in most places. You have to have a license to carry it concealed and you get in trouble for "brandishing" if you wave it around or take it out in public or intimidate someone with it. Look, I feel much safer with access to weapons than I would if only those who were breaking the law could obtain them. Most people such as myself that approve of weapons are not irresponsible. I have fired everything from a .22 to an M60, and I would never use them to harm someone who was not attempting to hurt me or my loved ones. Every once in a while some nutjob gets his hands on one, but as was the case in the Sandy Hook tragedy, the gun was stolen. You could easily argue that the shooter's mother should have taken precautions, but I am not trying to assign blame. The point is that if someone wants a gun enough to break the law to obtain it, they can get it. Making it impossible for normal people to have weapons would just leave them defenseless in cases such as home invasions. Once when I was about 12 there was a 6'4 300 ish pounds bipolar guy that we knew who was off his meds and calling my house and leaving messages that were vaguely threatening. "See you in hell" and that sort of thing. This guy later came into a church with a cape, crown, and sword and demanded to preach, so he was pretty unpredictable to say the least. If my dad had not had access to guns, how would we have stopped him had he broken into our house? I am glad he never made us defend ourselves, but I would favor being prepared over sitting defenseless.
    ljpfahey
    It will be difficult, because gun control in America is basically a myth. Your point about how illegal things are still available is exactly why gun control is a myth. I'm sure the number of guns there are in America is a terrifying number. But just because it's going to be difficult to get it under control, doesn't mean you shouldn't start. Any steps in the right direction are good! It's better than leaving the flood gates open. If it means there are just 5% less guns out there, then at least it means it's less likely that a gun will fall into the wrong hands. Hopefully much more than that can be achieved! Every time something like this happens, it's always said that they were the least likely person to do it or 'He seemed so nice'. It shows that it can not be predicted easily. Anyone in the US with a gun in their house who thinks 'My family are nice and sane. It's fine for me to keep a gun upstairs' might regret thinking that. If the right messages can be communicated to people, mass gun amnesties could be successful; 'successful' being a collection of 5%. And yes, the right to bear arms might have seemed a perfectly reasonable right a couple of hundred years ago, but so did the right to keep a slave. It's 2012!
    crazyjay14
    you are spot on my friend,LJPFAHEY for PRESIDENT!!!this was just sick and wrong and completely avoidable.this has to stop now.
    Gridlock749
    police officers also often act outside the law and commit crimes themselves so is the law a myth? (I unfortunately don't have statistics about Canada)
    ljpfahey
    HA, Jay14, you're crazy. I think Obama's doing an alright job. Plus I'm British! @gridlock749 - Of course, I meant it metaphorically. Specifically I meant that although there is control over who can directly buy guns, after that, there is very little control about where the gun goes. So it's not very effective. A criminal group, for example just need one member with a clean record to get guns for the rest of them. That's just one example. A gun could fall into anyone's hands once it's left the shop. Gun control is a facade. You just have to say no to guns, and the first steps are the hardest. When you get into if the police always act within the law you're just going off topic. Sure, police corruption happens, but how is that relevant? Also, the NRA statement yesterday was one of the most disgusting and shameful things I've ever seen.
    Gridlock749
    do you see something wrong with the world that awards obama the nobel peace prize for hope?
    ljpfahey
    Because the world voted in the nominations for the nobel peace prize? Nobel Peace Prizes are awarded by boards of officials. That group of officials might have made a strange choice but what does that have to do with anything?
    spiff-corgi
    The dude who went and shot up that school didn't even obtain the guns so a system to prevent mentally disabled people from obtaining guns is irrelevant. He got them from his mum, who was a "gun enthusiast". It's thing to be "enthused" by guns, which is mental in itself, but why the hell does a mother of a disabled person have guns that he can access? That is the problem: the culture in America that it should be accepted as normal for everyday citizens to possess a gun. It really isn't normal.
    tele-disaster
    or you could do the UK approach. no guns. Not even the police have guns, only the army and specially trained anti-terrorist police units. the only weapons allowed are air guns and crossbows, with stringent rules on their use. no one under the age of 18 is allowed into a shop selling such items, and they are only permitted for use in hunting. some guns like shotguns are licensed but no automatic weapons.
    kratos379
    It's not plausible to do that in the US. Too many people own guns already and it would be impossible taking all of them away. Many would fight back. To get a gun, you should undergo psychological evaluation and get some training. If his mom had some training on how to store guns more safely, those kids would likely stll be alive now.
    getmad24_7
    Why is it never even mentioned that maybe instead of gun control, we need to more effectively treat and deal with the mentally ill?
