The question many were asking following yesterday's incident in Oregon was "Will this finally be the mass shooting that leads to meaningful gun control legislation?" It's actually the same question that was asked after the previous mass shooting and the mass shooting before that and the mass shooting before that. And as always, the answer is: It depends. It depends on what we learn about the shooter in the Oregon incident and how he acquired the weapons that were used--and how the same old gun control proposals that get rolled out after these incidents would have actually prevented what happened.
Will this finally be the shooting where the gunman would have failed a mandatory background check? We don't know much about the Oregon shooter yet--but no one is reporting that he was a convicted felon. There is no information that he was convicted of any previous gun crimes--or domestic violence incidents--or that he was ever committed to a mental institution. There is no information to lead us to believe that a background check would have prevented him from securing the weapons that he had.
Will this finally be the shooting where the gunman bought all of his weapons at a gun show--where no background check was conducted? No one has come forward to say that they recall the Oregon suspect going from table to table at a firearms show purchasing all the weapons he could afford--and asking the sellers if they were going to do a check on him. And remember, even if they had been doing checks at the show, he likely would have passed.
Will this finally be the shooting where the gunman bought all of his weapons from a private seller? Again, no one is coming out to say that they sold the guns involved on Craigslist or some other personal ad without conducting a background check on the shooter--which again, he likely would have passed.
Will this finally be the shooting where the gunman bought the weapons on the way to the site itself because there was no waiting period? No gun shop owner has said he saw the Oregon suspect making his purchase a half-hour before the shots started on campus--or the day before or even three days before. Odds are, this suspect had every one of the weapons involved for some time and had been practicing using them for some time as well so that he would know how they worked and how he should aim and reload them.
Will this finally be the mass shooting that leads to gun control legislation? Maybe it will. But it's not going to stop what happened yesterday--no matter how much better it might make us all feel to finally "do something".