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Friday, December 14, 2012

And here we go again.

I presume that you are aware that some crazy fool walked into an elementary school in Newtown, CT today and shot 27 people, 18 of them being children.

I have been attacked on Twitter for responding too quickly and being disrespectful to the dead.  Really?  If we don't discuss this NOW, we will forget about it and another tragedy will occur, and then another.  If you want to prevent further tragedies, NOW is the time to think about it.  If you can't discuss this now, then WHEN?

The vast majority of gun owners (at least 99%, any way) are responsible citizens who would never do anything like this (and I am one of them).  However, the idea that we are powerless as a society to prevent mentally unstable people from owning weapons is ridiculous, and will at some point result in the loss of our rights to keep and bear arms.

Don't think so?  Let me ask you a question: if we can license people who own cars so that they may operate them, and require them to be familiar with their proper usage, why can we not do this for weapons, which are normally intentionally lethal?  We, as a society, refuse to allow people to drive if they insist on driving while impaired or are no longer able to properly operate their vehicles.  Why, then, can we not do the same thing for weapons?

While the licensing procedure doesn't eliminate DUIs or Grandpa driving onto the sidewalk and accidentally killing someone, it greatly reduces the occurrences.  There is no rational reason that we as a society cannot set up licensing requirements for weapons owners.  I, as a weapons owner since the age of ELEVEN, do not see how my right to possess a weapon would be infringed.

The National Rifle Association, dear readers, is NOT in business to protect the rights of weapons owners.  It is in the business to remove any and all obstacles to weapons manufacturers being able to sell their wares to everyone, no matter what age.  This is why they have gone far beyond what they once did, just to promote shooting sports and gun safety, which in and of itself is not a bad thing.  My father, who was a part-time gunsmith when we lived in Northeast Arkansas, was a member until he noticed how crazy they were getting.

We MUST, as a society, take more steps to insure that mentally ill people get the help they need, no matter the cost, and we must take steps to insure that they do NOT have access to weaponry.  While we will never completely eliminate this problem, there is no rational reason we cannot reduce the likelihood of re-occurrence.

1 comment:

captainkona said...

I don't know, brother. I lived near Stockton, CA when Patrick Purdy shot up a schoolyard there in '89. Afterward it was all about banning assault weapons. We see how well that worked.

I just don't think the answer lies in bans, or as some of the more wacky amongst us want, a complete repeal of the 2nd Amendment.
And though our entertainment is awash in mindless violence, we are supposed to be able to distinguish between reality and and insanity.

The fact is that we live in a paranoid society. Remember Tony Shipley's reaction to my blog post? I made no threats and the entire TNGA was hiding under their desks. (cowards that they are)

I wish I had an answer. What pains me the most is that there might not be one.