Washington, D.C. - Eric Thompson, the arms dealer from Green Bay, Wisconsin, said publicly after helping arm the Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois university shooters that since homicidal maniacs were buying guns and accessories from him, law-abiding citizens should buy guns from him, too, to protect themselves from the killers he was arming.
Now, he has done it again. The tortured misogynist who killed three and wounded nine in a Pittsburgh area gym this week was another customer of TGSCOM, the online arms warehouse that Thompson operates, buying a magloader and a high-capacity magazine from the dealer last year.
Once again, Thompson is telling journalists how upset he is, and how the incident proves that potential victims should arm themselves, to protect themselves from killers. The victims the Pennsylvania killer shot were participating in an aerobics class.
“It seems to me that if I were a person who discovered I helped arm three homicidal maniacs in two and a half years, I’d question why I was staying in the arms business,” said Paul Helmke, President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. “Eric Thompson will probably keep selling arms, and argue that women in the middle of an aerobics class should have had their guns at the ready. Evil exists in this world, and it is too often aided by some who think of themselves as legitimate businessmen.
“The 48-year-old Pennsylvania gym shooter had been issued a concealed weapons permit. The high-capacity magazine he used would have been illegal for sale in the U.S. under the Federal assault weapons ban, which expired in 2004,” Helmke said. “Why do we make it so easy for these dangerous to get these dangerous weapons? We need to be asking this.”
After he was linked to the two previous shootings, Thompson posted a press release:
Thompson says that while he is pro-Second Amendment, he would like to see an open and honest discussion from both sides of the controversial gun control debate. To help facilitate that discussion, Thompson is planning to launch www.GunDebate.com as a location where people can “have a dialogue on the best way to prevent future tragedy.” Thompson said the site should be ready later this week.
“I hope and pray I will never again be in a position where I am asked questions about selling items used in a crime,” said Thompson. “The next news story I want to be involved in is how I sold a firearm to someone who helped prevent tragedy - not cause it.”
The website he said he was launching, www.gundebate.com, did not appear to be operational today. And so far, there has not been a news story about one of the firearms he has sold preventing a tragedy.