    BwareDWare94
    Because everyone who's ever committed a gun crime was addicted in the same way to firearms as meth and heroine and cocaine addicts are addicted to their drugs. Bravo! You made a typical redneck comparison that is entirely irrelevant. Shit, I'd expect the NRA to hit us with something like that.
    Doctor.Dolittle
    I didn't mean to imply that people who have ever committed a gun crime were addicted in the same way that a meth head is. Instead, I was comparing on how people acquire them, despite them being illegal. People will still acquire them, no matter what. It's just that some of the people are thinking that making tighter gun laws will make it a fail proof plan.
    sonofgkex
    RIght, it comes down to desire. Someone planning a massacre cares very little about the legality of their firearm purchase. As long as there is a demand for guns both legal and illegal, people will be willing to sell them.
    ljpfahey
    Of course, no one should expect fail proof. Identify one law which is fail proof... I'll just refer back to my 'flood gates' point. If the flow can at least be bottle necked it is a good thing. It's statistics; reduce the probability of it happening again. It is also different to the drug situation because the direct harm caused by drugs is to the individual themselves, with guns the direct harm is to the person who gets shot. I believe everyone should be free to decide what happens to their own body, but we have no right to decide what happens to others'.
    rolandroi
    And what's the point of having a gun? Definitely to kill someone.
    Gridlock749
    or, you know, defending yourself against someone who would kill you, do police officers carry guns simply to murder people? no. Do they sometimes? perhaps. But wanting to kill someone is not a necessary part of owning a gun.
    oftenbanned.
    First off I will say that I am not a fan of guns and I will never understand the guy/gal who has to have like 15 guns in his house. I do however understand those that have a gun or two for protection or hunting etc.. Tighter gun control is pointless, that is not the problem. The old saying, "Guns don't kill people. People kill people", comes to mind. If you look at all the situations that has happened the retard who decides to go on a killing spree and then off themselves (should have just killed themselves in there house if they feel like leaving this world... ****ing cowards) showed "signs" before doing so. "signs" that friends and family failed to notice. Had loved ones taken the time to realize that the person was having issues they might have been able to help that person and prevent dumb shit like this from happening. To people who have guns to defend themselves and their families good for you. But to those that stock up on guns just because ...u scare me. Anyway take care of your friends and family. As I stated earlier I hate guns but they are not them. Sorry for the long post.
    getmad24_7
    Even if they notice them, we aren't doing a great job treating the mentally ill, and many people avoid treatment for mental problems because our culture looks down on mental patients so much.
    Zeke Whiting
    Gun control won't help guys. Don't listen to the politicians.
    colster6000
    How can you possible justify this statement? I hear this over and over from the pro-gun lobby. Consider this, a mentally unstable person with a gun is very dangerous. Take away the gun and he's now a much less dangerous mentally unstable person. The simple fact is that it is a whole lot more difficult to commit mass-murder without a gun!
    Gridlock749
    consider this, the media and politicians will only present you with whatever facts support their opinion and nothing else, nevermind the guy in China who stabbed a bunch of kids on literally the same day why did he stab them instead of shooting them? strict gun control laws
    RATMfan420
    Yeah, lets make the guns the enemy and completely ignore the mental health issue.
    freedomdemon
    Getting an assult rifle is as easy as going to walmart filling out the paper work waitng 30 to 45 min and walking out of the store with it in your hands. Why the f*** can you buy an assault rifle at wal mart in the first place?????
