Mount Rainier Ranger Shooting in National Park

On Sunday, January 1 2012, an Iraq war veteran named Benjamin Colton Barnes fatally shot a park ranger (Margaret Anderson) in the national park surrounding Mount Rainier in Washington. This shooting took place near the Narada Falls area of the park.

Colton was known to suffer from PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder). This incident actually followed other shootings that happened in Skyway earlier in the day (where Colton was accused of shooting 4 people, one critically injured). The murder of Margaret Anderson is a horrible tragedy for sure. What’s puzzling and unfortunate about this event is the inevitable assumption/spin by anti-gun people that would imply that the recent reversal of the national park gun ban may have caused this incident. You have to ask yourself – would a mentally unstable violent individual who just shot four people in Seattle hesitate to bring guns into a national park area? It’s ridiculous.The only thing I can think of that would have helped to prevent this incident would be for this deranged guy to have gotten help some how.

What this incident does underscore is the need to be prepared for anything anywhere. It may not be bears or cougars that you need your carry weapon for in the parks – it could be a deranged or drugged-up person. Unfortunate but true.


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2 Responses to Mount Rainier Ranger Shooting in National Park

  1. Shawn says:

    If a “No Guns” sign can work to stop violent criminals, maybe we should just cut straight to the point and put up “No Murder” signs everywhere. Then we wouldn’t need to ban guns, knives, clubs, or anything else someone could use as a weapon.

  2. Joe S. says:

    I just gotta say … as a Vietnam vet I have the highest regard for our men and women in uniform and for all who have served their country in whatever service or capacity. However, the military is a cross section and part of the mixing cauldron of society. Not every one who serves in a combat zone is a nut case, druggie with PTSD. While PTSD is real, you generally find upon investigation that some folks use it as a convienient blanket to cover a multitude of issues. I’ll bet that there were other events and issues in Benjamin Barnes life that point to trouble.
    It’s tragic that he killed this ranger and shot four others. I am stuggling to blame the war in Iraq or any other war for such despicable and aborent behavior.
    God blees our troops!

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