Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A Thought About Gun Control

Another mass shooting, this time out in California. 6 Dead.

Yesterday, two groups get into a fight on Clearwater beach, not far from me, and 2 people got shot in 3 separate shooting incidents.

3 dead in a shooting in Lakeland, a bit east of here.

This morning, I've seen a few posts from the father of one of the CA victims, and the man has an intense, burning anger mixed in with his grief. He's furious that, after all of the previous shootings, nothing has been done--really, basically nothing at all--to try to address the scourge of gun violence in this country. He's convinced that his son is dead because our politicians, either in bed with or afraid of the NRA, did nothing.

Look, speaking from a far calmer, less grief-striken place, I know that the world isn't that simple. There wasn't any law that could have been passed post-Sandy Hook which would have guaranteed that this man's son would now be alive. We can't draw a straight line like that.

But, for God's sake, we haven't even been able to close the gun-show loophole, and institute universal background checks. So many dead children (I can't bring myself to look up the exact number) in Newtown, and not one piece of legislation passed which even attempts to stem the tide (although, there have been plenty of laws passed which expand or protect gun-rights). Which even attempt to make a difference in the right direction. A gun dealer--a gun dealer--received death threats because he had the audacity to try to sell smart-guns. Guns which might--might--reduce gun violence without taking away anyone's right to own a gun.

I really do understand that there aren't simple solutions. Banning "Assault Rifles" is often more of a P.R. stunt than an actual safety measure, because it's so hard to define what, precisely, an Assault Rifle is. Opinions are divided as to whether magazine capacity limits would have any meaningful effect. Background checks can be circumvented in any number of ways. I get it. I really do get it--every proposed law has a problem, a weakness. Many of them have consequences and side-effects that, depending on your point of view, may not be worth the (potentially dubious) benefits of the measure.

But, I'm so tired of hearing that we can't do anything. That anything that we try to do, from outlawing the most dangerous guns, to making guns safer, to trying to keep them out of the wrong people's hands, is always the first step towards a full revocation of our rights and an inevitable slide towards a Nazi/fascist regime which is just dying to take away our guns. That guns are always the solution, and anyone who suggests otherwise is just a Commie Bastard who should stop trying to ruin America.

I hate fanatics of all stripes, and that included gun fanatics. I'm more than willing to defend the 2nd amendment, and your right to own guns. But, those who are firmly in the pro-gun camp have an equal responsibility to engage in sane, adult conversation about how to make our society safer. About how to reduce gun deaths. About how to make our world safer.

About how to keep one more parent from burying a child who didn't have to die.

1 comment:

Hubert Singleton said...

I agree. We need to realize that yes, it is within gun owners' right to own guns should they wish to own one, but I believe it should also be their responsibility to use it judiciously. As far as I’m concerned, the world does not revolve only around them. I think what we need is stricter laws on gun ownership. Psychological tests should be performed to ensure that the permits are given only to those responsible enough to wield a gun judiciously.

Hubert Singleton @ RDF Attorney