    Gridlock749
    what? did you just watch bowling for columbine because there was a shooting or something?
    freedomdemon
    no i didnt im talking about other countries and i never even saw that movie or what ever the hell it is. I have kids of my own and would be devestated if anything like this happened to one of them and i could not imagine what these parents are going thru.
    sonofgkex
    You can't. It's a semi-auto that looks like an assault rifle. It's just a fancy hunting weapon really. You can't buy a true assault rifle, and if you know how to modify an AR-15 or something, tighter regulations are not going to stop you.
    freedomdemon
    no you cant use them for hunting they are just for shooting so what would be the purpose of owning one?? I currently do not own a gun but i do support the second amendment and believe it is our right to own a gun. the good thing is that at least we dont have twelve year olds in our military.
    DrakeTheOne
    Gun control isn't really the issue. Mental health is, though this was said in the comments above. It's not easy to get an automatic weapon, you have to have a class three weapons permit, which I understand isn't easy to get. Also, trying to get people with mental health issues more help won't work. Crazy people don't realize that they are going crazy, they thing that they are getting saner. I doubt that "saner" is actually a word.
    Zoltan1251
    its second mass shooting this year only..... 29TH SINCE 2000!!!!! and still there are idiots claiming having assault rifle or 4 hand guns is completely normal
    anvil is god
    Gun control won't help, identifying the nut jobs will.
    N7Crazy
    The guy was autistic - are you going to lock up all autistic teenagers now? You can't just "indentify" the nutjob - some of the most psychopathic, and loony people of the planet never show any signs that they are completely mad, until they take action. And stricter gun control would help, since it would at least make a difference in how easy it is to obtain a firearm...
    getmad24_7
    That said, the shooters for virginia tech, batman, etc all did show signs of having problems. Thanks to the current mental health system, they were let go back into the world. Effectively treating the mental ill is just as important as gun control, because if even if you take away the guns, the mentally ill who do this kind of thing are still going to be just as messed up and do things in this vein until we can do something about their illness.
    Gridlock749
    they also tend to be mistreated by their peers, so we'll lock up the bully's then too?
    sonofgkex
    No, you're going to invest in a gun safe and keep the combination to yourself.
    Alice2Mudgarden
    If elementary students were allowed to carry guns, this sort of thing wouldn't happen
    sonofgkex
    Nobody actually believes that I feel like this is something that anti-gun people say about pro-gun people more than any opinion actually held by a pro-gun rights person. I know someone said teacher should have guns, but that is just asking for trouble as the students would probably find ways to get it from them. This view, although espoused by a few, is not a view held by the normal people that approve of guns such as myself.
    i_am_metalhead
    Oh boo hoo. Poor people in Connecticut. What about all of the people who are killed on a daily basis? Where's your sympathy for them? Oh, I forgot, the media doesn't tell you to be upset about them.
    howyjr
    Stevie is a wise man
    howyjr
    Wow. I thought humans were evolving to a non-violent and peaceful existence, but half of the sentiment on this page would suggest otherwise. Why there are guns in civilian hands for anything other than hunting and law enforcement purposes is beyond me.
    proudtodrown
    we need stricter gun laws and regulations, but we need to stress the importance of getting mental help more than anything.
    getmad24_7
    And we need to remove the cultural bias against the mentally ill and treating mental illness. Everyone thinks of mental hospitals as the human warehouses they became in the 20th century, and society looks down upon people who are seeking help as a mental patient.
    MetalMullet
    Gun control, nutjob control, mentally-ill people control, drug control...hmm, I see a pattern here. But, wait, what if, the control itself led us to all this misery? It's a mindfu*k, isn't it? We think more control is going to save our society from the collapse, without paying a single thought to the idea that control itself might be the issue. How about less control? And I'm not taking about guns, drugs, alcohol etc. I'm talking general, I'm talking about all the other field, I'm talking about life. Life is not about control, think about that.
    ginger5010
    I'm making $86 an hour working from home. I was shocked when my neighbour told me she was averaging $95 but I see how it works now. I feel so much freedom now that I'm my own boss. This is what I do, Great70DOtcom
    Gridlock749
    I will simply say that we were given the right to bear arms to defend ourselves against soldiers, officers of the law et al, however even if a police officer enters your home illegally you have no right to do anything about it, so I don't see the point, unless you can shoot any ***** that breaks into your house and destroys your property, even if he's hiding behind a badge.